Wednesday, April 26, 2023

We have the prophetic word made more sure: Natural Theology, Hermeneutics, and Sola Scriptura

It has been some time, but I have completed my response to Jordan Steffaniak's article in Modern Reformation on Natural Theology and Sola Scriptura, and have decided to just publish it on my website, here.

At a time when the term "biblicism" is thrown around as a term of derision, and where Reformed confessionalists have veered hard towards Roman Catholicism in her fascination with the philosophy of Thomas Aquinas, it is hard for those of us who are Reformed and still hold to the Reformed Confessions to stand on the truths of Scripture. I offer this response here therefore as a way forward between the "biblicist" position and the new ressourcement position, which I am convinced is bringing the churches back towards the epistemic position of Roman Catholicism, and a rejection of Sola Scriptura for a position that can be described as "Scripture Plus": Scripture is supreme, but we also need X or Scripture cannot be properly interpreted.

Here is an excerpt from my paper, entitled "We have the prophetic Word made more sure: Natural Theology, Hermeneutics, and Sola Scriptura":

It is along this trajectory that Jordon Steffaniak, co-founder of the website The London Lyceum, wrote an article for Modern Reformation arguing for the use of Natural Theology in reading and interpreting Scripture. Steffaniak’s main point is that there is an errant view of Sola Scriptura within Evangelism, a “disordered variation,” called “biblicism.” As opposed to “biblicism,” the correct view of Sola Scriptura is one that must utilize external sources like Natural Theology as a guide to understand Scripture, although Scripture remains the “supreme source” of the Christian faith.

Steffaniak contrasts what he claims to be the true Sola Scriptura with biblicism’s supposed distorted view of Sola Scriptura. But is Steffaniak’s contrast legitimate? How does one rightly interpret the Scriptures? ...


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