Editorials -- By: Anonymous

Journal: Bibliotheca Sacra
Volume: BSAC 097:388 (Oct 1940)
Article: Editorials
Author: Anonymous


Why Substitutes?

First sociology and now philosophy are finding an ever-increasing emphasis in the curriculums of the theological seminaries. Sociology, while it offers some practical ideas to the pastor that would help him in his contact with his people, is largely demanded as an undergirding of the so-called “social gospel” and aims along with that gospel at the salvation of society and to that extent abandons the Biblical program for the regeneration of the individual. That men who are accepting a responsibility in the gospel ministry should be trained away from the divine purpose for this age and encouraged to undertake the salvation of society and this in the face of revelation which asserts that society as such-the cosmos world-will not be saved but rather goes on to well-defined judgment, is tragic indeed. Persistent attention to such unscriptural objectives in the face of a disintegrating social order can be accounted for in no other way than that it is one of Satan’s delusions. The preacher is not appointed to extinguish the conflagration, but he is appointed to snatch brands from the burning. If perchance the advocate of the social regeneration lays hold of a text of Scripture which anticipates a coming righteous kingdom on the earth, he will do well to observe that such a kingdom is never said to be the effect of man’s labors, but is the consummation of the mighty power and determination of the King of kings when He returns to this earth. He will not return to a converted world, but there will be a converted world when He has judged the earth and dismissed the unrighteous and established true righteousness on the earth. Sociology should appear, if it appears in the curriculum of theological study at all, after men have learned what are the first principles of the divine purpose.

More recently philosophy is being incorporated into

theological disciplines, especially for higher degrees. Word is published that one theological seminary is requiring the standard work for the Ph.D. degree along with some theology for a higher theological degree. The query rises in the mind of one whose ideals conform somewhat to those of the seminaries of two generations ago as to whether theology-the queen of all the sciences and more extensive in its comprehensiveness than all other sciences combined-has ceased to be what it has been and whether it must now totter about, leaning on two crutches-sociology and philosophy. Sociology and philosophy have no more an integral part in Systematic Theology than English literature or psychology-all of which are the recognized preparatory discipline of the candidate for theological instruction.

If physicians were to give up the study of anatomy they would c...

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