A Postmodern View Of Scripture -- By: Norman L. Geisler

Journal: Christian Apologetics Journal
Volume: CAJ 07:1 (Spring 2008)
Article: A Postmodern View Of Scripture
Author: Norman L. Geisler

A Postmodern View Of Scripture

Norman L. Geisler, Ph.D.


Thomas A. Howe, Ph.D.

Norman L. Geisler is Professor of Theology and Apologetics, and Thomas A. Howe is Professor of Bible and Biblical Languages, both at Southern Evangelical Seminary in Charlotte, NC

Post-moderns generally affirm the self-defeating creed of being creedless. But one cannot avoid doctrine, if only for the reason that this is a doctrinal claim itself. Further, one need only survey their writings to find a multitude of doctrinal claims. Their doctrine of Scripture is no exception.

Since space will not permit discussing all so-called post-modern evangelicals on Scripture, two major proponents will be examined: Stanley Grenz and Brian McLaren. Grenz, now beatified and enlightened, was the philosopher of the movement. And McLaren is one of the foremost proponents of the emerging (post-modern) church.

Stanley Grenz On Scripture

My friend, Gordon Lewis, was right when he told me [Norm Geisler] that the Evangelical Theological Society would have done

itself a great service by focusing on Professor Grenz’s deviant view of Scripture and not just that of Clark Pinnock. As it turned out Pinnock slipped through their net, and Grenz slipped off into eternity. Nonetheless, Grenz’s view is still alive and is the best effort to provide philosophical underpinning to their doctrine of Scripture, and, thereby, it is one of the best ways to understand the foundation of the Emerging Church movement.

Classical Orthodox View Of Scripture

Grenz summarizes well the classical view he rejects: “Evangelical theologians begin with the affirmation that God has revealed himself. This self-disclosure has come through general revelation and more completely in special revelation.” Further, “the Holy Spirit preserved some of this special revelation by inspiring biblical writers [really, writings] to inscripturate it. The Bible, therefore, is God’s Word. Because the Bible is the inspired Word of God, it is dependable, even inerrant.”1 Unfortunately, Grenz rejects this approach, claiming that “the construction of bibliology in this manner, ‘from above’ as it were, has certain shortcomings.”2 He adds, “We can no longer construct our doctrine of Scripture in the classical manner.”3

Rejection Of Classical Orthodoxy

The post-modern rejection of the classical orthodox view of Scripture is sweeping. It includes a ...

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