Editorial -- By: Anonymous

Journal: Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society
Volume: JETS 09:1 (Winter 1966)
Article: Editorial
Author: Anonymous


Scholars who state their position do readers a great service. This is particularly true in the area of Biblical scholarship. Basic presuppositions concerning the Scriptures are crucially important inasmuch as they determine theological method, interpretation, and numerous other aspects of Biblical studies.

In current studies on the Scriptures it is very helpful indeed when reading the volume Introduction to the Old Testament (Harper & Bros., 1941, p. 141) by the late Robert H. Pfeiffer of Harvard that in his interpretation he considers the Graf-Wellhausen hypothesis as fundamentally sound. Dr. Geerhardus Vos, formerly professor at Princeton, in his book Biblical Theology (Eerdmans, 1948) with clarity asserts that he accepts and studies the Scriptures as they lie before him and rejects the modern critical theories. The historicity of the Biblical events are crucially important to him in his interpretation. G. A. F. Knight, formerly at McCormick Theological Seminary in Chicago and now Principal of the Pacific Theological College in Fiji, likewise states his presuppositions in his volume, A Christian Theology of the Old Testament (1959, SCM Press, Great Britain). He accepts the documentary hypothesis as a working framework and thus adopts a radical rearrangement of the persons and events as they are presented in the Old Testament. The forthright statement in each case is commendable.

The men assembled in Cincinnati in 1949 to organize the Evangelical Theological Society were concerned that an opportunity would be provided for Biblical scholars to share their efforts in research on a common basis. This was expressed in its doctrinal statement asserting that the Bible is considered to be the inerrant Word of God. Even as individuals state their position so this society forthrightly declares its basis for Biblical scholarship.

Currently a number of orthodox circles reflect uncertainty concerning the trustworthiness of Scripture (cf. Guest Editorial in Vol. 8, No. 4). Others assert that inerrancy is not important or sponsor lectures in which the Biblical accounts in Genesis were advocated as myths. Appropriately this position was challenged by local faculty members. In view of such trends it seemed appropriate for the Evangelical Theological Society to focus special attention on a discussion of its doctrinal statement in its Bulletin as well as at the annual meeting. Part of the latter is shared with our readers in this issue.

In his presidential address Dr. Gordon Clark critically evaluates our basic doctrinal statement. The panel discussion with Dr. John F. Walvoord as moderator focused attention upon the topic “Biblical Inerrancy Today.” Three of the panelists’ papers are offered in this issue. Dr. Kenneth S....

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