Posts tagged ‘Barth’

November 8th, 2013

Christo-Monism and Why You Should Know the Term

by Max Andrews

Barth has made many contributions to Christian theology. Christo-monism came to light in contrast to liberal anthropocentrism.  It adopts ecclesial-centrism of Catholicism.  With this, Jesus Christ is the center and focus of all revelation and so of all God’s elective and redemptive work for humanity.  Therefore, all doctrinal headings are brought in naturally under Jesus Christ.

June 7th, 2012

Theology Thursday: Thomas F. Torrance Part 1

by Max Andrews

Theologian: Thomas F. Torrance (1913 – 2007) – the development of scientific theology

More about his theology:  Thomas Torrance was a professor of Christian Dogmatics at the University of Edinburgh in Scotland.  He was heavily influenced by Karl Barth and contemporary science.  He translated Barth’s Dogmatics from German to English. (Which is quite voluminous–thirteen volumes, six million words).  He was also a recipient of the Templeton Prize for the advancement of religion.

Torrance was the primary contributor to the development of scientific theology.  He argued that the universe of space and time is the means by which God has revealed himself to man, as it comes to view under human inquiry to develop and formulate knowledge of God.  This was the development of an exegesis of nature. 

Lorenzo Valla (1406-1457) developed the interrogative (interrogatio) rather than the problematic (quaestio) form of inquiry.  Valla’s mode of inquiry was one in which questions yield results that are entirely new, giving rise to knowledge that cannot be derived by an inferential process from what was already known.  This method was similar to the works of Stoic lawyers and educators like Cicero and Quintilian; that is, questioning witnesses, investigating documents and states of affairs without any prior conception of what the truth might be.  Valla transitioned from not only using this method for historical knowledge but also applied it as “logic for scientific discovery.”[1] Valla’s logic for scientific discovery was the art of finding out things rather than merely the art of drawing distinctions and connecting them together.  He called for an active inquiry (activa inquisitio).  John Calvin (1509-1564) applied this method to the interpretation of Scripture and thus became the father of modern biblical exegesis and interpretation.[2]  Francis Bacon (1561-1626) applied it to the interpretation of the books of nature, as well as to the books of God, and became the father of modern empirical science.[3]

February 2nd, 2012

Theology Thursday: Karl Barth’s Christo-Monism

by Max Andrews

Theology Thursday is a new feature on the blog, which gives a brief introduction to a theological person of significance.

Theologian: Karl Barth (1886-1969)

General summary of his theology: Barth has made man contributions to Christian theology. In this post I’ll give a summary of Barth’s Christo-monism. Christo-monism came to light in contrast to liberal anthropocentrism.  It adopts ecclesial-centrism of Catholicism.  With this, Jesus Christ is the center and focus of all revelation and so of all God’s elective and redemptive work for humanity.  Therefore, all doctrinal headings are brought in naturally under Jesus Christ

March 22nd, 2011

Karl Barth on Studying Theology

by Max Andrews

As usual, I’m doing my studies late at night (it’s currently 1:26 AM).  I have an exam in my class on twentieth century theology this week and I was reading Karl Barth’s Evangelical Theology. I read on the role of theology, the task of theology, and the Word (which is quite the task).  I’ve felt quite convicted about not studying as much as I should and I’ve felt like a diluted academic.  Perhaps I’m off, but I have the desire to be studying for hours a day in the fields of science, philosophy, and theology.  For the most part, I’m not near where I want to be academically.  I look at these great intellectuals like Kant, Einstein, and Barth, and I look at where I am and I’m wondering how I’ll ever follow in those footsteps (granted, Kant didn’t publish until he was 57, but still…).

I skipped to Barth’s chapter on Study to get some perspective and motivation.  I certainly found what I was looking for. Barth’s words can be cross-discipline, it’s not only applicable to theology.  So, for students who want to take their academics seriously, heed these brief words.

…No one should study merely in order to pass an examination, to become a pastor, or in order to gain an academic degree.  When properly understood, an examination is a friendly conversation of older students of theology with younger ones, concerning certain themes in which they share a common interest.  The purpose of this conversation is to give younger participants an opportunity to exhibit whether and to what extent they have exerted themselves, and to what extent they appear to give promise of doing so in the future.  The real value of a doctorate, even when earned with the greatest distinction, is totally dependent on the degree to which its recipient has conducted and maintained himself as a learner.  Its worth depends, as well, entirely on the extent to which he further conducts and maintains himself as such.  Only by his qualification as a learner can he show himself qualified to become a teacher.  Whoever studies theology does so because to study it is (quite apart from any personal aims of the student) necessary, good, and beautiful in relationship to the service to which he has been called.  Theology must possess him so completely that he can be concerned with it only in a manner of a studiosus. Karl Barth, Evangelical Theology (Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 1963), 172.