Monday, June 8, 2009

A Thought on Bibliolatry

A while back I wrote this post on Bibliolatry. Bibliolatry is the charge leveled typically upon conservatives to say that the revere the Bible too highly because they ground their life on it. Because we believe the Bible teaches us how to view the world, so we are called Bibliolaters--we make the Bible our idol. Instead, many who level such charges will say that the Bible is engaged in its own thought world and we cannot give is the position of authoritative or norming norm. We must allow it to remain its own, wrapped up, if you will, in its own thought world. So we are to leave the Bible as it is, merely an ancient document, merely culturally conditioned.

D.A. Carson has an execellent repsonse to this kind of think.

"The point is that even the most right-wing fundamentalist thinks that the Bible refers to realities beyond the dieas themselves that are found on the Bible's pages. In that sense, no fundamentalist can rigthly be charged with bibliolatry, since the Bible is not the ultimate object of veneration, but rather the realities to which the Bible refers (God, Christ, Christ's death, and resurrection, etc.). But if [someone] denies that Biblical extratextual referentiality is crucial and utterly essential to faithful Christian existence, he uses the Bible as no fundamentalist ever does: he goes back to the Bible, and stops. That is biblioaltry." (Renewing the Center, page 49)

So I ask: who's the bibliolater now?

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