A friend of mine in Russia asked me whether theology can be considered a science. And I suspect that, lurking behind this question, is the question whether theology should have a place as a discipline or field of study at a modern university. This video is a brief response to the question and related concerns.
A chapel talk originally delivered at Tabor College in Hillsboro, Kansas, September 10, 2018.
My vocational journey can be summed up in four lessons I have learned: to pray and seek guidance for direction; one is too small a number to ever achieve success; grasp tradition with one hand, while seeking new ways to express those traditions; and look for a need in your community or church and try to fill that need. I learned these four lessons as I sought to find a way to use music in ministry and especially in the development of the Timeless Psalter/commentary project.
I am pleased to announce the fourth annual Austin Graduate School of Theology – First Things Lecture, to be held in Austin, Texas, on Monday, October 8, at 7:00 p.m. This year’s speaker will be Ephraim Radner. Radner is Professor of Historical Theology at Wycliffe College, an evangelical seminary of the Anglican tradition at the University of Toronto.
Austin Graduate School of Theology is excited to cooperate in this lecture once again with First Things, which is one of the most widely read and influential religious journals in the United States. As an ecumenical endeavor—featuring regular contributions from Roman Catholic, Eastern Orthodox, and evangelical Protestant writers—the publication shares many of the same concerns dear to the original Restoration Movement. The journal also shares much in common with Austin Grad in particular, whose mission is to promote knowledge, understanding, and practice of the Christian faith by equipping Christians and churches for service in the Kingdom of God.
When people have asked me what I am reading about, or which course I am teaching this fall, or what my most recent book is about, and my answer is the “history of interpretation,” I have noticed a facial expression that, as a historical theologian, I have become accustomed to seeing. Their look, or sometimes their accompanying explanation of it, conveys the message that both history and interpretation are sufficiently boring on their own, and the combination of the two must be dreadful.
To ask about the history of biblical interpretation, however, is to ponder very important questions for our own day.