Posts Tagged ‘Sola Fide’

N.T. Wright and the ‘New Perspective of Paul’ is the topic of discussion at the White Horse Inn

Thanks to Micheal Bird for the link. he also offers some discussion of the mp3. Here are some notes I wrote while listening to it.

1-3 Mins: Highlights the strengths of N.T. Wright

3-5 mins: Criticism: 1) for Wright faith is the same as faithfulness 2) Fails to distinguish the covenant of Law with the covenant of grace 3) reduces the works of the law in Paul to the ceremonies which distinguish Jews from Gentiles 4) await a future justification based on ‘whole of life lived’ 5) Gospel is Jesus Christ is Lord not Caesar, gentiles no longer need to be circumcised.

Micheal Horten asks: Is what must i do to be saved a foreign import into the gospel? What is the Gospel?

5 mins onwards: Gives some positive insights ‘probably the second best living theological writer’. His work on the Resurrection is outstanding, he can right for the pew and the academy.  Wright is ‘dangerous’, on one side he is on the side of the angels. The problem comes with Paul. He caricatures the whole of protestantism as pietism. Wright fails to offer a nuanced understanding of Calvin/Luther. Wright misunderstands Luther, Judaism, and Medieval Christianity.

Krister Stendahl, Dunn and Sanders are discussed. He ‘rewrites the whole Pauline corpus’. There is reductionism, an overreaction to Bultmann, the law is bad, low doctrine of church, me and my personal relationship with Jesus. When you work with Sanders, Dunn and a bit of Wright, they fail to understand the Cross, they don’t know what to do with it.

Wright redefines righteousness language, it has nothing to do with imputation. Wright mocks a reformation caricature. For Wright it is not about how individuals get saved. Its more about Jesus being shown to be Lord. To say Jesus is Lord is that really good news, If so Why? Its only good news if you are part of the people he has delivered from bondage. The good news need to understood in reformation categories.

16:30 onwards: Includes critical comments from Packer. Robert Gundry argues against imputation so ‘bring Pietists/Catholics together.’  They(Dunn, Wright)  are reading their own theology into it. This is (Wright) Pelagianism. Differences recognised between Dunn, Wright. Wright needs to stop saying that the reformation position is ‘the law is bad’.  Dunn, Sanders and Wright are Arminian in their theological system. They do not stress it is all by grace alone. 22:30 Min. I think they are talking about Wright rather than Dunn. 23 mins McClaren is brought into the picture. ‘At the end of the day this is really the radical enthusiasm of the anabaptists’.

The NPP has stalled in its tracks. 24 min: John Piper’s critique of Wright is mentioned. Also Kim and Francis Watson. When the dust settles the excesses of Wright/Dunn will be forgotten. The influence of this teaching has gone beyond the academy.

They recognise that the bible is often not read as an unfolding story. 28 mins: This shows they understand the narrative dimension of Paul/Jesus. They are closer to Wright than they realise.

31 mins. Wright is dangerous. He denounces the language of ‘perosnal saviour’ but rejects personal salvation is included.

32 mins. Works of the law is discussed. Justification for Wright is ‘who is a CHristian’ not ‘How do I become a Christian’. Dunn makes ‘works of the law’ fit with his thesis, it is the joker in the pack. Romans 2 ‘doers of the law’ there will be a judgement according to the works. It is part of an argument that ends in 3:20 ‘no-one will be justified according to the law’. They say they have tried to be fair and balanced.


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