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April 16, 2005


andy gr

I think this is a really helpful way to come at the authority of the Bible. When the Anglican Communion came up recently with the Windsor Report (on what to do about division between 'liberal' and 'conservative' Provinces), it said that
1> strictly speaking, there is no 'authority of Scripture' - all the authority is God's
2> however, the phrase it useful shorthand for the belief that God's "usual" way of exercising authority is to transform the earth by means of "a community of people redirected and energised by reading Scripture in the power of the Spirit."

Does this come close to what you're suggesting?


Just to offer an encouragement for that 'third blog' - interesting stuff, thanks.

graham old

This is fascinating, Caroline.

I would certainly see no reason why such an approach would be rejected by those who call themselves theologians. It seems to fit well with the few places where scripture is assumed to be speaking of the nature and function of holy scripture. (E.g. 2 Tim. 3:16-17)

How would you see this fitting in with the kind of stuff I was thinking about here?

I'm not sure that I can see how this reduces the number of times we feel the urge to say that some or other group are not being true to the bible. If it has PA over me, then doesn't it have PA over George Bush and does it's PA over me not then compell me to say that Bush is not being obedient to the PA of scripture in invading Iraq and destroying the environment? Otherwise, would we not run the risk of this being a purely individualistic thing (which is the first thing that struck me as questionnable about it)?

Please write a 3rd piece! :-)


I am trying to get my head round this, and loving the implications. I love the fact that transformation and how i live life are primary results. What the bible "means" type questions require to make a second or third jump into "application" in a way that feels so false.

Graham has good questions about the individuality/universality of the challenge, i look forward to the repsonse ;o).

Thanks, Caroline


Graham, I said that it would reduce the number of conflicts not that it would eliminate them! :-)

I guess that my point would be that in focusing on what the bible provokes me to do, in becoming more like Christ; I will spend less attention on supposed universally valid explanations of the meaning of that text. So I am less likely to 'fight' someone else whose interpretation of scripture is different to mine.

I also guess that my opposition to Bush and Blairs' assault on Iraq wouldn't come from the Bible. To come to such a conclusion would require me to do things to the text (ignoring some bits, contextualising other bits) that I feel unqualified to do.

I suspect that you were making the Scripture as Opera analogy work a bit hard! :-) but I did like the idea of living it, letting it live in us.


Andy, I really like those points from the Windsor Report. Sometimes we anglibods surprise me with just how good our reports can be! there agains sometimes ...

graham old

"I suspect that you were making the Scripture as Opera analogy work a bit hard! :-)"

How dare you?! ;-)

Yeah, it was a partly playful suggestion and partly an attempt to say something like you have in a non-threatening way. (I.e. non-threatening to your average conservative evangelical. I wrote it at a rare moment when I was trying to be helpful, not clever or argumentative!)


"I wrote it at a rare moment when I was trying to be helpful"

Dear Graham

You mean that you have times when you aren't like that?


By the way, you still haven't told me if there's anything you don't eat!

graham old

Olvies! But then, who does?! :-)


What's an olvie?

I think I understand.

In a forum that I frequent dedicated to discussing the Integral Theory put out by Ken Wilber, I've seen/heard alot of discussion about the main difference between male and female. I think it's a familiar one to many because it is echoed in many cultures throughout time. Even the Creation Narrative confirms it. Talk about provocative! Anyhoo, the gist is that male = objective organizing principle and motivation while female = subjective uniting principle and love. Lemme just say up front that I don't like these characterizations, but they're on the table for discussion so I engage.

Time after time I see the emergent hermaneutic displaying more and more of this female type of character stamp and less of (what I see when I look back in time) the catagorizing MO of Identify, Isolate and Eliminate. Since the practices of the church have been predominantly the fruit of male minds over all these centuries, it makes sense that it would manifest that way. It also makes sense that since emergers are including the voices of women in the creation of the new hermaneutic, we would see a shift into this other direction.

Less description, more involvement. Less involvement, more incarnation. Less think and more do. Less do and more be. In fact, this change has begun to sound more like Jesus.

I made this observation over at Jason's place...


...the other day when I read his notes about maggie dawn's shpiel at the big emergent gig here in the states. And after seeing what manly men can do to the doctrine of the Incarnation (see my convos with joe about Orthodoxy), I am ready for the change. I'm sorry if this offends. It's hard to discuss this kind of thing without pushing buttons. I even offend myself with it somewhat.

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