Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Dodgy Theology

Here's how it is. I'm fed up with the dodgy theology we're being fed. Yesterday, again, we were told that Jesus didn't die as an atoning sacrifice for our sins - that the theory of the atonement is just a remnant from the feudal and primitive ideas of religion where an angry god needs to be appeased by a sacrifice - that the only thing the cross shows is the love of God, and that love triumphs over evil by it.

But more than that, we're also being told that God didn't plan for, or know that Jesus would die - that Jesus came to the world to invite people to join the kingdom, and that in some sort of an accident, Jesus got himself crucified, because that's what happens when a good person comes about - bad people want to 'get them'.

In a way, it's similar to what the Jesuit priest was coming off with at the Approach event last week (see my blog posting).

Now, in one sense, I don't care if the tutors want to come off with this sort of nonsense, because it is so very obviously false, and unbiblical. However, the problems come when others, who lap up everything the tutors say, hear it and think it is true.

But even worse - and this is the thing that has annoyed me so much recently - it is the lack of respect that I and other evangelicals seem to encounter when we try to put forward biblical views on the matters under scrutiny, or when we object (respectfully, of course), to the dodgy teaching being given. The line that one tutor in particular takes is that 'we don't have time to go into this now, but you aren't seeing it in context, and you're missing the point of what I'm saying'. We have all the time in the world in the class to go off on wee stories, or spend long periods of time on pointless things, but when something important comes up, and something of crucial importance for a proper understanding of Romans (which we were looking at yesterday), then we haven't got time, and must move on.

It's also amazing to see the way some classes are taught, where the only commentaries or books consulted are those either written by the tutor, or are those he agrees with. He has, in the past, said that commentaries are excellent if he has worked on them, or if he agrees with what is contained therein. The same class is taught by reading through photocopies of one book, and commenting on it. There is no attempt made to present other views or scholarship, or even to allow time for discussion when I or someone else wants to bring up another (or more especially, the biblical) way of looking at an issue.

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