Sunday, December 4, 2011

peter rollins' broken bible

Ah, yes, more Rollins philosophical drivel. This time, somehow seeing the Bible as literal and inerrant is somehow impossible. Yawn.

Philosophically speaking the claim that the Bible in its entirety is literal and inerrant (i.e. self-evident, internally coherent, and a reflection of the mind of God) operates as a ‘master signifier’. This means that it is a claim without any specific content that is worn as a badge to let you know what team you play for. It doesn’t matter too much how you actually fill in this empty container as long as you make the claim. It functions then as a shibboleth that identifies you as being in a certain tribe.

Wow. Yawn.

So, saying the Bible is true in all it records and inerrant is somehow an empyt claim, "whith any specific content"? Really? I'd say Rollins was speaking in ignorancy, except I don't believe it of one so miseducated; rather, I think he knows that what he's saying is false, but wants to believe it anyway.

Just to show you how empty it isn't, take a look at this.


The authority of Scripture is a key issue for the Christian Church in this and every age. Those who profess faith in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior are called to show the reality of their discipleship by humbly and faithfully obeying God's written Word. To Stray from Scripture in faith or conduct is disloyalty to our Master. Recognition of the total truth and trustworthiness of Holy Scripture is essential to a full grasp and adequate confession of its authority.

The following Statement affirms this inerrancy of Scripture afresh, making clear our understanding of it and warning against its denial. We are persuaded that to deny it is to set aside the witness of Jesus Christ and of the Holy Spirit and to refuse that submission to the claims of God's own Word which marks true Christian faith. We see it as our timely duty to make this affirmation in the face of current lapses from the truth of inerrancy among our fellow Christians and misunderstanding of this doctrine in the world at large.

There is much more to it than the couple of paragraphs above.

So, no, the only empty thing here is Rollins' claim that biblical literal truth and inerrancy are empty. His claims are empty of any truth.

I've found it a truism, that when people like Rollins' accuse their opposition of something, you will find that they are themselves doing the things they accuse others of doing. Rollins' non-literal bible, where for example God is not allowed to explain Himself and where fictions like Lilith are somehow useful for explaining away the Bible's claims, is the real attempt to cut up the Bible and make it an object of human creation, something he and others like him may praise to the heights as they cast it down to the depths, may claim to love even as they slice and dice and abuse it.

I will take the literally true and inerrant Word of God over the illogical musings of Rollins any day.

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