“What man can know by his own power according to the measure of his natural powers, his understanding, his feeling, will be at most something like a supreme being, an absolute nature, the idea of an utterly free power, of a being towering over everything. This absolute and supreme being and absolute nature, the ultimate and most profound, this ‘thing in itself,’ has nothing to do with God. It is part of the intuitions and marginal possibilities of man’s thinking, man’s contrivance. Man is able to think this being; but he has not thereby thought God. God is thought and known when in His own freedom God makes Himself apprehensible.” Karl Barth Dogmatics in Outline
Scholar Daniel Wallace is interviewed by Lee Strobel for The Case for the Real Jesus—Student Edition: A Journalist Investigates Current Challenges to Christianity; Strobel begins:
THE PROTECTIVE SHELL
I’ve heard people say, “Find me one error, and I’ll throw out the whole Bible.” I wondered what Wallace thought about that. “What if you found an incontrovertible error in the Bible?” I asked. “How would you react?” He thought for a moment, then replied. “It wouldn’t affect my foundational view of Christ. I don’t start by saying, ‘If the Bible has a few mistakes, then I have to throw it all out.’ That’s not a logical position. We don’t take that attitude toward any other ancient historical writings. For instance, did the first-century Jewish historian Josephus need to be inerrant before we could affirm that he got anything right?
“If we do that to the…
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The most paradoxical and at the same time the most unique and characteristic claim made by Christianity is that in the Resurrection of Christ the Lord from the dead, man has completely conquered death, and that “in Christ” the dead will rise again to enjoy eternal life, in spiritualized and transfigured bodies and in a totally new creation. This new life in the Kingdom of God is to be not merely a possibly received inheritance but in some sense the fruit of our agony and labor, love, and prayers in union with the Holy Spirit. Such a fantastic and humanly impossible belief has generally been left in the background by liberal Christianity of the 19th and early 20th centuries, but anyone who reads the New Testament objectively must admit that this is the doctrine of the first Christians.
Thomas Merton, The New Man, 1961