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Flashcards in 2: The Biblical Story and Theology Deck (13)
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What is the relationship between revelation and systematic theology?

  • Systematic theology has tended to reduce God's revelation to scientia - content knowing, abstract concepts.
  • Nevertheless, his revelation is a historical narrative
    • God reveals himself by his word, and his deeds (speech-acts)


What is the purpose of God's revelation as a narrative?

  • It is a missional revelation. 
    • "... to tell the epic tale of God’s ongoing quest to ransom his creation." - Richter, Epic of Eden, 15


What is the relationship between theology and mission?

  • God’s mission should shape our way of doing theology, and how we conceive it.

    • "Theologians seek knowledge as their way of participating in God’s grand project of transforming the world into God’s home." - Miroslav Volf and Matthew Croasmun, For the Life of the World: Theology that Makes a Difference, 141.


What is the metaphysical approach to knowing God?

  • God is known apophatically, through denial of the creational. God is what the world is not.
    • transcendent
    • eternal
    • immutable
    • etc.


What is a personal-historical approach to knowing God?

  • God has come to us in history. Our knowledge of God is personal. More than scientific knowledge is an existential apprehension, a recognition and personal acknowledgment of the other. It is acquaintance knowledge.
  • "ἐν αὐτῷ γὰρ ζῶμεν καὶ κινούμεθα καὶ ἐσμέν" (Acts 17:28)
  • Who is the God with whom we have to do?


What is the Objectivist approach to knowledge?

  • Objects are known in isolation.
  • Relationships and contexts are accidental.

  • The essence is what matters.

  • Human beings are disconnected individuals.


What is the Covenantal approach to knowledge?

  • Personal knowing
    • Not mastery of the object, but the transformation of the subject (the knower) in relation to the object (the known).

  • The knowing subject is embedded in reality rather than transcendent over it


What could be a covenantal understanding of personhood?

The self is not ultimately a ‘what’, an essence, but a ‘who’, a person. Moreover, this ‘who’ emerges communally rather than in isolation.


How can you explain the concept of Kingdom, God as King?

  • Unilateral relationship
  • He has all authority
  • He is transcendent


How can you explain the concept of Covenant, God as Father?

  • Bilateral relationship
  • Intimacy and Participation
  • Immanence (Accommodation)


What is the relationship between Kingdom and Covenant?

  • The King has entered in relation with his creation
  • He is a kingly father, and a fatherly king
  • The relationship is not only about authority, but mutuality and familiarity.
  • We participate in obedience to God's sovereign plan.


What is meant by "reciprocal fidelity"?

  • reciprocity to the covenant
  • God calls people to conversion, reminds them of their obligation, and obligates himself to provide all that is good.


What are some thoughts on the discussion of Transcendence and Immanence?

  • "We should not think that God is transcendent and in relationship, but transcendent in relationship. God is not less than God in the relationships God establishes." - Terrence Fretheim

  • God is metaphysically transcendent, whereas his immanence speaks to his historical activity.

  • "The God of the Bible is both the Wholly Other and the Infinitely Near. He is both God transcendent and God with us and for us." - Donald Bloesch, God the Almighty: Power, Wisdom, Holiness, Love, 24