Saturday, 27 August 2011

Chris Sinkinson on Is God a Monster?

Chris Sinkinson, ‘Unapologetic Christianity: Is God a Monster?’ (2011).

Chris Sinkinson has a brief but helpful piece here, first published in the June 2011 of Evangelicals Now.

He’s thinking about some of the ‘difficult’ issues raised about polygamy, genocide, slavery, etc., in our reading of some Old Testament texts, and outlines four points to take note of:

1. Creation ideal – that we live in the ‘middle’ of the story, where the disruption of sin has brought evil and suffering.

2. Ancient Near Eastern context – God’s revelation of himself within a specific historical context with all its particular cultural practices.

3. Biblical honesty – with Scripture being honest about human failings, and with narratives being descriptive not necessarily prescriptive.

4. Bible’s sweep – the importance of looking at ‘difficult’ Old Testament passages in the light of Scripture as a whole.

He briefly applies some of these points to holy war in the book of Joshua, but doesn’t pull back from saying that such judgments on nations may offer a glimpse of future judgment by a holy God.

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