The Christian canon is not a fixed deposit of traditions from the past, but a dynamic vehicle by which the risen Lord continues through the Holy Spirit to guide, instruct, and nourish his people. The imperative “to search the Scriptures” reveals the need for its continuous interpretation. The activity of hearing, reading, and praying is required, indeed mandated by the Scripture itself. In every successive generation new light has been promised for those seeking divine illumination to provide fresh understanding, new application to changing cultures, and a call for repentance for persistent failure in living out the imperatives of the gospel. In this constant struggle to live a faithful Christian life, the Scriptures of the church afford the abiding context from which to grow into the image of Christ. It is thus a theological gyroscope for maintaining one’s direction when buffeted by the ever-shifting winds of change.
Childs, Brevard S. The Church’s Guide for Reading Paul: The Canonical Shaping of the Pauline Corpus (p. 26).
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For many students of the Bible, the Old Testament is often seen as an inspired historical record as much as, if not more than, an inspired revelatory narrative. One common objection to the canonical approach (popularized by Childs, Seitz, Sailhamer) is that the approach has no concern for the historical “facticity” of the Bible and the events found within the Biblical narrative. Christopher Seitz gives helpful commentary regarding the canonical approach’s view of historical realities within the text in his recently released book The Character of Christian Scripture: The Significance of a Two-Testament Bible. Seitz writes: Continue Reading…