Wednesday, May 10, 2006

The Primary Theological Task?

Professor John Webster says:

A dogmatic account of the nature of Holy Scripture can, of course, have only a modest role, ancillary to the primary theological task, which is exegesis.
(Holy Scripture: a dogmatic sketch, p3)

Exegesis? The primary theological task?

Exegesis is perhaps the first theological task. We proceed from the understanding of the Bible. Although we might need some prolegomena and some presuppositions.

But maybe exegesis is the first theological task. The Bible is our one supreme authority. The text of the Bible must govern us in all things, including the frameworks we inevitably bring to the text. Our old friend the virtous spiral rather than a vicuious circle.

Maybe exegesis is the first among equals, with systematic theology, pastoral theology, church history and so on.

But exegesis is certainly not the first theological task. Not the pre-eminent or supreme theological task. Not the goal.

Preaching, prayer or praise are more like the primary theological tasks.

Let’s have exegesis at an early stage. But let’s have it in its place.

No comments: