From: David Moore (
Date: Tue Jan 09 1996 - 11:57:14 EST

On 8 Jan 1996, Charles W. Bradley wrote:

> >I'm wondering whether this is really meant to argue that critical
> >methodology should NOT be taught in the seminaries. I hope >not. While
> reasoning may raise problems for faith, I don't see >much that seminaries
> >can teach if they abandon reasoning altogether.
> I did not mean to imply a tension between faith and reason or rationality in
> posting the verses from Hebrews. "...the term faith is restricted to the assent
> to those truths which rest upon the direct testimony of God alone, objectively
> revealed in the Scriptures, as discerned through spiritual illumination.."
> [.A.A. Hodge].
        The role of the Spirit in interpretation is difficult to pin down,
and so, often, not emphatically emphasized by scholars. The text is more
concrete and so lends itself to critical evaluation both in terms of
establishing what the text is and in interpreting what it says.

        Certainly, the legitimate action and the true message of the
Spirit are delineated in the written Scriptures; and, even among
Pentecostals, actions or interpretations or messages that purport to be
from the Holy Spirit but are at odds with the written message of
Scripture are mot accepted as legitimate.

        There doesn't seem to be any way other than by sound exegesis to
"test the spirits." To say that we should believe something or some
interpretation because, to our knowledge, and as far as we can remember,
it was always and everywhere so believed by Christians we respect is,
IMHO, a false criterion.

        The Scriptures certainly indicate that there is a key role to be
played by the Holy Spirit in the interpretation of biblical truth. But
just how that role is to be played still largely remains to be defined -
at least among biblical scholars.

David L. Moore Southeastern Spanish District
Miami, Florida of the Assemblies of God Department of Education

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