Table of Contents
Vol.9: The Flood: Local or Global?
A PROTEST . . . . . . AND A PLEA
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Chapter 1 A Protest . . . .
Chapter 2 . . . . . A Plea.
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1963: Special Doorway Paper (No. 62), published privately by
1979: Part VIII, The Flood: Local or Global?, vol.9 in
The Doorway Papers Series published by Zondervan
1997: Arthur Custance Online Library (HTML)
2001: 2nd Edition (design revisions)
It is generally assumed that if a man is both
a Scholar and a Christian, his writings will automatically bear
the hallmark of Christian Scholarship. But what is it that stamps
Scholarship as specifically 'Christian'?
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A little while ago, when I was
discussing the nature of Christian Scholarship with a very true
friend of mine, he said to me, "The essential point, of
course, is to tell the turth". He said other things also
of importance, yet I felt that his words reflected only a partial
view of what Christian Scholarship is, for after all, the goal
of 'telling the truth' is in no sense uniquely Christian.
In this Paper, therefore, we are
primarily concerned with that which specifically qualifies a
serious word as 'Christian' rather than merely as scholarly.
And I suggest that the hallmark of Christian Scholarship is not
that it states the Truth (which it certainly ought to do), but
rather that it faces up to the implications of the truths presented.
It is not in the presentation of
the facts or ideas themselves that an author shows his true colours,
but how he deals with their implications. One can hardly have
a 'Christian Mathematics', or a 'Christian Physics', or a 'Christian
Chemistry', for the subject matter in each case remains the same
for all investigators whether they are Christian or not. But
the manner in which an author deals with the implications of
his data is the crucial issue, and I believe it is at this point
that there is a fundamental distinction between the scholarly
presentation which is a Christian one and the scholarly presentation
which is merely a secular one. To my mind, any work which fails
to deal with implications as they relate to the body of Christian
Faith cannot qualify as Christian Scholarship.
This Paper is really a protest
against the growing tendency of recognized scholars in various
fields who are also known as Christians, to ignore this responsibility;
and a plea to authors, editors, publishers, and reviewers, to
re-examine their own responsibility in this regard. For I believe
the issue is becoming a serious one.