Author Topic: David Lose: Is the Bible True?  (Read 6567 times)

Steverem

  • ALPB Contribution Leader
  • *****
  • Posts: 1581
    • View Profile
David Lose: Is the Bible True?
« on: April 04, 2011, 03:23:30 PM »
Submitted without comment in an attempt to solicit honest opinions.  Any thoughts on Lose and his theology in general, or this article in particular?

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/david-lose/is-the-bible-true_b_841949.html?ref=fb&src=sp

Michael_Rothaar

  • ALPB Forum Regular
  • ****
  • Posts: 428
  • Married to Linda in 1970. Ordained in TALC in 1971
    • View Profile
Re: David Lose: Is the Bible True?
« Reply #1 on: April 04, 2011, 04:07:54 PM »
Submitted without comment in an attempt to solicit honest opinions.  Any thoughts on Lose and his theology in general, or this article in particular?

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/david-lose/is-the-bible-true_b_841949.html?ref=fb&src=sp

Although I've never met him or heard him preach, I've come to value much of his work at workingpreacher.org, which I regularly consult.

In this article written for a secular medium, I appreciated this thought:

[Jules, in Pulp Fiction] asserts that the ultimate criteria of truth isn't factual accuracy but a compelling, even transformative witness. Clearly there are many ways to answer the question of whether the Bible is true. If you are interested primarily in its factual accuracy, then your options are clear and you might as well pick a side. If, however, you're interested in a way out of the stalemate and false dichotomy of the present conservative-liberal debate, then you might join Jules in putting the matter differently. When you read the Bible, that is, do you feel God's touch? Does God get involved?
Mike Rothaar
Retired from roster of active ELCA pastors 01 Jul 2012.
Mind and Spirit still working.

Brian Stoffregen

  • ALPB Contribution Leader
  • *****
  • Posts: 44438
  • ἐγὼ δὲ λέγω ὑμῖν, ἀγαπᾶτε τοὺς ἐχθροὺς ὑμῶν
    • View Profile
Re: David Lose: Is the Bible True?
« Reply #2 on: April 04, 2011, 04:25:17 PM »
A young rabbinical student asked his teacher, "Is that story of Jacob wrestling with God true?"
He answered, "Of course it's true. It happens to me all the time."
"The church … had made us like ill-taught piano students; we play our songs, but we never really hear them, because our main concern is not to make music, but but to avoid some flub that will get us in dutch." [Robert Capon, _Between Noon and Three_, p. 148]

Terry W Culler

  • ALPB Contribution Leader
  • *****
  • Posts: 2359
    • View Profile
Re: David Lose: Is the Bible True?
« Reply #3 on: April 05, 2011, 07:16:12 AM »
So if someone experiences a transforming witness in the Quran does that make Mohammed the prophet of the true God.  If someone experiences a transforming witness from the angel Moroni, does that make Joseph Smith truly the modern day prophet of God.  Aristotle was right, A is A.  A cannot be not-A.  Truth is true, it cannot be not-true.  Falsehood is false.  The good thing about this post modernist view is that it carries within itself the seeds of its own destruction and that destruction can't come too soon for me.



Submitted without comment in an attempt to solicit honest opinions.  Any thoughts on Lose and his theology in general, or this article in particular?

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/david-lose/is-the-bible-true_b_841949.html?ref=fb&src=sp

Although I've never met him or heard him preach, I've come to value much of his work at workingpreacher.org, which I regularly consult.

In this article written for a secular medium, I appreciated this thought:

[Jules, in Pulp Fiction] asserts that the ultimate criteria of truth isn't factual accuracy but a compelling, even transformative witness. Clearly there are many ways to answer the question of whether the Bible is true. If you are interested primarily in its factual accuracy, then your options are clear and you might as well pick a side. If, however, you're interested in a way out of the stalemate and false dichotomy of the present conservative-liberal debate, then you might join Jules in putting the matter differently. When you read the Bible, that is, do you feel God's touch? Does God get involved?
Trying to be retired but failing

Dadoo

  • ALPB Contribution Leader
  • *****
  • Posts: 3054
    • View Profile
Re: David Lose: Is the Bible True?
« Reply #4 on: April 05, 2011, 08:49:07 AM »
Submitted without comment in an attempt to solicit honest opinions.  Any thoughts on Lose and his theology in general, or this article in particular?

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/david-lose/is-the-bible-true_b_841949.html?ref=fb&src=sp

Although I've never met him or heard him preach, I've come to value much of his work at workingpreacher.org, which I regularly consult.

In this article written for a secular medium, I appreciated this thought:

[Jules, in Pulp Fiction] asserts that the ultimate criteria of truth isn't factual accuracy but a compelling, even transformative witness. Clearly there are many ways to answer the question of whether the Bible is true. If you are interested primarily in its factual accuracy, then your options are clear and you might as well pick a side. If, however, you're interested in a way out of the stalemate and false dichotomy of the present conservative-liberal debate, then you might join Jules in putting the matter differently. When you read the Bible, that is, do you feel God's touch? Does God get involved?

The ultimate criteria of truth isn't factual accuracy but a compelling, even transformative witness?

So how much has to be "true?" Any of it? does it have to rest on a true event that was embellished or do we get to make it up from scratch? Is the resurrection "true" or is it myth? Is the crucifixion myth? Was Jesus a myth?

The possibilities are endless here.. In the end there is no "truth," only what I passionately hold true. The result is ALPB forums where definitive refutations of errant views are made but the holder of those views never let's it go, since he has anecdotes from his own life or the life of someone who found the errant argument he made in '75 "so compelling."

And is Dr. Lose willing to have a student end a paper with many factual errors or misunderstandings of scholarship with the words: "What I write here has transformed my life and the life of at least one other person I know whose letter attesting that their life was profoundly changed by reading this paper is attached as appendix A, which means that what I write here is compelling and transformative and therefore it is true and deserves an A?"

And why criticize the 30 Year War as Lose does in the beginning of the article or at least use it as an example of why religious truth claims are bad? (a really tiresome and well worn tactic, I might add) After all, these people read the bible and the interpretations of their priest and found them compelling and  transformative, so much so that they were willing to expend an entire generation and more to fight for it?

This is a dead end.
Peter Kruse

Diversity and tolerance are very complex concepts. Rigid conformity is needed to ensure their full realization. - Mike Adams

Charles_Austin

  • Guest
Re: David Lose: Is the Bible True?
« Reply #5 on: April 05, 2011, 08:59:12 AM »
Pastor Culler writes:
So if someone experiences a transforming witness in the Quran does that make Mohammed the prophet of the true God.  If someone experiences a transforming witness from the angel Moroni, does that make Joseph Smith truly the modern day prophet of God.

I comment:
Pastor Culler emits one of those knee-jerk statements, responding to a single post as if it were the only text, only comment, only thing under consideration.
The answer to his question is "no," because Christian theology is not and never has been a "me-and-my-Bible" thing. That which one gets from the Bible is weighed, tested and shared with the Christian community. So unless millions of Christians start affirming that Mohammed or Joseph Smith or Prosper Montagné are prophets of God, people who get all tingly reading the Quran or the Book of Mormon or Larousse Gastronomique will have to understand that there is some other source for what tingles them.

Revbert

  • Guest
Re: David Lose: Is the Bible True?
« Reply #6 on: April 05, 2011, 09:18:14 AM »

The answer to his question is "no," because Christian theology is not and never has been a "me-and-my-Bible" thing. That which one gets from the Bible is weighed, tested and shared with the Christian community. So unless millions of Christians start affirming that Mohammed or Joseph Smith or Prosper Montagné are prophets of God, people who get all tingly reading the Quran or the Book of Mormon or Larousse Gastronomique will have to understand that there is some other source for what tingles them.

Oh Charles, did you REALLY mean to say this????

If this is a true answer, then how in the world can you justify something like the CWA 09 decision on the sexuality statement that says, "There are differing opinions, and all are valid."?

When it suits you, the Bible is the rule and guide. When it is inconvenient, you say that the inconvenience is a misunderstanding of the text by those who thing otherwise than you.

You, sir, are simply a piece of work.

Dan Fienen

  • ALPB Contribution Leader
  • *****
  • Posts: 13369
    • View Profile
Re: David Lose: Is the Bible True?
« Reply #7 on: April 05, 2011, 09:22:14 AM »
What kind of a threshold number or percentage do we need to reach before we need to take seriously whether the Quran makes us all tingly?  For that matter, It seems to me that a majority of Christians alive today (counting just the Roman and Eastern churches, not to mention the other churches and Christians who would agree), literally millions of Christians, the majority of the Christian community reject the new thing that the ELCA, TEC and a few others that committed same sex relationships are just alright with God participants suitable for ordination, to be bishops, etc.  For a number of years it was rejected even within the ELCA.  If it is not just a question of what the Bible says, "Christian theology is not and never has been a "me-and-my-Bible" thing" but what the Christian community says, "That which one gets from the Bible is weighed, tested and shared with the Christian community," does something change from being false to being true when the tipping point is reached and you get a 2/3 vote?  And is it true if only one small corner of the Christian community accepts it while most of the rest rejects it?  (The ELCA is larger than the LCMS, but when world Christianity is concerned it is still small.)  Or is truth community specific?  What is true for this Christian community subset is not true for that one?

Pr. Austin, I am just trying to see how to apply your appeal to truth as community determined to other questions that face Christians.

Dan
Pr. Daniel Fienen
LCMS

Charles_Austin

  • Guest
Re: David Lose: Is the Bible True?
« Reply #8 on: April 05, 2011, 09:32:53 AM »
Pastor Hebbeler writes, re my comment just upstream:
Oh Charles, did you REALLY mean to say this?
I respond:
Yes.

Pastor Hebbeler writes:
If this is a true answer, then how in the world can you justify something like the CWA 09 decision on the sexuality statement that says, "There are differing opinions, and all are valid."?
I comment:
The statement does not say "all are valid." But here's the deal. Millions of Christians (not enough to satisfy some) have tested the ideas in the 2009 document and found them acceptable with how they interpret the Bible. They have concluded that the passages dealing with sexuality are not prohibitive of the kind of sexual relationships currently under discussion.
Then - and I tire of saying this - we need not all agree on every aspect of sexual morality, church order, liturgical form, or biblical geology in order to be in the Church together. Some were as incensed about fellowship with Episcopalians as some are today about the 2009 statement. For them that was enough to break their association with the ELCA.

Pastor Hebbeler:
When it suits you, the Bible is the rule and guide. When it is inconvenient, you say that the inconvenience is a misunderstanding of the text by those who thing otherwise than you.
Me:
Nope. That's not how it works. There are lots of things in scripture I find "inconvenient," like loving one's enemies, forgiving those who would do evil against me, for example.

Pastor Hebbeler:
You, sir, are simply a piece of work.
Me:
I have always found that a curious phrase. But I have generally taken it as an insult and as the declaration that the one who uses it doesn't think much of the "piece of work." O.k.

George Erdner

  • Guest
Re: David Lose: Is the Bible True?
« Reply #9 on: April 05, 2011, 09:36:47 AM »
Why does the issue of the truth of the values taught have to be dependent on the literal accuracy of the illustrations that reveal the values?

And what is the source of the ridiculous idea that truth is determined by the credentials of a man-made institution or by counting the number of adherants to a system of belief?

Charles_Austin

  • Guest
Re: David Lose: Is the Bible True?
« Reply #10 on: April 05, 2011, 09:44:33 AM »
Despite your protestations, Pastor Fienen, you make an appeal to "majority rule."
And I ask again: Which point of doctrine or practice kicks us out the door?
The majority of Christendom over the centuries has had a certain kind of order for the priesthood. We Lutherans do not. "They" say "their" way is endorsed by scripture; we say our way is biblical. The difference in interpretation does not seem to twist as many knickers as does the difference in interpretation on some other things.
And, though I have not though this all the way through, I might be willing to say that some "truth" is indeed community-specific. It is "true" for me that priests can be married and/or female. That is not "true" for some other communities. Their "truth" does not mean that I cannot see them as fellow Christians and join with them in God's mission.

Cnehring

  • Guest
Re: David Lose: Is the Bible True?
« Reply #11 on: April 05, 2011, 09:50:02 AM »
When I had Dr. Lose at Luther (01-05) he was a good, orthodox, confessional teacher. We saw a change in him as he went along, as he began to rise up the "ranks" of academia and of "importance" in the elca.

Steverem

  • ALPB Contribution Leader
  • *****
  • Posts: 1581
    • View Profile
Re: David Lose: Is the Bible True?
« Reply #12 on: April 05, 2011, 09:55:56 AM »
Whoever selected "seven" as the number of posts before the discussion turned into the typical Charles/George lovefest can pick up your prize.  Thanks for playing!

pearson

  • ALPB Contribution Leader
  • *****
  • Posts: 2217
    • View Profile
Re: David Lose: Is the Bible True?
« Reply #13 on: April 05, 2011, 11:21:13 AM »

Submitted without comment in an attempt to solicit honest opinions.  Any thoughts on Lose and his theology in general, or this article in particular?


I found the article puzzling.

For one thing, Lose gets the historical trajectory wrong.  The earliest claim I know of regarding the robust distinction between facts and values comes from David Hume, a century or so after the Thirty Years' War ended.  And in making the distinction, Hume wasn't thinking of any religious wars, but of earlier empiricists like Locke and Berkeley.

More important, for someone who wants to complain about the fact-value distinction (and where "truth" might be located on either side), Lose spends curiously little time disputing it.  He apparently endorses the distinction, but instead of joining Hume in assigning "truth" to facts, when it comes to religion Lose swings the other way, attaching "truth" to values (like the value that comes from "feeling God's touch").  It is the old modernist canard that religion is really about values, so we religious types better figure out a way to smuggle "truth" into our sacred values.

Whatever happened to affirming that the rigid fact-value distinction is simply a false dichotomy, and that "truth" is best defined in some other way?  That common-sense wisdom used to be more prevalent.

Tom Pearson  

Terry W Culler

  • ALPB Contribution Leader
  • *****
  • Posts: 2359
    • View Profile
Re: David Lose: Is the Bible True?
« Reply #14 on: April 05, 2011, 11:34:25 AM »
Charles: I know I do not share the rarified air of the theologically elite, I'm just a country parson as George Herbert would have it, but I confess I can hardly understand your response to me.  The assertion that Truth is fungible and dependent upon the person hearing it is simply nonsense.  And no amount of blather can change it into sense.  Our world is a mess and getting daily messier in part because this "idea" (and believe me I use that word as loosely as possible) is gaining ground amongst those who would lead us.  I think that's because they can say anything they want and not be challenged on it.  I know an ELCA pastor or recent vintage who told me that when he challenged Mormonism in a seminary class his professor responded that his and her faith understanding could not be used to attack the Morman faith understanding.  Now I don't know about you, but in my blue collar family there is a word for that kind of statement that I was taught pastors should avoid using.
Trying to be retired but failing