Student presentation Luke 3:1-20.

I don’t want to get into the content of the presentation. Because this is not the place for that.

Regarding my PhD… which is the subject of this discourse… I find Dr. Cor’s comments quite helpful.

I had told him that I fear that my ‘theology’ tends to come before my biblical studies, and I have plenty of ideas from the text, which often are not tested, and not certainly not justified. I also told him that I valued this greek module because it showed me how to test and measure my ideas biblically.

He however added that in ‘academic scholarship’; there is need for ideas as well; and it is not always the place for the one coming up with ideas to defend/test them. In effect, if a person came up with many ideas from the text, many interesting meanings, he/she could present them to the world in his/her own way, and that could be defended/opposed by someone else. The world benefits/needs these ideas.

Just hearing that was extremely affirming. And suddenly, while I value this exegetical emphasis, I feel less terrible about my ‘creative’ theological thinking. It is true that we all need each other to help sharpen each other. It is not for me to develop the perfect system/meaning for all… I can present a perspective which then helps/shapes other systems.

I think the fear of being wrong has trapped many theologians from experimenting/thinking afresh. Plus, because we’re trapped within the evangelical framework, whatever that means, we tend to limit our theology to certain ideas and anything different must be made to fit.

This alternative vision perhaps is more suited for the way I think the body of Christ should operate. In dialogue with each other/in understanding difference… knowing that doctrine is not the most important thing that binds us, but rather, relationship with Christ.