Home > John's Blogs, New Perspective on Paul, Theology > Preaching the New Perspective (A Response)

Preaching the New Perspective (A Response)

After reading Brian’s post on preaching the new perspective, I wanted to respond. If you’re bored with it (I think I probably am!!) skip this post. I won’t be offended. Much.

1. Brian wrote that “It is about understanding our heritage” and referred to the Old Testament. I agree, but I also think we should think about fundamentalism in the same way. Fundamentalism occurred in reaction to late 19th century mainline protestant liberalism. While it may have been an overreaction, they saved the church from turning into a social club. Many of us (me included) owe a debt of gratitude to those folks, because it was people with a fundamental background that kept preaching the gospel. While everything they did was not perfect, for many of us, they are a part of the very heritage that Brian mentioned. Today, we treat them like the boogie man. We are overreacting to their overreaction.

2. Brian wrote “I believe that this is very relevant because Paul wasn’t countering legalism, he was countering fundamentalism!!” I agree. At the same time, it is still relevant to those of us who are not fundamentalists. Would Paul argue against the many churches today who target specific groups of people (usually, white, upper middle class people with young children)? Do such churches also, by their nature, exclude certain types of people who don’t look like their target demographic? Do the small groups in my church often do the same thing when all the people in the group look alike? I’m just asking.

3. Brian wrote, “It’s in the Academy now but it will come to they pews.” He’s right. If you disagree with the NPP, rest assured, it will eventually be preached. It’s easy to dismiss it as an academic argument, but it greatly influences how we will preach Paul.

Brian’s done a good job on the NPP, I just wanted to add my own thoughts. Thanks, Brian.

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  1. brianmcl
    December 6, 2007 at 2:13 pm

    Your point on #2 is good. So often we think about blatant forms of fundamentalism. However, we probably all have some subtle forms of “fundamentalist activity” that we don’t even realize. We should talk about where this exists in our lives and our church someday.

  1. December 7, 2007 at 4:02 pm

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