A big fat ugly false dichotomy...

A big fat ugly false dichotomy...

... which will probably put in an appearance (on the way to being kicked into the long grass) during the talks I'll be giving at the forthcoming weekend away for the postgraduate students at St Ebbe's Church, Oxford:

"It is not primarily the Bible that is the Word of God, but Jesus Christ. I do not think one could find a single Christian who would dissent from this proposition, for to do so would be to commit what is sometimes called bibliolatry: the elevation of the Bible above Christ himself ... Christians are not those who believe in the Bible, but those who believe in Christ” (John Barton, quoted in Timothy Ward, Words of Life, pp. 12-13).

As so often, Timothy Ward breathes some sanity into the situation:

“We do not have to choose between ‘believing in the Bible’ and ‘believing in Christ’. As Christians we are called upon to do both. In fact one crucial means by which we demonstrate our faith in Christ is by also believing what the Bible says” (Timothy Ward, Words of Life, p. 13, italics original).