Archive for the ‘Nick Norelli’ Category

Norman Geisler’s Systematic Theology

July 24, 2010

Nick Norelli has posted a review of Norman Geisler’s Systematic Theology (link to review). The upshot of his review is that he feels he wasted $75 on the set (retails is apparently about $165). I’m sure that Dr. Geisler especially won’t like that Norelli ends up suggesting that Grudem’s single volume (very hefty, but bound as a single volume) Systematic Theology is better.

Augustine the Inerrantist (and Justin too)

March 19, 2009

Nick Norelli at Rightly Dividing the Word of Truth has an interesting post on Justin Martyr and his view of inerrancy (link). I would, however, respectfully disagree that Justin’s is the strongest statement of inerrancy we see in the early church. I find similarly strong statements in other church fathers, such as in Augustine who affirmed both inerrancy and Sola Scriptura, even while affirming the fallibility of Peter and recognizing that the New Testament was consciously written as Scripture:

5. But he answers, “What did Paul find to criticize in Peter?” What else but what he said himself, what he wrote himself? He himself composed a letter as a record, he left it to posterity to be read in the Church. What can I safely believe in the divine books, if I don’t believe what is written in that letter? It’s an apostolic letter, it’s a canonical letter. It’s a letter from Paul, who labored more than them all; not he, though, but the grace of God with him (1 Cor 15:10). So it’s a letter from the grace of God. And if we recall who was speaking in him, it’s a letter from Christ. Or do you wish, he says, to have experience of the one who is speaking in me, Christ? (2 Cor 13:3). Listen, and fear. He said “experience,” not a pretense. But if you don’t think that’s enough, listen to his own public assertion, in which he even calls God to witness. This is how he started the tale of what he was going to point out, as though foreseeing that there would be some people who queried the truth of it: But what I am writing to you, he said, see before God that I am not lying (Gal. 1:20). So then, when he calls God to witness like that, is he lying, seeing that without any calling of God to witness the mouth that lies, it says, will kill, not the body, but the soul (Wis 1:11)? I beg you, don’t let Paul be killed in the soul for Peter’s sake; they were both killed together in the flesh for Christ’s sake.

Augustine, Sermon 162C, Section 5 (The Works of Augustine, Sermons III/11, New City Press, 1997, p. 169)

I realize that a few people are going to read everything Augustine said in that section and home in on the allusion to Wisdom 1:11, losing track of everything else that was said. I hope that if you’re one of those people you’ll think about re-reading the paragraph, setting that issue aside. Although Augustine does seem to allude to (or even quote from) a verse from the Book of Wisdom, he doesn’t identify that book as the canonical Scriptures here. Instead, the canonical Scriptures being discussed here are Paul’s own epistle to the Galatians.


Why You Shouldn’t Read Anyone Else’s Blog

February 19, 2009

(except mine of course)

If you were expecting a defense of the title of this post (or the sub-title above), you are in for a let-down. It’s not serious. It’s a tongue-in-cheek facetious remark aimed at scolding Mr. Nick Norelli who (in this recent post) just doesn’t get it.

Mr. Norelli makes the claim that “But apparently unless one has read White’s books, listened to his debates, or researched his teaching and/or ministry over the last 20 years then they can’t truly understand the context in which he says anything.” This is just silly. Mr. Norelli goes on to quote the following paragraph from Dr. White:

2) Do not expect the Golden Rule to be applied to you if you are an evangelical. If you are going to address someone like Ehrman, you better do your homework. Read his works, listen to his lectures, study his articles. If you do not, you have nothing to say. However, anyone can comment on what you say as an evangelical without worrying about anything you have ever written or taught over twenty or more years. Just remember, the context of the evangelical is irrelevant; the context of the star-level scholar is all important. Also, it is fair to assume the evangelical believer is ignorant of anything you wish to attribute to them, even if you have no idea whether they are in fact ignorant of those subjects or not.

(emphasis provided by Mr. Norelli)
For some reason, perhaps known only to God, Mr. Norelli has apparently mentally converted “not anything” into “not everything” and/or generalized his comment about people judging his scholarship into a comment about people understanding anything at all that he writes. This too is silly.

I’ll put it in simple terms: “Don’t say Dr. White doesn’t know what he’s talking about if you haven’t done your homework on his background. And if you are going to say that Dr. White doesn’t know what he’s talking about, be prepared to back that up, because he’ll call you on it.”

More specifically, Dr. White has read most of what Ehrman has written, and his opinions of Ehrman’s scholarship are consequently informed, even if one disagrees with them. In contrast, folks who bloviate based on a sentence or fragment thereof, taken in isolation, have an opinion that is uninformed.


Rating the Messiah

January 24, 2008

Nick Norelli makes a good point here, that the statement: “Jesus Christ is Overrated,” is dead wrong. (link)

It’s impossible to overrate Jesus, unless one were to try to make him greater than the Father.

Instead, the second person of the Trinity is consistently underrated. He was despised and rejected; he had no honor in his own country; he came into the world, and unto his own, and was not generally received.

Islam, while even while superstitiously muttering “[may] peace be upon him” underrates the Messiah as merely a great prophet.

Jesus Christ is God in the flesh. It is impossible for us to give Him all the honor and praise he deserves. He is worthy of all our praise, and we are inadequate to the task of giving him what he is due.

Thanks be to God that Jesus Christ’s righteousness will be held to our account, for He honored the Father in all that He did,


On-Line Bibles

January 20, 2008

I’m pleased to announce that the German Bible Society has now made publicly available, via the internet, the text of:

The Hebrew Bible (BHS)
The LXX (Rahlfs/Hanhart)
The Nestle-Aland Critical Greek NT (NA27)
The Vulgate (Weber/Gryson)
and others

Get it here (link)
Thanks to Nick Norelli for bringing it to my attention (link).


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