While we’re on the topic of seminary reflections, two very well known, yet neglected by me, authors have made it heavily into my reading rotation. I am speaking of course about N. T. Wright and John Frame.
In many ways, at least to me, they are kindred spirits. One is a world class New Testament scholar and exegete and the other is a superb theologian philosopher (or philosopher theologian). Yet both have many stones thrown at them by other people in the Reformed world for much the same reason.
They both are raising questions about how we read the Bible (primarily Wright, but also Frame) and how we both do theology and how live out our faith (primarily Frame, but also Wright to a large extent). Both though are providing well thought out scholarly answers centered on the text of Scripture with a pastor’s tone and heart.
Frame, for his part challenges many assumptions in the Reformed tradition and seems to be thinking theology through in fresh ways there are still operating within traditional Christian doctrine. He’s not trying to re-invent the wheel, but he is helping you look at things from a new perspective or two, or better yet three.
Wright is doing his fair share of tradition challenging, mainly in regards to how we are interpreting the apostle Paul, but his massive Christian Origins and the Question of God series (still very much underway) is no small matter either. To borrow Wright’s own analogy from Justification, he’s not really trying to reinvent the wheel either, but is trying help you see that the car is just about the wheel, as important as that itself might be.
Both writers have been immensely helpful to me this last semester of seminary and I’m glad in some ways I’ve only started really reading them now (although I wish I had read Frame’s Doctrine of the Knowledge of God during my first year). Frame in some ways has been prepatory for me reading Wright since Frame’s insistence on looking at things from multiple perspectives has allowed me to hold the New Perspective on Paul in some tension with the Old one as I try to navigate which one is handling the text better on which points.
All that to say, I would really recommend both authors to you, not because everything they say is gospel truth, but because they are both trying to faithfully interpret and apply the word of God to our contemporary culture and they are both doing so in fresh, yet faithful ways.
Of the two writers, here are the books I’ve been working through that I would recommend:
- Doctrine of the Knowledge of God
- Doctrine of God
- Doctrine of the Christian Life
- Doctrine of the Word of God
- Apologetics to the Glory of God
- Speaking the Truth in Love