Can anything good be said about the theological method of Charles Hodge? In response to Kevin Vanhoozer, Paul Helm offers a spirited defence of Hodge’s notorious method of “inductive” biblicism. (Thanks to Exiled Preacher for the tip.)
I would contend Yes; and Helm's article is indeed a good one. I am surprised about Dr. Vanhoozer's charges against Hodge. To me, they just seem ridiculous (what?? subject/object?? propositionalism??? gimme a break!)In my opinion, an inductive method like Hodge's is the best way for doing dogmatics.
Defend Hodge? No, no, no! For one thing, I blame Hodge for infecting Baptists in the South with Scholastic Calvinism. You see, two of the founding professors of the original Southern Baptist Seminary in Louisville, James P. Boyce and Basil Manley, Jr., studied with Hodge--and imported his method and his theology (except for baptism and church order, of course)! ARRGH! There had, of course, always been a significant Reformed strand to Baptist life and thought (along with the Anabaptist strand). But with Hodge, Baptists South of the Mason-Dixon line got the horrible Calvinist scholasticism that has led to the recent captivity of fundamentalism. No, nothing good can be said.
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