Tuesday, 23 January 2007

Schleiermacher on dogmatics

I have been reading Schleiermacher’s delightful little book, On the Glaubenslehre: Two Letters to Dr Lücke [1829] (Atlanta: Scholars Press, 1981). Here are a few quotes about the nature of Christian dogmatics:

“[One position] understands dogmatics to be a conjoining of the ideas from which piety should then emerge. Or perhaps dogmatics is expected to prove these ideas…. But I know nothing about such ideas and even less about proofs for them, and I do not know where a dogmatics would come from unless piety were already present.” (pp. 41-42)

“[A] doctrine of God that takes its colors primarily from the pre-Christian era and derives its layout from some philosophical school cannot be accepted as a valid and correct exposition of Christian consciousness.” (p. 53)

“[T]he verse John 1:14 is the basic text for all dogmatics, just as it should be for the conduct of the ministry as a whole.” (p. 59)

2 Comments:

Shane said...

“[A] doctrine of God that takes its colors primarily from the pre-Christian era and derives its layout from some philosophical school cannot be accepted as a valid and correct exposition of Christian consciousness.” (p. 53)

Why does Schleiermacher say this? Whom does he have in mind?

Mark McDowell said...

What's interesting, is that in his sermons, Schleiermacher almost always emphasizes the last part of the verse ("and dwelt among us") rather than the first ("and the Word became flesh"). From this angle, it really gives a different picture of the last quote.

Looking forward to touching base with you soon Ben. Blessings

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