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Models of Revelation Paperback – September 1, 1992
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One strength of Dulles's book is that he does not merely summarize the positions. He critiques each position, trying to identify both its positive and negative points. This does not mean they are all equal, and his critique of the third and fifth models mentions how they are difficult to reconcile with traditional Christian beliefs. Dulles does not advocate a specific model, nor does he think that the models can simply be combined (since they arrive at different positions on specific questions). Nor does he think creating a sixth model is viable at the present. Instead, he wants to improve upon the models by critiquing them in light of the other models. A clear way forward is not presented. That would be a miraculous feat, to reconcile such diversity!
The first (1) model (Revelation as Doctrine) could be called the conservative or traditional model, which is worked out by both Catholics and Protestants in the 19th century over against the theories of Rationalism. This model sees the Bible as a collection of factually true statements about God and humankind. In some ways it is made official Catholic dogma at the First Vatican Council, though not in a way that totally excludes the following four models. It is also the model generally used by Evangelical Protestants today.
The second (2) model (Revelation as History) is also worked out in the 19th century in deliberate reaction to the first model.Read more ›
He sets up criteria and begins building five philosophies or models of revelation theology that are most commonly embraced by Christians today. These models serve as a great eye-opening tool in the final compare-and-contrast stage of his analysis.
Perhaps more fascinating, Dulles expands his search to include specific historical periods, so that the reader gets a better understanding of how theological thought evolves and changes, as one generation of Christian believers builds on the knowledge or misconceptions of the past, and how meaningful dialogue with historians, scientists and other religious groups have enhanced our traditions and affirmed our convictions.
This book represents a rare opportunity for one of the laity to peer into the mind of a great theologian. One can not help but be impressed.
Dulles does an admirable job of portraying the doctrine of revelation from several viewpoints, so this book should come in handy to anyone interested in the nature and thought of revelation.
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Very Scholarly review of several understandings of Revelation. Fair in most of his assessment. (posted by a conservative Evangelical)Published 21 months ago by Steven E. Ford