Any thoughts on Stanley Haurwas?

Discussion in 'Theological Forum' started by jwright82, Jul 17, 2019.

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  1. jwright82

    jwright82 Puritan Board Senior

    I've studied him a little bit but what do y'all think about his theology, either and/or general and/or specific thoughts or criticisms? Haurwas that is?
     
  2. BayouHuguenot

    BayouHuguenot Puritan Board Doctor

    Good writer. All the problems with pacificism and anabaptism apply to him. I like him, though. Make sure to read Hannah Child or listen to the audio he gave on it. His first wife was either insane or demon-possessed.
     
  3. jwright82

    jwright82 Puritan Board Senior

    Yeah, as much as I respect pacifists and a sort of Anabaptist view of the state, no offense to anyone of my brothers and/or sisters here who lean that way, I find it hard for him with any intellectual integrity to sit behind our military protecting him and denouncing the whole thing. Although he does raise interesting questions, like what should the church's response be to war and violence (not only in general and particular instances) ? Where does our ultimate allegence lye, with Christ or with some state, of anykind?? Even though I disagree with him, I think a sober and humble response ought to be given to such questions. He may only be good at raising questions, but they're worth asking.

    Piggybacking off James K.A Smith should churches be proclaiming the pledge of allegiance or the apostle's creed every Sunday, and some churches do both?
     
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2019
  4. BayouHuguenot

    BayouHuguenot Puritan Board Doctor

    Two different issues. I can't imagine any sane reason for saying the pledge in church. I'm all for saying the Apostles' Creed, though.
     
  5. jwright82

    jwright82 Puritan Board Senior

    True, but if I remember correctly he was piggybacking of Haurwas when he wrote it. Maybe it's just a refining of Haurwas, but his thought in general. And it may be a southern thing but I've been in good well meaning churches that have done just that. It's the questions I like, not always the answers.
     
  6. jwright82

    jwright82 Puritan Board Senior

    I also like his criticism of modernity, although I wish he would have taken it in a pressupossitional direction. There's an essay I have alluding to this I will post when I get home from work, duty calls and bills have to be paid.
     
  7. BayouHuguenot

    BayouHuguenot Puritan Board Doctor

    If I recall from Grain of the Universe he holds to Barth's critique of natural theology.
     
  8. jwright82

    jwright82 Puritan Board Senior

    Yeah I believe. I used to have that book. He liked Niebur, hope I spelled that write. In the end he called the church to be a wittnes to the world of Christianity if it were true. Boenhoffer might have been in there too. Interesting but not the best.

    I can't remember if he outright regected it, natural theology, or what. I think he thought, if true, it was worthless. Don't quote me on that though.
     
  9. BayouHuguenot

    BayouHuguenot Puritan Board Doctor

    While I reject Peter Leithart's theology, his commentary on "Stanley the Prophet" is pretty funny.

    Once there was a prophet named Stanley. He was a bold and faithful man who stood against the powers of the age.

    You cannot do that, he would say to the King. You are going to end up in hell and people are going to hate you.

    One day the king began to listen and see the wisdom of Stanley's words. When Stanley told him that the weak must be protected from the vicious strong, the king took steps to protect the weak. When Stanley told him that Jesus was Lord, the king bowed his knee. When Stanley told him that "religious freedom" is an idol from the Enlightenment, the king took heed.

    And the king made a proclamation, that all in his kingdom should weak sackcloth and ashes and repent of their sins, even to the beast of burden.

    And Stanely went out from the city and made a shelter and sat under it and refused to speak again to the king.

    "Lord, please take my life from me, for death is better to me than life. I am a prophet, not a chaplain."

    And the Lord said, "Do you have good reason to be angry?"

    As for the king, he was greatly confused and knew not what to do; for he had done all that Stanley had asked.
     
  10. jwright82

    jwright82 Puritan Board Senior

    I like, thanks for sharing. Again I like the questions he asks, not all the answers. Should it not be asked where our allegiance really lyes, with Christ or with a state that shouldn't be Christian but tries to be Lord? Again I'm pretty much 2 kingdom but a healthy dose Haurwas and Smith might leave us asking good questions? Not our theory but our practice might determine where our hearts really lye. Even Rome, a la Romans 13, was terrible to Christians, and was pagan to the hilt. How does democracy do us any better? Just thoughts.
     
  11. BayouHuguenot

    BayouHuguenot Puritan Board Doctor

    The only problem I have withthem is that Leithart, Smith, Hauerwas and maybe Milbank say the church is the only true polis, which is explicitly contradicted in Scripture.
     
  12. BayouHuguenot

    BayouHuguenot Puritan Board Doctor

    One reason why we Christians argue so much about which hymn to sing, which liturgy to follow, which way to worship is that the commandments teach us to believe that bad liturgy eventually leads to bad ethics. You begin by singing some sappy, sentimental hymn, then you pray some pointless prayer, and the next thing you know you have murdered your best friend. Stanley Hauerwas
     
  13. jwright82

    jwright82 Puritan Board Senior

    About the true polos thing, I think at least for Smith, the church reflects the true polis. I could be wrong but that is slightly different. But it has a certain overlap, only a certain overlap, between him (Haurwas?) And 2 kingdom people about the church being the church first. But it's the point that is different. One sees a political point also, or at least partly political, the other a spiritual point only, with maybe a political point somewhere. Worth exploring.
    I think for instance there maybe a better way of mixing 2 kingdom thought with Smith and maybe H aurwas on Christ and culture. I'm only exploring it though.
     
  14. BayouHuguenot

    BayouHuguenot Puritan Board Doctor

    Smith's thinking has evolved somewhat. He used to be in with the Yoderian pacifist crowd, which is unbiblical. But the more he read Oliver O'Donovan, the more untenable he saw that view.

    As to the true polis: if one wants to say that there are two poleis, but the church is the better one--that's fine. I don't think that is what the Radical Orthodoxy crowd is saying. Hans Boersma wrote a great essay on Milbank on this point. I'll try to find it.
     
  15. jwright82

    jwright82 Puritan Board Senior

    I yeah he has evolved, have you read "Awaiting the King" by Smith? It's a bit confusing, he doesn't seem to (I could be missing it) all the threads he wants to group together. Thanks, I look forward to reading it!
    Yeah these are just thoughts I've been trying to weave together.
     
  16. BayouHuguenot

    BayouHuguenot Puritan Board Doctor

    I haven't. I've listened to some of his talks. I think he gets Augustine correct. I think he gets Oliver O'Donovan correct. He likes both. Problem: both men liked (or at least appreciated) Christendom. He can't have it both ways.
     
  17. jwright82

    jwright82 Puritan Board Senior

    Right. My point about it being confusing. I'm reread it again soon and see if it doesn't make more sense. It just seemed like he couldn't, or wouldn't, come down somewhere in the whole debate. By the end I was left asking where do you stand then?
     
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