Identifying Historical/Cultural Blind Spots

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kvanlaan

Puritan Board Doctor
Well, the easy answer is to strip it all down to sola scriptura and go from there. But everyone has cultural issues, even the reformers (take a look at what 'witchcraft' was responsible for, even in Geneva). To me though, that's the great danger - once we start the process of discernment and discount this or that due to 'cultural considerations', we are soon left with a gutted OT/NT because everything is in a cultural context.
 

chuckd

Puritan Board Sophomore
You raise two issues - slavery and contraception. You look to the early church for authority on how to deal with one, but ignore it as to how to deal with the other. Either you should use the Roman Catholic standards of using the traditions of the church to set your standards, or you should use the Biblical standards of the reformed faith. But you shouldn't pick and choose between the two approaches to get the result mandated by the current culture as to one, but not the other.

Well, the easy answer is to strip it all down to sola scriptura and go from there. But everyone has cultural issues, even the reformers (take a look at what 'witchcraft' was responsible for, even in Geneva). To me though, that's the great danger - once we start the process of discernment and discount this or that due to 'cultural considerations', we are soon left with a gutted OT/NT because everything is in a cultural context.

Do your churches practice head coverings? I'm not sure of any Reformed theologian who spoke against them prior to 1900. Luther, Calvin, Knox, etc. all taught to observe it.
 

Pergamum

Ordinary Guy (TM)
Chuck,

Don't forget that Luther, Calvin, Knox, et al were all influenced by culture on the issue of headcoverings, too.
 

py3ak

They're stalling and plotting against me
Staff member
Calvin, at any rate, taught it as a point of decorum, not an intrinsically necessary point. Consider his words about men not covering their heads.

Let us, however, bear in mind, that in this matter the error is merely in so far as decorum is violated, and the distinction of rank which God has
established, is broken in upon. For we must not be so scrupulous as to look upon it as a criminal thing for a teacher to have a cap on his head,
when addressing the people from the pulpit. Paul means nothing more than this — that it should appear that the man has authority, and that the
woman is under subjection, and this is secured when the man uncovers his head in the view of the Church, though he should afterwards put on his
cap again from fear of catching cold. In fine, the one rule to be observed here is to prepon — decorum. If that is secured, Paul requires nothing
farther.
 

chuckd

Puritan Board Sophomore
Chuck,

Don't forget that Luther, Calvin, Knox, et al were all influenced by culture on the issue of headcoverings, too.

I'm not sure what you mean, but I'm just identifying cultural blind spots. Meaning headcoverings were observed by [most-all] theologians prior to the 20th century. In the 20th century, the understanding of 1 Cor. 11 shifted to headcoverings as being a specific, cultural observance of the 1st century church, maybe Corinth alone, and not binding for today's church. This to me is a cultural blind spot. To me, it's obvious that today's theologians have been influenced by feminism.

Now, whether or not headcoverings should or should not be observed, whether feminism did good things in our understanding for certain passages, or whether we'll ever know these questions on this side of eternity is beyond me and (I thought) not the point of this thread. We are simply identifying cultural blind spots.

Another huge cultural blind spot is America's obsession with individual liberty. Bill of Rights, get the government out of my life, Republican v. Democratic propaganda, is not only in the news, but within conversations in the church. When I hear about taxes, individual liberty, personal "rights", etc. from others in the church, I wonder if they came to their conclusions based on a careful exegesis of some specific passage or if it is only American culture speaking.

What Reformed theologians have spoken against head covering since 1900?

Granted...poor choice of wording. Most hold that the tradition is not binding anymore.

Calvin, at any rate, taught it as a point of decorum, not an intrinsically necessary point. Consider his words about men not covering their heads.

haha..."catching a cold." Is this from his same sermon that he discusses the natural end of women uncovering her head is uncovering her breasts? :doh:
 

py3ak

They're stalling and plotting against me
Staff member
haha..."catching a cold." Is this from his same sermon that he discusses the natural end of women uncovering her head is uncovering her breasts?

It's from his commentary on 1 Corinthians.
 
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