Bibelsyn och frälsningslära i John Stotts teologi
Sammanfattning: This thesis is about the theology of the leader of Anglican evangelicalism, John Stott. Throughout this study of evangelical identity, the relationship between the objective belief and the subjective experience is a main thread. An attempt at definition of the Anglican evangelicalism: Theologically, evangelicalism means that the bibliology and the doctrine of salvation have been in the foreground. Evangelical belief is moving between a doctrinal and an experiential pole, but also between a conservative and a liberal pole. The message of salvation: The issue of salvation plays a central role in Stott’s theology. The foundation for his soteriology is Christology. This summarises the objective and the subjective. Our investigation has shown that Christ’s resurrection is, for John Stott, a bridge between the objective and the subjective. In the subjective experience there is an objective element, since the faith is centered on what Christ has done. His interpretation of the atonement stresses the objective, that is, it places salvation in history, outside of man’s subjective experience. Actually, Stott sees three steps – an objective, historical event, described in the Bible, to be experienced today. The authority of the message of salvation: For Stott the revelation has a cognitive side. The Bible records historical events, but it also gives them a divine interpretation. Stott does not accept a situation where a matter will be seen as true in a religious experience, but as false in an objective reality. For Stott, God revealed in Christ is the supreme authority. The Bible should therefore be read for the purpose of salvation and with Christ as a hermeneutic principle. Stott’s bibliology is by himself described as established with belief in Christ as a presupposition. The message of salvation contextualized: Stott wishes to combine the objective and the subjective interpretation in order to achieve a better contextualization but throughout all of this thesis it is made evident that Stott’s view on subjectivity is rather cautious and guarded. He refuses to accept that the Bible is defined, in an absolute way, by culture in its contents and its truth. Stott’s intention has been to point to the constant factor in the teaching of the Bible. It is quite clear that Stott does not deviate from the view that the content of the evangelical doctrine is an obligation. A critical evangelical perspective on the theology of John Stott: For Stott, faith is not only belief in the Bible, but also trust in the Saviour. However, the criterion of truth in its modernistic form brought Stott to a rational theology that did not want to see Christian theology as a subjective undertaking, but as being founded in an objective, historical belief. In the final chapter Stott’s theological inheritance has been assessed and criticised from the point of view of a rising evangelical and pentecostal theology that more manifestly seeks integration. The difference is that Stott has been influenced by the dualistic view of modernity, while the integrative theology attempts to assert evangelical interests in the face of post-modernism. By evangelical standards, Stott was a competent theologian during a couple of crucial decades. He tried to attain sensitivity for certain complicated sections in theology, and he also emphasised the rational feature. However, Stott was not capable of, or interested in, leading evangelical theology into altered cultural and theological circumstances.
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