Day: 2 July 2010

restful fridays with Ridderbos

Several bloggers in the digital sphere commit a single day of the week to quoting from various scholars.  Nick Norelli, over at Rightly Dividing the Word of Truth has a short list of those involved in this.  (Diglotting has recently begun a ‘Mondays with Moltmann’ series, which has been quite good). 

The standard MO for these kinds of posts has been to find a scholar whose surname fits with the day chosen–see Diglotting’s choice as an example–as well as state a basic reason for choosing the scholar or why that scholar’s work is being singled out.  From then on, the posts tend to be quotations from either single works or different works by that scholar, and then the occasional comment is supplied by the blogger to flesh out the details of the quote. 

My problem is that several of the scholars I considered simply do not match the name-day pattern, so I tweaked things a bit in order to make it work for my choice–hence: ‘restful Fridays with Ribberbos.’

Part of the reason for choosing Herman Ridderbos is because I am currently making my way through his delineating tome on Paul’s theology (1975; repr. 1997), so his comments/ideas are fresh in my mind.  Another reason is because I think he is a scholar who tends to be overlooked or at least not considered as frequently, but I cannot yet tell why this is the case.  (If anyone knows, I would be more than happy to hear from you). 

From what I can tell so far, Ridderbos has a firm grasp on theology in general, Paul’s theology in particular and he is not afraid to go toe-to-toe with competing perspectives.  He confronts these other perspectives not because they are divergent from his own; he confronts them because he sees discrepancies between the methods used to study Paul and how Paul presents himself and his ideas, teachings, beliefs, etc.  Moreover, Ridderbos recognises crucial flaws in these methods as they are used to formulate perspectives on Paul; after all, flawed methods produce flawed conclusions.   

With my choice of scholar and my reasons for singling him out in place, here is the first installment for this series of posts (and I’ll leave this one hanging in the air for now–i.e. no comment from me):

[For the follower of Christ:] In the new obedience the new life must become evident, and without the former the latter cannot exist.

-Ridderbos, Paul: An Outline of His Theology, 256