Tuesday, May 31, 2011

The Case of Eta Linneamann

Here is a review of one of Linneamann's books.

6 comments:

Doctor Logic said...

"Then, through some of her students and a loving, gospel-preaching church family, Eta Linnemann turned from her "dead works," as she learned to consider them, to Christ. Linnemann’s conversion led her to reevaluate radically her own work in the tradition of historical criticism."

Gosh, I thought it was going to say she was persuaded by actual arguments.

Anonymous said...

Gosh, I thought it was going to say she was persuaded by actual arguments.

"as she learned to consider them", "radically reevaluate".

Sounds like she did.

Anonymous said...

Anon., the Doctor's not being very logical.

Edward T. Babinski said...

Eta Linneamann wants to believe the Gospels were composed based on independent eyewitness testimony. But her arguments have convinced very few NT scholars. The three synoptic Gospels share double and triple traditions of stories, with many shared lines. While the fourth Gospel is not even considered by Evangelical scholars to feature the literal words of Jesus, but a theologically enhanced interpretation.

I'm unsure where she stands on the question of Markan priority, the evidence for which even a lot of Evangelicals accept, from William Lane Craig to Tim McGrew.

Edward T. Babinski said...

Linneamann also came in for some criticism by the two Evangelical scholars who argued in favor of Markan priority in the book, Three Views on the Origins of the Synoptic Gospels http://www.amazon.com/Three-Views-Origins-Synoptic-Gospels/dp/0825438381 The book's intro also points out that Evangelical's have grown to adopt Markan priority since the 1990s, no longer simply eschewing it as the result of "modernism," but admitting it is quite a good hypothesis based on the evidence. It is defended pretty ably and succinctly in the above book. Also, Goodacre of New Testament Gateway has recently put his own book on The Synoptic Problem online that also is quite good. http://www.ntgateway.com/the-synoptic-problem-a-way-through-the-maze/ Goodacre doubts that Matthew and Luke both worked from a separate document, "Q," but that question does not affect his arguments in favor of Markan priority.

Gregory said...

Babinski writes:

Eta Linneamann wants to believe the Gospels were composed based on independent eyewitness testimony. But her arguments have convinced very few NT scholars. The three synoptic Gospels share double and triple traditions of stories, with many shared lines. While the fourth Gospel is not even considered by Evangelical scholars to feature the literal words of Jesus, but a theologically enhanced interpretation.

The conclusions that Babinski has reached is, itself, based on "double and triple traditions of stories" told by the higher critics themselves. In fact, the 19th Century German schools of criticism--and it's offspring--have created a self-contained "tradition" of it's own. What's more, deconstructing this nearly 200 year old "tradition" of Biblical scholarship into many-tiered layers of plagiarization--complete with "connect-the-dots" footnotes within the tradition, traces of conceptual dependence and literary overlapping--would make for an interesting study in it's own right. Don't you think? A higher criticism of "Higher Criticism".

As to Linneamann's point about "ideology" tainting the discipline of "higher critical scholarship", it can be illustrated thus:

Why not consider that the N.T. was written about actual events--including the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ--penned by some of His historical contemporaries?

It is by the affirmations or denials of N.T. historicity which, ultimately, vindicates her main contention...even if the denials should turn out to be correct. But, for those who deny the historical underpinnings of the N.T., a difficult question remains:

Why did this controversy take 1800 years--after the fact--to surface, if the New Testament was plainly a fabrication of some myth-maker/s during it's inception? And, how did Christianity remain credible in the face of heavy political and spiritual antagonism throughout the Centuries?

Although it isn't directly addressing this particular issue, Charles Taylor's "A Secular Age" gives a thorough answer to it.