Comments: A University Sermon

No mention of the shellfish!

Posted by Alan Marsh at Wednesday, 9 November 2005 at 4:58pm GMT

No wonder she lost the election to the General Synod!

Posted by Peter at Wednesday, 9 November 2005 at 5:15pm GMT

A fine piece of work -- good to see that sensible people are finding their voices on this matter. The only think she left out was the incoherence of the position that people who support the writer of Leviticus on homosexuality are being biblical while people who do not support the writer of Leviticus are not.

Posted by John Wall at Wednesday, 9 November 2005 at 6:17pm GMT

One might wish that previous regius professors had her clarity -- and her balls.

Posted by Andrew Brown at Wednesday, 9 November 2005 at 9:00pm GMT

{Sigh}

Why is it that our serious thinkers (and thoughts, like ECUSA's "To Set Our Hope On Christ") get dismissed with one-liners?

If she's in error, *demonstrate it with coherent arguments* (based in Scripture and Tradition). One-liners do no service to the "orthodoxy" some claim to possess through sole title.

Posted by J. C. Fisher at Wednesday, 9 November 2005 at 10:48pm GMT

This seems to impress those who already share the Rev. Canon's conclusions. It is not much of an argument, though for anyone either neutral or opposed to her conclusions. The assumptions her argument are built upon are presumed to be self evident. They are not. I do share her belief that the church has both divine and human aspects, and that where it has erred it has been because of mistaken beliefs tied to the human side, not the divine.

But Adams doesn't offer any evidence that homosexual relationships are divinely ordained and not simply another error based on our fallen human nature.

She relays a common (but false and unsubatantiated) liberal claim about Abp. Akinola that he is power hungry (desiring to be an Anglican Pope). And the Southern Cone is not imposing some local and abberant belief on the rest of the communion; all they are doing is preaching beliefs as they have always been understood through all ages and cultures of Christians. That what they are preaching is some idiosyncratic belief based largely on their own culture is an absurdity.

In the end, it seems that Adams is calling for each part of the church to follow its own idiosyncratic beliefs. This seems like the perfect recipe to following our fallen human nature instead of God.

Posted by Dave C. at Thursday, 10 November 2005 at 2:12am GMT

Wow. She's really something. I lived in Oxford for several years; if she had been there then I'd have like to have heard her.

On the other hand she probably wasn't Regius Prof yet and I wasn't out yet and oh, coulda woulda shoulda.

Posted by IT at Thursday, 10 November 2005 at 4:40am GMT

The first female Regius Professor of Divinity in the University of Oxford preached an excellent and interesting University Sermon, raising numerous questions for us to reflect upon. At least the innovative professor is to be commended for her candor and courage, although someone should have edited her sermon notes prior to publication. The notes, as they stand now, mirror the poverty of the current U.S. educational system.

Posted by John Henry at Thursday, 10 November 2005 at 5:17am GMT

'When the Church of England takes responsibility for keeping the Anglican communion together, She is continuing to act as the ecclesial wing of a colonizing power, still shouldering “the white man’s burden.”'

Ouch! Brilliant.

Thanks Simon for bringing us these things.

Posted by Augustus Meriwether at Thursday, 10 November 2005 at 6:41am GMT

This is nothing but "liberal" revisionism. Secular anthropology instead of Christian anthropology, and a circle argument that reaches a very post-modern (and therefore outdated) conclusion!

Posted by Peter at Thursday, 10 November 2005 at 3:44pm GMT

Dave C. writes:

"I do share her belief that the church has both divine and human aspects, and that where it has erred it has been because of mistaken beliefs tied to the human side, not the divine."

Not sure I follow you. Regarding the first, is not Christ the head of the church, and therefore is not the church partly divine and partly human? Likewise, does not Augustine regard the chuch as a "mixed body" c.f. City of God?

Regarding the second point, surely you are not asserting that when the church has erred it was because of its divine aspects? Could you be more clear about your objections to the particulars of this point you quoted?

Posted by Robert L at Thursday, 10 November 2005 at 4:47pm GMT

My mistake - I clearly interpolated a 'not' in Dave C's comments that is not there.

Posted by Robert L at Thursday, 10 November 2005 at 11:06pm GMT

Dave C, I appreciate that you seem to have at least taken a little time in engaging the Canon's address---

However:

"all they are doing is preaching beliefs as they have always been understood through all ages and cultures of Christians. That what they are preaching is some idiosyncratic belief based largely on their own culture is an absurdity."

That the Church of the Southern Cone COULD know (and then preach) "beliefs as they have always been understood through ***all*** ages and cultures of Christians" is, in itself, an idiosyncratic belief (call it "the Solipcism of Dave C").

To not recognize the unique perspectives of each Christian in every age, is to subtract the *human dimension* of the Church: in attempting to remove human fallibility ("where it has erred it has been because of mistaken beliefs tied to the human side"), you end up w/ a church that is gnostic.

And that, to me, is absurd.

More light, Lord Christ, bring us all more light!

Posted by J. C. Fisher at Friday, 11 November 2005 at 5:55am GMT

Marilyn McCord Adams believes (like the majority of Christians) that Scripture is both human and divine. Her use of this point is problematic:

(1) Which bits are divine, and how is it that she knows that they are divine?

(2) How is it that the bits that turn out to be 'human' are precisely the bits that early 21st century liberal humanists would wish to be merely human? Who's actually in control here?

Posted by Christopher Shell at Sunday, 13 November 2005 at 6:16pm GMT
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