Friday, August 29, 2014

Vos: Infinite Care in the Revelation of Our Salvation

The amazing thing about the following statement is that Vos actually said it. The prefatory note says this about the occasion of Vos's Inaugural Address at Princeton: "The Rev. Geerhardus Vos was elected Professor of Biblical Theology in Princeton Theological Seminary at the spring meeting of the Board of Directors, 1893, and assumed the duties of the chair provisionally from September, 1893. His formal induction into the chair took place on Tuesday, May 8, 1894, at 12 o'clock, in the First Presbyterian Church of Princeton."

1894. As James Dennison has pointed out, even at Princeton "the morass of liberal and radical biblical theology was evident not only to the more astute among them, but to the "man in the pew." By the last decade of the nineteenth century, so-called biblical theology of the critical stripe had eviscerated the theology from the Bible."

So when Vos takes aim at dispensing with "objective knowledge", he faces those who were quite adept in the "dispensive" arts:  

"...true religion cannot dispense with a solid basis of objective knowledge of the truth. There is no better means of silencing the supercilious cant that right believing is of small importance in the matter of religion, than by showing what infinite care our Father in heaven has taken to reveal unto us, in the utmost perfection, the knowledge of what He is and does for our salvation." Geerhardus Vos, "The Idea of Biblical Theology as a Science and as a Theological Discipline"; Vos's Inaugural Address as Professor of Biblical Theology in Princeton Theological Seminary, delivered May 8, 1894