2007August12, Sunday

Good NPP Article

Posted in Theology at 22:35 by Trey Austin

In Christianity Today this past week, there was a great article on the New Perspective on Paul. It gave a very balanced and helpful summary of what NPP actually is, and it also gave some very helpful critiques of the NPP.

As i have indicated in various contexts (not least of which was to my presbytery before being admitted), i believe the NPP isn’t all bad and that it has a lot to offer NT studies. However, i don’t follow it wholesale, and i fully and completely embrace the “Old Perspective.” This article is great because it shows that the two aren’t necessarily mutually exclusive without overlooking some of the more glaring problems in the NPP.

The author, Simon Gathercole, was a professor at Aberdeen University and recently took up lecturing at Cambridge.

Update:
(HT: Mark Horne)
Andrew Sandlin critiques Gathercole’s weakest point in the article. Gathercole was otherwise keen to point out that decrying “works of the law” is not the same thing as decrying the Law of God itself, which is good and righteous and holy. However, he commits a very Dispensationalistic mistake by pitting Deuteronomy 6:25 against Gospel justification. Even in my original reading of Gathercole’s article, this was the weakest point he made and the point to which i took most exception—though, otherwise, it was a very balanced and insightful argument. Sandlin, though, takes Gathercole to task on his, shall we say, crypto-Lutheranism (perhaps not in the most charitable way, but still, it is a deserved critique of the original critique).

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