campus wide alert

College News

Scripture as the Human Word of God: Why Faith Contradicts Inerrancy

November 09, 2009

Category: Academics, Events


A brief quiz in preparation for the next Catawba College Community Forum:

 If you believe the Bible is inerrant, then you may be:
  (a)  a Defender of the Faith.
  (b)  stuck in a Modernist rut.
  (c)  the Antichrist.

Christopher R. Hutson, Associate Professor of New Testament and Associate Dean for Extension Programs at Hood Theological Seminary, will offer his answer to this question at the next Catawba College Community Forum. Professor Hutson has also taught at Yale Divinity School and St. Xavier University in Chicago. He holds the PhD in New Testament Studies from Yale University, having completed prior degrees at Lipscomb University, the University of Cincinnati and Yale Divinity School. His research focuses on the cultural context of the New Testament, especially of Paul, and on the application of New Testament texts to contemporary contexts and social issues. He is the author of First Corinthians: A Community Not of This Age (Leafwood Press, 2003) and "1 Corinthians" and "1-2 Thessalonians" in The Transforming Word: One-Volume Commentary on the Bible (ACU Press, 2009). Professor Hutson leads a regular adult Bible study group at the Central Church of Christ in Salisbury.

"What do we mean when we refer to Scripture as the 'word of God?'" Dr. Hutson asks. "The question is not whether God speaks but how God speaks."  In his presentation, Dr. Hutson will seek to move beyond the old Fundamentalist-Modernist debates about whether scientific or historical analysis "proves" or "disproves" the Bible. "If there are skeptics in the audience," he notes,  "I invite them to consider whether I offer a more coherent theological description of the Bible than they may have heard before. But, on the other hand, if there are believers in the audience who have confronted problems of imperfections in the Bible (scientific or historical errors or contradictions between texts), I invite them to consider whether acknowledging such problems means that they must abandon faith, whether Christianity must fall to the ground because the Bible is somehow not 'true.'"

Dr. Hutson will discuss this issue in depth at the next Catawba College Community Forum: 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, November 17, 2009 in Tom Smith Auditorium of Ralph W. Ketner Hall on the campus of Catawba College. Admission, as always, is free.