Monday, February 23, 2004

This weekend, we attended a Bible Conference featuring James White. It was a last-minute addition to our schedule, since I found out about it last Tuesday. And, even though it was way out in the boonies, it was free - which is always the right price. :) Although we had some difficulties finding the church (Faith Community Church, a small Reformed SBC church in Woodstock, GA), we did make it in time to hear Dr. White's first session.

Overall, I enjoy his work. The Friday evening sessions dealt with Bible Translations, primarily focused on the KJV-Only crowd. White's The King James Only Controversy was the first of his books that I read (several years back), and I think he does a good job with the material. He's a pretty engaging speaker, and I thought his presentation was really good on this subject.

Saturday's sessions dealt with "The Justification of God." Unfortunately, we had to miss the morning sessions due to an Apartment Life breakfast, but we did get to hear the recordings. The first one was good. He began with an overview and brought up The Passion of the Christ, including some of the lesser known (at least in Evangelical circles) aspects of Mel's "uber-Catholicism." It wasn't anything new for me, but it did serve as a good segue into the historic differences in justification theology between Catholics and Protestants, and even among modern Protestants. We haven't finished listening to the recording of the 2nd morning session, but I imagine it continued to discuss the idea of imputation, etc.

We did make it up to the church for the Saturday afternoon sessions, after a stop at the Woodstock location of our beloved Slope's BBQ. We were early for the session, so we talked with the guy running the book table. The book tables at conferences like this are always a bizarre sight, at least for me. I'm just not used to seeing stacks of books by guys like White, John Piper, Doug Wilson, etc in one location - with not a single Purpose Driven Life in sight. It's bizarre, but in a good way. I also scored a copy of Early Christian Doctrine at the used book table. It has been on my wish list for awhile, so I'm pretty pumped.

Anyway, the first afternoon session dealt with "New Perspective-ism" (I'm not sure that's even a real word ... but he kept using it.) This is one area that I think White hasn't done a good job covering. I posted some over on the Andy Peterson Board, but basically, White (like so many others) has seemingly lumped all the NPP folks into a single pot, even though he did address the divergence in opinions and views among the people considered part of the "movement." He spoke specifically about Sanders and that arch-fiend N.T. Wright. Granted, I still have more reading to do on what Wright has actually said, but from the bits I've read, I continue to confirm my suspicions that his critics aren't addressing what he's actually said.

The final session was Q&A, and was compressed due to time constraints. Most of the questions dealt with Bible translations, difficulties, etc, but White did a good job answering them.

No comments:

Post a Comment