Category Archives: Scott R. Swain
And the hits keep on coming from Swain in Trinity, Revelation, and Reading:
Because of biblical interpretation is an act of covenant mutuality, a living in engagement with the living God through his living in Christ, biblical interpretation is always personal. As interpreters, we are always making decisions either for or against the truth, promises, and commands of a given text. There is no neutrality here. We are either in the process of further embracing Scripture’s truth, promises, and commands or we are in the process of distancing ourselves from them. We are either bringing ourselves into further conformity to God’s word or we are slowly drifting away from that which we have read and heard (cf. Heb. 2.1-4).The timing of biblical application therefore is always “Today” (see Heb. 3.7-4.13).
– Scott R. Swain, Trinity, Revelation, and Reading, 134.
“These emissaries [the prophets and apostle of Scripture] are uniquely qualified to fulfill the commission [of being divinely authorized spokesmen for God] by virtue of their unique access to God’s counsel (Jer. 23.18, 22) and by virtue of the unique anointing with the God’s Spirit (Isa. 61.1)… The prophets and apostles are thus fitted to bear the eternal Word of God, who ever lives at the Father’s side (access) and who comes forth into the world in the fullness of the Spirit’s power (anointing) to make the Father known (Jn.1.1,18; 3.34; cf. Isa. 55.10-11).”
I’m presently working through Trinity, Revelation, and Reading: A Theological Introduction to the Bible and it’s Interpretation, the latest volume by my former seminary professor Dr. Scott Swain. It’s fairly small in size, but packs a strong punch. I plan on pulling some quotes to post over the next few days, just to give you a taste of the gems found therein.
Here’s a sample where Swain discusses the link between God’s self-disclosure in both Old Covenant and the New:
The progressive nature of revelation does not suggest evolution from more “primitive” to more “sophisticated” stages in humanity’s knowledge of God, of redemption, and of itself. Nor do earlier stages of revelation require correction or augmentation by later stages of revelation. Contrary to every form of Marcionism that has plagued the history of Christianity, it is the same God who makes himself known to Israel and to the church. Moreover, Jesus, God supreme self – revelation and final word (cf. Heb. 1.1-4), did not come to abolish earlier revelation but the fulfill it (Mt. 5:17-19). Even those institutions that are abrogated in the new covenant (e.g., the Levitical priesthood, the Temple cult, etc.) serve as tokens, promissory notes of the final institutions that Christ came to establish, and therefore function as paradigms – indispensable models – understanding those institutions. As such, they are never truly left behind but are rather incorporated into the brilliant mosaic of New Covenant revelation. Each stage of God’s revelation thus represents God’s wholly reliable redemptive truth, tempered to that stage of redemption by the Divine Rhetor, and therefore profitable in its own rights for imparting the wisdom that leads to salvation through faith in Jesus Christ and to a life that is pleasing to God (2 Tim. 3.15-17).