Posted by: Billy Marsh | February 5, 2008

Quotes On Christ And Scripture

In an email the other day, I wrote to a friend, telling him that reading Kevin J. Vanhoozer’s, The Drama of Doctrine, is like candy to me. Honestly, I truly believe that if I had a whole day without any duties and interruptions, I could sit down and read his massive work from beginning to end without stopping. Often, non-fiction books are not described this way, but Vanhoozer has definitely penned a real “page-turner”. Most people either love him or hate him; and the rest don’t know what to do with him. But, for me, Vanhoozer is the theologian who is currently writing and teaching on the very issues that are the foremost concerns of my heart right now, especially with respect to the nature of doctrine, postmodern hermeneutics, and theological interpretation.

The Drama of Doctrine

Here’s a brief quote from his bright orange book, that after I read it, was blown away by how concisely and eloquently he was able to state exactly what I have been working towards in my own theological method with reference to Christ’s bearing upon the Scriptures. For more of what I have been testing and studying on the topic of Christ and the Scriptures, click here to view my recent paper, “A Christocentric Theological Method“. Along with Vanhoozer’s quotes, I’ve also provided two other passages that I’ve stumbled upon in my personal reading that touch on the same issue.

The economy of the gospel involves revelation and redemption alike: (1) Jesus “exegetes” the Father; (2) the apostolic testimony, preserved by writing in Scripture, “exegetes” Jesus; (3) preachers and theologians exegete the Scriptures that bear witness to Christ. The purpose of all this exegesis, and hence of Scripture itself, is not to displace Christ but to serve as the means for offering appropriately “thick descriptions” of him. The Bible is the means by which the apostolic memory of what God was doing in Christ is given specificity and substance. For, as Calvin rightly says, the only Christ we have is the Christ of the Scriptures. Hence the ground of Scripture’s indispensible role in the economy of the gospel is ultimately christological. The Bible–not only the Gospels but all of Scripture–is the (divinely) authorized version of the gospel, the necessary framework for understanding what God was doing in Jesus Christ. Scripture is the voice of God that articulates the Word of God: Jesus Christ (46).

~ Kevin J. Vanhoozer, The Drama of Doctrine: A Canonical-Linguistic Approach to Christian Theology

Let it be affirmed right away that the central theme of both the Old and New Testaments is Christ. Did not our Lord rebuke the two disciples on the road to Emmaus on that first Easter Sunday afternoon for their failure to understand that he was the one to whom all the Law, Prophets, and Writings pointed (Luke 24:25-27; p. 41)?

~ Walter C. Kaiser Jr., Preaching and Teaching from the Old Testament: A Guide for the Church

Nor was Christ sent into the world for any other ministry except that of the Word. Moreover, the entire spiritual estate–all the apostles, bishops, and priests–has been called and instituted only for the ministry of the Word. . . . The Word is the gospel of God concerning his Son, who was made flesh, suffered, rose from the dead, and was glorified through the Spirit who sanctifies (6-7, “Facets” translation).

~ Martin Luther, On Christian Liberty



  1. Billy, I find these quotes quite interesting, and very sweet, especially in some of the things I have been trying to communicate in my own reflections on “doing” theology. Blessings, my brother.

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