Seminary started up again today – in one of my classes, Theology II, a quote was mentioned that I wanted to share. It has to do with tradition, and the knowability of the truth of Christianity as we have it today.
Harold O. J. Brown’s book Heresies: The Image of Christ in the Mirror of Heresy and Orthodoxy from the Apostles to the Present (Doubleday, 1984):
“The history of Christian theology is in large part a history of heresies because Jesus and the claims he made, as well as the claims his disciples made about him, seemed to be incredible” (p. xxiii).
“Men and women as different as the lawyer Tertullian and the Empress-Mother Helena, the scholarly Origen and the diplomatic Catherine of Siena, the elegant Anselm, stolid Aquinas, bellicose Luther, and austere Calvin, and also the industrious Spener, tender Zinzendorf, and energetic John Wesley, knew far too much the same Jesus Christ for him to be a counterfeit fashioned from scholars’ theses or debaters’ points. Out of the confusion [of his search for the pure church and clear doctrine], in fact, there emerged a figure of Jesus Christ substantial, compelling, and believable; indeed, not only believable, but sufficiently clear and coherent so that one can truly say, believed by Christians through the centuries” (p. xv).
Some food for thought.