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ISBN/ASIN : 0310392810
Manufacturer : Zondervan|
Release data : 07 May, 1980
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Geisler is a fundamentalist theologian who has written numerous apologetical and theological works. I will admit I'm strongly prejudiced against fundamentalism, but this theologian even actively takes creation science (the belief the Earth and universe are 10,000 years old) seriously and tries to dismiss any science which disagrees with this theological view.
He is familiar with Christian theological tradition, but on the whole, his works which try to prove fundamentalist dogmas are entirely unconvincing.
I had to purchase and read this book for a seminary class that I took this past year. To be quite frank, I was very disappointed with it. There are only a few essays in the book that show substantial scholarship and solid writing (e.g. Walter Kaiser Jr.'s). Most of them tend to be reactionary in tone and contribute little to the discussion of inerrancy. I was especially frustrated by the ad hominem attacks on men like G. C. Berkouwer (c.f. Krabbendam's essay where he essentially says that Berkouwer either must have been living in great sin or not been a Christian to hold such a view of inerrancy).
A second problem I had with the book was its naive reliance upon Enlightenment philosophical categories to define the term "inerrancy." Most of the writers implicitly seemed to think that for something to be true it has to be "scientifically accurate" (granted, they would probably deny this; however, the underpinnings of Scottish Common Sense Philosophy are clearly there). The result is that the contributors often miss the point of the teleological thrust of Scripture. They are so concerned about proving the Bible to be a coherent, rational scientific text-book that they seldom stop to ask the questions: "what is the purpose of the Biblical text?" and "am I imposing an unwarranted philosophical framework upon the text which leads to unnecessary problems and dilemmas?"
In conclusion, I was also frustrated by the lack of real engagement with the topic. Most of the authors set up weak straw men of their opponents and talked past the real issues. As noted above the last essay by Henry Krabbendam degenerated into an ad hominem fist fight. While I understand why the authors are determined to defend their version of inerrancy (i.e. they are worried that Christianity will crumble from within if the God breathed character of Scripture is abandoned), I was still disappointed by what I perceived to be a mis-handling of the issues (compare the responses in this book to Millard Erickson's irenic, thoughtful discusion of inerrancy in his book Christian Theology).
This book, though lengthy, serves as an outstanding introduction to the concept of inerrancy, an extremely important foundational truth concerning the Bible. It is used by seminaries but is important for all who are interested in how God inspired the writing of the Bible.