Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Blurbs for Wright's New Book

Denny Burk points out that the blurbs for Wright's response to his critics on justification are now online at the IVP (US) site.

The most interesting blurb is from Scot McKnight:
Tom Wright has out-Reformed America's newest religious zealots--the neo-Reformed--by taking them back to Scripture and to its meaning in its historical context. Wright reveals that the neo-Reformed are more committed to tradition than to the sacred text. This irony is palpable on every page of this judicious, hard-hitting, respectful study.
So D. A. Carson, Mark Seifrid, John Piper and others are "religious zealots" "more committed to tradition than to the sacred text"? Even if one grants that Carson, Seifrid, Piper, et al are exegetically wrong, I have a hard time seeing how this name-calling and accusation is fair, charitable, or appropriate. The other blurbs, fortunately, are more irenic.


A few more thoughts:

(1) I like Scot too, and appreciate a lot of what he does and is trying to do.

(2) He gets rightly frustrating at lumping diverse folks into one camp and label, especially when that label is "Emergent."

(3) He makes no distinctions whatsoever in this blurb--it's just one group, the "neo-Reformed."

(4) He is right that such a group exists--folks who tend to return to tradition more than Scripture and functionally elevate the former above the latter.

(5) If he is thinking of certain bloggers rather than people like Carson, Piper, Seifrid, then the blurb doesn't do a good job of conveying his intentions. Wright's book is a response (I presume) to written arguments by specific individuals (the aforementioned). To blurb it by saying that Wright's response reveals something about the "neo-Reformed," the standard rules of discerning authorial intent would suggest he is including said scholars in that category.