Sunday, February 26, 2006

Hermann Samuel Reimarus

Far from the prying of the pious, and occasionally polite, Church in the East, and in a time still further from our own, Hermann Samuel Reimarus (1694 – 1768; Hamburg, Germany) was conjuring quite a storm in the cauldron of New Testament scholarship. He was a curious man, but one of his most curious works was only available to the wider audience a good six years after his death, perhaps an indication of his cautiousness of the vengenceful sensitivity of the 18th century Christianity. Albert Schweitzer's high regard on Reimarus can be read in the opening lines of the second chapter of Schweitzer’s The Quest of The Historical Jesus,

“Before Reimarus, no one had attempted to form a historical conception of the life of Jesus” (emphasis mine)
Click on title to read on.


The Hedonese said...

Here's a different way of looking at history and faith :)

jacksons said...

Aporia falls quotes Ludwig Wittgenstein

“Christianity is not based on a historical truth; rather, it offers us a (historical) narrative and says: now believe!”

Why does he have to be so reductionistic? Why cant it be that

“Christianity is much more than just a series of historical proofs, but, was founded on a historical truth. Even in the event of ignorance of this historical truth, one can reap the benefits of reconciliation with God that was procured by Christ, God the Son, who stepped into human history 2000 years ago.”

The application of faith and the will to submit and belief in the lordship and work of Christ does not require that we discount the historicity of the incarnation, life, death, resurrection and ascension of Christ, does it? Why should it? Because many profess a faith in the historical fact and have lives unbent and uncommitted to God, do we throw out the baby with the bath water.

If anything, the gospel and NT rationale (here is that bad word again) is that the historicity of the life and work of Christ, is the foundational factor of the validity of the rewards that it procured for us!

Ravi once made a cute statement, that when we sing the song;

“You ask me how I know He lives, He lives inside my heart” (I wonder if Wittgenstein liked this hymn)

That we had “Better be sure that He lived in history first”