Saturday, February 20, 2010


I need to get some of Mahen's books ... I find it interesting that liberalism is almost as unchanging as God. :)

“The really important thing about this elaborate reconstruction of the history of the church is not the historical improbability of it in detail, but the presupposition upon which it is based. We do not indeed demand that a historian should be without presuppositions. But the important question is whether the presuppositions are true or false. And in the case of Dr. McGiffert, we think that they are false. The entire book is really based upon the pragmatist assumption that religion can be separated from theology and that a man can obtain the values of the religious life apart from the particular intellectual conception which he forms of his God. This assumption leads in the first place to an artificial treatment of history, which altogether fails to do justice to the real complexity of human life; and it leads, in the second place, and in particular, to the reconstruction, contrary to all evidence, of a primitive Gentile Christianity which shall exhibit just the type of nontheological religion which the modern pragmatist desires.”

J.Gresham Machen, “Review of Arthur Cushman McGiffert’s The God of the Early Chrisitans” (1924) in Selected Shorter Writings, edited by D.G. Hart, 499-50.


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