Abstract

This article examines P. T. Forsyth's theological interpretation of Scripture. Scripture for P. T. Forsyth (1848–1921) is a sacramental agent of the gospel, and the NT writings are decisively incorporated within the redemptive activity of God in Christ. Forsyth's location of authority in the gospel conveyed by Scripture allows him considerable flexibility in relation to two alternative sources of authority: biblical scholarship and biblical infallibility. An ecclesial reading of Scripture is beholden neither to the rationalism of the academy nor to mechanical theories of verbal inspiration. A church resourced by what Forsyth termed the "positive gospel" will read Scripture with decisiveness and litheness, giving space for the lively activity of the Spirit upon the Word. Moreover, the cross is the one superhistoric principle capable of interpreting all history and human action. The essay then turns to the Jesus that Forsyth encounters in his preaching of John 12 and John 16. Forsyth's powerful reading of the NT reinvigorates John's language of judgment, conviction, and sin. The holiness of the Son moving through the world and dying on the cross is the crisis of the world and accomplishes the sinful world's reconciliation with the holy Father. Forsyth's consistently theological interpretation demonstrates the potential of a theologian's immersing herself in Scripture and concentrating on the resources of the gospel.

The text of this article is only available as a PDF.
You do not currently have access to this content.