Wednesday, September 04, 2013

New Word Magazine (9.3.13): Review: Dan Wallace on Preservation

I recorded a new Word Magazine yesterday.  This episode begins a review of Dan Wallace's 1992 article (published on in 2004) Inspiration, Preservation, and New Testament Textual Criticism.  You can also listen to or download an audio reading of the article here.
In the episode I noted that Wallace approaches the study of the text of the NT as a broad evangelical and not from a Reformed confessional perspective.  Along those lines, I offered this quote from Wallace's contribution to Perspectives on the Ending of Mark, Ed. David Alan Black (B & H Academic, 2008) [see my longer review of this work in the January 2012 ATI (pp. 133-138) here]:
"If, however, the doctrine of preservation is not part of your credo, you would be more open to all the textual options.  I, for one, do not think that the real ending to Mark was lost, but I have no theological agenda in this matter I don't hold to the doctrine of preservation.  That doctrine, first formulated in the Westminster Confession (1646), has a poor Biblical basis.  I do not think that the doctrine is defensible--either exegetically or empirically [in a footnote here he cites the 1992 article under discussion].  As Bruce Metzger was fond of saying, it's neither wise nor safe to hold to doctrines that are not taught in Scripture.  I may be wrong in my view of preservation, but this presupposition at least keeps an open door for me for all the options in Mark 16" (p. 7). 


Phil Brown said...

Thank you for this. This is a good defense of the doctrine of preservation. I have been hit many times with the "ad hominem" accusation when I make the point this is a Theological issue. Do you have any thoughts on that?

Jeffrey T. Riddle said...

I just think every time we hear the response that "problems with text do not affect any core doctrines" that we offer a direct challenge: But does it not affect the doctrines of inspiration, preservation, and canon?