On People Who Wish Not to Be Bothered with the Facts (or, Don’t Mess with Moisés Silva)

Mike Aubrey reports that, much to his horror (and mine), someone found his blog through these vile search terms:

“moises silva liberal”

I know well, my gentle snowflakes, that no words can possibly express the tremendous horror produced by such ghastly (and indeed, hellish) lucubrations, produced as they are by sick and perverted minds. It is to Mr Aubrey’s credit, then, that he made some excellent (if brief) remarks concerning the wholly reprehensible practice of labeling scholars as “liberal” as a way to conveniently dismiss their work. To them I should only like to add a quote from the infallible Moisés Silva himself (depicted to the right in an artist’s rendering), taken from his Interpreting Galatians: Explorations in Exegetical Method, 2nd. ed. (Grand Rapids: Baker, 2001):

“Nothing could be more wrong-headed than letting our conceptual framework blind us to the evidence or to new ways of looking at the evidence. It is all too easy for us to prejudge specific interpretations simply because they have been advanced by unbelieving scholars or simply because they appear, at first blush, to conflict with our prior commitments. But the Christian faith does not ask us to ignore or reject the facts. Quite the contrary, it provides the only means of properly evaluating themall of them” (page 151).

(This chapter of Interpreting Galatians appeared originally as “Systematic Theology and the Apostle to the Gentiles” in Trinity Journal 15:1 [Spring 1994]: 3-26. A link to the full text of this article, and to that of several other articles by Our Infallible Hero, may be found at the end of what is perhaps the most important post I have written on this blog.)

10 responses to “On People Who Wish Not to Be Bothered with the Facts (or, Don’t Mess with Moisés Silva)

  1. The other post you linked to was really interesting. I’ve wondered why you were such a Moises Silva fan. I like him just because his last name sounds Hispanic (like Larry Hurtado’s)
    : )
    Shallow I know.

    I did listen to his lectures on John from WTS a few years ago. That’s really been my only interaction with him.

    I’ve been meaning to get his book Biblical Words and Their Meanings. I guess I’ll have to add that to my wish list now.



  2. It’s funny, because the other day I told my friend, who recently started pastoring a church about this book I got from Kregel called 40 Questions About Elders and Deacons and he said he wanted to read it. So then I told him that the author said that there were no more apostles and prophets, and he said, forget it, that guy’s an idiot and doesn’t know what he’s talking about, I don’t want to read it now. My response was very similar to Silva’s statement above. I must be infallible as well! ;-)


  3. Biblical Words and Their Meaning is a challenging read, but worth the effort. Its the kind of book you need to read at least twice. Once to get a feel for it and a second time to soak it all in.


  4. Bryan> Hi, and thanks for stopping by! :-)

    Not only does Silva’s name sound Hispanic, but it is Hispanic: he was born in Havana, Cuba, in 1945, and came to the US in 1960.

    You should most definitely read Biblical Words and Their Meaning! I quite agree with Mike: this a book to which you’ll want to return more than once. I know I still go over it often 11 years after reading for the first time!

    And I’m glad that my earlier post helped you figure out what lies behind some of my quirks. ;-)

    Nick> I’m sorry to tell you that you’re not infallible yourself only because you happened to have an opinion that coincides with Silva’s. He’s infallible, and you’re just lucky not to be wrong about that issue. ;-)


  5. I was reading God, Language and Scripture by Silva today in the doctor’s office. It is a light read actually and even fits nicely in my purse.

    The last book I took to the doctor’s office got left behind – it didn’t fit in my purse. I realize this is a very shallow reason for picking up Silva on the way out the door but there it is. I enjoyed it.


  6. Suzanne> I too choose books to bring along based on size and how easy it is to carry them around without forgetting them, so I don’t thin it’s all that shallow! ;-) My own regret is that I have that “Foundations of Contemporary interpretation” series in a single volume rather than as six individual ones, so it’s never the one I choose to carry. Biblical Words and Their Meaning is just the right size, though!

    Iyov> Oh! What happened! Did someone perversely hack into my blog, changing the header back to the original one and messing up the color scheme?! ;-)


  7. Wasn’t it tan just the other day? I wish I could change mine from greenish to tan but there are no good alternatives sadly (and I’m too cheap to pay for an upgrade). I much prefer almost any color to black though.


  8. Nathan> No, it was black until Tuesday, when I changed templates. I got sick of the black background (much to Nick Norelli’s rejoicing, I’m sure), and especially of the color scheme for links, header, and such. I think this one works much better!

    And you see, if you were on Blogger, not only could you choose any of their styles and modify it to your heart’s content, but you could even import a template made by someone else from many of the “blogger template” sites out there, and all of this for free. But of course, you had to go and join Nick Norelli’s WordPress Cult, didn’t you? No worries, though: I still like you. ;-)


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