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Holy Scripture: Revelation, Inspiration & Interpretation (Christian Foundations)

, 1994
ISBN: 9780830863754
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In Holy Scripture, Donald G. Bloesch sets out the pivotal evangelical doctrines of the Bible's revelation, inspiration and interpretation.

Wishing to "defend the orthodox evangelical faith from its friends as well as its enemies," Bloesch provocatively argues against both evangelical rationalism and liberal experientialism. And he proposes the alternative of biblical evangelicalism--which sees Scripture as the written Word of God but stresses that it becomes the living Word of God only through the illumination of the Holy Spirit.

In dialogue with Martin Luther, John Calvin, P. T. Forsyth, Karl Barth and Emil Brunner, Bloesch’s Holy Scripture examines the implications of biblical authority for the twenty-first century. It surveys the role of the Bible as seen within the Bible itself and as that role has unfolded through centuries of Christian tradition. It also explains and critiques many highly contested issues, such as the value of biblical criticism, the meaning of myth, the plethora of hermeneutical options and the nature of truth.

Holy Scripture: Revelation, Inspiration & Interpretation was a 1995 Christianity Today Book Award Winner.

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Key Features

  • Provides thoughtful explanation and criticism concerning hot biblical issues
  • Brings new light to arguments debated by prominent theologians, such as John Calvin and Martin Luther, throughout the ages
  • All Scripture references appear on mouse-over

Top Highlights

“The sacramental model sees the Bible as a divinely appointed medium or channel of revelation.” (Page 41)

“By the scholastic I mean that kind of theology that emphasizes the accessibility of the infinite to the finite and the possibility and indeed the desirability of systematizing the body of revealed knowledge given in Scripture.” (Page 40)

“Today theology needs to recover the paradoxical unity of Word and Spirit, for only on the basis of this unity can Scripture be made to come alive and be a transforming leaven in the life of the church. Scripture in itself is the written Word of God, comprising by virtue of its divine inspiration a reliable witness to the truth revealed by God in Jesus Christ. But it becomes the living Word when it actually communicates to us the truth and power of the cross of Christ through the illumination of the Spirit.” (Pages 25–26)

“The scholastic model holds the Bible to be the written revelation of God, a revelation ascertainable by human reason, though efficacious only for faith.” (Page 42)

“The true humanity of Scripture involves a vulnerability to error and a limited cultural horizon because the writers lived in a particular time and place in history. Yet though the writers and the text bear the limitations imposed by cultural and historical contingency, the text by virtue of its inspiration and present illumination by the Holy Spirit opens to us a culturally transcendent horizon when seen in its relationship to Jesus Christ. This relationship constitutes the fullness of its meaning, its sensus plenior.” (Page 39)

Praise for the Print Edition

Holy Scripture could well represent the high point of evangelicalism's dialogue with modern skepticism.

The Covenant Quarterly

Bloesch has given us… much that is profitable, the heart of many years of effective theological reflection.

Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society

Product Details

  • Title: Holy Scripture: Revelation, Inspiration & Interpretation
  • Author: Donald G. Bloesch
  • Series: Christian Foundations
  • Publisher: InterVarsity Press
  • Publication Date: 1994
  • Pages: 381

Donald G. Bloesch (1928-2010) earned his Ph.D. from the University of Chicago and was professor of theology emeritus at Dubuque Theological Seminary in Dubuque, Iowa. He did postdoctoral work at the universities of Oxford, Tübingen and Basel. He wrote numerous books, including Faith and Its Counterfeits, Evangelical Theology in Transition, Theological Notebook: Volume 3, Essentials of Evangelical Theology, The Future of Evangelical Christianity, The Struggle of Prayer, Spirituality Old New, Freedom for Obedience and the seven-volume Christian Foundations series. He also served for a time as president of the Midwest Division of the American Theological Society.

Sample Pages from the Print Edition


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  1. Glenn Crouch

    Glenn Crouch


    I am enjoying re-reading these volumes almost 20 years later (not so long for some of the later volumes of course). I do enjoy the way Bloesch writes and he gives me much to think about. Even when I disagree with him (or at least don't fully agree), I can still appreciate his argument. This is an excellent volume that I would recommend to any Christian who is serious about Hermeneutics. It is also quite accessible for those who may be concerned with what people say about the Bible, about Inerrancy, about Inspiration. Too often we seem to be presented with an extreme Fundamental / Everything Literal approach or an extreme Liberal / Everything Made Up approach, if we reject the former then we are accused of not being Christian, if we reject the latter then we are unthinking zealots. Bloesch's approach is far more reasonable and I would argue still quite evangelical. Well worth the time to read - now on to the next volume :)


Print list price: $32.00
Save $9.01 (28%)