Warfield vs The Critics

Now, it may well be asked, is that true criticism which starts with the presupposition that the supernatural is impossible, proceeds by a sustained effort to do violence to the facts, and ends by erecting a gigantic historical chimera—overturning all established history—on the appropriate basis of airy nothing? And, is not this a fair picture of the negative criticism of the day? Look at its history,—see its series of wild dreams,—note how each new school has to begin by executing justice on its predecessor. So Paulus goes down before Strauss, Strauss falls before Baur, and Baur before the resistless logic of his own negative successors. Take the grandest of them all,—the acutest critic that ever turned his learning against the Christian Scriptures, and it will require but little searching to discover that Baur has ruthlessly violated every canon of genuine criticism. And if this is true of him, what is to be said of the school of Kuenen which now seems to be in the ascendant? We cannot now follow theories like this into details. But on a basis of a study of those details we can remark without fear of successful contradiction that the history of modern negative, criticism is blotted all over and every page stained black with the proofs of work undertaken with its conclusion already foregone and prosecuted in a spirit that was blind to all adverse evidence. Who does not know, for example, of the sustained attempts made to pack the witness box against the Christian Scriptures?—the wild denials of evidence the most undeniable,—the wilder dragging into court of evidence the most palpably manufactured? Read More»

B. B. Warfield | “Inspiration and Criticism” | (HT: Kim Riddlebarger)



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