Friday, 24 February 2012

Evangelical use of Speech-Act theory

Recently, Evangelical theologians have been applying Speech-Act theory to various elements of theology. They include:
Anyone know any other significant ones that I've missed...?

Here's my summary of the theological use of speech-act theory:
  1. The Bible, as God's word, is not "dead" - it's not passive, just sitting there waiting for us to breathe life into it through our hermeneutical manoeuvres;
  2. On the contrary, it is "alive", because it is God's active speech to us.
  3. In the Bible, God proposes the means of relating to him - viz, Christ, the Gospel. The Bible is God's word and Jesus is God's word. The Bible is living and active because the risen Jesus is living and active as the divine communication of the living, active God.
  4. That divine proposal, by it's very nature as God's word to his people, achieves its desired result of causing those people - "the elect" - to take hold of those proposed means of relating to God.
  5. Putting it Trinitarianly: the Father speaks - the Son is the content of that speech - the Spirit applies the Word to our "souls" - our hearts & minds, the internal aspect of human being - such that we willingly & wholeheartedly turn to God in Christ in repentance and faith.
My questions to you are:
  1. Have I got it right? Is this a good summary of the Evangelical use of Speech-Act theory?
  2. Have they got it right? Does this faithfully represent God, and his means of relating to the world and the church?
Thoughts, please.

4 comments:

Nathan said...

Gordon Wenham, "Singing the Ethos of God" or something like that... suggests Speech Act theory has significance with the ethical application of the Psalms.

Nathan said...

It's an article in response to a book.

Vaughan Smith said...

Lane Tipton has recently criticised Horton's use of SAT in "Covenant and Salvation". A good interaction between the two can be found <a href='http://reformedforum.org/ctc213/>here</a>.

Vaughan Smith said...

That is, Horton's use of SAT that causes him to posit a (sort of) justification prior to regeneration in the ordo.