Equivocation Tree

J.I. Packer writes (not a promotion of Packer as a true Christian).


“In the first place, they accepted the viewpoint of the Romantic philosophy of religion set out by Schleiermacher — namely that the real subject-matter of theology is not divinely revealed truths, but human religious experience. On this view, the proper study of theologians, after all, is man. The Bible is a record of human action and reflection within which is embedded an experience of God, and our task is to dig that experience out. Scripture must be viewed, not as a divinely given record of a divinely given revelation, but as a by-product of the religious experience of the Hebrews; a record not so much of what God has said and done as of what some men thought He had said and done. The Bible is thus a memorial of the discovery of God by a nation with a flair for religion — that, and no more” (J.I. Packer, Fundamentalism and the Word of God; underlining mine).


In spite of Schleiermacher’s low view of Scripture and low Christology and low theology proper and low metaphysic, etc., etc., it did not restrain one insatiably inflamed theological dromedary from fornicating with him in the shade, beneath the equivocation tree:


“When in Berlin the writer often attended Schleiermacher’s church. The hymns to be sung were printed on slips of paper and distributed at the door. They were always evangelical and spiritual to an eminent degree, filled with praise and gratitude to the Redeemer. Tholuck said that Schleiermacher, when sitting in the evening with his family, would often say ‘Hush, children; let us sing a hymn of praise to Christ.’ Can we doubt that he is singing those praises now? To whomsoever Christ is God, St. John assures us, Christ is a Saviour.” (Charles Hodge, Systematic Theology, Volume 2, p. 440 footnote; underlining mine).


By “low view” of Scripture I mean that Schleiermacher received the Word of God NOT as it is in truth, but as the word of men (contra 1 Thessalonians 2:13). 


“It is a great mercy that, at least in some cases, those whose philosophy forbids their believing in the personality of God, believe in the personality of Christ, whom they regard as a man invested with all the attributes of the Godhead, and whom they love and worship accordingly” (Charles Hodge, Systematic Theology, Volume 1, p. 439).


This false mercy, false humility, and false irenicism exuding from Charles Hodge’s licentious lips is “peace, peace” when there is no peace. One Reformed author euphemized Hodge’s overt spiritual prostitution as a “rather startling catholicity” (small “c”).


Charles Hodge would solace with loves his “felicitously inconsistent” pantheist brother in Satan who loves, worships, and sings hymns of praise to an idol he blasphemously calls, “jesus” (cf. Romans 10:1-4).