Master of Theology (ThM)
CSBI, Inerrancy, Open Theism, Scripture, Theology, Traditional Theism
Biblical Studies | Religious Thought, Theology and Philosophy of Religion
Mattfield, Stuart Mark, "The Incompatibility of Open Theism with the Doctrine of Inerrancy" (2015). Masters Theses. 361.
The primary purpose of this thesis is to show that the doctrine of open theism denies the doctrine of inerrancy. Specifically open theism falsely interprets Scriptural references to God's Divine omniscience and sovereignty, and conversely ignores the weighty Scriptural references to those two attributes which attribute perfection and completeness in a manner which open theism explicitly denies. While the doctrine of inerrancy has been hotly debated since the Enlightenment, and mostly so through the modern and postmodern eras, it may be argued that there has been a traditional understanding of the Bible's inerrancy that is drawn from Scripture, and has been held since the early church fathers up to today's conservative theologians. This view was codified in October, 1978 in the form of the Chicago Statement of Biblical Inerrancy. These three sources provide more than ample understanding of Biblical inerrancy by which to measure the views of open theism. Open theism criticizes a traditional view of God's attributes, not the least of which are God's omniscience and sovereignty. The underlying agenda for their efforts is to retain a high view of man's free will. The end result of their efforts is an explicit denial of the full and complete Divine omniscience and sovereignty of God as presented in the Scripture, which in turn commits a violation of the doctrine of inerrancy. The implications of such denial are significant to the doctrine of God and a high view of Scripture.