In conjunction with reading Herman Bavinck’s Reformed Dogmatics, I am reading Ron Gleason’s biography of Bavinck: Herman Bavinck: Pastor, Churchman, Statesman, and Theologian. I think it has been helpful so far and will continue to be so. During my last reading of Gleason, however, I was surprised at the content of footnote 15 on pgs. 230-231.
In the footnote, Gleason alludes to differences between Bavinck and Abraham Kuyper. He cites Richard Gaffin to mention Abraham Kuyper’s rejection of biblical theology in name and concept. Gleason then writes, “Bavinck, on the other hand not only rejected Kuyper’s Neo-Kantian tendencies but Kuyper’s disdain for biblical theology.” Such a statement is surprising to me because in volume one of RD Bavink writes,
But such a conception of “biblical theology,” besides being practically impossible, is also theoretically incorrect. Scripture is not a legal document, the articles of which only need to be looked up for a person to find out what is in view in a given case. It is composed of many books written by various authors, dating back to different times and divergent in content. It is a living whole, not abstract but organic. It nowhere contains a sketch of the doctrine of faith; this is something that has to be drawn from the entire organism of Scripture.
Now I have no reason to believe that Ron Gleason, Richard Gaffin, or any Bavinck scholar frequents my blog. But if someone with greater knowledge on this matter than I posses stumbles across this post, I would be interested in hearing more. It seems to me that Bavinck shares Kuyper’s disdain for biblical theology. Am I missing something in RD? Or did Bavinck write something to the contrary somewhere else?