“Must Biblical and Systematic Theology Remain Apart? Reflection on Paul van Imschoot” by SCOTT N. CALLAHAM
Biblical and systematic theology stand in tension as fields of study that are constructively related in theory but strictly segregated in practice. In the first place, the nature of biblical theology seems to mandate that the concerns of systematic theology exert no conscious influence upon the work of biblical theologians. Furthermore, as a rule, biblical theologies—especially those firmly grounded in the OT— only tangentially influence the work of systematicians. Thus endures a stubborn, seemingly intractable impasse in academic theology. Those who nonetheless seek a voice for biblical theology in the broader world of Christian theological reflection have an unlikely ally in Paul van Imschoot, a nearly forgotten pre-Vatican II Catholic biblical theologian. Van Imschoot’s productive labors transgress received assumptions on the relationship between biblical and systematic theology and beckon present theologians to return to the grounding of Scripture for the formation of doctrine.
KEYWORDS: biblical theology, systematic theology, OT theology, pneumatology, Paul van Imschoot