Harnack’s Inconsistency

We are firmly convinced that what happens in space and time is subject to the general laws of motion, and that in the sense, as an interruption of the order of nature, there can be no such things as miracles (Adolph Harnock, Das Wesen des Christenums [Leipzig, 1933], p. 17).

But he still wanted to salvage something: “That the earth on its course stood still; that a she-ass spoke; that a storm was quieted by a word, we do not belive, and we shall never again believe; but that the lame walked, the blind saw, and the deaf heard will not be so summarily dismissed as an illusion. (Harnack, What is Christianity?)

in R. Abba, Nature and Authority of the Bible, p.153

Harnack’s inconsistency is plain to true believer and atheist alike. Why believe in Christ’s miracles and deny the Old Testament miracles? If God be God, why can he do the the former and not the latter. If God is not, then neither set of miracles are really miracles but merely await a naturalistic explanation.

Liberalism tried to cosy up to the zeitgeist of Modernism whilst trying to retain a sanctuary of belief – a miserable, compromising failure.

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