New Testament Essays
Vincent Taylor. Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 1972. 146 pages.
Taylor, British minister/theologian, was one of those few who are being able to combine theology with pulpit ministry. Largely ignored in North America, Taylor and an earlier British counterpart (P. T. Forsyth) need to be heard in our time when a combination of careful scholarly endeavour and a deep reverence for the person of Jesus is required.
In this ten-article anthology, together with an absorbing biographical essay, the reader can get better acquainted both with Taylor’s careful attention to the text, and with the text of Scripture itself. The articles represent the wide scope of Taylor’s interests. Some are his endeavor at careful form and source criticism; others are theological (e.g., “Does the New Testament Call Jesus ‘God’?”). While his reliance on form and source criticism may not be a reflection of the reader’s own stance, Taylor exhibits great care and is intensely critical of those who, he says, read “in order to see what he says about the Gospels, not to understand them” (p. 82).
His wit is always in evidence, as when discussing M. Alfred Loisy, he quotes from the Book of Common Prayer and comments that Loisy’s hypothetical Lukan redactor “has left undone the things he ought to have done and there is no health in him” (p. 78).
Here is stimulating reading by a stimulating writer whose works on the atonement, on Christology and on Mark deserve our attention.