Jump directly to the Content
Theology

Luke Timothy Johnson and The Spirit of Imagination

Religious experience serves and shapes theological discernment, but Scripture determines.
Luke Timothy Johnson and The Spirit of Imagination

Luke Timothy Johnson, Robert W. Woodruff Professor Emeritus of New Testament and Christian Origins at Candler School of Theology, has spent a lifetime writing on the New Testament. If you want to know more about his latest book,Constructing Paul, consider Nijay Gupta’s interview or Scot McKnight’s book review.

Here, I wish to connect Johnson’s vision of Scripture to the life of the church. Under his supervision as a doctoral student, he taught me how to read Scripture both closely and imaginatively, as an artful skill and spiritual discipline. A significant refrain in Johnson’s work is the centrality of religious experience for the interpretation of Scripture. At times, for Johnson, the cumulative weight of human experience contradicts scriptural commands; while for evangelicals Scripture holds the central place of authority over other common sources of theological reflection (experience, tradition, and reason). Yet Johnson has a lot to teach on reading and experiencing ...

Subscriber access only You have reached the end of this Article Preview

To continue reading, subscribe to Christianity Today magazine. Subscribers have full digital access to CT Pastors articles.

May/June
Support Our Work

Subscribe to CT for less than $4.25/month

Homepage Subscription Panel

Read These Next

Related
Pastoring Up: Investing in Those Over You
Pastoring Up: Investing in Those Over You
From the Magazine
Our Pulpits Are Full of Empty Preachers
Our Pulpits Are Full of Empty Preachers
Tens of thousands of pastors want to quit but haven’t. What has that done to them?
Editor's Pick
How the Early Church Dealt with Racial and Cultural Division
How the Early Church Dealt with Racial and Cultural Division
They saw that their ability to truly be the church was at stake.
close