Welcome to Brazen Church’s Q&A forum. This is a place for everyone in our community to ask and answer questions. We are just getting started, so don’t hesitate to speak up and ask a question that’s been on your mind!
By “phenomenological”, I mean rooted in patterns of thinking that are based on simple observation of the world – not based on abstract philosophy or metaphysics.
A quick example of the difference between phenomenological vs metaphysical thinking: When does tomorrow start? The modern world says midnight, but midnight is treated as one of 24 abstract, ad-hoc parts of a day. In the ancient near east on the other hand, tomorrow starts at sundown – sundown is a phenomenological event, something I can observe with my own eyes. I don’t have to abstractly divide the day and count, I can just wait to observe the next sunset.
In that same simple sense, it appears the bible is phenomenological when it comes to other “big picture” issues that we love to debate about: creation, free will, God’s relationship to time, etc… I’ve read similar thought from people such as John Walton, Michael Heiser, Craig Keener, etc… and am wondering if anyone else has thought about this specific issue.
If the bible is indeed rooted in phenomenological thinking, it would help explain the disconnects and unending debates we often see in western theology, that is really into asking metaphysical questions – see, Augustine, Aquinas, Calvin, Arminius, Edwards, etc…