Specialization & D.A. Carson


I was reading a recent interview by Christianity Today with Greg Beale and Don Carson about their new "Commentary on the NT Use of the OT," and was caught by a comment by Beale on knowing Hebrew and Greek. He said, "There's such specialization in all fields today." It struck me because in seminary life I see it to be true as well. I am not sure what the solution is but I think pastors and scholars need to be well-read and well-rounded. An OT scholar ought to speak with ease about systematics and church history, and with a firm handle on the NT as well. I have not come across this too much at Southern thankfully, but it is here.


Don Carson is an exception though. He has a handle on many domains of discourse, which is why I profit from his work so much. You will read with profit from Carson on a range of topics such as prayer, evangelism, exegesis, biblical theology, pastoral ministry, worship, culture, pluralism, and much else. His faculty page at Trinity says, "Dr. Carson's areas of expertise include biblical theology, the historical Jesus, postmodernism, pluralism, Greek grammar, Johannine theology, Pauline theology, and questions of suffering and evil." Andreas Kostenberger writes, "D. A. Carson may one day be remembered as one of the last great Renaissance men in evangelical biblical scholarship. In an age of increasing specialization and fragmentation, Carson, to the admiring disbelief of many of his colleagues, persistently refuses to limit his interests. His publications cover a vast range of subjects: New Testament Greek, Bible translation, hermeneutics, contextualization, the use of the Old Testament in the New, preaching, various aspects of New Testament and biblical theology, major commentaries on Matthew and John, and even poetry."


One reason I have much respect for Carson is that he is such a churchman. He is a servant to the church, as most biblical scholarship should be. So read widely, know your subjects of interests well, and read Carson.
(Image taken from Monergism.com)