Today we speak with Austin Reed about Karl Barth’s theology of election. Austin is a student at Greenville Presbyterian Theological Seminary and walks us through a critical review of Karl Barth’s Infralapsarian Theology: Origins and Development, 1920–1953 by Shao Kai Tseng. Tseng challenges the scholarly status quo, arguing that despite Barth’s stated favor of supralapsarianism, his mature lapsarian theology is complex and dialectical. It demonstrates elements of both supra- and infralapsarianism, though it favors the latter. In Tseng’s assessment, Barth’s theology is basically infralapsarian because he sees the object of election as fallen humankind and understands the incarnation as God’s act of taking on human nature in its condition of fallenness.

Be sure to read Austin Reed’s review of Reading Barth with Charity: A Hermeneutic Proposal by George Hunsinger.

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Christ the Center focuses on Reformed Christian theology. In each episode a group of informed panelists discusses important issues in order to encourage critical thinking and a better understanding of Reformed doctrine with a view toward godly living. Browse more episodes from this program and learn how to subscribe.