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.