Dale Tuggy

Dale Tuggy is Professor of Philosophy at the State University of New York at Fredonia, where he teaches courses in analytic theology, philosophy of religion, religious studies, and the history of philosophy.


  1. Eerdmans All Over: October 21, 2016 – EerdWord
    October 21, 2016 @ 1:36 pm

    […] Kirk was interviewed about A Man Attested by God on the Trinities podcast. Take a […]

  2. Paul Peterson
    October 18, 2016 @ 11:29 pm

    Another excellent interview, Dale! You’re putting some serious pressure on my book-buying budget. 🙂

  3. OddintheTruth
    October 18, 2016 @ 7:35 pm

    Challenging show…as usual when dealing with Christology.

    Couple of thoughts about the Gospel of Mark. You played a snippet from Licona and then provided Kirk’s alternative interpretation. The problem is that Licona’s words are the over-simplified apologetic take (as I’m sure he would concede) on Mark.

    Daniel Johannson’s thesis (under Larry Hurtado) dives tediously deep into the Christology of Mark and would be a better foil for the views Kirk holds. Likewise, Matthew Bates prosopological handling of Matthew/Mark/Luke/early Church/Jesus’s use of the OT provides even more relevant scholarship about early high Christology. It too would serve as a better foil. I am reading it now.

    • Dale Tuggy
      October 18, 2016 @ 9:21 pm

      Hi – thanks for the comment. Sure, Dr. Licona was summarizing; I picked that quote because he eloquently summarizes what is becoming received wisdom lately in some evangelical circles. I’d never heard it put so well. And I left out a part I agree with – where he says just after that surely we should want to read the first three gospels as essentially agreeing with the fourth. Of course, I want to argue how we should read the fourth. http://trinities.org/blog/podcast-70-the-one-god-and-his-son-according-to-john/

      But having read Dr. Kirk’s book, as far as I can tell, the points he’s making do undermine the case of the others. The main evidence is in his biblical and non-biblical examples of human being said to do things which, allegedly, only God can do.

      The “early high” genre is exploding, and is hard for any non-specialist to keep up with. But it seems to me that in general a lot of it is citing Bauckham and making similar moves. In other cases, the claims are so abstract, that it’s hard to see any real theological payoff…

      Can’t say I understand what the “prosopological” suggestion amounts to. Care to summarize?

      • OddintheTruth
        October 19, 2016 @ 8:33 pm

        For a summary, here is a quote from Justin Martyr cited by Bates that defines what he calls the prosopological approach to reading certain passages of the OT.

        Justin Martyr:
        “But whenever you hear the sayings of the prophets spoken as from a person [h?s apo pros?pou], you must not suppose the sayings to be spoken from the inspired persons themselves, but from the divine Logos [theiou Logou] who moves them. For sometimes he speaks as one announcing in advance things which are about to happen; sometimes he speaks as from the person of God, the Master and Father of all; sometimes as from the person of Christ; sometimes as from the person of the people giving answer to the Lord and his Father— such as is seen in your own writers, when one person is the writer of the whole, but many people are put forward as participating in dialogue [pros?pa de ta dialegomena plei? parapheronta]. (36. 1– 2)”

        Bates, using this and other citations, goes on to show how not only the early Church fathers, but Jesus and the NT writers themselves used this approach when citing the OT – it was a common approach throughout the Hellenized world.

        He then deals with specific OT passages that these guys and the NT writers interpreted with this approach. He shows that a belief in a pre-existent Son, for example, is established quite convincingly (among other things).

        Bates also argues that the prosopological approach gives rise to a high Christology that can work along side that of Wright, Bauckham and Hurtado, but does not need them.

        In Bates own words:
        “In summary, although there are three other ways in which the emergence of the doctrine of the Trinity has been traced by scholarship, a fourth way, the approach via continuity in prosopological exegesis of the Old Testament, has been widely neglected for the earliest strata by scholars of the New Testament and early Christianity. Nonetheless, it has a clear ancient prominence and pedigree that suggests it is a central strand in need of recovery— indeed, as the remaining chapters seek to demonstrate, it is not too large a thing to say that theodramatic interpretation within a messianic movement in late Second Temple Judaism was foundational to the birth of the Trinity.”