How should Christians think about the past? Of course, some historical events are unavoidably important for the Christian. Our faith is, after all, a historical faith, hinging ultimately on the life, death, resurrection and ascension of Jesus Christ—the historical figure. But what about other events in history? Is the past worth consulting for the future? Should we not think simply about progressing forward?
C.S. Lewis used to warn his readers about the vice of “chronological snobbery,” which assumes that the present is superior to the past by default. Important for cultivating vigilance against the vice of “chronological snobbery” is the habit of becoming a good historian. In this episode of the Credo Podcast, Matthew Barrett interviews historian Thomas Kidd about what makes a good historian.
Thomas S. Kidd is the Vardaman Distinguished Professor of History at Baylor University. He also serves as Distinguished Visiting Professor of Church History at Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. Dr. Kidd is the author of several books including George Whitefield: America’s Spiritual Founding Father (Yale University Press, 2014).
Matthew Barrett is Associate Professor of Christian Theology at Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, as well as the founder and executive editor of Credo Magazine. He is the author of several books, including Canon, Covenant and Christology: Rethinking Jesus and the Scriptures of Israel; None Greater: The Undomesticated Attributes of God; 40 Questions About Salvation; God’s Word Alone: The Authority of Scripture; Reformation Theology: A Systematic Summary; Salvation by Grace, and Owen on the Christian Life. He is the host of the Credo podcast where he engages top theologians on the most important theological issues today.