Document: Ronald L. Roper, Naive Experience, Narrative Scripture, Religious Ground Motives & Scientific Historiography concerned with the Ancient Past (Netherlands: Association for Calvinistic Philosophy, 1994).
Excerpt: Anyone familiar with Herman Dooyeweerd’s philosophy has encountered his refreshing treatment of what he termed “naive experience.” His restoration of ordinary experience to its rightful status alongside “theoretical thought,” in philosophical reflection, is regarded as one of his most noteworthy achievements. This paper will explore some pressing issues surrounding the status and authority of the Bible as a book whose intentional level of address is our concrete experience. It will maintain that philosophy of religion and the doctrine of Scripture, including elenctics/apologetics, urgently need the reforming touch of Dooyeweerd’s reformationally motivated distinction. The special focus will be perennial questions about the historicity of Biblical narratives–which I allege to be naive, pretheoretical, true records–entailing their consequent persuasive influence over the human heart and their evidential use in the science of historiography.