Wesley Bros: The Fantastic Quadrilateral Pt. 1



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The infamous Wesleyan Quadrilateral, devised in the 60’s and 70’s by Methodist scholar Albert Outler, it has now became so important to Methodists everywhere that it’s one of the make-it or break-it questions in the ordination process. It has been abused because of the dorky name, and the predisposition to think that Scripture becomes an equal authority with Tradition, Reason, and/or Experience.

Here’s the secret. Scripture is the primary authority. EVERYONE INTERPRETS SCRIPTURE (certainly not just Wesleyans), and Tradition, Reason, and Experience are the only ways anyone interprets it.

The Fantastic Four was literally the perfect way for me to teach and make fun of the Quadrilateral. Hopefully I don’t get sued. Anyway, stay tuned the next few weeks to see how our new team solves important decisions in the history of the church!

Charlie Baber

Rev. Charlie Baber is author and illustrator of the weekly web comic: Wesley Bros. When he isn’t finding new ways to mash-up church history with modern culture, he has actual responsibilities as a Deacon serving at Highland UMC in Raleigh, NC. Check out Charlie’s site at www.wesleybros.com.

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Paul W.

Awesome comic! I too am not a fan of the (non-Wesley) Quadrilateral. I groan whenever someone brings it up during discussions of doctrine or the meaning of a passage — it seems to be invoked only when attempting to justify why Reason and Experience necessitates invalidating (or, ahem, “re-interpreting”) some part of Scripture.

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