I'm not sure how others take this, but I think its awesome, and therefore true. What is interesting is when he applies this to biblical interpretation. I mentioned this briefly in point 4 of the Divine Meaning pt. 1 post, but I wanted to return to it and see what anyone else thinks about it. To allow Torrance to speak for himself,, "The Word of God comes to us in the Bible and can be heard as such only within our experience of God's saving activity in the Lord Jesus Christ" (p. 9). This implies, and Torrance makes this explicit in regards to theology in general in The Mediation of Christ, that a wicked, unrepentant person will be unable to mentally understand the gospel, let alone live according to it, no matter how much training they have had in biblical interpretation.
Any thoughts on this? It seems both healthy and dangerous to me. Healthy in that it locates the revealing power of God in the Word that became flesh and is living and active, rather than in the Word that became text and can parsed and argued until kingdom come with no increase in understanding. It seems dangerous on the other hand in that it may allow for spiritualized, subjective interpretations under the supposed authority of some direct personal revelation anyone might claim to have. Torrance is keenly aware of this danger and guards against it by marrying this need for "our experience of God's saving activity" with the need for an objective "scientific hermeneutic" that gives our understanding of the gospel some objectivity. I guess I just always saw the Bible and even our ability to understand it rightly as a universally objective given that enabled the possibility of subjectively experiencing God's saving activity. Thinking about it, though, Torrance really isn't introducing a subjectivity into biblical interpretation, but saying both that the objectively human word of scripture must be approached by a scientific hermeneutic and the objectively divine Word speaking through the Bible must be approached by what Torrance elsewhere calls the inner objectivity of the Spirit enabling faithful hearing, for the Bible as a unity of human word and divine Word to be rightly understood.