“The Protestant scholastic use of reason derives not from a desire to create a synthesis of theology and philosophy but rather from a clearly percieved and enunciated need to use the tools of reason in the construction of theological system – indeed, to distinguish between Christian and non-Christian philosophy just as it had distinguished between regenerate and non-regenerate natural theology. Not only is rational arguement necessary to the elaboration of theological arguement, it is also the tool by which conclusions can be drawn in the movement from the text of Scripture to theological formulation.” (Richard Muller, Post Reformation Reformed Dogmatics, V.I.pg.404) 

For many today the idea of reason having a natural and authentic role in theological contruction is difficult to swallow. Particularly because once one agrees with Muller’s point here, that reason played a positive role in the construction of theology and in its conclusions, the fear that many have is that its reason and not revelation that is determining what can be valid doctrines and what invalidates doctrine, namely the current constructions of reason.

Muller makes an invaluable distinction toward the end of his first volume by discussing the principal/foundational role that Scripture and God play in our theological constructions, God as that which is the ground for all being, and Scripture as that which is the ground for all knowledge. Reason follows these and does not funtion in a principal/foundational manner like God or Scripture, it finds itself rather in service to them.

I have simplified Muller’s conclusions here greatly, nevertheless does setting reason in this relation to God and Scripture help you better understand its role in theological constructions and conclusions?