Since Barth's attack on ‘religion’ and religious ‘experience’ as the point of focus for Christian theology, it has just not been the thing to do to turn to it as such for theological direction. In a similar vein, Dietrich Bonhoeffer has reminded us that to be a Christian is not to be ‘religious’ but to be only a man. Barth objected to an experiential focus for fear that the sovereignty of God would be compromised by confusing his word and works with their manifestations in experience. Bonhoeffer and, following him, modern secular, radical theology objects to this religious focus because it compromises the integrity of the secular self-understanding of the modern mündig man. Nevertheless, Barth recognised that theology has no beginning point other than the communal experience of faith—hence, ‘church’ dogmatics. The contention of this paper is that Michael Polanyi's analysis of scientific knowledge offers a model for understanding the experience and knowledge of faith that is faithful both to the experience of faith and to the modern secular, scientific experience.1 Therefore, following an exposition of Polanyi's epistemology, I will seek to demonstrate that it is a most helpful hermeneutic for the understanding of Christian experience as described by Paul, especially in the early chapters of 1 Corinthians.