Recently I watched a highlight of Dr. White dealing with the concept of Ontological Canon vs. Epistemological Canon. I am familiar with ontological, epistemological, and canon but the comparison/contrast infers two kinds of canons the Canon that is [Ontological], and the Canon we understand as Canon [Epistemological]. White dealt with this comparison in the context of dealing with Roman Catholic dogma regarding who has the authority to determine what is or is not Canon.
In the end, I did not find the distinction to be helpful because most theological systems instantly receive another category which could be easily summarized. Consider the following:
1.) We have the Ontological Trinity, the Economic Trinity, and now the Epistemological Trinity or the Trinity we understand as Trinity.
2.) There is Ontological Justification or Justification that is as God has ordained it. Then there is Epistemological Justification or the Justification we understand as Justification
3.) There is Ontological Prayer or Prayer that is as God ordained it. Then there is Epistemological Prayer or our understanding of Prayer as Prayer.
4.) There is Ontological Math or Math that is as God ordained it. Then there is Epistemological Math or our understanding of Math.
In each of these cases, depending on one’s sanctification in the Holy Spirit through the word, the Ontological element is unchanged but the epistemological element could be different and by differing degrees.
It seems easier and more parsimonious to simply state, “Ontology precedes epistemology” and “While human knowledge is not exhaustive knowledge it can nevertheless be true knowledge.”
Otherwise we end up, if applied to the whole of theology, Ontological Animals and Epistemological Animals, Ontological Sacrifices and Epistemological Sacrifices, Ontological Angels and Epistemological Angels, Ontological Patriarchs and Epistemological Patriarchs, Ontological Redemptive History and Epistemological Redemptive History and on and on.
In this sense, I’m just not sure the distinction [Ontological vs. Epistemological Canon] is helpful or even necessary.