12 May 2010

Enough to Get a Feel

by Frank Turk

There's an interesting post about a "long slog through the fifty chapters of Genesis," and it was about what I'd expect from the writer of that blog.

Coupla-three notes on that blog post for you to masticate on today:
  • It's ironic that the writer finds Genesis 22 "rich and controversial" and then finds Genesis 45 "one of the most mundane". You would think that the controversy in Gen 22 would spill over a little so that the deliverance there can be seen again in the deliverance evident in Gen 45.
  • Why does the writer of Genesis switch between "Jacob" to "Israel" in Gen 45 & 46? Is it really "random" and the linked blogger suggests?
  • What convinced Israel that his beloved son Joseph was alive after all the years of mourning, do you think? Does gen 45 tell us at all?
I'm pinched today for time, but I'll be back later to see what you-all think of this stuff.

It will be an interesting community-wide discussion, I am sure. Perhaps we can all get a feel for the meaning of Genesis by the time we're done.







63 comments:

Sir Aaron said...

I don't know about others, but that linked webpage crashes IE everytime. I couldn't read more than a few paragraphs because I only had a couple seconds.

But, my initial comment is that I'm a bit put off by the way he decribes the journey through Genesis as a "long slog." My Pastor went through Genesis (which must have taken a couple years) and it is a marvelous journey.
I didn't think the binding of Isaac to be terribly controversial. The reunion with Joseph got the space it deserved considering the amount of time that Genesis covers.

John said...

Stop demanding that we think critically, Frank. I'd rather just be critical.

Kaffinator said...

Frank: You would think that the controversy in Gen 22 would spill over a little so that the deliverance there can be seen again in the deliverance evident in Gen 45.

Come now, Frank, why would we even *think* to look for that kind of sophisticated literary intent in the writings of primitive shepherds? They should consider themselves blessed that we still manage to slog through their randomness.

mikeb said...

This writer and his church overall sound a bit Brian McLarenish.

And who preaches on anything from the Bible, then calls it "mundane"?

Chuck said...

Just think about the narrative as a whole. Abraham is promised that great nation will come from his son Isaac, and we are tracing the unfolding fulfillment of that promise.

Jacob, after struggling with the angel of the Lord, is given the name Israel. Several chapters later, the name change is reiterated in the context of the promise of Abraham being repeated and specifically applied to Jacob/Israel- so the name change is related to the nation to come (Gen. 35).

Fast forward to chapters 45 and 46. We have come near to the end of Genesis and the end of Jacob. Why the alternating between names? Because we are being shown the transition from the 'sons of Jacob' to a larger, cohesive collective: the promised nation is coming and being hinted at! By the time you get to 49, Jacob's blessings assume that the promise will come true and they will be a nation. And with Exodus 1 we see not some small family but a rapidly (and I would argue supernaturally) growing nation.

I would also say that Jacob looked at his sons and remembered everything Joseph had seen in his dream. Shocked? Yes, but God had done some stranger things.

David Rudd said...

best quote:

I didn’t make every Sunday of Genesis — I doubt anyone did. But I made enough of them to get a feel for the book.

Didn't this guy get his doctorate in theology (from like Harvard or somewhere?)... and he didn't have a "feel" for Genesis before the "slog"?

[sigh]

Tim Bertolet said...

With respect to the name change. It doesn't seem that hard. God says "I will make you a great nation there [in Egypt]" and so from that time on Jacob begins to bear the name of the great nation. It would seem to be that it is the promise of God that occasions the switch.

An Israelite hearing (or reading) the account would be reminded of the greatness God gave Israel (the nation) in spite of her captivity. So the name change starts from their heading into Egypt. It is a testimony to grace and blessing.

With respect to Genesis 45, I guess brothers coming with wagons (presumably bigger and better than their normal caravan) isn't a sign enough. I guess also the testimony of the grace Joseph shows his brothers, even despite testing them, wouldn't have anything to do with it.

It says they conveyed the words of Joseph to his father which would include the mercy and forgiveness from Genesis 45 especially 45:5. The mercy and compassion is so great it is almost impossible to make up.

For all the talk about being a loving community, welcoming people, forgiving, etc. etc. that we hear as a rallying cry against 'fundies' who take the Bible *gasp* literally... it seems odd that Genesis 45 gets short shrifted despite its powerful testimony that Joseph showed amazing grace to his brothers because he had experienced amazing grace from God.

Those who have experienced great grace recognize its power when they see grace shown even on a human level. The recounting of that grace convinced Jacob in whole or in part (e.g. combined with the wagons Joseph sent).

Tim Bertolet said...

David,
I don't know if I'd crucify him over a casual tone of conversation. It did take them a while to get through the book and we all have had experiences where the Word of God is fresh to us when we return to it even if we have studied it before.

Just my thought.

TBE said...

I love how they essentially voted on how to interpret the passage. Democracy at work, people!

Kaffinator said...

I wonder if they used colored beads to decide.

Tim Bertolet said...

No, no, if it was democracy at work we'd have the heads telling you what to hear and then penalizing us when we don't obey/buy. It would be institutional and bureaucratic.

Oh wait, you meant how democracy should work, not how it is working.

Frank Turk said...

I've got IE 8 at work, and the page isn't crashing for me.

Related to the other comments, stick to the questions at-hand. Let's not go into the other stuff that finding this brief blog post at the linked site will necessarily imply.

What is the end of Genesis about? Does it matter? Can it be "mundane" and still be about what it actually says it is about?

David said...

What strikes me most in the Tony Jones post is a refusal to be taught, as if there is nothing in Christian history that can be brought to bear regarding this passage. He speaks as if they are truly blank slates coming to the Scriptures. But at the same time, they proclaim their opposition to the way the story was told, so maybe they're not really blank slates.

Anyway, ideas that can be put in a nutshell usually belong there.

David said...

And since you snuck that admonition in while I was typing, I'll say that this little gathering rejected Christ wholesale in their analysis of this mundane passage. They as much as said, "He's not here."

Sir Aaron said...

@Frank Turk: It could be because I'm running 64 bit. I got it to load at work on IE6.

It could be "mundane" and still fulfill its objective, although "mundane" is a subjective description. Most people would call the geneaologies mundane, but they serve a purpose.

Genesis is not a novel designed to describe every intimate detail of the patriarchs' lives. Additionally, we don't really need to speculate as to why Jacob suddenly believed his son Joseph was alive. We are told earlier after Joseph's visions that Jacob kept them in mind. No doubt this was part of the reason.

Kaffinator said...

I honestly don't see the difficulty in Jacob's reversal on believing his sons.

Your son is long dead. You've mourned his death for decades. Now your sons tell you he's really alive -- the same sons that once told you he was dead! Disbelief is a reasonable response.

Then they show you the train of gifts. Now you have evidence that fits the facts your sons are telling you. And they really have no reason to lie about it. Belief is a reasonable response.

Am I missing something that would make this a more difficult question?

Barbara said...

Crashed my (IE-8) browser. Hmm.

Barbara said...

Okay I got that site pulled up on a feed site so I could read it.

All I have to say is - WOW.

What a reminder that is, of just how dark the darkness really is, when the transition from Jacob to Israel is given to you in black and white, from the mouth of God Himself and it's missed by the whole group. Wow. I remember being that blind. I am so grateful beyond words that I was given the gift of life, with the grace of eyes with which to see as the Light shines on it. EVER so grateful.

Stefan said...
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Rachael Starke said...

How can a perfect picture of the power of the gospel be mundane?

The brothers bore witness to their unbelieving father of what they'd seen and heard - that their brother was not only alive, but is now, himself, the key to their own deliverance. They brought back tangible evidence of the life that was available to Jacob. Jacob believed and lived.

That's not mundane. That's the gospel.

That poor woman he mentions who got so angry at the Bible needs to redirect her anger.

Eric said...

I am struck by the classic OT typology as I read Gen 45. Joseph was sold/betrayed by his brothers, who meant it for ill. Jesus was betrayed/sold for silver by his disciple Judas, who meant it for ill. God used Joseph's betrayal for His own purposes. God used Jesus' betrayal for His own purposes. Joseph was sent to Egypt by God (v. 8). Jesus was sent to the cross by God, for it was His will. Joseph was used by God to save many. Jesus' sacrifice was used by God to save many. Joseph became an exalted ruler in Egypt. Jesus was exalted to the right hand of God where He rules.

There are likely other facets of this typology that I am missing, but these are the most glaring facets that I found upon a quick reading.

Frank Turk said...

I think I have sympathy with the thoughts being expressed here, but I have a couple of notes that I think are slipping past the net here:

1. In Gen 45-46, the author of Genesis plainly switches back and forth between "Israel" and "Jacob". The question is not "why did God change Jacob's name", but "why doesn't the author pick one and stick with it?" I think that's actually a fair question -- even if I think they got the answer wrong over at Solomon's Porch.

2. It's odd that the blog writer over there calls Gen 45-46 "mundane" and still looks at the passage as if what was missing is the critical or informative part. FWIW, it's not Hemmingway. The point and the evidence will actually be in the text. But that said, it's also amaxing that those folks as a group see the importance of the family relationship and don't see the over-arching importance of family relationship.

As you were. Try to keep it civil even it you are offering a radically-different perspective which connects Genesis to the rest of the Bible they way, say, Jesus Himself did.

Barbara said...

Having only just now read Frank's redirecting comment above, I'll redirect mine as well.

1. Why does the writer switch from Jacob to Israel in Genesis 45 -46? Because Jacob (the supplanter) has been humbled and brought low and is now, seeing his weakness and striving with God for the blessing, by the grace of God made into Israel - he is converted.


2. Is it really random? No. It was ordained from before the foundation of the world, which is one of those wonderful doctrines that grows wonderful teeth and digs deep roots for me as I go through life and hold onto the Sovereign God of the Universe who doesn't have a plan "b" and is not taken surprise by things and does not just randomly do things without a wondrous, great purpose that will always be for the good of His people and His glory.

3. What convinced him that his son is alive? That incredible testimony by his brothers couldn't possibly have had anything to do with it, could it? And perhaps it was given to him to believe them as well.

*sigh* As I said before, I'm just grateful that these things are plain to me as the nose on my face now. There was a time when it was all muddle and mush to me too. But that was before I was brought to the end of myself and had nothing left to do but to bow the knee in my now desperate need to know the truth about God and to know Him in Truth, because finally I knew - by His grace - that He Is all in all, and finally saw the depth of the truth that He is God and I am not.

Barbara said...

*sigh* I meant Frank's comment above the one that he wrote while i was writing mine.

Lunch break is over anyway. :)

Stefan said...
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Jugulum said...

Re: The name change

Chuck and Tim Bertolet pointed to the connection between the name "Israel" and the promise of the great nation coming from Jacob. I have just one thing to add to that, because I think it's about more than just showing how Jacob's descendants turned into a nation.

In 45:25-28, he's called Jacob when his heart is numb with disbelief. After he hears the report of what Joseph had said, his spirit revives. The switch to "Israel" coincides with his restored faith.

If that's what's going on, then he wasn't just rejoicing that his son really is alive--he's rejoicing because he sees how God is fulfilling His promises, like in 45:7. The name change is about restored faith.

However, that doesn't explain why it switches back to Jacob in 46:2 and 46:5.

Stefan said...

Frank wrote:

"Related to the other comments, stick to the questions at-hand. Let's not go into the other stuff that finding this brief blog post at the linked site will necessarily imply."

Sorry, Frank. I deleted my off-topic comments.

But Kaffinator's first comment really did nail it.

Daryl said...

I'd never thought of it before, but I wonder if the back and forth between Jacob and Israel would be somehow representative of our already/not yet standing with God.
That is, we are at once sinner and saint, Jacob and Israel, Cheater and Father of many nations.

As far as the controversy in chapter 22, it's only controversy if you don't like it, or wish it was different.
It's not like, after God told Jacob to sacrifice Isaac, the writer tells us "Go thou and do likewise." I don't understand the controversy, particularly after the writer to the Hebrews pretty much takes the whole "God as Molech" motif right off the shelf and explains it to us.
I suppose the real controversy there, would be the same controversy that wants to call God a "cosmic child abuser" because Jesus was likewise sacrificed for nothing He himself had done.

If the biblical idea of penal substitutionary atonement is controversial, well then the whole book of Genesis is a problem.

Follow all that up with what amounts to the ending of the book with "You meant it for evil but God meant it for good"...nothing like a little sovereignty to turn independent/fair-minded folks like me, right off.

Daryl said...

"...the whole "God as Molech" motif right off the shelf...."

That should say "right out of play" or some other such suitable replacement.

Kaffinator said...

RE: the name changes, it sure looks like the two names are simply used as synonyms referring to the same individual. Perhaps both are used to remind the reader that Israel isn't just a name: it's part of a promise given to Jacob by God (back in Gen 35), a promise that Jacob gets to see fulfilled in Joseph's rescue of his family.

Kaffinator said...

RE: snarkiness, do *not* tell me that Frank's last paragraph in the OP wasn't dripping with it :)

Barbara said...

Building up on Darrel's concept, I'm reminded of John MacArthur's mention in Twelve Ordinary Men of how Jesus would sometimes call Simon Peter "Simon" and sometimes "Peter", and if I remember correctly, it seemed to correlate with whether he was exhibiting character like Simon (like when he was about to deny knowing Jesus) and when he was learning and growing and behaving more as Cephas.

maybe?

Stefan said...

Okay, in Psalm 19, there is a clear intent on the part of David to contrast God as He is revealed in nature—characterized by the name El—with God as He is revealed in His Word—characterized by the covenantal name YHWH.

But because of the name change, this psalm gets mangled by source critics into so-called "Elohist" and "Yahwist" components.

On the other hand, in Genesis 45 to 46, there is a free movement back and forth between the two names. "Jacob" is used alone in 45:25, 27 and 46:6, 15, 18, 19, 22, 25, 26, 27. "Israel" is used alone in 45:21, 28 and 46:1, 29, 30. Both names are used in the same verse in 46:2, 5, and 8.

Without doing a more careful study, it's hard to see what the pattern is. The source critics come at this with their own harebrained answer, but if we accept that a single inspired author wrote this passage, is it just possible that in this case, the author was using the common literary device of using two words for the same things, in order to maintain a more natural flow to the narrative?

And then there is 46:2: "And God spoke to Israel in visions of the night and said, 'Jacob, Jacob.' And he said, 'Here am I.'" This suggests that Jacob's "title" (as it were) of "Israel" (32:28) did not preclude him from still being called Jacob by God, especially in an intimate moment such as this, in which God was speaking directly to him. ...Much like with the name Immanuel for Jesus Christ (Isaiah 7:14; Matthew 1:23).

Stefan said...

I meant that Israel functions more as a title or signifier or second name for Jacob, much as with Immanuel for Jesus.

As a secular analogy, in pre-modern China and Korea, kings and emperors had multiple names: their personal names; their throne names (by which they were called during their lifetimes); and their memorial names (by which they were referred to after their death). But all three names refer to the same person, and are sometimes used interchangeably in modern historical writings.

Stefan said...

Daryl:

Jacob and Israel were the same person, but I'm pretty sure that Jacob and Abraham are two different people. :)

Frank Turk said...

Kaffinator:

Yes, but it is entirely expected of me. Rise about the expectations.

Daryl said...

Stefan,

Father of many nations...Struggles with God...tomayto tomahto...

Oops.

stratagem said...

My IE crashed, but then I removed the anti-heresy software and it worked fine.

Halcyon said...

I think that you already answered your own question(s) Frank: Chapter 45/6 is not mundane b/c it completes the circle: the plan and image of redemption expressed in chapter 3 finds its conclusion and final expression in chapter 45/6. It is the final movement of Genesis' symphony. Of course it's not mundane.

I take that back, it can be "mundane" if you approach it (or any other part of the Bible) with the wishy-washy, post-modern, post-structural, laissez-faire, missing-the-forest-for-the-trees hermeneutic advanced by the likes of Solomon's Porch. I swear, their "version" of "Christianity" makes me nauseous.

Some of my favorite (and most frustrating) money shots from that Tony Jones guys:

"It was an intense evening that included one young mother, while nursing her child, telling all of us that she hated this part of the Bible."

"[A] good summary of Genesis, in a nutshell: Some great stories that tell us a lot about the origins of our faith, and a bunch of places where we sure wish we had more details."

"There’s 'rule' at Solomon’s Porch (we’re not so good at rules) by which we are not to look to other books of the Bible to help us figure out the book that we’re studying."

BTW, Frank:

I know that you've dealt with plenty of knuckle-heads like Solomon's Porch before, but upon reviewing the comment section of Mr. Jones' article, don't people like that "Mr.T!" guy just make you want to punch a hole in the wall? Especially when they accuse you of being "snarky" while their comment oozes with condescension and false-humility. I pity that foo'.

Marla said...

First - Frank, are you trying to make our heads explode? (Don't have enough duct-tape for Tony Jones these days.)

Pertinent:
Why anyone can call Genesis a 'long slog' - I wonder what would be considered a 'quick run'.

Daryl had it right about Ch 22 - it's only controversial if you don't like it.

Joseph's overwhelming grace to his brothers especially v. 7-8 moves me nearly to tears at each reading, especially after viewing Judah's conversion, evidenced by his changed heart in the previous chapter (v. 33-34). After hearing their account in v. 27, why wouldn't Jacob believe them? Rather hard-hearted over at Solomon's porch (or spiritually blind -I wonder which it is....)

Seems the same blind-leading-the-blind type of view applies to the randomness comment.

Stefan said...

Halcyon quoted Dr. Jones from his article on Abraham and Isaac:

"There’s [a] 'rule' at Solomon’s Porch (we’re not so good at rules) by which we are not to look to other books of the Bible to help us figure out the book that we’re studying."

D'oh! Oh man, oh man, oh man! It's precisely because of just that very "hermeneutic" that I read the Bible on and off for 18 years, and yet never got that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.

Then Dr. Jones wrote, "I broke this rule repeatedly last night."

So...do as I say, not as I do?

Stefan said...

And not a single mention in that article of the central point of the passage: that "God will provide for himself the lamb" (Genesis 22:8).

Verification word: "cruis," which is almost (but not quite) crucis, the Latin genitive of crux: "cross."

Just as the substitutionary sacrifice of a ram on Mount Moriah was a foreshadowing of the Cross.

lee n. field said...

"And that’s a good summary of Genesis, in a nutshell: Some great stories that tell us a lot about the origins of our faith, and a bunch of places where we sure wish we had more details."

Somehow, I doubt Tony Jones has read much Meredith Kline.

Frank Turk said...

Halcyon:

Mr. T! makes me want to engage the culture. I have this suspicion that if he and I had an afternoon in a burrito bar to discuss our differences, either he would storm out in 15 minutes or he would emerge 4 hours later - changed.

I know this because such a one as he I once was.

Sir Aaron said...

I'm kinda wondering if anybody who asked the question of why the author changed the name in this verse looked at any commentaries. I bet there is a ton of exegesis on the verse in question. I'm at work so I can't check myself right now.

I just don't get how one can ask such a theological question and discuss it openly without first doing the requisite research.

Gov98 said...

Why didn't Jacob have a hard time believe that Joseph was still alive?

I mean golly they must not have read earlier in Genesis.

Jacob was NEVER told that Joseph was dead. Instead a torn bloody garment was recovered with NO body.

Jacob formed the belief that Joseph was dead, but surely he must have known that there was room for doubt, and now your sons tell you they've seen him and he's alive...of course you're going to believe them.

People forget that as deceptive as the brothers were, my recollection is they NEVER told their father that Joseph was dead, they let him labor under that misimpression.

Stefan said...

Sir Aaron:

Good question, but aren't we supposed to work through the text ourselves first, let Scripture speak for itself, and then go to the commentaries? That's how sermon prep is supposed to be done, at any rate....

A cursory glance through Darby, Henry, and Gill don't yield much (or actually anything, really) on this, except for John Gill's comment on 46:2:

and said, Jacob, Jacob:
not "Israel", the more honourable name he had given him, but Jacob, putting him in mind of his former low estate; and doubling this name, either out of love and affection to him, as Jarchi intimates; or rather in order to awake him, at least to stir up his attention to what he was about to say to him...


But this is really only applicable to this one verse, and doesn't shed much light on the intermixing of "Jacob" and "Israel" elsewhere in the passage.

Strong Tower said...

"What is the end of Genesis about? Does it matter? Can it be "mundane" and still be about what it actually says it is about?"

Spock. No its anti-matter. Only if the green-blooded hobgoblin consummates The Pon Farr.

It's about Genesis 15. Ahh, no, no.. Genesis 3... um Isaiah 66?

Wait. If the promise was to Abraham's seed, Isaac, why was Israel called Israel and not Isaac?

And why, tell us, is the cursed ten called Israel, if all along God intended to give the nation to Judah? Hmmm?

Seriously though, the end of Genesis is a further unfolding of the covenant made with the woman and serves as a transition to the new era (I hesitate to say dispensation being quasi- covenantalist and not wanting to get caught up into JM's nonsensical position). Why any of this is being done is grounded upon the promise of the seed who would be sent, videlicet, John 3:16. The purposive passages serve to emphasize the convenantal character of Genesis and the progressive unfolding of how and when that certified and certain overcomer with God would appear and what he would accomplish. The beginning, i.e. Genesis has an ending... though not quite at this juncture of history as the predictive prophecies continue in Ch 50. History is not without its beginning, so too, it is not without its end. Then end points to the end as it has always since the beginning reminding us from where we came.

It is a lot like the many seasons of 24. Recapitulations happen all the time, recurring themes and names and entanglements all leading to envisioned conclusions. Unlike 24, however, the writer actually does know the whole story season to season, first to last, and isn't writing to tie up loose ends. The predictive prophecies demonstrate that what has happened is not due to chance. It in fact disallows any such drivel by telling the reader what will without fail come about. Israel will indeed in the end come out, become Israel in truth even if it has many other names by which it's called. All these thing as, after all, are all the servants of the Lord.

And seriously, Spock has to be resurrected even though he dies, never to rise again, because his life essence is lost forever. These are the voyages... they are not over until man has now where left to go where left to go where no man has gone before. That is this message that must be preached to the utter most parts of the kosmos.

Jacob, (my youngest son's name), has a Job to do, carry the name of the One, the Son called out, who is figuratively resurrected and comes forth from Egypt, the spiritual name for Sodom and crypto for sinful man, sort of prefiguring the incarnation through the womb of the sinful woman, to the furthest reaches. Beside, repetition is after all the best teacher.

Strong Tower said...

Genesis is also the book of the beginnings of separations. Exodus will continue that theme. God began even in Genesis 4 to show this and in Chapter 50 we find blessings and cursings, a kingdom divided and given to one, and the others passed by.

This is repeated in Exodus, the book of deparures in the Greek, the book of names in Hebrew. Interestingly The Name, and also the name of the father of the blessed line of Shem. Exodus states that God said: "I will put a division between My people and your people. Tomorrow this sign will occur.'"" A repetition of Genesis 3. The Children of Israel are separated out and after the first three curses God no longer visits calamity upon his children. Now in the epistles we read that creations waits for this fullness called the manifestation of the sons of God. The summation, the naming is about God's preserving a people to himself. And they are Israel son's, not Jacob's. The question is, who is Israel?

Jacob said...

"And what's all this about Israelites? I mean, who cares? This is so mundane.

Hey can someone go refill the smoke machine? Thanks. I like this room as dank and mystical as my head and the thoughts wafting around inside it."

Citizen Grim said...

My favorite part about the end of Genesis is how Joseph foreshadows Christ - a beloved son who is rejected by his own people so that he can save not only them, but gentiles, as well.

Sir Aaron said...

Stefan:

yeah, but working it out for yourself doesn't include posting it on a blog and soliciting comments, at least not in my book.

John said...

Well, I've had some time to think about Tony's little post, and I think the thing that annoys me the most is the blatant anti-intellectualism. No thought is given to hermeneutics or how the text will be approached. I imagine that TJ et al wouldn't even be this disrespectful of Hemmingway. "Why does Hemmy talk about all these sharks, and then mention that one was a Mako? I don't know dude, must be totaly random. Hey, man, you got a Gauloises?" Its as if serious study of the Bible is not worth our effort.

Stefan said...

Ah, Gauloises!

The memories of a youth of pretentious pseudo-intellectualism....

Stefan said...

Sir Aaron:

I don't know if you were referring to the Solomon's Porch meanderings, or to Frank's question, or to our attempted answers to his question.

He asked the original post and reiterated in the comments (when we were going off-topic) three questions, including why are the names "Jacob" and "Israel" intertwined throughout Genesis 45 and 46?

The Solomon's Porch "conversation" concluded that it's random (, dude). Frank hinted that he had his own answer, but left it at that. So several of the rest of us tried to work through the text and come up with answers.

Should we just read the Bible and pull unsubstantiable theories out of thin air? No, definitely not. But at the root of the grammatico-historical hermeneutic is the process of reading a text, analyzing it, looking for patterns, allusions, and linguistic devices, considering the context, and reading the passage in light of the rest of Scripture (which Jones said they have a rule against, which rule makes me want to bang my head against a wall), coming to a tentative exegesis, and then consulting our ancestors and contemporaries in the faith to see if our exegesis is sound.

Is it right and proper to do this in the public blogosphere? Well, there is possibility that doing so can open the process up to just the sort of aimless musings we're supposed to avoid. Is that your concern?

Strong Tower said...

Stefan-

Frozen meat chubs cure that.

Halcyon said...

Frank:

True. True.

Stefan said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Stefan said...

Strong Tower:

That'd be an interesting Bible study group.

"Why does Abraham say that God will provide a lamb for a burnt offering?"

"Um, because he was a primitive herdsman who didn't know any better? I feel sad about it, because we should be kind to animals...."

Thwack!

Joshua Allen said...

You read that site? Why?!? They have filters to protect you from offensive trash; you should use one.

TAR said...

Tony Jones huh? Just a little new emergent church "teaching" for mid week reading...uggggg

It is a good thing I believe that God is sovereign in salvation or I would get depressed..
Tripe is tripe even if it is cooked up by an "educated man"

Frank Turk said...

I like it that the star voting for this post is going from the first 4 votes at 4 stars to where it is right now under 3 full stars.

I like it.

Rob Bailey said...

And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he interpreted to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning himself. lk24. Guarantee you it was not mundane.

All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness...2tim3
Unequivocal claim.

14 The natural person does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are folly to him, and he is not able to understand them because they are spiritually discerned. 15 The spiritual person judges all things, but is himself to be judged by no one. 16 “For who has understood the mind of the Lord so as to instruct him?” But we have the mind of Christ.1cor2

I once was as well, Frank.

Semantics are important. "Mundane implies, by the nature of the word, something not of heavenly origin. Not just infuriating, but very dangerous ground. Like the kind that swallows you up.