The art and science, some say theory and practice), of interpretation (here and now)
What do Fee & Stuart say is the aim of a good interpretation?
To get at the "plain meaning" of the text.
What do Fee & Stuart is NOT the aim of good interpretation?
The aim of good interpretation is not uniqueness; one is not trying to discover what no one else has ever seen before.
Fee & Stuart define "The Bible" in part as... The Bible is not a series of...
-The Bible is GOD'S WORD -The Bible is Not a series of propositions and imperatives (a collection of sayings from God)
What kinds of "communication" does God use to convey His Word?
Almost every available kind of communication: Narrative history, genealogies, chronicles, laws of all kinds, poetry of all kinds, proverbs, prophetic oracles, riddles, drama, biographical sketches, parables, letters, sermons, & apocalypses.
"To interpret properly the "then and there" of the biblical texts, you must..."
not only know some general rules that apply to all the words of the Bible, but you also need to learn the special rules that apply to each of these literary forms (genres).
What is the first of two types of context listed in the reading? (Fee/Stuart)
-HISTORICAL CONTEXT: Deals w/ the time/culture of the author & his readers (geographical/topographical/political factors relevant to author's setting) & the occasion of the book/letter/psalm/prophetic oracle/etc.
What is the second of two types of context listed in the reading? (Fee/Stuart)
-LITERARY CONTEXT: words only have meaning in sentences & biblical sentences for the most part only have clear meaning in relation to preceding and succeeding sentences
Why are these items (two types of contexts) important?
Reading/Studying the Bible intelligently demands careful reading, and this includes learning to ask the right questions of the text.
According to the authors (Fee/Stuart), "The true meaning of the biblical text for us is..."
what God originally intended it to mean when it was first spoken.
What is the problem with using only one translation?
You are thereby committed to the exegetical choices of the translation as the Word of God
What is the traditional view of how the Bible was written?
-Accepts biblical docs at face value -BIBLICAL DOCS CLAIM TO RECORD HISTORY -Assumes docs ARE historical, even while assessing the claim -Tries to correlate how various historical materials fit together, recognizing there are gaps in our understanding
How does the traditional view of the origin of the Bible differ from the modern view presented in the introduction? (Harbin)
-TRADITIONAL: Assumes the Bible is a historical doc to be taken at face value. -MODERN: Assumes the Bible is pious fiction to be accepted only when supported by modern science
What is the concept of canon, and why is it important?
-CANON: Used to describe the body of literature we call the Bible or Scripture (refers to a group of writing regarded as authentic) -It's important b/c it was the foundation of God's written Word
Why did it take time for the NT canon to be agreed upon?
-Jews who knew the law measured Jesus' life against OT standards -Early followers of Christ measured NT writers against OT standard and used the same process of guidance by the Holy Spirit to validate the new writings.
What is the significance of the Dead Sea Scrolls?
They validate the accuracy of historical data presented in the OT
In what three languages were the 66 books of the Protestant Bible originally written?
-Hebrew & Aramaic (OT) -Greek (NT)
Given what you have read thus far what translation are you inclined to use as your primary 'reading' text?
What is the absolute central element in Hebrew narrative?
Words and actions shape the characterization in narratives. Why?
Hebrew narrative is simply not interested in creating a "visual image" of the characters. More important are matters of status (wise, wealthy, etc.) or profession ("captain of the guard", "wife", "cupbearer", etc.) or tribal designation (Midianites)
What are the reasons for the use of structural features 'repetition' & 'inclusion' according to the text?
-Hebrew narratives were designed primarily for hearers not readers. B/C these text were designed for the hearer in view, they contain structural features designed to make the narrative memorable.
What is the implicit teaching component found in biblical narratives?
-Clearly implying something without actually stating it.
T/F: 40% of the literary genre in the OT is narrative. It is likely the most misinterpreted & misapplied segment of Scripture.
What is the crucial difference between biblical narratives & other types of narratives?
-The plot in Hebrew narratives moves at a much faster pace than modern narration. -God is the ultimate character, the supreme hero of the story.
Know 'protagonist" and 'antagonist' in the Bible.
-PROTAGONIST: God -ANTAGONIST: Satan (or evil people/powers) -AGONIST: God's People
What is "Internal & External Evidence" as discussed by the authors? (Fee/Stuart)
EXTERNAL EVIDENCE: Has do w/the quality & age of the manuscripts that support a given variant (character/quality of the manuscripts) INTERNAL EVIDENCE: Has to do w/the copyists and authors (the kinds of mistakes to which copyists were susceptible)
What narratives 'are not' according to the text? What kind of teaching does take place?
Track the author's example of implicit teaching found in the Ruth narrative. (Fee/Stuart)
People relegate (send or consign to an inferior position, place, or condition) the text to merely reflecting another meaning beyond the text.
Ignoring the full historical/literary contexts & often the individual narrative, people concentrate on small units only & thus miss interpretational clues.
Involves picking and choosing specific words and phrases to concentrate on while ignoring the others and ignoring the overall sweep of the narrative being studied.
The assumption that principles for living can be derived from all passages.
Also known as individualizing, this refers to reading Scripture & supposing that any or all parts apply to you or your group in a way that they do not apply to everyone else.
Closely related to personalizing. It is to appropriate the text for purposes that are quite foreign to the biblical narrative. It is both misappropriation and decontextualizing.
Define/Explain: False Assumption
A form of decontextualizing. It is to read into a biblical narrative suggestions or ideas that come from contemporary culture that are simultaneously foreegin to the narrator's purpose and contradictory to his point of view.
Define/Explain: False Combination
Combines elements from here and there in a passage and makes a point out of their combination even though the elements themselves are not directly connected in the passage itself.
When the plain meaning of the text leaves people cold, producing no immediate spiritual delight or saying something other than what they wish it said, they are often tempted to redefine it to mean something else.
T/F: "Narratives are precious to us because they so vividly demonstrate God's involvement in the world and illustrate His principles and calling." (105)
What are the first 5 principles for Interpreting Narratives at the close of chapter 5? (Fee/Stuart)
See Ch. 5 (Fee/Stuart)
What are the second 5 principles for Interpreting Narratives at the end of chapter 5? (Fee/Stuart)
See Ch. 5 (Fee/Stuart)
The careful, systematic study of the Scripture to discover the original, intended meaning. (then and there)
What do Fee & Stuart say is the "only proper control for hermeneutics"?
The proper control for hermeneutics is to be found in the original intent of the biblical text.
What are potential problems with a "fuller" or "deeper" meaning?
"Who speaks for God?" -Roman Catholicism has a "magisterium" who determines for all the fuller sense of the text. Protestants, h/w, have no magisterium, & we should be properly concerned w/e anyone says he/she has God's deeper meaning to a text.
What is the first concern of translators? Why?
-To be sure the Hebrew/Greek text they're using is as close as possible to the original wording as it left the author's hands. (Are these the very words of Mark/Paul? etc.) -Improper interpretation can/will obscure the true meaning of the text.
Describe "Original Language".
The language that one is translating from; in our case, Hebrew, Aramaic, or Greek.
Describe "Receptor Language".
The language that one is translating that one is translating into; in our case, English
Describe "Historical Distance".
Has to do with the differences that exist b/w the original language and the receptor language, both in matters of words, grammar, and idioms as in matters of culture and history.
Describe "Formal Equivalence".
The attempt to keep as close to t of the Hebrew or Greek, both words and grammar, as conveniently put into understandable English. Translations based on formal equivalence will keep historical distance intact at all points. (Literal Texts)
Describe "Functional Equivalence".
The attempt to keep the meaning of the Greek/put their words/idioms into what'd be the normal same things in English. They keep historical distance on all historical/factual matters but UPDATE matters of language/grammar/style. (Dynamic equivalent)
Describe "Free Translation".
The attempt to translate the ideas from one language to another with less concern about using the exact words of the original (paraphrase). Tries to eliminate as much of the historical distance possible and still be faithful to the original text.
Describe "Theory of Translation".
Whether one puts emphasis on Formal or Functional. The degree to which one is willing to go in order to bridge the gap b/w the two languages either in use of words/grammar or in bridging the historical distance by offering a modern equivalent.
According to Fee/Stuart, what are the "Problem Areas" in various translations?
WEIGHTS/MEASURES/MONEY EUPHEMISMS: Indirect expressions to describe something blunt VOCABULARY: Finding the right words to translate into WORDPLAYS: Words in the original language that sound alike but have diff. meaning. GRAMMAR/SYNTAX MATTERS OF GENDER
What are the key characteristics of the modern view of biblical interpretation? (Harbin)
-Liberal -Pious fiction to be accepted only when supported by modern science -Supporters label bulk of the Bible as "myth" -Issue is a set of philosophical assumption rather than conflicting evidence
How did the modern view develop? (Harbin)
-Several scholars made new theories about how the OT was composed (late 1800s) -Theories were brought together in 1878 (Julius Wellhausen) -Scholars adopted his theory for the OT and then applied his principles to find multiple sources in the NT
What are some of the assumptions that led to that process (modern view)? (Harbin)
Based on issues of style, vocabulary, and subject matter, Wellhausen and others concluded that...the five books we have today (Pentateuch) are a product of several writers over centuries.
How are the traditional and modern views of God different? (Harbin)
-TRADITIONAL: God, by His nature, may intervene in space-time history on occasion, and in fact is recorded as having done so. -MODERN: God could not (or would not) intervene in space-time history
What is the value of archaeology to biblical studies? (Harbin)
-We're better able to place biblical studies within cultural contexts -We've realized that biblical history fits within an overall ANE historical context, although there is some debate on how the pieces fit in
What are some of the limitations of archaeology? (Harbin)
-Archaeology doesn't prove the Bible -Provides 2 types of data: WRITTEN/NONWRITTEN... N/W can be quite puzzling -N/W is very hard to date -
What is history, and why is it important? (Harbin)
-HISTORY: The recording of eyewitness accounts of events in written form -It's important b/c this principle also gives us our basis for defining civilization. Usually, the concept of civilization is predicted on the knowledge of writing.
In the NT, why were many of the Epistles written before the Gospels?
-The early church was convinced the return of Jesus was right around the corner (so, no need for the gospel) -Church realized His return was not around the corner & eyewitnesses of Jesus' resurrection began to be martyred and otherwise die off
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