Chris M. M. Brady christian.brady at tulane.edu
Thu Dec 2 11:03:47 EST 1999

on 11/20/99 9:27 AM, Jim West (jwest at highland.net) had this to say:

> At 07:41 PM 11/18/99 +1100, you wrote:
>> Please bear with me if my question is a
>> little dumb. Would someone please explain the
>> concept of "midrash"? I would also appreciate
>> a critical response to it with reference as to why it
>> is/is not superior to the historical-grammatical
>> approach to exegesis and why it should/should not
>> be used.
>> Also, is this method truly the method used by Jesus
>> along with the apostles?
> Midrash- from the verb darash "to seek" is a method of rabbinic exposition
> and exegesis which seeks to find the meaning, to the minutest of details, of
> the text of the bible.  as to whether jesus used midrashic methods it is
> hard to say since we dont have any expositions of texts by him.  that the
> apostles used midrashic method seems as uncertain as well, since we dont
> have any exegeses by them either.  it is, however, doubtful as none of them
> were trained as rabbis.

Well, from Paul we have Gal. 3.16 "Now the promises were made to Abraham and
to his offspring; it does not say,  'And to offsprings,' as of many; but it
says,  'And to your offspring,' that is, to one person, who is Christ."

This is, I believe, a fairly clear example of midrash. For a similar,
rabbinic emphasis upon the singular form in a biblical text see Shmot Rabbah
to 15.1.


C h r i s   M   M    B r a d y
Director * Jewish Studies * Tulane University
christian.brady at tulane.edu 

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