Proof Texts

Ian Hutchesson mc2499 at
Tue Dec 19 17:01:27 EST 2000

I wonder if the moderator's may intervene on aspects of this thread.

What NT understandings have to do with the significance of an OT/HB text, as
we have to deal with it, may be as relevant as Charles Manson's thoughts to
Beatles lyrics.

I have tried to put forward on this list the necessity of working to
understand the writer's context in order to understand what he is writing
about. Ideas written centuries after the time of writing have nothing to do
with that contextualisation necessary to understand the text.


Charles David Isbell wrote:

>But I do not think
>any NT reconstruction of a biblical oracle allows interpreters of either
>faith to withdraw from the struggle to understand the meaning of a sermon
>a person preaching almost 600 years before there was a Jesus with whom to
>connect Isaiah 42.   Surely for a 6th century prophet in Babylon to have
>spoken about events in 1st century Roman Judea would have been the height
>irresponsibility to his own people, [..]

(I understand your argument here, Charles, and partially agree, but it would
seem to me that you are taking a literary context as though it were a
historical context, which seems to me not to be kosher in scholarly debate.)

>to employ the NT to interpret Isaiah is to take a blind alley.  Such a
>method cannot help us to understanding ISAIAH, but has significance only
>with respect to one's understanding of the NT and Christianity.

And I'm in wholehearted agreement with this sentiment.


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