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Comparative Religion

From Judaism to Christianity: Tradition and Transition. A by Patricia Walters

By Patricia Walters

As a much achieving tribute to the celebrated occupation of Thomas H. Tobin, S.J., a workforce of remarkable biblical students has joined to supply essays at the spiritual milieu of the traditional Mediterranean area. Challenged via Hellenistic and Greco-Roman cultural and political domination, the non secular struggles of Jewish and, later, Christian groups sought to keep up culture in addition to mitigate transition. Jewish responses to a Hellenistic international are printed anew within the lifeless Sea Scrolls and the works of Artapanus and Philo. additionally, Christian perspectives at the transitory international of the early centuries of the typical period are dropped at mild within the New testomony literature, apocryphal texts, and Patristic writings. Professors and scholars alike will enjoy the intensity and breadth of this clean scholarship.

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Additional resources for From Judaism to Christianity: Tradition and Transition. A Festschrift for Thomas H. Tobin, S.J., on the Occasion of His Sixty-fifth Birthday

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As will be seen, that in turn has a real bearing on the ethics of interpretation and the issue regarding the significance of multiple interpretations of the same text. It also raises the issue of the status of historical criticism within an intentionalist theory. Although in the context of a historical-critical approach the role of the canon is significantly muted, I will nevertheless finish with some provisional observations on the differences a “scriptural” understanding of the biblical texts would entail for our conclusions.

One can only suspect that interest in this kind of “game” is bound to wane. Although the verbal criterion had the advantage of limiting the number of valid readings and allowing one to go beyond what the author intended, the problem is that other criteria could do the same thing. For example, Knapp and Michaels suggest, one could have stipulated that a text means what its author meant plus whatever else it can mean in a particular language except for the verbs, as they can mean what the author intended and their opposite.

1 Leaving aside the question of historical criticism’s status as a “science” and a now largely discredited historical positivism, there is no gainsaying prima facie how embarrassing the multiplicity of contradictory interpretations has been to a methodology dominant for the last two centuries and now subject to constant criticism. This is all the more the case in the face of newer interpretive approaches that, for their part, are skeptical of the idea that texts can have only one “fixed” meaning, identified or not with the intention of an author.

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