Open Mic Thread 20

Mic

The open mic thread is where you have the floor and can raise or discuss issues of your choice. There is no such thing as off-topic here. The comments of this thread are free for you to:

  • Discuss things that you have been reading/listening to/watching recently
  • Share interesting links
  • Share stimulating discussions in comment threads
  • Ask questions
  • Put forward a position for more general discussion
  • Tell us about yourself and your interests
  • Publicize your blog, book, conference, etc.
  • Draw our intention to worthy thinkers, charities, ministries, books, and events
  • Post reviews
  • Suggest topics for future posts
  • Use as a bulletin board
  • Etc.

Over to you!

Earlier open mic threads: 123456, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19.

About Alastair Roberts

Alastair Roberts (PhD, Durham University) writes in the areas of biblical theology and ethics, but frequently trespasses beyond these bounds. He participates in the weekly Mere Fidelity podcast, blogs at Alastair’s Adversaria, and tweets at @zugzwanged.
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77 Responses to Open Mic Thread 20

  1. whitefrozen says:

    I’ve found it interesting contrasting and comparing Augustinian and Thomistic metaphysics in terms of the style of writing they lend themselves to.

    Been reading lots of scifi lately, specifically space opera. Lots of fun reading and learning about the development of the genre.

    Paul and the Faithfulness of God has been great so far. As as survey of Roman/2TJ, its stellar as well as a good exposition of various Greek philosophies. I give him credit for taking time to tease out a lot of the subtleties there.

    I’ve had a fairly rewarding time reading lutheran dogmatics – anyone have any particular thoughts on the Finnish interpretation of Luther?

    • Cal says:

      What would you say the biggest difference is between Augustine and Thomas? I figure it’s more complex than the trite Platonic/Aristotelian divide!

      • whitefrozen says:

        Hm. The key metaphysical difference probably boils down how each sees the forms/universals – though actually, now that I think of it, a more fundamental difference is the place each gives to experience and common sense. But a possibly bigger difference is, like I referred to, style. To quite Charlton Heston (who recorded a podcast on this subject once), Plato gives us literature, Aristotle gives us science.

  2. A new book that I think deserves a wide readership is Joe Rigney’s The Things of Earth (http://amzn.to/1DhVZw7). It builds on Piper’s Christian Hedonism by arguing that Christians should enjoy God through his gifts. Rigney leans on Lewis, Edwards, and Doug and N.D. Wilson to help make his point. It’s been very helpful to me as I try to live faithfully in the world God created and I recommend it highly.

  3. Alex says:

    Does anyone here like The Sopranos?

  4. Alex says:

    Is hell an eternal place of conscious torment?

  5. Matt Petersen says:

    Jews don’t eat fat (Lev 3:17). Why did the father of the prodigal son slaughter a fatted calf?

  6. mnpetersen37 says:

    Something I’ve wondered about for a while, and would welcome thoughts from anyone, is how Christ can pray the psalms about salvation, and especially, sinfulness. How can Christ pray

    Wash me throughly from mine iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin.
    For I acknowledge my transgressions: and my sin [is] ever before me.
    Against thee, thee only, have I sinned, and done [this] evil in thy sight: that thou mightest be justified when thou speakest, [and] be clear when thou judgest.
    Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me.

    or

    14 Deliver me from bloodguiltiness, O God, thou God of my salvation: [and] my tongue shall sing aloud of thy righteousness.

  7. Before becoming a Presbyterian (it’s still a little embarassing to say “Reformational Catholic”), I was a confessional Reformed Baptist. The height of our piety was the personalism of looking to Christ, feeding on Christ, abiding in Christ, etc., with “Christ himself.” What this meant was, you were to look to the man Jesus, the personal Jesus. It was essentially revivalistic, personalist doctrine of union with Christ.

    We were heavy on knowing Jesus personally, but it was like knowing your dad or your brother or your wife or Dave. It was a real relationship. All good so far.

    But the “means of grace” were seen as instrumental, if that’s the right word. Communion was meant to pull you past the ritual into a greater union and knowledge with Jesus. You. Not the community, other than the fact that everyone is personally communing with Jesus together in the same room. Reading the Word was about moving you in your affections to love Jesus more, but again, it pulled you past the words themselves into the meaning behind them. Same with baptism. The water, if we’re honest, is only there for the didactic purpose of pulling you past the ritual, past the water, into deeper love for Jesus.

    Having said that and acknowledging that the gentlefolks here might not be familiar with the dynamics of being reformed and a baptist in the US Deep South, what do you think is at play here? I know we could say quickly Gnosticism, individualism, etc—the usual boogeymen. But is there something Cartesian happening? Some assumptions about language? I’m thinking specifically about the social and philosophical conditions.

    One of my teachers, Peter Leithart has taken on both of these notions in a hundred places (most notably “Against Christianity” and “Deep Exegesis”). The most helpful I’ve seen is the signs-as-gifts theme that pops up frequently in his work. Signs and symbols are not only there as conduits for the *real* relationship—they *are* the relationship. Unless a man tells a woman that he loves her and wants to pursue her and she reciprocates, how can it be said that they’re in love?

    Any thoughts on this would be appreciated!

    • Is there something that Wittgenstein and the resulting pragmatic / postliberal tradition could help with? I’m thinking of JKAS’ “Who’s Afraid of Relativism?” here. I can’t imagine a book with that title getting a fair shake in the world I came from!

      • mnpetersen37 says:

        I’ve found Franz Rosenzweig’s Star of Redemption to be extremely helpful. Though, the first third is much more difficult than the rest, and, if you agree with the premise, not as important. So if it seems impenetrably difficult and boring, skip it.

        Wittgenstein seems almost like Rosenzweig / Rosenstock-Huessy light. Something of a good corrective, but missing a lot of the depth they can see.

    • You should read Louis Marie Chauvet’s Symbol and Sacrament, which I’ve summarized on this blog. That would be a helpful place to start.

  8. whitefrozen says:

    Wittgenstein used to be my favourite thinker, but now I think he’s way-over invoked for not very good reasons. His critique of Augustine is interesting because it misses a fairly substantial, and obvious point. But Wittgenstein was never a very good reader of other philosophers.

  9. Matt Petersen says:

    This may be a stretch, but I’d be interested in responses:

    In 2 Corinthians 3, St. Paul quotes Exodus 32 ” חָרוּת עַל־הַלֻּחֹֽת” (Though, oddly, he uses “ἐντετυπωμένη” whereas the LXX uses “κεκολαμμένη”.).

    In 2 Corinthians 3 St. Paul contrasts the lack of freedom in Israel, with the freedom in Christ.

    By the year 200 the Hebrew word for “engraved” used in Exodus 32 punningly meant “freedom”:

    Avot 6, MISHNA B. Said R. Jehoshua b. Levi: “Every day a Heavenly voice goes forth from Mount Horeb, and proclaims as follows: ‘Woe to the creatures for contempt of the Law, for whosoever does not occupy himself in the, Law is called “blameworthy,”‘ as it is written…[Ex. xxxii. 16]: ‘And the tables were the work of God, and the writing, was the writing of God, engraved (charuth) upon the tables.’ Do not read charuth, graven, but cheruth, freedom, for there is no free man but him who is occupied in the study of the Law; as whosoever is occupied in such study, behold he exalts himself, as it is written [Numb. xxi. 19]: ‘And from Mattanah to Nachaliël; and from Nachaliël to Barmoth.'”

    Additionally, the tablets are freedom/engraved just after the building of the golden calf, and just before Moses breaks them because Israel does not keep them (though they had just said they would do and hear the Torah).

    That is, freedom was on the tablets, not on the Israelites. But now, in Christ, St. Paul says, we behold God, as Moses did, face to face, and having the law written [engraved] on our hearts, and are free.

    Might that same pun be somewhere in the background of 2 Corinthians 3? Perhaps even the exegetical tradition that gave rise to that Mishna (with its emphasis on not occupying himself in Torah/the veil that covers Israel when occupying himself with Moses)?

    • I wouldn’t put such a pun past Paul.

      • Matt Petersen says:

        One of the problems is that I’m not sure the word existed in St. Paul’s time. It isn’t used in the OT, at all, but is used in Mishnaic Hebrew. (Though, I believe it is used in the modern Passover liturgy–I’m not sure how ancient that is.)

    • Matt Petersen says:

      Also, why does “And from Mattanah to Nachaliël; and from Nachaliël to Barmoth” mean “whosoever is occupied in such study, behold he exalts himself”?

      • Matt Petersen says:

        Perhaps “from the gift (Matanach) (Torah) to the torrents of God (Nachaliel) (Torah study) to the the great high place (Barmoth).”

  10. whitefrozen says:

    Does Jesus’ rebuke of his disciples in Luke 9:51-55 = condemnation/rejection of the violent act of Elijah?

    • No, I don’t think so. Jesus is rather rebuking them for suggesting such violent judgment in a way that would avoid the judgment that he faced at the cross. It was a ‘get behind me Satan’ moment (hence the reference to their not knowing the spirit that they were of in some texts).

  11. whitefrozen says:

    What is Radical Orthodoxy? I just saw an interesting looking book about John Duns Scotus and RO, but Ive not heard of it till now.

  12. J Phillips says:

    I know there are quite a few avid NT Wright readers on this site, so I’m wondering if anyone might help me gain a little clarity on something that has confused my reading a bit recently as I work through his Christian Origins series.

    After completing JVG, I felt that I had been given a rather breathtaking glimpse at the unity of Jesus’s project eschatologically; the “near” event (ie. literally to arrive within a generation) of the destruction of the temple — and all that this will mean for the kind of climax Israel is to have, and who will be vindicated — brings into focus a kind of prophetic vocation that makes perfect sense of the actions and discourses that make up the gospels.

    So far, so good… or so I thought, but then I have begun to feel some difficulty in placing this near reconciliation of the people of Israel and God alongside the more distant one that is the focus of the next volume, RSG. Here, Wright is treating the relationship between Jesus’s resurrection and the age to come within which God’s completed plan will involve the bodily resurrection of all and redemption of creation. But that is another eschatology… a more distant one, and rather different in nature from the nearer prophetic vocation of Jesus in relation to the events to come in the first century.

    Essentially my problem is just this: given that Wright worked so acutely in the previous volume to suspend our typical “parousia” reading of redemption and eschatology announced by Jesus, how do we piece together that approach with the other side of the resurrection and with those places in which Wright now reads Jesus as speaking of a future or final age of resurrection (“in that age…”) ? As someone who is always trying to see all the parts as cohering into a unified whole, I have difficulty placing these aspects alongside each other. In what way does the near eschatology of Jesus, his vocation to reconstitute the people of Israel at its coming climax in the first century, fit with his revelation and promise of a truly distant age-to-come in which resurrection will be the guiding term? Is it simply that with God’s promise to Israel being fulfilled in Jesus, through resurrection and opening up in an unexpected way his welcome into the awaited kingdom of God, this event also contains and manifests, at Easter, the promise that redemption of all creation in resurrection will follow?

    I’m also just a bit lost in mentally situating the epistles in relation to these two ends, as they for the most part stand between Easter and the completion of the original eschatological event of temple destruction, yet seem oriented exclusively towards the much more distant and final redemption, leaping over the nearer one. But I’m going in circles a bit and need to step back to rethink, most likely.

  13. Nathan Barnes says:

    I don’t think the Underground Thomist’s account of the Aqedah holds up fully (though it is close). As Levenson points out, God did not command Abraham to kill Isaac, but to sacrifice Him. (Levenson even goes so far as to say that the ancients probably didn’t think sacrifice involved dying. And McClymond argues that in the Vedic system–I believe, but it may have been the Jewish system–sacrifices are explicitly not violent: An animal that dies in a sacrifice dies non-violently. An animal that dies naturally, dies violently.) And Abraham was commended for not withholding (=sacrificing) his only son, and, if James’ commentary is authoritative, justified, precisely, for the work of sacrificing Isaac on the altar (Jas 2:21). (Not that divine command theory is correct.)

    We should instead, it seems, say that the LORD commanded Abraham to give Isaac (and thus all his seed) to Him. And that this gift was, in fact, given, and was good.

    (Moshe Halbertal defines sacrifice as a gift to a superior, and while it is perhaps not a complete definition of sacrifice, it does seem to get at at least an important part of sacrifice.)

    That the gift to the LORD involves the death of the one given is still problematic, but perhaps not for the reason we think. A thought-experiment before we fill this out. Were the Norse correct, and Odin could take people to Valhalla, and part of their transfer was their physical death; then there wouldn’t be something wrong with giving a child to Odin. To modern eyes, that is, ex hypothesi, foolish eyes, they would seem to die, and their going hence to be their utter destruction: But they would be at war (again, for emphasis, ex hypothesi). The problem is that Odin does not exist, and the modern view is, at least relative to sacrifices to Odin, correct. In the sight of the unwise they seemed to go to Valhalla, and their departure is taken for blessing. But It was, in fact, their utter destruction. However, this does illustrate why we see sacrifice to a god abhorrent: We do not believe the god exists, and so capable of anything, and were we inclined to believe in his existence, we would not trust him to do good to us or those given to him.

    Giving our children to the LORD, however, is commendable (1 Sam 1:11, Ex 22:29; Ex 13:2; Ex 34:19; Num 3:12; Num 18:15; Lk 2:23). But, this at least usually, does not involve the child’s death (whether it ever can is the question at hand[1]), and, so is not quite so problematic. (Though, the giving of children, say, to a monastery–or to the Temple–raises other sorts of questions: Specifically, are we not therefore taking away their ability to freely choose?) Gifts that involve human death are, nevertheless, problematic, because death is an enemy. And Isaac’s death would have been problematic precisely because “in Isaac shall thy seed be numbered” (as jbudziszewski mentions). Thus, as Hebrews claims, Abraham believed God’s word of promise and of command, and trusting (faithing, were that a word) that God could raise Isaac up from the dead, gave Isaac to the LORD. And it was credited to him as righteousness.

    _________
    [1] I think we can be sympathetic to the following as well (from Moshe Halbertal):

    In the Jewish chronicles of martyrdom during the first and second Crusades, sacrifical language becomes common to describe the Jewish martyrs. The death of Jews by the crusaders is depicted as a sacrifical offering, and the killing of children by their parents in order to avoid forced conversion is portrayed as an enactment of the binding of Isaac, the akedahwith the full language of the sacrificial temple rites.

    (Sympathetic with parents forced such a choice, even if we think they chose wrongly.)

  14. Matt Petersen says:

    I’m curious for your thoughts regarding Derek’s post on Turretin and multiple meanings. On the one hand, I agree that it’s very good, and helps a lot with clarity.

    On the other hand, Turretin seems to conflate the objective and trajective meaning of the text, to seek to ground the projective and subjective meaning of the text in the objective; and at the same time, by focusing on “meaning”, not action (including the action of speaking) to attempt to ground the text on the subjective. (Since thoughts are internal, and so conveying meaning is “subjective”–at least for Rosenzweig, and I think also for ERH.)

    This relates to the questions above regarding Wittgenstein.

    (And again, to be clear, I appreciated the post.)

  15. Hans says:

    Can someone direct me to an article(s), post(s), or book(s) that examines the way in which a demand for proof of God’s existence (and the subsequent evaluation of evidence) can simply be a way of smuggling a kind of Enlightenment rationalism, materialism, or empiricism into the discussion at the outset?
    I am generally aware of some of the hidden assumptions behind this kind of demand, but need to get a bit more sharpened up on the key issues. Thank-you!

    • http://www.firstthings.com/article/2010/05/believe-it-or-not

      http://www.firstthings.com/article/2014/05/gods-and-gopniks

      I’m not seeing any of Edward Feser’s articles after a quick search, but he has several on his blog (edwardfeser.blogspot.com).

      Both their books should be excellent–though I’ve only read Hart’s.

      The Experience of God: Being, Consciousness, Bliss

      The Last Superstition: A Refutation of the New Atheism

      • Hans says:

        Matt. Thanks for the leads. I found that Hart’s first chapter in “The Experience of God…” was really quite helpful. The other articles were well done as well. Thank-you.

    • whitefrozen says:

      A demand for evidence isn’t always a sign of Enlightenment rationalism, which in itself is something that needs to be unpacked and examined critically.

      • Hans says:

        whitefrozen,
        Well said. I heartily agree. There is a kind of aversion to evidence and seeking of proof that is simply a kind of fideism.
        The kind of proof-seeking that I’m ambivalent about is construing one’s demand for “proof” in such a way that every kind of evidence put forward that doesn’t fit neatly into a materialistic / scientism perspective is simply dismissed out of hand.
        One example of this kind of materialistic question-begging might be found in “The God Delusion” in which Dawkins supposes that he’s scores a big hit on theism with the question “who made God?” (pg. 135) and then goes on to say rather triumphantly: “A designer God cannot be used to explain organized complexity because any God capable of designing anything would have to be complex enough to demand the same kind of explanation in his own right.”
        Evidence / proof seeking is good. Evidence / proof seeking only insofar as the evidence found fits into one’s pre-commitment to a materialist straightjacket seems to be a waste of time.

  16. The Man Who Was . . . says:

    I just read Leithart’s A House for My Name. It is a very good book. He is a truly great reader of the Bible. Though I think both Through New Eyes and Against Christianity are more truly essential.

  17. quinnjones2 says:

    Hi Alastair,
    Thank you for re-tweeting the link Re: ‘Marriage Equality’ tweeted by Karen Swallow Prior, and for the link you posted on her thread – the Fredrik deBoer article ‘It’s good for me to feel this kind of revulsion’. Yes, revulsion is a good response to the ugliness of incestuous relationships. I have before me now the classic book by Christine A. Courtois, ‘Healing the Incest Wound’. The first chapter is entitled ‘Incest:If you think the word is ugly’. I’m not surprised that this highly specialized but also very readable book has attracted such a large and diverse readership.
    Interestingly for me, Courtois’ original specialism was rape victims. In 1972 Courtois co-founded a campus rape crisis centre at the University of Maryland. She wrote in her introduction to the first edition of her book: ‘As rape crisis centres opened in response to a growing awareness of stranger rape, they also were receiving calls from incest victims desperate for understanding and assistance. We did not know how to help these women… We began to conceptualize incest as a compound form of rape.’
    I am mindful of the fact that the ‘Marriage Equality’ link is about ‘consensual’ relationships, but I believe that although these may differ from rape as it is legally defined, they are still rape – ‘soul rape.’ I have yet to identify the author of the phrase ‘soul rape’, but for now I would just like to endorse it.
    Thank you again.

  18. quinnjones2 says:

    A P.S. to my post dated 11.45 a.m. on 19/01/2015:
    It occurred to me that people supporting ‘Marriage Equality’ might think that conceptualizing incest as a form of rape is a bit outlandish!
    My understanding of the word ‘rape’ is partly influenced by its etymology, and the fact that, according to some sources, it has the same root as ‘rob’. In a nutshell, I believe that incestuous relationships, including ‘consensual’ ones, are not what God has in mind for us, and that participants in such relationships are therefore not right with God, and are also robbing themselves and each other of the truly loving relationships that our gracious, wise, loving God wants us to have.

  19. The Man Who Was . . . says:

    Nice article on the limits of IQ in your delicious feed. This is why, even though I think that IQ is real and describes a particular (and very useful) form of rationality quite well, I am not all that concerned with studies that show social conservatives and religious people have lower IQs. That social conservatives and religious people are lacking in IQ in comparison to other groups (something I think is true) doesn’t necessarily mean they are more likely to be wrong.

    Time to reread Bruce Charlton’s clever sillies article again.

    • I’ve had interesting conversations with my girlfriend on some of these issues as they relate to different academic cultures (she has studied in Cambridge and Harvard and has inside knowledge of what both systems look for in and how they select prospective students).

      The Cambridge system seems to be ruthlessly academic, designed to push you to breaking point. It is good at selecting for the most gifted of academic students. It is a disputational, assertive, and agonistic academic culture, where people are expected to fight their corner, think for themselves, and be exposed to unsettling ideas. The Cambridge system tends to reward those who are the most independent-minded and the most confident thinkers. The people who thrive within it are often eccentric and ‘imbalanced’ and have the characteristics of genius (as opposed to conformist modes of high intelligence). The academic system isn’t very forgiving and those who aren’t performing will experience serious consequences.

      By contrast, Harvard seems to look for ’rounded’ persons, in a way that encourages well-manicured CVs, people who are socially shrewd, who are hyper-aware of their image, high achieving conformists, who will bend over backwards not to say the ‘wrong’ thing or disrupt liberal orthodoxies. Once you are admitted, you are largely guaranteed high results. However, my girlfriend was disappointed by how weak the academic culture of Harvard was in comparison to Cambridge. At Harvard everyone looked great on their CVs, but their acute awareness of image and networking often meant that many weren’t really invested in what they were doing beyond the way that it would factor into their employment or career prospects (my girlfriend describes students often dropping into extra-curricular events and leaving shortly afterwards, just in order to add another supposed activity to their CVs). Students were admitted in large part for their ability to conform to Harvard culture or contribute to its liberal façade of diversity. Part of this impulse expressed itself in a refusal to entertain or truly to engage with unpopular viewpoints.

      All of this makes me wonder whether Bruce Charlton is correct to attribute the lack of common-sense to the IQ elite, rather than to an academic culture that has a greater emphasis on social intelligence and the corresponding drive for accommodating ‘truths’.

  20. Will Sprague says:

    So I have been thinking about baptism, and baptismal regeneration, specifically what the word regeneration means and how it relates to faith in traditional formulations. One of the major things that happened when I became Reformed was believing that regeneration is logically (if not chronologically) prior to saving faith. I think this is true still, but the more I puzzle over NPP and FV writers’ formulations (along with your insights on this blog and on the podcast) the more I am thinking that somehow, our union with Christ must be prior to faith (tentatively) because regeneration is something that must happen in union with Christ, and is logically prior to faith… If this is so, then must faith therefore be necessarily a participation in the faith of Christ? Doesn’t this solve some lingering issues each side has had with the other? This seems to ameliorate the tension between the objective and subjective genitube folks at least…

    This may be totally uncontroversial here, but I have been playing with this idea for a while, but am not in an ecclesiastical setting where these new perspectives are viewed at all favorably, so I want to see if this way of thinking is at all reasonable.

    • Will Sprague says:

      Genitive*

      Clearly phone typing is risky….

      • Far from bringing peace between 2 sides of that particular issue, I’ve found it really helpful to put the biblical use of “regeneration” in front of the systematic theological use of it. It shows up twice, once in Matthew 19:28 and Titus 3:5. Neither of these texts are strictly about some kind of irreversible change in the heart or, as Calvin used it, growth in Christ throughout the entire life.

        The Regeneration is the new creation that Christ brings. It’s the Church, the washed (Titus 3:5) Spirit-ual body of Christ.

        Which begs the question—why are we still using it in the systematic theological sense?

        But that kind of talk will get you flogged where I’m from.

    • Thanks for the thoughtful comment, Will. A few remarks in response:

      1. The choice between objective and subjective genitive when speaking about the faith of Christ may be an unhelpful one. Thinking about it according to the analogy of the ‘faith of Abraham,’ we can see that that expression refers both to Abraham’s own faith and to the faith of the one associated with him. I see little reason why we shouldn’t read the faith of Christ in the same way: it is a sort of faith grounded in Christ’s own faithful action, which also comes to characterize all of those associated with him and sharing in his life by his Spirit.

      2. One of the points that I would emphasize is the redemptive historical character of the faith of Jesus Christ, regeneration, and union with Christ. I fear that certain forms of the ordo salutis dull our sense of this. Old Testament believers weren’t united with Christ in the way that we are, although they did have anticipatory forms of this. Likewise, they didn’t have the faith of Jesus Christ, and, prior to the resurrection, no one was ‘regenerated’ (I’ve commented a bit on this here, here, and here). We must reclaim these terms for their appropriate new covenant referents, rather than relating them chiefly to the more general reality of how an individual comes to spiritual awareness and trust in God.

      3. I believe that the Reformed tradition is right to claim that a spiritually vivifying work of God’s Spirit must precede the individual’s expression of personal faith. However, I wouldn’t call this work of Spirit ‘regeneration’.

      4. When we are talking about ‘regeneration’ in the more specific New Testament sense of the word this occurs in a manner simultaneous with the individual’s union with Christ. As we are united with Christ, as Calvin recognized, we receive all of the blessings with him—justification, sanctification, etc.

      5. I don’t believe that our first coming to faith must be viewed as the sort of participation in the faith of Christ that the New Testament has in mind. I would view this first coming to faith as more akin to the faith of Old Testament believers, a faith that anticipates, in a reality-filled promise of, and is drawn to the faith of Christ as its telos, culmination, and full realization (cf. Hebrews 11:1—12:2). Sharing in the faith of Christ is, I believe, something more associated with our being plugged into his life within the Church. Once again, appreciating our personal salvation as something that occurs within a larger redemptive historical reality is crucial.

  21. The Man Who Was . . . says:

    RE: the Douglas Moo article on translation

    I worry that many Biblical translations try to replace imagery with an easily digested meaning derived from that imagery. I think that neglects the formative influence imagery has on us.

    • Very much agreed. It is all too commonly assumed that biblical imagery is just metaphor that can be dispensed with or substituted for, rather than purposefully drawing upon and meaningfully situating itself within a rich and highly developed network of symbolism.

  22. quinnjones2 says:

    Hi TMWW
    Good point about imagery -it’s difficult to translate/’transplant’ from one language to another and from one culture to another in a way that truly does it justice. Translation work is a subtle art anyway, with different languages being ‘knitted together’ in such different ways.I have never been completely satisfied with my own translation work – it’s not always easy to find ‘le mot juste’, but I don’t like settling for a near-enough interpretation, and keep hoping I’ll find a better one. I’m not at all surprised that there is so much debate about translations of the scriptures🙂

  23. quinnjones2 says:

    Hi Alastair,
    Just noticed your post 🙂 – I was still writing mine when you posted it!

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