Saturday, 27 September 2008

Interpretation of the Decalogue

At the end of a review of this history of interpretation of the Decalogue, from Jewish midrash through Christian allegory and finally including the historical-critical debate that flourished in Europe, Childs has the following to say:

Certainly it remains a haunting question for anyone who has followed this history of exegesis whether one can really describe it as a history of steadily increasing insight. Perhaps a chart of rising and falling lines would be more appropriate. Certainly, the modern critical period has brought a new dimension of philological and historical precision to bear. Yet to the extent to which the scholar now finds himself increasingly estranged from the very substance which he studies, one wonders how far the lack of content which he discovers stems from a condition in the text or in himself.

Childs, Exodus, 437.

Update: I just read this post again after a few months break. Again, the question arises: why is Childs so cool?

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