The Most Beautiful Daughters—or Bride—in All the Land

(following comprises the final installation of the Saturday series on Secondary Illuminations of Scripture.) In our last post, we noticed that Job as a type of Christ receives a double portion of all he had before his suffering and passes this on to both his sons and daughters.  The Bible describes Job’s daughters as the most beautiful women of the …

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Job’s Offspring

(The following comprises Part Fifteen of the Saturday series on Secondary Illuminations of Scripture.) The story of Job has encouraged me in the face of losses, traumas, and trials.  For the purposes of this series, the book of Job is a useful stopping point for considering how numbers and names may hold secondary illumination significance. I imagine most of us …

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Secondary Illuminations in Psalm 68:15-16

(The following comprises Part Fourteen of the Saturday series on Secondary Illuminations of Scripture.) Last week we briefly considered Psalm 68:11-13.  Psalm 68 is rich in allusions, and those verses hold particular encouragements for women.  Now we’ll look at vv. 15-16 in a manner that builds on the encouragements of vv. 11-13.  You may decide if I am over-reaching in …

Secondary Illuminations in Psalm 68:11-13

(The following comprises Part Thirteen of the Saturday series on Secondary Illuminations of Scripture. Deborah asked that readers consult the the NASB rather than the ESV for this one; it seems the ESV is favoring the LXX over the MT for this Psalm) I’ve talked much about negative examples of secondary illuminations without providing substantive ostensibly positive examples.  I can’t let …

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A Final “How” before Some “What’s”

(The following comprises Part Twelve of the Saturday series on Secondary Illuminations of Scripture.) I believe that only when our handling of the Living Word grants it both the space to breathe and an environment in which it can retain its shape, will our stewardship be healthy and maximize its power to multiply in sustenance.  So I have grown unashamed …

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The Dangers of “Enthusiasm”—Example Three

(The following comprises Part Eleven of the Saturday series on Secondary Illuminations of Scripture.) My final negative example comes from a young friend who is developing a corrective prophetic voice.  He was thrilled to happen upon Job 32:7-10: “I thought, ‘Age should speak; advanced years should teach wisdom.’  But it is the spirit in a man, the breath of the …

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The Dangers of “Enthusiasm”—Example Two

(The following comprises Part Ten in the Saturday series on Secondary Illuminations in Scripture.) This error is a radical misinterpretation of the book of Hosea. In a secondary illumination mistake that probably builds on some of the same attitudes as the one described in Part Nine, I’ve known several women who have married men whom they knew were immature and …

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The Dangers of “Enthusiasm”—Example One

(The following comprises Part Nine of the Saturday series on Secondary Illuminations of Scripture.) Over the next three blogs, I’ll give you three instances I’ve run across recently where our secondary illuminations of Scripture have gone awry. Sometimes secondary illuminations gone awry are not even acknowledged to be secondary but are treated as or believed to be the primary, literal …

Regarding Language and Location

(The following comprises Part Eight of the Saturday series on Secondary Illuminations of Scripture.) I do believe that God can be and was so exacting in choosing the original languages (insofar as they are available to us in the earliest critical manuscripts we possess) and locations as to consider names and places a potential conduit for secondary illuminations.  Otherwise, He …

The Dangers of “Enthusiasm”

(The following comprises Part seven of the Saturday series on Secondary Illuminations of Scripture.) I do not believe John Locke would be inclined toward the spiritual senses that Aquinas has described (see Part Four) whatsoever, but his discourse on Enthusiasm (Chapter XIX of An Essay Concerning Human Understanding) nonetheless contains some valuable checks that can be applied to our evaluation …

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The Reformation through Julicher

(The following comprises Part Six of the Saturday series on Secondary Illuminations of Scripture.) With the Reformation, changes in hermeneutical predilections were abreast: “Martin Luther (1483-1546) repudiated the fourfold sense of scripture and viewed the allegorizers as ‘clerical jugglers performing monkey tricks.’”  However, Luther was inconsistent in his personal application of this complaint “in that he tended to allegorize the …

Aquinas on Literal Sense and Spiritual Sense

(The following comprises Part Five of the Saturday series on Secondary Illuminations of Scripture.) Since Thomas Aquinas represents the apex of the scholastic Church age, it is interesting to poke around to see how he handled interpretation.  In his Summa Theologica, Aquinas examines the nature of Scripture and whether or not it is open to layers of meaning.  His concern …

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The Infamous Good Samaritan

(The following comprises Part Four of the Saturday series on Secondary Illuminations of Scripture.) “Infamous,” you say?  “I thought he was a role model.”  Well, yes.  But the way some have read his story has disappointed many critics.  The Good Samaritan parable, more than most, has been allegorized by the Church down through the ages in ways which are now …

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An Early Christian History of Hermeneutics, Part Two

(The following comprises Part Three of the Saturday series on Secondary Illuminations of Scripture by Deborah J. Shore) Last week we started discussing Alexandrian hermeneutics.  Why would Alexandrians follow Philo so far away from the core of the text as modern minds perceive it? One might imagine Alexandrians sought to emulate the apostle Paul and other writers of Scripture as …

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An Early Christian History of Hermeneutics, Part One

(The following comprises Part Two of the Saturday series on Secondary Illuminations of Scripture by Deborah J. Shore) In the early centuries of the Church two of the most influential theological centers were Alexandria and Antioch in present-day Egypt and Turkey respectively.  The way that theologians in these two cities approached scriptures was rather polarized.  While key doctrines developed or …

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Secondary Scriptural Illuminations

Chances are, if you have cable you’ve probably happened upon an eyebrow-raising sermon on Christian T.V.  A charismatic speaker was pulling particularly creative meanings out of a biblical text—meanings that you were pretty sure contradicted the contextual import of the passage, contradicted sound theology, or otherwise sounded too baseless and “out there.” Now let’s say you’re a preacher or a …