Wednesday, July 10, 2019

Dig



Christ is “hidden like a treasure in the Law and the Prophets.” The metaphors of digging up a field or searching for a hidden treasure make clear that interpretation is and should be ­effortful. 

Reading the Bible is hard work, not primarily because we lack technical exegetical skills, but because we lack spiritual discernment. When we treat the text as an object to be mastered, we place ourselves at a distance from it and lack the spiritual spade we need to dig up Christ... Jesus reprimands the ­experts in the law because the very Scriptures they search “bear witness about me” (John 5:39). The experts know the Scriptures, but their eyes are closed to their deepest meaning. 

When Jesus appears... on the way to Emmaus, he enlightens them by citing the Scriptures: “Beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he interpreted to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning himself” (Luke 24:27). It isn’t until Jesus breaks the bread that the two travelers’ eyes are opened. 

Technical skills naturally enter into the process of interpretation. But more often our obstacles to proper reading are...problems of spiritual vision.

                                                                              -Hans Boersma, Fear of the Word
                                                                                 in First Things, Aug 2019

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