Biblical Interpretation in Ancient Israel

By Michael Fishbane | Go to book overview

Introduction

One of the most remarkable features of the great world religions is the emergence to independent dignity of traditions and commentaries which supplement the original authoritative teachings—be these latter the product of divine revelation or human wisdom. This phenomenon is not restricted to religious literature, of course, as the commentaries and super-commentaries to Aristotle in the Middle Ages, or to Freud in modernity, fully attest. But it is in the classical expressions of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam on the one hand, and Hinduism, Buddhism, and Confucianism on the other, that interpretation has become a cultural form of the first magnitude—transforming the foundational revelations of the first group and the metaphysical insights of the second, and determining the fateful historical paths of both. Indeed, far from simply being the fundamental mode whereby divine revelations and philosophical truths maintain their ongoing cultural value, human interpretation is also constitutive of what has been even more fateful and fundamental for our religious-cultural heritage: what Thomas Mann characterized, in another regard, as 'zitathaftes Leben'. 1 By 'zitathaftes Leben' I mean the dependence of the great religious-cultural formations on authoritative views which are studied, reinterpreted, and adapted to ongoing life. So much, it seems, is derivation—as opposed to radical innovation—a central ingredient of the human religious condition, that Gautama Buddha set his whole revolution of consciousness deliberately against it, only to have his followers turn him into a transcendent source of wisdom and his works into the subject-matter of exegesis. 2 Moreover, the exegetical orientation is also basic to the internal transformations of the historical religions. Significantly, the Teacher of Righteousness at Qumran, and Jesus, and Paul, and all the religious reformers that come to mind, presented themselves as the authentic interpreters of the religions which they represented.

Among the historical religions, none so much prizes 'zitathaftes Leben' as does Judaism, which casts the scholar and disciple of the wise

-1-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Biblical Interpretation in Ancient Israel
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
/ 617

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

    Already a member? Log in now.