In whatever way one judges the detailed exegesis of Origen and Ambrose, its deepest basis was neither Hellenistic allegory, nor Philo nor rabbinic methods
(338) Cf 1 Co 6:9-11; Ep 4:17-19. For ritual mutilations, cf. Lv 21:5; 1 K ; Is 15:2; Ho 7:14.
(340) In Greek, for “to them belong” there is a simple genitive twice, which expresses possession (literally: “of whom [are]”); for “from them comes” there is a genitive introduced by the preposition ex which expresses origin.
(348) Paul VI, homily of or adhibeatur spesque in iis collocetur”: (“that there be respect and love towards them and that hope is placed in them”).
Strictly speaking, – leaving aside the details of interpretation – its basis was the New Testament itself. Jesus of Nazareth claimed to be the true heir to the Old Testament – “the Scriptures” – and to offer a true interpretation, which, admittedly, was not that of the schools, but came from the authority of the Author himself: “He taught them as one having authority, and not as the scribes” (Mk 1:22). The Emmaus narrative also expresses this claim: “Beginning with Moses and all the prophets, he interpreted to them the things about himself in all the Scriptures” (Lk ). The New Testament authors sought to ground this claim into details, in particular Matthew, but Paul as well, by using rabbinic methods of interpretation to show that the scribal interpretation led to Christ as the key to the “Scriptures”. For the authors and founders of the New Testament, the Old Testament was simply “the Scriptures”: it was only later that the developing Church gradually formed a New Testament canon which was also Sacred Scripture, but in the sense that it still presupposed Israel’s Bible to be such, the Bible read by the apostles and their disciples, and now called the Old Testament, which provided the interpretative key.
In its work, the Biblical Commission could not ignore the contemporary context, where the shock of the Shoah has put the whole question under a new light. Two main problems are posed: Can Christians, after all that has happened, still claim in good conscience to be the legitimate heirs of Israel’s Bible? Have they the right to propose a Christian interpretation of this Bible, or should they not instead, respectfully and humbly, renounce any claim that, in the light of what has happened, must look like a usurpation? The second question follows from the first: In its presentation of the Jews and the Jewish people, has not the New Testament itself contributed to creating a hostility towards the Jewish people that provided a support for the ideology of those who wished to destroy Israel? The Commission set about addressing those two questions. It is clear that a Christian rejection of the Old Testament would not only put an end to Christianity itself as indicated above, but, in addition, would prevent the fostering of positive relations between Christians and Jews, precisely because they would lack common ground. In the light of what has happened, what ought to emerge now is a new respect for the Jewish interpretation of the Old Testament. On this subject, the Document says two things. First it declares that “the Jewish reading of the Bible is a possible one, in continuity with the Jewish Scriptures of the Second Temple period, a reading analogous to the Christian reading, which developed in parallel fashion” (no. 22). It adds that Christians can learn a great deal from a Jewish exegesis practised for more than 2000 years; in return, Christians may hope that Jews can profit from Christian exegetical research (ibid.). I think this analysis will prove useful for the pursuit of Judeo-Christian dialogue, as well as for the interior formation of Christian consciousness.
In this way the Biblical Commission hopes to advance the dialogue between Christians and Jews with clarity and in a spirit of mutual esteem and affection.
4. This recognition of authority takes different forms depending on the case. Frequently, in a revelatory context the simple verb legei, “it says”, is found, without any expressed subject, 8 as in later rabbinic www.hookupdate.net/escort-index/wichita-falls/ writings, but the context shows that a subject conferring great authority on the text is to be understood: Scripture, the Lord or Christ. 9 At other times the subject is expressed: it is “Scripture”, “the Law”, or “Moses” or “David”, with the added note that he was inspired, “the Holy Spirit” or “the prophet”, frequently “Isaiah”, sometimes “Jeremiah”, but it is also “the Holy Spirit” or “the Lord” as the prophets used to say. 10 Twice, Matthew has a complex formula indicating both the divine speaker and the human spokesperson: “what had been spoken by the Lord through the prophet. ” (Mt 1:22; 2:15). At other times the mention of the Lord remains implicit, suggested only by the preposition dia “through”, referring to the human spokesperson. In these texts of Matthew, the verb “to say” in the present tense results in presenting the quotations from the Jewish Bible as living words possessing perennial authority.
Because what is written in the Old Testament “must” be fulfilled, the events take place “so that” it is fulfilled. This is what Matthew often expresses in the infancy narrative, later on in Jesus’ public life 16 and for the whole passion (Mt ). Mark has a parallel to the last mentioned passage in a powerfully elliptic phrase: “But let the Scriptures be fulfilled” (Mk ). Luke does not use this expression but John has recourse to it almost as often as Matthew does. 17 The Gospels’ insistence on the purpose of these events “so that the Scriptures be fulfilled” 18 attributes the utmost importance to the Jewish Scriptures. It is clearly understood that these events would be meaningless if they did not correspond to what the Scriptures say. It would not be a question there of the realisation of God’s plan.
Copyright 2002 – Libreria Editrice Vaticana
The basic affirmation remains the same. The writings of the New Testament acknowledge that the Jewish Scriptures have a permanent value as divine revelation. They have a positive outlook towards them and regard them as the foundation on which they themselves rest. Consequently, the Church has always held that the Jewish Scriptures form an integral part of the Christian Bible.
This hermeneutical perspective was not taken over by the Christian communities, with the exception, perhaps, of those in Judeo-Christian milieux linked to Pharisaic Judaism by their veneration of the Law. In the New Testament, the general tendency is to give more importance to the prophetic texts, understood as foretelling the mystery of Christ. The apostle Paul and the Letter to the Hebrews do not hesitate to enter into polemics against the Law. Besides, early Christianity shared apocalyptic currents with the Zealots and with the Essenes apocalyptic messianic expectation; from Hellenistic Judaism it adopted a more extended, sapientially oriented body of Scripture capable of fostering intercultural relations.