Scripture and Its Interpretation ch 9: Premodern Interpretation of the Bible

Alexandrian school
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Terms in this set (47)
ecumenical councils(1) The general councils (Nicaea, 325; Constantinople, 381; Ephesus, 431; Chalcedon, 451; Constantinople II, 553; Constantinople III, 680-681; Nicaea II, 787) attended by representatives of the entire undivided church; (2) also, for Roman Catholics, additional councils up to and including the Second Vatican Council (1962-1965).The EnlightenmentThe period of European intellectual history (also known as "The Age of Reason") in the late seventeenth and the eighteenth centuries, when human reason was cultivated and applied to traditional teachings, including religious claims, texts, and authoritative teaching.exegesisThe act of "leading out" of the text a meaning based on the careful literary, historical, and/or theological analysis and interpretation of a text; in contrast to eisegesis ("reading into"), though it is generally recognized that no interpretation is without bias.exegeteOne who analyzes or interprets the Bible.GemaraJewish rabbinic commentaries on the Mishnah produced after about 200 CE and included with the Mishnah in the two versions of the Talmud.genreLiterary type, form, or classification (e.g., historical narrative, collection of prophetic oracles, letter, apocalypse).glossAn interpretive comment, written between the lines or in the margins of biblical texts and sometimes, in the early medieval period, extracted and compiled into books.gnosticismA term referring to diverse religious movements of the second and third centuries that were generally dualist, stressed gaining special knowledge as the means to salvation, and often reread the Scriptures as esoteric documents.haggadahA Jewish method of detailed interpretation of biblical narratives, usually drawing a moral from the story.halakahA Jewish interpretive practice of deriving concrete regulations governing individual behavior and social practices from Scripture.hypostatic unionThe doctrine of the union of the divine and human natures in the one person of Jesus Christ, the second person/individual reality of the Trinity.iconsSacred images of Jesus, biblical figures and events, and saints that are especially significant in Orthodox liturgy and spirituality as "windows into heaven."literal senseThe usual or primary meaning of a text based on applying ordinary rules of language and on which all other interpretations are normally based.Masoretic TextThe standard edition of the Hebrew text of Israel's Scriptures (Tanak) that is used today, the result of the work of rabbinic scholars (the "Masoretes") in the sixth to ninth centuries CE.midrashFrom the Hebrew for "search, inquire"; a form of Jewish (especially rabbinic) interpretation of texts, of which there were two main types, halakah and haggadah.MishnahThe written compilation of oral proto-rabbinic teachings prepared near the end of the Tannaitic period, ca. 200 CE, and later included in the two versions of the Talmud.modernismA general term for the cultural and philosophical aftermath of the Enlightenment in Western culture, in which human reason, the pursuit of objectivity, and the notion of universal values were elevated above the values of the premodern era, including the role of faith.patristicFrom Latin pater, "father"; of or related to the writings of the church fathers, theological writers from the end of the first or early second century CE until about the middle of the eighth century CE.pesherAn ancient Jewish method of commenting on the contemporary age by means of a line-by-line exposition of Scripture.PeshittaFrom the Syriac word for "simple"; the authorized Bible of the Syrian Orthodox Church dating from the fourth or fifth century CE.premodern interpretationThe interpretive approach to Scripture of the pre-Enlightenment era that was governed by theological convictions (e.g., that God speaks through an essentially unified Scripture), the aim of which was to help Christians think and live more faithfully.rabbinicReferring to Jewish teachers (rabbis), especially the era of Jewish teachers following the destruction of the second temple in 70 CE ("rabbinic Judaism").regula fideiLatin for rule of faith.Renaissance"Rebirth"; a period that began in fourteenth-century Italy and spread to northwestern Europe, consisting of a humanistic revival of interest in classical (ancient Greek and Roman) art and literature.rhetoricThe art of persuasive speech.rule of faithA summary account of basic Christian teachings eventually represented in the Apostles' Creed (and similar texts) that serves as a standard of orthodoxy and a theological framework for scriptural interpretation.senses of ScriptureThe levels or aspects of meaning in a biblical text first posited by early Christian writers and incorporated into an interpretive approach called fourfold exegesis: (1) the historical (or literal) sense; (2) the tropological (or moral) sense; (3) the spiritual or allegorical (doctrinal) sense; and (4) the anagogical sense (referring to mysteries seen by theōria [spiritual vision], or to the afterlife).sola ScripturaThe Protestant Reformation principle of "Scripture alone" as the authority for Christian faith and practice.SyriacA language closely related to Aramaic used by a large group of ancient Christian churches in the East.TalmudThe compilation of the Jewish Mishnah and the Gemara, which appeared in two editions: the Palestinian (ca. 450 CE) and the Babylonian (ca. 550 CE).TannaimThe Jewish rabbinical scholars active before 200 CE.TargumAn Aramaic translation/interpretation of Scripture, dating from ca. 250 BCE to ca. 300 CE.theocracy"Rule by God": (1) the condition of divine rule; (2) a religiously based government.typeA symbolic precursor within a text.typological exegesisAn interpretive approach that views the text as a narrative in which ancient events and figures (the "type") are understood to foreshadow later or contemporary events and figures (the "antitype").VulgateThe Latin translation of the Bible prepared in the late fourth and early fifth centuries, most of which was the work of Jerome of Bethlehem (d. 420 CE), and which became the official Bible of the Roman Catholic Church.hermeneuticA general interpretive philosophy, theory, approach, or strategy.