Thursday, August 04, 2011

NT Use of the OT

I'm making a couple new PowerPoint slides on the NT's use of the OT.  Here's a draft:

1. The NT drew on the OT for its sense of the story in which the early Christians were located.

  • From Genesis, Paul takes Adam and Abraham.
  • Other elements of the common Jewish story (exodus, kingship of David, exile)

2. The NT drew much of the eschatological context of Jesus' and John the Baptist's ministry from Isaiah.

  • return from exile passages (Isaiah 40, 52-53, 61)

3. The NT read many Psalms and parts of Isaiah in relation to Jesus as Christ.

  • Parts of Jesus life and ministry (Matthew's pesher, Mark's passion)
4. Early Christian prophets may have heard instructions through pesher interpretations

  • e.g., Agabus and the famine, 1 Corinthians 14 

5. Paul's arguments over the inclusion of the Gentiles seemed to play out in Genesis.

  • debates over the interpretations of certain passages (e.g., his Sarah and Hagar allegory)

6. Arguments over the function of the Law (from circumcision to tabernacle)

7. Passages like Daniel 11 played in expectations of the future.

  • abomination that causes desolation
8. Some awareness of Apocrypha and Pseudepigrapha

  • Sirach, Wisdom, Enoch
Types of Interpretation

  • some (especially Matthew) is a kind of "pesher" interpretation, where a text from one context comes to have a hidden prophetic meaning relating to the time of the NT
  • some allegory
  • some transferred placement of words on to Jesus' lips
  • we can use the word typology as a descriptive term if we recognize that this was not a category in use at the time

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