David Being a Prophet: The Contingency of Scripture upon History in the New Testament 3110358891, 9783110358896

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David Being a Prophet: The Contingency of Scripture upon History in the New Testament
 3110358891, 9783110358896

Table of contents :
Contents
Abbreviations
Introduction
Chapter 1: Historical Exegesis in the Epistle to the Hebrews
1.1 The use of Scriptural texts in Hebrews
1.1.1 Hermeneutics in Hebrews 3:1–4:13
1.1.2 Hebrews 3:1–6: Introduction
1.1.3 Hebrews 3:7–11: Primary Lemma
1.1.4 Hebrews 3:12–13: First Paraenesis
1.1.5 Hebrews 3:14–19: Argument from historic referent
1.1.6 Hebrews 4:1–2: Second Paraenesis
1.1.7 Hebrews 4:3–5: Argument from gezerah shewah
1.1.8 Hebrews 4:6–10: Argument from Davidic authorship
1.1.9 Hebrews 4:11–13: Third Paraenesis
1.2 Hermeneutics in Hebrews 7:1–28
1.2.1 Hebrews 7:1–3: Etymological argument
1.2.2 Hebrews 7:4–10: Argument from an historic referent.
1.2.3 Hebrews 7:11–19: Ps 110:4 effects a change in the priesthood
1.2.4 Heb 7:26–28: Summary of the Christological implications of Ps 110:4.
1.3 Hebrews’ distinctive use of history.
1.3.1 Philo
1.3.2 Qumran
1.3.3 Rabbinic literature
1.4 History in Hebrews
Conclusion
Chapter 2: Historical Exegesis in the Acts of the Apostles
2.1 Issues relating to the study of the speeches in Acts
2.2 Exegetical practice in Luke-Acts
2.3 The hermeneutics of Acts 2:14–41
2.3.1 Acts 2:14–21: Joel 2:28–32 explains the situation in which it is quoted.
2.3.2 Acts 2:22–35: History and Scripture confirm Jesus as the Risen Christ
2.3.3 Acts 2:36 & 38–39: Paraenetic
2.4 The Hermeneutics of Acts 13:26–41
2.4.1 Acts 13:16–22: The history of Israel to David
2.4.2 Acts 13:23–33: The promise of the Christ and its fulfilment
2.4.3 Acts 13:33–37: The fulfilment of Scripture is proven by Scripture
2.4.4 Acts 13:38–41: Paraenetic
2.5 Suggested exegetical backgrounds
2.5.1 Qumranic Literature
2.5.2 Rabbinic Literature
2.5.3 Josephus
2.6 History in Luke-Acts
Conclusion
Chapter 3: Historical Exegesis in the Davidssohnfrage: Matthew 22:41–46, Mark 12:35–37 and Luke 20:41–44.
3.1 Historical Hermeneutics in the Davidssohnfrage: Mk 12:35–37 and Parallels
3.1.1 Jesus’ Interpretation of Scripture in the Synoptic Gospels
3.1.2 Mk 12:35–37 and its Parallels
3.1.3 The Exegetical Argument
3.1.4 The Ambiguity of the Davidssohnfrage
3.2 Historical Hermeneutics and the Historical Jesus
Conclusion: The Davidssohnfrage and the treatment of Ps 16 in Acts
Chapter 4: The Historical Hermeneutics of the New Testament and the Current Crisis facing the Historical-Critical Method in Theology
4.1 The challenge to historical hermeneutics
4.1.1 The nature and origins of historical criticism
4.1.2 Determinacy, the intentionalist fallacy and the historical-critical method
4.1.3 Theological hermeneutics and the Theological Interpretation of Scripture school
4.2 Historical and theological hermeneutics: a recommendation
4.2.1 Historical study is not alien to theology
4.2.2 Historical study encourages theological narrative
4.2.3 Historical study encourages alterity and theological rigour
4.3 Excursus: A theological approach to historical hermeneutics in practice
Conclusion
Bibliography
Index
Keyword Index

Citation preview

Benjamin Sargent David Being a Prophet

Beihefte zur Zeitschrift für die neutestamentliche Wissenschaft

Herausgegeben von Carl R. Holladay, Matthias Konradt, Hermann Lichtenberger, Jens Schröter und Gregory E. Sterling

Band 207

Benjamin Sargent

David Being a Prophet The Contingency of Scripture upon History in the New Testament

DE GRUYTER

ISBN 978-3-11-035889-6 e-ISBN 978-3-11-036200-8 ISSN 0171-6441 Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data A CIP catalog record for this book has been applied for at the Library of Congress. Bibliographic Information published by the Deutsche Nationalbibliothek The Deutsche Nationalbibliothek lists this publication in the Deutsche Nationalbibliografie; detailed bibliographic data are available in the Internet at http://dnb.dnb.de. © 2014 Walter de Gruyter GmbH, Berlin/Boston Printing: CPI buch bücher.de GmbH, Birkach ♾ Printed on acid-free paper Printed in Germany www.degruyter.com

Contents Abbreviations Introduction

IX 1

Chapter 1: Historical Exegesis in the Epistle to the Hebrews 6 7 . The use of Scriptural texts in Hebrews .. Hermeneutics in Hebrews 3:1 – 4:13 8 8 .. Hebrews 3:1 – 6: Introduction .. Hebrews 3:7 – 11: Primary Lemma 9 11 .. Hebrews 3:12 – 13: First Paraenesis 11 .. Hebrews 3:14 – 19: Argument from historic referent .. Hebrews 4:1 – 2: Second Paraenesis 12 13 .. Hebrews 4:3 – 5: Argument from gezerah shewah 14 .. Hebrews 4:6 – 10: Argument from Davidic authorship 17 .. Hebrews 4:11 – 13: Third Paraenesis 17 . Hermeneutics in Hebrews 7:1 – 28 .. Hebrews 7:1 – 3: Etymological argument 17 21 .. Hebrews 7:4 – 10: Argument from an historic referent. .. Hebrews 7:11 – 19: Ps 110:4 effects a change in the priesthood 22 .. Heb 7:26 – 28: Summary of the Christological implications of Ps 110:4. 32 32 . Hebrews’ distinctive use of history. .. Philo 33 35 .. Qumran .. Rabbinic literature 37 39 . History in Hebrews Conclusion 43 Chapter 2: Historical Exegesis in the Acts of the Apostles 45 45 . Issues relating to the study of the speeches in Acts 48 . Exegetical practice in Luke-Acts . The hermeneutics of Acts 2:14 – 41 53 .. Acts 2:14 – 21: Joel 2:28 – 32 explains the situation in which it is 57 quoted. .. Acts 2:22 – 35: History and Scripture confirm Jesus as the Risen 58 Christ .. Acts 2:36 & 38 – 39: Paraenetic 67

VI

. .. .. ..

Contents

The Hermeneutics of Acts 13:26 – 41 68 68 Acts 13:16 – 22: The history of Israel to David Acts 13:23 – 33: The promise of the Christ and its fulfilment Acts 13:33 – 37: The fulfilment of Scripture is proven by 72 Scripture .. Acts 13:38 – 41: Paraenetic 75 76 . Suggested exegetical backgrounds 76 .. Qumranic Literature 79 .. Rabbinic Literature 83 .. Josephus 84 . History in Luke-Acts 90 Conclusion

70

Chapter 3: Historical Exegesis in the Davidssohnfrage: Matthew 22:41 – 46, 92 Mark 12:35 – 37 and Luke 20:41 – 44. . Historical Hermeneutics in the Davidssohnfrage: Mk 12:35 – 37 and Parallels 92 .. Jesus’ Interpretation of Scripture in the Synoptic Gospels 93 97 .. Mk 12:35 – 37 and its Parallels 100 .. The Exegetical Argument .. The Ambiguity of the Davidssohnfrage 104 112 . Historical Hermeneutics and the Historical Jesus Conclusion: The Davidssohnfrage and the treatment of Ps 16 in Acts 126 Chapter 4: The Historical Hermeneutics of the New Testament and the Current Crisis facing the Historical-Critical Method in Theology 129 132 . The challenge to historical hermeneutics 132 .. The nature and origins of historical criticism .. Determinacy, the intentionalist fallacy and the historical-critical method 140 .. Theological hermeneutics and the Theological Interpretation 149 of Scripture school . Historical and theological hermeneutics: a 162 recommendation 163 .. Historical study is not alien to theology 166 .. Historical study encourages theological narrative .. Historical study encourages alterity and theological rigour 172 . Excursus: A theological approach to historical hermeneutics in 180 practice Conclusion 184

Contents

Bibliography Index

191

209

Keyword Index

214

VII

Abbreviations ABC AJP AJS Review BBR BibInt Bib. BibTo BIS BSac. BSOAS BTB BZNW CBQ CBQMS CI CJ CJT Conc. CP CTJ DSD EJ EKK EQur ErIsr EvQ ExpTim FRLANT GOTR HeyJ HTR HUCA ICC IJST Int. IQ IS JAAR JBL JETS JJS JLT JOAS JQR

Anchor Bible Commentary American Journal of Philology Association of Jewish Studies Review Bulletin for Biblical Research Biblical Interpretation Biblica Bible Today Biblical Interpretation Series Bibliotheca Sacra Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies Biblical Theology Bulletin Beihefte zur Zeitschrift für die Neutestamentliche Wissenschaft Catholic Biblical Quarterly Catholic Biblical Quarterly Monograph Series Critical Inquiry Concordia Journal Canadian Journal of Theology Concilium Classical Philology Calvin Theological Journal Dead Sea Discoveries Encyclopaedia Judaica Evangelisch-Katholischer Kommentar zum Neuen Testament Encyclopedia of the Qur’ān ‫ארץ־ישראל‬ Evangelical Quarterly Expository Times Forschungen zur Religion und Literatur des Alten und Neuen Testaments Greek Orthodox Theological Review Heythrop Journal Harvard Theological Review Hebrew Union College Annual International Critical Commentary International Journal of Systematic Theology Interpretation Islamic Quarterly Islamic Studies Journal of the American Academy of Religion Journal of Biblical Literature Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society Journal of Jewish Studies Journal of Literature and Theology Journal of the American Oriental Society Jewish Quarterly Review

X

Abbreviations

JR JRE JSHJ JSJPHR JSNT JSNTSup JSOTSup JSS MT Neot. NIGTC NovT NovTSup NTD NTS PIBA ProEcc PT RevQ RQ SBLMS SBLSP Sem. SJSJ SJT SNTSMS SPA ST STDJ Th.Stud. TPAPA TynB VT WBC WTJ WUNT ZAW ZNW

Journal of Religion Journal of Religious Ethics Journal for the Study of the Historical Jesus Journal for the Study of Judaism in the Persian, Hellenistic and Roman Periods Journal for the Study of the New Testament Supplements to the Journal for the Study of the New Testament Supplements to the Journal for the Study of the Old Testament Journal of Semitic Studies Modern Theology Neotestamentica New International Greek Testament Commentary Novum Testamentum Supplements to Novum Testamentum Das Neue Testament Deutsch New Testament Studies Proceedings of the Irish Biblical Association Pro Ecclesia Philosophy and Theology Revue de Qumran Restoration Quarterly Society of Biblical Literature Seminar Papers Society of Biblical Literature Seminar Papers Semeia Supplements to the Journal for the Study of Judaism Scottish Journal of Theology Society of New Testament Studies Monograph Series Studia Philonica Annual Studia Theologica Studies in the Texts of the Deserts of Judah Theological Studies Transactions and Proceedings of the American Philological Association Tyndale Bulletin Vetus Testamentum Word Biblical Commentary Westminster Theological Journal Wissenschaftliche Untersuchungen zum Neuen Testament Zeitschrift für die Alttestamentliche Wissenschaft Zeitschrift für die Neutestamentliche Wissenschaft

Greek Literature 1 Clem. Apoc. Peter Ign. Eph. Ign. Magn.

The First Epistle of Clement to the Corinthians. Apocalypse of Peter The Epistle of Ignatius to the Ephesians. The Epistle of Ignatius to the Magnesians.

Semitic Literature

NA Philo: Abrah. Cher. Hypoth. Leg. All. Vit. Cont. Vit. Mos. Plant. Sib. Or. Trypho. War.

Nestle-Aland, Novum Testamentum Graece, 27th Ed. De Abrahamo De Cherubim Hypothetica Legum allegoria De vita contemplative De vita Mosis De plantatione Sibylline Oracles Justin Martyr’s Dialogue with Trypho the Jew Josephus’ Jewish War

Semitic Literature Aboth d. R. Nathan Aboth of Rabbi Nathan from the Minor Tractates of b. Tal b. B Bat. Tractate Baba Batra of the Babylonian Talmud b. Ber. Tractate Berakoth of the Babylonian Talmud. BHS Biblica Hebraica Studgartensia. b. Naz. Tractate Nazir of the Babylonian Talmud. b. Ned. Tractate Nedarim of the Babylonian Talmud. b. Pes. Tractate Pesahim of the Babylonian Talmud. b. Sanh. Tractate Sanhedrin of the Babylonian Talmud. b. Tam. Tractate Tamid of the Babylonian Talmud. b. Yeb. Tractate Yebamoth of the Babylonian Talmud. Gen. Rab. Genesis Rabbah. MT Massoretic Text Odes Sol. Odes of Solomon Qumran: 1QapGen Genesis Apocryphon from cave 1. 1QpHab Pesher on Habakkuk from cave 1. 1QS Rule of the Community from cave 1. 4QFlor Florilegium from cave 4. Pesher on Isaiah from cave 4, fragment b. 4QpIsab 4QpNah Pesher on Nahum from cave 4. Pesher on Psalms from cave 4. 4QpPsa 4Q161 Fragment 161 from cave 4. 4Q163 Fragment 163 from cave 4. 4Q164 Fragment 164 from cave 4. 4Q168 Fragment 168 from cave 4. War Scroll from cave 4. 4QMa 11QMelch Melchizedek scroll from cave 11. 11QT Temple Scroll from cave 11. CD Damascus Document Sifre. Num. Sifre on Numbers

XI

XII

1 Enoch Test Moses Tg Neof. Tg. Onq. Tg. Ps. Tg. Ps.-J Tosf. Sanh.

Abbreviations

Similitudes of 1 Enoch Testament of Moses Targum Neofiti Targum Onqelos Targum Psalms Targum Pseudo-Jonathan Tosefta tractate Sanhedrin

The abbreviation of the names of biblical books follows the standard practice of the New Revised Standard Version.

Introduction In appropriate cases the interpreter is free to seek out what sound elements there are in “the Method of Form-history,” and these he can duly make use of to gain a fuller understanding of the Gospels. He must be circumspect in doing so, however, because the method in question is often found alloyed with principles of a philosophical or theological nature which are quite inadmissible, and which not infrequently vitiate both the method itself and the conclusions arrived at regarding literary questions. For certain exponents of this method, led astray by rationalistic prejudices, refuse to admit that there exists a supernatural order, or that a personal God intervenes in the world by revelation properly so called, or that miracles and prophecies are possible and have actually occurred. There are others who have as their starting-point a wrong notion of faith, taking it that faith is indifferent to historical truth, and is incompatible with it. Others practically deny a priori the historical value and character of the documents of revelation…All these aberrations are not only opposed to Catholic doctrine, but are also devoid of any scientific foundation, and are foreign to the genuine principles of the historical method.¹

This charge, given to Roman Catholic biblical scholars in 1964 by the Pontifical Biblical Institute, points prematurely to what has perhaps become something of a crisis in Biblical Studies. ² This crisis concerns the appropriate role of historical study in biblical hermeneutics: the extent to which exegetes should attempt to understand biblical texts within the historical and authorial contexts from which those texts originated. On one hand, the Pontifical charge regards certain approaches to the historical study of Scripture as problematic, since they depend upon philosophical assumptions about the world, its history and the human consciousness performing biblical study: assumptions that do not agree with Christian doctrine and its traditional accounts of the human intellect and divine

 Benjamin N. Wambacq, ‘Instructio de Historica Evangeliorum Veritate,’ CBQ 26 (1964), pp. 306 – 307. cf. p. 300 ‘Ubi casus fert, interpreti investigare licet, quae sana elementa in “methodo historiae formarum” insint, quibus ad pleniorem Evangeliorum intellegentiam rite uti possit. Circumspecte tamen se gerat, quia saepe huic methodo commixta prostant principia philosophica et theologica haud probanda, quae tum methodum, tum conclusions in re litteraria non raro depravant. Quidam enim huius method fautores praeiudicatis opinionibus rationalismi abducti, supernaturalis ordinis existentiam et Dei personalis in mundo interventum, ope revelationis proprie dictae factum, miraculorum et prophetiarum possibiltatem et existentiam agnoscere renuunt. Alii e falsa notione fidei procedunt ac si ipsa veritatem historicam non curet, immo cum eadem componi non possit. Alii historicam vim et indolem documentorum revelationis quasi a priori negant…Quae omnia non tantum catholicae doctrinae adversantur, sed etiam fundamento scientifico carent, a rectisque historicae methodi principiis aliena sunt.’  A recent essay which highlights this crisis is George Aichele, Peter Marshall and Richard Walsh, ‘An Elephant in the Room: Historical-Critical and Postmodern Interpretations of the Bible,’ JBL 128:2 (2009), pp. 383 – 404.

2

Introduction

revelation. On the other hand, it asserts that certain exegetes proceed as though there is no historical character to Scripture at all and who assume that historical study of Scripture and its ancient contexts is unnecessary. This raises important questions: how should the role of historical study in biblical hermeneutics be understood? ³ Is there a place in Christian theology for hermeneutics which presuppose the historical contingency of biblical texts, or are such methods opposed to the task of Christian Theology? It is often suggested, as will be seen below, that the earliest Christians, in particular the writers of the New Testament, had no interest in interpreting Scripture with reference to the historical setting in which a particular piece of Scripture was composed. For example, Paul often simply introduces scriptural texts with variants of the formula καθὼς γέγραπται without seeking to situate them in any kind of context other than his own. ⁴ But is this view universally applicable to the New Testament? Is there some sense in which New Testament authors have some consciousness of the historical character of Scripture, even if quite different to that of modernity? Before exploring questions relating to the appropriate place of ‘historical hermeneutics’ (those hermeneutical approaches which attempt to understand a biblical text by locating it in the assumed historical setting from which it emerged, either in composition or redaction) ⁵ this study will seek to demonstrate that in a small number of New Testament texts the assumed historical origins of scriptural citations are of some importance to an author’s hermeneutic. In other words, in a small number of cases in the New Testament, scriptural texts are interpreted as contingent upon their assumed author or his time of writing. The study will then proceed to explore the extent to which such hermeneu-

 This study understands history to be the narratival succession of things, people and events of the past. History is both an external narrative which can be viewed as something other than the task of self-understanding in the present (cf. G.W.F. Hegel, ‘Introduction to he Philosophy of History,’ in Hegel: Selections (ed. J. Loewenberg; New York: Scribner, 1957), pp. 338 – 442) and yet is also fundamentally dependent upon the subjectivity of the person thinking history in his or her own present, from which history cannot be entirely abstracted (cf. Jean-Paul Sartre, Being and Nothingness: An Essay in Phenomenological Ontology (trans. Hazel E. Barnes; London: Routledge, 2003), pp. 131– 143). History can never be absolute, viewed with neutrality. This needs to be recognised if one is to use the term of both theological and non-theological accounts of the past. At the same time, history must also possess a degree of alterity if it is to be the subject of meaningful study as a thing in itself.  E.g. Rom 1:17, 2:24, 3:4, 10, 4:17, 8:36, 9:13, 33, 10:15, 11:8, 26 etc.  This study does not use ‘historical hermeneutics’ to refer to methods sensitive to reception history, merely those that seek to articulate the intended meaning of a biblical text by locating it within its earliest historical context.

Introduction

3

tics in the New Testament are dependent upon other exegetical traditions in antiquity, arguing that, for the most part, historical hermeneutics in the New Testament represent an innovation dependent upon early Christian notions of Heilsgeschichte. From this perspective, the value of historical study in contemporary biblical hermeneutics will be explored. It must be stressed that the exegetical use of history in the New Testament is not perceived here as an embryonic form of historical criticism. The two approaches are quite distinct. As will be noted in chapter four, the ‘critical’ element is completely lacking in New Testament passages which assume the historical contingency of Scripture. As noted above, New Testament examples of interpretation which assume historical contingency are often clearly dependent upon a theological account of history, rather than an apparently scientific account of history. The basis for discussing New Testament texts in relation to the role of historical study (and therefore, by implication, the historical-critical method) in contemporary academic study of Scripture is the shared assumption that a text is essentially contingent upon its author and the time in which it was written or redacted: that the text can be explained with reference to its assumed history. It will be argued that the assumption of historical contingency cannot be dismissed by contemporary scholars as not properly Christian, as simply a product of Enlightenment hostility to traditional Christian ideas of divine revelation. The reading of Scripture as historically contingent may be regarded as properly Christian (perhaps even distinctively Christian) since in the New Testament it marks a departure from the exegetical norms of early Semitic and Hellenistic-Jewish reading of Scripture. As a whole, the study will seek to answer the following research questions: Do New Testament writers understand scriptural texts to be contingent products of particular authors or historical situations? How is this assumption of historical contingency reflected in the exegetical techniques employed? To what extent are such exegetical methods unique to the New Testament or dependent upon contemporary exegetical literature? How might such New Testament ‘historical’ exegesis inform contemporary discussion about the nature and value of historical methods both in biblical studies and systematic theology? The study consists of five chapters. Chapter one explores the possible New Testament examples of historical exegesis in the Epistle to the Hebrews by examining the interpretation of Scripture in Heb 4:6 – 11 and 7:11– 19. It will be argued that, in a change from the dominant Christological hermeneutic of Hebrews, the author employs his understanding of the historical situation of a text to explicate both Ps 95:7– 11 and Ps 110:4. It will be suggested that these two explications are quite different, one employing an historical understanding of the situation of a text’s author (assumed to be David), the other reflecting on the historical situation of Ps 110:4 as a means

4

Introduction

of claiming the text and its notion of Melchizedek priesthood as a replacement of earlier Scripture establishing the Levitical priesthood. The issue of whether such hermeneutics are indebted to existing schools of exegesis is explored through an analysis of the position of history in the groups of exegetical literature most often thought to have influenced Hebrews: Philo, Qumran and Rabbinic literature. Whilst both of these arguments are indebted to some extent to the exegetical techniques of other ancient writers (for example, the use of gezerah shewah in Heb 4:3 – 5 and, in the case of Heb 7:1– 3, Philo’s etymological treatment of Melchizedek), their use of history differs significantly. This, it is suggested, is due to Hebrews’ Heilsgeschichte: its distinctive understanding of history as an authentic and teleological realm of God’s activity which enables the historical situation of scriptural texts to be perceived quite differently. The second chapter is similar to chapter one as it examines the use of historical hermeneutics in the speeches of Acts, paying particular attention to the treatment of Pss 16:8 – 11 and 110:1 in Acts 2:25 – 36 as well as the treatment of Ps 16:10 in Acts 13:33 – 37. Here, a theory about the identity of the psalm’s author and the location of the author in history are employed to proclaim a messianic referent for the text. This is somewhat different to the similar argument in Hebrews, since in Acts (certainly in 2:30) the focus of the argument is primarily the identity or function of the author or speaker of the text. It is because David is understood to be a prophet that his utterance in Ps 16:8 – 11 is read as a reference to the future. However, when compared with the literature most often thought to have influenced the scriptural hermeneutics of Acts, principally the Dead Sea Scrolls, Josephus and Rabbinic literature, this exegetical use of the historical author appears to be distinctive. It will be argued that the uniqueness of the historical argument employed in Acts is possible due to the understanding of history as prophecy and fulfilment that dominates Luke-Acts. However, since two of the ‘historical’ arguments of Acts relate to a specific scriptural text, Ps 16, and since this argument itself is distinctive even in Luke-Acts, it is possible that the argument is derived from a testimonium featuring Ps 16, a testimonium preexisting Luke-Acts. This suggests that the argument originated in the earliest years of the Church. Chapter three addresses the possibility of early material employing the historical-type exegetical argument by examining the Davidssohnfrage in the Synoptic Gospels: Matt 22:41– 46, Mk 12:35 – 37 and Lk 20:41– 44. It is argued that these texts employ the presumed historical Davidic setting of Ps 110 to explain who the Messiah is. This argument appears to be very similar to that of Acts 2:25 – 36, where the identity of the assumed author of the scriptural text is employed to provide the appropriate interpretation. Whilst the literature on the historicity of the Davidssohnfrage as reflecting the teaching of Jesus of Nazareth is inconclu-

Introduction

5

sive, there are good reasons to regard the pericope as originating, in some form, with Jesus’ teaching. If this is the case, the Davidssohnfrage probably represents the earliest text in Jewish and Hellenistic Jewish literature which demonstrates an interest in text’s contingency upon the circumstances from which it originated and which seeks to explain that text with reference to those circumstances. Having established the existence in the New Testament of hermeneutics which view meaning as contingent upon the historical process through which a certain text came to be, the final chapter argues that biblical hermeneutics must continue to interpret the Bible with just such a view of biblical texts. It is noted that historical criticism, which operates on a similar (but not identical) set of assumptions about a text’s relation to history, is now widely regarded as philosophically and theologically suspect. One particular group of scholars (perhaps representative of a broader mood within biblical studies and systematic theology) who have rejected historical criticism are those associated with the diverse movement of Theological Interpretation of Scripture. Representatives of this movement aim to read biblical texts in a self-consiously theological manner, employing exegetical approaches which are often characterised as pre-critical. However, with the rejection of historical criticism, texts are rarely read within Theological Interpretation of Scripture as contingent upon an historical author or set of circumstances. It is argued that the rejection of this contingency as a characteristic of an anti-theological Enlightenment or Romantic view of causality is unwarranted, since the New Testament provides pre-modern examples of this assumption of contingency which are dependent upon theological accounts of the world and its history. It is argued that biblical scholarship has much to gain from the maintainance of a view of texts as historically contingent, whilst it may be appropriate to reconsider historical criticism itself. The chapter concludes with an excursus exploring how a certain text might be interpreted on the basis of its historical contingency, having taken note of significant problems relating to historical criticism.

Chapter 1: Historical Exegesis in the Epistle to the Hebrews The Epistle to the Hebrews is of immense importance to any study of the biblical hermeneutics of the writers of New Testament documents, since it contains some of the longest and most detailed discussions of specific scriptural texts in the New Testament. This chapter comments on two such discussions: Heb 3:1– 4:13 and 7:1– 28. In each of these, the author of Hebrews is keen to demonstrate the exegetical reasoning that results in a given interpretation of a scriptural text. This desire to make the act of interpretation overt is of great benefit to those seeking a better understanding of biblical exegesis in the earliest Christian communities. It is for this reason that these two passages have been selected for study. This chapter will examine Heb 3:1– 4:13 and 7:1– 28 in turn. It will be noted that an argument from the supposed historic setting of Psalm 95:7– 11⁶ is used by the author of Hebrews to clarify the true referent of κατάπαυσις in Heb 3:1– 4:13. The discussion of Ps 110:4 in Heb 7:1– 28 will then be considered. Here, the author of Hebrews locates Ps 110:4 in an historic setting in order to understand how it relates to the ‘law’ establishing the Levitical priesthood. The priesthood of Melchizedek is seen by the author to replace the Levitical priesthood since the text in which it is introduced belongs to a point in history later than the law. It will then be argued that such ‘historical’ hermeneutics stand out as distinctive amongst the range of exegetical literature that is often suggested as supplying the hermeneutical background to the Epistle. Because of this, it will be argued that Hebrews demonstrates a distinctively Christian theological hermeneutic in its treatments of Pss 95:7– 11 and 110:4. It will be suggested that such ‘uniqueness’ is made possible by the author’s understanding of salvation history that creates a normative sense of theological time linking the psalmist and the author of Hebrews, a normativity which allows the psalm to have its ‘true’ theological meaning as the historic meaning intended by the psalmist.

 Or Psalm 94 in Old Greek texts. This study will follow recent practice in avoiding the use of ‘LXX’ or ‘Septuagint’ in favour of the more accurate designation ‘Old Greek’. See R. T. McLay, The Use of the Septuagint in New Testament Research (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2003), p. 6 and R. A. Kraft, ‘Para-mania: Beside, Before and Beyond Bible Studies,’ JBL 126:1 (2007), pp. 11– 17.

1.1 The use of Scriptural texts in Hebrews

7

1.1 The use of Scriptural texts in Hebrews The use of Scripture in the Epistle to the Hebrews has attracted a great deal of scholarly attention. Discussion has focussed significantly on the Catena of Hebrews 1:1– 13, the treatment of Ps 110 in the epistle at large, the identity of the texts quoted by the author and their supposed Vörlagen, and the intellectual background to the exegetical techniques employed by the author. Hebrews 3:1– 4:13⁷ is no exception as it represents what is possibly the longest passage of the New Testament devoted to the explanation of a single lemma.⁸ In general, the author of Hebrews has a high view of the authority of the Scriptures of Israel.⁹ Whilst it has often been assumed that such texts are undermined by the author’s apparent supersessionism, it is probable, on the basis of Heb 1:1– 2, that there is no distinction between the authority of God’s word through the prophets and God’s word through a son, except that one occurred in the past and the other in the present ‘last days’.¹⁰ Andrew Lincoln notes the preference in Hebrews for excerpts that appear as direct discourse, rather than third person narrative.¹¹ This can be seen in the clear priority given to texts from the Greek Psalter, both of which are cited more frequently and play a larger role in the structure and argument of Hebrews than do other types of

 Or, at the very least, 3:7– 4:13.  Buchanan’s suggestion that the whole of Hebrews is a homiletical midrash on Ps 110 would make for a longer candidate. George Wesley Buchanan, To The Hebrews: Translation, Comment and Conclusions (ABC; New York: Doubleday, 1972), p.xix. R. T. France, ‘The Writer of the Hebrews as a Biblical Expositor,’ TynB 47:2 (1996), p. 268 regards the treatment of Ps 95 as the most ‘sustained application.’ Peter Enns, ‘The Interpretation of Psalm 95 in Hebrews 3:1– 4:13’ in Early Christian Interpretation of the Scriptures of Israel: Investigations and Proposals, (ed. Craig Evans and James A. Sanders; JSNTSup 148; Sheffield: Sheffield Academic Press, 1997), p. 352 notes that here, unlike other parts of Hebrews, the text is present for ‘exposition’, much more than a proof text. However, Hebrews 7:1– 28, as will be seen, offers a similarly sustained ‘exposition’ on Ps 110:4 (cf. John 6:30 – 58 and 2 Cor 3:7– 18).  Westcott claims that ‘the message through the Son takes up and crowns all that has gone before.’ B. F.Westcott, The Epistle to the Hebrews: The Greek Text with Notes and Essays (London: MacMillan, 1909), p.lviii.  Gene R. Smillie, ‘Contrast or Continuity in Hebrews 1:1– 2?’ NTS 51:4 (2005), pp. 543 – 551. Cf. Graham Hughes, Hebrews and Hermeneutics: The Epistle to the Hebrews as a New Testament Example of Biblical Interpretation (SNTSMS 36; Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1979), p. 36 and Richard B. Hays, ‘“Here We Have No Lasting City”: New Covenantalism in Hebrews’, in The Epistle to the Hebrews and Christian Theology (ed. Richard Bauckham, Daniel R. Driver, Trevor A. Hart and Nathan MacDonald; Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2009), p. 165.  Andrew Lincoln, Hebrews: A Guide (London: Continuum, 2006), p. 75.

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scriptural texts. Perhaps the most noted characteristic of Hebrews’ use of Scripture is its Christological hermeneutic. The author’s approach to the OT may be summarised as follows: Christ, by whom God has now spoken his final word (1:1 f.), was alive and active in creation (1:2) and throughout Israel’s history. Any part of the OT may thus in principle be understood as speaking about Christ, or as spoken by or to him.¹²

However, this Christological reading is not so prominent in the author’s extensive treatment of Ps 95, which August Strobel describes as an ‘Exkurs’.¹³ Instead, different typological, literary and historical methods are employed which make this complex exposition a promising object of study.

1.1.1 Hermeneutics in Hebrews 3:1 – 4:13 It will be necessary to examine the whole treatment of the Psalm excerpt, not just the argument from history, in order to understand the particular hermeneutical value of the exposition. This study will initially attempt to explicate how the argument functions without much consideration of its exegetical background. It will be shown that the author’s hermeneutics are characterised by a high view of the text’s theological authority, both as the voice of the Holy Spirit and as the ‘two-edged sword’ that challenges the reader; an attentiveness to the detail of the text, seen in the choice of passage for the gezerah shewah argument; a concern for the historical referent and context of the text and a concern for its contemporary application.

1.1.2 Hebrews 3:1 – 6: Introduction There is disagreement about how these verses, which compare the relative status and authority of Moses and Christ, fit in with the ‘exposition’ that begins with the citation from Ps 95 in 3:6. Indeed, such rigid structural division might seem to be inappropriate as a means of analysing a first century document, were it not for the author of Hebrews’ own sophisticated application of Hellen-

 Paul Ellingworth, The Epistle to the Hebrews: A Commentary on the Greek Text (NIGNT; Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1993), pp. 41– 42.  August Strobel, Der Brief an die Hebräer (NTD 9/2; Göttingen: Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 1991), p. 40.

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istic rhetorical technique.¹⁴ At the very least, there is insufficient evidence to disassociate 3:1– 6 from the treatment of Ps 95. The themes of Moses and the identity of the people of God that dominate 3:1– 6 are developed as the author asks the reader which group of people have access to God’s rest, and what is their means of having access to that rest. The author moves by associative reasoning to consider the status of the wilderness generation, having assured readers that the one they adhere to is greater than Moses (cf. 3:16) by employing Ps 95.¹⁵ This is suggested all the more by the use of διό in the formula introducing the lemma from Ps 95.

1.1.3 Hebrews 3:7 – 11: Primary Lemma The lemma quotes Ps 95:7b-11 as the voice of the Holy Spirit in the present tense.¹⁶ This follows the consistent practice of the author to place biblical texts on the mouths of divine characters, without reference to a human author.¹⁷ Because of this, it is somewhat striking when the author shows an awareness of the supposed historical setting of a text, as in 4:6 – 10, 7:4, 11:18 and 21. There has been much discussion relating to the origins of this text. It is generally agreed that the excerpt is taken from a Greek translation, rather than being a translation of a Hebrew text undertaken by the author himself. Where the excerpt disagrees with a most probable translation of the MT, it usually does so in agreement with extant Greek sources. Where it differs from such sources, as it

 Note the structural use of κεφάλαιον in 8:1.  ‘Moses’ authority at legislator is surpassed by the Son’s legal authority’ using Ps 95. Ina Willi-Plein, ‘Some Remarks on Hebrews from the Viewpoint of Old Testament Exegesis’ in Hebrews: Contemporary Methods – New Insights (ed. Gabriella Gelardini; BIS 75; Leiden: Brill, 2005), p. 28.  Robert Gordon is wrong to suggest that it is this introductory formula that contemporises the text. Robert P. Gordon, Hebrews (Sheffield: Sheffield Academic Press, 2000), p. 58. As will be seen below, that is achieved through the use of σήμερον and the historical argument that accompanies it.  See 1:5, 6, 7, 8, 10, 2:12, 13, 6:14, 7:21, 10:5, 36. This is largely consistent with the Rabbinic practice exemplified in Talmudic literature. 2:6 is notably anonymous. See also Luke Timothy Johnson, ‘The Scriptural World of Hebrews,’ Int 57:3 (2003), p. 240. Ken Schenk, ‘God Has Spoken: Hebrews’ Theology of the Scriptures,’ in The Epistle to the Hebrews and Christian Theology (ed. Richard Bauckham, Daniel R. Driver, Trevor A. Hart and Nathan MacDonald; Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2009), p. 324 comments on the ambiguous sense of textuality in Hebrews’ use of Scripture, noting that the author often moves from relating Scripture as (apparantly unwritten) direct speech to close exegetical discussion with significant attention to detail, suggesting an understanding of the text as something written.

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does when it employs ἐν δοκιμασίᾳ in 3:9 and ταύτῃ in 3:10, it is usually assumed that the author has adapted the texts to suit his argument.¹⁸ Whilst the rearrangement of words in a text is common in the Alexandrian practice of ἀναστροφή, exemplified by Sosibius of Lacedaemon and to some extent paralleled in Rabbinic practice,¹⁹ the insertion of terms is unusual and certainly seems hard to integrate with the author’s understanding that in his lemma τὸ πνεῦμα τὸ ἅγιον speaks. Moreover, the assumption that the author has adapted his lemma is only realistic when it is compared to later Greek texts. There was much greater textual diversity in Greek translations of the Hebrew Scripture than is usually recognised,²⁰ so it is possible that the author quotes from an excerpt of a text which itself contains variations from Codices Vaticanus and Alexandrinus.²¹ It is also possible that the creation of the new clause καὶ εἶδον τὰ ἔργα μου τεσσαράκοντα ἔτη separates God’s anger from the ‘wilderness wanderings’, thus allowing the wilderness generation to act as a type for the author’s audience. The earthly pilgrimage of the people of God in Hebrews is not otherwise understood as the result of God’s anger, rather it is the wonderful, though difficult, entrance into God’s rest. The alternative citation from Ps 95 allows such a positive view of pilgrimage, suggesting that the author has adjusted it to suit his needs. However, 3:17 goes on to associate God’s anger with the forty years  The ‘changed’ text certainly does this, as ταύτῃ enables the text to present a present challenge to the reader, though it is important to note that the author seems to be aware in 3:17 of an alternative text that defies his own quotation.  David Daube, ‘Alexandrian Methods of Interpretation and the Rabbis’ in Essays in GraecoRoman and Related Talmudic Literature (ed. Harry M. Orlinsky; New York: Ktav Publishing, 1977), p. 166 argues for the similarity of these two practices, particularly their assumption of the text’s ‘supernatural quality’ that gives it potency even when rearranged.  Kraft, ‘Para-mania’, pp. 11– 17.  My own feeling is that the unusual insertion of διό after τεσσαράκοντα ἔτη reflects a translator’s attempt to preserve something of the poetic structure of a Hebrew Vörlage. The Hebrew text in BHS runs with a confident 3+3 metre except when a bicolon begins with ‫ כי‬and the metre is disrupted (G. Henton Davies, ‘Psalm 95,’ ZAW 85:2 (1973), p. 186 describes the psalm as composed of two ‘hymnic features’ beginning with ‫)כי‬. The exception to this rule is the bicola beginning with ‫ ארבעים שנה‬which may have begun with ‫ כי‬if this structural pattern was emphasised in the transmission which produced the Vörlage. This explains why there might have been an extra διό, as a translation of ‫כי‬, in the Greek text received by the author. George Howard (‘Hebrews and the Old Testament Quotations,’ NovT 10 [1968], pp. 208 – 209) supports this suggestion by claiming that the scriptural quotations in Hebrews could be based on a Hebrew Vörlage older than the MT, as does the creativity of translators of the Hebrew Bible into Greek noted by Ronald L. Troxel, ‘Exegesis and Theology in the LXX: Isaiah V 26 – 30,’ VT 43:1 (1993). As Lyle Eslinger points out, cases of ‘inner-biblical exegesis’, such as this, shed light upon the composition history of cited texts. Lyle Eslinger, ‘Inner-Biblical Exegesis and Inner-Biblical Allusion: The Question of Category,’ VT 42:1 (1992), p. 47.

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of wandering, as in the majority text, indicating the author’s lack of concern for a citation that agrees with the commentary he would like to add to it. The manner in which the author cites his chosen text is foundational for any analysis of his hermeneutical method. It certainly cannot be proven convincingly that the author has modified the excerpt from Ps 95; rather it is more likely that he shows a great deal of respect for the text. The length of his treatment of the text and the nature of the historical arguments he employs suggest a real concern to interpret it correctly rather than use it simply as a rhetorical proof-text.

1.1.4 Hebrews 3:12 – 13: First Paraenesis The first paraenetic follows the primary lemma without any mediating exegetical argument, urging the readers to watch out for καρδία πονηρὰ ἀπιστίας ἐν τῷ ἀποστῆναι ἀπὸ θεοῦ ζῶντος. The author challenges his audience to act in a way that he must regard as obvious given the psalm citation. The self-evidence of the challenge of the paraenetic can be seen as the author employs terms and concepts from the psalm and applies them directly to the audience without explanation.²² In a way, this paraenetic also functions as an introduction to the commentary by providing some of the themes that will be discussed later, in particular the imperative posed by σήμερον (to be developed in 4:6 – 10) and the danger of apostasy (to be developed in the argument of 3:14– 19).

1.1.5 Hebrews 3:14 – 19: Argument from historic referent In 3:14 the reason that Ps 95 can be applied as directly as in the first paraenetic of the exposition becomes clear. Judging by the διό of 3:7, the excerpt was introduced to reinforce the promise that the audience can be τὸν οἶκον [θεοῦ] by holding fast (κατάσχωμεν) to ‘the confidence and boasting of hope’.²³ After the paraenetic, in 3:14, the audience is reminded of its status in Christ and the

 David Flusser, ‘“Today if You Will Listen to His Voice”: Creative Exegesis in Hebrews 3 – 4’ in Creative Biblical Exegesis: Christian and Jewish Hermeneutics through the Centuries (ed. Benjamin Uffenheimer and Henning Grat Reventlow; JSOTSup 59; Sheffield: JSOT Press, 1988), p. 56 claims that verse 13 alludes to Lev 19:17. However, due to his concern to explain the exposition of Ps 95 as a Midrash, he is perhaps too sensitive to possible intertextuality.  Harold W. Attridge, The Epistle to the Hebrews: A Commentary on the Epistle to the Hebrews (Hermeneia; Philadelphia: Fortress, 1989), p. 114.

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need to hold fast (κατάσχωμεν) as the basis for the challenge of the paraenetic. The explanatory γάρ makes it clear that the warning of the psalm, repeated in 3:15, can be directed towards the audience μέτοχοι γὰρ τοῦ Χριστοῦ γεγόναμεν. The Christological hermeneutic so crucial to the exordium of Hebrews appears in a different form here. The text is not assumed to refer to Christ (as in 1:8 – 12), nor is it put on the lips of Christ (10:5 – 7), rather Christology is the means by which the scriptural text is able to refer to the contemporary community devoted to Christ as it addresses the historic people of God.²⁴ The author supports the warning of the psalm using an argument from history. The truth of the text, and likewise the authority of the first paraenetic, is confirmed by the historical fact of the failure of the wilderness generation to enter God’s rest δι’ ἀπιστίαν: the author’s interpretation of μὴ σκληρύνητε τὰς καρδίας ύμῶν in 3:8. The argument answers the question designed to explicate the reference in 3:8 to the παραπικρασμῷ: ‘who are they who, having heard, rebelled (παρεπίκραναν)?’ Of the five rhetorical questions that answer that question using an understanding of history, three employ terminology borrowed from the psalm; τεσσαράκοντα ἔτη, ὤμοσεν μὴ εἰσελεύσεσθαι εἰς τὴν κατάπαυσιν αὐτοῦ and εἰσελθεῖν, giving the impression of thorough and undeniable application of the text. This rephrasing of terminology taken from a lemma is consistent with rabbinic practice, though it is unusual to see it referred to a specific event in history.²⁵ A reference to history is used to demonstrate that the warning of the repeated quotation in 3:5 has substance, though the author will later place the psalm in a Davidic context to suggest that the warning still stands.

1.1.6 Hebrews 4:1 – 2: Second Paraenesis Having employed an historical argument about the wilderness generation to prove that 3:11 is not an empty threat, the author is able to include another paraenetic which also serves to introduce the next theme of the exposition, the continued availability of God’s κατάπαυσις. The author’s interpretation of μὴ σκληρύνητε τὰς καρδίας ὑμῶν as ἀπιστίαν in 3:19 explains how 4:2 can support the charge of the paraenetic (‘ensure that none of you fail to enter the rest’).

 It cannot be doubted that the author of Hebrews considers the psalm to refer originally to an earlier generation, cf. 4:7.  See the discussion below on the use of ‫ פתר‬in haggadic literature. See also, Susan E. Docherty, The Use of the Old Testament in Hebrews: A Case Study in Early Jewish Bible Interpretation (WUNT II 260; Tübingen: Mohr Siebeck, 2009), p. 187.

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Since the crime of the wilderness generation is taken to be the apostasy of unbelief (3:19), the author’s audience may likewise fail to enter God’s rest for the same reason. Whilst this straightforward application of the psalm’s witness to a supposed historical warning to the people of the Exodus is made possible by Christology in 3:14, now it is achieved by means of typology in 4:2. The community of the Exodus had the good news proclaimed to it, just as the author’s audience has in the first century, hence the psalm’s perceived challenge to believe stands for them both. Attridge notes: The Psalm’s reference to divine rest is seen to be not a simple analogy between the exodus generation and the psalmist’s audience, but as a prophetic proclamation of the good news itself, a reaffirmation of God’s promise directed to anyone who has faith.²⁶

1.1.7 Hebrews 4:3 – 5: Argument from gezerah shewah The exposition of Ps 95 has already claimed entry into God’s κατάπαυσις as the goal of the epistle’s intended audience (4:1). The author now proceeds to employ the first of two arguments to prove to his audience that this is indeed a goal that continues to hold meaningful promise for God’s people.²⁷ The argument of 4:3 – 5 employs a characteristic example of the rabbinic principle of gezerah shewah, by which a problematic term is explained through reference to another occurrence of the same term in scripture.²⁸ In this case κατάπαυσις from Ps 95 is explained

 Attridge, Hebrews, p. 130. See also Ernst Käsemann, The Wandering People of God: An Investigation of the Letter to the Hebrews (trans. Roy A. Harrisville and Irving L. Sandberg; Minneapolis: Fortress, 1984), p. 18, Hughes, Hermeneutics, p. 51 and France, ‘Writer of Hebrews’, p. 270.  Though, as Lane points out, this is a promise already entered into in the present, claiming that εἰσερχόμεθα γὰρ εἰς τὴν κατάπαυσιν (4:3) should not be understood simply as a proleptic entry. William L. Lane, Hebrews 1 – 8 (WBC 47a; Texas: Word Books, 1991), p. 99. This has significant value for the debate regarding the extent to which κατάπαυσιν still refers to a physical place. Gerhard von Rad notes that ‫ חנומה‬in the MT represents ‘tangible safety from enemies’, a physical land, yet also regards its use in Ps 95 as eschatological. Gerhard von Rad, ‘There Remains Still a Rest for the People of God: An Investigation of a Biblical Conception’ in The Problem of the Hexateuch and Other Essays (trans. E. W. Trueman Dicken; London: SCM, 1966), pp. 95 & 99. The eschatological language of Hebrews demonstrates the typical materiality of apocalyptic Judaism (Marie E. Isaacs, Sacred Space: An Approach to the Theology of the Epistle to the Hebrews (JSNTSup 73; Sheffield: SAP, 1992), p. 86.), yet this understanding of κατάπαυσιν suggests that it is a physical reality entered into spiritually prior to its fullfillment. See the discussions in Ellingworth, A Commentary, p. 254 and Harold W. Attridge, ‘“Let us Strive to Enter that Rest”: The Logic of Hebrews 4:1– 11,’ HTR 73:2 (1980), pp. 282– 283.  Docherty, Old Testament in Hebrews, pp. 189 – 190.

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in the light of κατέπαυσεν in Gen 2:2, where God rests on the seventh day of creation, though this excerpt is introduced with the indefinite που. The choice of Gen 2:2 as a secondary lemma is more sophisticated than may first appear. There is a wealth of material employing forms of κατάπαυσις in the Greek bibles, yet the author is keen to exploit a reference that coheres closely to the use in Ps 95. The psalm deals specifically with κατάπαυσίν μου: a rest belonging to God.²⁹ It is the μου that governs the choice of Gen 2:2, which describes God’s own act of resting. The analogy is exploited in two ways. Firstly, it demonstrates that κατάπαυσις cannot be understood simply as entrance into a promised land, since it is something enjoyed by God.³⁰ Secondly, it enables the author to further define the concept as σαββατισμός, since God κατέπαυσεν on the seventh day in the excerpt from Gen 2:2.

1.1.8 Hebrews 4:6 – 10: Argument from Davidic authorship The second argument the author of Hebrews employs to demonstrate the continued availability of κατάπαυσις is of most interest to this study. As will be suggested below, the reasoning of this argument is highly unusual in its own ancient context, largely because of its dependence upon the author’s own particular theological worldview. Before outlining the argument, it is necessary to note two historical aspects of the psalm in the author’s exposition. The author has, up to this point, discussed the psalm within the historic context of the wilderness generation. The fact that he regards the text itself as originating with David μετὰ τοσοῦτον χρόνον seems to pose a problem to the earlier argument.

 Matthew Thiessen, ‘Hebrews and the End of the Exodus,’ NovT 49:4 (2007), p. 358.  Isaacs, Sacred Space, p. 88, understands this change of status as a necessary response to the fall of the Jerusalem temple.  That the author claims Davidic authorship suggests that he may not be employing a testimonia collection, as is often suggested. E.g. M. C. Albl, And Scripture cannot be Broken: The Form and Function of Early Christian Testimonia Collections (NovTSup 96; Leiden: Brill, 1999), pp. 201– 207. Such collections (e. g. 4QTest) introduce biblical excerpts without any indication of their origins. The MT places no superscription above the psalm whilst extant Greek texts have αἰνος ῷδῆς τῷ Δαυὶδ, providing further evidence of the author’s use of Greek texts. Markus Barth argues that the prominence of psalm citations in Hebrews suggests that such texts had a liturgical function in the community to or from which the author wrote, and so are unlikely to be from a collection of short testimonia. Markus Barth, ‘The Old Testament in Hebrews: An Essay in Biblical Hermeneutics’ in Current Issues in New Testament Interpretation (London: SCM, 1962), p. 73. The length of psalm excerpts in 11QPsa, for example, points to the availability of much larger pieces of scriptural material than is assumed by Albl.

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³¹ It is likely that, whilst the author understands the psalm to be Davidic, he also understands it to be referring to a real warning given to the wilderness generation in their own time.³² The fact that this warning is reiterated in a time when it should be meaningless suggests to the author that κατάπαυσιν μου still holds promise to those living after the Exodus.³³ This argument begins in 4:6. Since God has spoken a word in history about the possibility of entering his rest (albeit expressed negatively³⁴) and the generation to whom it was addressed failed to enter, the promise still stands: ἐπεὶ οὖν ἀπολείπεται τινὰς εἰσελθεῖν εἰς αὐτήν. The idea that God’s promises have an enduring quality guaranteed by his permanence is a particular feature of the author’s theology (cf. 10:23 and 11:11).³⁵ Because the wilderness generation did not realise entry into God’s rest, which as the author argues must not be thought of merely as the promised land of Canaan, God’s promise must remain. Hence, in 4:7, God ‘appointed another day’, making this later present (σήμερον) the same as the decisive time of the warning originally given to the wilderness generation.³⁶ This day was appointed ἐν Δαυίδ, presumably referring to David’s agency as author (an understanding which Erich Grässer suggests originates with the Old Greek superscription³⁷), the text having already been described as spoken by the Holy Spirit. Because the psalm originates in the time of David, the κατάπαυσις it promises must have been intended to refer to something that was a possibility for a Davidic audience, something that is not completed when the Promised Land is possessed by Israel. Εἰ γὰρ αὐτοὺς Ἰησοῦς

 Randall C. Gleason, ‘The Old Testament Background of Rest in Hebrews 3:7– 4:11,’ BSac 157 (2000), p. 290. Gleason argues that the language of μὴ σκληρύνητε τὰς καρδίας ὑμῶν reflects God’s anger shown towards his people in the events of Num 14. This allusion in the Psalm is noted by the author of Hebrews who employs other language from this passage, such as τὰ κῶλα ἔπεσεν ἐν τῇ ἐρήμῳ (3:17).  It is likely that Hebrews understands it to be the same promise that is presented in each time. ‘In fact the promise…or gospel…are regarded as being identical for both communities. One can only speak of a ‘neue Heilssituation’ in the very limited sense that the renewal of the promise (i. e., the same one) in the time of David testifies that it is still intact.’ Hughes, Hermeneutics, p. 43.  Though conceived of as ἐπαγγελίας by the author, as in 4:1.  Hughes, Hermeneutics, p. 41.  Attridge points out that this argument would be impossible without the σήμερον of Ps 95. Attridge, ‘Let us Strive,’ p. 280. Kenneth Thomas notes the interesting fact that the ‘indefinite’ use of σήμερον to signify a period longer than a single day is aided by the psalm excerpts unusual association of τεσσαράκοντα ἔτη and the supposedly singular ἡμέραν τοῦ πειρασμοῦ. Kenneth J. Thomas, ‘The Old Testament Citations in Hebrews,’ NTS 11 (1965), p. 307.  Erich Grässer, An die Hebräer: Hebr 1 – 6 (EKK 17; Zürich: Benziger/Neukirchener, 1990), p. 213. Grässer also notes the absence of such attribution in the Hebrew texts.

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κατέπαυσεν, οὐκ ἂν περὶ ἄλλης ἐλάλει μετὰ ταῦτα ἡμέρας (4:8). The author suggests that the warning of Ps 95 would not exist if Joshua had been successful in achieving rest, reinforcing the spiritualised reading of κατάπαυσις created by the gezerah shewah argument.³⁸ Therefore, the promise of κατάπαυσις remains. By locating the psalm in its supposed authorial context, the author has attempted to persuade his audience not to hope for the restoration of Canaan, but to move on to another πατρίδα (11:14). The audience can expect rest from labour as God rested from his own labour, an idea dependent on the Gen 2:2 excerpt (4:10). R. T. France summarises the logic of the argument well: Because the psalmist, writing centuries after the exodus events, could still appeal for response ‘today,’ the writer infers that the rest he refers to cannot be only a lost opportunity in the distant past, but remains available to the people of God.³⁹

The understanding that this argument is historical, employing a sense of the text’s setting in history to determine its meaning, contradicts Ellingworth’s analysis of Hermeneutics in Hebrews. He writes: It would be anachronistic to confuse the approach of the author of Hebrews with that of a modern scholar, drawing a clear line of demarcation between the meaning of an OT text in its original setting and its possible application to a later situation, whether in the first or the twentieth Century of the Christian era.⁴⁰

It would indeed be anachronistic to suggest that contemporary hermeneutical methods are used in Hebrews. However, that is not to say that the author of Hebrews fails to locate the text in its original setting (which he clearly does by arguing from its dating after the exodus) in order to establish its meaning for his contemporaries. One only needs to ask whether the particular argument for the availability of κατάπαυσις would function if Ps 95 was understood by the author to be concurrent with the wilderness generation. To claim the text as μετὰ τοσοῦτον χρόνον and to use this as a means of asking what κατάπαυσις refers to is to show an interest in the historic setting of the text as defining its meaning.

 Ἰησοῦς clearly refers to Joshua, rather than Jesus. Ellingworth argues that the word order is designed to de-emphasise Ἰησοῦς, in contrast to Heb 2:9 which emphasises Ἰησοῦν. Ellingworth, A Commentary, p. 253.  France, Jesus and the Old Testament, p. 271.  Ellingwoth, A Commentary, p. 41.

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1.1.9 Hebrews 4:11 – 13: Third Paraenesis The final paraenetic differs little from the first two in 4:11. However, 4:12– 13 could be seen to function as an epilogue to the exposition enforcing this paraenetic.⁴¹ It does this as a reflection on the nature of God’s word, a dynamic word that offers a radical challenge to its audience.⁴² This word has certainly lived up to its description in these verses throughout the exposition, as Ps 95 has been made to threaten exclusion from God’s rest whilst promising entry into it for obedience.

1.2 Hermeneutics in Hebrews 7:1 – 28 It is likely that a similar exegetical technique to that used in 4:6 – 10 is employed in 7:1– 28 during an exposition of Ps 110:4 (OG Ps 109), particularly in 7:11 and reflected later in 7:18 – 19 and 28. It will be argued that whilst Hebrews is not interested in naming an historical author of Ps 110:4, it nevertheless seeks to place this text within an historical framework in order to enable it to be seen to supersede, or at the very least, highlight the inadequacies of, the pentateuchal institution of the Levitical priesthood. This ‘historical’ aspect of the hermeneutics in this chapter of Hebrews has often been overlooked due to the unusual and perhaps more attractive Philonic techniques of the first three verses and the midrashic use of Gen 14 in the next seven verses. However, it will be argued that it is the ‘historical’ argument that is of most theological significance for the larger argument of Hebrews whilst also being, along with the argument of 4:6 – 10, the most distinctive, lacking clear parallels in literature contemporary to it.

1.2.1 Hebrews 7:1 – 3: Etymological argument At this point in the argument of Hebrews, the author has repeatedly urged his audience to listen to the voice of God to avoid the dangers of failing to enter God’s rest (Heb 3:1– 4:16). He has introduced a more sustained reflection on

 James W. Thompson, ‘The Hermeneutics of the Epistle to the Hebrews,’ RQ 38:4 (1996), p. 232.  James Swetnam, ‘Jesus as Λόγος in Hebrews 4, 12– 13,’ Bib 62:2 (1981), p. 217 argues that this λόγος is Jesus and the actions attributed to him here represent the circumcision of the heart he offers that is better than that offered by Joshua (cf. Heb 4:8). However, Hebrews never discusses a circumcision offered by Joshua, hence this comparison seems quite out of place.

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Chapter 1: Historical Exegesis in the Epistle to the Hebrews

Christ’s high priesthood, concentrating on the humility and suffering of Christ (Heb 5:1– 9). It is within this context that Ps 110:4 is introduced as a proof of Christ’s appointment by God as priest by means of an oath. This discussion ends prematurely as the author again urges his audience to consider the importance of what he is going to teach in the rest of Hebrews (Heb 5:11– 12). The author then returns to the theme of Christ’s priesthood as a means of providing hope to his audience after the terrifying warnings of the previous section (Heb 6:13 – 20). In Heb 7:1 the author begins the priestly discourse proper, as he addresses the unique nature of the sacrifice offered by Christ and what it has to offer the audience.⁴³ The exposition of Ps 110:4 in Heb 7:1:28 proceeds without immediate quotation of the lemma.⁴⁴ It begins by discussing the historical person of Melchizedek as described in Gen 14:18 – 20, recalling details from that text which are not found in Ps 110:4, such as the occasion at which Melchizedek encounters Abraham as well as the former’s kingship. The title ἱερεὺς τοῦ θεοῦ τοῦ ὑψίστου, with which Melchizedek is identified, is identical to the common Old Greek translation of ‫כהן לאל עליון‬, employing a title for God that is not found elsewhere in Hebrews.⁴⁵ These details from Gen 14, accompanied by the reflection upon the significance of Abraham’s tithe to Melchizedek from Gen 14:20 in Heb 7:4– 10 make it clear that the author of Hebrews is beginning his exposition of Ps 110:4 with another text. This approach has a clear resemblance to proem form in Rabbinic exegetical material, which typically starts by discussing a secondary text before bringing the fruit of that discussion to bear upon a primary or lectionary text.⁴⁶  This brief synopsis is deliberately vague in recognition of the complexity of the issues surrounding the rhetorical structure of Hebrew which can not be done justice here. For a helpful analysis of the most significant contributions to the discussion of the structure of Hebrews see Lane, Hebrews, p.lxxxix.  Lane, Hebrews, p. 177 demonstrates against Fitzmyer (see Joseph Fitzmyer, ‘Now this Melchizedek…(Heb. 7,1)’, CBQ 25 [1963], pp. 305), that the whole of Heb 7 is not a midrash on Gen 14, noting the absence of Gen 14 in Heb 7:11– 28 and the clear subservience of Gen 14 to Ps 110:4 in the author’s argument. David M. Hay, Glory at the Right Hand: Psalm 110 in Early Christianity (SBLMS 18; Georgia: SBL, 1989), p. 144 also notes regarding the whole of Heb 7 that ‘[Ps 110] supplies much of the driving pulse of the argument. Indeed the psalm verse seems an indispensible arrow in the author’s quiver, and a prod to his thought as well as a tool of persuasion.’  As Joseph Fitzmyer, ‘Melchizedek in the MT, LXX and NT,’ Bib 81:1 (2000), p. 66 points out, ‫ אל עליון‬may have been the name of another Canaanite deity which was later assimilated into the language of the Massoretic Text.  However, given the overall rhetorical structure of Hebrews it is not clear whether one should expect to find miniature sermons obeying certain forms within it. Moreover, it is not clear

1.2 Hermeneutics in Hebrews 7:1 – 28

19

The use of ἑρμηνευόμενος in v.2 should not be seen as introducing an allegorical statement, rather an etymological one aimed at describing the nature of Melchizedek’s kingship.⁴⁷ The name Melchizedek really is a conjunction of ‫ מלך‬in construct form and ‫צדך‬, separated by a maqqif, and the author’s translation is appropriate. The next claim, that Melchizedek is King of Salem, originates as an observation from Gen 14:18, whether the author’s own or not, and the translation ‘εἰρήνης’ follows the traditional Old Greek translations. Having noted that, it seems unlikely that this argument is based upon the author’s own knowledge of classical Hebrew and the almost certain dependence of this passage upon Philo’s Leg. All. 3.79, or a common source at the very least, are noted below.⁴⁸ It is also fairly unlikely that there is any relationship between the treatment of Melchizedek here and that of 11QMelch.⁴⁹ The claim that Melchizedek lacks ge-

whether Heb 7 corresponds to proem form, since the primary text has already been quoted prior to its exposition in this chapter.  If H. H. Rowley (‘Melchizedek and David,’ VT 17:4 [1967], p. 485) is correct, then this interest in Melchizedek as king goes far beyond the interests of Ps 110. ‘In Ps. cx only the priestly function of Melchizedek is relevant. If in Ps. cx David as king and priest [Rowley also disputes a Davidic reference for the psalm] is held to correspond to Melchizedek, it is hard to see what Abraham’s giving of tithes to Melchizedek could be supposed aetiologically to correspond to. David was already king before he conquered Jerusalem, so no new status in relation to Israel was established by that conquest.’ Melchizedek’s relation to Jerusalem reflects a popular tradition that can be seen in Tg. Ps.-J, Tg. Onq., Tg Neof., 1QapGen. Cf. Ps 76:2.  This is unlikely to be the only Philonic influence upon these first three verses of chapter seven. Jerome H. Neyrey,‘“Without Beginning of Days or End of Life” (Hebrews 7:3): Topos for a True Deity,’ CBQ 53:3 (1991), pp. 439 – 455 argues that the phrase μήτε ἀρχὴν ήμερῶν μήτε ζωῆς τέλος ἔχων reflects Philonic interest in the eternity of God, expressed in terms such as ἀγενήτος, ἀγεννήτος, ἀθανάτος, ἀφθάρτος, ἀνάρχος and ἀτελεύτητος. However, since the language of Heb 7:3 employs none of these technical terms, it is equally possible that the eternity of Melchizedek simply reflects notions of eternity borrowed from Old Greek texts, such as Ps 102:26 – 28 which is quoted in Heb 1:10 – 12.  Deborah W. Rooke, ‘Jesus as Royal Priest: Reflections on the Interpretation of the Melchizedek Tradition in Hebrews 7,’ Bib 81:1 (2000), p. 84 ‘There is little evidence in Heb 7 for the influence of such ideas, either as positive models for the portrayal of Melchizedek or as negative concepts against which the writer polemicizes. Instead, rather than being based on contemporary eschatological or angelological speculation about Melchizedek, the interpretation of Melchizedek in Hebrews is rooted firmly in the picture of this mysterious figure as he appears in the Old Testament.’ Even though Joseph Fitzmyer, ‘Further Light on Melchizedek from Qumran Cave 1,’ JBL 86:1 (1967), p. 41 had previously quite cautiously claimed that the traditions behind 11QMelch can be seen in Hebrews 7, the significant characteristics of 11QMelch that he identifies, such as the importance of Jubilee and the stylistic similarity with 4QFlor, make any close relationship unlikely. It is significant that there is no equivalent to the important notion of a group of people who belong to Melchizedek (seen in 11QMelch vv. 5 – 6 ‫והמה נחל]ת מלכי צד[ק אשר‬ ‫ ישיבמה‬and 8 ‫ ) ו[אנש]י [גורל מל]כי [צדק‬in Hebrews. Moreover, v.6 attributes future action to

20

Chapter 1: Historical Exegesis in the Epistle to the Hebrews

nealogy is dependent upon Gen 14, where Melchizedek appears unannounced, probably because the Melchizedek account originated as an independent supplement to the Jahwistic narrative.⁵⁰ Robert P. Gordon points out that ‘possession of proper genealogical title was essential to the exercise of priesthood in the world of the Old Testament; cf. Ezra 2:61– 62,’ thus it is not surprising that this detail is exploited by the author of Hebrews in the form of an argument from silence.⁵¹

Melchizedek, a dimension completely lacking in Hebrews. Eric F. Mason, “You Are a Priest Forever”: Second Temple Jewish Messianism and the Priestly Christology of the Epistle to the Hebrews (STDJ 74; Leiden: Brill, 2008), pp. 196 – 203 argues against such complete dismissal of the similarity of Hebrews’ presentation of Melchizedek and those of Qumran, suggesting that, despite clear differences between the two, Hebrews’ conception finds its closest parallels at Qumran. Similarly, M. de Longe and A. S. van der Woude, ‘11Q Melchizedek and the New Testament,’ NTS 12:4 (1965), p.321 suggest that only the qumranic notion of an archangelic Melchizedek can explain the reference in Heb 7:3 to Melchizedek’s eternal life (cf. Attridge, Hebrews, p. 194). However, this seems rather unnecessary due to their clear recognition of the use of quod non in Thora, non in mundo in this passage of Hebrews. Hay, Glory at the Right Hand, p. 153 also asserts against the idea that Heb 7 is dependent upon Qumran that ‘plainly [Melchizedek] has no independent significance in Hebrews; the author’s description of his office and his actions makes him not so much a parallel or prototype as simply a witness to Jesus’ unique office.’ Whilst there are indications that the Messianic expectation of Qumran was both royal and priestly, as seen in the use of ‫ משיה אהרן וישראל‬in CD, it is not clear whether these two aspects are to be embodied within a single figure, or indeed if there is any consistency in the Qumran literature on this point. Cf. Martin G. Abegg, ‘The Messiah at Qumran: Are We Still Seeing Double?’ DSD 2:2 (1995), pp. 124– 144.  Fitzmyer, ‘Melchizedek in the MT,’ p. 66 and Gerhard von Rad, Genesis, (trans. John H. Marks; London: SCM, 1961), p. 170. See also John G. Gammie, ‘Loci of the Melchizedek Tradition of Genesis 14:18 – 20,’ JBL 90:4 (1971), pp. 385 – 396 who argues in significant detail that this pericope has a much earlier dating than the surrounding text and that it originated as a traditional account of Melchizedek kept alive by the Shechem, Nob, Jerusalem and Shiloh cults. Yet, as Gordon J. Wenham, Genesis 1 – 15 (WBC 1; Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 1987), pp. 306 – 307 points out, the Mechizedek material is well integrated into the J material (much of which, in Gen 14, is also pre-jahwistic. Cf. E.A. Speiser, Genesis: A New Translation with Introduction and Commentary [ABC; New York: Doubleday, 1963], pp. 105 – 108) and that the encounter between the king of Sodom and Abraham becomes unintelligible without the account of Melchizedek.  Gordon, Hebrews, p. 81. Therefore it seems likely that Barry C. Joslin, Hebrews, Christ and the Law: The Theology of the Mosaic law in Hebrews 7:1 – 10:18 (Paternoster Biblical Monographs; Milton Keynes: Paternoster, 2008), p. 137 is wrong to claim that these are ‘assertions about Melchizedek that do not arise from and are not self-evident from a reading of the Genesis text.’ Cf. Georg Gäbel, Die Kulttheologie des Hebräerbriefes: eine exegetisch-religionsgeschichtliche Studie (WUNT II 212; Tübingen: Mohr Siebeck, 2006), p. 229.

1.2 Hermeneutics in Hebrews 7:1 – 28

21

1.2.2 Hebrews 7:4 – 10: Argument from an historic referent. Just as Heb 3:16 – 19 sought to explicate Ps 95:7– 11 by exploring the historical event to which the text was typically seen to relate, Heb 7:4– 10 seeks to illuminate Ps 110:4 by describing the account of Melchizedek in the narrative of Genesis 14.⁵² The author argues that because Abraham offered a tithe to Melchizedek,⁵³ and since the offering of a tithe indicates the inferiority of the one who gives to the one who receives, Abraham and his descendants have less authority than Melchizedek. By implication, then, the Levitical priesthood descended from Abraham through Levi also lacks the authority of Melchizedek and the order of priesthood Hebrews suggests is referred to in Ps 110:4. Stylistically, this argument assumes quite a different rhetorical form than Heb 3:16 – 19. Whereas the latter employs a series of simple and short rhetorical questions, the answers to which are supplied by further rhetorical questions, Heb 7:4– 10 employs a more ponderous and reflective style.⁵⁴ Here, the author proceeds by inviting his audience to θεωρεῖτε δὲ πηλίκος [ὁ Μελχισέδεκ] and gently asserts in v.9: καὶ ὡς ἔπος εἰπεῖν, δι’ Ἀβραὰμ καὶ Λευὶ ὁ δεκάτας λαμβάνων δεδεκάτωται. The conclusion that Gen 14:18 – 20 demonstrates the inferiority of Levi to Melchizedek seems to be posited with a degree of caution lacking in Heb 3:16 – 19. However, the similarity of the two passages must not be overlooked. Both arguments seek to proceed towards identifying the true meaning of the text in question by questioning the ‘historical’ narrative to which that text alludes.⁵⁵ In doing so, both arguments depend upon shared knowledge (between the author and his audience) about Israel’s history, relating in Heb 3:16 – 19 to the

 Hay, Glory at the Right Hand, p. 146. ‘Despite the use of the Genesis narrative, only selected elements in it are picked up or even mentioned; while virtually every syllable in the psalm verse is probed for significance. The reader is never allowed to forget that the object of interest is not Melchizedek in himself but the one whom the psalm oracle likens to him.’  Though this is by no means clear in the Massoretic Text, since it is unclear to whom the phrase ‫ ויתן־לו מעשר מכל‬refers. Fitzmyer, ‘Melchizedek in the MT,’ p. 66.  Lane, Hebrews, p. 170 ‘The literary phrase ὡς ἔπος εἰπεῖν, “one might almost say,” was frequently used when a writer broke off his train of thought and, not wishing to treat his theme more fully, would summarise as succinctly as possible what he wanted to say. Here it indicates the writer clearly recognised his statement that Levi had paid a tithe to Melchizedek was not literally true…’ cf. Westcott, Hebrews, p.180 and Attridge, Hebrews, p. 197 who refers to the possibility that this ‘hesitation may be due, in part at least, to the fact that, by analogous logic, Jesus too could be said to have paid a tithe to Melchizedek.’  Though in the case of Heb 3:16 – 19, the author probably discusses history from the narrative of the Hebrew Bible to demonstrate that Ps 95:11 does not intend κατάπαυσιν to refer to the past entry of Israel into the land of Canaan.

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Chapter 1: Historical Exegesis in the Epistle to the Hebrews

destiny and attitude of the wilderness generation and in Heb 7:4– 10 to Levi’s descent from Abraham. Without the historical awareness of the audience which this shared knowledge indicates, the author would either have to supply extra biblical material to support his argument or else change his argument altogether. This dependence upon the audience’s historical knowledge suggests that a reasonably developed consciousness of Israel’s history was normative. It is this grasp of history as a vehicle of meaning: history which communicates value and which can be employed to clarify the meaning of a Scriptural text, which, as will be seen below, makes the exegetical use of historical and authorial context possible in Hebrews. As will also be noted below, this type of argumentation in Heb 7:4– 10 which seeks to refer the meaning of a text to an event in biblical narrative closely resembles the use of ‫ פתר‬in haggadic rabbinic literature. The sense in which the author creatively infers implications from the text for Levi in a manner which seems to supplement Gen 14:18 – 20 with ideas that are somehow present within the text though obviously beyond the imagination of the author of Gen 14:18 – 20, adds substance to Fitzmyer’s claim that this exposition is midrashic.⁵⁶

1.2.3 Hebrews 7:11 – 19: Ps 110:4 effects a change in the priesthood The author of Hebrews now moves to argue that the very existence in scripture of another order of priesthood is problematic for the Levitical priesthood. It is especially problematic since the author seems to be aware that the Melchizedek priesthood reference in Ps 110:4 originates after the institution of the Levitical priesthood, so as to suggest the inadequacy of the latter.⁵⁷ In this, the author seems to claim an historical location for Ps 110 which determines its relation to the broader theme of priesthood. If this is the case then something akin to an assumed historical Sitz im Leben is seen to determine the theological value

 Fitzmyer, ‘Now this Melchizedek,’ p. 305.  Interestingly, M.J. Paul, ‘The Order of Melchizedek (Ps 110:4 and Heb 7:3),’ WTJ 49:7 (1989), p. 200 argues for a very late date for Ps 110 due to lack of evidence of understandings of combined priestly and royal functions during the Monarchic period. He suggests that the text is most probably to be understood as a late eschatological work, relating primarily to an expected Messiah, rather than any actual ruler. However, we cannot assume that the author of Hebrews knew anything more about the setting of Ps 110 than is indicated in his argument. The suggestion summarised by Hay, Glory at the Right Hand, p. 134, which locates Ps 110 with post-exilic interest in a priest-Messiah (as witnessed in Zech 6:9 – 14) is also attractive.

1.2 Hermeneutics in Hebrews 7:1 – 28

23

of Ps 110 and enables it to be understood as a later supplement and corrective to the pentateuchal ἐντολή (Heb 7:18) regarding the Levitical priesthood. Yet this interest in the historical setting of Ps 110:4 and its historical relationship to earlier texts, texts alluded to that establish the Levitical priesthood (an historical relationship of ‘old’ to ‘later’), is somewhat hard to establish.⁵⁸ It is in-

 Attridge, Hebrews, p. 199, for example, does not consider the possibility of an historical relationship between the two texts being identified by the author, rather identifying Ps 110:4 as possessing a different literary character. ‘The author now explores the implications of what he construes as an oracle about a new priesthood.’ Gordon, Hebrews, p. 83 comes close to asserting an historical relationship between the two texts, but fails to substantiate how the author of Hebrews conceives of the origin of Ps 110:4. ‘That such a conferment should be announced already within the lifetime of the Levitical priesthood is taken as indication that the priestly system was deficient.’ See also James Moffatt, A Critical and Exegetical Commentary on the Epistle to the Hebrews (ICC; Edinburgh: T. & T. Clark, 1975), p. 96 ‘The inference that the νόμος is antiquated for Christians reaches the same end as Paul does by his dialectic, but by a very different route. Aνίστασθαι…and λέγεσθαι refer to Ps 1104, which is regarded as marking a new departure.’ See also F.F. Bruce, The Epistle to the Hebrews, (London and Edinburgh: Marshall, Morgan and Scott, 1964), p. 143 ‘It could not be argued that the latter priesthood (of Aaron) superseded the earlier (of Melchizedek); for when the priesthood of Aaron was well established the divine oracle was uttered which hailed the Messiah of David’s line as “a priest after the order of Melchizedek.”’ None of these commentators discuss the salvation-historical framework within which Ps 110:4 is understood, though both use language that places that text within an historical relation to the law of the Levitical priesthood. The attractive suggestion of Rooke, ‘Jesus as Royal Priest’, pp. 81– 94 that the primary distinction being drawn by Hebrews between Levitical and Melchizedek priesthood relate to ontology (that Levitcal priesthood is functional, whilst Melchizedek priesthood is ontological and royal) and is properly used to describe the Davidic king, need not be seen to contradict the idea of historical distinction. She argues that the ontological distinction is that which Ps 110:4 is itself making, and that no new level of interpretation is offered other than that the text is related to Christ. It is entirely possible for the relationship between the Levitical priesthood and Melchizedek priesthood to be one both of qualitative ontological improvement as well as superannuation on the basis of a more recent divine command. Hay, Glory at the Right Hand, p. 149 perceives the historical dimension argued for in the chapter in Heb 7:11– 14 yet does not substantiate his observation. Isaacs, Sacred Space, p. 154 does the same. Hugh W. Montefiore, The Epistle to the Hebrews (London: A. & C. Black, 1964), p. 123 notes a clear historical aspect to Heb 7:11 though he is quite mistaken as to its nature. He suggests that by referring to Melchizedek, the author of Hebrews is seeking to abrogate the law instituting the Levitical priesthood by looking back to the time before the law to a superior type of priest in a manner similar to Gal 3:1– 22. Montefiore fails to note, however, that Melchizedek is important because he appears in a scriptural text that originates after the law (cf. Heb 7:28 and Bruce, Hebrews, p. 143). The question of Hebrews’ relation to the exegetical practice of Paul has been recently taken up by Clare K. Rothschild, Hebrews as Pseudepigraphon: The History and Significance of the Pauline Attribution of Hebrews (WUNT 235; Tübingen: Mohr Siebeck, 2009), pp. 89 – 101. Rothschild notes the significant correlation between scriptural texts cited by Hebrews and Paul; however, many of these are not exclusive to these two writers in the New

24

Chapter 1: Historical Exegesis in the Epistle to the Hebrews

itially suggested by the question in 7:11: εἰ μὲν οὖν τελείωσις διὰ τῆς Λευιτικῆς ἱερωσύνης ἦν…τίς ἔτι χρεία κατὰ τὴν τάξιν Μελχισέδεκ ἕτερον ἀνίστασθαι ἱερέα…; Here the adverb ἔτι indicates a passage of time referring inferentially from the ancient institution of Levitical priesthood to a later present χρεία κατὰ τὴν τάξιν Μελχισέδεκ ἕτερον ἀνίστασθαι ἱερέα expressed in Ps 110:4.⁵⁹ Ἔτι suggests a sense of historical tension: ‘if perfection was [possible] through the Levitical priesthood…why was there still need for a different priest to arise after the order of Melchizedek…?’⁶⁰ This is the sense in which ἔτι is used in the previous verse. Just as Levi was still in the loins of Abraham waiting for birth at a later time, so the Levitical priesthood provokes a tension due to its failure to achieve ‘perfection’ that persists until another point in time. It is necessary here, if one wishes to follow this reading, to take οὖν in the first clause of the verse as denoting a past contrary-to-fact condition, establishing a rhetorical question relating to a referent in the past. This is the reading favoured by Westcott.⁶¹ Attridge’s objection to this and his preference for a more abstract condition depends upon his assumption that the whole Melchizedek argument of chapter seven is itself theoretical and abstract.⁶² This objection certainly seems to do justice to the abstract etymological argument of vv.1– 3 (though even this is an attempt to explain a problematic figure by referring to how he

Testament. For example, Ps 110:1 is notoriously popular in the New Testament; Gen 2 is also referred to in Matt 19:5 and Ps 8:6 is a probable influence upon the lemma of the Davidssohnfrage.  Of course, it could be claimed that the distinction between the earlier failed order and that of Ps 110:4 is one of the texts’ canonical, rather than historical position. It this were the case then the author perceived the challenge to Levitical priesthood to originate from the mere fact of Ps 110’s canonicity, that it can be found in Scripture after all that is written on the institution of the Levitical priesthood, almost as a supplement to what has already been read in Scripture. However, such a grasp of the structure of the Hebrew canon would be somewhat anachronistic and there is little evidence to suggest that the author of Hebrews had access to anything more that certain popular biblical texts.  Interestingly, Th. Booij, ‘Ps cx: Rule in the midst of your foes!’ VT 41:1 (1991), pp. 402– 403 notes that ‘the compound al-dibrat (with Hireq compaginis al-dibrät), just as al-dbar, apparently means “with regard to” or “for the cause of, for the sake of, because of”. In Ps. cx 4 there is no reason to translate otherwise than “for the sake of (or, because of) Melchizedek”… Behind Ps. cx 4 the following question is to be suspected: why may an Israelite, a worshipper of YHWH, reign from Zion? (Cf. ν 2 and Ps. ii 2– 3.) The answer is: because in Melchizedek’s time already YHWH, the Most High, had his dwelling-place there (cf. Ps. lxxvi 3).’  Westcott, Hebrews, p.180.  Attridge, Hebrews, p.199. The same debate could be had regarding the similar construction in Heb 8:4. Interestingly, the author of Hebrews uses a very different construction (εἰ γὰρ…οὐκ) in 4:8 to create a past contrary-to-fact condition. A clear example employing εἰ μέν can be found in 11:15 where an aorist verb is used.

1.2 Hermeneutics in Hebrews 7:1 – 28

25

is described in an essentially historical narrative) but it fails to take into account the concrete, historical attempt to ground the significance of Melchizedek in vv.4– 10. It is likely, then, that the author of Hebrews intends to invoke an historical comparison between something old and something that emerged subsequently, with the intention of employing this historical relationship to determine in what sense the later text affects the earlier. The mode in which Ps 110:4 is cited in Heb 5:6 appears to lend support to the idea that the Psalm is regarded by the author as originating later than the biblical material of the past which establishes the Levitical priesthood.⁶³ In Heb 5:6 it is cited as the present tense speech of God whilst Ps 2:7 is cited as the aorist speech of God. However, it is possible that both citations are regarded as aorist, with the aorist participle of Heb 5:5 governing what appears to be present speech in 5:6. Yet, as Ellingworth points out, it is Heb 7:18 – 19 and 28 that make the historical interpretation of 7:11 most plausible.⁶⁴ Ἔτι may be purely logical…, but in view of the author’s later insistence on temporal sequence (vv.18, “former commandment”; 28, “later than the law”), a temporal element cannot be excluded.⁶⁵

In these verses the historical distinction between the distant past of the institution of the Levitical priesthood and the later past of the oath of Ps 110:4 is presented with greater clarity. In Heb 7:18 – 19 the προαγούσης ἐντολῆς instituting

 That the author of Hebrews regards the institution of the Levitical priesthood as a scriptural event is almost certain (see the use of προαγούσης ἐντολῆς in Heb 7:19). Marie Isaacs, ‘Priesthood and the Epistle to the Hebrews,’ HeyJ 38:1 (1997), p. 55 also notes that ‘far from denigrating Israel’s cult, its argument is dependent upon an acceptance of its divinely ordained purpose – to gain access to the presence of God.’ However, the author seems keen not to identify the Levitical law too closely with the will of God, preferring to refer to it as ‘law’ in contrast with ὁ λόγος…τῆς ὁρκωμοσίας (7:28) and emphasising its origins in the proclamation of angels (cf. Gal 3:19) in contrast with the more recent speech of the Lord (Heb 2:2– 3). Of course, Heb 5:6 is not the first reference to Ps 110, merely the first reference to Ps 110:4. Ps 110:1 is quoted in part in Heb 1:13 and its treatment is extremely provocative. The quotation is cited as the direct speech of God to the son, making the Christological interpretation of Ps 110:4 in Heb 7 seem inevitable. However, one cannot assume that the author of Hebrews understood Ps 110:1 and 4 as belonging to the same Psalm (see the discussion above on the use of testimonia collections in Hebrews) especially as the author is willing to offer more extensive quotations of other texts of perhaps lesser importance to his central priestly argument, such as Ps 95:7– 11 and Jer 31:31– 34. Cf. Erich Grässer, An die Hebräer: Hebr 7,1 – 10,18 (EKK; Zürich: Benziger/Neukirchener, 1990), p. 37.  The issue of whether or not Heb 7:18 – 19 refers to Christ or Ps 110:4 as the ‘better hope’ which replaces the law will be discussed below.  Ellingworth, Hebrews, p. 372.

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Chapter 1: Historical Exegesis in the Epistle to the Hebrews

the Levitical priesthood is criticised as ἀσθενὲς καὶ ἀνωφελές. This clause is paraphrased in the next as means of explanation: οὐδὲν γὰρ ἐτελείωσεν ὁ νόμος. Likewise, Heb 7:28 articulates the historical contrast between the law which appointed Levitical priests and the later oath appointing Jesus as a priest after the order of Melchizedek by describing Ps 110:4 as being μετὰ τὸν νόμον.⁶⁶ These verses bear a structural similarity to 7:11 and, as Ellingworth seems to suggest, can be understood as sharing the same contrastive purpose as 7:11.⁶⁷ One could easily claim that these verses provide something of an answer to the rhetorical question of 7:11 as the distant past versus later past tension is reiterated in the indicative mood.⁶⁸ Each verse begins by referring to the past status of the Levitical priesthood (in 7:11, this is done using the imperfect ἦν) before describing the subsequent challenge or correction provided by the priest of the order of Melchizedek in Ps 110:4.⁶⁹ The case for historical contrast in 7:11 becomes stronger when one considers the quite developed sense of Heilsgeschichte in Hebrews.⁷⁰ This is something, as is argued below, upon which the ‘historical’ arguments of Hebrews depend and is a concept which comes to full expression in Heb 11, as Israel’s faithful ones are paraded in historical sequence, culminating in Christ as the supreme example of faith in Heb 12:1– 3. As will be seen below, the author of Hebrews takes the past  Hay, Glory at the Right Hand, p. 148. ‘In 7.28 the phrase “the word of the oath, which came later than the law” must refer to Ps110:4.’  Cf. Gordon, Hebrews, p. 88 ‘This form of argument is familiar in Hebrews (cf. 7:11; 8:7, 13); it is the principle of ‘abolishing the first in order to establish the second’.  Ibid., p. 85 ‘This phase of the argument is regarded as settled by vv.18 – 19 where bold statement (‘the law made nothing perfect’, v.19) answers per inclusion to the hypothetical condition of v.11 (‘if perfection had been attainable.’ It is significant that 7:11, 18 – 19 and 28 all make use of forms of τελείωσις. There is a pattern of transition between these verses in their use of τελείωσις: in 7:11 it is presented as something (at least theoretically) uncertain due to belonging in a question, in v.18 it is clearly presented as something that definitely was not achieved by the Levitical priesthood and finally in v.28 it refers to the Son, who has himself been ‘made perfect’.  As Stefan Nordgaard Svendsen, Allegory Transformed: The Appropriation of Philonic Hermeneutics in the Letter to the Hebrews (WUNT II 269; Tübingen: Mohr Siebeck, 2009), p. 152 points out, it does not necessarily follow that the introduction of a new priesthood implies the end of the old, yet Svendsen also notes how important this assumption of superannuation is in Hebrews. The author can hardly urge his readers not to return to their probable former trust in the law and the temple as these are still valid means of access to God.  Cf. Hays, ‘“No Lasting City”’, p. 165 ‘What I have called the argument from sequence is frequently invoked by the author of Hebrews. This suggests both an alertness to the narrative order of Israel’s Scripture and a conviction that God’s purpose has a sequential, linear logic to it; the most recent revelation “in these last days” is fuller and more comprehensive than what was revealed in former times.’

1.2 Hermeneutics in Hebrews 7:1 – 28

27

seriously as something of a process or pilgrimage to a definite telos. Because of this, he is able to plot events, characters and texts onto specific places in this process and so determine how they relate to each other. This sense of Heilsgeschichte is both evidence for 7:11 as provoking an historical contrast as well as being an explanation of how Hebrews is able to offer just such a contrast. As Lane writes: The argument from context that the word of the oath came subsequent to promulgation of the law (v 28) preserves the redemptive-historical perspective so important to typological exegesis. The writer clearly recognises the validity of the OT priesthood: Aaron was called by God (5:4), but from the perspective of the event of Christ only as a foreshadowing of a new and superior priesthood announced in the OT itself. The fulfilment of the oracle in the Christ event demonstrates the superiority of the new arrangement over the old.⁷¹

However, it is not entirely clear that the use of Melchizedek here is typological.⁷² The reference to and reflection upon the Melchizedek reference in Gen 14 seems to be connected to the exegetical task of understanding the messianic text Ps 110. It is not that the very person of Melchizedek in his own time pointed forward to the future reality of Christ, rather he offers an image of the kind of priest the Christ would be. The biblical account of Melchizedek is not, then, establishing a type, but is rather illustrating Ps 110:4, answering the question: what does it mean for the Messiah to be a priest after the order of Melchizedek? Moreover, no typological language is employed, which is significant since the author of Hebrews is quite capable of using such language⁷³ and the salvation-historical relationship between Melchizedek and Christ is not emphasised as one would expect.⁷⁴ The primary historical relationship within which Melchizedek is under-

 Lane, Hebrews, p. 177.  Ellingworth, Hebrews, p. 357 ‘There is no attempt at this stage to develop a parallel between Melchizedek and Christ. Even later, the author’s main concern will be with the contrast between Melchizedek and Christ on the one hand, and Abraham and his Levitical descendents on the other; positive comparison between Melchizedek and Christ will be limited to the repetition of the formula κατὰ τὴν τάξιν Μελχισέδεκ, understood as “like Melchizedek,” and the converse equivalent of ἀφωμοιωμένος δὲ τῷ υίῷ τοῦ θεοῦ.’ Cf. Hay, Glory at the Right Hand, p153.  E.g 9:9 and 10:1  It could be argued that Heb 7:3: ἀφωμοιωμένος δὲ τῷ υίῷ τοῦ θεοῦ establishes just such a relationship, yet the resemblance between Melchizedek and the Son of God is too close for this kind of typology in Hebrews. The author of Hebrews typically posits the historical antitype in more negative terms than its eschatological fulfilment. For example, in Heb 8:5, the historically idealised tabernacle is described as both ὑποδείγματι καὶ σκιᾷ of the eschatological heavenly tabernacle in which Christ is said to offer a sacrifice of his own blood. It is more likely that

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Chapter 1: Historical Exegesis in the Epistle to the Hebrews

stood is that between Ps 110:4, where he is mentioned, and the προαγούσης ἐντολῆς which instituted the Levitical priesthood. Though Hebrews 7 does not establish a typological relationship between these two figures, it is likely that the argument here depends upon a typological relationship between Gen 14 and Ps 110:4, a relationship which is exploited by the author to explain Ps 110:4 as he explores the Genesis Melchizedek the Psalmist probably saw as a type of his Davidic king.⁷⁵ So the divine utterance of Ps 110:4, occurring at a later point in history than the Law, causes the law to be changed, insofar as it provides a Priestly cult to deal with the problem of sin. Μετατιθεμένης γὰρ τῆς ἰερωσύνης ἐξ ἀνάγκης καὶ νόμου μετάθεσις γίνεται (Heb 7:12). It is important to note that Ps 110:4 brings about a change in priesthood and a change in the law, but not the end of the law.⁷⁶ The relationship between the past and the present in Hebrews is not one of disjuncture, rather one of continuity and progress towards a God-given end.⁷⁷ In Heb 7:13 – 16, the observations about Melchizedek in vv.1– 10 (specifically that he is ἀγενεαλόγητος, μήτε ἀρχὴν ἠμερῶν μήτε ζωῆς τέλος ἔχων) are confirmed as the facts of Jesus’ life are described. Ps 110:4 can be seen to refer to Jesus since the expected priest κατὰ τὴν τάξιν Μελχισέδεκ looks very much like Jesus. The use of quod non in Thora, non in mundo suggested that Melchizedek was without priestly family and did not die, likewise, according to teaching about Jesus which must have been well known, Jesus was descended from Judah εἰς ἣν φυλὴν περὶ ἱερέων οὐδὲν Μωϋσῆς ἐλάησεν and became a priest κατὰ

Melchizedek simply functions adjectivally, as a description of the ontological priestly status of the son.  A typological history clearly outlined in Chad L. Bird, ‘Typological Interpretation within the Old Testament: Melchizedek Typology,’ CJ 26:1 (2000), pp. 42 f and 46, though Bird considers Heb 7:1– 10 also to be typological. However, it may be important to note the strand of Rabbinic commentary in which Ps 110:4 is not an example of typology. In b. Ned. 32b R. Ishmael reads Ps 110 as rejecting Melchizedek on the basis of Melchizedek’s decision to bless Abraham before blessing God in Gen 14:18. It is therefore Abraham, whom R. Ishmael takes to be the addressee of Ps 110 who replaces Melchizedek as ‫כהן לעולע‬. Because of this, it is possible to see Melchizedek as a negative figure, rather than a celebrated type of the Messiah. See the interesting discussion of this text’s relation to Hebrews in Jacob J. Petuchowski, ‘The Controversial Figure of Melchizedek,’ HUCA 28 (1956), pp. 127– 136. See also M. McNamara, ‘Melchizedek: Genesis 14,18 – 20 in the Targums, in Rabbinic and Early Christian Literature,’ Bib 81:1 (2000), pp. 16 – 17  Joslin, Christ and the Law, pp. 133 and 143, argues this point persuasively, noting that even priesthood as an economic category is continued. Cf. Caird, ‘Exegetical Method’, p. 44.  One might argue that the emergence of the Son in Hebrews gives to the ἔσχατον a sense of priority over the past. However, as Smillie, ‘Contrast or Continuity’, pp. 543 – 551 points out, the important verses on Hebrews’ view of the stages of history, Heb 1:1– 2 contain no contrastive particles as would suggest the superiority of the present over the past.

1.2 Hermeneutics in Hebrews 7:1 – 28

29

δύναμιν ζωῆς ἀκαταλύτου.⁷⁸ This description of the facts of Jesus’ life which relate to the description of Melchizedek offered in Heb 7:3 – 10 makes the referent of Heb 7:18 – 19 less than obvious. What or who is it that introduces a κρείττονος ἐλπίδος δι’ ἦς ἐγγίζομεν τῷ θεῷ in v.19? Is it Jesus or Ps 110:4? At this point there seems to be little scholarly consensus and both interpretations seem possible.⁷⁹ However, as Moffatt suggests, the importance of God’s pronouncement and his oath appointing Christ to his priesthood, both in the psalm excerpt in v.17 as well as in vv.20 – 21, seem to suggest that the moment of God’s speech, his appointment of Christ as priest, introduces the κρείττονος ἐλπίδος.⁸⁰ Furthermore, it is the oath of Ps 110:4 in Heb 7:22 which makes Jesus a source of hope as the ‘guarantor of a better (κρείττονος) covenant.’ The author continues in Heb 7:22– 25 to comment on what Ps 110:4 claims for the priesthood of Jesus κατὰ τὴν τάξιν Μελχισέδεκ as he contrasts the eternity of Christ, established in Heb 7:3 and 7:16, with the Levitical priests who τὸ θανάτῳ κωλύεσθαι παραμένειν. It is after this

 The basis of this ζωῆς ἀκαταλύτου is unclear. Walter Edward Brookes, ‘The Perpetuity of Christ’s Sacrifice in the Epistle to the Hebrews,’ JBL 89:2 (1970), p. 207 argues that it refers to a status achieved through the resurrection, reading Heb 5:4– 6 in this light. Thus it is the resurrection which ultimately qualifies Christ for priesthood. However, this attractive suggestion is likely to be wrong on at least three counts: Firstly. Hebrews does not refer to the resurrection and seems to demonstrate little interest in it as an event in the life of Christ. Secondly, the priesthood of Christ is seen to determine his role prior to the resurrection and not merely in such a way as to provide qualifications for priesthood (as may be the case in Heb 2:17– 18 and 5:7– 9). This can be seen in Heb 10:5 – 10, in which Ps 40:6– 8 in its specific Old Greek form is employed to show that the incarnation was governed by the priestly motives of Christ. Finally, it seems unlikely that the resurrection is the basis of Christ’s eternal life in Hebrews when the use of Ps 102:25 – 27 appears to refer divinity and a role in creation to Christ and the introductory formula διὸ εἰσερχόμενος εἰς τὸν κόσμον λέγει in Heb 10:5 suggests a life prior to the incarnation. Cf. Westcott, Hebrews, p. 311, Ellingworth, Hebrews, p. 499 and Attridge, Hebrews, p. 273. Though Attridge notes that this phrase can simply refer to birth without connotations of pre-existence as it does in b. Yeb. 77a (‫)בוש לעלם‬, he concludes that the phrase has the same sense that it has in John’s Gospel (Jn 1:9, 6:14 and 11:27).  Westcott, Hebrews, p. 189, Attridge, Hebrews, p. 204, Ellingworth, Hebrews, p. 382 and Lane, Hebrews, p. 186 all associate this verse with Christ as κρείττονος ἐλπίδος without giving detailed reasons for this interpretation. Moffatt, Hebrews, p. 98 and Joslin, Christ and the Law, p. 150, likewise, suggest that the verse relates to the declaration of Ps 110:4. Hay, Glory at the Right Hand, p. 148 notes that the very similar statement in Heb 7:28 refers to Ps 110:4 but significantly does not claim this for 7:19. The suggestion of Gordon, Hebrews, p. 85 that Heb 7:19 ought to be seen to answer Heb 7:11 as a ‘bold statement’ suggests that Ps 110:4 introduces the ‘better hope’ though Gordon does not make this explicit.  Moffatt, Hebrews, p. 98, though it must be noted that Moffatt considers the phrase κρείττονος ἐλπίδος to have multiple referents to both Christ and Ps 110:4.

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Chapter 1: Historical Exegesis in the Epistle to the Hebrews

point that the detailed treatment of Ps 110:4 ends and arguments that appear to be unconnected to that text are introduced. So how does the author of Hebrews’ concern for history affect the reading of Ps 110:4? Ps 110 becomes, due to its historical situation as a later text than those instituting the Levitical priesthood becomes the means by which that priesthood can be understood to be superannuated: annulled or set aside.⁸¹ Because Ps 110 has been located in an historical period μετὰ τὸν νόμον the author is able to interpret the text not only as describing a type of priesthood which might be seen to challenge the Levitical priesthood (as this would not be possible if Ps 110 were thought to belong to the same period as the law: it would be assumed then that the two priesthoods must be compatible) but as a later text, introducing a replacement priesthood. As history moves forwards towards its ultimate goal, the more recent activity and speech of God overwhelms any value in what has taken place before. The idea of priesthood κατὰ τὴν τάξιν Μελχισέδεκ in Ps 110:4 needs to be taken seriously because it represents, because of its time of origin, something that points towards a better priesthood than the Levitical priesthood. This is utterly at odds with the attitude of much of intertestamental Judaism towards the Levitical priesthood,⁸² and is a conclusion that is largely due to the historical sense in which Ps 110:4 can be viewed as an oracular replacement of the commands that established that priesthood. Though the author does not demonstrate a sophisticated understanding of this, it is clear that the historical setting (that is its dating after the pentateuchal προαγούσης ἐντολῆς) is decisive in the interpretation of Ps 110:4 as a text that sets out to replace the Levitical system. This type of supersession in history is a common feature of Hebrews’ theology of the past as something old invariably gives way to something later. For example, in a manner which bears a striking similarity to Heb 7:11, Heb 8:7 states of the old and new covenants: Εἰ γαρ ἡ πρώτη ἐκείνη ἦν ἄμεμπτος, οὐκ ἂν δευτέρας ἐξητεῖτο τόπος.⁸³ The conviction suggested in Heb 7:11 and 18 – 19

 Schmitt, Mary, ‘Restructuring Views on Law in Hebrews 7:12,’ JBL 128:1 (2009), p. 193 makes a persuasive case for regarding νόμος in 7:12 as referring to a written scriptural text on the basis of its use in 7:5.  E.g. Jubilees 13:25. Cf. Lane, Hebrews, p. 160, for a more positive discussion of Levitical priesthood also related to Gen 14 and Hay, Glory at the Right Hand, p. 136.  Attridge, Hebrews, p. 226 and Ellingworth, Hebrews, p. 411 who regards Heb 8:7 as ‘mild by comparison’ with Heb 7:11. Moffatt, Hebrews, p. 107 describes Heb 8:7 in terms which are similar to what has been argued in this chapter regarding Heb 7:11. ‘The superiority of the new διαθήκη is shown by the fact that God thereby superseded the διαθήκη with which the Levitical cultus was bound up; the writer quotes an oracle from Jeremiah, again laying stress on the fact that it came after the older διαθήκη (vv.7-18), and enumerating its promises as contained in a new διαθήκη.’

1.2 Hermeneutics in Hebrews 7:1 – 28

31

that the occasion of a new text, a new divine pronouncement, on a matter ends the authority and validity of earlier texts is also demonstrated in Heb 8:13 after the substantial quotation from Jer 31:31– 34. Ἐν τῷ λέγειν καινὴν πεπαλαίωκεν τὴν πρώτην.⁸⁴ The same comment is made regarding the meaning of Ps 40:6 – 10 in Heb 10:9: ἀναιρεῖ τὸ πρῶτον ἵνα τὸ δεύτερον στήσῃ. Whilst the author of Hebrews does not seek to place texts in their original historical settings, the approximate dating of a scriptural text is of significant value to his exegesis. It is the date of the historical origin of a text which makes possible its interpretation as something which has continuing validity, superseding an older tradition, or else suggests that the text itself has been superseded. History determines a text’s relation to other texts and so is seen as an essential factor in biblical interpretation by the author of Hebrews. This subservience of the old to the new (or, in this case, to the less old) is unlikely to be behind the historical argument in Heb 4:6 – 10. In the interpretation of Ps 95:7– 11 the authorial situation of that text is of utmost significance. Whilst the preposition μετὰ is employed twice in Heb 4:7– 8, as it is once in Heb 7:28 to denote historical difference, it is an historical event which is contrasted with a later text, rather than an earlier text contrasted with a later text. In Hebrew 4:6 – 10 no ancient text is being replaced or supplemented, rather the author uses the historical setting of Ps 95 to dismiss what he sees as an incorrect interpretation of that text. No special authority is claimed for Ps 95 on the basis of its date of origin. It is David’s situation that is of primary importance for the author’s argument: ‘If Joshua had provided rest for the people of God by granting access to the land, why does David speak from the land as though rest is still to come?’ The author of Hebrews, then, appears to employ three modes of historical reasoning. One basic form similar to ‫ פתר‬exegesis in rabbinic literature which describes the narrative biblical history to which the text might refer is used in Heb 3:14– 19 and 7:3 – 10. Another form, attested in Heb 4:6 – 10, uses the assumed historical setting of a text to dissolve a problematic idea in that text. The last, seen in Heb 7:11, 19, 28 and 8:13 places texts into an historical order in order to determine how they are to relate to each other, with the later text having priority.

 It is clear that in these verses πρώτη has a temporal sense, rather than indicating superiority, as in Col 1:18. Cf. Hughes, Hermeneutics, p. 45 and Ellingworth, Hebrews, p. 411.

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Chapter 1: Historical Exegesis in the Epistle to the Hebrews

1.2.4 Heb 7:26 – 28: Summary of the Christological implications of Ps 110:4. The final verses of Heb 7 serve to summarise the conclusions drawn about the priesthood of Christ from the discussion of Ps 110:4, and from assertions prior to it, and to relate those conclusions to the needs of the audience: τοιοῦτος γὰρ ἡμῖν καὶ ἔπρεπεν ἀρχιερεύς. Ps 110:4 was employed to demonstrate the superiority of Christ over the Levitical priesthood. This notion of superiority is expanded as the sinlessness of Christ, as mentioned in Heb 4:15, is related to his priesthood. The comparison of the two priesthoods also points forwards to an argument yet to come in Hebrews: that the single sacrifice of Christ does what the multiple sacrifices of the Levitical cult could not (cf. Heb 10:1– 4 and 11– 12). It is significant that this summary is concluded with a statement reflecting the historical argument employed to interpret Ps 110:4: that Christ is the Melchizedek priest of Ps 110:4, a text which by its dating μετὰ τὸν νόμον superannuates the Levitical priesthood.

1.3 Hebrews’ distinctive use of history. It is argued below that the use of assumptions concerning a text’s author or historical setting to explicate the meaning of that text is unusual, perhaps unparalleled, in Christian and Jewish antiquity outside the New Testament writings.⁸⁵ It is suggested that such uniqueness is indebted to the particular theological worldview of the author of Hebrews, in particular, his understanding of history. Yet before such dependence can be claimed, the literature which is often cited as influencing the hermeneutics of Hebrews must be explored. A mode of historical reasoning in hermeneutics that reflects an authentically Christian theological understanding of the world could provide a stimulus to contemporary discussions of theological hermeneutics. If the argument of Hebrews 4:6 – 10 is seen instead to be dependent on a contemporary school of thought or practice, then it is unlikely to rely on the author’s account of history in the same way and so may have less to offer as a Christian approach to historical hermeneutics.

 Trypho 34, through its moral argument that Ps 72 cannot refer to Solomon (its supposed historic referent) has an element of similarity, as does 1 Clem 47, which cites Paul’s context in writing his Corinthian correspondence as the basis for reading his letters.

1.3 Hebrews’ distinctive use of history.

33

1.3.1 Philo There is much in Hebrews to commend the idea that the author has borrowed terminology and exegetical practice from Philo, though it will be suggested that Philo represents the least probable background to the arguments of Heb 4:6 – 10 and 7:11– 19. C. Spicq presents the most sustained argument for Hebrews’ dependence on Philo’s hermeneutical method.⁸⁶ He presents a particularly strong case regarding the similarity of Heb 7:2 and Leg. All. 3:79. Both comment on Gen 14:18, both employ forms of the verb ἑρμηνεύω (the only occurrence of the term in the New Testament, according to Spicq), both concentrate on the figure of Melchizedek, about whom both employ etymological description featuring the same terms, and concerning whom both perform allegorical interpretation.⁸⁷ Whilst the dependence of Heb 7 on Philo cannot be seriously disputed,⁸⁸ there is little evidence for hermeneutical similarity throughout the rest of Hebrews, or indeed in the rest of the Melchizedek argument of Heb 7.⁸⁹ Ronald Williamson cites

 Though Moffatt, Hebrews, also makes a sustained claim for Philonic influence in pp.xxxi, xxxiii & 53 etc. Cf. Svendsen, Allegory Transformed, p. 147. An essential element in Svendsen’s thesis is that the author of Hebrews adopts and modifies Philo’s conception of the logos and applies it to Christ. It is significant that Philo’s treatment of Melchizedek is an allegorical platform for reflection upon the logos in just such a way as one might consider Hebrews’ treatment of Melchizedek to relate to Christology.  C. Spicq, L’Epitre aux Hebreux vol 1 (Paris Libraire: Lecoffre, 1952), p. 60. However, George Caird writes of the author: ‘He carries us back to the story of Genesis 14 not to compose a fanciful and allegorical midrash on that chapter after the manner of Philo, but rather because he wishes to answer the question: “what did the words ‘priest for ever after the order of Melchizedek’ mean to the psalmist who wrote them?”’ George B. Caird, ‘The Exegetical Method of the Epistle to the Hebrews,’ CJT 5:1 (1959), p. 48. However, similarity is not dependent upon the presence of allegory. James W. Thompson, ‘The Conceptual Background and Function of the Midrash in Hebrews VII,’ NovT 19:3 (1977), pp. 209 – 223 examines the use of terms employed in Heb 7 and in Philo, such as ἀμήτηρ and ἀπάτορα, as well as the use of the exegetical rule quod non in Thora, non in mundo, suggesting that Hebrews demonstrates a significant degree of dependence upon Philo. However, whilst there does seem to be a basic degree of similarity in the use of these terms, it is clear that for Philo they have a much more overt Platonic sense than in Hebrews. This is perhaps particularly the case regarding Thompson’s understanding of how σαρκίνης is used in Heb 7:16 (p. 218) which emphasises an hostility to σάρξ that is hard to set alongside the author of Hebrews’ insistence on the positive value of Jesus’ life in the ‘flesh,’ cf. Heb 2:14 and 5:7.  Though Ellingworth, Hebrews, p. 353 argues for a hymnic source for Heb 7:1– 10 and provides a brilliant possible reconstruction of such a source.  This, of course, is vigorously denied by Svendsen, Allegory Transformed, who regards Philo as a dominant influence upon Hebrews. Certainly, much of Hebrews’ theology, and particularly its theological terminology, appears Philonic. However, it is not so clear that Philo exerts a significant influence over the exegetical techniques employed in Hebrews. For example, when

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Chapter 1: Historical Exegesis in the Epistle to the Hebrews

three areas of difference that are particularly problematic for those who maintain such dependence on Philo: the range of texts employed by each author; the modes of citation and the methods of interpretation. As noted above, the citations in Hebrews come mainly from the Psalter, whilst whole groups of scriptural material are ignored, whereas Philo uses texts from every part of the canon but has a strong preference for the Pentateuch.⁹⁰ Likewise, whilst Philo has a relatively uniform mode of citation, referring to the supposed authors of the cited text, Hebrews places the citations on the lips of a range of divine figures.⁹¹ Finally, Hebrews employs a Christological method of interpretation with a mostly eschatological focus, using allegory only once, whilst Philo uses allegorical interpretation almost exclusively.⁹² The eschatological tendency of Hebrews’ interpretation of scripture had been cited already by Westcott against Philonic influence when he claimed that the author of Hebrews did not regard ‘Jewish ordinances…as [Philonic] symbols of transcendent ideas, but elements in a preparatory discipline for a divine manifestation upon earth.’⁹³ This lack of similarity is particularly evident when one looks for arguments in Philo that correspond to the use of history in Heb 4:6 – 10. In Hypoth. 6:5, Philo claims that λογισμός provides a better resource than ἱστορία for understanding Israel’s biblical invasion of Canaan, whilst in Vit. Cont. 24 he asserts that the biblical account of Abraham at the oaks of Mamre acts as a symbol to be received τῶν διανοίᾳ μόνῃ. Moreover, Philo appears to despise the physicality of the Hebrew Scriptures. In de. Plant. 7, Philo expresses revulsion towards the idea of God planting a garden in Gen 2:8. Because of this, in chapter 9, Philo urges the reader to approach this text allegorically, employing a method τὴν ὀρατικοῖς φίλην ἀνδράσι.⁹⁴ Yet Philo argues that such an approach is itself asked for by the

Svendson discusses the author’s treatment of Ps 95:7– 11, he argues persuasively that the idea of Sabbath as a participation in God’s ἀνάπαυσις is philonic, seen most clearly in Cher. 86 – 93. However, the exegetical argument the author uses to arrive at this conclusion is anything but allegorical, rather it is widely regarded as a clear example of gezerah shewah. Moreover, philonic influence cannot account for the argument involving Davidic authorship which Svendsen passes over with little comment (p. 118).  Ronald Williamson, Philo and the Epistle to the Hebrews (Leiden: Brill, 1970), p. 503.  Ibid., p. 514.  Ibid., pp. 532 & 538.  Westcott, Hebrews, p.lxi.  S. K. Wan, ‘Charismatic Exegesis: Philo and Paul Compared,’ SPA 6 (1994), p. 54 demonstrates that Philo employs ‘charismatic exegesis’, a way of reading that invests the reader with special authority and the ability to allegorically determine the ‘real meaning’ of a text. At no point does the author of Hebrews claim to be this kind of interpreter, and certainly not in Heb 3 – 4 where he is keen to demonstrate his reasoning, rather than his intuition.

1.3 Hebrews’ distinctive use of history.

35

text, which uses figurative language, such as ‘tree of life’. At one point in Vit. Mos. 1.11, Philo does demonstrate an interest in material history, as he explains Jacob’s migration to Egypt as being due to the fertility caused by the flooding of the Nile. However, whilst this is related to a biblical event, it is not an argument that is used to explicate a specific scriptural text. Perhaps the closest Philo comes to explaining Scripture in relation to its contingency upon history is Vit. Mos. 2.291 which explains how Moses was able to be responsible for the narrative of his own death at the end of Deuteronomy. This is an unusual passage, perhaps forced upon Philo by the need to explain how the text might be Mosaic whilst describing Moses’ death. However, even though the historical occasion of revelation (as one would describe it in Qur’ānnic scholarship⁹⁵) is recorded, Philo makes no attempt to use this occasion to interpret the text: Dt 34.

1.3.2 Qumran James Thompson notes that Hebrews’ practice of contemporising scriptural texts is similar to the tendency of ‫ פשר‬exegesis in qumranic literature.⁹⁶ One can also see a similarity to Hebrews 3:1– 4:13 in the way that ‫ פשר‬texts often provide sustained treatment of a particular text, for example in 1QpHab. However, this is perhaps where the similarity ends.⁹⁷ There is significant difference in the modes of excerpt citation in ‫ פשר‬and Hebrews. ‫ פשר‬tends to be more formulaic, moving straight from lemma to interpretation using set phrases such as …‫ פשרו‬and ‫…פשר הדבר‬.‫ פשר‬interpretation is primarily concerned with the eschatological value of a text for the community.⁹⁸ Eschatological tension is a significant feature of the community’s identity, partic-

 For a bibliographical introduction see Andrew Rippin, ‘The exegetical genre asbāb al-nuzūl: A bibiographical and terminological survey,’ BSOAS 48:1 (1985). Important primary literature includes Jalal al-Din Al-Suyūtī , Lubāb al-nuqūl fīq asbāb al-nuzūl and Alī ibn Ahmad al-Wāhidī, Kitāb asbāb al-nuzūl.  Thompson, Hermeneutics, p. 229. See also Enns, ‘Interpretation of Ps 95’, p. 352.  There may also be some similarity between the Qumranic practices of harmonisation and homogenisation of texts, seen particularly in 11QT (Jacob Milgrom, ‘Qumran’s Biblical Hermeneutics: The Case of the Wood Offering,’ RevQ 16:3 [1994], pp. 449 – 456) and the assumptions behind the use of gezerah shewah in Heb 4:3 – 5.  Maurya P. Horgan, Pesharim: Qumran Interpretations of Biblical Books (CBQMS 8; Washington: CBAA, 1979), p. 248.

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Chapter 1: Historical Exegesis in the Epistle to the Hebrews

ularly evident in texts such as 4QMa.⁹⁹ Eschatological reading contemporises the text in such a way that the text is not seen as having an historic context or meaning. Geza Vermes writes: As far as content is concerned, the pesher seeks to associate a biblical text, understood as prophecy, with a contemporary or near contemporary event wherever possible (and the commentators are very ingenious in finding such possibilities).¹⁰⁰

In the majority of cases, the cited text is referred to the present ¹⁰¹‫ אחרית הימים‬and to eschatological figures in the present, such as ‫איש הכזב‬.¹⁰² This is not the same as the author of Hebrews’ eschatological interpretation, which employs texts to point forwards rather than to illustrate the contemporary. ‫ פשר‬views current events as providing the hermeneutical key through which the true, eschatological meaning of the text is accessed. This is quite different from Hebrews, the setting of which in its own contemporary political and social situation is notoriously hard to reconstruct. Whilst qumranic literature often shows a real consciousness of history, as is the case in CD iii, this history is not seen as the setting for scriptural texts, out of which they must be understood.¹⁰³ As is noted above, Hebrews’ interest in Melchizedek bears little similarity to 11QMelch. This is particularly the case when one considers the way in which scriptural texts are used in 11QMelch, which is essentially a catena of texts with no stated historical relationship between them, mainly expounded by means of ‫פשר‬.

 This eschatological focus, in particular the eschatological imperative to correct behaviour, agrees with Philo’s stress upon the Essene’s ethical life, cf. Vit. Comp. 1 and Hypoth. 11:2. See also, 1QS.  Geza Vermes, ‘Bible Interpretation at Qumran,’ ErIsr 20 (1989), p. 188. See also, Shani Berrin, ‘Qumran Pesharim’ in Biblical Interpretation at Qumran (ed. Matthias Henze; Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2005), pp. 110 – 111 and Paul Mandel, ‘Midrashic Exegesis and its Precedents in the Dead Sea Scrolls,’ DSD 8:2 (2001), pp. 153 – 154. George J. Brooke, Exegesis at Qumran: 4QFlorilegium in its Jewish Context (JSOTSup 29; Sheffield: JSOT Press, 1985), p. 356 argues that something more closely resembling Rabbinic practice was more common than mere eschatological appropriation.  Annette Steudal, ‘ ‫ אחרית הימים‬in the Texts from Qumran,’ RevQ 16:2 (1993), p. 225 – 8. See also 4QFlor i.2 for an example outside ‫פשר‬.  4QpPsa 26 – 27.  4QpNah 3 – 4 refers the text to an historic personality, Manasseh. This is similar to the use of ‫ פתר‬in Gen Rab. See below.

1.3 Hebrews’ distinctive use of history.

37

1.3.3 Rabbinic literature Despite the difficulty of establishing rabbinic traditions dating back to the 1st Century, it is clear that rabbinic exegesis exerts a significant influence over the use of scriptural texts in Hebrews.¹⁰⁴ However, is it possible to find in rabbinic literature interpretation that features argument from the historical identity of a biblical author? There are, of course, types of rabbinic exegesis that employ a sense of history. In b. Tam. 32a, ‫ פתר‬is used as a verb of solving or answering a problem.¹⁰⁵ In b. Ber 55b the root is employed as a substantive participle to denote those who interpret dreams, the ‫פותרי חלומות‬.¹⁰⁶ The Joseph narratives in Genesis also use ‫ פתר‬to refer to dream interpretation (cf. Gen 40:5, 8, 12, 16, 18 etc.).¹⁰⁷ Yet in the haggadic literature, ‫ פתר‬is often employed to describe a type of historical exegesis, a reading that sees a text’s referent as another biblical event. This contrasts with the majority of halakic literature where the application of a text resides in the present sphere of appropriate action. For example, in Gen. Rab. 2:3, R. Judah interprets ‫ והארץ היתה תהו ובהו‬in Gen 1:2 as describing the history of Adam and Cain, whilst in Gen. Rab. 38:1 R. Leazar interprets Gen 9:1 as referring to the history of Doeg and Ahitophel in 2 Sam 16:21. This kind of historical interpretation cannot be seen to be operating in Heb 4:6 – 10, since history merely provides a reference for the text, rather than a means of extracting the promise of the text for the contemporary audience, though it does provide a plausible background for Heb 4:16 – 19 and 7:3 – 10.¹⁰⁸ The root ‫ פרש‬also repre-

 For example, Attridge, Hebrews, p. 25 points out that qal wahomer is used in Heb 1:4, 2:2– 3, 7:22, 9:14 and 12:9 – 11. There is little evidence to support Lane’s claim that Heb 4:7– 8 is an example of this middah. Lane, Hebrews, p.lxxi. It is almost certain, though, that Heb 7:4– 10 borrows the rabbinic rule quod non in Thora, non in mundo. See A.J. Bandstra, ‘Heilsgeschichte and Melchizedek in Hebrews,’ CTJ 3:1 (1969), p. 40. A helpful study of the contemporary state of discussion regarding the study of rabbinic literature in relation to the New Testament is offered by Gruden Holtz, ‘Rabbinische Literatur und Neues Testament: Alte Schwierigkeiten und neue Möglishkeiten,’ ZNW 100:2 (2009), pp. 173 – 198 who notes the significance of new developments such as the use of analogy and ‘kulturellen Codes’ concluding that ‘die Frage der Datierung rabbinischer Quellen veil von ihrer einstigen Brisanz verloren’ (p. 197).  b. Tam. 32a ‫אור נבוא תחלה או חשְך׃ אמרו לו מילתא דא אין לה פתר׃‬. Elsewhere the root appears as a proper noun, cf. b. Naz. 56b, ‫ ר׳ יהושע בן פתר ראש‬.  Michael Fishbane, Biblical Interpretation in Ancient Israel (Oxford: Clarendon, 1985), pp. 443 – 4.  See discussion in Isaac Rabinowitz, ‘Pesher/Pittaron: Its Biblical Meaning and its Significance in the Qumran Literature’, RevQ 8:2 (1973), pp. 219 – 232.  Though the relation of Ps 110:4 to Gen 14:18 – 20 and that of Ps 95:11 to Ex 17 or Nu 14 is much more obvious and are almost indisputably examples of intertextuality intended by the two psalmists.

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Chapter 1: Historical Exegesis in the Epistle to the Hebrews

sents a type of historical exegesis within Rabbinic literature. It is used in Sifre. Num. 112:3:1 where Num 15:27– 31, which describes penalties for unintentional offences, is explained with reference to Gen 30:14, the account of Rachel and Leah’s dispute over mandrakes. Yet this reference to history illustrates, rather than explicates, the text. The seventh of Hillel’s middoth in Tosf. Sanh. 7:11,¹⁰⁹ ‫דבר הלמד מענינו‬, was suggested by Longenecker as a possible influence on the argument of Heb 4:6 – 10 with little elaboration.¹¹⁰ Little is known of this rule, the use of which is not widely attested. There is attestation of other middah in the Talmud, such as when b. Pes. 66a makes use of gezerah shewah and qal wahomer (otherwise known as a minori ad maius) as does R. Eliezar in b. Sanh. 45b. But clear attestation of ‫ דבר הלמד מענינו‬is lacking. There is also little agreement regarding the meaning and etymology of ‫ענינו‬. Aboth d. R. Nathan 37:12 employs this middah to solve the problem that Ex 4:30 poses to the mishnaic statement that a man must not speak before his elder brother does by exploiting the context of the scriptural passage. Another possible example of ‫ דבר הלמד מענינו‬is related in b. Sanh. 90b as questioners of R. Gamaliel’s understanding of the resurrection argue against his interpretation of Isa 26:19, claiming that the text merely refers to those dead raised by Ezekiel. This is an argument from the context of the Isaiah passage which is read in the light of Ezekiel as another of the Latter Prophets. Perhaps the clearest example of the rule is found in b. Sanh. 86a, where the command ‫ לא תגנב‬in Ex 20:15 is interpreted as referring specifically to kidnapping (mentioned in Ex 21:16) to give the law a greater degree of consistency with the rest of the Decalogue’s commands, all of which incur the death penalty. So Longenecker is probably wrong in suggesting that this middah can be seen in Heb 4:6 – 10. The ‘context’ from which clarification of the text is derived is always textual.¹¹¹ The rule always seems to set the text under discussion in its literary and canonical setting, rather than an abstract historical setting. It does not seem to refer to authorial or socio-political context. It must also be noted that, as with the other middoth, ‫ דהר הלמד מענינו‬is primarily a tool for providing ethical guidance in public life, rather than explicating a text’s theology.¹¹² More generally, the rabbinic encouragement of polysemy¹¹³

 And common to other middoth lists. Philip S. Alexander, ‘The Rabbinic Hermeneutical Rules and the Problem of the Definition of Midrash,’ PIBA 8 (1984), 97– 115.  Richard Longenecker, Biblical Exegesis in the Apostolic Period (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1975), p. 182.  L. Jacobs, ‘Hermeneutics,’ EJ 8 (1971), p. 12.  Paul Mandel, ‘Scriptural Exegesis and the Pharisees in Josephus,’ JJS 43:1 (2007), p. 29.  On Rabbinic polysemy, see David Stern, ‘Midrash and Indeterminacy,’ CI 15:1 (1988), p. 132.

1.4 History in Hebrews

39

and the use of exegesis to extend the meaning of a biblical text is at odds with the arguments of Heb 4:3 – 10 and 7:11– 19 which are determinative. The author of Hebrews is keen to show that the meaning of κατάπαυσις has always been that of Gen 2:2 and that intended in the authorial time of David, since that is what is applied to the audience. Likewise, the very fact of the existence of a text which mentions a type of priesthood other than the Levitical priesthood, a text thought to have emerged at a later point in history than the Levitical priesthood ends any sense in which the Levitical priesthood is still necessary in the author’s view. Susan E. Docherty, whose significant monograph on the use of Scripture in Hebrews represents one of the most recent attempts to identify the exegetical practice of Hebrews with rabbinic convention, reaches this same conclusion in regard to the argument from the Davidic authorship of Ps 95. The author’s exegesis depends also on his employment of an argument from chronology in Heb 4:8 – 9, where he explains his view that ‘rest’ must mean ‘sabbath rest’, not ‘entry into the land of Canaan’, on the basis that the psalm promising rest as something in the future was spoken long after the wilderness period, when the Israelites were settled in the land (Heb 4:8). This interpretative technique…points to a difference between the New Testament and several other examples of early Jewish biblical exegesis, which on the whole display little interest in the historical background of scriptural passages. The rabbinic maxim: ‘There is no before or after in scripture’ is well known.¹¹⁴

Of course, even if a precise correlation could be demonstrated between a certain piece of rabbinic literature and the exegetical practice of the Hebrews passages discussed above, one would still not be able to say with any certainty that Hebrews employed a rabbinic tradition since the dating of rabbinic literature is so problematic. Even references within extant literature to earlier traditions are now regarded as being of dubious historicity.¹¹⁵

1.4 History in Hebrews Since it is likely that the arguments of Heb 4:6 – 10 and 7:11– 19 are not simply borrowed from elsewhere, it is necessary to consider the conceptual assumptions on which they depend, and which provide their operational basis. It will be sug-

 Docherty, Old Testament in Hebrews, p. 192.  Günter Stemberger, ‘Dating Rabbinic Traditions’, in The New Testament and Rabbinic Literature (ed. Reimund Bieringer, Florentino García Martínez, Didier Pollefeyt and Peter J. Tomson; SJSJ 136; Leiden: Brill, 2010), pp. 83 – 90. Cf. Holtz, ‘Rabbinische Literatur,’ p. 175.

40

Chapter 1: Historical Exegesis in the Epistle to the Hebrews

gested that these ‘historical’ arguments depend upon a theological account of history which in its particularity is unique to Hebrews. From an historical-critical perspective, it is very hard to find fault with the argument of Heb 4:6 – 10: the argument from Davidic authorship.¹¹⁶ Walter Kaiser suggests that Hebrews’ interpretation of Ps 95 as originally intended to refer to an eschatological rest (the availability of which exceeds that promised to the wilderness generation) is thoroughly consistent with Ps 95 in its probable context (reconstructed using the historical-critical method), beginning as it does with an ‘eschatological hymn of praise’ to YHWH.¹¹⁷ Whilst the author may be wrong to conclude that Ps 95 is by David, he is certainly acting in accordance with the aims of modern critical scholarship by asking what a later author could mean in relating the promise of κατάπαυσις to an audience who could be described as occupying the land of rest already.¹¹⁸ Yet the similarity ends with the type of historical question asked, for the understanding of history upon which the argument of Heb 4:6 – 10 depends is entirely different from that upon which the historical-critical method is based. Rest is understood in the context of salvation history, it is not simply historic or future, but diachronic with a permanent relevance through the broad sweep of time.¹¹⁹ This diachronicity can be seen in the succession of heroic characters of faith in chapter eleven.¹²⁰ Graham Hughes offers by far the most detailed account of how history is understood by the author.

 Cf. Daniel J. Treier, ‘Speech Acts, Hearing Hearts, and Other Senses: The Doctrine of Scripture Practised in Hebrews,’ in The Epistle to the Hebrews and Christian Theology (ed. Richard Bauckham, Daniel R. Driver, Trevor A. Hart and Nathan MacDonald; Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2009), p. 339. Though Attridge says ‘the appeal to “history” is admittedly a playful one,’ he does not explain why this is the case. Attridge, Hebrews, p. 24  Walter C. Kaiser, ‘The Promise Theme and Theology of Rest,’ BSac 130 (1973), pp. 139 & 146 – 7. See also Gerhard von Rad, p. 99 who points out that the σήμερον of the Greek psalm suggests that Hebrews’ eschatological reading is appropriate, as well as Buchanan, p. 73.  Longenecker, Biblical Exegesis, pp. 181– 182.  H. A. Lombard, ‘Καταπαυσις in the Letter to the Hebrews,’ Neot 5 (1971), pp. 60 – 61. Cf. Hermut Löhr, ‘Geschichtliches Denken im Hebräerbrief,’ in Heil und Geschichte: Die Geschichtsbezogenheit des Heils und das Problem der Heilsgeschichte in der biblischen Tradition und in der theologischen Deutung (ed. Jörg Frey, Stefan Krauter and Hermann Lichtenberger; WUNT 248; Tübingen: Mohr Siebeck, 2009), pp. 446 – 447.  However, James W. Thompson, The Beginnings of Christian Philosophy: The Epistle to the Hebrews (CBQMS 13; Washington: CBAA, 1982), pp. 54– 55 & 57– 58, claims that this passage is far from distinctive, as he compares this passage with Philo’s de Mig Abr, arguing that both view the pilgrimage of faithful living as flight from transitory materiality, particularly associated with the body, towards the spiritual presence of God, through πίστις, which he understands as close to νοῆσαι, from a reading of the corpus Hermeticum and Tim 37C. Using this approach, he goes

1.4 History in Hebrews

41

History is conceived of as that order of existence which, being bound by temporal limits, is measurable and thus definable. Its finitude and direction define it over against God and his unbounded mode of existence by being what he is not and not being what he is. In that it has a beginning and an end it has the nature of movement and thereby of flux and change. But in that its goals are established from outside or above history itself, the movement is not a random or meaningless one, but purposive, it has not just movement but direction.¹²¹

This vision of history gives an undeniable status to created time. It is not a random series of events but a process, leading to a certain telos. ¹²² This enables the

on to argue that κόσμος is used negatively to contrast the pilgrim, Noah, with the material world, as in Philo’s Leg All 1:108 There are many problems with Thompson’s approach, though he is certainly right to dwell on the essential dualism between the world of experience and the world in which faith trusts. Leg All 1:108 and de Mig Abr 9 both seem to make much of the body as representing the problem of materiality (E.g. Leg All 1:108 ώς νῦν μέν, ὅτε ζῶμεν, τεθνηκυίας τῆς ψυχῆς καὶ ώς ἂν ἐν σήματι τῷ σώματι ἐντετυμβευμένης and der Mig Abr 9 ἄπελθε οὐν …ὠ ούτος, ἐκφυγών δεσμωτήριον). It is notable that the word σῶμα does not appear at all in 11:1– 12:3. Nor is there any sense in which the reality for which pilgrims strive lacks materiality. Whilst, in 11:16, this reality is referred to as ἐπουρανίου, there is no indication that ‘heavenly’ suggests a lack of materiality.  Hughes, Hermeneutics, pp. 39 – 40.  Albeit a process necessarily characterised by temptation, suffering and lamentation, precipitating the suffering and sympathetic priesthood of Christ. Ronald Williamson, ‘The Incarnation of the Logos in Hebrews,’ ExpTim 95 (1983), p. 7. Even if Hebrews’ had understood these sufferings as relating specifically to those of Christ, for which there is no evidence in Hebrews itself, it is clear that the author understood Christ’s death to be part of his sharing in humanity, thus his account of suffering, and in particular, death, could constitute part of his understanding of life in this creation from which salvation is needed. The nature of this interest in death suggests the influence of the Old Greek Bible, particularly the Old Greek Psalter, from which texts are readily employed in Hebrews (see the discussion above relating to the uses made of different types of biblical literature in Hebrews). It is clear from Ps 22 (a text which provides a crucial proof of Christ’s humanity in Heb 2:12) that death is the greatest problem for which the psalmist seeks help from God. After the death imagery of vv.15 – 19, the psalmist asks God μὴ μακρύνης τὴν βοήθειάν μου (v.20). There is also evidence to show that death is greatly feared in the psalm through the dramatic language used. This similarity with Hebrews at this point is striking when one considers that for Philo, the greatest evil of human existence is separation from God by attachment to the world of sense-perception, from which death liberates, ‘perfecting’ the soul (See Leg. All. 3:1 ὁ φαῦλος φυγάς ἐστιν, 3:11 μὴ τὸ θῆλυ αἰσθητὸν πάθος ἐφελκομένη and 3:45 διὸ καὶ Ἀαρὼν ὅταν τελευτᾷ, τουτ ἐστιν ὅταν τελιωθῇ, εἰς Ὤρ, ὅ ἐστι φῶς, ἀνέρχεται). Death is not seen by Philo as problematic, but rather as deliverance, whilst for Hebrews it is a problem for which God’s Son must die. The other problem encountered by humankind, seen in Heb 2:5 – 18, is the possibility of πειρασμός. This is something that is also part of Christ’s humanity, so that he might be able to help others who are subject to it (2:18). Hence, it is a clear part of what it means for Christ to share in ‘blood and flesh’(Heb 2:14) , being lower than the angels, as well as an experience of humanity in general.

42

Chapter 1: Historical Exegesis in the Epistle to the Hebrews

texts of history to have authority within their own setting, as products of the same kind of reality in which the author resides.¹²³ Moreover, it is history that provides continuity with the people of God who have gone before the audience of Hebrews as both groups share the experience of pilgrimage to the ultimate place of God’s salvation.¹²⁴ Both groups experience history as the sphere in which the fulfilment of God’s promises is awaited.¹²⁵ Because of this, the interpreter does not stand outside the history from which the text emerges, but stands in sympathetic continuity with it. This affirmation of the past is markedly different from Qumranic and rabbinic hermeneutics where the past is ignored and texts are received as though purely contemporary. In Hebrews, …historical distance is by no means collapsed in [the] use of the Old Testament. In fact, a sense of historical progression from the Exodus, to the settlement in the land, to the kingship and to the present is fundamental to the treatment of Psalm 95 and ‘the rest’ in Hebrews 3 – 4.¹²⁶

The sense of progression, of development, in Hebrews’ theology of history is essential for the argument of Heb 7:11. It is the linear progression and eschatological tendency of history which allows the superannuation or abrogation of the law relating to the Levitical priesthood by Ps 110:4. Because history includes a succession of events and people and scriptural texts can be plotted onto this succession, as Ps 95 is with David, scriptural texts are not seen as timeless and identical, revealing the unchanging mind of God, as they are for Philo, the Rabbis and Qumran. In addition to the unique sense of Heilsgeschichte in Hebrews, the difference that exists between the hermeneutics of Hebrews and those of other exegetes of antiquity can probably be accounted for, in part, by the rhetorical purpose of Hebrews, a text which offers a word that is δυσερμήνευτος (Heb 5:11) to an audience which probably disagrees with much that the author says. Because of this ten-

 Guy G. Stroumsa, ‘The Christian Hermeneutical Revolution and its Double Helix’ in The Uses of Sacred Books in the Ancient World, (ed. T. Baarda, A. van der Kooij and A. S. van der Woude; Leuven: Peiters, 1998), p. 13 argues that this hermeneutical ‘revolution’ is due to a reassessment of ‘belatedness’, a community’s distant position in time from aetiological events, that enables the present to be seen as an authoritative extension of the past.  Ibid., p. 42. Yet this progress involves both linear movement through time to another physical place (cf. 9:1– 14) as well as vertical movement to another type of existence (cf. 8:1– 2). Paul Ellingworth, ‘Jesus and the Universe in Hebrews,’ EvQ 58:4 (1986), p. 349.  Theissen, p. 361.  Stephen Motyer, ‘The Psalm Quotations of Hebrews 1: A Hermeneutic-Free Zone?’ TynB 50:1 (1999), p. 8.

Conclusion

43

sion, the author must make his reasoning clear in a way that appeals to readers: his exegesis ‘cannot be arbitrary’.¹²⁷ This is not the case regarding qumranic literature, the hermeneutics of which suggest a communal tradition of reasoning and acceptable application that does not need to be so clearly justified.¹²⁸

Conclusion This chapter has explored the hermeneutical methods employed by the author of Hebrews to explicate Pss 95:7– 11 and 110:4. It is clear that Hebrews employs a wide range of exegetical devices, many of which reflect Rabinnic practice; in particular gezerah shewah, qal wahomer and quod non in Thora, non in mundo, as well as the ‫ פתר‬type of historical interpretation, relating the referents of texts to events in scripture. Yet is has been shown that Hebrews also employs forms of historical techniques unattested outside the New Testament. The historical interest of the author of Hebrews is apparent in Heb 4:7, as the meaning of Ps 95:11 is isolated by referring the text to its David authorship. The same interest in the historical setting of the biblical text is seen in the slightly different argument of Heb 7:11, where Ps 110:4 is understood as replacing the law which establishes the Levitical priesthood on the basis of its date. This use of history in exegesis must be understood as a product of the author’s distinctively Christian view of history, as a godly pilgrimage through time to an appointed end. In the final chapter of this study, Hebrews’ interest in using the original historical setting of a biblical text as a clue to its meaning will be related to contemporary discussions concerning the future of historical study in the fields of Biblical Studies and Theological Interpretation of the Bible. Whilst theological readers of the Bible often assert superiority over the text’s meaning in its initial context by claiming insights unavailable to the text’s author, the historical-critical method is accused of undermining the theological voice of the text by means of an imperialistic account of history, one that imposes a post-Enlightenment account of reality onto the text. The author of Hebrews intends to do neither of these in his expositions of Pss 95:7– 11 and 110:4. For him, the past has integrity

 Ibid. Cf. Salevao, p. 6 and D. H. Wenkel, ‘Gezerah Shawah as Analogy in the Epistle to the Hebrews.’ BTB 37:2 (2007), p. 65. This seems to contradict James Thompson’s assertion that Ps 95 merely ‘grounds speculation’ on a Philonic and transcendent κατάπαυσις. Thompson, Beginnings, pp. 81 & 86.  David A. DeSilva, ‘The Invention and Argumentative Function of Priestly Discourse in the Epistle to the Hebrews,’ BBR 16:2 (2006), p. 295 does, however, suggest that Hebrews deploys a communal rhetorical ‘dialect’ relating to the theology of priesthood.

44

Chapter 1: Historical Exegesis in the Epistle to the Hebrews

as part of the same theological reality in which he resides. Because of this, he does not claim to have a new insight into the meaning of a text, nor does he consciously impose a new account of reality onto the text: rather he seeks to stand in the same tradition of theological witness from which the text emerged.

Chapter 2: Historical Exegesis in the Acts of the Apostles The use of Scripture in the Acts of the Apostles has attracted a significant amount of scholarly interest, as has Luke’s understanding of history. The study of the biblical hermeneutics of Acts has often accompanied work on Luke’s understanding of history and a particular area of controversy in Acts scholarship has been the extent to which Luke perceives the whole of his literary project as a record of the fulfilment of historic scriptural prophecy. Luke typically employs scriptural texts in the direct speech of his protagonists. In the case of Acts this speech is usually found in the preaching of the Apostles. For the most part, Luke’s biblical hermeneutics have been understood as belonging to rabbinic tradition and a particularly strong case can be made here. However, despite the significant difference that exists between Acts and Hebrews; despite their vastly different genres and literary style, on two occasions Acts appears to use a mode of historical reasoning in its biblical exegesis similar to that seen in Hebrews in the previous chapter. This chapter will offer a detailed analysis of Peter’s Pentecost speech in Acts 2:14– 41, focusing particularly on the treatment of Pss 16:8 – 11 and 110:1 in vv.25 – 36 and arguing that a form of historical exegesis (one that aims to understand the text through reference to the text’s assumed historical author) is employed. It will then go on to examine the treatment of Ps 16:10 in Acts 13:33 – 37 within the wider context of Paul’s speech in vv.26 – 41. Though it is clear that to some extent the use of Scripture in the Acts of the Apostles is typical of 1st Century Jewish literature, the use of history in Acts 2:25 – 36 and 13:33 – 37 represents something of a Christian innovation. This innovation, it will be argued, is dependent upon Luke’s understanding of history as a linear process of prophecy and fulfilment.

2.1 Issues relating to the study of the speeches in Acts Since the study in this chapter focuses entirely on material from the speeches in Acts, certain issues regarding the nature of these speeches need to be addressed. The speeches in Acts have provoked significant discussion, much of which relates to identifying Luke’s broader task in writing as well as issues of literary genre. To what extent is Luke writing history? If he is, what sort of history is he writing? Is he writing a creative and fanciful history akin to that of Herodotus,

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or does he aspire to some degree of historical accuracy like Thucydides?¹²⁹ The most sophisticated analysis of the issue of genre is offered by Loveday Alexander who argues that Luke-Acts ought to be understood in the light of Hellenistic Fachprosa style.¹³⁰ The wonderful opening sentence of Luke’s Gospel raises this question of historicity since Luke claims to describe events καθὼς παρέδοσαν ἡμῖν οἱ ἀπ’ ἀρχῆς αὐτόπται καὶ ὑπηρέται γενόμενοι τοῦ λόγου. It is clear that Luke intends to record events which he is sure actually occurred. However, one cannot be certain of the extent to which he felt he was producing a work of a certain genre which permitted a degree of poetic licence. And yet even if Luke is writing something akin to the best Greek historical writing, to what extent should the speeches be regarded as representing historical fact? It is often pointed out in this respect that Thucydides created the speeches uttered by his historical characters.¹³¹ Is this the case in Acts? If the speeches are not to be regarded as representing actual speeches given by the Apostles, must they be seen as purely Lukan creations or do they instead depend in part upon some primitive kerygma? If the speeches are composed entirely by Luke, how can one account for the diversity of the speeches?¹³² For example, it is often noted

 Daniel Marguerat, The First Christian Historian: Writing the ‘Acts of the Apostles’ (SNTSMS 121; Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2002), pp. 5 – 25 offers a helpful approach to the question of historicity. Drawing on the insights of Raymond Aron and Paul Ricoeur, Margeurat suggests that the notion of ‘historicity’ should take account of the committed situatedness of the historian, following Aron’s maxim, ‘theory precedes history.’ Having recognised the primarily ‘poetic’, rather than ‘documentary’ nature of Luke’s ‘history’, Marguerat argues that Luke sits somewhere between the theological histories of Josephus and the Hellenistic historiographical guidance of Lucian of Samosata.  Loveday Alexander, The Preface to Luke’s Gospel: Literary Convention and Social Context in Luke 1.1 – 4 and Acts 1.1 (SNTSMS 78; Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1993), pp. 102– 146 argues that the opening sentence of Luke aligns Luke-Acts with this genre of ‘middle-brow’ literature aimed at conveying factual or scientific information. Cf. Loveday Alexander, Acts in its Ancient Literary Context (London: T. & T. Clark, 2005), pp. 4– 5.  Cf. Peloponnesian War 1.22.1 ‘καὶ ὅσα μὲν λόγῳ εἶπον ἕκαστοι ἢ μέλλοντες πολεμήσειν ἢ ἐν αὐτῷ ἤδη ὄντες, χαλεπὸν τὴν ἀκρίβειαν αὐτὴν τῶν λεχθέντων διαμνημονεῦσαι ἦν ἐμοί τε ὧν αὐτὸς ἤκουσα καὶ τοῖς ἄλλοθέν ποθεν ἐμοὶ ἀπαγγέλλουσιν: ὡς δ᾽ ἂν ἐδόκουν ἐμοὶ ἕκαστοι περὶ τῶν αἰεὶ παρόντων τὰ δέοντα μάλιστ᾽ εἰπεῖν, ἐχομένῳ ὅτι ἐγγύτατα τῆς ξυμπάσης γνώμης τῶν ἀληθῶς λεχθέντων, οὕτως εἴρηται.’ Cf. Martin Dibelius, ‘The Speeches in Acts and Ancient Historiography,’ in Studies in the Acts of the Apostles (ed. Heinrich Greeven; London: SCM, 1956), pp. 138 – 185. One must remember, however, that for Thucydides, speeches still constitute a ‘positive contribution to historical record.’ F. F. Bruce, The Acts of the Apostles: Greek Text with Introduction and Notes (Leicester: Apollos, 1990), p. 34.  This is a diversity almost missed by Marion L. Soards, The Speeches in Acts: Their Content, Context and Concerns (Lousiville, Kentucky: WJK, 1994) in his important study of the speeches, who employs the perceived uniformity of the speeches as a statement of the unity of Acts. He

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that Stephen’s speech in Acts 7:2– 53 displays theological emphases which are utterly absent from the other speeches of Acts.¹³³ If the speeches do represent sources which pre-date Acts, where do they come from? Are they derived from early Christian synagogue homilies as their proem or yelammedenu forms often suggest? Are they derived from kernels of historical information about actual speeches which might account for the distinctiveness of certain speeches? In the case of the Pentecost and Pisidian Antioch speeches with which this chapter is concerned, it is likely that Ps 16 and the historical reasoning which accompanies it, were part of a primitive apostolic kerygma which Luke cites and redacts to

writes, ‘the speeches in Acts are more than a literary device or a historiographic convention, or a theological vehicle – though they are all of these; they achieve the unification of the otherwise diverse and incoherent elements comprised by Acts. Through the regular introduction of formally repetitive speeches, Luke unified his narrative; and, more important, he unified the image of an otherwise personally, ethnically, and geographically diverse early Christianity…Through the repetition of speech Luke created the dynamic of analogy, which unifies his presentation. Precisely because there are so many speeches in Acts, one is able to compare and contrast the different speeches with each other to notice where and how language, motifs and patterns are reiterated and varied.’ Whilst there is undoubtedly stylistic repetition in the speeches (and this chapter will note many of devices and phrases which demonstrate this) there appears to be significant variance of theological emphasis and exegetical style in the speeches, so even to suggest theological tensions in the early Church. For example, Stephen’s speech has been understood as representing the particular emphases of the Hellenistic faction indicated in Acts 6:1. Cf. Andrianjatova Rakotoharintsifa, ‘Luke and the Internal Divisions in the Early Church,’ in Luke’s Literary Achievement: Collected Essays (ed. Christopher Tuckett; JSNTSup 116; Sheffield: Sheffield Academic Press, 1995), pp. 169 – 171.  E.g. Jürgen Roloff, Die Apostelgeschichte (Göttingen and Zurich: Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 1981), p. 117, Hans Conzelmann, Acts of the Apostles: A Commentary on the Acts of the Apostles (Hermeneia; Philadelphia: Fortress, 1987), p. 57, Soards, Speeches, p. 56ff (Whilst Soards is keen to show stylistic similarity, he still notes unique features such as the inclusion of Solomon and the clear lack of common kerygmatic material behind the speech, as is also the case with the Areopagus speech.), C. K. Barrett, The Acts of the Apostles (ICC; London: T & T Clark, 1994), pp. 335 – 336, Johannes Munck, The Acts of the Apostles: A New Translation with Introduction and Commentary (ABC; New York: Doubleday, 1967), p. 65 and Richard I Pervo, Acts: A Commentary (Hermeneia; Minneapolis: Fortress, 2009), p. 178. Having outlined possible explanations of the speech’s source, Pervo notes helpfully that ‘the quest to explain this speech by identifying its origin is, for the purpose of interpreting Acts, a blind alley. The most prudent solution is to posit the use of a model, derived not simply from biblical sources but… through the medium of Hellenistic Jewish tradition.’ Cf. Gregory E. Sterling, ‘“Opening the Scriptures”: The Legitimation of the Jewish Diaspora and the Early Christian Mission’, in Jesus and the Heritage of Israel: Luke’s Narrative Claim upon Israel’s Legacy (ed. David P. Moessner; Harrisburg: Trinity Press, 1999), pp. 199 – 225. The opposite view (that the speech is in its entirety a Lukan composition) is argued by Luke Timothy Johnson, The Acts of the Apostles (Minnesota: Liturgical Press, 1992), pp. 119 – 122.

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suit the different contexts of the two speeches.¹³⁴ However, since the arguments are not identical and since Acts 13:33 – 37 employs two other texts which obscure the pure form of the Ps 16 argument found in Acts 2:25 – 36, it is still possible that Luke records speeches (in a compressed form) which took place in the contexts he describes and which both employed this tradition of explaining Ps 16 by means of an historical argument concerning David as the assumed author of that text.

2.2 Exegetical practice in Luke-Acts The use of Scripture in Luke-Acts is impossible to characterise simply. Perhaps more than any other New Testament author, Luke makes use not only of scriptural citations and allusions to specific scriptural texts, but couches his whole literary project in ‘scriptural’ language. At one point the consensus was that Luke-Acts was full of Semitisms, suggesting that Luke wrote with Greek as a second language.¹³⁵ However, it is now noted that Luke-Acts displays not Semitisms but Septuagintalisms, that is to say, Semitisms which are dependent upon the Old Greek biblical texts with which Luke was familiar.¹³⁶ As Jervell argues,  The claim of Ben Witherington, The Acts of the Apostles: A Socio-Rhetorical Commentary (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1998), p. 145 that the multiple use of Ps 16 suggests that it was available to Luke as part of a testimonia collection seems unlikely given the difference in length of each citation. Why should Luke use a shorter quotation from Ps 16 in Acts 13 when essentially the same use is made of the quotation in each case? The suggestion offered by H. Douglas Buckwater, The Character and Purpose of Luke’s Christology (SNTSMS 89; Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1996), p. 116 is much more attractive. He suggests that ‘Luke possibly reflects in these two episodes the manner in which the early church taught and defended Jesus’ resurrection from the OT Scriptures to a Jewish audience…and Jesus’ own teaching on the matter (cf. Luke 24:27, 45).’ Cf. Barnabas Lindars, New Testament Apologetic: The Doctrinal Significance of the Old Testament Quotation (London: SCM, 1961), p. 37– 45.  Cf. Max Wilcox, The Semitisms of Acts (Oxford: Clarendon, 1965). Whilst Wilcox notes the clear existence of ‘Septuagintalisms’ in Acts (pp. 58 ff.) he that these can not explain the widespread presence of, so called, ‘hard core’ Semitisms. These residual Semitisms consist of Semitic word order in certain phrases (though Wilcox can usually only find such phrases in Western Tradition manuscripts), certain idiomatic expressions such as ποιεῖν κοπετὸν (Acts 8:2) and ἀναστῆναι ἐπί τοὺς πόδας (Acts 14:10) (though forms of both of these expressions are attested in Old Greek texts), and principally, Semitic vocabulary, such as ἐπί τὸ αὐτό, though this too is attested in Old Greek texts.  Though this perspective is certainly not new. W. K. L. Clark, ‘The Uses of the Septuagint in Acts,’ in The Beginnings of Christianity; Vol II (London: Macmillan, 1922), pp. 66 – 103 offered the first detailed study of the ‘Septuagintal’ language of Acts. He noted that Acts contains the highest number of New Testament hapax legomena which can be traced to the Septuagint and

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Luke understood himself to be writing Scripture.¹³⁷ Familiar with what he regards as prophecy from Old Greek biblical texts, Luke writes about their fulfilment in language which attempts to emphasise the relationship between the scriptural past and the present. Luke wants his readers to understand that the life, death and resurrection of Jesus and the early years of the Church are of ultimate significance, akin to the dramatic events and expectations of Israel’s past. Scripture is employed by Luke on this most fundamental basis, influencing the very words he uses to describe the early years of the Church. Yet it is not simply the language of Acts that reveals Luke’s interest in writing Scripture. There are numerous allusions to events of the Old Greek Bible within Luke’s narrative and speeches.¹³⁸ For example, Luke’s description of the day of Pentecost alludes powerfully to idea of the Tower of Babel in Gen 11:1– 9.¹³⁹ This allusion must be understood to be dependent upon Luke’s eschatological understanding of history and the events about which he writes. The coming of

details the use of characteristically ‘Septuagintal’ language in Acts. Clark also suggested the high level of agreement between Old Testament citations in Acts and extant Greek versions. Cf. also B. T. Arnold. ‘Luke’s Characterising use of the Old Testament in the Book of Acts,’ in History, Literature and Society in the Book of Acts (ed. Ben Witherington; Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1996), pp. 300 – 323 and Joseph Fitzmyer, ‘The Use of the Old Testament in LukeActs,’ SBLSP (1992), pp. 524– 537.  Jacob Jervell, ‘The Future of the Past: Luke’s Vision of Salvation History and its Bearing on his writing of History’, in History, Literature, and Society in the Book of Acts (ed. Ben Witherington; Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1996), p. 110. This is also argued by Daryl Schmidt, ‘The Historiography of Acts: Deuteronomistic or Hellenistic?’ SBLSP 24 (1985), pp. 417– 426 with specific reference to Deuteronomy. Schmidt notes the common emphasis in both Deuteronomy and Acts upon idolatry, ‘name theology,’ centralisation of worship, the exodus, covenant, election, David and the fulfilment of prophecy and suggests that Luke intended to write in such a way as to invite this comparison. Cf. Soards, pp. 143ff and James D. G. Dunn, ‘The Book of Acts as Salvation History,’ in Heil und Geschichte: Die Geschichtsbezogenheit des Heils und das Problem der Heilsgeschichte in der biblischen Tradition und in der theologischen Deutung (ed. Jörg Frey, Stefan Krauter and Hermann Lichtenberger; WUNT 248; Tübingen: Mohr Siebeck, 2009), pp. 385 – 401.  It is notoriously difficult to identify scriptural allusions with any degree of certainty, however Fitzmyer, ‘Use of the Old Testament,’ p. 525 identifies Acts 2:30, 31, 39, 3:13, 7:3, 5b, 7, 18, 27– 28, 30, 32, 33, 34, 37, 40, 13:22 etc. Fitzmyer’s assessment is certainly more conservative than NA 27. M. D. Goulder, Type and History in Acts (London: SPCK, 1964), pp. 145 – 178 probably goes too far in his analysis of typological allusions in Acts, assuming that Luke had detailed knowledge of texts such as Daniel and Jonah for which there is little evidence in the proper citations of Acts.  Pervo, Acts, p. 61 n.19 notes that the basic similarities include the references to languages as well as the use of the verb συγχέω in Acts 2:6 and Gen 11:7 and 9. C.f. F. F. Bruce, ‘The Holy Spirit in the Acts of the Apostles,’ Int. 27:2 (1973), p. 171.

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the Holy Spirit¹⁴⁰ is an event which restores the unity of humankind described in the Genesis prehistory, as barriers of language are broken down by the proclamation of the Gospel. Stephen’s speech provides the best examples of biblical allusion in the speeches due to the clear attempt to ‘re-write’ elements of biblical narrative. Another example of Luke’s use of biblical allusion outside Stephen’s speech can be seen in Acts 3:18: ὁ δὲ θεός, ἃ προκατήγγειλεν διὰ στόματος πάντων τῶν προφητῶν παθεῖν τὸν χριστὸν αὐτοῦ, ἐπλήρωσεν οὕτως. Here, a number of texts are presumably being alluded to, though none are actually quoted. Luke also makes use of explicit and possible citations from Scripture. NestleAland 27 identifies 32 probable quotations in Acts, ¹⁴¹ all but one of which occur within the first fifteen chapters of the book. Luke cites 14 pentateuchal texts,¹⁴² 9 texts from the latter prophets, 7 psalm texts and two texts which have a number of possible origins.¹⁴³ It is important to note, however, that 10 of the quotations

 This chapter will capitalise ‘Holy Spirit’ and ‘Spirit’ as proper nouns, though it is acknowledged that there are significant issues relating to the personality of the Spirit in Luke-Acts which bring this practice into question. The principal difficulties relate to Luke’s lack of consistency in supplying the definite article and the adjective ‘holy’ as well as the clearly Septuagintal (and therefore impersonal) overtones to Luke’s portrayal of the Spirit. Cf. François Bovon, Luke the Theologian: Fifty-five Years of Research (1950 – 2005) (Waco: Baylor University Press, 2005), pp. 231 and 238. These difficulties are not recognised by Bruce, ‘The Holy Spirit’, p. 173 who claims that ‘in the Qumran texts the “holy spirit” can hardly be said to be personal, whereas his personality is clearly to be discerned in Acts (as elsewhere in the New Testament)’. However, Max Turner, ‘Jesus and the Spirit in Lucan Perspective,’ TynB 32:1 (1981), p. 40 appears to regard the modal and contingent identity of the Spirit as ‘God’s very own self-expression, the extension of his personality and activity’ as an important factor in Lukan ‘divine Christology; for in their claim that the charismatic-prophetic Spirit was now the Spirit of Jesus, under his lordship, Christians virtually identified Jesus with God.’  This figure is based on the assumption that whilst the quotation in Acts 15:16 – 17 is clearly a conflation of three texts (Jer 12:15, Amos 9:11 and Isa 42:2) it is fairly certain that Luke cites this excerpt as a single text.  The priority of pentateuchal texts is problematic for the theory of B. J. Koet, Five Studies on the Interpretation of Scripture in Luke-Acts (Studiorum Novi Testamenti Auxilia 14; Leuven: Leuven University Press, 1989), p. 143 that Luke-Acts is primarily interested in Isaianic texts and Isaianic theology. This may be a plausible account of the Gospel of Luke, but is hard to maintain for Acts.  Seven Psalm texts are employed in Acts; 69:26 (Acts 1:20), 109:8 (Acts 1:20), 16:8 – 11 (Acts 2:25 – 28), 110:1 (Acts 2:34– 35), 2:1 (Acts 4:25), 2:7 (Acts 13:33) and 16:10 (Acts 13:35). The nine texts from the latter prophets are; Joel 3:1– 5 (Acts 2:17– 21), Amos 5:25 – 27 (Acts 7:42), Isa 66:1 (Acts 7:49), Isa 53:7 (Acts 8:32– 33), Isa 55:3 (Acts 13:34), Hab 1:5 (Acts 13:41), Isa 49:6 (Acts 13:47), Isa 6:9 (Acts 28:26 – 27) and one conflated prophetic text that comprises Jer 12:15, Amos 9:11 and Isa 42:21 (Acts 15:16 – 17). The fourteen pentateuchal texts are Ex 3:6 (Acts 3:13), Dt 18:15 – 20 (Acts

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from the Pentateuch are found in Stephen’s speech and reflect the aim of that speech to reconstruct the history of Israel in apocopated form. Quotations occur almost exclusively in the speeches of the Apostles.¹⁴⁴ This is no doubt due to an attempt to portray the earliest leaders of the Church as inspired interpreters of Scripture. It is significant in this respect that there is not a single quotation from Scripture in the numerous speeches given by ‘non-Christians’ in Acts, even in the speech given by the Rabbi Gamaliel (Acts 5:34 – 39), of whom Luke offers a sympathetic description. Generally, Luke employs no rigid citation formulae, in contrast to the Pauline καθὼς γέγραπται or the qumranic ‫פשרו‬. Quite a wide range of introductions are employed, though often texts are incorporated into an Apostle’s own speech as in Acts 4:24 and 14:15. Luke generally does not cite a text simply as the speech of God. This is not the case in Stephen’s speech, however, where texts are usually introduced as the direct speech of God to serve the historical narrative provided (cf. Acts 7:31 & 33). In comparison with the Epistle to the Hebrews, where texts are normally viewed as the direct speech of God, Luke shows a much greater interest in identifying where biblical citations come from. Quotations are often referred simply to an historical author or speaker. This is the case in Acts 2:25 (Δαυὶδ γὰρ λέγει εἰς αὐτόν), 3:22 (Μωϋσῆς μὲν εἶπεν ὅτι) and perhaps less specifically in 13:40 (ἐν τοῖς προφήταις), though this could either to people or books depending on how one takes the dative.¹⁴⁵ Occasionally the named author is referred to as an agent through whom God speaks. This is the case in Acts 2:16,

3:22), Lev 23:29 (Acts 3:23), Gen 22;18 (Acts 3:25), Gen 12:1 (Acts 7:3) Gen 48:4 (Acts 7:5), Gen 15:13 (Acts 7:6), Ex 1:8 (Acts 7:18), Ex 2:14 (Acts 7:27), Ex 3:6 (Acts 7:32), Ex 3:5 & 7 (Acts 7:33 – 34) Ex 2:14 (Acts 7:35), Dt 18:15 (Acts 7:37) and Ex 32:1 (Acts 7:40). The similar quotations in Acts 4:24 and 14:15 are of uncertain origin. NA 27 suggests that they may be references to Ex 20:11 or Ps 146:6. These quotations are certainly not formal, lacking any introductory formula and they are not referred back to in the speeches in which they are set, rather they are adopted as though they are the speaker’s own words. Luke may not have thought of these as quotations at all, but may rather be a demonstration of his desire to employ Septuagintal language.  In Acts 8:32– 33, Luke quotes from Isa 53:7 and 8, though it is Philip who interprets the text. Koet, Interpretation of Scripture in Luke-Acts, p. 150 explains this as the result of Luke’s presentation of Jesus’ ministry. ‘It is important to note that, according to Luke, Jesus with his interpretation teaches his disciples to understand Scripture (e. g. in Luke 24). Thus, as a teacher, Jesus enables his disciples to become interpreters themselves. It is therefore not unexpected that according to the account of Acts his disciples continue to expound Scripture…The continuity between Jesus and his disciples is especially clear in the case of Paul. He, just like Jesus, is depicted by Luke during both his debut and his farewell in Acts as an expositor of Scripture.’  Acts 13:40 provides a peculiarly difficult citation formula to categorise, since εἰρημένον, a verb of speaking, is applied to something that could either be historical prophets whose speech is cited, or else could be the speech of some other, probably God, in a body of literature.

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4:25 (the most sophisticated example of this type of agency in Acts: ὁ τοῦ πατρὸς ἡμῶν διὰ πνεύματος ἁγίου στόματος Δαυὶδ παιδός σου εἰπών), and 28:25. Sometimes the textual origins of the quotation are included within citation formulae as in Acts 1:20 (γέγραπται γὰρ ἐν βίβλῳ ψαλμῶν), 7:42 and 13:33 (very specifically: ὡς καὶ ἐν τῷ ψαλμῷ γέγραπται τῷ δευτέρῳ). These formulae are unique in Acts in that they introduce their texts as written documents though, of course, those formulae which employ the names of personalities to whom authorship of a text is attributed may also be stating the literary origins of that text. This interest in stating the assumed origin of a biblical citation is not very common in 1st Century exegetical literature. It is, however, a regular feature of Philo’s citation formulae.¹⁴⁶ Because of this, it is unlikely to be of special significance to the argument of this chapter, that the Acts of the Apostles employs an understanding of a text’s original historical situation in the interpretation of that text, since Philo employs similar citation formulae and yet demonstrates no interest in the original historical setting of scriptural texts. However, the motif of textual identification and authorship in the citation formulae in Acts does provide an apt accompaniment to the historical type of exegetical reasoning in Acts 2:25 – 36 and 13:33 – 37. There are other aspects of the citation formulae in Acts that are of a somewhat peculiar nature. In Stephen’s speech it is common for texts to be cited as the direct speech of God in the past to a specific person, determined by the biblical narrative that is being re-told (cf. Acts 7:3, 6, 7 and 31). Stephen’s speech also includes scripture as the direct speech of historical persons in Acts 7:26, 27, 35, 37 and 40. This is quite different from the quotation of texts as belonging to an author, as in Acts 3:22, since the text itself is seen to be a record of something said in the past which pertains simply to the past, rather than in a more abstract way to the Messiah or to an age to come. Occasionally, Scripture is also cited in Acts as the direct speech of God to a specific named figure of the past, as in Acts 3:25 (λέγων πρὸς Ἀβραάμ) and 7:3. These introductions which aim to cite texts with reference to their literary situation within biblical narrative are a particular fea-

 Cf. de Op. 25 – 26 in which Moses is referred to as the author of Gen 1. Thereafter, scriptural quotations are referred back to him and are typically introduced by some form of φησὶ δ’ ὡς. This mode of citation is also common in Leg. All., perhaps as both works concentrate on progressing through a single large portion of text. Unlike scholarship on the Epistle to the Hebrews, it has not been seriously suggested that Philo exercises any significant influence on the interpretation of Scripture in Acts.

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ture of the genre of ‘re-written Bible’ and are quite typical of much of the haggadic literature, as well as certain texts from Qumran.¹⁴⁷ As suggested by the diversity of citation formulae in Acts, Scripture is employed by Luke for a great variety of purposes. Whilst in Stephen’s speech scriptural texts are employed simply to illustrate the ‘re-written’ biblical narrative, in Peter’s Pentecost and Sanhedrin speeches they provide crucial proofs of the Messiahship and resurrection of Jesus. In Peter’s initial speech concerning the replacement of Judas, Pss 69:25 and 109:8 appear to be employed in a manner which bears little resemblance to their literary setting within Pss 69 and 109. It is as though these texts just happen to express Luke’s understanding of the status of Judas and the need to replace him. However, the prayer of Peter and John in Acts 4:24– 30 employs Ps 2:1– 2 in a manner that seems to reflect, to a greater degree, the literary purpose of that text. The prayer also attempts to explain how Ps 2:1– 2 relates to the situation in which the early Church finds itself, picking up on the verb συνήχθησαν from the psalm and using it of Herod, Pontius Pilate, the nations (cf. Ps 2:1) and the peoples of Israel, as well as noting that Jesus has been anointed (ὃν ἕχρισας) and that the gathered nations are in rebellion κατὰ τοῦ κυρίου καὶ κατὰ τοῦ χριστοῦ αὐτοῦ. This same method of interpretation (probably the dominant exegetical method in Luke-Acts) which seeks to show the correlation of Scripture and the contemporary situation is also employed in Acts 15:12– 21, as a composite text from the Prophets is related to the debate in the Jerusalem Council regarding the status of Gentile converts. It is also likely that this method is employed in Acts 2:14– 21 as the strange situation described in 2:1– 13 is compared to the eschatological situation described in Joel 2:28 – 32. The correspondence of prophecy and the history of the earliest Church is of considerable importance in Acts, since Luke is keen to claim that the events surrounding the death and resurrection of Jesus are those to which the prophetic Scriptures refer.

2.3 The hermeneutics of Acts 2:14 – 41 In comparison with the two ‘expositions’ from the Epistle to the Hebrews discussed in the first chapter, Peter’s Pentecost sermon in Acts 2:14– 41 is not concerned with explicating a single primary text by means of a variety of arguments.

 Cf. 1QM XI, 4QTest, 4QTobbar, 4QpsDanbar, 4QPent and Michael Segal, ‘Between Bible and Rewritten Bible,’ in Biblical Interpretation at Qumran (ed. Matthias Henze; Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2005), pp. 14– 17.

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Instead, three quotations are considered in turn, though the last two texts are held together by the same exegetical treatment. The dominant concern of Peter’s speech is not to interpret a text but to interpret a situation: the situation described in Acts 2:1– 13. For this reason, three scriptural texts are brought in as evidence that this strange situation represents the beginning of the ‘last days’ in which salvation is available to all who are baptised into the name of the risen messiah Jesus of Nazareth. As is noted above, the quotation of Joel 3:1– 5 is interpreted by appropriation: by the situational context in which it is delivered, that is to say, because of the correlation between that context and the perceived themes of the quotation. The second and third quotations (of Pss 16:8 – 11 and 110:1, respectively) are not subjected to this typical Lukan mode of exegetical reasoning, but are instead read in the light of their supposed Davidic authorship.¹⁴⁸ It will be argued that this is a form of ‘historical’ reasoning: that the meanings of Pss 16:8 – 11 and 110:1 are defined and limited in the speech by the notion that these texts are Davidic, and that David, as an historical person, can only have meant a certain thing when producing these texts. It will be argued that, unlike Hebrews, it is not the historical dating of the psalms that is of significance in the speech, rather it is the historical identity and purpose of David as an author which determines the interpretation of these texts offered in the speech. As in chapter one, Acts 2:25 – 36, within which Pss 16:8 – 11 and 110:1 are quoted and discussed, will be treated within the context of the speech as a whole. The Pentecost speech lacks the clear structure delineated by paraenetic sections and distinct arguments and themes that was noted in Heb 3 – 4. The argument here seems to proceed in a more-or-less associative style related to the

 Whilst the idea of David as an author of Scripture only features as an exegetical device in Acts 2:29 – 35 and 13:36 – 37 with Acts, David is simply referred to as an author in citation formulae on a number of occasions. This practice seems to be consistent with other New Testament literature though its frequency is somewhat surprising. David is referred to as the author or speaker of a scriptural citation in ten places in the New Testament (Matt 22:43 – 45, Mk 12:36 – 37, Luke 20:42– 44, Acts 1:16, 2:25, 4:25, 13:36, Rom 4:6, 11:9 and Heb 4:7.). Three of these occurrences are in parallel texts in the synoptic gospels and should perhaps be regarded as one repeated instance. In which case, the Acts of the Apostles, which contains four references to Davidic authorship, is seen to provide over half of such references in the New Testament. It could be that Luke’s interest in naming David as the author of scriptural citations stems from his use of material in Luke 22:42– 44, yet there is plenty of evidence to suggest that Davidic authorship was a common assumption prior to the composition of Acts. Cf. 11QPsa, ‫ לדוד‬as a psalm superscription, etc. Gregory V. Trull, ‘Views on Peter’s Use of Psalm 16:8 – 11 in Acts 2:25 – 32,’ BSac 161 (2004), p. 195 notes that the Christian treatment of Ps 16 is profoundly affected by its interpretation in Acts. After Acts, Ps 16 is read as a messianic text, though significantly the argument from historical authorship used in Acts is ignored.

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three scriptural citations. The situation alluded to in Acts 2:14b-15 demands the quotation from Joel 2:28 – 32. This quotation is not directly quoted again in the speech and after the quotation the attention of the speech moves immediately from explaining the situation referred to in vv.14– 15 to describing a different set of recent events: the death and resurrection of Jesus. Acts 2:14– 21 ought to be understood as constituting a distinct unit within the speech. The description of the ministry, death and resurrection of Jesus in vv.22– 24 moves almost seamlessly into a scriptural defence of Jesus’ resurrection and the claim that he is the Christ in vv.25 – 34. Whereas it is quite likely that the author of Hebrews occasionally edited the biblical texts he employed to suit his argument, it is hard to establish this practice in the Pentecost speech. Whilst the quotation from Joel appears to differ significantly from the extant Old Greek versions, it is unclear whether all of these differences arise as a result of Luke’s own intentions.¹⁴⁹ The notion that Luke de-

 The quotation of Joel 2:28 – 32 (Old Greek and Massoretic Text Joel 3:1– 5) is one of the longest in the New Testament. It is fairly certain that the quotation is derived from the Old Greek translations of the Hebrew Scriptures commonly known as the Septuagint. As has been suggested above, Luke’s writing is heavily Septuagintal. The coherence of the Old Greek texts cited in Acts with extant Old Greek texts suggests this dependence against the idea that Luke is acquainted with Semitic language and scriptural texts. Having noted this, it is clear the Joel quotation differs significantly from extant Old Greek versions of Joel, though, whilst it is likely that some of these differences are Lukan, the majority may have existed in Luke’s source material.The explanatory insertion of ἐν ταῖς ἐσχάταις ἡμέραις λέγει ὁ θεός in Acts 2:17 replaces the ambiguous Old Greek μετὰ ταῦτα in a manner which undoubtedly favours the aim of the speech. In the same verse, the clauses relating to the νεανίσκοι and πρεσβύτεροι appear in reverse order to the Old Greek versions of Joel. However, the order presented in Acts agrees with the Massoretic Text and it could be that Luke’s source was based on this reading. Likewise, the particle γε in Acts 2:18 does not appear in extant Old Greek versions of Joel yet seems to reflect the use of ‫ גם‬in the Massoretic text and which does not seem to be accounted for in the Old Greek versions. In the same verse δούλους and δούλας are supplemented with the first person possessive genitive personal pronoun, a reading which departs from both the Massoretic and Old Greek readings available. Though these insertions are likely to benefit the specific use of the text in the speech, by identifying those whom Luke describes as having received the Spirit as servants of God, Nestle-Aland 27 does not recognise these as insertions and it would seem that these insertions are not disputed. This is surprising, since the Western text seems to demonstrate a trend towards conservatively correcting scriptural quotations to demonstrate a closer resemblance to the dominant Old Greek readings (cf. Eldon Jay Epp, The Theological Tendency of Codex Bezae Cantabrigiensis in Acts (SNTSMS 3; Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1966), pp. 38 – 40 and Josep Ruis-Camps and Jenny Read-Heimerdinger, The Message of Acts in Codex Bezae: A Comparison with the Alexandrian Tradition (London: T. & T. Clark, 2004), p. 1.25). For instance, codex Bezae omits the explanatory καὶ προφητεύσουσιν in Acts 2:18, as do other Western tradition texts, and changes θεός in v.17 to the more septuagintal κυρίος. It is si-

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liberately edited this text to suit the argument of the speech is also somewhat hard to maintain in the light of the lack of variants in the two psalm citations in the speech.¹⁵⁰ There, variants which do exist are of extremely limited significance since they are only available in the codices and are typically, even there, corrected by another hand. The important witness P74 supports the correlation between the readings of these psalms in Acts and the majority Old Greek readings. Since little early correction of the divergences of the Joel quotation exists and since redaction does not appear to be a universal practice in Luke’s citation of Scripture, it may be possible that some these divergences are the result of the Old Greek sources used by Luke, sources representing the traditions known to earlier Alexandrian tradition scribes working before the major codices.

gnificant, then, given this conforming tendency in the Western text that the three apparently Lukan insertions in Acts 2:19 are undisputed. It may also be significant that the perhaps more obvious insertion in Acts 2:17 is also undisputed, as though there were no conflict between the Joel quotation presented by Luke and other ancient readings. Darrell L. Bock, Proclamation From Prophecy and Pattern: Lukan Old Testament Christology (JSNTSup 12; Sheffield: JSOT Press, 1987), pp. 155 – 259 offers a sustained discussion of each variant reading of each scriptural citation in Acts, arguing that variants offer little to Luke’s task of ‘proclamation from prophecy and pattern’ and notes certain cases where the variants are detrimental to Luke’s argument.  The excerpt from Ps 16:8 – 11 agrees remarkably well with extant Old Greek versions of the same text. Cf. Gregory V. Trull, ‘Peter’s Interpretation of Psalm 16:8 – 11 in Acts 2:25 – 32,’ BSac 161 (2004), pp. 434– 435. Small variants, however, may be detected. Codex Sinaiticus and Codex Bezae both read κύριον μου in the first line of the quotations, though it is unclear as to where this tradition comes from, since it is not a known variant for Ps 16 itself. Maybe a Greek version of the psalm existed which translated ‫ יהוה‬as κύριον μου, following its vocalisation as ‫?אדני‬ Nestle-Aland 27 also notes that ἠ καρδία μου in Acts 2:26 is transposed by reading εὐφράνθη instead of ηὐφράνθη in Codex Vaticanus and the original reading of Codex Sinaiticus against a clear majority reading. It is fairly certain, however, that the majority reading of Ps 16:8 – 11 in Acts 2:25 – 28 corresponds to the majority Old Greek reading and almost certainly not an independent Lukan translation of a Hebrew vörlage nor is it a quotation from a text which represents a different tradition from the majority Old Greek reading. This conclusion is fairly safe, since what is perhaps the most unusual feature of the Old Greek translations, the translation of ‫ כבודי‬in Ps 16:9 as γλῶσσά μου, is replicated in Acts 2:26. A similar conclusion must be drawn regarding the citation of Ps 110:1 in Acts 2:34– 35. Almost all versions agree with the universal Old Greek reading. The original readings of Sinaiticus and Vaticanus, along with Bezae, omit the nominative definite article from the first clause of the citation against a clear majority reading both of Old Greek and New Testament material.

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2.3.1 Acts 2:14 – 21: Joel 2:28 – 32 explains the situation in which it is quoted. As suggested above, the primary method of scriptural interpretation in Luke-Acts involves the coherence of the biblical text and the context in which it is uttered by an inspired interpreter. Scripture is quoted to fit a specific situation which is perceived by the interpreter to be the fulfilment, the single correct referent, of the text which is understood as prophetic, pointing forward to an appointed time of God’s action. An interpretive interplay of text and context (understood here to be the context in which the text is quoted by the interpreter) is at work here, as the context governs the meaning of the text and as the text proclaims the significance of the context.¹⁵¹ It is this situational interpretation which characterises the use of Joel 2:28 – 32 in Acts 2:14– 21. The Pentecost Speech begins in response to the expressions of the Pentecost crowd’s wonder at the strange scene described in Acts 2:1– 6, the crowd’s question, τί θέλει τοῦτο εἶναι; and the accusation, γλεύκους μεμεστωμένοι εἰσίν. The crowd asks for an explanation of the apparent miracle of the apostles’ speech in different tongues despite the apostles’ Galilean origins (v.7). It is just such an explanation which Peter provides in the speech, particularly through the citation of Joel 2:28 – 32. The necessary relationship between the speech and the situation is evident from the use of ν?ου in Acts 2:14 and from Peter’s claim in v.15 which refers back to v.13: οὐ γὰρ ὡς ὑμεῖς ὑπολαμβάνετε οὗτοι μεθύουσιν, ἔστιν γὰρ ὥρα τρίτη τῆς ἡμέρας. In addition to this, τοῦτο, in v.16 clearly refers back to the situation which has prompted the crowd’s questioning. It is apparent that Peter is to be understood as speaking in response to the Pentecost scene.¹⁵² The speech begins as Peter stands. This is a common feature associated with public speech in Luke-Acts (cf. Luke 5:1, 6:17, 10:25, Acts 1:15, 2:14, 5:20, 25, 34, 13:16, 17:22, 21:40 and 22:30). As noted already, the speech begins by referring to the events descri-

 The precise nature of the context of the speech, the Pentecost events, have been the subject of significant redaction-critical discussion. Gerd Lündemann, Early Christianity According to the Traditions in Acts: A Commentary (London: SCM, 1989), pp. 30 ff. suggests that Acts 2:1– 13 is formed of three basic units of material: a story about the disciples in an upper room, a list of nations present at the Pentecost festival and a typological scene based on Sinai traditions. This list of three ‘sources’ is regarded as too simplistic by A. J. M. Wedderburn, ‘Traditions and Redaction in Acts 2:1– 13,’ JSNT 55:1 (1994), pp. 27– 54 who argues for a more complex background to the Pentecost scene.  Craig A. Evans, ‘The Prophetic Setting of the Pentecost Sermon’, in Luke and Scripture: The Function of Sacred Tradition in Luke-Acts (ed. Craig A. Evans and James A. Sanders; Minneapolis: Fortress, 1993), pp. 212– 218 suggests that the Joel quotation shapes Luke’s narrative of the Pentecost scene, providing the tongues of fire (Acts 2:3) and the charge of drunkenness (Acts 2:13).

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bed in Acts 2:1– 6 and by asserting, as an explanation of these events, that they are τὸ εἰρημένον διὰ τοῦ προφήτου Ἰωήλ. Luke understands the quotation from Joel to be a precise predictive prophecy of the Pentecost scene. As with other similar correlative uses of Scripture in Acts, no attempt is made to confirm that the quotation really does refer to the event to which it is seen to relate. There is no attempt to identify how the text describes particular features of the event to which it is related in the speech. It is as though it is assumed that the correlation cannot be missed by the audience. However, it is possible that the differences between the Joel quotation in the speech and extant Old Greek versions could exist to draw attention to this correlation of text and event. This is perhaps most likely when considering the possible Lukan insertion of καὶ προφητεύσουσιν in Acts 2:18, which could be seen to reinforce the notion (already present in the Joel quotation in Acts 2:17) that the ‘last days’ will be marked by prophetic speech of the manner described in Acts 2:1– 6. However, as has already been noted, the origins of variants such as these are by no means clear. In any case, if Luke wished to demonstrate the correlation between Joel 2:28 – 32 and the Pentecost scene he would have needed either to omit Joel 2:30 – 31, which claims that there will be great signs in the sky when the Spirit of God is poured out on humankind, or else have presented such heavenly signs in the narrative prior to the speech. The result of the Joel quotation is the assertion that the strange Pentecost scene, rather than being a result of the apostles’ drunkenness, denotes the beginning of the age of prophecy and miracles, when God’s Spirit is poured out upon humankind and when salvation is available universally and πᾶς ὃς ἂν ἐπικαλέσηται τὸ ὄνομα κυρίου σωθήσεται.

2.3.2 Acts 2:22 – 35: History and Scripture confirm Jesus as the Risen Christ Just as Joel 2:28 – 32 is employed to explain the events of Acts 2:1– 6, in Acts 2:22– 35 Scripture is again used to explain events. In this part of the Pentecost speech, however, Scripture is not interpreted on the basis of its prophetic correlation with the events being discussed without explanation. The quotations of Pss 16:8 – 11 and 110:1 are employed because they are understood to correlate prophetically with the assertion that Jesus, the Christ, had been raised from the dead. This correlation is not assumed to be self-evident to the audience of the speech and so it is ‘proven’ by two ‘historical’ exegetical arguments. These arguments attempt to demonstrate that the identity and history of the assumed author of these psalms suggest that they must refer to a Messiah figure who will reign eternally: a Messiah who matches the description of Jesus offered in

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Acts 2:22– 24.¹⁵³ The first argument employed to prove this asserts that since David is known as the author of Ps 16:8 – 11, which is understood as claiming a deathless life for the individual who speaks in the psalm, and since the known history of David witnesses to his death, Ps 16:8 – 11 must refer to another. The second argument develops the supposed historical identity of David, claiming that he was a prophet, who, as a prophet properly speaks concerning the future and therefore does not speak about himself as Messiah. These two arguments should be regarded as ‘historical’, since they both cite the historical identity of the text’s author as the determining factor in the interpretation of the psalm. This interpretation asks the question: ‘what can this text refer to, considering the historical identity of its author?’ The arguments employed in Acts 2:22– 35 differ significantly from the arguments of Heb 4:6 – 10 and 7:11 (which chapter one argued were also forms of historical exegesis) since, rather than interpreting texts on the basis of their assumed time of writing, Luke makes the identity of the biblical author the decisive factor in his exegesis. The Christological argument in which these historical arguments feature begins by asserting a theological account of recent events concerning Jesus of Nazareth in Acts 2:22– 24. The account attempts to relate theological claims about Jesus’ identity and the role of God in Jesus’ miracles, death and resurrection, to the crowd’s own supposed knowledge of Jesus. Jesus’ miracles are said to have taken place as works of God ἐν μέσῳ ὑμῶν καθὼς αὐτοὶ οἴδατε. Likewise, it is said that the festal crowd had an active role in Jesus’ death, in accordance with the ‘will and foreknowledge’ of God.¹⁵⁴ It is unlikely that the phrase,

 The ‘historical’ nature of the exegesis of Ps 16:8 – 10 in the Pentecost speech has already been noted by Trull, ‘Peter’s Interpretation of Psalm 16,’ pp. 432 and 440. Trull suggests that the author of the speech intended to isolate what the psalm originally meant when spoken as prophecy by David. Cf. p. 440 ‘The death and decay of David did not change the sense or referent of the psalm passage. His tomb proved what was always true, that David did not speak of himself.’  The apparent anti-Semitism of Acts has been the subject of a significant amount of scholarly discussion. Jack T. Sanders, The Jews in Luke-Acts (London: SCM, 1987), pp. 233 – 255 suggests that this verse is not directed simply towards the Pentecost crowd, but rather to the whole of the Jewish people. This claim depends upon the symbolic nature of the Pentecost speech and its context, the notion that the scene itself represents the ‘gathering of Israel’. The specificity of the claims made about the crowd in the speech provide a problem for this theory. Dixon Slingerland, ‘The Composition of Acts: Some Redaction-Critical Observations,’ JAAR 56:1 (1988), pp. 99 – 13 suggests that the attitude towards the Jews in Luke-Acts is actually very complex, noting the possibility that Luke has failed to harmonise the distinctive and divergent attitudes reflected in his sources. However, much of the evidence Slingerland employs to suggest these distinct sources can be explained following the thesis of Robert C. Tannehill, ‘Israel in

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δυνάμεσι καὶ τέρασι καὶ σημείοις reflects an attempt to demonstrate the fulfilment of the Joel quotation. Again, this issue is complicated by the uncertain origins of the divergences of the quotation as it stands in Acts and the extant Old Greek readings. If Luke is prepared to edit the quotation to read σημεῖα ἐπὶ τῆς γῆς κάτω in Acts 2:19, why does he not insert δυνάμενα so that v.22 fits the quotation better? If Luke is happy to edit the quotation, why does he not remove references to signs in the heavens and the moon turning to blood which seem to undermine the correlation of Jesus’ miracles with those promised in the Joel quotation? If Luke intends v.22 to reflect the quotation (a quotation that he did not edit), why does he not omit δυνάμεσι in v.22? It seems most likely that the miracles of Jesus referred to in v.22, are intended to provide simple evidence of Jesus’ status before God rather than evidence that Jesus fulfils an aspect of the Joel quotation. It is the final Christological statement of Acts 2:22– 24 which proves to be the most significant for the Pentecost speech: Jesus is the one ὃν ὁ θεὸς ἀνέστησεν λύσας τὰς ὠδῖνας τοῦ θανάτου, καθότι οὐκ ἦν δυνατὸν κρατεῖσθαι αὐτὸν ὑπ’ αὐτοῦ. It is this statement which the two psalm quotations are employed to prove. It is clear from the γάρ of v.25 that the citation formula introducing Ps 16:8 – 11 is intended to support this statement. The use of David’s name in the citation formula is significant given the argument that is employed to explicate the meaning of the Psalm.¹⁵⁵ The Psalm citation itself is in the first person, describing the psalmist’s close proximity to ‘the Lord’ and the blessings which are the result of this proximity.¹⁵⁶ It is clear that these blessings are to be understood by the readers of Acts as equating to the eternal life of the speaker, though

Luke-Acts: A Tragic Story,’ JBL 104:1 (1985), pp. 69 – 85. Tannehill argues that Luke-Acts demonstrates a developing approach to the Jewish people as the narrative progresses.  Perhaps the εἰς αὐτόν of the formula is also significant. As Mark L. Strauss, The Davidic Messiah in Luke-Acts: The Promise and its Fulfillment in Lukan Christology (JSNTSup 110; Sheffield: Sheffield Academic Press, 1995), p. 137 points out, on one hand this phrase simply holds up Ps 16 as testimony to Jesus the coming Christ. On the other hand, it is equally possible that it presents the quotation as the actual speech of the coming Christ, spoken by David ‘on behalf of him’. Trull, ‘Peter’s Interpretation of Psalm 16,’ p. 438 argues that εἰς should not be taken to mean the same as περὶ, as in many translations, but should be understood simply as denoting the referent of the citation following the use of εἰς in Eph 5:32.  The citation ends one verse short of the end of the Psalm. Since the omitted clause (τερπνότητες ἐν τῇ δεξιᾷ σου εἰς τέλος) appears to support the interpretation offered in the Pentecost speech, Donald Juel, ‘Social Dimensions of Exegesis: The Use of Psalm 16 in Acts 2,’ CBQ 43 (1981), p. 546 suggests that this clause was in the mind of the author of the speech and that it provides the leitmotif ἐν τῇ δεξιᾷ linking this text to Ps 110:1 later in the speech.

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this is not necessarily obvious.¹⁵⁷ Of particular significance are the psalmist’s statements: μὴ σαλευθῶ (Acts 2:25)¹⁵⁸, ἡ σὰρξ μου κατασκηνώσει ἐπ’ ἐλπίδι (Acts 2:26), οὐκ ἐγκαταλείψεις τὴν ψυχήν μου εἰς ᾅδην¹⁵⁹ and οὐδὲ δώσεις τὸν ὅσιόν σου ἰδεῖν διαφθοράν (Acts 2:27) as well as ἐγνώρισάς μοι ὁδοὺς ζωῆς (Acts 2:28). The last of these, along with the notion of the psalmist standing in God’s presence in the first and final clauses of the citation, would scarcely bear the theological burden of signifying eternal life were the other statements just mentioned not read in such a way. However, the psalm is cited as though it clearly claims eternal life in the presence of God for the psalmist, considered to be David.¹⁶⁰ This is perhaps a reading of Ps 16:8 – 11 which was more obvious as the text was read within a 1st Century context, after a familiarity with Jewish apocalyptic literature. With this in mind, the situation in which the psalmist stands in the presence of God ceases to be the mundane palace or temple of

 Whilst the probable eschatological meaning of Ps 95:7– 11 appears to correspond quite well with the interpretation it receives in Heb 3 – 4, it is difficult to argue the same for Ps 16:8 – 11 here. C. A. Briggs, A Critical and Exegetical Commentary on the Book of Psalms (ICC; Edinburgh: T. & T. Clark, 1987), pp. 118 – 122 suggests that the psalm is primarily a expression of the psalmist’s desire for refuge from late or post-exilic apostasy. Briggs claims that v.11 ‘might imply resurrection if the Ps. were late enough…but the context does not suggest this; the path rather leads to the presence of God in the abode of the dead.’ However, Sigmund Mowinckel, The Psalms in Israel’s Worship (trans. D. R. Thomas; Oxford: Blackwell, 1962), p. 1.241 understands this ‘resurrection’ language as expressing how the psalmist’s ‘life literally hangs in the balance. He is alive, and yet he is dead.’ Alternatively, in a similarly ‘earthly’ interpretation, Arthur Weiser, The Psalms: A Commentary (London: SCM, 1962), pp. 172– 173 suggests that the psalm must be understood as serving a liturgical function in the ‘Covenant Festival’, because of which it naturally describes the psalmist’s delight in the presence of YHWH in the temple. Cf. HansJoachim Kraus, Psalms 1 – 59: A Continental Commentary (trans. Hilton C. Oswald; Minneapolis: Fortress, 1993), p. 235.Yet Gregory V. Trull, ‘An Exegesis of Psalm 16:10,’ BSac 161 (2004), pp. 304– 321 contends that whilst most of the psalm refers to the hope of its author, it is possible that ‫ חסידך‬in v.10 refers to the future hope of another in a manner similar to the interpretation of the Psalm in Acts 2 and 13.  Though this term does often have the sense of eternal immutability cf. Heb 12:28.  ᾌδην, picked up in Acts 2:31, represents not only the place of the dead, as akin to the Hebrew ‫ שאול‬which it translates in Old Greek almost exclusively, but also the dwelling place of demonic forces. Cf. Joel Marcus, ‘The Gates of Hades and the Keys of the Kingdom (Matt 16:18 – 19),’ CBQ 50 (1988), pp. 444– 446. As H. Bietenhard, ‘ᾅδης,’ NIDNTT 2 (1976), pp. 206 – 208 points out, ᾅδης may also be seen as extending beyond the dead through illness and suffering. Bietenhard also notes the distinctive treatment of ᾅδης in the New Testament which lacks any discussion of the ‘geography of the beyond’ common in Greek and rabbinic literature.  One need not assume that Luke considers the text Davidic simply because it belongs in the Psalter. The superscriptions of both the Massoretic Text as well as the Old Greek versions testify to the traditional association of Pss 16 and 110 with David.

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the text’s pre-exilic context and becomes the heavenly throne room of apocalyptic thought. The psalmist is then understood to enjoy God’s presence in a heavenly and eternal realm and a phrase like ἐγνώρισας μοι ὀδοὺς ζωῆς, which in the context of Wisdom traditions would refer to ethical guidance,¹⁶¹ becomes a sign of immortality. This interpretation stands in stark contrast to Midr. Ps. 16:10 which also interprets Ps 16 eschatologically, referring to the preservation of David’s body from decay in his tomb after death, awaiting his return to life as the Messiah. The interest of Ps 16:8 – 11 in eternal life (as perceived by Luke) is understood to be an exegetical problem when seen in the light of its assumed Davidic authorship. David’s hope of eternal life is contrasted by the known fact of David’s death in Acts 2:29.¹⁶² As Jervell notes, Eine solche “negative” Verwendung von David kommt im Neuen Testament nur bei Lukas vor. Die Psalmstelle kann nicht von David handeln, den er sah Verwesung: er starb und wurde begraben, wurde auch nicht von den Toten auferweckt, denn man kann noch heute sein Grab “in unserer Mitte” sehen. Sien Tod ist unbestreitbar.¹⁶³

It can be said μετὰ παρρησίας that David ἐτελεύτησεν καὶ ἐτάφη, καὶ τὸ μνῆμα αὐτοῦ ἔστιν ἐν ἡμῖν ἄχρι τῆς ἡμέρας ταύτης. The historical fact of David’s death, confirmed by the presence of his tomb ἐν ἡμῖν ἄχρι τῆς ἡμέρας ταύτης,¹⁶⁴ is seen to present a problem to the interpretation of Ps 16:8 – 11 as referring to David. Therefore, the statements about eternal life must refer to someone else. This logic is undoubtedly dependent upon Luke’s understanding of Scripture as

 The notion of ‫ ארח חיים‬or ὁδοὺς ζωῆς appears to belong exclusively to wisdom literature in the Old Testament. Cf. Prov 5:6 and 2:19 (‫)אחרות חיים‬. In these contexts the phrase appears to possess a purely ethical meaning as is probably the intention in Ps 16:11.  Conzelmann, Acts, p. 21 ‘David’s grave serves as proof that David has decomposed, thus the quotation cannot refer to him.’ Cf. Witherington, Socio-Rhetorical Commentary, p. 146 ‘Peter’s essential argument is that despite what many Jews might think, David in Psalm 16 could not have been speaking of his own (future) experience because he died and was buried a long time before the era of Jesus, and “his tomb is with us to this day.”’ Cf. Trull, ‘Peter’s Interpretation of Psalm 16,’ p. 440.  Jacob Jervell, Die Apostelgeschichte (Göttingen: Vanderhoeck & Ruprecht, 1998), p. 147.  David’s tomb was known to be on the slope of Ophel, near the pool of Siloam in Jerusalem. Cf. Neh 3:16 and Ant. 7.393, 13.249 and 16.179 – 183. Ernst Haenchen, The Acts of the Apostles: A Commentary (Oxford: Blackwell, 1971), p. 182 suggests that the use of the title πατριάρχης in this verse represents an attempt to soften the apparently disrespectful reference to David’s tomb. Cf. Conzelmann, Commentary, p. 21.

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prophecy demanding fulfilment.¹⁶⁵ For Luke, it is impossible for a prophecy to be mistaken. Once uttered, a prophecy must have a referent as it is God’s speech in prophecy which determines the future of the world.¹⁶⁶ Since the text must refer to a specific person who can speak of his own eternal life in the words used by Ps 16:8 – 11, the speech proceeds to explain how this may be the case. It does this by attempting to establish the psalm as prophecy on the basis of its author’s identity and purpose. David’s death leaves Ps 16:8 – 11 open to interpretation, since what was presumably the dominant interpretation of this text is seen as no longer viable. The discussion of David’s identity serves to provide a clear new interpretation of the text as referring to Jesus of Nazareth. The identity of David is established in v.30. David is said to be a prophet and is said to have known about a promise from God that one of his descendants would sit upon his throne.¹⁶⁷ At this point another text or tradition is alluded to.¹⁶⁸ These two notions about David are what enable him to speak Ps 16:8 – 11 as prophecy.¹⁶⁹ This is clear from the participial form of v.30 which leads to the aorist verb ἐλάλησεν: προφήτης οὖν ὐπάρχων καὶ εἰδώς…προϊδὼν ἐλάλησεν περὶ τῆς ἀναστάσεως τοῦ Χριστοῦ. David the prophet and recipient of a promise speaks of the future. This sentence is particularly interesting since it uses a reconstructed account of David, employing traditions about David that were popular in the 1st Century, to interpret the psalm. The predictive element of prophecy is emphasised as the language of the psalm and is employed to proclaim the resurrection of the Christ in v.31. In Psalm 16, David is un-

 Jacob Jervell, The Theology of the Acts of the Apostles (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1996), pp. 63 – 64. ‘The centre of Scripture Luke locates in its prophetic aspect; this is true of the prophetic as phenomenon as well as of its content. The prophetic is to be found in all writings of Scripture, in the writings of Moses as well as in the psalms and the prophets.’  Strauss, The Davidic Messiah, p. 138 ‘if David did not fulfil the Psalm, someone else must have.’ Gregory V. Trull, ‘Views on Peter’s use of Psalm 16,’ p. 205 contends here that Peter wishes to argue for more than a theologically motivated sensus plenior, but aims to interpret the text in a more secure historical basis of shared knowledge about the person of David.  It is not that clear to whom αὐτοῦ refers in this verse. The throne could be David’s or God’s. The implication, however, of the tradition of 2 Sam 7:16, Ps 132:11, 4QFlor 1:7– 13, 4QpPs 37 is that αὐτοῦ refers to David.  Most probably Ps 132;11. Strauss, The Davidic Messiah, pp. 35 – 74 offers a helpful overview the messianic reading of the ‘Davidic Promise’, examining 4 Ezra, 1 Enoch and Pss Sol. as well as Pre-Lukan Christian texts such as 2 Tim 2:8 and Rom 1:3 – 4.  Joseph Fitzmyer, ‘David, “Being therefore a Prophet…”(Acts 2:30)’, CBQ 34:3 (1972), p. 332 notes that it is David’s identity as a prophet that enables him to refer to the future in Ps 16. Fitzmyer goes on in this study to explore the unusual notion of David as a prophet, examining Ep Barn 12:10, Heb 11:32, Ant. 6.8.2 and various Dead Sea Scrolls. These possible backgrounds to the concept in Acts are discussed below.

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derstood to be saying that the Christ οὔτε ἐγκατελείφθη εἰς ᾅδην οὔτε ἡ σὰρξ αὐτοῦ εἶδεν διαφθοράν. These words are intended to invoke the language of the psalm quotation, employing certain words from Acts 2:26 – 27.¹⁷⁰ The slightly abstract Christ of v.31 is claimed to be τοῦτον τὸν Ἰησοῦν in v.32, who is again said to have been raised from death by God. This is perhaps another example of the Lukan desire to demonstrate correlation between Scripture and event, given that the speech claims in v.31 that Ps 16:8 – 11 predicts the resurrection of the coming Christ, an event it posits in v.24. By this point in the speech, a text which v.29 suggests was previously thought to be about David has become a prophecy of the Christ: Jesus of Nazareth. This appears to reflect a particularly Lukan emphasis upon the predictive nature of Scripture. The speech moves from the correlation of perceived resurrection in the psalm and the resurrection of Jesus to proclaim the reign of Jesus in v33. It is unlikely that the description of Jesus’ heavenly session is the result of applying more of Ps 16: 11 to the identity of Jesus, having concluded that Jesus fulfils one aspect of the psalm’s prediction about the Christ. The language of session τῇ δεξιᾷ…τοῦ θεοῦ owes more to the quotation of Ps 110:1 in the next verse.¹⁷¹ The session of Christ in v.33 is primarily used to explain the origins of the apostles’ unusual speech in the Pentecost scene and possibly also to posit the inspiration of the Pentecost speech itself.¹⁷² The claim that from the right hand of God, Jesus has ‘poured out’ the Holy Spirit from the Father ὃ ὑμεῖς καὶ βλέπετε καὶ ακούετε provides a link back to the beginning of the speech where the Pentecost scene is also attributed to the Spirit of God ‘poured out’ on humankind. The ‘proof’ of the session of Christ is provided by the quotation

 There is a much greater resemblance between v.31 and the psalm quotation in Codex Ephraemi and Codex Laudianus, supported by minuscule 33, which reads οὒτε ἐγκατελείφθη ἡ ψυχή αὐτου εἰς ᾅδην. These texts clearly represent attempts to make v.31 reflect the quotation, enhancing the allusion to the quotation in the speech. However, this does not explain why ψυχή is omitted. Again, one is left with the problem of our relative ignorance of Old Greek textual traditions.  Conzelmann, Commentary, p. 21 rightly notes that τῇ δεξιᾷ is a local rather than instrumental dative, as in Odes Sol. 8:21, and must therefore be understood as referring to Christ’s heavenly session. Cf. Hay, Glory at the Right Hand, p. 71. Hay (p. 53 ff.) also offers a helpful survey of uses of the spatial ‘right hand’ in the Hebrew Bible and Ancient Judaism suggesting that it typically represents a place of special honour and superiority.  Strauss, The Davidic Messiah, p. 139 claims that Ps 110:1 is used primarily as a proof for the resurrection of Christ, though the focus of 2:33, which provides the justification for the quotation, addresses the strange nature of the Pentecost events. Hay, Glory at the Right Hand, pp. 70 – 71 appears to allow both functions of the text here, though primarily sees it as supporting God’s vindication of Jesus the crucified victim.

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of Ps 110:1 and its accompanying argument. The argument here is essentially the same as that of Acts 2:29. A known fact about the life of David, the assumed author of the quotation, is used negatively to limit the meaning of that quotation. In this case, Ps 110:1, which speaks rather enigmatically of the heavenly enthronement of someone said to be the author’s ‘Lord’,¹⁷³ is claimed not to be about David (whom one might suppose that this text was popularly assumed to be about) since David is known not to have ascended to the heavens. Therefore, following the same logic as vv.29 – 32, Ps 110:1 must refer to someone else.¹⁷⁴ Though it is not stated explicitly, the audience is left to infer that this text is also a prophecy that finds its fulfilment in Jesus of Nazareth. The history of David, as the assumed author of Ps 16, is employed in two ways: Firstly, this history is employed negatively to demonstrate that, since David died and consequently did not ascend to heaven, the text cannot refer to him. Secondly, history is employed positively as the identity of David as a prophet of the past allows the psalm to be understood as prophecy referring to someone coming after David. Whilst it is obvious that the understanding of ‘history’ is not that of post-Εnlightenment historical study, nor does it reflect later concern for ‘objectivity’ or rigorous investigation of primary sources, details (thought to be true) of the life of a biblical author are employed to shed light on the meaning of his text. This method is perhaps analogous to scholarly attempts to understand the Pauline Epistles by advancing a detailed historical study of

 Though this enigmatic reading is only properly available in Greek. The Hebrew ‫נאם יהוה‬ ‫ לאדני‬does not pose the same theological difficulty. Interestingly, as Hay, Glory at the Right Hand, p. 21 points out, ‘it seems certain that originally the OG did not translate the divine name as kyrios but retained the tetragrammaton in Hebrew or Greek letters instead.’ Hay later (p. 105) suggests that the title κυρίος in Ps 110:1 provided the primary reason for the text’s inclusion in the Pentecost speech. ‘Acts 2.36 marks the climax of an argument that Jesus is both κυρίος and Christ; and that conclusion immediately follows a quotation of Ps 110.1a-c. Since the title κυρίος is used of Jesus in Acts 2.20 – 21 where Joel’s prophecy of the outpouring of the Holy Spirit is quoted, one may find in that prophecy and Ps 110:1…substantiation of the crucial nexus of thought underlying the entire speech: the connection between the exaltation of Jesus as lord and the coming of the Spirit. Thus Acts 2 reflects an early conviction that the psalm verse proves the legitimacy of entitling Jesus κυρίος.’ On the Old Greek translation of the divine name cf. Martin Rösel, ‘The Reading and Translation of the Divine Name in the Masoretic Tradition and the Greek Pentateuch’, JSOT 31:4 (2007), pp. 411– 428 and Larry W. Hurtado, ‘The Origin of the Nomina Sacra: A Proposal,’ JBL 117:4 (1998), pp. 655 – 673.  Roloff, Apostelgeschichte, p. 60. ‘David ist nicht zum Himmel aufgerfahren, er kann also die Aussage seines Psalms, die von der Erhöhung des “Herrn” spricht, nicht im Blick auf sich selbst gemacht haben. Deren wahre Bedeutung enthüllt sich also vom Weg Jesu her.’

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Paul¹⁷⁵ or the attempt to claim an historical figure as the author of Hebrews in order to gain greater insight into the meaning of that text.¹⁷⁶ The arguments employed to explicate Pss 16:8 – 11 and 110:1 must be understood as primitive and theological attempts at establishing authorial intention. Of course, authorial intention is not pursued openly for its own sake but rather is a tool for the proclamation of the Pentecost kerygma. Whilst David’s intention is never stated as an object of enquiry, a question can be discerned behind the treatment of each quotation: ‘what can this text be said to mean given that a certain amount is known about its author?’ It is not simply that David uttered a text that he did not understand. According to the speech, David spoke as a prophet whose purpose is to speak of the future, and he spoke of the Christ who was to come as someone who is said to be aware of God’s promise of such a Christ (Acts 2:30 – 31). Moreover, it is impossible to claim that the speech merely dismisses the application of this text to David, as though it were simply an oracle of God devoid of original context, since David appears to be intimately connected with the production of these texts, if not in writing then at least as his own speech. The claim that David was a prophet primarily serves to establish not so much whether Ps 16:8 – 11 refers to David as the one who stands eternally in the presence of God, but rather the nature of the text itself as prophecy about the Christ. The dismissal of the interpretation of Ps 16:8 – 11 as referring to David is achieved as an initial step towards the ultimate goal of Christological proclamation by means of identifying the quotation as scriptural prophecy. It could be that the focus of these arguments upon David as author is due to the first person speech in which both psalm quotations are written. This first person speech naturally invites consideration of the one who speaks in the text and perhaps invites the speech’s interest in authorship.

 Good examples of this sort of literature are provided by Martin Hengel, The Pre-Christian Paul (London: SCM, 1991) and E. P. Sanders, Paul and Palestinian Judaism (Philadelphia: Fortress, 1977). The quest to locate Paul firmly in his first-century Palestinian context lies at the heart of the work of the New Perspective on Paul school.  An extensive bibliography of works addressing the issue of the authorship of Hebrews is offered by Lane, Hebrews, pp.xlvii-xlix. Lane’s own suggestion (pp.cxliv-cl) that the author of Hebrews ought to be understood as belonging to the Hellenistic school or faction witnessed to in Acts 7 is significant element in his interpretation of Hebrews.

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2.3.3 Acts 2:36 & 38 – 39: Paraenetic It is hard to determine where the Pentecost speech ends. Whilst the continuous discourse of Peter ends in Acts 2:36, the paraenetic in this verse appears to resume in vv.38 – 39 following a question from the crowd.¹⁷⁷ Moreover, v.40 continues to relate the teaching of the speech and even cites a direct quotation from teaching that is said to continue after the speech proper.¹⁷⁸ The initial paraenetic of the speech in v.36 draws a conclusion from the discussion of the two psalms in the preceding verses: ἀσφαλῶς οὖν γινωσκέτω πᾶς οἶκος Ἰσραὴλ ὅτι καὶ κύριον αὐτὸν καὶ χριστὸν ἐποίησεν ὁ θεός, τοῦτον τὸν Ἰησοῦν ὃν ὑμεῖς ἐσταυρώσατε. Scripture, according to the speech, has shown that the Christ promised to David and exalted to the heavens to God’s right hand is the man Jesus of Nazareth, known to have been recently crucified. The imperative γινωσκέτω implies more than mere mental assent, requesting instead a fundamental realignment of the ‘house of Israel’ behind God’s chosen king. This represents the dominant model of human salvation in Acts, that of recognising and associating with the Christ, after repentance, and standing under his authority.¹⁷⁹ Salvation is made available through the name of Jesus, as the Christ, the one who is seen to hold the power and authority of God. The psalm texts quoted and discussed in Acts 2:22– 35 have served to advance this significant element of the theology of Acts by seeking to demonstrate that Jesus is the Christ who continues to live and reign in the presence of God. The paraenetic element of the speech continues with the exhortation of vv.38 – 39. These verses also seek to request action on the basis of the argument of vv.22 – 35. The crowd are urged to be baptised ἐπὶ τῷ ὀνόματι Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ εἰς ἄφεσιν τῶν ἁμαρτιῶν ὑμῶν, reflecting the preeminent status of Jesus as the Christ and his role as judge at the

 Pervo, Acts, p. 85 ‘The first verse [Acts 2:39] is a paraenetic reinforcement of the preceding verse, with a specific reference to “the promise,” evoking 1:4 in general and 2:30 in particular.’  G. R. H. Horsley, ‘Speeches and Dialogue in Acts,’ NTS 32 (1986), pp. 609 – 614 suggests that such interruptions which provide unclear speech endings are a distinctive feature of the speeches of Acts. Cf. Soards, Speeches, p. 37 and Haenchen, p. 183. However, Daniel Lynwood Smith, The Rhetoric of Interruption: Speech-Making, Turn-Taking, and Rule-Breaking in Luke Acts and Ancient Greek Narrative (BZNW 193; Berlin: De Gruyter, 2012), p. 220 does not regard the question of the crowd as a interruption since it ‘sets up Peter’s climactic call to repentance in 2:38 – 39’.  Bovon, Luke the Theologian, pp. 281– 282 summarises this well in his analysis of scholarship on the subject. ‘Acts interprets the death and resurrection of Jesus from a more christological than soteriological perspective. The resurrection only confirms Jesus’ messiahship. Thanks to his title “Messiah,” Jesus is able to transmit pardon. Now the resurrected One also has the power to bestow on every believer, on every baptized person, the Holy Spirit, the great eschatological gift announced by the prophets.’

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right hand of God. Likewise, the promise λήμψεσθε τὴν δωρεὰν τοῦ ἁγίου πνεύματος reflects the ability of the exalted Christ to pour out the Holy Spirit upon humankind, stated in v.33, and perhaps to a lesser extent the claim that the Apostles speak in the power of the Holy Spirit that was advanced from the Joel quotation.¹⁸⁰ This reference to the Joel quotation is likely given the phrase ὅσους ἂν προσκαλέσηται κύριος ὁ θεὸς ἡμῶν in the next verse which is an undeniable reference to the use of Joel at the beginning of the Pentecost speech.

2.4 The Hermeneutics of Acts 13:26 – 41 A nearly identical argument to the negative historical arguments of Acts 2:29 and 34 is employed in the Pisidian-Antioch speech Acts 13:26 – 41. By this point in the narrative of Acts, Luke has moved away from a principal concern with events in Jerusalem and has begun to focus on the ministry of Paul in gentile cities.¹⁸¹ The speech itself takes place within the context of Sabbath day gathering in a Synagogue after the scriptural readings. Naturally, this setting invites comparison with genres of synagogue homily.¹⁸² However, of all the speeches in Acts, this speech appears to employ the widest range of exegetical techniques. The speech begins by relating a re-written biblical narrative, in a similar style to that of Stephen’s speech. It also employs a range of scriptural proofs, one of which is interpreted with an argument similar to that of Acts 2:29, others of which are simply appropriated on the basis of their correlation with what the speech claims about the identity and status of Jesus, much like the use of Ps 118:22 in Acts 4:11. The final text in this sermon is simply incorporated into the paraenetic.

2.4.1 Acts 13:16 – 22: The history of Israel to David The first part of the Pisidian Antioch speech provides a summary of biblical narrative from God’s election of Israel to the appointment of David as king. As Jervell notes, the Lukan tendency to narrate the history of Israel as a means of in-

 Pervo, Acts, p. 85., Barrett, Acts of the Apostles, p. 156 and Johnson, Acts of the Apostles, p. 58.  The growth of the Gospel in Acts broadly follows the promise of Jesus in Acts 1:8: καὶ ἔσεσθέ μου μάρτυρες ἐν τε Ἰερουσαλὴμ καὶ ἐν πάσῃ τῇ Ἰουδαίᾳ καὶ Σαμαρείᾳ καὶ ἕως ἐσχάτου τῆς γῆς.  Cf. J. W. Bowker, ‘Speeches in Acts: A Study in Proem and Yelammedenu Form,’ NTS 14:1 (1967), pp. 96 – 111.

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troducing the principal subject or charge of a speech, is the result of Luke’s view of salvation-history which places Jesus at the climax of God’s dealings with Israel.¹⁸³ The speech opens with certain formulaic characteristics including the standing of the speaker and the address ἄνδρες ἀδελφοί (cf. Acts 2:22 and 3:12). Certain similarities of the speech with that of Stephen’s in Acts 7:2– 53 are immediately obvious. Both initiate a narrative of Israel’s history beginning with the patriarchs. In each case, the narrative begins with the action of God: ὁ θεὸς τῆς δόξης ὤφθη τῷ πατρὶ ἡμῶν Ἀβραὰμ (Acts 7:2) and ὁ θεὸς τοῦ λαοῦ τούτου Ἰσραὴλ ὲξελέξατο τοὺς πατέρας ἠμῶν (Acts 13:17). Of course this similarity poses the well-known problem relating to the origins of the speeches in Acts, suggesting some degree of literary relationship between the two speeches. As will be shown below, Stephen’s speech is not the only speech in Acts which the Pisidian Antioch speech suggests a debt to. As noted above, however, it is impossible to say whether the interdependence of the speeches is a result of Luke’s own limited creativity in writing the speeches, the specific kerygmatic traditions which constituted Luke’s sources for the creation of the speeches or, in fact, the historical interdependence of the speeches themselves as utterances of the Apostles (after all, Luke claims that Paul was present to hear Stephen’s speech in Acts 7:58 and 8:1).¹⁸⁴ The narrative of Israel’s history in these verses employs several allusions to Scripture in order to present an entirely positive account of the past.¹⁸⁵ The overtly positive nature of this narrative is clear when compared to that of Stephen’s speech. In each speech, narrative is employed for entirely different reasons. In Stephen’s speech the narrative highlights Israel’s failures, culminating in its failure to recognise the Christ. In the Pisidian Antioch speech the narrative serves to

 Jervell, ‘Future of the Past’, p. 106. ‘Unlike other New Testament authors, history means more to Luke than eschatology. Everything in the Church comes from the past and eschatology confirms history. It is not sufficient for Luke simply to presuppose the history of Israel until the coming of the Messiah, but he must tell his readers about the meaning included in his presupposition.’  Here, Soards, Speeches, pp. 148 ff. suggests that the similarities between the two speeches are a result of the influence of the Septuagint, in particular the book of 2 Esdras 19. However, it is not that clear how the evidence Soards cites supports this claim. The possible similarity appears to be thematic, rather than literary.  Acts 13:18 (καὶ ὡς τεσσερακονταετῆ χρόνον ἐτροποφόρησεν αὐτούς ἐν τῇ ἐρήμῳ) can still be taken as a positive statement about God, rather than a direct complaint about Israel as one finds in Stephen’s speech. This interpretation is probable given that the speech attempts to proclaim a narrative of God’s deeds rather than a narrative of Israel’s failure. Of course, if the variant reading of ἐτροποφόρησεν as ἐτροφοφόρησεν offered by P74, A, C*, E, Ψ etc., is correct, there can be no question that this narrative presents an entirely positive history of Israel.

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proclaim David the king, a type of Christ, as the highest point in an essentially glorious history. In each narrative of Israel’s history, a view of history as essentially linear and teleological is suggested, history which is seen to be governed by the promises and acts of God. The narrative of Israel’s history reaches its climax with the appointment of David as king.¹⁸⁶ David’s status within this narrative is confirmed by the inclusion of direct speech, probably understood as a scriptural quotation, instead of an allusion, to describe him.¹⁸⁷ The narrative ends with David since David is central to the purposes of the speech. The promise of the Christ is a promise relating to one of David’s descendants (v.23) and is understood as referring to Jesus (v.34). The identity of David is also significant in the speech because it determines how Ps 16:10 is understood in the speech. The fact that David is seen as the climax of God’s dealings with the fathers serves to justify the significance he has for the proclamation of the Christ in the speech.

2.4.2 Acts 13:23 – 33: The promise of the Christ and its fulfilment The narrative of vv.16 – 22 serves to introduce the figure of David, emphasising his significance as the culmination of Israel’s history before Jesus. The introduction of David is focused upon the proclamation of Jesus as the saviour, the promised son of David, presented in v.23.¹⁸⁸ Before explaining the fulfilment of this promise, the speech describes the ministry of John the Baptist in vv.24– 25. It is unclear why John is treated here. It could be that John the Baptist’s ministry is employed to highlight the significance of Jesus, in which case John is included as a prophet of the Christ. It could also be that the speech addresses a specific

 Jervell, Theology, p. 67. Cf. Evald Lövestam, Son and Saviour: A Study of Acts 13,32 – 37. With an Appendix: ‘Son of God’ in the Synoptic Gospels (Copenhagen: Lund, 1961), p. 84.  This direct speech is introduced with the formula καὶ εἶπεν μαρτυρήσας similar to that used in other New Testament literature (cf. Heb 2:6) to indicate a scriptural quotation. The direct speech appears to be heavily dependent upon both Ps 89:21 and 1 Sam 13:14 and was probably understood by Luke to have been a quotation.  Jervell, Theology, p. 67. ‘Historical survey (13:17– 25) and kerygma (13:26 – 31) are so interwoven that the kerygma is understood as a link in the history of Israel. Israel’s history is narrated in such a fashion that it is orientated to David as its culmination (v. 22); of David’s posterity (v. 22), God has brought to Israel a saviour (v. 23); the contemporary hearers, the Israel of today, are given the sure promises or words of David (v. 34); and so we have the negative proof from Scripture (vv. 35 – 7): David saw corruption (v. 36).’

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‘heresy’ known to Luke regarding John the Baptist and also hinted at in Priscilla and Aquila’s correction of Apollos in Acts 18:24– 26.¹⁸⁹ In vv.26 – 33 the speech describes the death and resurrection of Jesus. The most important idea in these verses is that the events of Jesus’ death and resurrection are the fulfilment of what God has promised in Scripture. It is unclear why this proclamation of fulfilment, with its renewed address ἄνδρες ἀδελφοί, begins with a reference to ὁ λόγος τῆς σωτηρίας ταύτης, since no λόγος has been mentioned so far in the speech. It seems most likely that ὁ λόγος τῆς σωτηρίας ταύτης refers to the promised σωτῆρα of v.23, though it could refer reflexively to the speech itself as an example of the message of salvation. If v.26 is in fact a reference to v.23, then the claim of v.26 is one of promise fulfilment. Jesus the promised saviour has been proclaimed.¹⁹⁰ This reading is supported by the assertion of the next verse linking the people of Jerusalem’s ignorance of the prophets, though read every Sabbath, to their condemnation of Jesus. It is interesting that it is τὰς φωνὰς τῶν προφητῶν which is seen to testify to the promised σωτῆρα. Perhaps this reflects Luke’s understanding of all Scripture as essentially prophetic or simply his assumption that it is the prophets who proclaim the Christ most clearly. Whilst the citations of Scripture which appear as proofs of the speech’s claims in vv.33 – 37 come from both the psalms and the prophets it is likely that Luke understood the psalms to be prophetic due to his understanding of David as a prophet (cf. Acts 2:30). Whilst the Scriptures proclaimed the Christ, they also predicted his condemnation, a condemnation seen to be fulfilled by the Jerusalem community in v.27. Scriptural promise is seen by Luke here to determine contemporary events in a variety of ways. However, whilst it is clear that Luke understands the events of Jesus’ death and resurrection to be precisely determined by Scripture, it is not clear whether this is part of a wider theology of history. Certainly, the reference in v.29 to πάντα τὰ περὶ αὐτοῦ γεγραμμένα refers particularly to Jesus’ death, but is the fulfilment provided by Jesus’ death here simply fulfilment of the last prophesied events in the life of Jesus, rather than the idea that all that is written about the Christ concerns his death?¹⁹¹ The concern with promise-fulfilment in these verses is continued

 Barrett, Acts of the Apostles, p. 639. Cf. Jn 1:19 – 27 and Lk 7:24– 27.  Lövestam, Son and Saviour, p. 85 suggests that the use of the title σωτῆρα here is closely connected to the exaltation imagery of the Pisidian Antioch speech as in Acts 5:30 ff. Jesus is understood as Saviour due to his session and authority.  Pervo, Acts, p. 338 suggests that this strange claim reflects a desire for clarity. Barrett, Acts, p. 641 suggests that this verse must be understood as referring to the same unknown scriptural texts as Acts 3:18.

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in vv.32– 33 with the statement τὴν πρὸς τοὺς πατέρας ἐπαγγελίαν γενομένην ὅτι ταύτην ὁ θεὸς ἐκπεπλήρωκεν.

2.4.3 Acts 13:33 – 37: The fulfilment of Scripture is proven by Scripture The claims made in vv.23 – 33 that the ancient promises of Scripture have been fulfilled are substantiated in vv.33 – 37 as three scriptural texts are introduced. The three scriptural citations are employed in order to demonstrate that Scripture prophesies the resurrection of the promised saviour of Israel, a prophecy which finds its fulfilment in Jesus whose resurrection is described as an observable event in recent history (vv.30 – 31). The quotations, which are taken from Ps 2:7, Isa 55:3 and Ps 16:10, bear a clear resemblance to extant Old Greek sources for these texts.¹⁹² Whilst there are clear motifs which run through the texts and their accompanying argument, such as the use of second person personal pronouns and the noun διαφθοράν (vv.34, 35, 36, 37), the logic of the argument is by no means clear.¹⁹³ Ps 2:7 is introduced to support the claim that God has raised Jesus from the dead ὡς καὶ ἐν τῷ ψαλμῷ γέγραπται τῷ δευτέρῳ. It is hard to see how the quotation supports the assertion, since it contains no clear reference to life after death. Perhaps the notion of divine sonship in the citation is understood as implying divine life for the one to whom it refers. This interpretation also requires an understanding of Ps 2:7 as prophecy: as a promise of God referring to the future, an understanding which appears to be typically Lukan. Perhaps the omission of κύριος εἰπεν πρός με before this quotation is a significant factor in this interpretation. Ps 110:1 appears to make a similar claim about its speaker, yet the Pentecost speech is able to interpret it as not referring to David largely aided by the allusive phrase εἶπεν ὁ κύριος τῷ κυριῷ μου which allows the text to refer to someone other than its acknowledged author. If κύριος εἰπεν πρός με was included in Acts 13:33 it would be difficult for the  Codex Bezae includes Ps 2:8 after Ps 2:7, though this reading is not widely supported. The apparent change of οὐδέ, seen in extant Old Greek texts and Ps 16:10 in Acts 2:27, to οὐ in Acts 13:35 is quite natural given the omission of the preceding clause and does not suggest any alternative source for this quotation. The quotation from Isa 55:3 in Acts 13:34 is much more problematic, however, and appears to resemble a paraphrase of the extant Old Greek versions. The phrase καὶ διαθήσομαι ὑμῖν διαθήκην αἰώνιον, τὰ ὅσια Δαυὶδ τὰ πιστά appears to be reduced to δώσω ὑμῖν τὰ ὅσια Δαυὶδ τὰ πιστά with the insertion of δώσω (assuming that ὅτι introduces the quotation in Acts 13:34. NA 27 begins the quotation with ὑμῖν which seems somewhat improbable).  Soards, Speeches, p. 86 describes the exegetical argument as ‘elaborate’, noting particularly the difficulty surrounding its definition as ‘proof from prophecy.’

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speech to claim that the perceived promise in Ps 2:7 referred to anyone other than David. Of course, Ps 2:7 could have been cited as an abstract and disincarnate oracle, but the unusually precise reference to ‘the second psalm’ and the speech’s interest in David makes this unlikely. The use of Isa 55:3 in Acts 13:34 is no less complicated.¹⁹⁴ The text, introduced with οὕτως εἴρηκεν ὅτι, appears to be cited in support of the claim that God ἀνέστησεν [Ἰησοῦν] ἐκ νεκρῶν μηκέτι μέλλοντα ὑποστέφειν εἰς διαφθοράν. The citation, which reflects the unusual structure of the Hebrew Vörlage behind its source, also contains no reference to the promised saviour’s preservation from decay and elevation from death. How then does it support the assertion for which it is cited? Initially it must be noted that the quotation operates within the argument in quite a different manner from the other quotations in this part of the speech since it denotes a promise made, not to a singular promised saviour, but to a group of people. This is clear from the use the second person plural ὑμῖν. But what are the holy and faithful promises which pertain to David? The status of the noun Δαυίδ as a loan word, which on this occasion cannot reflect a particular case, makes it difficult to answer this question. If one follows the Massoretic Text of Isa 55:3, it seems likely that the clause quoted in Acts 13:34 is an explanation of the nature of the covenant to be cut in the preceding clause. It is that God’s faithful loving kindness to David is the substance of the covenant YHWH will cut with his people. The covenant promise is a promise of a Davidic king.¹⁹⁵ If this understanding of Isa 55:3 is in evidence in the Pisidian Antioch speech, the citation is employed to demonstrate that God has promised to Israel a king who is descended from David. However, this still fails to account for the citation’s failure to mention the ideas of preservation from decay and death for which it is quoted. In comparison with the first two quotations in this section of the Pisidian Antioch speech, the use of Ps 16:10 in vv. 35 – 37 is much clearer. The citation formula διότι καὶ ἐν ἑτέρῳ λέγει indicates that this part of Ps 16:10 is quoted in order to support the same assertion for which Isa 55:3 was quoted. Ps 16:10 re Lövestam, Son and Saviour, pp. 48 ff. offers a useful discussion of the problems relating to this quotation and some scholarly solutions suggested prior to the 1960 s. Lövestam suggests that the quotation must have been clear to the audience of Acts and that it should therefore not be understood simply as a supplement to the clearer quotation from Ps 16:10.  Claus Westerman, Isaiah 40 – 66: A Commentary (trans. David M. G Stalker; London: SCM, 1969), pp. 283 – 284 and John D. W. Watts, Isaiah 34 – 66: Revised (WBC 24; Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 2005), p. 817. However, the genitive of the Old Greek is somewhat more ambiguous and could be subjective, meaning that God’s loving kindness to David is the reason for the covenant. Cf. John Goldingay & David Payne, Isaiah 40 – 55: Volume II (ICC; London: T. & T. Clark, 2006), p. 372 who nevertheless doubt this possibility.

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lates to this assertion in a much more obvious way, particularly because the term διαφθοράν which appears in the assertion can be found in the quotation and, indeed, can probably be said to have originated with the quotation, given the importance it will assume in the argument subsequent to the quotation.¹⁹⁶ Whereas Acts 2:29 – 31 discusses Ps 16 in two sentences at the very least, Acts 13:36 – 37 discusses the text in a single sentence. Whilst the discussion in Acts 13:36 – 37 is shorter, its essential μὲν…δὲ structure reflects the longer argument of Acts 2:29 – 31. In each case the negative fact of David’s death is presented followed by the assertion of the text’s Christological meaning.¹⁹⁷ The only structural difference between the arguments is that Acts 2:29 – 31 employs an intermediate argument to show that the Christological interpretation offered in the speech is a consequence of the historical circumstances of the dead author, David. The Pisidian Antioch speech does not share the interest of the Pentecost speech in how the identity of David defines the nature of the text, enabling it to be understood as a prophecy concerning the Christ. The Pisidian Antioch speech is only interested in David’s identity as part of a negative argument (similar to that of Acts 2:29) used to limit the meaning of the psalm so that it could not be considered to refer to David. The two negative arguments (Acts 2:29 and 13:36), whilst both attempting to communicate the same idea, are actually quite different, to the extent that no literary similarity between them can be claimed. Only the Pisidian Antioch example of this negative argument includes a direct reference to Ps 16. Whilst the Pentecost argument gives David a title and also supports its assertion that he has been buried by referring to his tomb, these features are both lacking in the Pisidian Antioch argument. Even the central assertion that David ετέθη/προσετέθη is slightly different in each case. The Pisidian Antioch speech offers a much more elaborate version of this claim: David is buried with his fathers after serving God in his generation and ἐκοιμήθη. In the Pentecost speech, David simply dies and is buried. Whilst the arguments of Acts 2:29 and 13:36 appear to be the same, stylistically they are very different. However, there is also a basic similarity in the feature of the psalm citation which is picked up in each argument. The longer treatment of Ps 16 in Acts 2:29 – 31 employs two phrases from the citation in an edited form in the latter half of v.31, whereas the discussion of Ps 16 in Acts 13:36 – 37 employs only one phrase from the psalm, though it

 Though, in the speech, after the quotation διαφθοράν always appears with forms of the verb ἰδεῖν, whereas it does not in v. 34 before the quotation.  And as Lövestam, Son and Saviour, p. 83 points out, in each case that Ps 16 is treated in Acts it is accompanied by an expression of God’s covenant with David. Lövestam suggests that the psalm’s assumed relation to this promise reflects a primitive and widespread association, noting that nowhere in the New Testament is it cited without reference to this promise.

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uses it twice, once in each verse. The single phrase employed twice in Acts 13:36 – 37, εἶδεν διαφθοράν, is one of the two used in 2:31. The conjunction of Ps 16 with a highly unusual negative argument employing the historical death and burial of David both in Acts 2:29 and 13:36 cannot be a coincidence. Having noted that, it is hard to determine the precise relationship between the two arguments. The Pisidian Antioch speech could be both an apocopated version of the argument of the Pentecost speech, considering its shorter citation of Ps 16 and its use of only one of the two Davidic arguments employed in the Pentecost speech, yet it can also be seen to offer a more developed version of the Pentecost argument, considering the longer description of David’s death and burial in 13:36. What is clear though, is that both arguments have one thing in common: they both claim that Ps 16 does not refer to David on the basis of what is known about the historical circumstances of David’s life and death. In each case, as the possible interpretation of Ps 16 as referring to David is undermined, a Christological meaning of the text is asserted.

2.4.4 Acts 13:38 – 41: Paraenetic The Pisidian Antioch speech closes with a paraenetic that follows closely from the argument of vv.32 – 37 yet which also introduces a new idea into the speech: that the risen Jesus provides the righteousness that the Law of Moses failed to provide.¹⁹⁸ The imperative phrase γνωστὸν οὖν ἔστω ὑμῖν makes it clear that this paraenetic is to be understood as the result of the preceding argument,  Jervell, Theology, p. 60 does not admit this verse as providing a negative statement about the Law. Jervell characterises the Lukan treatment of the Law as overwhelmingly positive, noting the distinctly positive terminology used of the Law in Luke-Acts (p. 55). Moreover, Jervell argues that Luke intended to defend the early Church from the accusation (reflected in Acts 6:11, 13 and 21:21) that it rejected observance of the Law. With this in mind, Jervell suggests that the inability of the Law to provide righteousness refers only to its inability to provide the same to Gentiles. However, whilst this reading might suit the Gentile context of the Pisidian Antioch speech, it is clear from the forms of address used of the crowd in the speech as well as the setting of the speech in the synagogue, that the speech is to be understood as addressed to a Jewish audience for whom Jervell’s interpretation would be irrelevant as part of a paraenetic. A helpful discussion of the status of law in Luke-Acts is offered by Joseph B. Tyson, ‘Torah and Prophets in LukeActs: Temporary or Permanent?’ SBLSP (1992), pp. 539 – 548. Tyson notes the apparently complex nature of the references to the law in Luke-Acts and reaches the conclusion that ‘in Luke-Acts, the authority of Torah and prophets is permanent in the sense that they function Christologically; but their authority as governing the lives of believers ceased with John the Baptist.’ One might still ask whether Luke’s desire to show Paul to be concerned to keep the law in an ethical sense (cf. Acts 23:5) is consistent with this view.

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even though the subsequent themes of forgiveness and righteousness have not been a part of the speech up to this point. ¹⁹⁹ These new assertions are quite distinctive, and insofar as they feature the failure of the Law of Moses to provide righteousness, introduce new theological language to Acts: language of much more distinctly ‘Pauline’ flavour.²⁰⁰ A second exhortation is introduced in vv.40 – 41 in which Hab 1:5 is cited as a warning to the audience of the speech.

2.5 Suggested exegetical backgrounds The common treatment of Ps 16 in the two speeches studied above combined with the lack of interest in similar exegetical arguments in the other speeches of Acts suggests that Luke employs an historical exegetical tradition which precedes Luke-Acts. Is it that these arguments simply reflect widely attested ancient exegetical practice? This chapter will argue that the use of notions concerning the life, death and role of David in the exegetical practice of Acts is distinctive and does not directly depend upon any of the literature often thought to have influenced the literary and exegetical practice of Luke-Acts. Furthermore, it will be argued that this distinctive use of history which attempts to bring knowledge of David’s historical circumstances as author and possible referent of Pss 16 and 110 to the task of interpreting those texts depends very much on the distinctive Heilsgeschichte of Luke-Acts.

2.5.1 Qumranic Literature Various clear points of similarity between the Dead Sea Scrolls and the Acts of the Apostles have been noted. For example, the Qumran community’s desire for all property to be held in common, seen in 1QS 6:13 – 23, is similar to Luke’s account of the practice of the Jerusalem Church in Acts 4:36 – 5:11.²⁰¹

 Vv.38 – 39 contain a number of textual variants in addition to unclear verse division, though none of which has any bearing on this discussion.  Johnson, Acts, p. 236 ‘Here is as close an approximation to Paul’s distinctive contrast between faith-righteousness and Torah-righteousness (Rom 2:13; 3:24– 26; 4:2, 5; 5:1, 9; 8:30, 33; 1 Cor 8:11; Gal 2:16; 3:11, 24) as we will find in Luke.’ Pervo, Acts, p. 340 notes that ‘there is almost universal consensus that vv.38 – 39 indicate Luke’s familiarity with Pauline thought…Gal 3:11; 5:4 may be in mind.’ Cf. Barrett, Acts, p. 651.  Joseph Fitzmyer, ‘Jewish Christianity in Acts in Light of the Qumran Scrolls’, in Studies in Luke-Acts (ed. L. E. Keck and J. L. Martyn; London: SPCK, 1968), pp. 223 – 257. Cf. Catherine M.

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Can the same similarity be claimed for the exegetical practice of Acts and the Qumran literature? George J. Brooke offers a detailed comparison of 4QMMT with Acts noting several interesting parallels. Whilst not arguing that the two texts possess any relationship of literary dependence, Brooke notes that the form of each text (both written as open letters) is similar and that each text places significant emphasis upon Jerusalem and the Temple.²⁰² He also suggests that the interpretation of Scripture is similar in each text, claiming that in each text the continuing value of the Law is emphasised. Whilst Brooke does not examine the exegetical methods employed in 4QMMT, he does highlight stylistic features of the use of Scripture in 4QMMT which cohere with certain features of Acts. For example, 4QMMT employs citation formulae (such as ‫ אף כתוב‬and ‫ )שא כתוב‬which emphasise the written nature of the biblical text in a manner similar to that Acts 1.20, 7:42 and 13:33, though this mode of citation is not unique to Acts in the New Testament. Similarly, 4QMMT C 10 refers to something ‫בספר מושה ]ו[בספר]י הנ[ביאים‬ ‫ובדוי]ד‬..] as a means of designating the whole of Scripture in a way that reflects Lk 24:44.²⁰³ However, some degree of similarity between the use of Scripture in Acts and 4QMMT is not surprising since, as Brooke notes, both texts originate from a common Palestinian Jewish milieu, and, perhaps more significantly, since Acts demonstrates a great variety of exegetical practices and styles, some similarity seems unavoidable. However, it is the great diversity of the use of Scripture in Acts which undermines the significance of Brooke’s comparison with 4QMMT, a text which has a relatively uniform approach to Scripture.²⁰⁴ Richard Longenecker suggests that the interpretation of Ps 16 as referring to Jesus in the Pentecost speech is an example of ‫ פשר‬influenced exegesis.²⁰⁵ There

Murphy, Wealth in the Dead Sea Scrolls and in the Qumran Community (STDJ 40; Leiden: Brill, 2002), pp. 447 ff. who notes the broad concern of goods distribution at Qumran.  George J. Brooke, ‘Luke-Acts and the Qumran Scrolls: The Case of MMT’, in Luke’s Literary Achievement: Collected Essays (ed. Christopher Tuckett; JSNTSup 116; Sheffield: Sheffield Academic Press, 1995), pp. 80 – 83.  Ibid., pp. 87– 89.  Much of 4QMMT does not include direct citation of Scriptural material, but alludes to specific texts in a manner common in halakic literature. Direct citations are most frequent towards the end of 4QMMT B and throughout 4QMMT C. Quotations are always introduced with a formula based on the root ‫ כתב‬and are always cited as proofs or exhortations related to the argument. Unlike Acts and in common with qumranic ‫פשר‬, there is no suggestion at any point that the meaning of a quotation is unclear and needs to be accompanied by exegetical reasoning.  Longenecker, Biblical Exegesis, p. 100 ‘it is a pesher understanding that evokes such an introduction as “David said concerning him”…and applies the passages directly to him.’

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is indeed much conceptual similarity between the interpretation of Scripture in Luke-Acts and within the quman ‫פשר‬. For example, both see Scripture as essentially eschatological, demanding some sort of fulfilment in the future. However, the ‘apologetic’ reasoning of Acts 2:29 – 34 is utterly alien to qumranic ‫פשר‬. Whilst much of the Scriptural interpretation in Acts follows the simple eschatological appropriation of texts seen at Qumran, there is simply no qumranic parallel for the unusual ‘historical’ reasoning of Acts 2:22 – 35 and 13:33 – 37.²⁰⁶ The exegetically important notion in Acts 2:30 that David ought to be understood as a prophet, whilst also present in Tg. Ps.49:16, is a clear feature of 11QPsa. In 11QPsa 27:11. David’s function as a prophet is used as a description of how the psalms were written, emphasising their divine inspiration, but does not serve as an exegetical device. Fitzmyer suggests a possible relationship between what he sees as a qumranic tradition (seen partly in 11QPsa 27:2– 11, 1QM 11:7 and 6QD 3:4) that relates prophetic identity to the ‫משהת‬.²⁰⁷ However, if this tradition is to have influenced the exegetical practice of the Pentecost speech, it seems most likely to have contributed to the interpretation of Ps 16 which claims David as the Messiah, since the identity of David as the prophet and Jesus as the Christ are quite disconnected here.²⁰⁸ Peter W. Flint suggests that the idea that David was a prophet, seen in 11QPsa, may also have influenced 1QpPs, 4QpPsa and 4QpPsb. Flint notes that the pesharim typically discuss texts from the prophets and the use of psalms in these documents suggests that David’s prophetic office provides the basis for the psalms’ inclusion in them.²⁰⁹ If this is the case, the identity of David must be seen as performing a similar function to that in Acts 2:30, enabling a psalm to be understood as prophecy relating to the present situation. However, Davidic authorship is mentioned in neither 1QpPs, 4QpPsa nor 4QpPsb and certainly does not form part of an exegetical argument.

 Though it must be noted that the designation ‘eschatological exegesis’ must not be reduced to a caricature of the entirety of qumranic biblical interpretation. George J. Brooke, ‘The Plain Meaning of Scripture in the Dead Sea Scrolls’, in Jewish Ways of Reading the Bible (ed. George J. Brooke; Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2000), pp. 67– 90 shows that in may cases qumranic exegesis concentrates on the ‘plain meaning’ of biblical texts ‘being concerned with understanding the text as it is received, being concerned with the way in which the authoritative scriptural text presents itself, rather than solely from the point of view of the interpreter’ (p. 71).  Fitzmyer, ‘Being therefore a prophet,’ p. 337.  Though, of course, Luke is quite prepared to call Jesus a prophet in Acts 3:22– 23 as part of Dt 18:15 – 20 is applied to Jesus as a prophecy. Cf. Lk 4:24.  Peter W. Flint, ‘The Prophet David at Qumran,’ in Biblical Interpretation at Qumran (ed. Matthias Henze; Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2005), pp. 165 – 166. A similar claim is made in regard to the treatment of Ps 132 as prophecy in 4QFlor 1:7– 13 by Witherington, Socio-Rhetorical Commentary, p. 146.

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2.5.2 Rabbinic Literature As is noted above, in certain cases amongst the speeches of Acts it is possible to detect the influence of rabbinic homiletical structure, particularly yelammedenu and proem forms. It is also certainly the case that the majority of exegetical techniques employed in Acts reflect rabbinic practice.²¹⁰ However, can the rabbinic literature account for the author-based historical interpretation of Acts 2:22 – 35 or 13:33 – 37? The treatment of specific texts such as Ps 110:1 and Ps 16:8 – 11 appears to differ significantly from those of extant early rabbinic texts, though it is still likely that Luke-Acts demonstrates some dependence on rabbinic exegetical practice.²¹¹ The treatment of Ps 16 in Midr. Ps. 16:10 has already been mentioned in relation its interpretation in Acts 2. Yet, the exegetical practice in the Midrash is really quite different to that of Acts 2. The eschatological reading of Ps 16:11 as referring to David’s incorruptible body in the tomb is posited in a single clause without any attempt to explain the reason for this interpretation. Likewise, b. B. Bat 17a simply posits a similar meaning for Ps 16:9 without explanation. One of the most convincing arguments aligning the exegetical practice of the speeches of Acts with Rabbinic literature is offered by J. W. Bowker.²¹² Whilst recognising the difficulty in selecting the appropriate Rabbinic literature with which to compare the speeches, considering the late date of homiletic midrashim, Bowker notes the consistent structural and stylistic features of these midrashim. Rabbinic homilies tend to fall into two distinct categories based upon their use of lectionary readings. Proem form homilies start with an introductory text which will enable discussion of the seder and haftarah readings from the lectionary by means of a linguistic relationship between the texts. Bowker suggests that the Pentecost speech employs proem form as it takes Joel 3:1– 5 as an introductory text which enables discussion of two other cited texts.²¹³ Yelammedenu form

 Longenecker, Biblical Exegesis, p. 96 ff.  On the contrast between the treatment of Ps 110:1 in Acts (and other early Christian literature) and between that of rabbinic texts see Hay, Glory at the Right Hand, pp. 161– 162. On Ps 16:8 – 11 see Midr. Ps. 16 which whilst referring the text to David interprets it in almost the opposite way, reading the psalm as a promise of David’s restoration.  Bowker, ‘Speeches in Acts,’ pp. 96 – 111. Bowker’s thesis appears to have been widely accepted. C. K. Barrett, ‘Luke/Acts,’ in It is Written: Scripture Citing Scripture (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1998), pp. 241– 242 claims from Bowker’s work that the Rabbinic form detected in some of the speeches has source-critical implications, suggesting that the speeches are abbreviated forms of historical sermons. Cf. Bruce, Acts of the Apostles, p. 35.  Bowker, ‘Speeches in Acts,’ p. 105. Whilst the essential structural similarity is clear, it is significant the Pentecost speech does not display a clear reference to a pentateuchal reading as one would expect in a Rabbinic homily.

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homilies begin with a request for halakic instruction before introducing reflection upon the lectionary readings. Bowker claims that the Pisidian Antioch speech demonstrates this form, though admitting that the speech only refers ‘obliquely’ to possible seder and haftarah readings.²¹⁴ Whilst it seems very likely that Bowker’s thesis is correct to some extent, the structural and linguistic practice of the rabbinic homilies cannot account for the ‘historical’ arguments of the Pentecost and Pisidian Antioch speeches. As Bowker notes, the means of reasoning from one text to another, the practice of haruzin, typically depends on highlighting possible linguistic relationships between texts using techniques akin to gezerah shewah. ²¹⁵ Likewise, Lövestam notes that the association of different texts in Acts 13:33 – 35 reflects rabbinic practice of grouping texts by means of literary or theological themes.²¹⁶ Acts appears to reflect such literary rabbinic practices, yet these practices cannot account for the entirety of the exegetical range of Acts. This is because Acts demonstrates a substantially different approach to Scripture. Rabbinic scriptural interpretation is fundamentally a literary activity: it depends upon detailed and creative knowledge of texts and the language in which they are written. Rabbinic interpretation does not seek to go ‘behind the text’ to a supposed author or historical setting from which the text emerged. Because of this, the arguments of Acts which employ ideas about scriptural authorship seem to bear no resemblance to rabbinic exegesis and the literary assumptions upon which it depends. The ‘historical’ arguments of Acts demonstrate an understanding of a scriptural text’s relationship of contingency to its historical author in that the meaning of a text is understood when the author is in view. This element of contingency is not a feature of rabbinic understandings of Scripture.²¹⁷ Jan Willen Doeve attempts to explain the Messianic reading of Ps 16:9 in Acts 2 with reference to rabbinic hermeneutical method. He argues that the use of the root ‫ גיל‬in Ps 16:9 evokes the use of the same root in Isa 25:9, Hab 3:18 and Pss 9:15 and 21:2 where it is employed in connection with the imperfect and substan-

 Ibid., pp. 101– 102. It is unclear whether the request made of Paul and Barnabas for a λόγος παρακλήσεως can be understood as the same request for halakic instruction which is part of the yelammedenu form, lacking, as it does, any clear ethical focus.  Koet, Interpretation of Scripture in Luke-Acts, pp. 141– 142 claims that Luke exhibits a ‘systematic’ approach to biblical interpretation following rabbinic methods, based on his observation that gezerah shewah is employed in Lk 4:18 – 19 using the Stichwört ἄφεσις. However, the use of one rabbinic exegetical device (which is all that Koet demonstrates) is not enough to claim Luke-Acts as primarily indebted to rabbinic methods of biblical interpretation.  Lövestam, Son and Saviour, pp. 85 – 86.  Trull, ‘Views on Peter’s use of Psalm 16,’ p. 203.

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tive forms of ‫ישע‬, which bring to mind the Hebrew name of the Christ: ‫יהושוע‬.²¹⁸ However, this is simply not the reasoning Luke seeks to make plain in the Pentecost speech, even if one admits the unlikely notion that Luke had access to detailed knowledge of Hebrew texts or access to earlier Christian traditions which had developed this interpretation of Ps 16:8 – 10 already. Another attempt to demonstrate that rabbinic exegetical techniques are employed to interpret Ps 16:8 – 11 in Acts 2 is offered by Donald Juel. Juel suggests that Doeve’s analysis is ‘overly ingenious, depending on questionable word-associations and untenable interpretations.’²¹⁹ Instead, Juel posits a more cautious view of the speech’s relation to rabbinic method. He asserts that the confident apologetic tone of the exegetical argument in Acts 2:29 ff. reflects knowledge of a clear methodological tradition as one begins to find in rabbinic literature after the first Century. This confidence in a shared method was encouraged by the supposedly already existent tradition of reading Ps 16 as a messianic text, as evidenced in Midr. Ps. 16.²²⁰ Juel also suggests that the notion of reading the text as referring to someone other than David may relate to the observation in Midr. Ps. 16 that ‘the interpreters read hāsîd as a reference to other hāsîdîm in the psalms, as a reference in other words to the pious instead of to David.’²²¹ However, this argument assumes rather a lot: the existence of the interpretive traditions of Midr. Ps. 16 at the time Acts was written; Luke’s knowledge of those traditions; that the speech’s confident style must be explained by its relation to an established exegetical tradition and that reasonings close to those of Midr. Ps. 16 are operative within the speech even though they are not referred to. Moreover, Juel’s explanation of the use of Ps 16 in the Pentecost speech still cannot account for the use of arguments which feature the concept of the text’s historical author. As has been noted above, this factor is alien to the interpretation of Ps 16 in Midr. Ps. There is a further possible explanation of the ‘historical’ arguments of Acts, one that has not been suggested so far in Acts scholarship. Jouette M. Bassler writes, Davidic authorship of the Psalms was usually assumed as a matter of course, though less than half bear superscriptions affirming this. Since the rabbis also assumed that the Psalms

 Jan Willen Doeve, Jewish Hermeneutics in the Synoptic Gospels and Acts (Assen: Van Gorcum, 1954), pp. 168 ff.  Juel, ‘Social Dimensions of Exegesis,’ p. 547.  Ibid., pp. 547– 548 and 555. Juel notes that the Pentecost speech does not need to resort to a closed theological and sectarian reading of the text, as seen at Qumran and indeed in other parts of the New Testament. He suggests that this is because the interpretation of Ps 16:8 – 11 confidently follows well-established methodological rules.  Ibid., p. 549.

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were primarily about David (b. Pesah. 117a; Midr. Ps. 4.1), they could use them to reconstruct historical events. Thus the superscription of the third psalm, “A Psalm of David, when he fled from Absalom his son,” convinced the rabbis that although the historical text (II Sam. 15) is silent on this matter, David was actually composing this psalm as he fled, and the psalm thus reveals David’s thoughts and feelings at that historical moment (Midr. Ps. 3.3, 119:26).²²²

The superscriptions which accompany certain psalms could be seen to embody a certain type of ‘historical’ exegesis. Whilst Brevard Childs makes it clear that the origins of these superscriptions are by no means certain, he suggests that ‘by placing a Psalm within the setting of a particular historical incident in the life of David, the reader suddenly was given access to previously unknown information.’²²³ Whilst the initial act of placing a superscription that purports to record the historical context of composition with a psalm is closer to the practice of the ‫ פתר‬type exegesis seen in Gen Rab. 2:3 and 38:1, the subsequent use of that superscription to shed historical light of the text it accompanies would bear considerable resemblance to the ‘historical’ arguments of Acts 2 and 13. Yet there does not appear to be any significant degree of similarity between the historical arguments of Acts and the interest of Midr. Ps. 3 in the very specific superscription ‫מזמור לדוד בברחו מפני אבשלום בני‬.²²⁴ Midr. Ps. 3 is primarily interested in constructing the life of David using the psalm: the psalm is used to shed light on the person of David, rather than the person of David used to interpret the psalm. Ps 3 is subsumed into the narrative of 2 Sam 15 and, apart from what it may add to this narrative, has little contemporary meaning. This use of history is quite different to that of Acts 2:29 – 34 since it appears to separate the text from addressing its contemporary reader by reading it primarily as an historical source on the life of David. History here is a barrier to the psalm’s continued ability to affect its reader whilst in Acts, history is the means by which the text is able to speak a timeless message.

 Jouette M. Bassler, ‘A Man for All Seasons: David in Rabbinic and New Testament Literature,’ Int. 40:2 (1988), p. 159.  Brevard S. Childs, ‘Psalm Titles and Midrashic Exegesis,’ JSS 16:2 (1971), p. 149.  Of course, the very idea of Midr. Ps. as a potential influence is doubtful, considering the very late dating for the earliest MSS. Midr. Ps. is not referred to directly prior to the 11th Century. The references in Gen. Rab. 33:2, p. Kil. 9:32b and p. Ket 12:3 to midrashic material on the psalms may suggest that Midr. Ps. embodies traditions that are quite old, though undoubtedly not old enough to be known by the earliest Christians.

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2.5.3 Josephus It is, of course impossible to claim that Acts is somehow dependent upon the actual writings of Josephus, since such a claim would require an extraordinarily late dating for Acts or else a much earlier one for Josephus.²²⁵ However, it could be possible that Acts reflects the exegetical traditions that are witnessed in Josephus and which undoubtedly predate him.²²⁶ Yet, can the exegetical practice seen in Josephus account for the author-based historical interpretation of Acts 2:22– 35 or 13:33 – 37? In Ant. 6.166 David is depicted as a prophet. This could invite comparison with the ‘historical’ arguments of Acts, yet the idea of David as a prophet does not appear to have much significance for Josephus, rather the phrase καὶ ὁ μὲν προφητεύειν ἤρξατο τοῦ θείου πνεύματος εἰς αὐτὸν μετοικισαμένου is simply Josephus’ gloss on 1 Sam 16. Many have undertaken studies of the portrayal of particular biblical characters in Josephus. These studies suggest that Josephus’ exegetical tendencies, whilst quite similar to the ‘re-written’ biblical narratives of Acts, cannot explain the arguments of Acts 2:29 – 34 and 13:36 – 37. For example, Louis H. Feldmann shows that Josephus’ interest in Saul is far from historical. Instead, the character of Saul serves an apologetic function, following the creative historicity of the Isocratean school.²²⁷ This interpretation of Saul lifts him out of his historical context (the context which Acts 2:29 – 34 aims to situate Ps 16:8 –

 Certainly Josephus’ sophisticated description of the biblical canon demonstrates the size of the disjuncture between biblical interpretation in his work and the New Testament. Cf. Duane L. Christensen, ‘Josephus and the Twenty-Two Book Canon of Sacred Scripture,’ JETS 29:1 (1986), pp. 37– 46. Likewise, Josephus’ sophisticated discussion of the calculation of the Sabbath year and its related biblical texts also emphasises this disjunction. Cf. Don Blosser, ‘The Sabbath Year Cycle in Josephus,’ HUCA 52 (1981), pp. 129 – 139. There is, however, a substantial agreement between Luke-Acts and Josephus in their portrayal of certain historical events, as demonstrated by Steve Mason, Josephus and the New Testament (Peabody: Hendrickson, 1993), pp. 204– 223.  It must be noted that many scholars have pointed out strong similarities between Luke and Josephus. For example, Bruce, Acts of the Apostles, p. 35 with reference to War. 2:140 – 158, suggests that their speech compositional practice may be similar (though Bruce goes on to suggest that Bowker’s work on the Rabbinic forms of the speeches shows them to be, in some degree, non-Lukan).  Louis H. Feldman, ‘Josephus’ Portrait of Saul,’ HUCA 53 (1982), pp. 45 – 99. Cf. idem., ‘Josephus’ Version of Samson,’ JSJPHR 19:2 (1980), pp. 172– 214, idem., ‘Josephus’ Portrait of Jacob,’ JQR 79:2/3 (1988), pp. 101– 151, idem., ‘Josephus’ Portrait of Moses,’ JQR 82:3/4 (1992), pp. 285 – 328, idem., ‘Josephus’ Portrait of Elisha,’ NovT 36:1 (1994), pp. 1– 28, idem., ‘Josephus’ Portrait of Ezra,’ VT 43:2 (1993), pp. 190 – 214, idem., ‘Josephus’ Interpretation of Jonah,’ AJS Review 17:1 (1992), pp. 1– 29, idem., ‘Josephus’ Commentary on Genesis,’ JQR 72:2 (1981), pp. 121– 131 and idem., ‘Abraham the Greek Philosopher in Josephus,’ TPAPA 99 (1968), pp. 143 – 156.

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11 in) to enable him to become an exemplar of Hellenistic ideals. Josephus’ tendency to read biblical characters as heroes of Hellenistic virtue is also noted by Christopher Begg. Begg notes that Ant. 7.343 – 362 recounts the events surrounding Solomon’s ascension to the throne of Israel, emphasises the wisdom of David and the mercy of Solomon whilst also recasting the whole episode in great dramatic detail for the Hellenistic audience.²²⁸ These Hellenised readings of biblical characters are not performed on the basis of assumptions about the history behind their portrayal in biblical narrative; rather the characters are taken from their literary context and extended to relate to Josephus’ Hellenistic context. This manner of reading is not so different from that of the qumranic pesharim. In each case the present context of the interpreter, be it eschatological or cultural, provides the exclusive means of interpreting the biblical text. However, other features of Josephus’ scriptural interpretation cannot be characterised in this way. H. W. Basser makes it clear that Josephus had some knowledge of traditions of rabbinic interpretation.²²⁹ Likewise David Daube shows that Josephus employs a typological use of biblical characters in his Jewish War as a means of describing his own role in the war and his reasons for surrendering, and on a larger scale, defining his own identity as an inspired interpreter of history.²³⁰ It is this identity as a creative historian whose concern is the creation of Hellenistic apology for the Jews which demonstrates Josephus’ lack of interest in history as an aid in interpreting sacred texts. Such texts are of most value to Josephus when their Semitic and historical particularity can be overlooked. Because of this, the writings of Josephus cannot be seen to shed any light on the origins of the ‘historical’ exegesis of the Pentecost speech and the Pisidian Antioch speech. The lack of apparent contingency of this ‘historical’ exegesis upon other ancient traditions of exegesis suggests that it must be explained in terms of something which is distinctive to the New Testament literature: the particularly Lukan concept of salvation history.

2.6 History in Luke-Acts Where do the historical arguments of Acts 2 and 13 come from then? This chapter will conclude by suggesting that these exegetical arguments are in fact the result

 Christopher Begg, ‘Josephus’ Retelling of 1 Kings 1 for a Graeco-Roman Audience.’ TynB 57:1 (2006), pp. 85 – 108.  H. W. Basser, ‘Josephus as Exegete,’ JAOS 107:1 (1987), pp. 21– 30. This is in particular reference to the account of the Garden of Eden in Ant.  David Daube, ‘Typology in Josephus,’ JJS 31:1 (1980), pp. 18 – 36.

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of a specifically Lukan view of history. Yet what is Luke’s understanding of history? This has been a subject of significant scholarly discussion and is largely associated with the use of Scripture in Luke-Acts. This is not a discussion of the historicity of Luke-Acts, rather one concerning Luke’s notion of history as an integrated course of events embracing the past, the present and the future. It is beyond dispute that, as with much of Jewish apocalyptic, history is understood by Luke as essentially linear, progressing from one ‘age’ to another, though the precise nature of how different elements of history relate to each other is unclear.²³¹ The prevailing view from the 1920 s to the 1980 s was that Luke’s concept of history is determined by his employment of ‘proof from prophecy’.²³² To

 Cf. Helmut Flender, St Luke: Theologian of Redemptive History (trans. H. Reginald and Ilse Fuller; London: SPCK, 1967), p. 101 ‘Luke 22:69 also marks a “decisive shift from one period to another”…The ἀπὸ τοῦ νῦν preserves a via media between an unbiblical nunc aeternum (which the Pauline or Johannine νῦν might suggest), and a linear sequence of similar periods, which Luke combines by means of ἀπὸ τότε.’ Cf. Hans Conzelmann, The Theology of St Luke (trans. Geoffrey Buswell; London: Faber and Faber, 1960), p. 161 who suggests that the different epochs of salvation history are united by the enduring witness of the Scriptures and idem., Commentary, p. xlv ‘each [epoch] ties up with the preceding and carries it further, whilst also possessing its own additional characteristics.’ Likewise, E. Earle Ellis, The Old Testament in Early Christianity: Canon and Interpretation in Light of Modern Research (WUNT 54; Tübingen: Mohr Siebeck, 1991), p. 104 who argues that the ‘nuanced’ sense of continuity is a development of the ‘two-age perspective’ of apocalyptic Judaism.  This is the view proposed by H. J. Cadbury, The Making of Luke-Acts (New York: Macmillan, 1927), p. 303 and broadly supported by Conzelmann, The Theology of St Luke, p. 157; I. Howard Marshall, Luke: Historian and Theologian (Exeter: Paternoster, 1970), pp. 118 – 122 and Jervell, ‘The Future of the Past’, p. 110 who writes, ‘it is not appropriate to refer to Luke’s attitude to history that we can learn from history [which Jervell suggests in p. 115 is the view in Polybius’ History] or that history might give us self-knowledge…There is no future apart from…legitimization from Scripture, and the future is known to those who know history, that is, Scripture. What God has not foreordained long ago will collapse. The historian Luke does nothing but interpret the Scriptures.’ A more recent vote in favour of ‘proof from prophecy’ is that of David Peterson, ‘The Motif of Fulfillment and the Purpose of Luke-Acts’, in The Book of Acts in its First Century Setting Vol I: Ancient Literary Setting (ed. Bruce W. Winter and Andrew D. Clarke; Michigan: Eerdmans, 1993), pp. 83 – 103. Peterson points out the distinctly Lukan preference for verbs of fulfillment; πληρόω, συμπληρόω, πίμπλημι, τελέω and συντελέω, noting parallels with Josephus and Apuleius, arguing that the motif of fulfilment demonstrates the determination of history by God. Cf. Fitzmyer, ‘Use of the Old Testament,’ p. 536 and Brian S. Rosner, ‘Acts and Biblical History’, in The Book of Acts in its First Century Setting Vol I: Ancient Literary Setting (ed. Bruce W. Winter and Andrew D. Clarke; Michigan: Eerdmans, 1993), pp. 65 – 81. Rosner is aware of the Lukan use of scriptural allusion and typology yet insists on the importance of ἡ βουλὴ τοῦ θεοῦ (Acts 2:23, 4:23, 13:36 and 20:27) for understanding the prophetic role of Scripture in Luke’s deterministic understanding of history. A similar assessment to ‘proof from prophecy’ is also suggested by Tannehill, ‘Israel in Luke-Acts,’ p. 70 who states that in Luke-Acts scriptural texts

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an extent this interpretation of history in Luke-Acts still stands. Scriptural texts are used by Luke as prophetic predictions of what will happen in history.²³³ The course of history is therefore seen as determined by God’s speech in Scripture. Because of this, the life of Jesus and the narrative of the early church are essentially the result of scriptural command. It has been argued by Arnold Ehrhardt on the basis of redaction criticism of Luke 24 that ‘proof from prophecy’ may not be Lukan but simply reflects the theology of Luke’s sources (Q in particular).²³⁴ Be that as it may, the final form of Luke-Acts presents us with a view of history as determined by ‘proof from prophecy’, even if this notion is not Luke’s own. Moreover, Ehrhardt’s suggestion that ‘proof from prophecy’ belongs to Q cannot account for the clear assertion of prophetic fulfilment as a central theme of the Gospel in Luke’s prologue. H. H. Oliver also attempts to cast doubt on ‘proof from prophecy’ altogether by claiming that the Lukan theology is ‘eschatological’ rather than ‘prophetic’.²³⁵ This claim is confusing and, as Darrell L. Bock notes, it is not clear how this eschatological reading differs from previous claims of ‘proof from prophecy’.²³⁶ The most robust and wide-ranging challenge to ‘proof from prophecy’ is that offered by Charles H. Talbert, though Talbert’s study seems only to challenge the view that ‘proof from prophecy’ provides the exclusive description of the use of Scripture in Luke-Acts. Talbert instead notes that much of the use of Scripture in Luke-Acts is typological, or else it has an ethical focus, setting the standard for the behaviour of God’s people.²³⁷ However, Talbert’s examples of typology in Luke-Acts are events which allude to Scripture rather than specific discussions of Scripture. It is clear that the use of Ps 16 in Acts 2 cannot

‘express a particular understanding of God’s purpose and are programs for action.’ Tannehill (p. 71) also notes that the hymns of the Lukan infancy narrative bear the same programmatic purpose.  Indeed, as Gregory E. Sterling, ‘“Do You Understand What You are Reading?” The Understanding of the LXX in Luke-Acts’, in Die Apostelgeschichte im Kontext antiker und frühchristlicher Historiographie (ed. Jörg Frey, Clare K. Rothschild and Jens Schröter; BNZW 162; Berlin: de Gruyter, 2009), pp. 101– 118 argues, the establishment of Heilsgeschichte is a feature of the use of Scripture in the Pisidian Antioch speech itself.  Arnold Ehrhardt, ‘The Disciples of Emmaus,’ NTS 10 (1963 – 1964), p. 187. ‘Here [Lk 24] we have no more than rearrangement by Luke of Q material without any significant addition or change; and it may well be held that the all-over proof-from-prophecy theology belonged already to Q.’  H. H. Oliver, ‘The Lukan Birth Stories and the Purpose of Luke-Acts,’ NTS 10 (1963 – 1964), p. 225.  Bock, Proclamaition from Prophecy, p. 31.  Charles H. Talbert, ‘Promise and Fulfilment in Lukan Theology,’ in Luke-Acts: New Perspectives from the Society of Biblical Literature Seminar (ed. Charles H. Talbert; New York: Crossroad, 1984), p. 93 – 95.

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be regarded as typological since the text is turned into prophecy in an exegetical argument that also attempts to prevent it from referring to anyone other than Jesus of Nazareth. Bock presents a convincing modification of ‘proof from prophecy’ which takes account of the objections raised by Talbert and others. Bock argues that Luke’s use of Scripture and his view of history should be regarded as ‘proclamation from prophecy and pattern.’ Bock notes that Scripture ultimately serves a Christological purpose in Luke-Acts: its function is the proclamation of Jesus as Lord.²³⁸ This proclamation is achieved by citing Scripture as prophecy directly predicting the events of the Gospel and the early Church and by referring to Scripture to identify Jesus as the fulfilment of a type.²³⁹ What emerges is a slightly more complex description of history in Luke-Acts than that offered by Cadbury, but one that still essentially suggests the determinative function of Scripture upon history.²⁴⁰ It is clear that Luke’s understanding of the continuity of history must be expressed in an appropriately nuanced manner. ‘Proof from prophecy’ emphasises the essential unity of history in Luke-Acts. Yet the notion of distinct epochs in history, as well as possible differences in soteriology and the function of the law as a result of the Messianic age, suggest a more qualified sense of that continuity.²⁴¹ Haenchen suggests that it is Luke’s view of history as something continuous yet comprising distinct parts or epochs that provides his motivation to take history seriously as an author. Luke accepted the reality of time, with its threefold division into past, present and future. He did not shrink from treating the earthly life of Jesus as something belonging to the past.

 Bock, Proclamaition from Prophecy, pp. 270 – 274.  Ibid., pp. 275 – 277.  David L. Tiede, Prophecy and History in Luke-Acts (Philadelphia: Fortress, 1980), p. 103 asserts that the determining function of Scripture upon history must be understood as part of Luke’s purpose in writing Luke-Acts as a work of theodicy. ‘The stated objective of stating that Jesus and the beginnings of the church are the fulfilment of the scriptures is never far removed from the larger and more painful task of demonstrating that the present times are within the divine economy and that God’s promises to chosen Israel will not fail to be fulfilled.’  Witherington, Socio-Rhetorical Commentary, p. 124 ‘Luke’s concern is with salvation history, the story of the age inaugurated by the coming of the Messiah on the stage of human history, especially beginning with his baptism…, a history which reaches a further stage of development after the death, resurrection, and ascension of Jesus because the Spirit which brings about salvation is only sent after Jesus leaves the earth…It would be better, then, to speak of a continuation of and a new development in the people of God, but not simply a continuation in biblical history, for Luke believes since that the coming of Jesus, and even more since Pentecost, God’s people are living in the eschatological age when God’s word will spread across the earth, and many different peoples will respond to it.’

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But if it really lay in the past, he had to seek to grasp it as one seeks to lay hold of anything from the past: as an historian.²⁴²

This recognition of the value of history, of events which took place in the past, may explain the unusual exegetical arguments of Acts 2:29 ff. and 13:36 – 37. Indeed, Jervell argues that this is in fact the case. History even proves that not David but Jesus was raised from the dead and exalted at God’s right hand (Acts 2.30 ff.; 13:33 ff.). David died and was buried and his tomb is still there, but he served God in his own generation. Jesus was raised as the Son of David and King of Israel…The Scriptures not only have promises of a Messiah but even identify Jesus as that promised Messiah.²⁴³

Richard Longenecker suggests that the concept of the continuity of history in the New Testament determines the use of certain exegetical principles. Firstly, continuity allows for ‘corporate solidarity’, enabling texts to be employed in reference to a variety of different situations embraced by the overarching concept of the people of God: a common people of past, present and future. Secondly, the continuity of history ‘as evidencing a unity in its various parts which is there by divine ordination’ enables texts from the past to be read typologically as referring to similar events within the same sphere of divine history.²⁴⁴ The past is seen by Luke to have integrity since it, like the present, is the arena of God’s activity as he makes promises and acts to keep them. The early church is seen as sharing in this history: it is not a new phenomenon but rather is the continuation of the people of God in Scripture. As such it is the recipient of the promises made to Israel. Because past and present are held together as distinctly different epochs by the God who determines all things in accordance with his prophetic word, Luke is able to appreciate the historical nature of Scripture in a unique way. Though Scripture belongs to the past, an assumption clearly expressed in the use of scriptural texts in Stephen’s speech, history is not seen to separate Scripture from the church. The past is both alien and familiar. Because of this, texts do not need to be read as though they have no context other than that in which they are received by the interpreter. Texts can be read as belonging to the past and as contingent upon an historical author. This admission of contingency enables the text to be read in the light of the identity of its author, yet because history is continuous the contingency of the text does not

 Haenchen, Commentary, pp. 97– 98.  Jervell, ‘The Future of the Past’, p. 108.  Longenecker, Biblical Exegesis, pp. 93 – 95.

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serve to destroy its theological authority because in Luke’s view, past and present are both features of a common story. Moreover, because Luke receives Scripture within a matrix of prophecy and fulfilment, texts which he admits as originating in the past will continue to have significance for the present since they are primarily received as prophecy. Contingency does not destroy the authority of the biblical text because Luke understands God’s speech through particular human beings as one of the principal characteristics of God’s authoritative activity in the world. It is this reception as prophecy which the argument of Acts 2:30 – 33 seeks to advance. However, it has been suggested that the understanding of history in LukeActs as ‘proof from prophecy’ is not distinctive, but simply reflects themes in Hellenistic histories. John T. Squires argues that the deterministic function of prophecy upon history seen in Acts is also a feature of the histories of Diodorus Siculus and Josephus.²⁴⁵ In particular, Squires suggests that Diodorus’ use of Delphic Oracle to determine events which occur in his narrative is similar to Luke’s view of history as governed by prophecy. However, the examples of ‘proof from prophecy’ in other literature appear to relate to single events, rather than function as part of a broader approach to history as one finds in Luke-Acts. Indeed, since the work of Alexander on the genre of Luke-Acts, one might question whether a comparison of Luke-Acts with the work of an historian like Diodorus Siculus can really be fruitful. Whilst deterministic understandings of history are commonplace in Greek literature,²⁴⁶ the linear and teleological nature of Luke’s vision of Heilsgeschichte is absent. This certainly weakens the unity of history, in particular the relationship of the past to the present so significant in the use of Scripture in Acts. Whilst in Greek history the past often provides moral guidance for the present, it does not place the same emphasis on typology which allows for a more structured sense of the unity of history in which one event may be seen to prefigure another. If there is any similarity between Luke’s concept of history (not historiography) and that of Classical and Hellenistic Greek literature, it is that Luke offers deterministic Greek history on a grand scale. It is not simply

 John T. Squires, The Plan of God in Luke-Acts (SNTSMS 76; Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1993), pp. 121– 132. Squires makes particular reference to Diodorus’ Hist. 8.21– 30 and 9.31– 36, and Josephus’ Ant. 8.418 and 8.234. A similar claim is made regarding the use of oracles in Polybius by Jervell, ‘The Future of the Past,’ pp. 107 & 115. Cf. Talbert, p. 96.  One only need consider something like the closing chorus of Euripides’ Helen (which purports to tell an historical story) to see this sense of determinism. Helen 1688 – 92 ‘πολλαὶ μορφαὶ τῶν δαιμονίων, πολλὰ δ᾽ ἀέλπτως κραίνουσι θεοί: καὶ τὰ δοκηθέντ᾽ οὐκ ἐτελέσθη, τῶν δ᾽ ἀδοκήτων πόρον ηὗρε θεός. τοιόνδ᾽ ἀπέβη τόδε πρᾶγμα.’ Exactly the same chorus is employed at the close of Andromache (1284– 1288) to articulate the relentless drive of tragedy.

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particular human affairs which are governed by God but the whole eternal course of humankind. Luke’s history is fundamentally theocentric: he writes about the fulfilment of God’s plan, not great human heroes or military campaigns. Luke’s grand picture, then, is inevitably more complex than Greek history, and takes into account diversity in history by identifying distinct periods as identified by Conzelmann. As noted above, it is these two features of Luke’s history, unity and diversity held in tension, which enable a text like Ps 16 to be identified as belonging to a particular historical person and yet allow the text to speak of a subject outside the immediate historical context of that author.

Conclusion Whilst the author of the Epistle to the Hebrews was shown to employ an historical exegetical argument that sought to explain biblical texts on the basis of their setting in time (e. g. after the entry into the Promised Land in the case of Ps 95:7– 11 and after the establishment of the Levitical priesthood in the case of Ps 110:4) Acts 2:25 – 36 and 13:33 – 37 employ another type of historical exegetical argument, the primary concern of which is the identity of the author of Pss 16:8 – 11 and 110:1. As is noted above, this argument appears in two forms. Firstly, the notion of the author as the referent of Pss 16:8 – 11 and 110:1 is set aside on the basis of historical knowledge concerning the death and decay of David. Secondly, Acts 2:25 ff. employs a more detailed assertion of the identity of David as the author of Ps 16:8 – 11 to allow the text to be understood as a prophecy about the Christ: Jesus of Nazareth. Both arguments demonstrate a sense of the biblical text’s contingency upon its author by seeing its meaning as inextricably linked to the person and identity of David. This is an unusual notion in the context of the exegetical literature within which the hermeneutics of Luke-Acts have been typically understood. The use of authorial identity in the arguments of the Pentecost and Pisidian Antioch speeches marks a departure from ancient Jewish exegesis in its various forms and must be understood as representing a particularly Christian innovation. This innovation is made possible by the essentially narratival, linear and teleological nature of Lukan history, a history which allows a biblical text to belong to the past yet speak of the present. Despite this, it is equally possible that the arguments of Acts 2:25 – 36 and 13:33 – 37 are not Lukan but rather reflect an earlier tradition. The fact that these arguments are not used in other speeches where Ps 16 is not present makes it clear that such arguments were not universal. Whilst Lukan Heilsgeschichte provides one explanation of their origin, it is possible that Luke, or at the very least the sources which constitute the bases for the Pentecost and Pi-

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sidian Antioch speeches, had access to an early kerygmatic source which used these arguments. If so, where did this source material come from? The next chapter explores what is perhaps the earliest example of a New Testament historical argument. This argument will be seen to be extraordinarily similar to those of Acts 2:25 – 36 and 13:33 – 37, raising the tantalising question: Could the distinctive historical exegesis of early Christianity originate in some form with the exegetical practice of Jesus Christ himself?

Chapter 3: Historical Exegesis in the Davidssohnfrage: Matthew 22:41 – 46, Mark 12:35 – 37 and Luke 20:41 – 44. In the previous chapter it was argued that in two of the speeches in the Acts of the Apostles a form of historical exegetical argument was employed. This argument sought in each case to interpret either Ps 16 or Ps 110 with reference to David as the assumed author of that text. Whilst two variations of this essential approach are employed in the Pentecost speech, the common argument used in each speech is essentially negative: the idea of David as a particular historical person is used to undermine an existing interpretation of Ps 16. It will be argued in this chapter that this type of negative argument is also employed in the parallel synoptic texts Matt 22:41– 46, Mk 12:35 – 37 and Lk 20:41– 44: the Davidssohnfrage. In these texts, Jesus is shown to interpret Ps 110:1 by referring to David as author, claiming that the Messiah cannot simply be ‘Son/son of David,’ since David refers to the Messiah as κυρίον. It will be argued that this pericope is historical, in that it probably originates with the actual teaching of Jesus, and that it may be responsible in some sense for the emergence of the Pss 16 and 110 sources or traditions employed in the Pentecost and Pisidian Antioch speeches of Acts. Unlike the previous chapters on Hebrews and Acts, it will not be argued here that the exegetical use of ‘history’ in the Davidssohnfrage is in any way related to an author’s general approach to Heilsgeschichte, since it is clear that the Davidssohnfrage represents an independent source, in some ways standing against the primary approach to scripture in each Gospel and only slightly redacted in each case. Nor will it be argued that the negative argument from history used in the Davidssohnfrage is inexplicable in terms of exegetical tradition prior to the New Testament. If the pericope really does demonstrate this historical argument then the analysis of the possible backgrounds to Acts 2:35 – 36 and 13:33 – 37 in the previous chapter will suffice.

3.1 Historical Hermeneutics in the Davidssohnfrage: Mk 12:35 – 37 and Parallels The Davidssohnfrage is in many respects an unusual pericope. As will be seen below, the ambiguity of its meaning is clear throughout the critical scholarship on the passage. The areas of general consensus are limited to (a) a belief that

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somehow the identity of Jesus as ‘Son of David’ is not being denigrated, (b) the belief that the exegetical argument is dependent upon the Old Greek form of Ps 110:1 employed and (c) that there is clear evidence of Markan priority in respect to the pericope. However, regarding each of these points there are good reasons for disagreement. It has been clearly noted that the pericope is both theologically ambiguous and historiographically ambiguous, particularly in respect of its relation to the historical Jesus. The following argument will suggest that it is also ambiguous for another reason. It is exegetically ambiguous. The Davidssohnfrage appears to employ a mode of scriptural exegesis which has not been seen to operate within the Synoptic Gospels: an argument which seeks to define the meaning of a scriptural text by referring to its author.

3.1.1 Jesus’ Interpretation of Scripture in the Synoptic Gospels Whilst it is by no means straightforward to discuss the approaches to Scripture taken by Jesus distinct from the use of Scripture by the synoptic authors, it is perhaps worth constructing a basic outline of the way Jesus is presented as interpreting Scripture. The authors of the Synoptic Gospels are no doubt each keen to portray a Jesus who is an interpreter of Scripture and in many cases the use of Scripture by Jesus goes far beyond what they might attempt as narrators. It is important to note here that in scholarly accounts of the synoptic Jesus’ use of Scripture, there is nothing which examines the practice of referring to history to interpret texts (either to a supposed biblical author or historical situation upon which the text is contingent) as seen in Hebrews and Acts. There is, of course, a great deal of variety in Jesus’ use of Scripture in the Synoptic Gospels.²⁴⁷ For the most part, Jesus’ exegesis can be characterised as essentially charismatic, whilst featuring a significant range of resemblances to rabbinic methods of scriptural interpretation.²⁴⁸ For example, Ellis suggests

 This is particularly the case regarding citation formulae, Cf. Longenecker, Biblical Exegesis, p. 60.  This is the conclusion of Rikk E. Watts, ‘Mark,’ in Commentary on the New Testament use of the Old Testament (ed. G. K. Beale and D. A. Carson; Grand Rapids/Nottingham: Baker/Apollos, 2007), p. 112 who suggests that ‘Mark and his Jesus share most of the hermeneutical methods and assumptions of their contemporaries,’ except allegory, which Watts suggests is not a feature of Mark’s use of the Old Testament. Cf. Longenecker, Biblical Exegesis, pp. 66 – 75 who notes the use of gezerah shewah and qal wahomer (Mk 2:25 – 28)) whilst also likening certain passages to qumranic ‫( פשר‬Mk 12:10, 14:27, Matt 11:10, 13:14, 15:8, Luke 22:37). Longenecker’s claim here that the Davidssohnfrage ought to be understood as an example of‫ פשר‬is problematic since the selfconscious reasoning of Jesus’ exegesis is quite alien to the general practice of ‫פשר‬. Cf. also Craig

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that Jesus’ use of parables to explain Scripture must be understood as a reflection of rabbinic practice.²⁴⁹ Likewise, Koet claims that in Luke 4:16 – 30, Jesus combines Isa 61:1– 2a with Isa 58:6 as an example of gezerah shewah (though this may simply be a reflection of a textual tradition) whilst noting that Jesus’ delivery corresponds to 1st Century synagogue practice.²⁵⁰ Yet Koet also points out that the use of Scripture here must be understood alongside the more general Lukan practice of interpretation (outlined above in chapter two), particularly in regard to Jesus’ use of πληρόω and due to the sense in which Luke 4:16 – 30 is often seen as contributing a program for the plan of Luke-Acts.²⁵¹ It is clear that the use of Scripture by Jesus cannot be abstracted from the theological purpose of each Gospel as a whole. Discussion as to the precise nature of Jesus’ general approach to Scripture in the Synoptic Gospels has often focussed upon his ethical teaching in, for example, Matthew’s Sermon on the Mount or Luke’s Sermon on the Plain. Jesus’ role as interpreter of Scripture here must be seen alongside the theme of his authority to teach in the Synoptic Gospels.²⁵² It is significant that the Matthean Jesus’ bold reinterpretations of Scripture encourage the crowd’s reaction: καὶ ἐγένετο ὅτε ἐτέλεσεν ὁ Ἰησοῦς τοὺς λόγους τούτους, ἐξεπλήσσοντο οἱ ὄχλοι ἐπὶ τῇ διδαχῇ αὐτοῦ ἦν γὰρ διδάσκων αὐτοὺς ὡς ἐξουσίαν ἔχων καὶ οὐχ ὡς οἱ γραμματεῖς αὐτῶν. John Goldingay notes that, whilst it may seem that Jesus openly rejects the fairly unambiguous received reading of Dt 24:1– 4 permitting divorce in Matt 5:32 (a very unusual decision in any rabbinic context), Matt 19:2– 9 seems to explain Jesus’ apparent rejection of this passage by asserting that his view of divorce originates in Gen 1:27 and 2:4, as well as by giving a reason for the existence of Dt 24:1– 4. Yet, Jesus’ explanation of Dt 24:1– 4 appears to aim not to undermine the authority of that text.²⁵³ In this case, Jesus is seeking to explain scrip-

L. Blomberg, ‘Matthew,’ in Commentary on the New Testament use of the Old Testament (ed. G. K. Beale and D. A. Carson; Grand Rapids/Nottingham: Baker/Apollos, 2007), pp. 1– 2.  Ellis, Old Testament, pp. 116 – 117. Cf. David W. Pao and Eckhard J. Schnabel, ‘Luke,’ in Commentary on the New Testament use of the Old Testament (ed. G. K. Beale and D. A. Carson; Grand Rapids/Nottingham: Baker/Apollos, 2007), p. 305.  Koet, Interpretation of Scripture in Luke-Acts, pp. 29 – 30.  Ibid., pp. 36 – 39.  E. G. Selwyn, ‘The Authority of Christ in the New Testament,’ NTS 3:1 (1957), p. 86. Selwyn here understands Jesus to be undermining the ‘plain sense’ of the passages he discusses in favour of a hidden meaning. This would certainly agree with the ‘charismatic’ forms of exegesis seen in Philo, for example. Cf. Wan, ‘Charismatic Exegesis,’ p. 54.  John Goldingay, ‘The Old Testament and Christian Faith: Jesus and the Old Testament in Matthew 1– 5 – Part 2,’ Themelios 8:2 (1983), p. 11. Goldingay also provides a helpfully concise summary of various explanations of the use of Hebrew Scripture in the Sermon on the Mount.

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ture using a common rabbinic principle of textual comparison whilst also intuitively or charismatically explaining the reasons for Moses’ teaching on divorce.²⁵⁴  Incidentally, this passage and its Markan source (Mk 10:2– 9) may provide the only other example in the Synoptic Gospels of an ‘historical argument.’ In this divorce controversy, Jesus is seen to explain the tension between his explanation of Gen 2:24 and well known scriptural permission of divorce by referring to assumed historical conditions under which divorce was permitted: ὅτι Μωϋσῆς πρὸς τὴν σκληροκαρδίαν ὑμῶν ἐτέτρεψεν ὑμῖν ἀπολῦσαι τὰς γυναῖκας ὑμῶν, ἀπ’ἀρχῆς δὲ οὐ γὲγονεν οὕτως. John Nolland, The Gospel of Matthew (NIGNT; Grand Rapids: Eerdmans / Bletchley: Patersoster, 2005), p. 774 notes that the use of the Septuagintal σκληροκαρδίαν evokes a reference to history, most probably the wilderness generation and perhaps specifically the apostasy of Israel at the waters of Meribah, as in Ps 95:8. Carroll D. Osburn, ‘The Present Indicative in Matthew 19:9,’ RQ 24:4 (1981), p. 199 also notes an historical dimension to Jesus’ treatment of the subject of divorce, suggesting that his use of Gen 1:27 and 2:4 is intended to undermine the dependence of contemporary discussion upon Dt 24:1– 4 because these texts existed prior to Moses and so reflect an earlier, more authoritative command by God. Whilst there is no evidence in the pericope to support this claim, it is an interesting parallel to the argument of Hebrew 7:11, where the most recent (rather than the most ancient) text is seen to possess greater authority. Whilst Osburn goes into some detail discussing early Rabbinic interpretation of Dt 24:1– 4, he does not attempt to discuss the relation of Jesus’ argument to this literature. Likewise, Joseph A. Fitzmyer, ‘The Matthean Divorce Texts and Some New Palestinian Evidence,’ Th.Stud. 37.2 (1976), pp. 197– 226 offers a substantial discussion of related divorce literature without noting the unusual character of Jesus’ explanation of Dt 24:1– 4. As with other such possible uses of history in exegesis, the majority of scholars appear to understand the argument that makes the biblical text contingent upon the situation from which it originated, yet do not think it in any way significant. Cf. also J. Carl Laney, ‘Deuteronomy 24:1– 4 and the Issue of Divorce,’ B.Sac. 149 (1992), p. 14. Paul’s argument in Gal 3:19 is similar: τί οὖν ὁ νόμος; τῶν παραβάσεων χάριν προσετέθη, ἄχρις οὖ ἔλθῃ τὸ σπέρμα ᾧ ἐπήγγελται. Whilst this argument is not strictly exegetical since it does not seek to explain the meaning of a specific text, it nonetheless attempts to provide a reason in the past for the existence of a body of scriptural material. Tῶν παραβάσεων may be seen to parallel τὴν σκληροκαρδίαν ὑμῶν in Matt 19:8. However, this sentence is by no means straightforward. J. B. Lightfoot, St Paul’s Epistle to the Galatians (London: MacMillan, 1876), pp. 144– 145 outlines several possible explanations of τῶν παραβάσεων χάριν προσετέθη. Cf. Richard N. Longenecker, Galatians (WBC 41; Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 1990), pp. 138 – 139. Ernest de Witt Burton, A Critical and Exegetical Commentary on the Epistle to the Galatians (ICC; Edinburgh: T. & T. Clark, 1988), p. 188 points out that ‘it is clearly the apostle’s usual thought that where there is no law, though there may be sin, there is no transgression (παράβασις, see Rom. 415 513), his choice of the word παραβάσεων must be taken to indicate that he is speaking not of that which is antecedent but that which is subsequent to the coming of the law.’ This suggests that τῶν παραβάσεων χάριν προσετέθη ought not to be taken as a reference to the historical circumstances in which the law was given, rather it represents the purpose of the law. Assuming that it is an historical statement concerning the law’s origin, it seems clear that such a comment lacks precedent in literature contemporary to Paul. Terrence Callan, ‘Pauline Midrash: The Exegetical Background of Gal 3:19b,’ JBL 99:4 (1980), pp. 550 ff. argues persuasively that the phrase διαταγεὶς δι’ ἀγγέλων ἐν χειρὶ μεσίτου represents common notions from pseudepigraphal and rabbinic sources, yet it is clear that even

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In the Synoptic Gospels, the narrators’ voices perform much of the scriptural interpretation. Indeed, the extent to which one might outline a distinct exegetical style of Jesus’ is open to question. Common to each Gospel writer is the desire to demonstrate that the events of Jesus birth, life, death and resurrection are the fulfilment of Scripture, albeit displaying significantly different styles.²⁵⁵ To this end, the dominant citation formulae in the Markan material are variations of the common New Testament ‘proof text’ formula καθὼς γέγραπται.²⁵⁶ France, in his important study of the use of Scripture by Jesus in the Gospels, characterises the distinctive exegetic approach of Jesus as twofold: [Jesus’] exegesis…differed from that of his contemporaries generally only in a closer adherence to the original sense where misunderstanding or misuse was the rule, yet he applied the Old Testament in a way which was quite unparalleled. The essence of his new application was that he saw the fulfilment of the predictions and foreshadowings of the Old Testament in himself and his work.²⁵⁷

It seems unlikely that the self-reference of Jesus’ exegesis of Scripture is really distinctive, since this approach is also characteristic of the Qumranic ‫פשר‬, as texts are applied directly to the community. However, France does highlight the tendency, already noted, for texts to be stripped of popular interpretation and reasserted according to their assumed ‘original sense.’ This radical type of reading is very much dependent upon the authority of the interpreter and no exegetical reasoning is usually offered. This must be understood to be quite unlike the ‘historical’ readings of Scripture examined in the previous two chapters which attempt to make their exegetical reasoning plain to their audiences. Likewise, it will be suggested below that the reading of Ps 110:1 in the Davidssohn-

when the mediation of Moses is seen as a response to Israel’s sin, this is not understood to affect the status of the law in any way: the law is not seen to be contingent upon the circumstances of its delivery. A close parallel to the intransigence of the law in this respect is the use of the famous asbāb al-nazūl in early tafsir qur’anic commentary, which give historical ‘occasions of revelation’ yet come with a caveat that the revelation is still eternally pre-existent and not to be understood as contingent upon its ‘occasion.’  Cf. Mogens Müller, ‘The Reception of the Old Testament in Matthew and Luke-Acts: From Interpretation to Proof from Scripture,’ NovT 63:4 (2001), pp. 315 – 328.  Cf. Mk 1:2, 7:6, 11:17 and 14:27 This is also a feature of Q. For example, Jesus’ temptation in the wilderness: Matt 4:4, 6, 7 and 10. It must be noted that in much of Mark the citation of Scripture is not formulaic but highly individualised, depending on the context in which it is quoted.  R. T. France, Jesus and the Old Testament: His Application of Old Testament Passages to Himself and His Mission (Grand Rapids: Baker, 1971), pp. 223 – 224.

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frage is radically different from the dominant rabbinic and charismatic tendencies of Jesus’ interpretation of Scripture in the Synoptic Gospels.

3.1.2 Mk 12:35 – 37 and its Parallels Before examining the exegetical method employed by Jesus in the Davidssohnfrage, it is important to detail certain textual and synoptic characteristics of the pericope which will feature in subsequent discussion. There are a significant number of differences between the Markan Davidssohnfrage and its parallels in Matthew and Luke. Differences of narrative setting, rather than actual redaction of the pericope probably affect its theological meaning more, yet its essential exegetical logic remains constant. It is likely that Mark has framed the tradition as a chiasm thus, emphasising its citation of Ps 110:1 and the notion of the Messiah’s status and session: Καὶ ἀποκριθεὶς ὁ Ἰησοῦς ἔλεγεν διδάσκων ἐν τῳ̆ ἰερῳ̆ πῶς λέγουσιν οἱ γραματεῖς ὅτι ὁ Χριστὸς υἱὸς Δαυιδ ἐστιν; αὐτὸς Δαυιδ εἶπεν ἐν τῳ̆ πνεύματι τῳ̆ ἁγἰῳ εἶπεν ὁ κύριος τῳ̆ κυρίῳ μου κάθου ἐκ δεξιῶν μου ἕως ἄν θῶ τοὺς ἐχθρούς σου ὑποκάτω τῶν ποδῶν σου. αὐτὸς Δαυιδ λέγει αὐτὸν κύριον, καὶ πόθεν αὐτοῦ ἐστιν υἱος; καὶ ὀ πολὺς ὄχλος ἤκουεν αὐτοῦ ἡδέως.²⁵⁸

This chiastic structure is presumably noticed and developed by Matthew who introduced the citation with a question much like that which follows the citation

 Joel Marcus, The Way of the Lord: Christological Exegesis of the Old Testament in the Gospel of Mark (Edinburgh: T. & T. Clark, 1993), pp. 130 – 131 notes that the outer parts of the chiasm reflect the distinctly Markan terms διδάσκων and πολὺς ὄχλος which are absent from the supposedly independent version of the Davidssohnfrage (abstracted from the teaching of Jesus) in Ep. Barn. 12:10 – 11. The chiasm appears to emphasise the reign of the Messiah. This is certainly in agreement with Marcus’ argument that in the final chapters of his Gospel, Mark develops a sophisticated understanding of Jesus as an eschatological king. Marcus’ suggestion that the setting of the Davidssohnfrage after Jesus’ silencing of his opponents (pp. 135) indicates something of the proleptic reign of Jesus as Son of David seems unlikely. It does, however, explain why the whole of Ps 110:1 is cited, incorporating the notion of the subjugation of the Messiah’s enemies. Similarly, Marcus’ explanation of the concentration of Son of David references in the final chapters of Mark as a testament to the idea of Jesus as eschatological warrior (pp. 138) is

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and repeats the phrase καλεῖ αὐτον κύριον.²⁵⁹ The difference between the Lukan and extant Old Greek use of ὑποπὸδιον in Ps 110:1 and the use of ὑποκάτω in Mark and Matthew is probably the result of Mark’s use of a conflation of Pss 110:1 and 8:6, most probably taken from a testimonia collection.²⁶⁰ Hence, it is unlikely to be of great significance. Neither is Luke’s rejection of this apparent conflation, which should probably be understood as a ‘correction’ rather than a decision to reject a possible Son of Man allusion. Generally, as regards the Davidssohnfrage, agreements between Matthew and Luke are minor and are simply due to common redaction of Mark.²⁶¹ Having noted this, however, Brendan Byrne suggests that the Lukan use of πῶς instead of the Markan πόθεν is a deliberate reflection of Luke’s anxiety regarding the nature of the Messiah.²⁶² The Markan version of the Davidssohnfrage is connected to the pericope that surrounds it by means of the Stichwort γραμματεύς.²⁶³ Yet ‘in Matt. 22 the Gospel tradition has clothed the saying with controversy so that it rather resembles an apophthegm.’²⁶⁴ The Matthean situation of Mk 12:35 – 37 at the end of a controversial discussion between Jesus and the Pharisees gives the tradition a greater structural significance. In Matt 22:41– 46, Jesus, having been addressed with numerous questions, all of which he answers, asks his own question which cannot be answered by the Pharisees, so concluding the argument.²⁶⁵ To this end, the

supported by the importance of the Son of David’s victory in Jerusalem and his cultic role in Pss Sol. 17:22 and 30 – 31.  Boris Repschinski, The Controversy Stories in the Gospel of Matthew: Their Redaction, Form and Relevance for the Relationship Between the Matthean Community and Formative Judaism (FRLANT 189; Göttingen: Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 2000), p. 226 notes that the question τί ὑμῖν δοκεῖ here is distinctively Matthean and that its insertion ‘renders the rhetorical question of Mk 12:35 as two questions.’ Cf. Christoph Burger, Jesus als Davidssohn: Eine traditionsgeschichtliche Untersuchung (FRLANT 98; Göttingen: Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 1970), p. 87 where a full description of Matthean redaction is offered.  Adela Yarbro Collins, Mark: A Commentary (Hermeneia; Minneapolis: Fortress, 2007), p. 578.  W. D. Davies and Dale C. Allison, The Gospel According to Saint Matthew: Vol III (ICC; Edinburgh: T. & T. Clark, 1997), p. 249.  Brendan Byrne, ‘Jesus as Messiah in the Gospel of Luke: Discerning a Pattern of Correction,’ CBQ 65:1 (2003) p. 89  Yarbro Collins, Mark, pp. 579 – 80.  Joseph Fitzmyer, ‘The Son of David Tradition and Matt. 22. 41– 46 and Parallels,’ Conc. 10:2 (1966), p. 41.  Davies and Allison, Matthew, pp. 249 and 256. Fitzmyer suggests that the Matthean use of Mk 12:35 – 37 perhaps resembles something of the original setting of the pericopae in Jesus’ ministry, though it is difficult to substantiate this claim, ‘especially since it is not clear what question from his opponents might have provoked Jesus’ counter question.’ I Howard Marshall,

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Markan statement of Jesus’, οἱ γραματεῖς ὅτι ὁ Χριστὸς υἱὸς Δαυιδ ἐστιν; is given to the Pharisees to express as λέγουσιν αὐτῳ̆ τοῦ Δαυιδ.²⁶⁶ Alfred Suhl writes of the exegetical questions Jesus uses after the citation that ‘diese Frage hat nicht mehr polemischen Charakter, wie die Frage der Mk-Vorlage, sondern beinhaltet ein Problem, auf das die Gegner freilich keine Antwort wissen.’²⁶⁷The Lukan version, bearing a much closer resemblance to Mark, does not include details about the context of Jesus’ interpretation of Ps 110:1 in the pericope but merely appends it to a conversation between Jesus and the Sadducees with the words εἶπεν δὲ πρὸς αὐτούς. According to John Nolland, in Matthew the Davidssohnfrage represents something of a ‘watershed’, since after this event opposition to Jesus is seen to develop significantly.²⁶⁸ Within the Markan narrative the Davidssohnfrage appears to be part of an increased emphasis upon the notion of the ‘Son of David’ as Jesus approaches his death in Jerusalem. David is mentioned three times in close succession: Firstly, as Bartimeaus (moved and made anonymous in Matthew and Luke) exclaims υἱὲ Δαυὶδ Ἰησοῦ, ἐλέησόν με, then as the crowd shout out εὐλογημένη ἡ ἐρχομένη βασιλεία τοῦ πατρὸς ἡμῶν Δαυίδ during Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem and finally in the temple itself in the Davidssohnfrage. The Lukan setting of the pericope does not give it any significant structural prominence, though its traditional Jerusalem setting in Mark and Matthew is followed. Likewise, Luke only appears to use ‘Son of David’ when following Mark, except for in the infancy narrative which is permeated by scriptural imagery. As will be seen below, the differing settings of the pericope add to the significant ambiguity surrounding its theological meaning.

The Gospel of Luke (NIGNT; Grand Rapids: Eerdmans/Paternoster, 1978), p. 744. David Daube, ‘Four Types of Question,’ JTS 2:1 (1951), p. 45 argues against such a view based on the highly developed structure of the controversy dialogue. Cf. Rodulf Bultmann, The History of the Synoptic Tradition (trans. John Marsh; Oxford: Blackwell, 1963), p. 51. ‘It becomes possible to talk of a productive power of the controversy dialogue, of the increasing tendency of the Church to clothe its dominical sayings, its views and its fundamental beliefs in the controversy dialogue. The tendency is shown when the type of the controversy dialogue now and then colours other passages.’  Nolland, Matthew, p. 914.  Alfred Suhl, ‘Der Davidssohn im Matthäus-Evangelium,’ ZNW 59:1 (1968), p. 61. Suhl also notes here that Matthew inserts the Pharisees into the Pericope as the ‘Gesprächspartner Jesu.’  Ibid., p. 917. Cf. Repschinski, Controversy Stories, p. 230.

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3.1.3 The Exegetical Argument The following discussion will attempt to demonstrate that a clear ‘historical’ exegetical argument is employed in each instance of the Davidssohnfrage, an argument akin to those examined in previous chapters. However, whilst this exegetical argument may prove to be relatively straightforward (though, as with such other examples, lacking clear precedent in the relevant literature), it is clear that the meaning of the pericope is highly ambiguous: a fact which will prove significant in the subsequent discussion of its historicity. Whilst there is some difference between the presentations of the Davidssohnfrage amongst the Synoptic Gospels, the exegetical reasoning appears to remain the same. In each version, the question of the Messiah’s Davidic sonship is raised prior to the lemma. In each version, the scriptural citation is introduced in such a way as to cast doubt upon the received understanding of the identity of the Messiah with which the pericope begins. Matthew develops this introduction to the citation to make it anticipate Jesus’ exegetical question which will follow: λέγει αὐτοῖς πῶς οὖν Δαυιδ ἐν πνεύματι καλεῖ αὐτὸν κύριον λέγων…. Here the exegetical problem begins to be exposed. This problem relates to the identity of the assumed author or speaker of the citation: David. If the Messiah is the Son of David in the received manner, how is it possible for him to say what he says in Ps 110:1? The citation formula used in Mark and in an apocopated form in Matthew is significant. The phrase ἐν τῷ πνεύματι τῷ ἁγιῳ/ἐν πνεύματι reflects an understanding of David speaking as a prophet.²⁶⁹ Even prior to the citation, the audience is urged to expect a prophecy spoken by a prophet and looking to some later event or person.²⁷⁰ After the citation, Jesus asks a question to urge the audience to answer his initial query regarding the Davidic sonship of the Messiah, αὐτὸς Δαυιδ λέγει αὐτὸν κύριον, καὶ πόθεν αὐτοῦ ἐστιν υἱός; The Matthean and Lukan adaptations of this question do not affect its essential function. Jesus’ exegetical question depends upon two popular assumptions about the Psalm which he presents as an apparent contradiction. On one hand, Ps 110:1 is held to be messianic, on

 Vincent Taylor, The Gospel According to St Mark: The Greek Text with Introduction, Notes and Indexes (London: MacMillan, 1952), p. 491. Cf. 11QPsa and other material claiming David as a prophet. Cf. Maarten. J. J. Menken, ‘The Psalms in Matthew’s Gospel,’ in The Psalms in the New Testament (ed. Steve Moyise and Maarten J. J. Menken; New Testament and the Scriptures of Israel; London: T. & T. Clark, 2004), p. 74.  The traditional material designating David as a prophet is discussed in the previous chapter in relation to Acts 2.

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the other it is understood to be written by David.²⁷¹ The problem is that if the citation is about the Messiah and its author is David, the Messiah is depicted as κύριος in relation to David, not υἱός. The Messiah, then, must be understood to be greater than David, not his (presumably inferior) son. It is the notion of the Davidic authorship of the Psalm which is decisive. The interpretation of Ps 110:1 is completely dependent upon a conception of David as the author of that psalm.²⁷² Apart from an understanding of the origins of the citation as words of David it cannot be seen to support Jesus’ questioning of the Messiah’s

 Cf. Davies and Allison, Matthew, p. 254; Morna D. Hooker, The Gospel According to St Mark (London: Continuum, 1991), p. 293; Alfred Plummer, The Gospel According to St Luke (ICC; Edinburgh: T. & T. Clark, 1898), p. 472; Leon Morris, The Gospel according to Matthew (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans:/ Leicester: Apollos, 1992), p. 565; D. E. Nineham, Saint Mark (London: SCM, 1963), p. 329 and Ernst Lohmeyer, Das Evangelium des Markus (Göttingen: Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 1937), pp. 261– 262. Taylor, Mark, p. 492 astutely notes that there is no evidence of a messianic interpretation in Rabbinic literature until Gen. Rab. 85, though Justin’s Trypho suggests a 2rd Century messianic reading of Ps 110:1 as referring to Hezekiah. Nolland, Matthew, p. 916 suggests that the 11QMelch could be understood as evidence of earlier Messianic interpretation of Ps 110, though this text only relates to v.4 of the psalm. Nolland also notes that a Messianic reading of Ps 110 seems very plausible as a 1st Century interpretation, even though there is no specific evidence for it. ‘A messianic understanding of the psalm would certainly fit well with the postexilic vision of an eschatological future in which the kingship of Yahweh would become universally effective, but the messianic reading would not have been thought of as excluding other readings.’ Barry C. Davis, ‘Is Psalm 110 a Messianic Psalm?’ BSac 157 (2000), pp. 160 – 173 argues that Psalm 110 may in fact have been a messianic psalm and that there are good reasons to associate it with David as author. Rather interestingly, Davis’ article (which is primarily an historical study) asks the same basic question of the text as does the Davidssohnfrage: how does the identity of the psalm’s author affect our estimation of the identity of ‫ אדני‬in v.1?  This is something clearly noted by Ezra P. Gould, The Gospel According to St Mark (ICC; Edinburgh: T. & T. Clark, 1996), p. 236 in his discussion of the problems raised by the difficulty of accurately attributing the psalm to David. ‘The explanation that will account for all other cases of this kind, viz., that the authorship is of no account, leaving him free to accept the current view as a mere matter of nomenclature and identification, without committing him to an endorsement of it, will not do here, since the argument turns on the authorship.’ Cf. Taylor, Mark, p. 492 and W. R. G. Loader, ‘Christ at the Right Hand – Ps. CX. 1 in the New Testament,’ NTS 24 (1978), p. 200, Oscar Cullmann, The Christology of the New Testament (trans. Shirley C. Guthrie and Charles A. M. Hall; London: SCM, 1959), p. 131, Herbert W. Bateman, ‘Psalm 110:1 and the New Testament,’ BSac 149 (1992), p. 445; Menken, ‘Psalms in Matthew’, p. 74 and France, Jesus and the Old Testament, p. 102. It is rather unfortunate that France’s discussion of the Davidic authorship of the psalm in relation to the Davidssohnfrage (pp. 168 – 169) is limited to the question of whether it is historically accurate to claim the psalm as Davidic.

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Davidic identity.²⁷³ The text itself otherwise bears no relation to the ‘Son of David’ under discussion. In this setting, the Messianic potential of Ps 110:1, indeed the very meaning of the text, is seen to be dependent upon understanding the identity of its author. David as the assumed author of the Psalm is seen to define and limit the possible meaning of the text so as to support Jesus’ questioning of the Messiah’s status as ‘Son of David.’ It is as though Jesus seeks to ‘re-contextualise’ the citation as words of David in order to find their correct interpretation. Unlike the more detailed exegetical uses of the notion of Davidic authorship in Acts 2, which actively assert the historical nature of that authorship as a thing of the past, separated from the present by the death of David, the historical nature of the origins of Ps 110:1 are assumed in the Davidssohnfrage. The pericope does not seek to use aorist verbs of David’s speaking or writing to indicate that the citation belongs to the past, unlike Acts 2:31 and the use there of ἐλάλησεν. That David would have been considered a figure from the past is beyond doubt and certainly the present indicatives λέγων, λέγει and καλεῖ in the Matthean and Lukan citation formulae and the exegetical questions of each version should not be taken to suggest otherwise.²⁷⁴ The exegetical technique of the Davidssohnfrage must be regarded as ‘historical’, conforming to a significant extent to the examples of the previous chapters, since a scriptural text is interpreted as something fundamentally contingent upon the historical context from which it originated, in this case its author. This understanding of how Jesus’ exegetical question works is uncontroversial and, as has been noted, appears to find expression in much of the scholarly literature, though it has not been described as ‘historical’ nor seen as an unusual approach to Scripture in so far as the Synoptic Gospels are concerned.

 Franz Delitzsch, Biblical Commentary on the Psalms, vol. III (trans. David Eaton; London: Hodder and Stoughton, 1889), p. 161 ‘The inference, which it is left to the Pharisees to draw, rests upon the two admitted presuppositions, that Ps. cx. is Davidic and that it is prophetic-messianic, i. e. that in it the coming Messiah stands objectively before David’s mind. For if those interrogated had been able to answer that David does not speak there of the coming Messiah, but puts into the mouth of the people words regarding himself or regarding the Davidic king in general, the question would have lacked the background that made it convincing as an argument.’ Delitzsch’s claim here that the Messianic significance of Ps 110:1 would have been readily accepted prior to the ministry of Jesus lacks any clear evidence.  Certainly, active and present speech is to be understood as an extra and special characteristic of God’s communication through Scripture in New Testament texts. This is clear in the Lukan version of the exegetical question here which, whilst presenting David’s speech as belonging to the present, locates it specifically ἐν βίβλῳ ψαλμῶν. This is typical of Luke’s reference to Scripture, which combines detail concerning the source of the citation (either a text or a figure from Israel’s past) with the notion of its present expression. Cf. Acts 2:25, 34, 7:48 and 8:34.

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It certainly does seem quite unlikely that the exegetical argument of the Davidssohnfrage corresponds to any rabbinic method of interpretation existing prior to Mark.²⁷⁵ David Daube argues persuasively that the controversy discourse in Matt 22:15 – 46 follows the ‘four types of questions’ form seen in b. Nid. 69b.²⁷⁶ In particular, the Davidssohnfrage demonstrates the haggadic interest of the final question and its change of the interrogated character to the questioner. Yet, despite this basic final form similarity, Daube is unable to explain the specific argument of Matthew’s fourth question.²⁷⁷ Whilst he, along with Jeremias, consider Jesus’ exegetical question to be an haggadic antinomy, it is not clear that this is so.²⁷⁸ The antinomy question typically cites an apparent contradiction between two different passages of Scripture. The Davidssohnfrage does not do this. Instead the apparent contradiction is between the received tradition of the Messiah as the Son of David and idea that Ps 110:1 is Messianic and originally written or spoken by David. It is the idea of David as author of Ps 110:1 which is seen to contradict the view of the Messiah that Jesus calls into question. Despite this, the exegetical argument of the Davidssohnfrage has attracted almost no scholarly interest at all, suggesting that it may be somewhat unambiguous. But it really is a departure from the principal patterns of exegesis in the Synoptic Gospels which, as was suggested above, typically follow rabbinic or charismatic approaches. The Davidssohnfrage appears to use a basic form of the exegetical technique used in Acts 2 and 13. Could it be that it preceded these examples of the argument? Could the pericope be seen to explain the origins of the arguments in Acts and Hebrews? This question is one of historicity: Does the Davidssohnfrage represent the teaching of the historical Jesus? These questions will be addressed below. Before that, a review of the various scholarly

 Yet Daniel C. Olsen, ‘Matthew 22:1– 14 as Midrash,’ CBQ 67:3 (2005), pp. 435 – 453 is able to show that the first part of Matt 22 is in fact heavily indebted to Rabbinic exegetical practice in its midrashic treatment of Zeph 1. However, regarding the Davidssohnfrage, it is perhaps significant that this pericope is not even mentioned in M. D. Goulder, Midrash and Lection in Matthew (London: SPCK, 1974) except on p. 13 where it features in Goulder’s discussion of the term γραματεύς.  David Daube, The New Testament and Rabbinic Judaism (London: Athlone Press, 1956), pp. 166 – 169. Cf. Lohse, ‘υἱὸς Δαυίδ’, p. 485 and Gerhard Schneider, ‘Die Davidssohnfrage (Mk 12,35 – 37),’ Bib. 53:1 (1972), pp. 81– 82.  Whilst Daube, ‘Four Types of Question,’ p. 48 claims that the final haggadic antinomy question harmonises the apparent contradiction by means of ‘distinction’ in both the Davidssohnfrage and b. Nidda 69b ff., it is not clear that this happens in the Davidssohnfrage. As noted above, the answer to Jesus’ exegetical question itself is not clear and it could be that the ‘correct’ answer is the wholesale rejection of the notion of the Messiah as Son of David.  Jeremias, Theology, p. 259.

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interpretations of the pericope will be offered in order to demonstrate that whilst its exegetical technique is relatively straightforward, if unusual, the meaning of the pericope itself is highly ambiguous. This ambiguity needs to be understood before any discussion of its historicity is attempted.

3.1.4 The Ambiguity of the Davidssohnfrage Several questions regarding the theological purpose of the Davidssohnfrage are yet to be answered conclusively. Does it deny the Davidic sonship of the Messiah? Is Jesus being proclaimed as God, as Son of God, as Son of Man, as Son of David or as a son of David? Is the pericope actually Christological or simply an abstract reflection on the identity of the Messiah? There appears to be little consensus regarding any of these questions. If one were to read the pericope in isolation, one would have to conclude that ‘Son of David’ is rejected as a description or title for the Messiah. The question αὐτὸς Δαυιδ λέγει αὐτὸν κύριον, καὶ πόθεν αὐτοῦ ἐστιν υἱός; seems to expect the answer ‘he can’t be David’s son.’ This is the position of William Wrede, C. H. Dodd, Rudolf Bultmann and Christoph Burger (though, for Burger, this reading is most closely associated with the pre-Markan pericope).²⁷⁹ However, this perceived rejection is problematic for at least two reasons. Firstly, the notion of a Davidic Messiah was part of 1st Century Palestinian Jewish orthodoxy, having developed from certain significant passages of the Hebrew Bible.²⁸⁰ It

 William Wrede, Vorträge und Studien (Tübingen: Mohr Siebeck, 1907), pp. 166 ff.; C. H. Dodd, According to the Scriptures: The Sub-structure of New Testament Theology (London: Fontana, 1965), p. 120; Bultmann, Synoptic Tradition, pp. 136 – 137 and Burger, Jesus als Davidssohn, pp. 52– 59.  Much of this development of the Messianic Son of David tradition is documented to quite a late date, but it seems clear that its essential elements were derived early on from popular texts of the Hebrew Bible. Pss Sol 17:21 appears to be the first to use the title ‘Son of David’ in its request, Ἰδέ, κύριε, καὶ ἀνάστησον αὐτοῖς τὸν βασιλέα αὐτῶν υἱὸν Δαυιδ εἰς τὸν καιρόν, ὃν εἳλου σύ, ὁ θεός, τοῦ βασιλεῦσαι ἐπὶ Ισραηλ παῖδά. Indeed, John P. Meier, A Marginal Jew: Rethinking the Historical Jesus, Vol. II (New York: Doubleday, 1994), pp. 257– 260 suggests that the notion of messianic Son of David is unique to this material. Marinus de Jonge, Jewish Eschatology, Early Christian Christology and the Testaments of the Twelve Patriarchs (NovTSup 63; Brill: Leiden, 1991), p. 137 suggests that the use of υἱὸν Δαυιδ in Pss Sol may not be titular. Qumranic Davidic Messiahship texts appear to prefer the more scriptural designation ‫צמח דויד‬. Cf. 4Q252 5:4, and 4QFlor 1:11 perhaps derived from Isa 11:1– 2. Other important texts in the development of the tradition include 2 Sam 7:8 – 29, Isa 9:5 – 7, 11:1– 10, Jer 23:5 – 8 and Mic 5:2. John Barton, ‘The Messiah in Old Testament Theology,’ in King and Messiah in Israel and the Ancient Near East: Proceedings of the Oxford Old Testament Seminar (ed. John Day; JSOTSup 270; Sheffield: Sheffield

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would be remarkable for Jesus to reject this tradition outright. According to Fitzmyer, it cannot be the case that Jesus is refuting the Davidic sonship of the Messiah, since this would have been understood as a ‘denial of the Scriptures’, considering that the concept of the Davidic Messiah was so well established. Moreover, such a claim would not be consistent with traditions of Jesus as both Messiah and Son of David.²⁸¹ This constitutes the second problem with the approach taken by Wrede, Dodd, Bultmann and Burger. The Synoptic Gospels contain so many references to Jesus as the Son of David that it seems most unlikely that the tradition is totally rejected. However, Burger suggests that there is an historical tension evidenced in the Synoptic Gospels which contain both genealogical confirmation of Jesus’ Davidic descent alongside the Davidssohnfrage which appears to deny the possibility of such descent.²⁸² Burger posits a Traditionsgeschichte which assumes an earlier period in which the Davidic status of Jesus was connected merely to his status as Messiah, achieved through his resurrection (as in Rom 1:3 – 4) and assumes a later stage in which Jesus’ Davidic identity began to be associated with his genealogical descent. Both stages are reflected in the final forms of the Matthew and Luke. However, this reconstruction of a possible history of the ‘son of David’ concept is deeply problematic on account of the numerous judgements about the dating of relevant New Testament passages, all of which are open to question. W. D. Davies and Dale C. Allison, along with a majority of commentators on the Davidssohnfrage, suggest that the Son of David tradition is not denigrated by Jesus, but that

Academic Press, 1998), pp. 374– 379 provides a helpful account of the development of the idea of the Messiah based on the notion of the ‘feedback loop,’ whilst noting the extent to which scholarship on the Messiahs of the intertestamental period is affected by Christian theological assumptions. According to Barton, the traditions of messianic theology developed interpretations of scriptural texts that progressed far beyond the original scope of such texts, whilst also employing latent notions encapsulated in these texts. W. G. Lambert, ‘Kingship in Ancient Mesopotamia,’ in King and Messiah in Israel and the Ancient Near East: Proceedings of the Oxford Old Testament Seminar (ed. John Day; JSOTSup 270; Sheffield: Sheffield Academic Press, 1998), pp. 58 – 61 provides something of the background for the concepts of the sacredness of the royal dynasty (which he describes as a Babylonian innovation, witnessed in the Cyrus Cylinder) and the divine status of the monarch (a Mesopotamian innovation, departing from Sumerian notions of the king as steward serving a territorial deity).  Fitzmyer, ‘The Son of David Tradition,’ p. 44. Cf. Plummer, Luke, p. 473 and Marshall, Gospel of Luke, p. 744. Morris, Matthew, p. 566 suggests that the Davidic sonship of the Messiah is not denied, rather the unusual (since ‘it was axiomatic that [a father’s] sons were less significant) notion of a descendant possessing greater authority than David is asserted. Cf. Ferdinand Hahn, The Titles of Jesus in Christology: Their History in Early Christianity (trans. Harold Knight and George Ogg; London: Lutterworth, 1963), pp. 245 – 246.  Burger, Jesus als Davidssohn, pp. 90 – 91.

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it is taken to resemble a half truth.²⁸³ This conclusion is supported by Morna D. Hooker who notes that the use of a negative question (like that in Mk 12:37 par.) is often used to evoke a comparison in Semitic literature and that a negative question need not demand a negative answer, but rather serves to highlight the conundrum.²⁸⁴ Joachim Jeremias also denies the possibility of a refutation of the notion of Jesus as the Son of David, though his suggestion that the Davidssohnfrage refers Jesus’ status as Son of David to his earthly life (and his separate status as Lord to his exalted session following the resurrection) lacks clear evidence.²⁸⁵ Oscar Cullmann offers a synthesis of the views of Bultmann and the majority view of Davies and Allison et al. He suggests that, whilst the Davidic descent of Jesus is not being denied in the Davidssohnfrage, it is being undermined as the primary explanation of his identity. The Synoptic Gospels portray Jesus as rejecting ‘the political messianic ideal which the claim to be the descendant of David especially emphasises.’²⁸⁶ Cullmann points out that Mk

 Davies and Allison, Matthew, pp. 250 – 251. Cf. the slightly ambiguous treatment in Gould, Mark, p. 235; W. F. Albright and C. S. Mann, Matthew: A New Translation with Introduction and Commentary (ABC; New York: Doubleday, 1971), p. 275; Morris, Matthew, p. 566; Taylor, Mark, p. 493; de Jonge, Jewish Eschatology, p. 139; Marshall, Gospel of Luke, p. 746; Nolland, Matthew, p. 916; idem, Luke 18:35 – 24:53 (WBC 35; Texas: Word Books, 1993), p. 971; Marcus, Way of the Lord, pp. 135 and 139 – 145; France, Jesus and the Old Testament, p. 10; Lohse, ‘υἱὸς Δαυὶδ’, TDNT 8. p. 484 (who suggests that the expression in the Davidssohnfrage is interpreted in the same manner as Rom 1:3 and 2 Tim 2:8) and Cullmann, Theology, p. 132. This is the essence also of Albert Schweitzer, The Quest of the Historical Jesus: A Critical Study of its Progress from Reimarus to Wrede (trans. W. Montgomery; London: SCM, 1954), p. 393. ‘How can the Christ…be addressed by David in the Psalm as his Lord? The answer is: by reason of the metamorphosis and Parousia in which natural relationships are abolished and the scion of David’s line who is the predestined Son of Man shall take possession of his unique glory.’ Byrne, ‘Jesus as Messiah,’ p. 89 suggests that this careful modification of Messianic theology is indicated in Luke’s choice of πῶς over πόθεν. ‘As Luke’s slight but significant alteration of the Markan formulation (“how” [πῶς], not “whence” [πόθεν], 20:44) makes clear, the issue is not whether the Messiah is David’s son or not, but how he can be both “son” and “Lord” as Ps 110:1 suggests. The question is left hanging at this point.’  Hooker, Mark, p. 292.  Joachim Jeremias, New Testament Theology, Volume One: The Proclamation of Jesus (trans. John Bowden; London: SCM, 1971), pp. 259 & 276n.  Cullmann, Christology, p. 132. Cf. Nineham, Mark, p. 329 for a similar reading. Cullman relates the Davidssohnfrage to typically rabbinic notions of a political and military Messiah. Cf. Philip S. Alexander, ‘The King Messiah in Rabbinic Judaism,’ in King and Messiah in Israel and the Ancient Near East: Proceedings of the Oxford Old Testament Seminar (ed. John Day; JSOTSup 270; Sheffield: Sheffield Academic Press, 1998), p. 472. Cf. also, Sigmund Mowinckel, He that Cometh: The Messiah Concept on the Old Testament and Later Judaism (trans. G. W. Anderson; Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2005), pp. 4– 9 and Schneider, ‘Davidssohnfrage’, p. 65.

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3:31 ff. features the biological family of Jesus whilst making it clear that they are of little significance to Jesus’ claim to authority, suggesting that the Davidssohnfrage does the same by distancing Jesus from his Davidic descent. Against this view, it seems unlikely that Jesus reinterprets the Son of David tradition to assert a non-military and apolitical Messiah, though this is undoubtedly a feature of the Synoptic presentation of Jesus. If this were the case the choice of Ps 110:1 as a Messianic text with its stress upon the violent subjection of all things τῷ κυρίῳ μου would be most inappropriate.²⁸⁷ Yet it has also been argued that the Davidssohnfrage, at least in its Markan form, does not stand in the ‘Son of David’ tradition at all. Bruce Chilton, in what has become a quite popular essay, notes that the title υἰόν Δαυὶδ is not used in Mark, and that Mark instead wishes to portray Jesus as an indefinite ‘son of David’: a Solomonic healer, exorcist and teacher.²⁸⁸ However the evidence for the Solomonic ‘ben David’ argued for by Chilton seems to be limited and his thesis has not been universally persuasive. One problem with it is that it appears not to take into account the clear allusions to kingship which accompany the Son of David motif. A thorough examination of these is offered by Sherman E. Johnson, who notes, for example, the likely reference to Num 27:17 and 1 Kings 22:17 in Mark’s version of the feeding of the five thousand and the possible parallels between Bartimaeus’ declaration and descriptions in Tacitus and Cassius Dio of Vespasian’s miracles.²⁸⁹ Johnson also notes that if the Gospel traditions reflect historical events in the life of Jesus, then the prevailing interpretation of Jesus and his claims to authority was essentially royal. He notes that the request of

 Marshall, Gospel of Luke, pp. 744– 745. Cf. Bruce Chilton, ‘Jesus ben David: Reflections on the Davidssohnfrage,’ JSNT 14:1 (1982), p. 91 and N. T. Wright, Jesus and the Victory of God (London: SPCK, 1996), p. 509.  Chilton, ‘Jesus ben David’, pp. 92 ff. Cf. Dennis C. Dulling, ‘Solomon, Exorcism, and the Son of David,’ HTR 68:3 (1975), pp. 235 – 252 who provides the inspiration for Chilton’s reading of the Son of David. Chilton’s non titular ben David is taken up by Nolland, Luke, p. 971 based on a lack of early evidence for titular usage. Cf. also de Jonge, Jewish Eschatology, p. 140 and Burger, Jesus als Davidssohn, pp. 90 – 91.  Sherman E. Johnson, ‘The Davidic Royal Motif in the Gospels,’ JBL 87:2 (1968), pp. 136 – 137. Johnson is aware that the latter claim is particularly problematic, particularly in respect of the very late date it demands for the Gospel of Mark. In addition to this, Jack Dean Kingsbury, ‘The title “Son of David” in Matthew’s Gospel,’ JBL 95:4 (1976), p. 592 notes the particularly limited scope of the healing ministry directly associated with the title ‘Son of David’, perhaps significantly that such healings are not of larger groups of people. This suggests that healing ministry is perhaps not that important in the Synoptic Gospels’ presentations of Jesus as Son of David. Cf. Gould, Mark, pp. 205 – 206 who, writing on the triumphal entry of Jesus into Jerusalem, comments that ‘the acceptance of [Jesus] as King and not merely as Prophet, was what he demanded.’

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James and John to sit at Jesus’ right hand in Mk 10:37 suggests this interpretation.²⁹⁰ Here, it is important to note that in this pericope it is merely the disciple’s understanding of status that is denied, not the royal nature of Jesus’ significance in favour of his identity as Chilton’s ‘ben David.’ A radically different interpretation of the Davidssohnfrage is offered by Joel Marcus. Marcus argues that the Davidssohnfrage asserts the divinity of Jesus in its apparent attribution of the title κύριος to him. Although in [each instance in Mark] κύριος can be read in its secular meaning of “master,” “owner,” the attentive Markan reader would probably discern a deeper nuance, especially in view of the widespread and early Christian transference to Jesus of κυρίος as a divine designation.²⁹¹

Marcus’ interpretation perhaps misses an important feature of the Davidssohnfrage: that it is based upon a question about whose son the Messiah is and that therefore it cannot simply be that the Messiah is being named as κύριος. Whilst it is clear in scholarly discussion that a certain form of sonship is being denied or modified, it is not always noted that Jesus’ question τίνος υἱός ἐστιν; appears to demand that the Messiah be thought of as a son of some kind, even if not the Son of David. Jesus’ question expects an answer which will denote the Messiah as a son. Jack Dean Kingsbury, whose thesis is that the title Son of David has a secondary significance in Matthew to the title Son of God, the former referring only to Jesus’ earthly life and ministry, argues that Jesus’ question in the Matthean Davidssohnfrage expects the answer ‘Son of God.’²⁹² But why ‘Son of God’? Even if

 Johnson, ‘The Davidic Royal Motif,’ p. 138  Marcus, Way of the Lord, pp. 38 – 39. Cf. Watts, ‘Mark,’ p. 222 who notes that the Markan (and Matthean) context of the Davidssohnfrage, so close to Mk 12:29 has used κυρίος to refer to God, also argues that this is Mark’s intended reading. The same could also be said for Luke, however, where κυρίος is used in this sense in Luke 20:37, just prior to the Davidssohnfrage. Cf. Daniel Johansson, ‘Kyrios in the Gospel of Mark,’ JSNT 33.1 (2010), pp. 116 – 117.  Kingsbury, ‘Son of David’, p. 596. If Kingsbury is correct here, Yigal Levin, ‘“Son of God” and “Son of David”: The “Adoption” of Jesus into the Davidic Line,’ JSNT 28:4 (2006), pp. 415 – 442 offers an impressive explanation, in Graeco- Roman terms, of how Matthew and Luke hold the notions of divine and Davidic sonship together (p. 434): ‘the authors of both Matthew and Luke, faced with the dual traditions of both Jesus’ Davidic Messianity and his Divine Sonship, dealt with the obvious contradiction in the only way that would have seemed natural to a subject of the Julio-Claudian and Flavian Principate: by assuming that Jesus, Son of God, could have been adopted into the royal line of Israel, all the time retaining his status as θεοῦ υἱός.’ Ep. Barn. 12:10 – 11, which appears to be dependent upon the Davidssohnfrage, concludes discussion

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this title is preeminent in Matthew, perhaps ‘Son of Man’ has a stronger association with the themes of Lordship, dominion and the right hand of God seen in Ps 110:1? The association of Ps 110:1 with the Son of Man of Dan 7:13 is an important element in the allusion to Ps 110:1 in Mark 14:62 par. and Acts 7:55 – 56, as well as those in Sib. Or. 2:241– 245 and Apoc. Peter 6. Fritz Neugebauer suggests that by the end of the intertestamental period the titles ‘Messiah,’ ‘Son of David’ and ‘Son of Man’ had become almost synonymous, and that the Davidssohnfrage should be read as standing within the Son of Man tradition.²⁹³ This interpretation partly depends upon the Markan version of Ps 110:1 which incorporates an element of Ps 8:6, which, as was suggested above, may not reflect a Markan initiative. Moreover, in direct contradiction of Neugebauer, Fitzmyer claims that there is no evidence that the Son of Man tradition was linked to that of the Messiah in pre-Christian Judaism and that the Son of Man interpretation of the Davidssohnfrage is unlikely.²⁹⁴

of Ps 110:1 by asserting that Jesus must hold the title ‘Son of God,’ by virtue of his status as Lord. Cf. Albl, And Scripture must not be Broken, p. 232.  Fritz Neugebauer, ‘Die Davidssohnfrage (Mark XII. 35 – 7 Parr.) und der Menschensohn,’ NTS 21:1 (1974), pp. 91– 96. Indeed, this appears to reflect an association demonstrated in Mark’s use of Ps 110:1 in the Passion Narrative (p. 108): ‘Wenn sich Jesus vor dem Synhedrium explizit mit Dan. vii. 13 und Ps. cx. 1 verbündet, so wird mit der beiderseits bejahten Offenbarungsautorität zugleich die Messianologie des Täufers wiederholt, freilich implizit.’ This seems to reflect the similar conclusions of Raymond E. Brown, The Death of the Messiah: From Gethsemane to the Grave (London: Geoffrey Chapman, 1994), pp. 506 – 512 who notes that the a distinctive ‘Son of Man’ tradition, based on Dan 7, was active by the New Testament period and that it entailed notions of Messianic kingship. Brown also notes that this is expressed in specific relation to Ps 110:1 in Mk 14:62 parr. and the association of that text with the Son of Man. This perhaps adds some further evidence towards the explanation of the Davidssohnfrage as relating to the Son of Man, though the Messiah/Son of Man association has been vigorously contested as is seen below.  Fitzmyer, ‘The Son of David Tradition,’ p. 45. However, Francis J. Moloney, ‘The Re-interpretation of Psalm VIII and the Son of Man Debate,’ NTS 27:5 (1981), pp. 658 – 663 argues that Son of Man and Son of David are clearly associated in Matthew and that this messianic understanding of the title ‘Son of Man’ is clearly seen in the Walton edition of the Targum on Psalms which has a greater interest in an individual character than is typically the case in rabbinic interpretation of Ps 8:6. Moloney also notes that Ps 8:2 is cited in Matt 21:16 and therefore suggests that the Davidssohnfrage ought to be understood in light of the Son of Man from Ps 8:6. This is somewhat tenuous. We cannot be sure that any of the Synoptic authors associated Ps 8:6 with an eschatological Son of Man and even if Matthew did, it is unlikely that he would intend such an allusion to still be present in the mind of his audience as they come to the Davidssohnfrage so much later. Albl, And Scripture cannot be Broken, pp. 227– 228 likewise understands the Markan and Matthean Davidssohnfragen to relate Ps 110:1 with Ps 8:6 on the basis of their use of ὑποκάτω τῶν ποδῶν σου. Cf. Terrence Callan, ‘Ps 110:1 and the Origin of the

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It might actually be the case that the Davidssohnfrage finds its meanings in the distinctive emphases of the individual Gospels. Indeed most studies of the pericope feature its use in only a single Gospel. For example, I Howard Marshall suggests that Jesus’ unanswered question was regarded by Luke as a mystery which found its solution in the resurrection. The one who was David’s Son (as Luke clearly believed, 3:23 – 38) became David’s lord by being exalted. But this means that for Luke the question was ‘If the Messiah is David’s son, how can he be his lord?’, rather than ‘If the Messiah is David’s lord, how can he be his son?’²⁹⁵

Likewise, the references to the Son of David in Mark occur exclusively in close proximity to Jesus’ visit to Jerusalem prior to his death, suggesting that the Davidssohnfrage ought to be interpreted as proclaiming a royal or priestly Messiah.²⁹⁶ Kim Paffenroth contends that Matthew’s Davidssohnfrage is to be understood in the light of the Matthean emphasis upon Jesus’ anointing and the Matthean tendency to redact teaching and exorcism material into accounts of healing.²⁹⁷ These Matthean characteristics are taken to illustrate the distinctive emphasis upon Jesus’ identity as the Son of David, yet at the same time showing that Jesus is something more than David. Whilst David in 2 Sam 5:8 was known to have forbidden the blind and the lame to enter the Jerusalem temple, Jesus is shown to heal the blind and the lame in the temple in Matt 21:14. In this way, the Davidssohnfrage is understood by Paffenroth as claiming that Jesus is the Son of David, yet as David’s Lord, superior to David. It is the typological figure of David which assumes the most importance for Paffenroth’s understanding of the Davidssohnfrage. The Matthean identification of the title ‘Son of David’ is also noted by Lövestam:

Expectation that Jesus Will Come Again,’ CBQ 44 (1982), p. 627 who notes that these concepts are clearly associated in b. Hag. 14a and b. Sanh. 38b and suggests their importance used together in the development of the early Christian belief in the parousia of Christ.  Marshall, Gospel of Luke, p. 745. Marshall continues: ‘If this understanding of Luke’s use of the pericope is correct, it follows that the original force was somewhat different. It also makes it less likely that this pericope arose in the early church.’  Cf. Marcus, Way of the Lord, pp. 135 – 138, Johnson, ‘The Davidic Royal Motif,’ p. 138 ff., Watts, ‘Mark,’ p. 222 and idem., ‘The Psalms in Mark’s Gospel,’ in The Psalms in the New Testament (ed. Steve Moyise and Maarten J. J. Menken; New Testament and the Scriptures of Israel; London: T. & T. Clark, 2004), pp. 37– 40 though Watts appears to rely too much on Mark’s association of Ps 110:1 and 110:4 for which there is little evidence.  Kim Paffenroth, ‘Jesus as Anointed and Healing Son of David in the Gospel of Matthew,’ Bib. 80:4 (1999), pp. 547– 554.

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Chez Matthieu l’usage du titre est nettement plus étendu, et il est lié d’une façon notable à la function de médecinthaumaturge de Jésus. En dehors de la péricope de Jéricho (20:29 ss.), Jésus est nommé deux fois Fils de David par des gens qui demandent son aide contre la maladie: les deux aveugles de 9:27 et la Cananéenne de 15:22. Et la guérison par Jésus d’un possédé, aveugle et sourd-muet, en 12:22 ss., provoque la stupeur de la foule qui se demande s’il n’est pas le Fils de David.²⁹⁸

But Chilton’s thesis on the Solomonic ben David is similar, whilst primarily related to Mark. It seems likely that the ambiguity of the Davidssohnfrage is more than the result of the distinctive emphases of each Synoptic Gospel. There is clearly not enough material to elucidate a persuasive account of the pericope. Even though one might regard the view that the Davidssohnfrage does not deny Jesus’ Davidic sonship (but merely proclaims him as something more than contemporary expectations of a Son of David) as the dominant view in critical scholarship, there is no consensus on the specific nature of what is being said in the pericope. Yet, whilst each of these approaches articulates an interpretation of the Davidssohnfrage in terms of the Christological motifs of the different Synoptic Gospels, it has been suggested that the pericope may not in fact be Christological. The question of the identity of the Messiah is, in a sense, a theoretical one since it is not applied directly to the identity of Jesus.²⁹⁹ This calls into question the very approach taken by the majority of commentators of using the Christological emphases of the Gospels as frameworks within which to read the Davidssohnfrage and leaves the discussion characterised by significant uncertainty. Whilst the exegetical technique of the Davidssohnfrage is straightforward (though unusual) the same cannot be said for the pericope as a whole. As is noted in the above discussion, its meaning and purpose have proven notoriously elusive.³⁰⁰ Yet it is precisely this elusive nature which gives substantial grounds

 Evald Lövestam, ‘Jésus fils de David chez les Synoptiques,’ ST 28:1 (1974), p. 98.  R. H. Lightfoot, The Gospel Message of St. Mark (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1950), p. 36. Cf. Nolland, Matthew, p. 915 who notes Matthew’s complete avoidance of Christological titles, not using the Markan υἱὸς Δαυιδ. The idea of the Davidssohnfrage as abstract ‘Messianology’ is no doubt supported by Christopher Rowland, ‘Christ in the New Testament,’ in King and Messiah in Israel and the Ancient Near East: Proceedings of the Oxford Old Testament Seminar (ed. John Day; JSOTSup 270; Sheffield: Sheffield Academic Press, 1998), p. 485 who points out that ‘the evidence for Jesus claiming messianic status is small and probably only indirect at best.’  Cullmann, Christology, pp. 130 – 131 ‘This has been one of the most difficult of Jesus’ sayings to explain, and it has been interpreted in many different ways. The difficulty lies in the all too marked brevity of Jesus’ words here as all three Synoptic Gospels report them. One almost has the impression that the evangelists themselves did not know how to explain them.’ Indeed, it has even been suggested that the Markan Davidssohnfrage is deliberately elusive. Stephen H.

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for considering it to originate with the teaching of the historical Jesus, allowing the ‘historical’ type exegetical argument to be traced back to this teaching.

3.2 Historical Hermeneutics and the Historical Jesus What then is the origin of the example of historical interpretation provided in the Davidssohnfrage? Can it be attributed to Jesus himself with any certainty and so be seen to pre-date the similar tradition associated with Pss 16 and 110 in the Acts of the Apostles? It is impossible to say with any certainty whether or not the Davidssohnfrage is an example of the teaching of the historical Jesus. As John Nolland points out, There is no scholarly consensus about whether the material here can be traced to the historical Jesus. But a good part of the difficulty comes from reading too much into the present account on the basis of other NT citations and allusions to Ps. 110(109 LXX):1.³⁰¹

Part of the problem with determining the origins of this pericope is that there simply is little clarity regarding its meaning. Is it asserting developed Christology or an obscure and abstract controversy about the identity of an unknown Messiah? Davies and Allison make this point well when they suggest that the question of the historicity of the episode cannot really be solved when there is no real clarity regarding the meaning of the text.³⁰² This ambiguity of the Davidssohnfrage has been emphasised in the discussion above. Moreover, discussions of the historical Jesus now encounter greater methodological challenges than those encountered at the end of previous ‘quests’ for the historical Jesus. The very principles of historical-critical reasoning employed in historical Jesus research can no longer be taken for granted.³⁰³ In addition to this, significant challenges have been posed to the dominant 20th Century estimations of the historicity of the Gospels. The long-term importance of these challenges in terms of the discussion of specific pericopae, such as the Davidssohnfrage, has yet to be seen. The following discussion will not therefore attempt to argue for the historicity of

Smith, ‘The Function of the Son of David Tradition in Mark’s Gospel,’ NTS 42:4 (1996), pp. 536 – 537 argues that the Markan use of the irregular πόθεν reflects an uncertainty about Jesus’ Davidic status. Cf. Byrne, ‘Jesus as Messiah’, p. 89 and Suhl, ‘Davidssohn,’ p. 57.  Nolland, Matthew, p. 914.  Davies and Allison, Matthew, p. 251.  Cf. Benjamin Sargent, ‘John Milbank and Biblical Hermeneutics: The End of the HistoricalCritical Method,’ HeyJ 53:2 (2012), pp. 253 – 263. The final chapter of this study discusses some of the contemporary challenges to the presuppositions of the older quests for the historical Jesus.

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the Davidssohnfrage, rather it will simply attempt to show that its historicity is plausible and that it may therefore be entertained as a possible source for ‘historical’ type exegetical arguments in the New Testament. Rudolf Bultmann considered the Davidssohnfrage to be a product of the early Markan community rather that a record of the teaching of Jesus, suggesting that the pericope ‘could hardly have had any meaning for Jesus.’³⁰⁴ Even if one accepts the possibility that Jesus understood himself to be the Messiah, argued Bultmann, there is no evidence that Jesus’ Davidic descent was ever a matter of controversy during the life-time of Jesus. Hooker also denies the possible origins of the Davidssohnfrage in the personal teaching of Jesus for a similar reason. Whilst noting that the episode cannot reflect an early Christian controversy regarding the Davidic descent of Jesus since there is no evidence that the claim of Davidic descent was in any way contested, Hooker locates the pericope some way into the early development of Christology. She claims that it represents a ‘clear messianic claim’, ‘totally out of character’ with the teaching of Jesus.³⁰⁵ A similar interpretation is offered by W. R. G. Loader. Loader understands the Davidssohnfrage as asserting the identity of the earthly Jesus as κύριος, just as Marcus more recently. Having plotted a development of the interpretation of Ps 110:1 in the New Testament from a primitive use expressing an immanent parousia, Loader suggests that this pericope must be seen to reflect a late stage in this development.³⁰⁶ However, Loader also admits that his estimation of a late origin is dependent upon the truth of the pericope’s interest in asserting Jesus’ Lordship during his earthly ministry. If Jesus’ discussion of Ps 110:1 is more abstract, simply discussing popular notions of the Messiah, then Loader suggests that it probably does reflect the teaching of the historical Jesus.³⁰⁷ Ferdinand Hahn suggested that the pericope originated with the Hellenistic church on the basis of its use of apparently developed Christological titles, the Septuagint and rabbinic exegetical method.³⁰⁸ However, Marshall presents a

 Bultmann, Synoptic Tradition, p. 136 – 137. Yet Cullmann, Christology, p. 132 argues against this objection, stating that there is simply no evidence of similar thinking about the Messiah in the early Church, concluding that ‘even the claim that the saying is of Hellenistic origin presents more difficulties than the assumption of its genuineness.’  Hooker, Mark, p. 291.  Loader, ‘Christ at the Right Hand’, pp. 201 and 214– 215.  Ibid., pp. 14– 15. In addition to this, Loader also suggests that for the pericope to originate with the historical Jesus, ‫ אדני‬must be taken to mean ‘no more than “master.”’  Hahn, Titles of Jesus, p. 104. A similar description of the role of Ps 110:1 in the early Christian Community is offered by Callan, ‘Ps 110:1’, pp. 625 – 631 who suggests, following Dahl, that Ps 110:1 was used retrospectively to predict the resurrection. Callan follows this logic through to argue that the coupling of this psalm with the Son of Man tradition of Dan 7:13

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very robust critique of each point in Hahn’s case suggesting that it ‘remains possible, and indeed probable, that the saying goes back to Jesus, especially since it has no convincing Sitz im Leben in the early church.’³⁰⁹ Likewise, Neugebauer cautions against too limited a view of the historical Jesus’ own eschatological hope, noting that John the Baptist appears to have expected something much greater than scholars such as Bultmann and Hahn would permit the historical Jesus.³¹⁰ Yet how developed is the Christology (if indeed the pericope is ‘Christological’) of the Davidssohnfrage? It need not necessarily be understood as representing a later move in the early church towards an understanding of Jesus as divine, if indeed it is the case that such an understanding cannot be found in the teaching of the historical Jesus. Albert Schweitzer’s reading of Mk 12:35 – 37, whilst difficult to substantiate in terms of its correlation with the apparent emphases of the Synoptic material (as Bultmann notes), nevertheless explains the Davidssohnfrage in the light of concepts from Jewish Apocalyptic, apparently

provided the basis for proclaiming a parousia through which Jesus would fulfil contemporary messianic expectations. Callan also notes here there the designation τῳ̆ κυρίῳ μου used in Ps 110:1, when combined with Old Testament theophanic language, provided further impetus for proclaiming a future parousia. Since the Davidssohnfrage appears to be more of an abstract discussion, rather than a proof of any specific Christological idea, such as the resurrection, session or parousia, it is difficult to see this pericope as part of the possible Christological development asserted by Callan.  Marshall, Gospel of Mark, pp. 746 – 747. Marshall, of course, concedes that the distinction in the Old Greek versions of Ps 110:1 between ὁ κύριος and τον κυρίον μου is problematic for any view that the pericopae originated in the teaching of Jesus. Marshall does, however, suggest that Fitzmyer permits a similar distinction in Aramaic. Joseph Fitzmyer, ‘The Contribution of Qumran Aramaic to the Study of the New Testament,’ NTS 20:4 (1974), pp. 386 – 390 argues against the perception that there can be no Palestinian background for the distinction drawn from Ps110:1 citing Aramaic examples of the absolute form ‫ מרא‬from 11QTgJob and 1QapGen (cf. the use of ‫מרא‬ in construct form in texts such as Dan 2:47) Fitzmyer asks, ‘can one rule out the possibility that the pun in the Greek reflects an Aramaic form such as ‫אמר מרא למראי תב לימיני‬. ‘the Lord said to my lord, Sit at my right hand?’ Yet, even if this is the case, Stanley E. Porter, ‘Did Jesus Ever Teach in Greek?’ TynB 44:2 (1993), pp. 199 – 235 makes a convincing case for Jesus’ knowledge and use of Greek. He points out just how widespread the popular use of Greek was in Palestine during the New Testament period, relying heavily on Josephus and noting that 80 % of monuments in the Beth She’arim Catacombs have inscriptions in Greek. He also notes that certain scenes in the Gospel, if they are historical, could not have taken place in any other language. This is particularly the case in Jesus’ trial before Pilate, who Porter suggests would not have known a Semitic language, just as Jesus would not have known Latin. He notes that Jesus’ answer to Pilate’s question in Mt 27:11 Parr. σύ λέγεις is not characteristic of the redactional language of any of the Gospels and so probably reflects Jesus’ own Greek words.  Neugebauer, ‘Davidssohnfrage’, pp. 104– 105.

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without referring κύριος to the divinity of Jesus.³¹¹ Moreover, as Chilton argues, the use of titles such as κύριος here does not follow any of the established treatments of early Christianity.³¹² It is therefore difficult to argue that the pericope reflects developed Markan theological emphases. Another objection to the historicity of the Davidssohnfrage comes from Ulrich Luz who makes the unprecedented claim that ‘the exegetical conversation…“functions” on the assumption that the readers of the Gospel know more than do the Pharisees to whom the question is directed.’³¹³ Only the audience are able to see the pericope as Christological since they have read earlier statements in that Jesus is the Christ and the Son of David, as in Matt 1:1.³¹⁴ Luz argues that the Pharisees in Matthew’s version could not possibly have understood Jesus’ question, since they lacked this crucial information. However, it is clear that readers of Matthew, for example, have no real privileged insight into the meaning of the pericope, indeed the apparent contradiction of the Davidic sonship of the Messiah may have confused readers, as the discussion above has shown. Moreover, it is not impossible to regard the pericope as a piece of abstract reflection on the identity of the Messiah offered by Jesus, dissolving the advantage of Matthew’s readers’ privileged access to the meaning of the Davidssohnfrage because of their familiarity with Matthew’s Christology. Collins suggests that the introduction of a new topic of discussion by Jesus is unusual. Because this bears a considerable degree of similarity to Mk 8:27b-30 (which she regards as a pericope composed by Mark) she asserts that the Davidssohnfrage must also be a free Markan composition.³¹⁵ However, Craig A. Evans makes the point that whilst it is unusual for Jesus to introduce a new topic for discussion in the Synoptic Gospels, it is impossible to posit a reason for its invention by the early Church. Jesus’ question about the Messiah is not answered: no point is made and no clarification is achieved.³¹⁶ However, as is noted by Nolland, estimations of the Davidssohnfrage’s historicity which depend upon a clear interpretation are bound to fail due to the apparent complexity of identifying a clear meaning. A significant amount of the discussion of its historicity instead assumes this ambiguity and uses it as a basis for estimating historicity. This approach is taken by Vincent Taylor.

 Schweitzer, Historical Jesus, p. 393. Cf. Bultmann, Synoptic Tradition, p. 137.  Chilton, ‘Jesus ben David’, pp. 89 – 90.  Ulrich Luz, Matthew 21 – 28: A Commentary, trans. Wilhelm C. Linss (Fortress: Minneapolis. 2005), pp. 88 – 89.  Cf. Suhl, ‘Davidssohn,’ p. 75.  Collins, Mark, p. 578.  Craig A. Evans, Mark 8:27 – 16:20 (WBC 34b; Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 2001), p. 270.

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The allusive character of the saying favours the view that it is an original utterance; it half conceals and half reveals the ‘Messianic Secret’. It suggests, but does not state the claim, that Jesus is supernatural in dignity and origin and that His Sonship is no mere matter of human descent. It is difficult to think that the doctrinal beliefs of a community could be expressed in this allusive manner. The intention in a doctrinal statement is that it should be understood, whereas the purpose of this saying is to challenge thought and decision. This is the very idiom of Jesus Himself…But, demonstrably, it is not the tone or method of primitive Christianity. In the earliest preaching and teaching there is nothing tentative, tantalising or allusive.³¹⁷

Likewise, Nolland states the ‘allusiveness’ argument for the historicity of the Davidssohnfrage well: The strongest possible argument in favour of historicity is the very vagueness of the account, well reflected in the multitude of views as to its sense. When the early church used Ps 110:1 in the light of the resurrection, it made its points rather more clearly than is the case here!³¹⁸

Marcus suggests that the ambiguity of the pericope provides evidence for considering it to originate with the historical Jesus. He suggests that if the Davidssohnfrage is attempting to disassociate the title ‘Son of David’ from the Messiah it has no parallels in any First Century Christian or Jewish literature and appears to subvert Mark’s own theology.³¹⁹ If this is the case it is easier to admit that the pericope is ‘totally out of character’ with the teaching of the early Church than it is with the teaching of the more elusive historical Jesus. Chilton notes that whilst the Davidssohnfrage employs the apparently Christological titles of ‘Son of David,’ ‘Messiah’ and ‘Lord’, it is unlikely that the use of such titles suggests that the pericope originated entirely within the early Church. Chilton points out that none of these titles are treated in a standard form. Each of the terms is used in a somewhat unusual way when the passage is place in the context of their normal usage elsewhere in the New Testament. Indeed, the very supposition,

 Taylor, Mark, p. 493. However, it is not entirely clear that the Davidssohnfrage is that ambiguous. Heikki Räisänen, The ‘Messianic Secret’ in Mark’s Gospel (trans. Christopher Tuckett; Edinburgh: T. & T. Clark, 1990), pp. 243 – 244 suggests that the ‘Messianic Secret’ is undermined in Mk 12:35 – 37 by the clearly revelatory function of the pericope. ‘It is true that Jesus does not explicitly identify himself as David’s Lord, for whom the normal messianic term ‘Son of David’ gives too little honour. But it is striking that Mark has done nothing to bring any secrecy into the scene. He could easily have remarked that the people understood nothing of what they had heard. Instead he says only that they heard Jesus gladly.’  Nolland, Luke, p. 972.  Marcus, Way of the Lord, p. 40.

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encouraged by Matthew, Luke and Paul, that ben David is a category of physical descent which imputes to Jesus a theologically significant lineage is what causes our puzzlement when we read this passage…On reflection, then, the so-called christological titles in the passage do not correspond very well to what we, on the basis of ordinary New Testament usage, might expect the early Church to have said about the identity of Jesus.³²⁰

The argument for historicity based upon the allusive nature of the Davidssohnfrage may also be applied to the rather unusual exegetical method employed. As argued above, the exegetical argument is based upon an understanding of Ps 110:1 as written by David, as well is an understanding of the text’s meaning as contingent upon him as author. The Christ must be more than merely a son, a lesser relation, of David since David himself refers to him as Lord. As has been noted in this and previous chapters, such exegetical reasoning is extremely unusual in antiquity. It is worth noting here that it is unique in the Synoptic Gospels themselves.³²¹ At no other point do any of the Synoptic Gospel writers interpret Scripture by referring to a scriptural author. It seems very unlikely, then, that this aspect of the Davidssohnfrage can be explained as the invention of a Gospel writer or his community. At the very least, the unusual exegetical method of this pericope suggests that its core (Ps 110:1 as lemma, an association with Jerusalem and Jesus’ exegetical question) must be understood as pre-Markan. However, John Nolland suggests that the use of scripture here is reflected in the double love command of Matt 22:34– 40par.³²² Though Nolland himself

 Chilton, ‘Jesus ben David’, pp. 89 – 90. As noted above, Chilton’s understanding of ‘ben David’ as a description rather than a title is important for his thesis that the Davidssohnfrage reflects the primitive notion of Jesus as a solomonic teacher and healer. As noted above, this non-titular reading of the David references in Mark’s version is not widely accepted. It is perhaps important that the earliest interpretations of the tradition seen in Matthew and Luke clearly understand the pericope to be about υἱὸς Δαυιδ as a developed title. It is not only the theology of the Davidssohnfrage which is elusive, it has also been notoriously difficult to categorise formcritically. Cf. Martin Dibelius, From Tradition to Gospel (trans. Bertram Lee Woolf; Cambridge and London: James Clarke, 1971), p. 261 seems to regard the Davidssohnfrage as a form of exhortation, framed as part of a critique of the scribes, though there is no reason why, based on Dibelius’ criteria that the pericope could not be understood as a chria, since it is clothed in each Gospel with a more or less specific context. Cf. also Nolland, Luke, p. 970 and Robert C. Tannehill, ‘Varieties of Synoptic Pronouncement Stories,’ Semeia 20 (1981), p. 115. Though Tannehill is not interested in discussing questions of historicity here, this must be seen as another argument for the historicity of the Davidssohnfrage on the basis of its elusive nature.  Indeed, according to Lohmeyer, Markus, p. 262 the very citation formula used in Mark’s Davidssohnfrage is ambiguously uncharacteristic of Mark, suggesting that the pericope is unlikely to be a free Markan composition.  Nolland, Matthew, p. 914. Cf. idem. Luke, pp. 790 – 92.

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does not claim it, this similarity could be used to suggest that the Davidssohnfrage reflects a primarily Markan influence and cannot be traced to the historical Jesus. Yet in Matt 22:34– 40par Jesus does not seek to explain his texts (Deut 6:5 and Lev 19:18) by referring to an assumed author, as is the case in the Davidssohnfrage. It must be maintained that the exegetical style of the Davidssohnfrage really is unique amongst the Synoptic material. However, Hooker suggests that the allusive character of the Davidssohnfrage need not indicate its origins in the teaching of Jesus. It is allusive precisely because it is put into the mouth of Jesus (without the Johannine ‘I am’ to make the identification clear), and it is challenging because the unsolved riddle is left for us to work out. Challenging the teaching of Jesus certainly is, but it is a characteristic of Mark’s style to challenge his readers by posing questions about the true identity of Jesus.³²³

Fitzmyer suggests that the episode is in fact historical and that its form in the Synoptic Gospels is ‘only a torso of the full account.’ ³²⁴ He claims that the elements in Matt 22:41– 46 suggestive of the interpretation of Ps 110:1 as part of a controversy argument indicate an original Sitz im Leben of a much more prolonged rabbinic argument between Jesus and the Pharisees. Here Fitzmyer picks up on the suggestion of Daube, discussed above, that the grouping of four questions (as is the case in Matt 22:15 – 46) follows a standard rabbinic pattern.³²⁵ There can simply be no proof that the Matthean form reflects an event in the life of Jesus more than in Mark.³²⁶ Moreover, the very idea of using the form of the Davidssohnfrage to claim it as originating with the historical Jesus is problematic. In this respect, Adela Yarbro Collins argues that the form-critical problem of the Davidssohnfrage suggests that it is a Markan composition. She claims support for Markan authorship by noting that in this passage and another apparently Markan pericope, Mk 8:27b-30, Jesus is seen to take the

 Hooker, Mark, p. 291.  Fitzmyer, ‘The Son of David Tradition,’ p. 44.  Daube’s contribution to the study of the Davidssohnfrage is of little interest to the present discussion of its historicity. Whilst a possible rabbinic form of argument in Matt 22:15 – 46 might suggest a later origin for the controversy discourse, it contributes little to the discussion of the particular pericopae of which it is constituted, since it relates to redaction rather than composition. Moreover, since Daube does not explain origins of the exegetical argument of the Davidssohnfrage as conforming to forms of rabbinic argument, the same can be said for his discussion of this pericope more generally.  Cf. Repschinski, Controversy Stories, pp. 225 – 230 for an examination of Matthew’s redaction of the pericope into a ‘controversy story’.

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initiative, questioning his audience. ³²⁷ This, though, seems difficult to maintain whilst others vigorously point out how different the Davidssohnfrage is from other Markan material. Whilst Martin Hengel considers the historicity of the Davidssohnfrage to be something not ‘impossible, but which – as its opposite – cannot easily be proved,’ he does suggest that the Christological use of Ps 110:1 (assuming that this in fact features in the Davidssohnfrage) originated in the earliest years of the Jerusalem Church, if not before.³²⁸ This approach to the historicity of the pericope is distinctive in that it attempts to plot it against the development of Christology not, as others have done, by attempting to discern its Christology (which, as has been noted, is problematic) but by focussing on the scriptural text(s) employed. Psalms 8 and 110 belonged to the γραφαί of which Paul speaks in the context of the formula concerning the resurrection in 1 Cor. 15:4, for the resurrection of Jesus implied without further explanation his exaltation to the right hand of God and – at least as a problem – the subjugation of the powers…The Christological use of both psalms and in particular the motif of sessio ad dexteram was material common to early Christian congregations, whether in Corinth, Antioch or Rome, and in my opinion demonstrates incontestably that they go back to the Jerusalem congregation.³²⁹

Whilst Hengel’s work supports the apparent inconclusivity of this discussion of historicity, it is of some importance to note his association of the use of Ps 110:1 with the Jerusalem Church. Recent studies on the historicity of the Gospel traditions more generally may now have something to bear on this discussion.³³⁰ Whilst Richard Bauckham’s work on the Gospel’s use of eyewitness material

 Yarbro Collins, Mark, p. 578.  Martin Hengel, Studies in Early Christology (Edinburgh: T. & T. Clark, 1995), p. 173.  Ibid., pp. 172– 173. Hengel goes on to support this claim by noting Luke’s use of the Ps 110 motif only in the Jerusalem speeches of Acts. In addition to this, he notes that the psalm’s use in the synoptic gospel centres around scenes in Jerusalem, specifically in Jesus’ trial (Mk 14:62 and parallels) and in Mk 12:35 – 37 and parallels: the Davidssohnfrage.  Richard A. Burridge, What Are the Gospels? A Comparison with Graeco-Roman Biography (Michigan: Eerdmans/Dove, 2004) regrettably does not deal with the Davidssohnfrage and it is unclear what the conclusion of his thesis that the Gospels ought to be understood as belonging to a genre of Graeco-Roman βίος might be in regard to the historicity of this pericope. Generally, ‘the βίος genre of the Gospels affects the ‘Quest for the Historical Jesus’, with particular respect to the use of sources by writers of βίοι. The selectivity allowed for by an author to produce his portrait of the subject will form part of the redaction critical approach; however, because this is a life of an historical person written within the lifetime of his contemporaries, there are limits on free composition.’ pp. 249 – 250.

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and the practice of eyewitness referencing does not discuss the Davidssohnfrage, it nevertheless has implications for the study of this pericope. Even though none of the Gospel writers provide specific personal names to accompany the episode, its clear setting in the presence of Jesus’ disciples in Luke may suggest some form of eyewitness reference. Bauckham affirms both the historicity and authority of the twelve disciples, offering a significant discussion of the lists of the twelve, and asserts that the memory of this group had a decisive controlling influence over the formation of Jesus traditions.³³¹ It is not difficult to imagine that [the disciples’] role in the earliest Christian community would include that of authoritative transmitters of the sayings of Jesus and authoritative eyewitnesses of the events of Jesus’ history. If any group in the earliest community was responsible for some kind of formulation and authorization of a body of Jesus traditions, the Twelve are much the most obviously likely to have been that group.³³²

Whilst there is some difference between the Synoptic Gospels regarding the precise setting of the Davidssohnfrage, each Gospel writer affirms a basic public setting as well as an essentially identical exegetical argument. Could this be evidence of some sort of controlling influence over the tradition?³³³ The tradition itself appears to comprise both essential elements, which cannot be significantly altered by a redactor, and vague-yet-essential elements which may be, including the precise nature of the public situation of the episode in Jerusalem and perhaps the precise form of the lemma. Bauckham’s work claims a significant authority for the Jerusalem Church by making it the home of important eyewitnesses who function to preserve the traditions concerning Jesus of Nazareth. This is significant if one considers Hengel’s association of Ps 110 Christology with the Jerusalem Church. When these two notions are held together it is not impossible to regard the Christological use of Ps 110 and the Davidssohnfrage as originating with the historical Jesus, whose memory was preserved within the community of the Jerusalem Church. This is not to say that each New Testament treatment of Ps 110 bears some relation to the preaching of the Jerusalem Church: clearly the  The historical accuracy of eyewitness testimony, as employed by Bauckham, is significantly challenged by Judith C. S. Redman, ‘How Accurate are Eyewitnesses? Bauckham and the Eyewitnesses in the Light of Psychological Research,’ JBL 129:1 (2010), pp. 177– 197 who notes that psychological research highlights the influence of personal factors upon testimony of this sort, such as memory schemas upon memorisation and variation in memory recall.  Richard Bauckham, Jesus and the Eyewitnesses: The Gospels as Eyewitness Testimony (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2006), pp. 95 – 96.  Is it likely that Matthew and Luke would have felt restricted by the Markan source into reproducing a similar context for the Davidssohnfrage? Is there evidence for such a conservative approach to redaction?

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treatment of Ps 110 in Hebrews possesses a sophistication which would be inconceivable as a continuation of such preaching. However, the sudden and substantial importance given to Ps 110 in the early Church may be best explained by the apostolic memory of Jesus’ own use of the psalm suggested here. If the earliest Christians remembered Jesus discussing Ps 110 in relation to the Messiah, even if his discussion was ambiguous, this may explain why Ps 110 features in Christological reflection so early on, without apparent precedent in intertestamental literature.³³⁴  Hengel, Early Christology, pp. 176 – 186 shows that the ‫ לימיני‬motif of Ps 110:1 reflects a common theme of throne sharing in Egyptian and Canaanite mythology, though notes that Ps 110:1 is not a significant feature until the Heikalot literature. He does, however, suggest that Ps 110:1 may have influenced the theology of 1 Enoch, a text which he claims was known to the author of Matthew and which probably influenced the revelation of the Messianic Secret in Mk 14:62. However, 1 Enoch does not appear to make direct reference to Ps 110:1, certainly not in a similarly self-conscious manner to Mk 12:35 – 37 and the influence of Dan 7:13 and Isa 11:1 is perhaps clearer. As Hay, Glory at the Right Hand, p. 23 ‘evidence for pre-Christian interpretations of Ps 110 is ambiguous.’ One cannot always be sure that it is Ps 110 that features in a given text. This is certainly the case regarding Test Job 32:2– 12 where ἐκ δεξιῶν του θεοῦ could be a reference to Ps 110:1 though there is not further evidence to support this. Incidentally, if this is an interpretation of Ps 110:1, the one who sits on this throne at the right of God is Job himself, not a Messianic character. Likewise the Messianic 11QMelch, a text one might expect to refer directly to Ps 110, does not make use of this text. More generally, Ps 110 does not appear to have been of interest to the Qumran community, not least for developing a theology of Israel’s future deliverer. Marcus, Way of the Lord, pp. 133 – 134 suggests that Midr. Ps 110:1 demonstrates a trajectory of eschatological reading of the psalm leading to its New Testament treatment, though this ought to be discounted due to the difficulty in asserting pre-Christian origins to the traditions testified to in Midr. Ps. The use of Ps 110:1 one encounters in the New Testament literature must be understood as demonstrating an entirely novel appreciation of this text. Cf. Loader, p. 199, Davies and Allison, p. 254, Albl, And Scripture cannot be Broken, pp. 221– 222 and Wright, Jesus, p. 508. H. L. Strack and P. Billerbeck, Kommentar zum neuen Testament aus Talmud und Midrasch: Vol IV (Munich: 1922), pp. 452– 460 suggest that the Psalm 110 must have been thought to have had a Messianic referent prior to the New Testament and suggest that the earliest extant rabbinic interpretations lack this Messianic element in reaction to Christian readings of the Psalm, following R. Ishmael. However, whilst it is likely that Rabbinic reading took place with Christian ‘mis-readings’ in mind, there is simply no evidence for a pre-Christian Messianic reading. It is particularly striking in this respect that a Messianic treatment of Ps 110 is absent from the qumranic literature where one would perhaps be most likely to find it. Cf. France, Jesus and the Old Testament, pp. 164– 165 who takes Strack and Billerbeck’s view. It is important to note here that this lack of pre-Christian Messianic treatment of Ps 110:1 corresponds to the surprising lack of Messianic material from the intertestamental period. J. Neusner, Messiah in Context: Israel’s History and Destiny in Formative Judaism (Philadelphia: Fortress, 1984) makes it clear that the concept of a Messiah is quite alien to the concerns of the Mishnah, whilst William Horbury, ‘Messianism in the Old Testament Apocrypha and Pseudepigrapha,’ in King and Messiah in Israel and the Ancient Near East: Proceedings of the Oxford Old Testament Seminar

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Bauckham does not offer the only recent attempt to incorporate the study of memory into historical Jesus research. A substantial study by Antony Le Donne brings this association to bear on the Son of David tradition and is of particular importance to this chapter.³³⁵ Whilst Le Donne does not seek to answer the question of the historicity of the Davidssohnfrage, he nonetheless makes a significant contribution to this discussion. He argues that the pericope represents a ‘middle stratum between the early memories of Jesus and later Christian invention.’³³⁶According to Le Donne, the passage demonstrates the influence of various levels of memory refraction, including conventionalisation (in this case where the lemma has been deliberately modified to reflect a familiar Old Greek text) and narrativisation (in the Markan version, where the whole pericope has been formed into a chiasm to aid memorisation and thus control the tradition).³³⁷ Le Donne goes on to attempt to situate the Davidssohnfrage upon a ‘trajectory’ of the interpretation of Ps 110 so as to understand the extent to which memories relating to Jesus have been refracted to fit in with such patterns of interpretation. As he notes, this is extremely difficult to do since Ps 110 does not appear to have been of much interest prior to the New Testament.³³⁸ Yet it is

(ed. John Day; JSOTSup 270; Sheffield: Sheffield Academic Press, 1998), pp. 406 – 408 notes that the Old Testament Apocrypha maintains a surprising silence regarding the Messiah when compared with Pseudepigraphal works such as 1 Enoch and Ps. Sol.  Anthony Le Donne, The Historiographical Jesus: Memory, Typology and the Son of David (Texas: Baylor University Press, 2009). This book appears to be of equal importance for both its contribution to the study of the ‘Son of David’ tradition as well as for its methodological contribution. Of particular interest is the author’s discussion of memory refraction in typology in chapter four.  Ibid., p. 228.  Ibid., pp. 228 – 231.  Ibid., pp. 231– 238. Le Donne, however, brilliantly attempts to reconstruct a probable preChristian interpretation of the psalm based on its unpopularity. He notes the alteration of Ps 110:4 in the later Tg. Ps 110:4 which reads, ‫נשבע יהוה ולא ינחם אתה מתמני לרבא לעלמא‬. It is suggested that references to priesthood are eliminated in order that the psalm many be understood as pertaining to a single referent who is simply a king, rather than a king-cum-high priest. Since the reading undermined in Tg. Ps. 110:4 does not reflect common eschatological hopes of the intertestamental period, Le Donne suggests that it was understood in this way prior to the New Testament and thus avoided. In this way, Ps 110:4 was understood in a similar way to the treatment it receives in the Epistle to the Hebrews, where its central character is read as both king and priest. However, this does not seem to offer much to the task of explicating a trajectory of interpretation of Ps 110:1 which will contribute to a discussion of the historicity of the Davidssohnfrage. Le Donne appears to take for granted a 1st Century association of Ps 110:1 and Ps 110:4 as belonging to the same psalm. The synoptic Gospels fail to demonstrate any knowledge of Ps 110:4, which makes Le Donne’s claim (p. 241) that the use of Ps 110 by Jesus is a specific challenge to the Jerusalem Temple because it implies his priesthood, uncertain.

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argued that the traditions of the Davidic promise (cf. 2 Sam 7) and the priestkings Simon and Jonathan (seen to be a possible influence upon Ps 110:4,³³⁹) are crucial for an understanding of the use of Ps 110 in the Davidssohnfrage, as well as in Mark’s passion narrative, so that as Jesus employs this text twice in the temple he is standing within this priest-king tradition. However, it is not clear that Mark knows that there is a relationship between Ps 110:1 which he quotes and Ps 110:4 which he does not quote but which Le Donne assumes he knows. Moreover, there is no indication that Mark understands Jesus in cultic terms.³⁴⁰ The ‘history of interpretation’ offered by Le Donne is perhaps not that helpful for assessing the historicity of Jesus’ use of Ps 110:1. The evidence for a pre-Christian interpretation of Ps 110:1 is simply too insubstantial to justify the claim that the Davidssohnfrage ‘has localised Jesus’ significance with the exegesis of Psalm 110.’³⁴¹ However, Le Donne’s comments on the evidence of conventionalisation and narrativisation are extremely important and ought to be counted as a significant vote against an understanding of the Davidssohnfrage as too precise a record of Jesus’ own teaching. Yet, as Le Donne himself points out, even …if the story does represent early invention, it is of value in that it provides a window to which interpretative categories had been employed to understand Jesus’ significance and how. By locating these categories and analyzing their refractive effect(s), we gain insight into how memory stories of Jesus might have been interpreted at earlier stages of the Jesus tradition.³⁴²

Even if the Synoptic accounts of the Davidssohnfrage are not precisely historical, they nevertheless offer a very early interpretation of Jesus memories. It is impossible to preclude from these memories Jesus’ use of Ps 110:1 and the exegetical argument employing the notion of Davidic authorship. Like Le Donne, James D. G. Dunn also discusses the historicity of the Davidssohnfrage from the perspective of memory studies. Dunn suggests that oral memory makes a great deal of ‘riddles’ such as Jesus’ treatment of Ps 110:1.  A sympathetic critique of this Hasmonaean connection is offered by J. W. Bowker, ‘Psalm CX,’ VT 17:1 (1967), pp. 31– 41 who notes that for the acrostic ‫ שמען אים‬to work, the first clause of the psalm (‫ )נאם יהוה לאדני‬must be omitted. Cf. Bateman, ‘Ps 110:1’, p. 440.  Though Le Donne’s observation that Ps 110:1 is used exclusively by Mark in association with the temple is important. Whilst it may not indicate ‘a claim of sacral authority’ (p. 248) it may exhibit a basic element of memory about Jesus’ teaching: that he quoted Ps 110:1 in the Temple.  Le Donne, Historiographical Jesus, p. 257.  Ibid, pp. 222– 223. This refusal to attempt to draw a sharp Spinozian distinction between history and interpretation is certainly a feature of Le Donne’s approach to social memory and historicity, as it is of the broader ‘critical-realist’ school.

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[The Davidssohnfrage] has more the character of a riddle, the sort of riddle which was once the delight of oral societies. In this case the riddle obviously plays on the presupposition of a patriarchal society that the son was by definition subservient to the father. So how could the anointed king be both David’s son and David’s lord? Perhaps, then, the tradition originated with the memory of Jesus posing the conundrum in a day when the possible messianic significance of Ps. 110.1 was beginning to be discussed. That he was in the event (shortly after this) denounced to Pilate and then crucified as a messianic claimant makes it rather more credible that the issue of messiahship was in the air prior to Jesus’ arrest.³⁴³

Whilst Dunn is often criticised for the historical evasiveness of his critical-realist approach to the historical Jesus, ³⁴⁴ this approach does not seem to compromise the realism of his apparent argument that the Davidssohnfrage really did originate with the teaching of the historical Jesus. It is likely, though, that Dunn does not intend the oral memory of riddles to imply a precise correlation between this pericope and the original words spoken by Jesus, since Dunn is insistent upon the nature of memory as unavoidably affected by the perceived significance of the things remembered.³⁴⁵ In other recent Historical Jesus research, Paul Barnett, writing from the realist (rather than critical-realist) perspective of the older quests for the historical

 James D. G. Dunn, Jesus Remembered (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2003), p. 635. Dunn’s is not the only recent attempt to move from discussing the Davidssohnfrage as a ‘riddle’ to considering its historicity. Wright, Jesus, p. 510 referring to the Davidssohnfrage and other ‘riddles’, ‘the riddles make sense within first-century Judaism, but nobody else said anything quite like this; they are comprehensible as part of the backdrop to early Christianity, but do not make sense (that is, their riddling form becomes unnecessary) after Easter. They belong historically, in other words, where the synoptic evangelists place them: as Jesus’ own cryptic but telling explanations of his Temple-action.’ This is, of course, another argument for the historicity of the Davidssohnfrage based upon its elusive meaning.  Historical Jesus scholars still typically want to ask ‘did this actually happen or not?’ A question which critical-realist approaches are generally unwilling to answer. Cf. Bengt Holmberg, ‘Questions of Method in James Dunn’s Jesus Remembered,’ JSNT 26:4 (2004), p. 430 argues that the Dunn’s insistence that New Testament scholars have only memories about Jesus to reckon with, behind which it is impossible to reach, represents a denial of the true nature of historical Jesus research: ‘I contend that we have not completed our work as historians working on Jesus unless we push forward from the statement that a certain motif, say, the kingdom motif, appears frequently in the Jesus tradition because that was how Jesus was remembered to have spoken, to a judgement about whether he actually spoke like that or not.’ The suggestions Joel Willetts, ‘Presuppositions and Procedures in the Study of the ‘Historical Jesus:’ Or, Why I Decided not to Become a ‘Historical Jesus’ Scholar,’ JSHJ 3:1 (2005), pp. 100 ff. provide a perfect example of the critical-realist problem about which Holmberg complains, though here ‘historical Jesus’ research is unapologetically encouraged to embrace confessional approaches to the history behind the New Testament literature.  Dunn, Jesus Remembered, pp. 107– 111.

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Jesus, whilst rejecting several of their historiographical criteria, suggests that material like the Davidssohnfrage ought to be understood as originating in some form with the historical Jesus.³⁴⁶ Barnett follows the view of Schneider, Neugebauer and Brown in reading the Davidssohnfrage as an element of Synoptic Son of Man Christology and suggests that this Christology belonged to the historical Jesus. He gives three principal reasons for this. Firstly, he notes the allusive character of the pericope, that it cannot be explained ‘in terms of existing categories of thought. Secondly, he notes that the title ‘Son of Man’ is not a widespread feature of early Christian teaching outside the Synoptic Gospels (absent in both Pauline and Petrine Epistles) and so does not reflect the thought of the early church. Finally, he notes that instances of the title ‘Son of Man’ are concentrated in Mark after Caesarea Philippi and do not appear to be a feature of Mark’s own mode of Christological expression.³⁴⁷ Whilst one cannot be certain that the Davidssohnfrage provides a record of the teaching of the historical Jesus, the discussion above has attempted to demonstrate that it is a very real possibility as far as scholarly opinion is concerned. Recent scholarship on the role and nature of memory in the formation of the Jesus traditions of the Gospels has opened a new chapter in historical Jesus research. Now it is much harder simply to dismiss a tradition such as the Davidssohnfrage as not belonging to the historical Jesus, just as it is not so simple to draw clear distinctions between the Jesus of history and the Jesus of faith. Within this context the more traditional argument that the enigmatic nature of the Davidssohnfrage suggests its historicity retains some force. Because it is not possible to explain the hermeneutic of the Davidssohnfrage in terms of comparable exegetical traditions that pre-date Mark, a serious possibility is that its origins are with the historical Jesus.

 Paul Barnett, Finding the Historical Christ (Michigan: Eerdmans, 2009), pp. 222– 224. Barnett’s realist task is to close the conceptual gap between the famous ‘Jesus of history and Christ of Faith’ (Cf. David Friedrich Strauss, The Christ of Faith and the Jesus of History: A Critique of Schleiermacher’s The Life of Jesus [trans. Leander E. Keck; Philadelphia: Fortress, 1977], p. 169) by analysing the essentially historical character of the Gospels. In doing this, he rejects the criteria of ‘dissimilarity’ and of ‘retroversion’ on good grounds, whilst keeping to others, such as ‘inclusion’ and ‘embarrassment’.  Ibid., pp. 130 – 133.

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Conclusion: The Davidssohnfrage and the treatment of Ps 16 in Acts Can the Davidssohnfrage be understood, then, as providing the inspiration for the exegetical reasoning of Acts 2:29 – 36 and 13:36 – 37? Buckwater, in his work on the Christology of Acts, suggests that these comments on Pss 16 and 110 in Acts need to be understood together and that they may have been influenced by the exegetical practice of Jesus himself. Luke possibly reflects in these two episodes the manner in which the early Church taught and defended Jesus’ resurrection from the Old Testament Scriptures to a Jewish audience…and Jesus’ own teaching on the matter (cf. Luke 24:27, 45).³⁴⁸

Whilst it is principally the exegetical function of David as the assumed author of the texts interpreted in these parts of Acts which forms the basis of their similarity with the Davidssohnfrage, there is a much greater degree of similarity regarding Acts 2:34 – 36. Here, there is a significant degree of similarity between the uses of Ps 110:1 in each case. Both employ quotations of the Psalm. Both quotations are essentially the same; they start and end in the same place and provide the only examples of this precise citation in the New Testament.³⁴⁹ Both note that the text’s author was David. Both employ a sense of who David was to define the meaning of the text. Is it possible that they both reflect a common tradition, or, more probably, that Acts 2:34– 36 represents a tradition that begins with the Davidssohnfrage? The use of Ps 110:1 is so widespread in the New Testament that it seems reasonable to posit its existence as an established early Christian testimonium. Albl argues that this must be the case: If…Psalm 110 did not have a clearly messianic meaning in pre-Christian Jewish circles, then the Synoptic accounts presuppose a Christian exegetical activity that established this meaning.³⁵⁰

 Buckwater, Christology, p. 116.  Albeit following Luke’s ‘corrected’ reading of the citation in the Davidssohnfrage: reading ὑποπόδιον instead of ὑποκάτω. This is not a significant difference as may be suggested by the discussion of this variant above. The tradition of reading Ps 110:1 in the light of its assumed authorship, perhaps initiated by Jesus and first expressed in the Davidssohnfrage, is departed from to some extent in Acts by the use of this approach to prove the exaltation of Jesus. One should not expect a perfect copy. Moreover, even if the tradition itself employs a Ps 110:1 lemma with the possible conflation of Ps 8:6, it is unlikely that Luke would have observed this since he clearly chose to change Mark’s ‘conflated’ reading of this verse in the Davidssohnfrage.  Albl, And Scripture cannot be Broken, pp. 227– 228.

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Yet Albl notes that this ‘exegetical activity’, which he insists must be pre-Pauline, is inherently complex. He suggests that the use of Ps 110:1 in the New Testament represents a variety of traditions created by interpreting Ps 110:1 in the light of various other scriptural texts (Dan 7:13, Ps 8:6 and Ps 110:4) as well as theological ideas (‘two powers’ and ‘two advents’).³⁵¹ His analysis of the Davidssohnfrage as reflecting the testimonium featuring Ps 110:1 with Ps 8:6 (following Hengel and Mohoney) is unconvincing for reasons discussed above. It is not clear that another text features significantly in any version of the Davidssohnfrage. Moreover, Albl is unable to define the use of Ps 110:1 in Acts 2:33 – 36 as belonging to any clear testimonia tradition. It seems possible, therefore, to posit another version of the Ps 110:1 testimonium, one that does not feature the use of another text and which incorporates the notion of the Davidic author as an exegetical characteristic. If the Davidssohnfrage can be regarded as reflecting the teaching of the historical Jesus, this pericope must be understood as providing the basis of such a testimonium, since it is impossible to posit such an apparently Christological interpretation of Ps 110:1 prior to the ministry of Jesus of Nazareth. Because the Davidssohnfrage is theologically ambiguous, the testimonium which might have originated from it is probably enhanced or corrupted by the time it is used in Acts 2:33 – 36 and Ep. Barn. 12:10 – 11. ³⁵² Acts 2:33 – 36 dissolves the ambiguity of the testimonium by using its motif of Davidic authorship to posit a clear proof of Jesus’ ascension. Likewise, Ep. Barn. 12:10 – 11 removes its ambiguous element by asserting a theological conclusion: that Ps 110:1 proves Jesus to be the Son of God. As noted above, the ambiguity of the Davidssohnfrage provides a significant reason for seeing it as incorporating the teaching of the historical Jesus. As a well known Jesus tradition, it may have been that its distinctive pattern of author-centred exegesis was reflected in Acts 2:33 – 36 and Ep. Barn. 12:10 – 11 and copied in the Ps 16:8 – 11 testimonium seen behind Acts 2:25 – 36 and Acts 13:33 – 37. It could also have influenced the use of Ps 95:7– 11 and Ps 110:4 in the Epistle to the Hebrews where the notion of a text’s contingency upon a particular historical person or time is also employed. There is a distinctive hermeneutic employed within various elements of the New Testament literature: a tradition of attempting to understand scriptural texts by referring them to their assumed historical origins as the work of a particular

 Ibid., pp. 235 – 236.  Cf. Hahn, Titles in Christology, p. 106 who posits just such a relationship between the Davidssohnfrage and Acts 2:34– 6. ‘Closely related to Mk. 12:35 ff. is Acts 2:34– 36, the only other place in the NT where there is a full quotation of Ps 110:1 [Hahn also claims similarity due to their common use of the title κύριος]. Even though we must admit the independence of Luke in the drafting of his speeches, it can hardly be questioned that here he is assimilating a tradition.’

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person or simply as belonging to a particular period in the characteristic New Testament Heilsgeschichten of Israel. The discussion of the Davidssohnfrage above, suggests that it is quite a credible possibility that the use of this exegetical technique in the New Testament is derived from a traditional account of the biblical exegesis of Jesus himself and most probably the actual teaching of the historical Jesus. So far, it has been argued that the ‘historical’ hermeneutics discussed above represent a distinctively Christian departure from the hermeneutic norms of the literary environment of the New Testament. The novelty of such hermeneutics, it has been argued, is no doubt due to Christian developments in Heilsgeschichte and to the exegetical practice of Jesus himself. However, there is another possible explanation which must be discussed before one can consider how these early ‘historical’ hermeneutics might contribute to contemporary discussions regarding the nature of biblical hermeneutics, as this study will proceed to do. Scholars who seek to understand the exegetical approaches seen in the New Testament tend to resort to certain bodies of literature, principally rabbinic literature, the Dead Sea Scrolls, Philo, Josephus and the Pseudepigrapha.

Chapter 4: The Historical Hermeneutics of the New Testament and the Current Crisis facing the Historical-Critical Method in Theology The previous chapters of this study have argued that certain New Testament texts employ a mode of exegetical reasoning which appears to represent something of an innovation. These texts depart from the dominant reasonings demonstrated in Rabbinic, Qumranic, Pseudepigraphal and Hellenistic Jewish literature which are typically seen to have influenced scriptural hermeneutics in the New Testament. This departure is characterised by a quite different conception of the text itself. The scriptural text, in these particular New Testament passages, is not understood as a closed reality of pure text which must be explained purely in terms of its own internal characteristics; rather it is understood to be essentially contingent upon the historical circumstances from which it originated. This is seen as texts are explained with reference to their assumed authors or the assumed historical period in which they were created. Both of these references to history are employed as exegetical keys unlocking the meaning of the text. This practice of historical reasoning, it is argued, represents a distinctively Christian approach to biblical hermeneutics, both in its relation to the exegetical practice of the historical Jesus, in the case of the Davidssohnfrage, and in its likely dependence upon early Christian accounts of Heilsgeschichte in other cases. This chapter will argue that, because of this, an interest in a text’s historical origins should be a permanent and valued feature of a Christian reader’s approach to the Bible, particularly when it is read as part of the practice of Theology.³⁵³

 The issue of whether contemporary Christians ought to emulate the exegetical practice of the New Testament, though not of widespread interest, has been addressed in some depth. Cf. Motyer, ‘The Psalm Quotations of Hebrews 1’, and the essays by Richard Longnecker and G. K. Beale in The Right Doctrine from the Wrong Texts? Essays on the Use of the Old Testament in the New (ed. G. K. Beale; Grand Rapids: Baker, 1994), pp. 375 – 404. Since much of the exegetical practice of the New Testament is ‘charismatic’, with readings posited without explanation based upon the status of the interpreter, perhaps Jesus or Paul, it would be unwise for Christian readers of the Bible simply to copy this approach. From a confessional perspective, if Jesus’ authority is marked by his charismatic exegesis (as it probably is in Matt 7:28 – 29), the idea of Christian readers in general taking this same approach might risk distorting this essential element of New Testament Christology. New Testament exegetical practice which more closely adheres to rabbinic practice is to a degree already emulated since it is, on a very basic level, related to purely literary approaches to Scripture and contemporary notions of intertextuality. The historical exegetical arguments discussed in the first three chapters (particularly those from

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The historical study of a scriptural text’s origins, usually in the form of the historical-critical method, has been subject to a significant and, in some ways, necessary critique in recent decades. In the discipline of Biblical Studies, the historical-critical method has often been relegated in favour of literary approaches to the Bible in recent years. Yet these approaches are not usually in opposition to the idea of the text’s historical contingency³⁵⁴ and the place of the historical-critical method in this area of biblical study has been robustly defended and is likely to be secure.³⁵⁵ However, historical study of a text’s origins faces a greater challenge in the areas of Doctrinal and Systematic Theology. Attempts to interpret Scripture by employing historical information about the origins of a given text are often seen as hostile to theological meaning. It is argued that historical approaches of this sort owe more to the rationalistic prejudice of the Enlightenment than they do to Christian Theology. It is also argued that such historical interpre-

Hebrews and Acts) all appear to be attempts to make the meaning of a text clear to an audience which does not necessarily accept the authority of the interpreter. In this respect, these arguments represent something closer to a ‘public’ form of reasoning about scriptural interpretation, not simply aimed at a particular sympathetic community. Because this form of exegetical reasoning rejects the necessity for the interpreter to position his or herself in a position of authority over those for whom the text is interpreted, it is perhaps more suitable for emulation by contemporary Christians.  One notable example of a literary approach used to identify an historical author’s intended meaning (which is often the primary aim of historical-critical approaches) is the famous book by Robert Alter, The Art of Biblical Narrative (London: George Allen & Unwin, 1981) particularly pp. 47 where Alter discusses the use and manipulation of type-scenes and other literary conventions by biblical authors. Cf. Lyle Eslinger, ‘The Wooing of the Woman at the Well: Jesus, the Reader and Reader-Response Criticism,’ JLT 1:2 (1987), pp. 167– 183 which applies Alter’s argument to a specific text and attempts to articulate the effect the author intended the text to have on his first readers. This approach to John 4 has recently been challenged by Andrew E. Arterbury, ‘Breaking the Betrothal Bonds: Hospitality in John 4,’ CBQ 72:1 (2010), pp. 63 – 83 who interestingly also suggests that this passage must be understood in terms of literary convention, in his case conventions regarding literary scenes of hospitality. John Barton, ‘Reading the Bible as Literature: Two Questions for Biblical Scholars,’ JLT 1:2 (1987), pp. 135 – 153 argues for the inclusion of literary criticism within historical criticism due to the fact that much biblical literature does not conform to Romantic notions of literature as authorial expression, since the author has often absented himself from the biblical text. A similar argument is found in F. W. Dobbs-Allsopp, ‘Rethinking Historical Criticism,’ BibInt 8 (1999), pp. 235 – 271.  Two notable examples are John Barton, The Nature of Biblical Criticism (Louisville/London: WJK, 2008) and Joseph A. Fitzmyer, The Interpretation of Scripture: In Defense of the HistoricalCritical Method (New York: Paulist Press, 2008). See also, John Barton, The Future of Old Testament Study: An Inaugural Lecture delivered before the University of Oxford on 12 November 1992 (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1993), p. 8 which affirms historical criticism as a scholarly enterprise for the university.

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tation limits the potential for texts to be read theologically due to its association with assumptions of textual determinacy. Because of such criticisms, historical research into a scriptural text’s origins does not feature in much contemporary use of Scripture in Systematic Theology. This is particularly the case in the Theological Interpretation of Scripture school.³⁵⁶ This chapter will argue that, having examined historical exegetical arguments in the New Testament, the idea of Scripture’s contingency upon history is properly Christian as are hermeneutics which enlist this contingency. Moreover, as is the case in the New Testament texts examined in the first three chapters, historical reasoning based on assumptions of contingency does not preclude theological readings. In addition to this, it will be argued that a hermeneutic of this sort has much to offer contemporary theological interpretation. Firstly, the New Testament versions of this approach often depend significantly on historical narratives in which the reader sympathises with the author of the past. To see hermeneutics as an extension of a theological narrative of history resonates significantly with post-modern and ‘post-liberal’ accounts of culture and theological reasoning. Secondly, historical study of a text’s origins as a feature of biblical hermeneutics helps to preserve a biblical text’s alterity: it helps to prevent the text from being too easily absorbed into the readers’ theological presuppositions, a significant weakness in the Theological Interpretation of Scripture.

 The reference to this ‘movement’ as a ‘school’ is not in any way intended to imply its uniformity. Daniel J. Treier, Introducing Theological Interpretation of Scripture: Recovering a Christian Practice (Leicester: Apollos, 2008) describes the development of this movement in Christian theology from the 1990 s to his time of writing. He notes three particular characteristics of Theological Interpretation of Scripture; an interest in reception history (particularly ‘precritical’ readings), a view of the importance of reading Scripture under the controls of Christian doctrine (i. e. a ‘rule of faith’) and an emphasis on the communal aspects of reading Scripture, particularly in terms of ensuring that exegesis engages with the needs and values of the interpretative community. Cf. idem., ‘What is Theological Interpretation? An Ecclesiastical Reduction,’ IJST 12:2 (2010), pp. 144– 161. Treier argues here that there are two broad ‘schools’ of Theological Interpretation of Scripture based on differing ‘biblical’ and ‘dogmatic and hermeneutical strategies’ (p. 146). Treier goes on to describe the origins of this diverse movement, particularly in the relation of its representative scholars to Barth, and argues that their diversity is ecclesiologically conditioned.

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4.1 The challenge to historical hermeneutics As noted above, the challenge to historical hermeneutics is usually related specifically to the historical-critical method which does not correspond precisely to the type of historical reasoning seen in the New Testament, though the assumption of a text’s contingency upon its original historical setting is common to both. However, the criticisms make no distinction between the historical-critical method and any other type of historical exegetical reasoning or method. When systematic theologians and theological interpreters of Scripture (those committed to reading Scripture to address contemporary theological concerns) reject the historical-critical method they reject all similar forms of reasoning and do not replace them with another approach to historical study of a text’s origins. This is clear from the lack of reference to the historical situations through which texts developed into what is now regarded as Scripture. Whilst the challenges to historical criticism reflect a very broad variety of concerns, this chapter is primarily interested in more recent challenges and so will not offer significant discussion of challenges posed by the introduction of literary approaches to the Bible from the mid-twentieth century onwards or from specific reader-oriented approaches, such as feminist criticism, though these have undoubtedly influenced more recent critiques of historical criticism. The recent challenges addressed in this chapter may be grouped into broad concerns. Firstly, historical criticism has been rejected by some scholars on the basis of its view of history, stemming from the philosophical movements of the Enlightenment and Romanticism which dominated the development of this approach to biblical scholarship. Secondly, historical criticism has been rejected by other scholars on the basis of its assumptions about the nature of texts and how, if at all, meaning may be derived from them. Representatives of both broad areas of concern are united by perceptions of a need to provide a more ‘theological’ hermeneutic for biblical study, both in the academy and the Church.

4.1.1 The nature and origins of historical criticism The historical-critical method has been rejected by some scholars as essentially a product of the Enlightenment which hides its prejudice against theology behind a mask of scholarly neutrality. This criticism has been made by a variety of scholars, perhaps most notable amongst whom is John Milbank.³⁵⁷ Milbank’s critique,

 For a study of Milbank’s treatment of historical criticism, see Sargent, ‘John Milbank and

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which is aimed more generally at all social-theory informed theological methods, takes the form of an historical narrative.³⁵⁸ He contends that Duns Scotus and other nominalist theologians, in discussing the universals, created a radical disjuncture between the phenomenal world of cause and effect and the abstract noumenal reality of the divine.³⁵⁹ As a result of this disjuncture, theologians and philosophers began to depart from Thomist notions of divine immanence and participation in the created world and instead conceived of the world as a closed system which could be understood without reference to transcendent universals. Milbank argues that this is seen most clearly in the work of Benedict de Spinoza who used it to suggest a radical historical approach to interpreting Scripture.³⁶⁰

Biblical Hermeneutics,’ which discusses Milbank’s arguments against the historical-critical method in some depth and argues that this rejection, coupled with Milbank’s interest in Gadamer, might help to explain why so many of his readings of theologians (and indeed the Bible) lack historical accuracy (a criticism often made of Milbank). It is worth noting that Milbank does not belong to the group of scholars who exemplify the interests of Theological Interpretation of Scripture, nor is he primarily an exegete (though his recent work on Genesis displays many areas of similarity to Theological Interpretation of Scripture). Yet Milbank is an important figure establishing the ‘post-liberal’ turn in theology of which Theological Interpretation of Scripture is arguably an expression. Treier, ‘What is Theological Interpretation,’ p. 156 makes this association of post-liberalism and Theological Interpretation of Scripture.  It is worth noting that Milbank’s history of philosophy is contested at almost every point where he seeks to explicate it from particular philosophers and theologians. Cf. Nicholas Lash, ‘Not Exactly Politics or Power?’, MT 8:4 (1992), p. 356; Richard Cross, ‘Where angels fear to tread: Duns Scotus and Radical Orthodoxy’, Antonianum 76:1 (2001), p. 31; John Bowlin, ‘Parts, Wholes and Opposites: John Milbank as Geisteshistoriker’, JRE 32:2 (2004), p. 265; Gordon E. Michalson, ‘Re-reading the Post-Kantian Tradition with Milbank’, JRE 32:2 (2004), p. 378; Paul Janz, ‘Radical Orthodoxy and the New Culture of Obscurantism’, MT 20:3 (2004), p. 397 and a large number of essays challenging Milbank’s readings of Aquinas, Scotus, Suárez and modern secularity in Deconstructing Radical Orthodoxy (ed. Wayne J. Hankey and Douglas Hedley; Aldershot: Ashgate, 2005).  John Milbank, ‘Knowledge: The theological critique of philosophy in Hamann and Jacobi,’ in Radical Orthodoxy: A New Theology (ed. John Milbank, Catherine Pickstock and Graham Ward; London: Routledge, 1999), p. 23 ‘Duns Scotus…established a radical separation of philosophy from theology by declaring that it was possible to consider being in abstraction from the question of whether one is considering created or uncreated being.’  Whilst the historical accuracy of Milbank’s readings are often questioned, the claim that the historical-critical method originated in some form during the early enlightenment is well attested. Cf. John Barton, ‘Historical Critical Approaches,’ in The Cambridge Companion to Biblical Interpretation (ed. John Barton; Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1998), p. 11. Cf. also Jeffrey L. Morrow, ‘The Bible in Captivity: Hobbes, Spinoza, and the Politics of Defining Religion,’ ProEcc 29:3 (2010), pp. 291– 299.

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As Spinoza describes it, this method is universally available and accords hermeneutic priority to the most general, most accessible, most clear and most (supposedly) ‘rational’ meanings of Scripture. Although each free individual confronts the Biblical text without traditional mediation, this confrontation paradoxically irons out all idiosyncrasy, because the Bible, like nature, is a self-interpreting totality, a world articulated by its own widest and most unambiguous meanings, as is nature by the most general motions.³⁶¹

According to Milbank, Spinoza understood Scripture to be essentially contingent upon the world of cause and effect, by analogy with which it needed no transcendent intuition or rules to explain. Scripture could be interpreted and understood in terms of its causal relationships, using a principle of analogy to place biblical revelation within the same contingent world inhabited by the reader. According to Milbank, this principle of analogy is inherently hostile to theological reading of Scripture since it encourages the reader to see Scripture as belonging to a world much like his or her own, a world in which God is not perceived to be immanently participating in each creative act of writing.³⁶² Milbank notes that

 John Milbank, Theology and Social Theory: Beyond Secular Reason, 2nd Ed. (Oxford: Blackwell, 2006), p. 20. Milbank appears here to have essentially interpreted Spinoza correctly. Cf. Benedict de Spinoza, Theological-Political Treatise (trans. Michael Silverthorne and Jonathan Israel; ed. Jonathan Israel; Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2007), p. 98 (7:2). ‘I hold that the method of interpreting Scripture…does not differ from the (correct) method of interpreting nature, but is rather wholly consonant with it. The (correct) method of interpreting nature consists above all in constructing a natural history, from which we derive the definitions of natural things, as from certain data. Likewise, to interpret Scripture, we need to assemble a genuine history of it and to deduce the thinking of the Bible’s authors by valid inferences from this history, as from certain data and principles.’ The idea of biblical scholarship as an ‘historical science’ receives a notable exposition at the time the historical-critical method was gaining popularity in English scholarship in Percy Gardner, A Historic View of the New Testament: The Jowett Lectures Delivered at the Passmore Edwards Settlement in London, 1901 (London: A. & C. Black, 1904), pp. 1– 34. ‘There is a general consensus among conservative theologians that when Christian history and doctrine are concerned the ordinary canons of evidence lose their applicability, – that the eyes must be accustomed to a non-natural light, and look at the literature and history of the early Church as if it were something that stood quite by itself, and out of relation to all else going on the in the world’ (p. 1). Gardner also links ‘historical science’ to an evolutionary understanding of history (p. 12 f.).  Cf. John Milbank, The Word Made Strange: Theology, Language, Culture (Oxford: Blackwell, 1997), pp. 126 – 128 and John Milbank, The Suspended Middle: Henri de Lubac and the Debate Concerning the Supernatural (London: SCM, 2005), p. 10 for some discussion on the relationship between participation and language. A similar argument is made by Joseph Ratzinger, ‘Biblical Interpretation in Conflict: On the Foundations and the Itinerary of Exegesis Today,’ in Opening up the Scriptures: Joseph Ratzinger and the Foundations of Biblical Interpretation (ed. José Granados, Carlos Granados and Luis Sánchez-Navarro; Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2008), p. 18 ‘The real philosophical presupposition behind the whole enterprise seems to me to lie in the Kantian

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this development permitted readers of the Bible to ‘explain’ the Bible in purely sociological terms, ³⁶³ ignoring the theological potency of the text.³⁶⁴ Hence, Spi-

turn. According to Kant, man cannot perceive the voice of being in itself; he can hear it only indirectly, in the postulates of practical reason…For the rest, for what the activity of his reason can substantively grasp, man can only go so far as the category allows. He is therefore limited to the positive, to the empirical, to “exact” science, in which by definition something or someone Wholly Other…has no room to occur.’ Cf. Wambacq, ‘Instructio de Historica Evangeliorum Veritate,’ p. 306. Hans-Georg Gadamer, Truth and Method (trans. Joel Weinsheimer and Donald G. Marshall; London: Continuum, 2004), pp. 175 ff. goes back further in his analysis of the hermeneutical revolution of the enlightenment and its development in romantic thought, arguing that ‘insofar as scriptural hermeneutics is regarded as the prehistory of the hermeneutics of the modern human sciences, it is based on the scriptural principle of the Reformation: Luther’s position is more or less the following: Scripture is sui ipsius interpres.’ This certainly accounts for Spinoza’s rejection of traditional, theological reading but there needs to be a distinction between the Reformation idea of Scripture as a closed, self-interpreting reality, analogous to the natural world, and Spinoza’s notion of Scripture as part of the natural world, as contingent upon it.  Milbank, Theology and Social Theory, p. 112 ‘Sociology employing functional explanation is supposed to transcend historiographical narration of deeds, purposes and uses; as the New Testament critic John Gager puts it, “history describes, sociology explains”. This claim can only mean that sociology gives us atemporal knowledge of a finite range of social possibilities, such that, given an example of a particular kind of society, one can predict the sorts of function it will require.’ Milbank extends his critique of the ‘functionalist’ sociological nature of social theory informed biblical scholarship by examining the specific examples of Norman Gottwald and Wayne Meeks. Whilst Gottwald does not claim to employ the historical-critical method, he makes it clear that ‘Social Science Methods’ have a prehistory in historical criticism. Norman K. Gottwald, The Hebrew Bible: A Socio-Literary Introduction (Philadelphia: Fortress, 1985), p. 26. Both approaches depend upon the same assumption that biblical texts are contingent upon an historical context. Stephen E. Fowl, Engaging Scripture: A Model for Theological Interpretation (Eugene, Oregon: Wipf and Stock, 1998), p. 15 makes the same criticism offered by Milbank of Wrede’s idea of New Testament Theology. ‘Wrede’s proposals amounted to a call for a historical report on the “religion” of the first Christians. This meant that the scope of the inquiry could not be confined to the New Testament. Further, his romantic distinction between “religion” and “theology,” and his demand that New Testament theology be strictly historical, effectively excluded all constructive theological work from the discipline.’ Fowl suggests that Wrede’s view exercised a dominant influence over the emergence of the separate theological sub-disciplines which now exist in most university theology departments, disciplines whose separation would be unthinkable in pre-modern scholarship (pp. 15 – 16).  There seems to be a significant irony here. On one hand, the historical criticism which eventually emerges from Spinoza’s contribution to biblical hermeneutics encourages the contemporary reader to identify with the text and its historical character by understanding it to have originated in reality like his or her own. On the other hand, it fosters a distanciation which renders the text completely alien to the reader, separated across an unbridgeable gulf of time. Cf. Paul Ricoeur, ‘The Hermeneutical Function of Distanciation,’ in From Text to Action: Essays in

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noza provided for a rejection of the traditional and authoritative theological readings of Scripture offered by the Catholic Church.³⁶⁵ Yet Milbank suggests that there was also a political aspect to this rejection. The trouble with Christianity, according to Spinoza, is that it is founded on a private and ‘subtle’ reading of the Scriptures whose characteristic is a false admixture of theology with philosophy, which takes time to prepare. Spinoza wishes to contrast a ‘total’ freedom of opinion with an absolute unfreedom of public action, yet this distinction breaks down, because the traditional Catholic reading is always potentially seditious, always involves an interpretive writing which is an act of denial that all and every decree of the sovereign must be seen to be obeyed.³⁶⁶

Milbank suggests that by making biblical hermeneutics analogous to scientific study of the natural world, Spinoza was undermining the exclusive claims of Catholicism regarding the ability of the clergy to interpret Scripture. This would have had significant political implications as Spinoza was enabling the state to dispute the finality of the Church’s reading and its unique ability to mediate the word of God to the people.³⁶⁷ Milbank’s criticism of the historical-critical

Hermeneutics, II (ed. Kathleen Blamey and John B. Thompson; New York: Continuum, 2008), p. 72.  This is indeed a recurring theme in the rhetoric of post-enlightenment biblical criticism. For example, Gardner, Jowett Lectures, pp. 2– 3 writes, ‘[Matthew Arnold] has shown the path which we must follow if we would win back our Bible, if we would remove the mists of convention and unreality which hide from us the pure forms of the living Church, and the essential character of undying religion.’ Cf. Robert W. Jenson, ‘Hermeneutics and the Life of the Church,’ in Reclaiming the Bible for the Church (ed. Carl E. Braaten and Robert W. Jenson; Edinburgh: T. & T. Clark, 1995), p. 104. ‘Historical-critical reading of Scripture has been an affliction for the faith because people have left the church out of their self-understanding as they have practised it. Some of the pioneers of historical reading did this because they hated the church.’  Ibid., See also Milbank, Word Made Strange, p. 95. Francis Watson, ‘Liberating the Reader: A Theological-Exegetical Study of the Parable of the Sheep and the Goats (Matt. 25.31– 46),’ in The Open Text: New Directions for Biblical Studies? (ed. Francis Watson; London: SCM, 1993), pp. 59 – 60 notes the ‘private’ and ‘pietistic’ assumptions of historical criticism in contrast to the public and political readings of Liberation Theology.  This is indeed a particular Spinozan emphasis. Cf. Spinoza, Theological-Political Treatise, pp. 238 ff. (XIX 1) ‘When I said above that only those who hold sovereign power have jurisdiction over everything, and that all authority depends on their decree alone, I had in mind not just civil jurisdiction but also that over sacred matters. For they must be both the interpreters and guardians of things sacred….Very many people vigorously deny that this right…belongs to the sovereign authorities, and refuse to recognise them as interpreters of divine law…We shall see below in this present chapter that what they [who uphold the Church’s exclusive right to interpret Scripture] are in effect doing is dividing sovereign power and attempting to devise a path to power for themselves.’ Ratzinger, ‘Biblical Interpretation in Conflict,’ p. 3 notes this as a

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method is that it is essentially alien to Christian theology.³⁶⁸ It was founded upon a heretical theology of divine absence from the world and seeks to deprive the Church of the ability to read Scripture theologically by recognising only those readings which explain the text in functionalist terms. Far from furnishing the Church with its promised neutral and ‘scientific’ readings of Scripture, historical criticism is deeply prejudiced, employing a false notion of the world of both text and reader.³⁶⁹ The nature and philosophical background of the historical-critical method is also questioned by Craig G. Bartholomew in the first essay of the Scripture and Hermeneutics Series.³⁷⁰ Bartholomew examines the ‘crisis’ in contemporary bib-

general tendency in post-enlightenment biblical criticism to view criticism and authority as mutually exclusive. Walter Sundberg, ‘The Social Effect of Biblical Criticism,’ in Renewing Biblical Interpretation (ed. Craig G. Bartholomew, Colin Greene and Karl Möller; Grand Rapids/ Carlisle: Zondervan/ Paternoster, 2000), pp. 70 – 72 rather interestingly describes a contemporary realisation of Spinoza’s desired subordination of biblical interpretation to the state, where the need to ensure professional survival in the secular university has, in a sense, defined the field of biblical studies.  Cf. Angus Paddison, Scripture: A Very Theological Proposal (London: T. & T. Clark International, 2009), p. 2 ‘To presume that the Bible is intelligible “apart from specific theological convictions and practices’ is to fall prey to what Richard Topping aptly calls an “optical illusion”. We do not by nature always see what Scripture is.’  Forms of this criticism have now been widely accepted, yet Fitzmyer, The Interpretation of Scripture, p. 69 still vigorously insists upon the historical-critical method’s scholarly neutrality, at least in principle.  Craig G. Bartholomew, ‘Uncharted Waters: Philosophy, Theology and the Crisis in Biblical Interpretation,’ in Renewing Biblical Interpretation (ed. Craig G. Bartholomew, Colin Greene and Karl Möller; Grand Rapids/Carlisle: Zondervan/ Paternoster, 2000), pp. 1– 34. Brevard S. Childs, Introduction to the Old Testament as Scripture (London: SCM, 1979), pp. 39 – 40 also raises the issue of historical-criticism’s commitment to a progressive Hegelian vision of history which permits the supposed superannuation of theological reading by ‘scientific’ reading. Likewise, Christopher Rowland, ‘An Open Letter to Francis Watson on Text, Church and World,’ SJT 48:4 (1995), p. 511. Rowland also suggests (p. 509) that historical criticism’s search for objective history behind the text is not dissimilar to an allegorical approach which seeks a different hidden meaning beyond the text. Cf. Walter Brueggemann, ‘A First Retrospect on the Consultation,’ in Renewing Biblical Interpretation (ed. Craig G. Bartholomew, Colin Greene and Karl Möller; Grand Rapids/Carlisle: Zondervan/ Paternoster, 2000), p. 345 who argues that scholars employing historical criticism read ‘through [their] wound[s]’, just as feminist, liberation and post-colonial scholars do. Marcus Bockmuehl, ‘Reason, Wisdom and the Implied Disciple of Scripture,’ in Reading Texts, Seeking Wisdom (ed. David E. Ford and Graham Stanton; London: SCM, 2003), pp. 55 – 56 offers a theological critique of the dominant view of ‘reason’ in historical criticism, comparing it to the biblical notion of διαλογισμός. Alvin Plantinga, ‘Two (or More) Kinds of Scripture Scholarship,’ MT 14:2 (1998), p. 250 also characterizes historical criticism as an Enlightenment project, containing a prejudice against the theological interpretation of the

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lical scholarship, suggesting that it has come about due to the neglect of philosophy in methodological discussion. Because of this neglect, biblical scholars have been largely unaware of the philosophical and theological background of the methodologies they employ. This has resulted in the use of methodologies which reflect the philosophies of the Enlightenment and Romanticism, rather than those of the present day, and this is the basis of the present ‘crisis’ in biblical studies methodology. Like Milbank, Bartholomew seeks to base his argument upon actual scholars who are generally accepted as employing an historical-critical approach. Bartholomew looks to two of the earliest exponents of historical criticism. He argues, firstly, that the scholarship of Wilhelm M. L. de Wette was heavily dependent upon Kant, Schelling and, later on, Fries.³⁷¹ From Kant, de Wette learnt to separate ‘reason’ (as the medium through which revelation may take place) from contingent history (which cannot be revelatory). A reading of Schelling enabled de Wette to apply this essential distinction in the form of a biblical hermeneutic which approached Scripture primarily as myth: as the artistic development of simple intuitions of the absolute perceived in the natural world. The work of Fries eventually led de Wette to follow him by distinguishing between Vernunft (reason) and Verstand (understanding) and characterising biblical literature as exemplifying Vernunft as simple ethical and Church. B. H. McLean, ‘The Crisis of Historicism: And the Problem of Historical Meaning in New Testament Studies,’ HeyJ 53:2 (2012), p. 221 offers a more probing analysis of the metaphysics of historicism. ‘The main features of this metaphysics can be summarized as follows: First, ‘time’ is understood scientifically, and unidimensionally, as a series of ‘static nows.’ The time of everyday experience is objectified into an orderly sequence of quantifiable, uniform days, weeks and years, and divided into a past, present and future, all of which are thought to exist independently of the human existence or perception.’ Cf. p. 227 ‘Whatever the ‘reality’ of early Christian history (Geschichte) may have been, it is no longer objectively existent, waiting to be discovered, or ‘excavated,’ by scholars. No unconstructed, uninterpreted past is available to the historian.’ McLean’s contention is that the metaphysics of historicism are untenable given the acceptance of the situatedness of human knowledge following Heidegger and more recent continental philosophy. It is worth noting, however, that others who call for a more theological hermeneutic by no means reject approaches to reading simply because they are not theological. See, for example, Francis Watson, ‘Hermeneutics and the Doctrine of Scripture: Why They Need Each Other,’ IJST 12:2 (2010), pp. 118 – 143 who argues that the philosophical discipline of hermeneutics ought to be considered alongside the doctrine of Scripture. Likewise, many of the challenges to historical criticism detailed in the second group below originate with insights from general hermeneutics.  Ibid., pp. 8 – 10. Cf. Mary E. Healy, ‘Behind, in Front of…or Through the Text? The Christological Analogy and the Lost World of Biblical Truth,’ in “Behind” the Text: History and Biblical Interpretation (ed. Craig Bartholomew, C. Stephen Evans, Mary Healy and Murray Rae; Carlisle/Michigan: Paternoster/Zondervan, 2003), pp. 182– 184, also noting the influence of Kant upon historical criticism.

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aesthetic insight, insight which finds its fullest expression in Jesus of Nazareth. Far from condemning de Wette for his dependence upon (what was for de Wette) the best of contemporary philosophy, Bartholomew contrasts the depth of de Wette’s hermeneutical reflection on the nature of both text and scholarship with the tendency of 20th and early 21st Century scholars who give no thought at all to the philosophical basis of biblical scholarship.³⁷² He notes that this is in part due to the current academic specialisation which makes it nearly impossible for serious scholars to engage in more than one discipline at once, a problem which de Wette did not face. Biblical scholars today, so Bartholomew suggests, are unlikely to have broader interests in philosophy and hermeneutics due to the specialised demands of their particular subject area. Bartholomew claims that after de Wette, biblical scholars began to employ similar methods without considering their philosophical presuppositions, even to the point of accepting historical criticism as lacking any such presuppositions.³⁷³ He suggests that the work of Julius von Wellhausen marks the point of this transition. Whilst Wellhausen was well acquainted with Hegel, Bartholomew shows that this familiarity did not play a decisive part in the formulation of his methodological principles. Instead, Wellhausen appears to have considered philosophical reflection to follow rather than precede ‘scientific’ philological and historical analysis of a biblical text. [de Wette and Vatke’s] extensive treatments of the nature of religion indicate a strong awareness of the influence of philosophical questions upon the process of discovery in their work. Wellhausen has a different view of the relationship between the process of discovery and philosophy. It is a view in which discovery is relatively uncontaminated by philosophy – Old Testament research uncovers the facts, and systematic philosophy can follow the facts but should not precede them.³⁷⁴

Bartholomew exposes the development of a philosophically ignorant biblical scholarship and calls Christian theologians to consider the philosophical nature of hermeneutics prior to biblical study. The philosophical assumptions upon which historical criticism (the only historical approach used in biblical studies) depends, from which its methodological principles are derived, are charged with being fundamentally alien to the assumptions of Christian theology and, indeed, the assumptions of most readers

 Ibid., p. 11.  Ibid., p. 14.  Ibid., pp. 17– 19. However, Bartholomew is keen not to be understood as claiming Wellhausen as a pure empiricist or positivist.

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who reject Romanticism.³⁷⁵ Not only is historical criticism limited to explaining biblical texts without reference to a theological account of reality, it is also unable to contribute to the questions which Christian theology asks.³⁷⁶ If historical scholarship (as something distinct from historical criticism) is to remain a feature of biblical hermeneutics and perhaps contribute to the articulation of Christian theology, it must be reconceived as being derived from a theological approach to reality. As it is, historical study of a biblical text’s origins scarcely features within Theological Interpretation of Scripture, most probably as a consequence of the perceived prejudice of historical criticism against theology.

4.1.2 Determinacy, the intentionalist fallacy and the historical-critical method Whilst many detractors of historical criticism focus upon its philosophy of history, others concentrate upon its assumptions about textuality. For example, the historical-critical method has been rejected by some scholars interested in reading Scripture theologically on account of its commitment to determinate meaning.³⁷⁷ This commitment can be seen in much of historical criticism.³⁷⁸ Stephen E. Fowl, one of the principal scholars involved in the Theological Interpretation of Scripture school, argues that the method operates with an exclusive and

 Schubert M. Ogden, ‘Theology and Biblical Interpretation,’ JR 76:1 (1996), pp. 172– 188 argues that this is not necessarily the case and that both may be understood as critical reflection upon Christian witness.  Joel B. Green, ‘Afterword,’ in Reading Luke: Interpretation, Reflection, Formation (ed. Craig G. Bartholomew, Joel B. Green and Anthony C. Thiselton; Carlisle/Michigan: Paternoster/Zondervan, 2005), p. 443 ‘Historical study alone cannot speak to such questions as whether Jesus of Nazareth is both Lord and Christ, whether Jesus’ resurrection signalled the restoration of God’s people and the ushering in of a new era, or any number of claims that are central to the witness of Luke’s work.’  This criticism is widespread. Besides those scholars treated in this chapter, see also David C. Steinmetz, ‘The Superiority of Pre-Critical Exegesis,’ in The Theological Interpretation of Scripture: Classic and Contemporary Readings (ed. Stephen E. Fowl; Oxford: Blackwell, 1997), pp. 26 – 38.  This is a tendency noted in Steve Moyise, ‘Intertextuality, Historical Criticism and Deconstruction, in The Intertextuality of the Epistles: Explorations of Theory and Practice (ed. T.L. Brodie, D.R.MacDonald and S.E.Porter; Sheffield: Sheffield Phoenix Press, 2006), pp. 24. Cf. Barton, Biblical Interpretation, p. 161 who lays claim to determinacy as an element of the biblical criticism he seeks to defend and promote.

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very limited definition of meaning which makes it philosophically and theologically problematic.³⁷⁹ Determinate biblical interpretation seeks to secure stability and coherence for Christian faith, worship, and practice, by ascribing a particular, stable and coherent property to the Bible (i. e. meaning). Following the proper interpretive procedures for extracting meaning will be a necessary first step. This view, however, is theoretically mistaken in thinking of meanings as properties of texts, and theologically mistaken in locating the bases of coherent and faithful Christian faith and practice in the text of the Bible interpreted in isolation from Christian doctrines and ecclesial practices.³⁸⁰

According to Fowl, determinate interpretation as seen in the historical-critical method, aims to reduce ‘doctrinal and practical anarchy’ by establishing meaning as a property of the biblical text, a property which can be correctly understood by applying the appropriate methods to the text.³⁸¹ Because of this, the text is perceived as a puzzle to be solved, a problem to be ‘mastered’. Fowl suggests that the philosophical problem with this approach is that there can be no objective grounds (so often prized by historical-critical scholars) for identifying one theory of meaning as exclusively valid.³⁸² Why should one believe that

 Whilst Fowl does not state specifically that he is discussing the historical-critical method in his critique of determinacy, he no doubt alludes to it as his primary example. Cf. Fowl, Engaging Scripture, p. 34 where Fowl’s examples of determinate reading are all historical-critical scholars, p. 35, where the issue of authorial intention is taken as an example of a determinative principle that scholars might aggressively defend and p. 36 which refers to determinacy undermining traditional Christian readings of Scripture as ‘failed attempts to display the meaning of the text.’  Fowl, Engaging Scripture, p. 40.  Ibid., pp. 33 – 34. This does not seem to have been the aim of Spinoza, however, whom one might regard as seeking to create anarchy by undermining the established reading practices of the Church and by granting lay readers of Scripture some interpretative freedom. Cf. TheologicalPolitical Treatise, p. 251 (20:4). Though there is perhaps a tension between the close of this work, affirming humankind’s natural right to free thought and expression, and the expectation that a ‘reasonable’ approach to Scripture will create significant agreement (p. 98, 7:1). Interestingly, the rejection of meaning as an inherent property of the text is not a consistent feature of recent hermeneutical reflection which often attributes a form of active agency to the text. Cf. Werner G. Jeanrond, ‘After Hermeneutics: The Relationship between Theology and Biblical Studies,’ in The Open Text: New Directions for Biblical Studies? (ed. Francis Watson; London: SCM, 1993), p. 94 and Gadamer, Truth and Method, pp. 91– 92.  Fowl, Engaging Scripture, pp. 34– 35. This quest for universally applicable methodological objectivity (which is characteristic of modernity) is also a significant feature of Milbank’s critique of social theory informed theological method. Milbank, Theology and Social Theory, p. 9. Cf. James K. A. Smith, Introducing Radical Orthodoxy: Mapping a Post-Secular Theology (Grand Rapids: Baker, 2004), p. 143 who provides a succinct summary of Milbank’s position: ‘Behind the Politics of Modernity (liberal, secular) is an epistemology (autonomous reason), which is in turn

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meaning resides in some quality which an historical author inserts into the text; a quality which endures through time? How is this any more persuasive than any other account of meaning? Hence, according to Fowl, there can never be any agreement on what constitutes textual meaning. Since such determinative reading lacks the universally recognised philosophical basis it depends upon, it can only defend itself from alternative approaches by aggressive means.³⁸³ Fowl also argues that the determinate interpretation featured in the historical-critical method is theologically problematic. Fowl’s approach to reading Scripture theologically features the theological and existential needs of contemporary Christian (and Jewish) communities as the basis for theological hermeneutics. The historical-critical method is problematic for Christian communities attempting to form their identity through their Scriptures since its determinacy demands that ‘pre-critical’ Christian interpretations which cannot be substantiated by historical criticism be rejected.³⁸⁴ This is particularly problematic for the Christian reader’s use of the Old Testament, which it renders alien to him or her when it is understood purely as the Hebrew Bible, the Scriptures of Israel, and certainly cannot be read Christologically. Fowl’s contention here is that so much of what the Christian Church regards as Scripture is made theologically useless by the historical-critical method which uses history to alienate the scriptural text from its contemporary reader. The determinacy of the method also serves to create a distinction in readership. Correct analysis of the meaning of a text becomes a professional scholarly activity whilst other readings are disregarded.

undergirded by an ontology (univocity and the denial of participation)’, Steven Shakespeare, Radical Orthodoxy: A Critical Introduction (London: SPCK, 2007), p. 10 and Benjamin Sargent, ‘Proceeding Beyond Isolation: Bringing Milbank, Habermas and Ockham to the Interfaith Table,’ HeyJ 51:5 (2010), pp. 819 – 830. Of course, this criticism of Enlightenment and Romantic hermeneutics receives its most significant exposition in Gadamer, Truth and Method, which features a Heideggerian account of hermeneutical truth as existential understanding.  Fowl, Engaging Scripture, p. 36. The example Fowl uses here appears to refer to the challenge posed to historical criticism by the emergence of literary methods and the ensuing response.  Ibid., pp. 36 – 37. Fowl’s criticism of the determinacy of historical criticism is illustrated by his discussion of Brevard Childs’s Biblical Theology. Fowl attacks Childs (ibid., pp. 25 – 27) for suggesting that the text has a single, concrete ‘voice’ or meaning which may be accessed through historical-critical study. Fowl contends that Childs’s interest in the ‘voice’ aims to get rid of ‘uncontrolled allegory’, which Fowl suggests is virtually non-existent, since allegory is typically tightly controlled by a regula fidei. Moreover, Fowl suggests that the defence of the text’s ‘voice’ also aims to justify the existence of historical-critical scholarship.

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Fowl also suggests that the determinacy of the historical-critical method is theologically problematic because the primacy of a determinate ‘literal’ or historical/authorial sense of Scripture is unattested within Christian Theology.³⁸⁵ Here Fowl responds to a potential defence of historical-critical determinacy which might align the method to the controlling influence of the literal sense of Scripture in medieval theology, perhaps with particular reference to Thomas Aquinas. Drawing heavily upon an article by E. F. Rogers,³⁸⁶ Fowl argues that, Rather than eliminating interpretation, a thomistic account of the literal sense fosters ongoing interpretation within the community of believers. Disputes about the literal sense can only be hashed out by means of ad hoc argumentation by interpreters guided by the virtue

 Cf. Hans W. Frei, ‘The “Literal Reading” of Biblical Narrative in the Christian Tradition: Does it Stretch or Will it Break?’ in The Bible and the Narrative Tradition (ed. Frank McConnell; Oxford: OUP, 1986), pp. 37– 61 who notes that the sensus literalis is essentially characterised by consensus within a specific community, hence the multiplicity of literal senses throughout the history of the Church and Christopher R. Seitz, Word Without End: The Old Testament as Abiding Theological Witness (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1998), p. 12. Though James D. G. Dunn, ‘Criteria for a Wise Reading of a Biblical Text’, in Reading Texts, Seeking Wisdom (ed. David F. Ford and Graham Stanton; London: SCM, 2003), p. 42 notes that John Colet’s 1496 lectures at the University of Oxford gave priority to a single historical sensus literalis. Significantly, the various exegetic practices seen in the New Testament appear to assume that Scripture is determinate. This is clear from the Pauline tendency to ‘proof text’ with the variations of the formula καθὼς γέγραπται and the Lukan use of language of fulfilment which implies a single prophetic referent for a scriptural text. Likewise, in the examples of ‘historical’ exegesis discussed above, the assumption appears to be that Scripture has one meaning which may be articulated through a reference to history which automatically dissolves rival interpretations. In each case, a ‘false’ interpretation appears to be in view (that κατάπαυσιν refers to the promised land, that Ps 16 refers to David as the Messiah or that the Messiah is nothing more that the Son of David) and this ‘false’ interpretation is assumed to be untenable in the light of the historical exegetical argument. In this respect the New Testament is closer to the closed eschatological reading of Qumran than it is to Rabbinic reading with its admission of polysemy. Interestingly, Barton, Biblical Interpretation, pp. 160 – 161 argues that determinacy is assumed in many late 20th Century alternatives to historical criticism, such as liberation theology and feminist theology, both of which often claim that historical critical scholars have misrepresented the Bible’s approaches to issues relating to either justice or gender. In other cases, representatives of feminist scholarship condemn historical critical scholars for failing to condemn the Bible’s ‘clear’ misogyny. In each case, determinacy and the reader’s ability to discern a clear meaning of the biblical text are assumed, though often explicitly denied.  E. F. Rogers, ‘How the Virtues of the Interpreter Presuppose and Perfect Hermeneutics: The Case of Thomas Aquinas,’ JR 76:1 (1996), pp. 64– 81. Cf. Rowan Williams, ‘The Literal Sense of Scripture,’ MT 7:2 (1991), p. 123.

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of prudence and by God’s providence working through the Spirit rather than by appeals to a determinate theory of interpretation.³⁸⁷

This second theological objection to the determinacy of historical criticism must be conceded to Fowl. ‘Pre-critical’ reading of Scripture overwhelmingly assumes polysemy. However, this is not to say that determinacy has not often been a significant feature of Christian approaches to Scripture. A. K. M. Adam also employs a similar critique of historical criticism on the basis of its assumption of determinacy. Adam argues that this approach uncritically accepts the ‘myth of subsistent meaning, the premise that “meaning” is a characteristic quality inherent in a text.’ ³⁸⁸ He contends that there is simply no evidence that the text itself contains a single ‘meaning’ within it, a quality that the text itself is able to employ to govern interpretation, a quality that may protect the text from anarchic reading.³⁸⁹ Hermeneutics for approaching written texts are typically discussed in terms of their analogous relationship to various other forms of communication where meaning is intended in each act of communication and is usually understood by its intended target. Adam argues that even commonplace non-written acts of verbal and non-verbal communication are pol-

 Fowl, Engaging Scripture, pp. 39 – 40. This is discussed in greater depth in Stephen E. Fowl, ‘The Importance of a Multivoiced Literal Sense of Scripture: The Example of Thomas Aquinas,’ in Reading Scripture with the Church: Toward a Hermeneutic for Theological Interpretation (Grand Rapids: Baker, 2006), pp. 53 – 50. Fowl points out that for Aquinas, the multivocity of the literal sense is derived from an understanding that the Holy Spirit is the primary author of Scripture who can intend a variety of meanings. Cf. Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologiæ, Vol I: Latin text and English translation, Introductions, Notes, Appendices and Glossaries (ed. Thomas Gilby et al.; London/New York: Eyre and Spottiswoode/ McGraw-Hill Book Company, 1963), p. 39 (1a. 1, 10) ‘Quia vero sensus litteralis est quem auctor intendit, auctor autem sacræ Scripturæ Deus est qui omnia simul suo intellectu comprehendit, non est inconveniens, ut Augustinus dicit XII Confess. si etiam secundum litteralem sensum in una littera Scripturæ plures sint sensus.’ This provides an interesting contrast with the ‘historical’ exegetical arguments analysed above, which also typically assert both divine and human authorship at the same time through exegetical argument and citation formulae. However, in these New Testament arguments, the scriptural text is seen to be primarily contingent upon its human author, rather than its divine author, since the text is explained using this notion of contingency.  A. K. M. Adam, Faithful Interpretation: Reading the Bible in a Postmodern World (Minneapolis: Fortress, 2006), p. 2. Cf. Fowl, Engaging Scripture, pp. 33 – 34. In many other respects, Adam’s critique is also similar to that of Milbank, especially his concern at the influence of a hegemonic modernity and its view of history. This is particularly the case in Adam’s essay, ‘Docetism, Käsemann, and Christology: Why Historical Criticism Can’t Protect Christological Orthodoxy,’ SJT 49:4 (1996), pp. 391– 410, which questions the assumed neutrality of historical criticism and the theological benefit which is supposed to proceed from this.  Ibid., pp. 2– 4.

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ysemous; a subtle hint made to a neighbour, an eye full of tears: these by no means communicate a single unambiguous meaning.³⁹⁰ Why should one assume that written texts do? However, Adam’s argument lacks substance since it depends primarily upon the inability of his opponents to provide evidence of ‘subsistent meaning’, rather than on actual evidence to demonstrate its non-existence. Yet, even if Adam’s critique of ‘subsistent meaning’ is correct, which it probably is, does it really pose a threat to historical criticism? The broad assumption of historical criticism is not that meaning resides in the text itself. If that were the case, no reference to history would be needed in exegesis. Historical criticism instead views meaning as largely absent from the text itself as a piece of literature which must be read as a contingent work of an historical author or authors if it is to be understood.³⁹¹ In this sense is the written text understood to be analogous to speech: it has meaning only when understood in relation to those for whom it is an act of communication.³⁹² As Francis Watson notes,

 Ibid., pp. 6 – 7. Cf. A. K. M. Adam, ‘Poaching on Zion: Biblical Theology as Signifying Practice,’ in Reading Scripture with the Church: Toward a Hermeneutic for Theological Interpretation (Grand Rapids: Baker, 2006), p. 27.  For example, Dunn, ‘Criteria for a Wise Reading,’ p. 39. ‘In order to convey meaning [texts] must be read within the context of the language usage of their time’ and Robert Morgan with John Barton, Biblical Interpretation (Oxford: OUP, 1988), p. 269 ‘A text has no life of its own. It ‘lives’ only as an electric wire is alive. Its power originates elsewhere: in a human author.’ Cf. those writing from a greater sympathy with Theological Interpretation of Scripture, but who assert the importance of some form of authorial intention, such as Francis Watson, Text and Truth: Redefining Biblical Theology (Edinburgh: T. & T. Clark, 1997), p. 112. ‘[Authorial intention] is to be understood not as some subjective occurrence lying behind the text but as the principle of the text’s intelligibility’ and Nicholas Wolterstorff, ‘The Promise of Speech-Act Theory for Biblical Interpretation,’ in After Pentecost: Language and Biblical Interpretation (ed. Craig Bartholomew, Colin Greene and Karl Möller; Grand Rapids/Carlisle: Zondervan/Paternoster, 2002), pp. 82– 83, ‘My objection to textual-sense interpretation is that there is just no such thing as the sense of a text; textual-sense interpretation rests on a false assumption. That’s not the situation for authorial-intention and performance interpretation.’ The idea of subsistent meaning criticised by Adam is recognised in some form as a feature of the structuralist ‘New Criticism’ and the literary approaches which followed it by Anthony C. Thiselton, ‘“Behind” and “In Front Of” the Text: Language, Reference and Indeterminacy,’ in After Pentecost: Language and Biblical Interpretation (ed. Craig Bartholomew, Colin Greene and Karl Möller; Grand Rapids/Carlisle: Zondervan/Paternoster, 2002), p. 99.  Cf. Adam, Faithful Interpretation, p. 7. Here Adam himself identifies ‘circumstantial clues’ accompanying communication as interpretative aids. Might this not be extended to scholarship on a text’s origins? Adam notes in pp. 9 – 10 that, in practice, scriptural reading which assumes polysemy does not generally lead to wildly ‘implausible’ interpretations. Is this because readers

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There is a locution and an object, but there must also be an originator of the locution if the text is to be regarded as intelligible and meaningful, a communicative act rather than a random series of impenetrable hieroglyphs…That is perhaps why Jewish and Christian tradition has assigned named authors to almost all the books of the scriptural canon, ignoring the complexities of redaction and preferring to associate the texts with figures well known from the texts themselves – Moses, David, Solomon, Isaiah, Matthew or John.³⁹³

Another area of criticism which also relates to the issue of the appropriate location of meaning is the so called ‘genetic’ or ‘intentionalist’ fallacy. Historical criticism is charged with wrongly limiting the meaning of the biblical texts to their earliest possible significances for their readers, as intended by an author. Those who make this criticism argue that to understand meaning in this way is to misunderstand the nature of texts and to maintain a naive optimism about the extent to which an author’s aims can be known. A representative of this criticism is Rowan Williams. Williams notes that texts are not fixed entities but are constantly developing and evolving. ³⁹⁴ Because of this, an investigation of authorial intention can only capture a very limited aspect of a text’s significance. The ‘literal’ sense of Scripture does have a certain degree of primacy, but it must be understood as a diachronic engagement with the text, an approach which is attuned to recognise diversity and the development of the text and what it has evoked when read. He compares historical criticism to archaeology which may tell us something from the text’s past that need not govern its interpretation in the present.³⁹⁵ Williams claims that a text is not limited by its previous uses which by its very nature it must exceed.

have had in mind some notion, however limited, of a text’s contingency upon an historic setting? See also, Adam, ‘Poaching on Zion,’ pp. 26 – 27.  Watson, ‘Hermeneutics and the Doctrine of Scripture,’ p. 130.  Williams, ‘The Literal Sense of Scripture,’ p. 122. ‘[T]he diachronic reading is not by any means a naive strategy: it can operate at several different levels. I may begin by simply following the movement of the text as it stands; but that will alert me to deeper movements or rhythms within it, relations between whole blocks of material, all the ways in which a text can display subversions and tensions within its own progression – the ways in which it can put itself in question.’ This idea is quite interesting insofar as it assumes a sort of personal agency of the text. Such a notion is dismissed by others discussed below as an unwarranted assumption of subsistent meaning or textual intentionality.  Rowan Williams, ‘Historical Criticism and Sacred Text,’ in Reading Texts, Seeking Wisdom (ed. David E. Ford and Graham Stanton; London: SCM, 2003), p. 221. Cf. Paul Ricoeur, Hermeneutics and the Human Sciences (trans. J. B. Thompson; Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1981), p. 201. A ‘text’s career escapes the finite horizon lived by its author. What the text says now matters more than what the author meant to say, and every exegesis unfolds its procedures within the circumference of a meaning that has broken its moorings to the psychology of its author.’

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A text is a representation…it is writing that claims to represent the world; or a train of thought; or a “structure of feeling” (Walter Davis’s phrase). It claims attention; it proclaims itself as a mediation of reality that requires assent. But it is also a representation of the conditions of its own production; and the task of interpretation is to make plain the contradictions between what the text says it represents and what it represents of its own conditionedness…Thus, between the poles of authorial intention and cultural conditionedness there opens up another territory for interpretation, potentially limitless.³⁹⁶

According to Williams, this immediate need to look beyond the author’s intention is particularly relevant regarding biblical texts which in many cases are interpretations themselves of older material of which the author is simply a redactor. The role of historical criticism is not to interpret texts, but to explicate the ways in which the text is limited by this treatment in history so that the text might be seen to exceed this treatment.³⁹⁷ Likewise, Marcus Bockmuehl suggests that to explicate meaning only from authorial intention or an understanding of the material ‘behind the text’ is comparable with seeking to explain the significance of a violin by only investigating its constituent materials and means of production, rather than by studying the ways in which that violin has been used in the hands of various musicians.³⁹⁸ The study of a text’s historical origins is important but it does not provide exclusive access to meaning. But this argument is problematic since is difficult to understand how something like a violin may be analogous to a text. Granted that as a work of art it is an act of communication in itself, however it is principally a means of communication, a means of performing music as a text. In this way it bears a greater resemblance to language, which is not meaningless even in a purely lexical form, but which conveys meaning when it is actually employed by someone to perform an act of communication: a locution or a text. Yet this is to assume that the author’s intentions in such an act can be known. Here George A. Lindbeck makes an important distinction, drawing upon Speech-Act theory. The distinction to be maintained is between why and what, between the speaker’s act of intending a speech act (why she spoke) and the speech act’s intentionality (what she intended to say). Appeal to authorial intention in the first sense is illicit, an intentional fallacy, while in the second, it is not only legitimate but necessary; without this appeal there is

 Williams, ‘Historical Criticism’, p. 220.  Ibid., pp. 222– 223. Yet Williams appears to be much more doubtful of the continuing role of Historical Criticism in ‘The Literal Sense of Scripture,’ p. 121, where William’s description of the state of the discussion of biblical studies methodology prematurely assumes the demise of the approach.  Bockmuehl, ‘Reason, Wisdom,’ pp. 53 – 54.

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no exit from the text, that is, no non arbitrary way of discerning which of its many possible senses is the true or most plausible one.³⁹⁹

According to Lindbeck, the so-called intentionalist fallacy can be avoided if discussion of authorial intention and the nature of the text as communicative action are firmly rooted in the actual communication itself as represented in the text. In such a case, a consideration of authorial intent would be harder to characterise as Romantic and naive fantasy about what might be ‘behind the text’, but rather would be limited to the often sparse information contained in the text itself. It is the text itself which makes the situation of that text within an historical context possible. Lindbeck’s suggestion tentatively undermines the objection of Williams related to the unfounded optimism of historical criticism towards the possibility of knowing the mind of an author across the vast expanse of history. Many of the criticisms discussed above are very persuasive though others fail to do justice to the assumptions of historical criticism. Criticisms which relate to the historical-critical method’s views of textuality are perhaps less problematic than those which call attention to its views of history and divine immanence. If historical criticism is wedded to Romanticism and post-Enlightenment views of revelation why should it be employed by contemporary readers who do not share such views? If such views are inherently hostile to Christian theology, what hope should contemporary Christian readers have that historical criticism can stimulate them towards greater faithfulness to the historical grounds of Christian belief? If historical criticism employs history in such a way as to alienate the contemporary reader form the ancient biblical text, does it hold much promise for such readers? These questions urge biblical scholars to attempt to understand historical scholarship in another way in order that it might resemble the interests of Christian theology to a greater extent. However, the result of the critique of historical criticism is that, certainly within Theological Interpretation of Scripture, the historical contingency of biblical literature is ignored and texts are not interpreted in relation to the historical situations in which they were written or through which they came to their final form. The subsequent analysis will

 George A. Lindbeck, ‘Postcritical Canonical Interpretation: Three Modes of Retrieval,’ in Theological Exegesis: Essays in Honor of Brevard S. Childs (ed. Kathryn Green-McCreight and Christopher Seitz; Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1999), p. 49. This may have a parallel in Hirsch, Validity in Interpretation, pp. 16 – 17 who distinguishes between private and inaccessible ‘meaning experiences’ of the author and publicly construed meaning which the author aims to make clear through the words of the text. Cf. Umberto Eco, ‘Interpretation and History,’ in Interpretation and Overinterpretation (ed. Stefan Collini; Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1992), pp. 23 – 43.

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seek to demonstrate that this is indeed the case. Finally, this chapter will explore ways in which the ‘historical’ approaches to Scripture in the New Testament discussed above might encourage the continued use of historical scholarship alongside theological interpretation of the Bible.

4.1.3 Theological hermeneutics and the Theological Interpretation of Scripture school Whilst the historical-critical method is not the only conceivable means of discussing Scripture in terms of the historical origins of texts, the dismissal of historical criticism by theologians (even with caveats identifying a continued but limited use of the approach) has resulted in biblical scholarship which makes little or no reference to history. This tendency is most notable in the Theological Interpretation of Scripture school where the primary means of interpretation may be by relating a text to the canon, reading it in the light of a (Christological) ‘rule of faith’ or the needs of a contemporary community of readers.⁴⁰⁰ The distinctive approach to Theological Interpretation of Scripture offered by Stephen Fowl might be appropriately described as ‘pragmatic’, due to the observable influence of the pragmatist hermeneutics of Stanley Fish.⁴⁰¹ For Fish and Fowl, interpretation ought to serve the needs of the reading community in some way. So Fowl writes that ‘theology and ecclesiology should drive scriptural interpretation, not the other way around.’⁴⁰² The reading of Scripture by Christians needs to reflect the particular convictions of Christian readers and should relate to the sorts of questions such readers would ask. Moreover, Scriptural reading should be for the benefit of the Church, the reading community, and should affirm the values it holds as important. Because of this, such reading

 It is significant that the only substantial reference to the role of authorial intention in Treier, Introducing Theological Interpretation of Scripture, p. 134 (Cf. pp. 153 – 154) is in relation to the position of E. D. Hirsch, which Treier suggests has only been of interest to ‘conservative Protestant hermeneutics’. Treier writes as a practitioner of Theological Interpretation of Scripture too, and his dismissal of authorial intention is important.  Treier, ‘What is Theological Interpretation,’ p. 153.  Fowl, ‘Multivoiced Literal Sense of Scripture,’ p. 37. This is a common conviction in Theological Interpretation of Scripture which Jeanrond, ‘After Hermeneutics,’ pp. 90 – 91 suggests began with Bultmann’s Heideggerian hermeneutic which identified reading as a primarily existential activity.

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should be radically shaped by Christian practice and conviction.⁴⁰³ This sort of theological interpretation which prioritises the beliefs and needs of readers will undoubtedly reject any sense of the reader’s scholarly neutrality. Indeed, Fowl asserts that interpretation need not be scholarly at all and may, in fact, reflect the theological reading of pre-critical exegesis.⁴⁰⁴ For Fowl, virtue, rather than neutrality or learning, is the most important qualification for the exegete. This is what characterises his or her membership of the Christian reading community and ensures that reading provides affirming outcomes for that community. This pragmatic reading, a type of reading so preoccupied with defining in advance what can be regarded as a good reading, demonstrates little interest in the contingency of biblical texts upon the situations from which they developed. What matters is how they might be of use to the contemporary community. Whilst Fowl’s critique of historical criticism is to be commended, especially insofar as it rejects the vision of biblical scholarship as a neutral science which aims to ‘master’ the text and which unwittingly alienates the reader from the historically obscure text, Fowl does not replace it with an alternative approach to read the text in the light of its earliest history. Instead, Scripture is severed from its historical roots to be ‘mastered’ by the reading community. Whilst Fowl clearly rejects historical criticism, this explicit rejection is rather unusual in Theological Interpretation of Scripture. Karl Möller argues that due to the extent of the criticisms facing the historical-critical method, it should not simply be used in its present form prior to being supplemented with theological interpretation.⁴⁰⁵ To do so would be to build theology on rather uncertain foundations. Yet, at the same time, Möller warns against the dangers of rejecting historical criticism entirely. Perhaps the most important contribution of historical-critical scholarship to biblical interpretation has been to make us aware of the historical and cultural location of the texts. Given this undeniable achievement, it would be misguided to go back to the ahistorical readings characteristic of the so-called ‘pre-critical’ era. However, we would be just as mistaken, in my opinion, in embracing postmodern theories of interpretation that advocate an equally ahistorical approach.⁴⁰⁶

 Fowl, Engaging Scripture, p. 22. Yet Fowl contends that, far from simply rehearsing beliefs and practices already possessed by the reading community, this reading must be identity forming (p. 3).  Ibid., p. 9.  Karl Möller, ‘Renewing Historical Criticism,’ in Renewing Biblical Interpretation (ed. Craig G. Bartholomew, Colin Greene and Karl Möller; Grand Rapids/Carlisle: Zondervan/ Paternoster, 2000), pp. 149 – 150.  Ibid., p. 163.

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Many scholars attack historical criticism and assign to it a smaller role in the larger task of theological interpretation. However, because of this, historical scholarship is often undermined by the priority given to theological or canonical interests and contributes little to the theological readings offered for texts. Francis Watson’s approach to Theological Interpretation of Scripture is particularly interesting in terms of its relation to historical criticism and historical reading in general. Watson, like so many others, regards historical criticism (which he rightly describes as a group of methods orientated ‘towards the circumstances of the text’s origin’, rather than a single method) as ‘hermeneutically naïve’ in its claims to objectivity and normativity as well as negligent of the final form of the text regarded as Scripture by the Church.⁴⁰⁷ Watson’s solution to this is to attempt to combine historical criticism with a variety of other concerns, such as engaging with the ‘world’ ‘in front of the text’ and the theological interests of the Church. Because of this, Watson is faced with the task of combining general hermeneutics, often from Continental Philosophy with notions about Scripture from Christian Theology.⁴⁰⁸ This is, of course, a very positive move. However, whilst historical study of a text’s origins and development exists as part of a broadly theological approach to Scripture only in the unwelcome form of historical criticism, it is unlikely to play a prominent role in interpretation. Likewise, Brevard S. Childs’s canonical approach also places emphasis upon historical study of a text’s origins as a preparatory element in the formation of a theological reading, for him created by the placing of a text within the Jewish or Christian canon.⁴⁰⁹ However, whilst Childs’s commitment to the continuing theological value of historical criticism is laudable,⁴¹⁰ his theological interpretation

 Francis Watson, ‘A Response to Professor Rowland,’ SJT 48:4 (1995), pp. 518 – 519.  Ibid., p. 23, following Milbank’s critique of social-theory informed modern theology in Theology and Social Theory, suggests that systematic theology would be no better basis for a theological hermeneutic than historical criticism, since it too has denied the ability of theology to provide its own ‘meta-discourse.’ Cf. Watson, ‘Hermeneutics and the Doctrine of Scripture.’  Kathryn Green-McCreight and Christopher Seitz, ‘The Work and Witness of Brevard S. Childs: Comprehension, Discipline, Obedience,’ in Theological Exegesis: Essays in Honor of Brevard S. Childs (ed. Kathryn Green-McCreight and Christopher Seitz; Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1999), p. 3 describe Childs’ approach as ‘holistic’.  Brevard S. Childs, Exodus: A Commentary (OTL; London: SCM, 1974), p.XIII demonstrates that, though Childs employs the approach and builds upon the work of historical-critical scholars, he is able to critique its claims to objectivity and its suppression of theological exegesis for the Church.

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seems generally to proceed without reference to his historical work.⁴¹¹ A good example of this is his commentary on Ex 1:8 – 2:10 where the ‘Theological Reflection’ on the passage draws primarily upon its typological relation to the New Testament Infancy Narratives created by the Christian canon.⁴¹² Childs’s theological reading of the Bible, whilst formally acknowledging the value of historical scholarship, depends primarily upon a literary approach to the text, taking the whole Christian Bible as a single text. This, in itself, is extremely problematic to most historical-critical scholars, especially as the Bible’s unity is construed in terms, not of redaction by a common redactor, but by the decisions of Synagogue and Church many centuries after the individual texts reached something like their final form.⁴¹³ The work of Walter Moberly is one of the most notable exceptions to the tendency of Theological Interpretation of Scripture to ignore the contingency of biblical texts upon their historical origins. Moberly appears to have perfected in practice what Childs sets out in theory. A great deal of Moberly’s work is historical, yet it is also canonical, and crucially his theological interpretation is influenced demonstrably by his historical research. At the same time, the needs of the contemporary reader who approaches the text for a specific reason are recognised.⁴¹⁴ A good example of this is Moberly’s work on Jonah. Moberly ex-

 Which Lindbeck, ‘Postcritical Canonical Interpretation,’ p. 48 attributes to fear of the intentionalist fallacy.  Ibid., pp. 24– 26.  Ibid. Cf. Childs, Introduction to the Old Testament, p. 41. Theological readers of the Bible who attempt to articulate theological meaning on the basis of assumptions about individual text’s historical contingency can still discuss notions of the Bible’s unity without reference to canonisation. It is clear that authors and redactors of such texts as 2 Kings, 2 Chronicles and Nehemiah (as well as other texts which do not end great narrative sequences) did not see themselves as producing ‘stand-alone’ work. Each of these texts are dependent upon certain texts which precede them, but more importantly none of them end with any sense of finality: they each end expecting something more from the narrative of God’s dealings with his people. James A. Montgomery, A Critical and Exegetical Commentary on the Books of Kings (ICC; Edinburgh: T. & T. Clark, 1951), p. 567 ‘The book is thus concluded with the theme of the continued dignity of the house of David, with what hope in mind we may only surmise.’ Cf. Richard Bauckham, ‘Reading Scripture as a Coherent Story,’ in The Art of Reading Scripture (ed. Ellen F. Davis and Richard B. Hays; Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2003), pp. 38 – 45 for an alternative approach to this problem which attempts to take the historically contingent nature of the biblical literature seriously.  R. W. L. Moberly, The Old Testament of the Old Testament: Patriarchal Narratives and Mosaic Yahwism (Minneapolis: Fortress, 1992), p. 2. ‘The crucial question, which is prior to questions of method and sets the context for them, is that of purpose and goal. To put it simply, how we use the Bible depends on why we use the Bible.’

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plores various historically plausible situations within which to explain various elements of Jonah, in particular the prophet’s problem with YHWH in 4:2, including the post-exilic emphasis on formulaic repentance and forgiveness (which Jonah may be criticising) and earlier periods in which Assyria was feared as a possible or actual invader.⁴¹⁵ In addition to this, Moberly is sensitive to philological and literary insights. Even the ambiguity of this question in the interpretation of Jonah is explained historically, both as due to the uncertain dating of the text as well as the possible intention of the author.⁴¹⁶ This integration of historical, literary and canonical aspects can also be seen in Moberly’s stimulating essays on Abel in Hebrews and the contemporary meaning of the Shema. ⁴¹⁷ A similar approach is offered by Christopher R. Seitz who also broadly adopts Childs’s canonical approach.⁴¹⁸ Seitz suggests that the principal reason for the disjuncture between biblical criticism and Systematic Theology is the atomisation of biblical scholarship itself. He contends that if biblical scholars considered the relation of their research to other parts of biblical literature they would begin to articulate a canonical dimension to their research.⁴¹⁹ Yet, at the same time, he encourages a cautious approach to historical criticism on the basis of the canonical form of Scripture.

 Walter Moberly, ‘Jonah, God’s Objectionable Mercy, and the Way of Wisdom,’ in Reading Texts, Seeking Wisdom, (ed. David E. Ford and Graham Stanton; London: SCM, 2003), pp. 157– 164. Cf. idem., ‘Preaching for a Response? Jonah’s Message to the Ninevites Reconsidered,’ VT 53 (2003), pp. 156 – 168.  Ibid. pp. 155 and 164. ‘Although [ambiguity] could be construed as an interpretive failure, it may rather be the case that the lack of specificity as to the precise nature of Jonah’s problem is intrinsic to the story.’  R. Walter L. Moberly, ‘Exemplars of Faith in Hebrews 11: Abel,’ in The Epistle to the Hebrews and Christian Theology (ed. Richard Bauckham, Daniel R. Driver, Trevor A. Hart and Nathan MacDonald; Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2009), pp. 353 – 363. This interest in history is seen principally in Moberly’s assumption (which undergirds his whole argument) that the author of Hebrews must be understood in terms of his relation to early midrashic practice. However, this is just part of Moberly’s approach to Scripture and he can also write that ‘if the Hebrews writer is an imaginative reader of Israel’s scriptures, it is likely that we too need to be imaginative readers of his text.’ p. 362. See also, idem., ‘Toward an Interpretation of the Shema,’ in Theological Exegesis: Essays in Honor of Brevard S. Childs (ed. Kathryn Green-McCreight and Christopher Seitz; Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1999), pp. 124– 144, particularly p. 130 where the importance of reading a text within ‘a likely historical context’ is affirmed.  This similarity is also recognised in Barton, Biblical Criticism, pp. 146 – 147. Barton argues that the approaches of Moberly and Seitz are incompatible with a ‘critical’ approach to the text, due to the necessary doctrinal understanding of the text which precedes interpretation and the ‘ruled’ nature of that interpretation. The normativity claimed for this theological mode of reading seems to deny the possibility of a ‘critical’ reading.  Seitz, Word Without End, p. 104.

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The modern reader of the Old [Testament] cannot break through the final form of the witness to earlier levels of revelation and inspiration through critical reconstruction; to do this would be to ignore the very process by which ancient testimony became scripture in the first place. The point of canonical shaping is to distinguish between original recipients of revelation (“prophets”) and those who come to this revelation through a textualised witness (“Israel”).⁴²⁰

This caution is also evident in Seitz’s conviction that the sensus literalis of Scripture is indeterminate and distinct from questions of authorial intention.⁴²¹ Despite this, Seitz’s exegetical treatment of Isaiah demonstrates significant historical sensitivity.⁴²² However, John Barton, who sympathises with the canonical critic’s imperative to read texts in the light of their relations to other texts, considers the canonical approach to have failed in its attempt to bridge the gap between biblical criticism (as exemplified in historical criticism) and Christian doctrine.⁴²³ Barton argues that Childs’s canonical approach to Scripture should be regarded as a literary, rather than theological, approach. This is because the approach raises several significant theological problems. Because it insists that theological meaning is determined or nuanced by a specific text’s relation to other texts, the theological meaning proclaimed by an interpreter using the canonical approach may be something that was meant by neither author nor redactor of that text.⁴²⁴ For Barton, the sacrifice of the ‘plain sense’ which this implies is too high a price to pay for a theological reading.⁴²⁵ Moreover, the nature of ‘the canon’ is problematic. Barton notes that there are at least three major canons of Scripture: the Jewish Hebrew Canon, the Old Testament Greek canon with the New Testament used

 Ibid., p. 106.  Ibid., p. 12.  Ibid., pp. 113 ff.  John Barton, Reading the Old Testament: Method in Biblical Study (London: DLT, 1984), pp. 77– 103. Stephen Fowl, ‘Learning to Narrate Our Lives in Christ,’ in Theological Exegesis: Essays in Honor of Brevard S. Childs (ed. Kathryn Green-McCreight and Christopher Seitz; Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1999), p. 340 claims that Barton’s critique aims simply to make Childs’ work acceptable to ‘the bulk of professional biblical scholars.’  Cf. Robert P. Gordon, ‘A Warranted Version of Historical Criticism? A Response to Alvin Plantinga,’ in “Behind” the Text: History and Biblical Interpretation (ed, Craig Bartholomew, C. Stephen Evans, Mary Healy and Murray Rae; Carlisle/Michigan: Paternoster/Zondervan, 2003), p. 83 who criticises Plantinga’s emphasis upon a divine authorial intention as something which undermines the ‘dialectical’ and ‘developmental’ aspects of biblical literature: the extent to which, throughout the canon, ideas (such as the notion of life after death) are expressed in a manner which is neither immediately coherent nor systematic.  Barton, Biblical Criticism, pp. 81– 87.

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in Roman Catholicism and the Hebrew canon with the New Testament used in Protestantism. How should one decide with which canon to read Scripture? Certain texts may be interpreted quite differently depending upon which canon is employed, particularly if one’s choice of canon includes the New Testament. Barton suggests that the only means of choosing a canon is doctrinal or confessional.⁴²⁶ It is the faith of the Church or particular church tradition which will determine theological interpretation using the canonical approach. Because of this, Barton regards the approach as a legitimate literary method but maintains that as a theological method it represents a ‘retrograde step’ in the development of biblical scholarship, if the aim of such scholarship is to serve the Church theologically.⁴²⁷ Biblical scholarship, when it follows the approach of Childs and his followers, is in danger of being restricted by the doctrine of the Church, thus limiting its ability to stimulate developments in theology. In other areas of Theological Interpretation, the influence of the concerns of Systematic Theology are even more evident. Often this occurs in such a way as not to negate historical exegesis. As Ellen F. Davis points out, theological or confessional biblical readings need not be characterised by a rejection of historicalcritical approaches, but rather by the sorts of interests and questions with which the exegete approaches the text.⁴²⁸ For Davis, these questions are principally related to the need to proclaim something theological (particularly, Christological) from Scripture to the Church and to encourage both personal and corporate repentance if necessary. However, as Marcus Bockmuehl notes, Systematic Theology has recently been characterised by an inability to do more than pay ‘lip-service’ to biblical texts.⁴²⁹ Biblical texts are often simply employed as arenas for expressing theological conclusions reached apart from an engagement with the text. A good example of this tendency may be seen in the works of Robert W. Jenson. It would probably be inaccurate to identify Jenson as exemplifying Theological Interpretation of Scripture (since he is primarily a Systematic theologian),

 Ibid., pp. 93 – 95.  Ibid., p. 95.  Ellen F. Davis, ‘Teaching the Bible Confessionally in the Church,’ in The Art of Reading Scripture (ed, Ellen F. Davis and Richard B. Hays; Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2003), pp. 10 – 11. Davis’s contention that theological exegesis ought to be tentative, expressed in humbly uncertain terms (pp. 14– 15), is admirable but not entirely persuasive. It seems to depend upon an understanding of the nature of theological language not shared by the biblical literature such exegesis seeks to expound.  Bockmuehl, ‘Reason, Wisdom,’ p. 58.

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though his theological readings of the Bible are certainly in sympathy with this approach. Most notably, Jenson’s commentary on Ezekiel is published in a series alongside prominent participants in Theological Interpretation of Scripture such as Stephen Fowl and Kevin Vanhoozer. If one wishes to assess the extent to which Jenson demonstrates an exegetical interest in the historical context through which a text came to be, it is immediately evident from Jenson’s select bibliography that works of historical-critical scholarship on Ezekiel are seen by Jenson to be of limited value.⁴³⁰ Focusing on a concrete exegetical example, Jenson’s treatment of the departure of the ‫ כבוד יהוה‬in Ezekiel chapter 10 is extremely interesting. Jenson relates this episode to contemporary and patristic questions about the immanence of the λόγος outside of the particularity of the Incarnation.⁴³¹ Here, Jenson does not wish to be conclusive but simply seeks to show that a text such as Ezek 10 might feature in theological discussion on this theme. The ‘glory of YHWH’ is discussed in terms of the Shekinah in the wilderness prior to Israel’s entry into the land. This is an example of a principled canonical approach.⁴³² It is perhaps also a significant reflection of a very important motif in Jenson’s Trinitarian understanding of Israel’s history. Trinitarian language’s chief other title for “the Son” is “the Word.” “The Word of the Lord” is a Shekinah-phenomenon; when “the word of the Lord came to Solomon” about his temple, what the Lord promised was the permanence there of “my word,” which was equivalent to “I will settle among the children of Israel.”⁴³³

This may explain why Jenson is able to move from discussing the Shekinah to discussing Christology without explanation. It is easy to get the impression that it is Jenson’s considerable theological genius which provides the substance of commentary such as this. Whilst Jenson is clearly attentive to the biblical text, at times employing secondary literature and demonstrating awareness of divergent

 Jenson provides a critique of some elements of historical criticism in Robert Jenson, ‘Scripture’s Authority in the Church,’ in The Art of Reading Scripture (ed, Ellen F. Davis and Richard B. Hays; Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2003) which is discussed below.  Robert W. Jenson, Ezekiel (London: SCM, 2009), pp. 88 – 91.  Though this is a passage which raises significant problems for a canonical approach since its presentation of the temple and the number of Cherubim does not relate clearly to other texts in the canon. Leslie C. Allen, Ezekiel 1 – 19 (WBC 28; Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 1994), p. 148.  Robert W. Jenson, Systematic Theology, Volume 1: The Triune God (Oxford: OUP, 1997), p. 78. Cf. idem., The Triune Identity: God According to the Gospel (Eugene: Wipf & Stock, 2002), pp. 33 – 40.

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textual traditions,⁴³⁴ readers are told very little about the text itself. One might well ask whether a reader who is well acquainted with Jenson’s Systematic Theology will discover something different in his Ezekiel. Needless to say, Jenson does not refer the theological meaning of Ezek 10 to the situation in or for which it was written or redacted.⁴³⁵ This may represent a wider problem with Theological Interpretation of Scripture: that beyond raising important hermeneutical questions, it does not offer anything which Systematic Theology does not provide. In the case of the commentary discussed here, the writing of a biblical commentary merely represents the opportunity for a theologian to present his or her work in language borrowed from a specific biblical text. Jenson’s lack of regard for the role of Scripture’s historical contingency in interpretation may be due to his theological understanding of the text. Angus Paddison describes Scripture in almost identical terms to Jenson and appears to make a rejection of history on the basis of this description. Paddison argues that Scripture cannot be understood outside of the effect upon humankind of its theological function as a witness to God. Seeing Scripture is an exercise in seeing the actions in which it is a participant, and so we should properly speak of not just seeing Scripture but also of seeing beyond Scripture. Karl Barth’s category of Scripture as a “witness” is helpful here in reinforcing the kind of vision required. To have one’s attention grabbed by a witness is to look away from her and towards that to which she witnesses. The aim of reading a text written by a biblical author like Paul is not to seek out the putative historical circumstances behind this or that pronouncement, but to look towards the reality which so radically reoriented Paul’s life.⁴³⁶

 As in Jenson, Ezekiel, p. 89 n.1. Jenson’s discussion of ‫( גלגל‬also on this page) shows a real sensitivity to the difficulties of the Hebrew text. However, it is clear that this sort of detail is intended as an interesting aside to Jenson’s principal task of theological interpretation.  Yet even Calvin, who might properly be regarded as the theological interpreter of Scripture par excellence, ponders the intention and purpose behind Ezek 10 in his 26th Lecture on Ezekiel. John Calvin, Ezekiel I: Chapters 1 – 12 (trans. D. Foxgrover and D. Martin; Michigan/Carlisle: Eerdmans/Paternoster, 1994), p. 236. Gordon, ‘A Warranted Version of Historical Biblical Criticism?’ p. 84 writes, ‘Calvin is sufficiently aware of critical issues, and is sometimes sufficiently unorthodox as to lead some later exponents of [historical criticism] to claim him as evincing early [historical critical] sympathies.’  Paddison, Scripture, p. 3. Cf. pp. 10 – 11 and 19. Besides Barth, who is also the dominant influence upon Jenson’s understanding of Scripture, Paddison also draws heavily upon P. T. Forsyth who, significantly, wrote at the time when historical criticism was achieving dominance and was an important theological critic of the approach.

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Because Scripture is fundamentally orientated as a witness to something ‘beyond’ it, it is against the nature of the biblical text to resist this orientation and to look ‘behind’ it, to its historical origins, in order to understand it. Barton’s critique of theological interpretation is particularly relevant to Jenson, though it engages primarily with Childs, Eichrodt and von Rad.⁴³⁷ According to Barton, a confessional approach will always be likely to fail to do justice to the meaning of biblical texts because, in order to read in a way which will confirm a confessional viewpoint, one will inevitably read eisegetically. One cannot establish what the Bible means if one insists on reading it as necessarily conforming to what one already believes to be true – which is what a theological reading amounts to…It is on the whole those who believe in “moving beyond” criticism who are most prone to read their own theological systems into the scriptural text, and this is just what we should expect.⁴³⁸

The fact that Jenson’s comments on Ezekiel correspond so closely with his Systematic Theology give substance to this claim. However, according to Darren Sarisky, Barton’s critique lacks substance and depends instead upon an ‘intuitive appeal to the connection between commitment and eisegesis.’⁴³⁹ Sarisky contends that it is possible for Theological Interpretation to avoid eisegesis, noting Jenson’s Barthian claim that the world of the Bible is more real than the contemporary world. The biblical text confronts the reader and his or her world as an alien voice from the past. Moreover, Sarisky notes that Jenson recognises the human influence upon the nature of scriptural texts when he regards reading and liturgical performance of texts as sacramental.⁴⁴⁰ Therefore, Sarisky contends that ‘Jenson’s program by no means requires him to reject in toto what Barton calls biblical criticism.’⁴⁴¹ Whilst this may be true, there is simply no evidence that Jenson’s readings of Scripture are anything more than the application of Systematic Theology, realised apart from the texts being read, to those texts being read. As noted above, a particular feature of historical criticism rejected by recent scholars is its association of meaning with authorial intent. Yet this is not a uni-

 Barton, Biblical Criticism, pp. 164– 167. Barton argues that each of these scholars’ attempts at ‘Old Testament Theology’ has looked remarkably like their confessional standpoints.  Ibid. Cf. Gordon, ‘A Warranted Version of Historical Biblical Criticism?’ p. 83.  Darren Sarisky, ‘What is Theological Interpretation? The Example of Robert W. Jenson,’ IJST 12:2 (2010), p. 205.  Ibid., p. 210. Sarisky refers here to Robert W. Jenson, Systematic Theology, Volume 2: The Works of God (Oxford: OUP, 1999), pp. 275 – 276.  Ibid., p. 215.

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versal position amongst advocates of theological hermeneutics. Within Theological Interpretation of Scripture, the works of Kevin J. Vanhoozer (alongside those of Nicolas Wolterstorff) represent the most sustained attempts to incorporate some form of authorial intention into theological hermeneutics.⁴⁴² Both Vanhoozer and Wolterstorff do this with the aid of Speech-Act Theory.⁴⁴³ Vanhoozer writes, My convictions [are] (1) that dealing with texts is ultimately a mode of engaging persons and what persons have done by means of writing; (2) that as biblical interpreters, we are ultimately dealing with the Holy Spirit presenting Christ in the Scriptures; and (3) that as biblical interpreters, our task is to discern what the Spirit is saying by means of what the human authors of Scripture have said.⁴⁴⁴

Yet Vanhoozer is not merely interested in the human authors of the biblical text. He insists upon developing a special theological hermeneutic and, perhaps rather surprisingly, Speech-Act Theory features here too.⁴⁴⁵ Vanhoozer argues that God is the ultimate ‘paradigm’ for communicative action, whose word always accomplishes its intended end, noting Isaiah 55:11.⁴⁴⁶ Communication is modelled by God the economic Trinity, as the Father conveys the transformative Word,

 The Gadamerian approach of Thiselton is also interesting. For Thiselton, ‘“Behind” and “In Front Of” the Text,’ pp. 107– 116 the creative and communicative intentions of the biblical author ‘set in motion’ the supplementary interpretation of the world ‘in front of’ the text.  The association of Vanhoozer and Wolterstorff is a feature of Treier’s analysis of Theological Interpretation of Scripture. Treier, ‘What is Theological Interpretation?’ pp. 147. Treier designates the work of both of these scholars as employing ‘author and reader-centered approaches’ because of their common use of Speech-Act Theory.  Kevin J. Vanhoozer, ‘Imprisoned or Free? Text, Status, and Theological Interpretation in the Master/Slave Discourse of Philemon,’ in Reading Scripture with the Church: Toward a Hermeneutic of Theological Interpretation (Michigan: Baker, 2006), pp. 60 – 61. Cf. idem.,’From Speech Acts to Scripture Acts: The Covenant of Discourse and the Discourse of Covenant,’ in After Pentecost: Language and Biblical Interpretation (ed. Craig Bartholomew, Colin Greene and Karl Möller; Grand Rapids/Carlisle: Zondervan/Paternoster, 2002), p. 25 ‘Interpretation is the process of inferring authorial intentions and ascribing illocutionary acts.’  Though this hermeneutic is to be understood as generally applicable; a theological approach to reading which can be used with any text. Kevin J. Vanhoozer, First Theology: God, Scripture and Hermeneutics (Downers Grove: IVP, 2002), p. 208 asserts that ‘every other book should be read like the Bible.’  Vanhoozer, ‘From Speech Acts to Scripture Acts,’ pp. 10 – 13. Cf. Nicholas Wolterstorff, Divine Discourse: Philosophical Reflections on the Claim that God Speaks (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1995) who offers a sustained discussion of the possibility of divine speech through a human agent or ‘deputy’ and of scriptural reading which aims to discover ‘authorial discourse.’

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‘God’s very person’, in the incarnation.⁴⁴⁷ In practical terms, this sense of divine illocution is reflected in Vanhoozer’s emphasis upon canonical interpretation.⁴⁴⁸ However, returning to the human author, Vanhoozer, like Wolterstorff, suggests that authorial intention ought not to be something conceived of in an abstract sense (the intentionalist fallacy) but rather as something grounded in the actual words of communication in the text. According to Vanhoozer, biblical interpreters should ask not ‘why was this said?’ but rather, ‘what was said?’⁴⁴⁹ Interpretation is a kind of “status transaction” that involves, among other things, recognizing what speech acts “belong” to which persons and of ascribing certain “standings” to persons in light of the speech acts that those persons perform.⁴⁵⁰

Likewise, Wolterstorff regards the inextricable association of ‘authorial discourse’ and the text itself as the essence of Ricoeur’s rejection of hermeneutics which aspire to determine authorial intention as something ‘behind the text.’ I suggest that mainly what accounts for Ricoeur’s ignoring the option of authorial discourse interpretation of texts was his conviction that it’s not really a distinct option. His assumption, never-quite spoken, was that, for an interpreter of a text in a distanciated situation,

 Ibid., p. 11. The Holy Spirit represents a nearly identical form of communication, following an Irenaean model of the economic Trinity. This notion of referring the nature of communication to the Trinity is developed into a special hermeneutic in which the human agency of the biblical authors is denied in Mark Alan Bowald, ‘The Character of Theological Interpretation of Scripture,’ IJST 12:2 (2010), p. 168. ‘[T]he interpretation of Scripture is a practice that is fundamentally distinct from reading other books, not by virtue of any unique feature of human agency in text or reading but rather in its origination in its unique relationship to divine agency. Theological interpretation, therefore, is not unique simply as a result of this as a formal causal relationship between divine and human agency, but rather receives its quintessential shape and definition from the character of the divine author/speaker which is refracted in the speech action of the Trinity.’ Cf. C. Clifton Black, ‘Trinity and Exegesis,’ ProEcc 19:2 (2010), pp. 151– 180 and John Webster, Holy Scripture: A Dogmatic Sketch (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2003) which adopts this approach as part of a Systematic account of Scripture. In beginning discussion of hermeneutics by seeking to articulate a theological account of textuality, Vanhoozer and others are following the suggestion of Anthony C. Thiselton, New Horizons in Hermeneutics: The Theory and Practice of Transforming Biblical Reading (Michigan: Zondervan, 1992), p. 63.  Ibid., pp. 31 ff. See particularly Vanhoozer’s maxim on p. 43, ‘The Spirit speaks in and through Scripture precisely by rendering its locutions at the sentential, generic and canonical levels perlocutionarily efficacious.’ Cf. Wolterstorff, ‘The Promise of Speech-Act Theory,’ p. 83 f. and the notion of ‘double agency discourse.’ Wolterstorff’s approach depends not so much on the canonical nature of the text, but on the theological authority of the biblical author to speak on behalf of another party: God.  Vanhoozer, ‘Imprisoned or Free?’ p. 59.  Ibid., p. 65.

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everything of significance in the act of discourse, of which that text was the medium, has been lodged in, and is therefore recoverable from, the sense of the text which was composed. Though the act of discourse is indeed distinct from the sense of the text, that distinctness, to the interpreter at a distance, makes no difference.⁴⁵¹

The approaches of Vanhoozer and Wolterstorff provide an extremely promising association of an understanding of biblical texts as the speech-acts of particular and historical human agents or deputies with an understanding that these texts are also in some sense the discourse of God. One cannot help comparing this combination with the New Testament citation formulae which imply this dual contingency, such as ὁ τοῦ πατρὸς ἡμῶν διὰ πνεύματος ἁγίου στόματος Δαυὶδ παιδός σου εἰπών (Acts 4:24) and ὅτι καλῶς τὸ πνεῦμα τὸ ἅγιον ἐλάλησεν διὰ Ἠσαΐου τοῦ προφήτου πρὸς τοὺς πατέρας ὑμῶν λέγων (Acts 28:25b-26a). However, it is not clear whether this approach urges readers to articulate the meaning of Scripture on the basis of its human contingency or whether the text’s value as ‘divine discourse’ urges reading to be more intuitive, sensing the theological meaning as the personal recipient or addressee of that discourse. As Wolterstorff notes, most interpretation just happens.⁴⁵² It is not conscious or methodical. He suggests that this is also particularly the case in theological interpretation, noting Augustine as an example of an exegete able to proceed straight to theological interpretation without methodological explanation. What then is the role of historical scholarship? Is this approach to biblical interpretation likely to encourage theological interpretation which gives little consideration to the historical question of what a text might have meant because the text is understood primarily as discourse divinely orientated towards the reader? Whilst it is quite rare for those interested in developing theological hermeneutics to reject historical exegesis which articulates the meaning of a text on the basis of its contingency upon a particular historical setting, it is evident that the rejection of historical criticism has severed biblical interpretation from its moorings in historical investigation. Whilst such historical biblical scholarship is given a place in theological hermeneutics by many scholars, it rarely exercises any significant influence over the results of interpretation. As Charlie Trimm argues,

 Wolterstorff, Divine Discourse, p. 149.  Ibid., p. 130.

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While the rejection of the excesses of historical criticism is needed, some [Theological Interpretation of Scripture] interpreters…have gone so far as to ignore history altogether – that is, the historical context of the text.⁴⁵³

In each theological hermeneutic studied above, something other than history occupies the dominant place. Of course, it would be unwise to ignore the history of interpretation, the various canons within which contemporary readers find a particular biblical text and the theological, ecclesial and social needs of contemporary readers. Biblical interpretation would certainly be impoverished if historical reading provided the only means of access to the meaning or value of a text. However, equally, biblical interpretation has been impoverished by the rejection of historical criticism and the subsequent loss of meaningful interaction with a text’s earliest meaning and purpose. There are several reasons why theological interpretation would benefit from a continued interest in a text’s historical origins and development. These will be explored below with special reference to the types of historical exegetical reasoning employed in the New Testament literature which were discussed in the first three chapters.

4.2 Historical and theological hermeneutics: a recommendation Theological Interpretation of Scripture poses a significant problem for biblical scholarship which defines itself as essentially historical scholarship. Whilst there are notable exceptions, most of the scholars who identify or are associated with Theological Interpretation of Scripture demonstrate little interest in the historical contingency of biblical texts, just as they demonstrate little interest in the research of other scholars who do take this contingency seriously. Is biblical scholarship set to become merely an expression of doctrine, undertaken with little reference to historical scholarship, by those whose reputations are primarily as theologians with a broad range of theological interests? Could it be that biblical commentaries of the future will focus primarily upon reception history and

 Charlie Trimm, ‘Evangelicals, Theology, and Biblical Interpretation: Reflections on the Theological Interpretation of Scripture,’ BBR 20:3 (2010), p. 319. Trimm notes, for example, that Jaroslav Pelikan’s commentary on Acts works from the Western Text as the text most used in history of the interpretation of Acts, rather than seeking to determine the earliest possible text for Acts.

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contemporary theological interpretation?⁴⁵⁴ If historical-critical scholarship continues, is it likely to do so in even greater isolation from biblical scholarship of this sort? Whilst many of the Theological Interpretation of Scripture school would not wish this to be the case, it is not evident in the actual interpretation of texts by such scholars that the historical contingency of those texts is allowed to influence interpretation for the contemporary context. This situation is lamentable. It will be argued below that the study of a text’s historical origins and development ought to be considered both an essential and invigorating element of Christian theological interpretation of Scripture, despite the alleged failure of historical criticism to be a resource for Christian Theology. The ‘theological’ use of historical reasoning in the New Testament may provide some indication of how historical study of a text’s origins and early development could feature as an essential part of the Church’s theological hermeneutics.⁴⁵⁵

4.2.1 Historical study is not alien to theology It has been the purpose of this study to demonstrate that the practice of reading Scripture as contingent upon an historical situation or person is a small but significant element in the exegetical practice of the New Testament. Whilst this practice is not the same as historical criticism (many criticisms of which need to be taken very seriously), it shares the same essential assumption that the theological potential of a text is in some way linked to the historical situation from which it emerged. Moreover, the significance of this type of reading in the New Testament is that it represents a distinctive development, a mode of reasoning unattested in Semitic and Hellenistic-Jewish exegetical practice of the period. Yet this development is no coincidence. As has been argued, this type of ‘historical’ reasoning is an expression of important New Testament emphases: salvation history and/or the teaching of Jesus Christ. This study has shown that it the idea of Scripture’s historical contingency is not new and it is certainly not simply a feature of post-Enlightenment historicism. In the early Church, ‘historical’ exegesis was accepted as a valid approach to Scripture, one which was linked to the earliest teaching of the Apostles and Jesus himself.

 One might wish to consider whether there is even a market for such scholarship. How many commentaries cataloguing the reception history of a particular book can be written which fulfil the essential academic requirement to be innovative?  Another attempt at rehabilitating historical study after the assumed demise of historical criticism (due to a philosophical challenge, rather than its replacement by literary criticism) is offered by McLean, ‘The Crisis of Historicism,’ pp. 233 – 235.

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In asserting this ‘pre-history’ of historical scholarship (though the differences between historical criticism and the New Testament practice have been noted), this study stands within a recent trend of providing such a defence of the historical character of biblical scholarship. For example, an important element in Joseph A. Fitzmyer’s defence of historical criticism is an account of similar approaches employed prior to the Enlightenment.⁴⁵⁶ Fitzmyer begins by noting examples of early uses of ‘criticism’, such as the work of Zenodotus the Alexandrian Grammarian, the various Septuagintal recensions of Aquila, Symmachus and Theodotion and Origen’s Hexapla. He also regards Augustine and Jerome as employing critical approaches to the Bible. However, it may be incorrect to regard these examples of ‘criticism’ as embodying historical criticism. If they were examples of this, one might expect to see some reference to history ‘behind the text’ which is distinctly lacking, except, perhaps, in the case of Zenodotus. Yet Fitzmyer continues his history of ‘criticism’ to include the Renaissance emphasis on recursus ad fontes, at which point reference to the historical contingency of Scripture begins to feature to a significant extent in the works of the Reformers. The Renaissance is also seen by Barton as an important period in the development of a critical approach to the Bible, exemplified by the Catholic biblical scholar Richard Simon, but is preceded by the critical approaches of Julius Africanus and Jerome.⁴⁵⁷ Theodore of Mopsuestia and the Antiochan School are often considered as providing early examples of a ‘critical’ and perhaps ‘historical’ approach to biblical interpretation. As with New Testament examples of historical reasoning within exegesis, it must always be noted that such exegetical practice differs significantly from historical criticism.⁴⁵⁸ What is perhaps particularly interesting about Theodore is that he was willing to challenge the consensus of theological interpretation offered by the Church if he felt his work on the text demanded this. For example, Theodore follows Diodore of Tarsus in restricting the number of Christological psalms (thought to predict the Messiah) to four.⁴⁵⁹ Must historical reasoning then be understood purely as a product of the anti-theological En Fitzmyer, The Interpretation of Scripture, pp. 61– 62.  Barton, Biblical Criticism, pp. 124– 132. It must be noted that, unlike Fitzmyer, Barton does not view these readers of Scripture as participating in a primitive form of historical criticism. His purpose is broader, seeking to demonstrate the existence of a ‘critical’ approach to the text.  For example, Dudley Tyng, ‘Theodore of Mopsuestia as an Interpreter of the Old Testament,’ JBL 50 (1931), pp. 298 – 303 points out that Theodore demonstrates no knowledge of biblical Hebrew.  Harry S. Pappas, ‘Theodore of Mopsuestia’s Commentary on Psalm 44 (LXX): A Study of Exegesis and Christology,’ GOTR 47:1 (2002), p. 55 – 56. Pappas characterises Theodore’s exegetical approach as interested in the ‘plain, narrative meaning’ of Scripture.

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lightenment (if indeed this is an accurate portrayal of the concerns of the Enlightenment)? Barton writes of Origen’s ‘critical’ response to Africanus that, Even this one example is sufficient to show that neither the Enlightenment, nor the Reformation, nor even the Renaissance was a necessary precondition of such questions arising in the mind of an acute reader. It is thus impossible to argue that criticism became possible only through the establishment of Enlightenment values; it was already in existence in ancient times…The Enlightenment perhaps did release critical awareness to an extent that had not been in evidence earlier, but it did not create such awareness in itself.⁴⁶⁰

Whilst this is no doubt true, there is a significant difference between biblical criticism prior to the Enlightenment and that which followed it. What is perhaps most fascinating about pre-Enlightenment biblical criticism is that it operates within the context of a reader’s theological worldview: it does not automatically seek to explain texts without reference to theology. This is perhaps particularly true of the New Testament examples of ‘historical’ exegesis, if one can really call them ‘critical’. In any case, as will be seen below, historical study of Scripture, even in the guise of historical criticism, does not rule out reading the text as addressing areas of theological interest. Werner G. Jeanrond contends that historical and philological study of biblical texts cannot realistically be separated from questions of theology due to the ‘semantic potential’ of the texts themselves.⁴⁶¹ It is not possible to comment upon biblical texts without commenting on theology. This is because the texts themselves raise theological questions. Whilst the criticisms of historical criticism may be worthy of attention, Milbank’s rejection of this approach because of its association with the deliberate attempt of Modernity to de-theologise the world should not result in the complete rejection of the assumption that a text may be interpreted as a contingent product of a particular historical context. There is plenty of evidence, not least from the New Testament, that this assumption of the text’s historical contingency may exist within a theological approach to both history and the biblical text. For this reason, historical study of a text’s origins must be seen as a vital, perhaps even distinctively Christian, element within theological interpretation of the Bible.

 Barton, Biblical Criticism, p. 132.  Jeanrond, ‘After Hermeneutics’, pp. 88 – 89. Despite this, Jeanrond also criticises the ‘quiet assumption’ of biblical scholars that they do not need to consider the theological implications of their research, imagining that someone else will do that.

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4.2.2 Historical study encourages theological narrative As noted above, it has been argued that historical criticism has served to separate the contemporary reader from the biblical text to the extent that theological interpretation becomes exceedingly difficult. However, this is not necessarily a feature of all historical reading of a text as a contingent product of a particular historical context. Indeed, the historical exegesis practised in the New Testament operates within a framework of historical and theological narrative, uniting both reader and text. Narrative is a popular feature of Theological Interpretation of Scripture. This perhaps reflects the post-liberal assertion that in a global society of competing rationalities and cultural-linguistic worlds, theological truth is best articulated as a closed, self-referential narrative or story. Moreover, human identity (and therefore the self-understanding of readers) is understood narrativally, as identity is articulated with reference to cultural, political or religious stories within which we play a part of some kind. Yet this is hardly a new observation. Rather it is a development of existentialism’s emphasis upon conceiving of being as something grounded in time, not as an abstract quality. At the same time, the plotting of one’s life within a narrative is a common feature of apocalyptic literature, including much of the New Testament.⁴⁶² The audience of the Epistle to the Hebrews were encouraged to understand themselves as standing in faithful continuity with Abel, Enoch, Noah, Abraham, Isaac, Joseph, Moses’ parents, Moses himself, the people of Israel, Rahab, Gideon, Barak and many more of that great cloud of witnesses. The audience is encouraged to see themselves as standing at the great climax of this narrative of faith, within which they are to play their part. Likewise, Luke encourages his readers to situate themselves with the early Church with God’s great plan of salvation history, the story in which he fulfils his prophetic promises. And yet it as those who find their identity within these theological narratives that Christians are able to perform ‘historical’ exegesis. The challenge for Theological Interpretation of Scripture is not to force a dichotomy between a theologically narrated sense of the reader’s identity and the view that Scripture is to be expounded as historically contingent: a product of a particular set of historical circumstances. George A. Lindbeck contends that Christian biblical exegesis should be both historical-critical and dependent upon theological narrative.⁴⁶³ The task of his Cf. Benjamin Sargent, ‘The Narrative Substructure of 1 Peter’, ExpTim 124.10 (2013), pp. 485 – 490.  George A. Lindbeck, ‘The Story-Shaped Church: Critical Exegesis and Theological Interpretation,’ in The Theological Interpretation of Scripture: Classic and Contemporary Readings (ed.

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torical criticism is to describe and defend the Christological narrative within which Scripture can be read. This narrative is derived from the attempts in the New Testament to define the early Christian community’s relation to Israel in terms of continuity. Lindbeck argues that the New Testament writers understood the Church to be in continuity with Israel and so appropriated Israel’s narrative to itself. Moreover, they understood both Israel and the Church to be types of Christ, making the narrative of God’s people essentially Christological.⁴⁶⁴ Lindbeck suggests that theological exegesis ought to employ this narrative of Israel and the Church to apply texts appropriately to the situation of the Church in the contemporary world. What the Bible means does not necessarily correspond imitatively to what it meant; or to put this same point in uncompromisingly theological language, what God said in scripture is not necessarily what he now says. The proper theological interpretation is one that is intelligible, efficacious, and scripturally faithful, but the conditions for intelligibility and efficaciousness change, and faithfulness is not equivalent to reiteration. Departures from the story-shaped understanding of the Church may thus at times be desirable even for those who hold to the primacy of narrative meanings.⁴⁶⁵

Christological narrative, for Lindbeck, serves as a rule of faith used to determine the literal sense of Scripture, which he regards not as determined by an historical author, but rather as the ‘controlling signification of a text’ for a particular community.⁴⁶⁶ There is much to commend Lindbeck’s theological hermeneutic: it maintains a place for historical scholarship, it encourages the Christian reader to empathise with the text as part of his or her story and it is sensitive to the changing context and interests of the reader. However, it is perhaps worrying that an historical

Stephen E. Fowl; Oxford: Blackwell, 1997), pp. 39 – 40. Cf. idem., ‘Postcritical Canonical Interpretation,’ pp. 46 – 49 for Lindbeck’s understanding of the necessity of exegetical appeals beyond the text.  Ibid., p. 43. The argument here depends upon an historically difficult reading of Matt 2:15 where it is assumed that Matthew understands Hos 11:1 to refer both to Christ and to Israel. However, this is what Nolland, Matthew, p. 123 also suggests: that the quotation of Hos 11:1 ‘establishes an Israel typology: as a little later in adult life Jesus will be called upon to relive the wilderness temptations of Israel (4:1– 11), so now as an infant he retraces in his own life the foundational experience of Israel in being called by God out of Egypt.’ Yet such a polysemous approach to Scripture is not characteristic of the New Testament literature. Morris, Matthew, p. 43 notes that ‘where Hosea is referring to the Exodus, Matthew is thinking of Jesus’ flight from Egypt.’  Lindbeck, ‘The Story-Shaped Church’, p. 46.  Ibid., p. 41.

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approach to the text is limited only to the formation and protection of the rule of faith and does not appear to feature in the actual interpretation of specific texts. This situation would undoubtedly limit the extent to which historical study could influence interpretation. In addition to this, the limitation of historical scholarship simply to the formation of the rule of faith leaves it unable to provide any scrutiny for theological reading which may proceed to read texts without reference to their earliest meanings. This is particularly the case with regard to Old Testament literature, which could only be read Christologically. This, like so much Theological Interpretation of Scripture, leaves interpretation impoverished by a failure to allow biblical literature to express its historical alterity. However, Lindbeck’s insistence upon the situation of both reader and text within a narrated history perhaps reflects the use of Scripture in Acts and Hebrews as discussed above. Likewise, Robert Jenson argues that theological exegesis must proceed from the premise that Scripture is essentially narratival and that its narrative embraces the Christian reader.⁴⁶⁷ In this respect his approach bears a resemblance to the ‘theological’ reading offered by Luke-Acts and Hebrews which both understand Scripture to refer to the Christian community as standing within the history of Israel. Jenson suggests that because the Christian reader is embraced by the narrative of Scripture, nothing can be known from Scripture external to that relationship. Scripture (as Christians ought to understand it) is exclusively addressed to committed readers and can say nothing about God, the world or even the history of Israelite religion, outside the story of which the Christian reader is a part. It cannot be the purpose of Scripture to provide us with certified information about some entity outside its story about us, whether that third entity be God or certain classical religious experiences or the theological history of Israel and the primal church or whatever. Since we and Scripture and what Scripture talks about are not external to one another, since Scripture tells a story about us that we are even now living, there is no position from which such exchanges could be conducted – perhaps not even God has such an Archimedean point.⁴⁶⁸

 Jenson, ‘Scripture’s Authority in the Church,’ pp. 29 – 31 and idem., ‘Hermeneutics and the Life of the Church,’ pp. 90 – 94. Cf. Williams, ‘The Literal Sense of Scripture,’ p. 125, ‘Christian interpretation is unavoidably engaged in ‘dramatic’ modes of reading: we are invited to identify ourselves in the story being contemplated, to reappropriate who we are now, and who we shall or can be, in terms of the story. Its movements, transactions, transformations, become ours; we take responsibility for this or that position within the narrative…[A] ‘dramatic’ reading means that our appropriation of the story is not a static relation of confrontation with images of virtue or vice…but an active working through of the story’s movement in our own time.’  Ibid., p. 30.

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This theological understanding of committed reading is used to demonstrate the inadequacy of the historical-critical method for Christian interpretation of Scripture. This inadequacy stems from the historical distinction the method demands between a past ‘meaning then’ (constructed as an abstract meaning, external to the position of the reader within Scripture’s narrative) and a contemporary ‘meaning now’.⁴⁶⁹ But does a narrative approach to biblical interpretation which involves the reader in the story of the people of God need to undermine historical difference?⁴⁷⁰ Whilst Jenson’s hermeneutic does not logically appear to allow expression of such difference, which is dissolved by the Church’s liturgical entry into Scripture’s narrative, he nevertheless affirms the importance of its expression in the teaching of the Church. He does so to emphasise the difference between narrative and myth. Faith needs to maintain the historical distances within the biblical narrative, as these constitute the compass of the biblical community, because the story Scripture tells is not a myth. The function of the great myths is to tell what happens always and everywhere. Therefore, the narrative succession of the events they tell is unessential, and the myths always tend to collapse into abstract doctrines. It is possible to misread Scripture as myth: in current terms, as the metaphor or symbol of something or other.⁴⁷¹

Whilst the embracing of the reader by the scriptural narrative appears to result in the diminishment of historical difference, as though contemporary readers are to interpret their situations as identical to those of 8th century prophets or 1st century Galilean fishermen, the uses of historical exegetical arguments discussed in my earlier chapters suggest that this is not a necessary assumption. These arguments assume that the meaning of a scriptural text is contingent upon an historical situation, a situation different from the present context of the interpreter. For the author of Hebrews, David uttered the words of Ps 95:7– 11 in the land, a matter of significance to David, but not for the audience of Hebrews who are to hope for a heavenly πατρίδα. The situation in which a scriptural text came to be and the situation of contemporary readers are by no means understood to be identical. Yet, there is no suggestion that this is a problem for Heilsgeschichten which emphasise the continuity of the Church with Israel. Narrative history, here, permits difference. It is a history within which conditions change and develop, yet which remains the same story.

 Ibid., p. 31.  Indeed, Fowl, ‘Learning to Narrate,’ pp. 341– 353 argues for the necessary function of narrative in human self understanding. According to Fowl, such narratives are able to express difference and contingency, seeing self as ‘decentered’ by particular events in a narrative.  Jenson, ‘Hermeneutics and the Life of the Church,’ p. 104.

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If historical study of a text’s origins can function within theological hermeneutics alongside a theological account of history, how might it differ from historical criticism? Firstly, it is worth noting that if historical study can interpret Scripture whilst enabling both text and reader to be understood with the same theological narrative of history, a significant theological problem with historical criticism might be overcome. Historical criticism can affect a sort of hyper-distanciation in which the text is rendered so alien to the reader that it simply cannot be related to his or her theological interests. A theological narrative shared by both the reader and the text would enable reading to be sympathetic with the text, and its author understood as part of the reader’s world.⁴⁷² Yet this does not need to be seen as automatically dissolving historical difference. As has been noted, the Heilsgeschichten of Scripture itself permit and occasionally emphasise such difference. However, when historical study of a text’s origins proceeds upon a theological account of history it will obviously contrast sharply with historical criticism. This contrast will exist for a number of reasons, largely related to the acknowledged commitments of the reader. The idea of constructing a plausible history ‘behind the text’ (which may or may not agree with the ‘history’ claimed by the text) will also be affected by the adoption of a theological narrative. One might wish to argue, as Iain W. Provan does, that this theological history is by no means less authentic than a post-Enlightenment history since all ‘history is the telling and retelling of unverifiable stories.’⁴⁷³ The theological story of Israel and the Church cannot be known apart from the texts in which this is performed as a history. And yet Christian exegetes will want to situate the origins of biblical literature somewhere within the theological narrative of history if scriptural meaning is in some way contingent upon historical context. However, when biblical narrative purports to represent historical fact and, indeed, builds claims to theo-

 As Murray A. Rae, ‘Creation and Promise: Towards a Theology of History,’ in “Behind” the Text: History and Biblical Interpretation (ed. Craig Bartholomew, C. Stephen Evans, Mary Healy and Murray Rae; Carlisle/Michigan: Paternoster/Zondervan, 2003), p. 296 posits ecclesiologically: ‘The church is a body extended through space and time…The apostolic witness, therefore, for all that it has been shaped by the cultural conditions of the first century, is not something from which we are separated by a ‘broad ugly ditch’. The apostles are not citizens of a world we no longer inhabit. They are part of the one community that is called into being and continues to be shaped by God to bear witness to the working out of his purpose. That christocentric and pneumatological reality overrides what differences there certainly are between Jew and Greek, male and female, ancient and modern, and thus enables the Spirit-inspired speech of the apostles to be heard ‘in our own language.’  Iain W. Provan, ‘Knowing and Believing: Faith in the Past,’ in “Behind” the Text: History and Biblical Interpretation (ed. Craig Bartholomew, C. Stephen Evans, Mary Healy and Murray Rae; Carlisle/Michigan: Paternoster/Zondervan, 2003), p. 263.

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logical truth upon concrete historical events (such as the Exodus), the historicity of such events is of some importance. A theological narrative of history need not be adopted as a means of providing access to the earliest intended meanings of a text if that narrative is known to be historically implausible. However, scholars need to be more self-critical when creating and applying criteria for assessing whether or not something is historically implausible, as Milbank and others have shown. Theological narrative cannot be judged simply by comparison with a particular post-Enlightenment account of the causality of the natural world. As Mary E. Healy argues, what is needed is a critical approach to reading theological narrative ‘through the text’ as the only source of access to the historical ‘reality’ to which that text bears witness.⁴⁷⁴ She notes, following Ricoeur, that narrative is uniquely able to communicate to the reader something of an historical event’s interiority, its deeper (theological) significance, and that the narrative which Scripture proclaims should be understood as analogous to the humanity of Christ in relation to his divinity, a text’s theological value. These two elements share an ‘indissoluble unity’ and one cannot be understood in abstraction from the other.⁴⁷⁵ Because of this analogy, Healy suggests that a theological approach to Scripture might be thoroughly historical, concentrating on the historical ‘humanity’ of the biblical literature, whilst falling short of historical criticism’s aim to reach ‘behind the text’ without respect for the theological story which the text tells. It must, however, be acknowledged that the adoption of a theological perspective on history as a teleological ‘salvation history’ is deeply problematic for a number of reasons. Principally, an approach such as this departs from historical criticism by situating historical study within a special hermeneutic, one that scholars in other fields would not apply to their respective texts of study. Yet if historical criticism really is theologically limited by the post-Enlightenment presuppositions upon which it operates, as Milbank and others contend, then it must be re-cast within a special theological hermeneutic if it is to function properly as a stimulus to Christian Theology. Perhaps this will not be too great a sacrifice as Modernity’s hegemonic account of reality is dismantled across a wide range of academic disciplines, leaving a variety of competing narratives.⁴⁷⁶ Another problem with this approach is the sheer diversity of theological narratives of history held by Christians, particularly when considering the eschatological

 Healy, ‘Behind, in Front of…or Through the Text? pp. 184– 191.  Ibid., p. 191.  A situation popularly described by Alasdair MacIntyre, Whose Justice? Which Rationality? (London: Duckworth, 1988), p. 352. Cf. idem., After Virtue: A Study in Moral Theory, Second Edition, (London: Duckworth, 1987), pp. 1– 5.

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telos (if at all) of God’s dealings with his creation. This diversity is also seen in this study between the Heilsgeschichten of Luke-Acts and Hebrews and their contrasting typological emphases. Part of the problem here is that historical criticism has assumed a single perspective on history which perhaps anticipates replacement with another unchallenged and unchallengeable account of history to enable scholarship to continue to be ‘objective’. Perhaps this also is an area in which historical scholarship must accommodate assumptions hitherto alien to it. After all, the assumption that a text is contingent upon its historical setting appears to function in both Acts and Hebrews despite their differing Heilsgeschichten.

4.2.3 Historical study encourages alterity and theological rigour When Peter in the Pentecost speech in Acts 2 reads Ps 16 Christologically on the basis of assumptions about David’s identity, he challenges the contemporary theological interpretation of that passage which can perhaps be glimpsed in some form in Ps Midr 16. Likewise, Jesus’ reading of Ps 110 in the Davidssohnfrage sets out to challenge existing assumptions about the identity of the Messiah. At a very basic level, historical exegesis in the New Testament functions to remove a text from existing interpretation to posit it in a radically challenging way. When biblical texts are read as contingent in some sense upon historical situations which are not that of the contemporary reader, reading is more likely to be a challenging practice in which the text appears strange. As Hirsch argued, without reading a text as necessarily contingent upon an author there is little chance of self-critical interpretation.⁴⁷⁷ Of course, a claim such as this is hugely problematic since it appears to assume that an author’s historical identity is somehow readily available to the reader who will approach it neutrally. Often the author is lost beyond any meaningful comprehension. This is not necessarily as problematic as might first appear, as will be suggested in the discussion below. Historical study of a text’s origins will never be ‘objective’ or ‘scientific’ in the manner in which historical criticism aimed to be, yet it can still serve to make the text appear strange and perhaps uncomfortable to the reader. This, in part, is because it calls readers to recognise the values and interests with which they approach the text and allows for the realisation that these may not be the values and interests in which a particular biblical text first served as an agent of interpersonal communication. Yet, as suggested above from the conjunc-

 Hirsch, Validity, p. 212.

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tion of the exegetical use of history and Heilsgeschichten which stress continuity, distanciation does not need to alienate the reader from the text so long as history is understood theologically. In terms of creating a theologically stimulating means of distanciation, the rhetoric of the earliest exponents of ‘historical criticism’ continues to have some value, particularly in their call to recognise that the meaning of Scripture may go beyond the limited interpretation the Church has offered. Milbank, Jenson and others who have called into question the commitment to the Christian faith of the earliest scholars to suggest or employ something akin to historical criticism perhaps do so unfairly. These scholars often had a profound belief in the value of Scripture to the Church and sought to invigorate faith by attempting to uncover the earliest meanings of biblical texts. Theirs is an exciting call to discovery: a call to discover an authoritative alien meaning which will challenge the comfortable readings available through a purely doctrinal reading of Scripture. Whereas Theological Interpretation of Scripture often has very little to add to an ‘understanding’ of a particular text, beyond an exposition of the thoughts of the commentator, a practice of reading which attempts to articulate a reading which is contingent upon an ancient context (even without the belief that it does so neutrally) will offer a richer experience of the text viewed in its alterity. In this sense, a biblical text can be a thing in itself. It can be regarded by the reader as wrong, perhaps as hateful or bigoted. A biblical text need not be subsumed into the thoughts of the reader, always to be agreed with, purely because it is regarded as assent-demanding, sacred Scripture. In Theological Interpretation of Scripture, very few scholars wish to disagree with Scripture and theological hermeneutics are the means by which assent is made possible. Yet this manner of reading, whilst it may be extremely creative and stimulating hermeneutically, is unlikely, as has been argued, to stimulate Christian Theology with new insights into texts beyond those which emerge from the theology already held by the reader before he or she approaches the text. It is worth noting that the stagnated sectarianism of the Church’s theological interpretation of Scripture appears to be the principal theological danger J. P. Gabler intended to address in his important 1787 address De justo discrimine theologiae biblicae et dogmaticae regundisque recte utriusque finibus. ⁴⁷⁸ Gabler draws a distinction here between ‘dogmatic theology’ (which is subtle, changeable and contingent upon individual theologians) and the idealistic promise of ‘biblical

 John Sandys-Wunsch and Laurence Eldridge, ‘J. P. Gabler and the Distinction between Biblical and Dogmatic Theology: Translation, Commentary and Discussion of his Originality,’ SJT 33:2 (1980), pp. 133 – 158.

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theology’ (a relatively changeless, historical discipline).⁴⁷⁹ He contends that ‘biblical theology’ can protect the Christian church from the whims of particular theologians and foster a unity amongst Christians.⁴⁸⁰ The task of biblical scholarship is to articulate a ‘biblical theology’ free from personal prejudice and confessional commitments, free from the accumulated meanings of tradition.⁴⁸¹ To achieve this, scholars must decide which ideas in the Bible were intended by their authors to be understood as having divine authority, rather than merely representing an author’s own opinion. Thus, as soon as all these things have been properly observed and carefully arranged, at last a clear sacred Scripture will be selected with scarcely any doubtful readings, made up of passages which are appropriate to the Christian religion of all times. These passages will show with unambiguous words the form of faith that is truly divine; the dicta classica properly so called, which can then be laid out as the fundamental basis for a more subtle dogmatic scrutiny. For only from these methods can those certain and undoubted universal ideas be singled out, those ideas which alone are useful in dogmatic theology.⁴⁸²

Of course, the history of historical-critical scholarship has not witnessed the development of such a universal ‘biblical theology’: far from it. Moreover, the committed nature of any kind of scholarship and the committed nature of historical

 ‘Biblical theology’ is largely understood by Gabler to consist of the investigation of biblical authors, whom he admits demonstrate themselves a significant variety of theologies and languages (ibid., pp. 139 – 141). This appears to be a similar understanding to that of Krister Stendahl, Meanings: The Bible as Document and as Guide (Philadelphia: Fortress, 1984), pp. 11– 16 who posits a firm distinction between the historical task of ‘biblical theology’ and Theology’s quest for contemporary meaning.  This hope for historical criticism still resonates with many scholars. Eg. Raymond E. Brown, The Critical Meaning of the Bible: How a Modern Reading of the Bible Challenges Christians, the Church and the Churches (New York: Paulist Press, 1981), p. 107. ‘Biblical studies have played an enormously important role in furthering the ecumenical movement as Protestant and Catholic scholars come to increasing agreement on the literal meaning of the Scriptures’ and Fitzmyer, The Interpretation of Scripture, p. 73. This theological optimism related to historical criticism is addressed critically in Adam, ‘Docetism, Käsemann, and Christology,’ pp. 398 – 399.  Gabler, ‘Distinction’, p. 140. Cf. William Wrede, ‘The Task and Methods of ‘New Testament Theology,’ in The Nature of New Testament Theology: The Contribution of William Wrede and Adolf Schlatter (ed. Robert Morgan; London: SCM, 1973), pp. 68 – 69. ‘It is self-evident that somehow a historical development of the ideas of the New Testament has to be demonstrated, and also that one must try to present these ideas not in line with a dogmatic scheme which is alien to the biblical writers, but according to their own points of view.’ See also Benjamin Jowett, ‘On the Interpretation of Scripture,’ in Essays and Reviews (London: Longmans, Green & Co., 1869), pp. 399 – 401 and 444 whose frustration at the limitations of doctrinal reading is evident.  Gabler, ‘Distinction’, p. 143.

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criticism in particular have been widely accepted. Yet it is still possible for historical scholarship to aim to articulate the alien voice of a biblical text, a voice which speaks from that text’s earliest known context. Whilst the philosophical and theological commitments of scholars should not be obscured, it is possible for certain readings of a text to be recognised as anachronistic. Without this element, biblical scholarship is likely to become a tiresome repetition of Christian doctrine, expressed in language taken from Scripture, or else it will simply provide reflection upon contemporary issues, yielding theological fruit already held by the scholar.⁴⁸³ Biblical scholarship could easily become simply a means of proving theological notions already believed.⁴⁸⁴ Likewise, without

 Cf. Möller, ‘Renewing Historical Criticism,’ p. 163. ‘With objective interpretation having been branded an illusion, proponents of postmodern strategies now argue that the reader must be given pride of place in the interpretive process. If objectivity is not within our reach, then we, as readers, might as well take over and use the text as a playing field in which we can romp to our hearts’ desire.’ Of course, it could be argued that that is all readers have ever done, even at the height of historical criticism’s popularity.  This is seen already to a certain extent in the proliferation of Theological Interpretation of Scripture studies undertaken to demonstrate that homosexual sexual activity is compatible with a life of Christian discipleship. The best example is possibly that of Dale B. Martin, Sex and the Single Savior: Gender and Sexuality in Biblical Interpretation (Louisville: WJK Press, 2006). In light of the discussion above, it is interesting to note Martin’s initial premise on ‘textual agency’. ‘I have tried to expose the complications of biblical interpretation in order to shine light on the agency of human interpreters and to insist that the “text itself” does not exercise its own “agency” in its own interpretation’ (p. 1). Cf. Fowl, Engaging Scripture, pp. 119 – 126, Christopher Rowland and Jonathan Roberts, The Bible for Sinners: Interpretation in the Present Time (London: SPCK, 2008), pp. 13 – 29 and Richard A. Burridge, Imitating Jesus: An Inclusive Approach to New Testament Ethics (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2007). These works bear a significant degree of resemblance to each other through a common rejection of historical criticism, determinacy, intentionalism and their positive use of a Christological hermeneutic focused upon the social behaviour of Jesus (Burridge is an exception to the rejection of historical criticism, since his work is primarily based upon an historical and literary insight concerning the genre of the Gospels, though the extent to which Burridge is sensitive to detail and difference in the New Testament literature he discusses is questioned by Richard B. Hays, ‘Response to Richard Burridge, Imitating Jesus,’ SJT 63:3 (2010), pp. 332– 333 whilst Francis Watson, ‘Can the Historical Jesus Teach Ethics? In Response to Richard Burridge, Imitating Jesus,’ SJT 63:3 (2010), p. 339 questions the very idea of basing ethics on a supposedly ‘uninterpreted’ historical Jesus). For a more nuanced example employing a canonical approach, see Seitz, Word Without End, pp. 263 – 275. Gordon, ‘A Warranted Version of Historical Biblical Criticism?’ p. 83 argues that theological interpretation ‘brackets out issues from discussion. In this case it is not, of course, the exclusion of what is deemed to be historically inaccessible, but what is deemed to be theologically inadmissible.’ This is particularly relevant to the discussion here, where, for a number of readers, a ‘homophobic’ reading of Scripture is utterly inadmissible, regardless of whether the texts were written as an expression of a ‘homophobic’ attitude.

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a significant historical element, biblical scholarship could involve less rigorous and detailed analysis of biblical texts.⁴⁸⁵ If this were the case, its ability to stimulate systematic theology would be severely curtailed. Many more recent biblical scholars have also articulated the supreme benefit of historical study of a text’s origins. Raymond Brown, writing to encourage Roman Catholic scholars and lay-people to continue to employ the historicalcritical method, argues that the method gives expression to the alien human element in the development of a scriptural text which is an essential part of understanding that text as the word of God.⁴⁸⁶ Historical criticism enables Scripture to present an uncomfortable challenge to the Church when an historical ‘what the text meant’ is articulated, a meaning which undermines comfortable traditional readings. For Brown, Scripture exists to confront the people of God and historical criticism enables it to do this. The word “inter-pretation” itself furnishes a clue to the reality: every interpretation requires from the interpreter an “inter,” a going into the middle, a being with. Pure objectivity is an absurd abstraction. One does not come to know by standing apart uninvolved; rather involvement is the antecedent condition of knowing. The only question is how to get involved in such a way that, instead of your ego shutting down the voice of the others, you achieve an inner “accord” with the reality of the past, an accord that purifies your ears for the word those others have to speak.⁴⁸⁷

In addition to this, reading a text historically is, to a certain extent, ethical in as much as it respects the alterity of the text in a unique way.⁴⁸⁸ As Paul Joyce notes, this sense of alterity is important spiritually as well as ethically.  Derek Tidball, ‘Post-War Evangelical Theology: A Generational Approach,’ EvQ 81:2 (2009), pp. 156 – 158 notes the acceptance of historical criticism by Evangelical scholars such as Richard Bauckham, John Goldingay, N. T. Wright, Gordon Wenham, Andrew Lincoln and others and suggests that with the declining popularity of historical criticism, future Evangelical scholars will be ‘less preoccupied with the text’.  Brown, Critical Meaning, pp. 43 – 44. Cf. McLean, ‘The Crisis of Historicism,’ p. 18. ‘Historical inquiry continues to serve a vital function within biblical studies in its ability to call attention to historical difference and to contribute to a strategy of resistance to all totalising discourses. The genius of historicism has been its ability to disclose the particularity of historically situated texts in all their disconcerting uniqueness. In the very experience of historical difference, we are invited to go beyond the limits of our own horizons of meaning.’  Ratzinger, ‘Biblical Interpretation in Conflict,’ p. 9.  Cf. Möller, ‘Renewing Historical Criticism,’ p. 167. Yet, Frances Young, ‘Allegory and the Ethics of Reading,’ in The Open Text: New Directions for Biblical Studies? (ed. Francis Watson; London: SCM, 1993), p. 109 notes that this ‘courtesy towards the text does not require capitulation, but a responsible reading articulates difference.’ This is also a feature of Vanhoozer, ‘Imprisoned or Free?’ p. 60 who applies the ‘Golden Rule’ of Matt 22:39 to preserve the alterity of

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There is even a spiritual dimension for me in being confronted by the ‘other’ of the text as laid bare by historical criticism. The text is not me, it is not my projection or an extension of my own psychology; rather it challenges me from beyond myself in a way that commands humility…There is moreover an ethical dimension to historical-critical reading: firm rooting of a text in its original context may help guard against ‘exploitative’ reading.⁴⁸⁹

For Joyce, the principal virtue historical-criticism demands from Christian readers of the Bible is humility: humility to respect and value the alterity of the text as well as the humility to be self-critical about Christian interpretation of texts which also belong to Judaism. But, of course, historical criticism has been criticised precisely because it fails to provide its promised objectivity in the presentation of alterity and because it fails to be humbly self-critical. The challenge for historical study in biblical scholarship is perhaps to find a means of granting access to historical alterity without the impossible demand for neutrality. Such an approach is explored by Trevor Hart. According to Hart, the historical quest for a particular ‘otherness’ in the biblical text is worthwhile insofar as it respects the essential communicative function of texts. We [as human beings] are engaged in what might be described as an endless series of bids for self-transcendence, seeking to move out beyond the apparent limits of our own particularity without abandoning or losing it, and to enter into or overlap more fully with the particularity of the other.⁴⁹⁰

This makes both writing and reading activities that seek to maintain particularity. Hart argues that when this is understood, hermeneutics which aim to disclose the deep ‘otherness’ of the text will be encouraged, hermeneutics which encourage the reader’s imagination of alien particulars of the text set within the alien world in which they originated.⁴⁹¹ However, because such hermeneutics which are sensitive to alterity demand the imagination of a real subjective situa-

the biblical author as a creator of illocutionary discourse. See also, Vanhoozer, ‘From Speech Acts to Scripture Acts,’ p. 6.  Paul Joyce, ‘Proverbs 8 in Interpretation (1): Historical Criticism and Beyond,’ in Reading Texts, Seeking Wisdom (ed. David E. Ford and Graham Stanton; London: SCM, 2003), p. 95. It must be noted, however, that Joyce’s argument that historical criticism be granted a ‘place of honour’ (p. 99) is also critical, recognising the apparent limitations of the approach.  Trevor Hart, ‘Imagination and Responsible Reading,’ in Renewing Biblical Interpretation (ed. Craig G. Bartholomew, Colin Greene and Karl Möller; Grand Rapids/Carlisle: Zondervan/ Paternoster, 2000), pp. 307– 308. Here, Hart explores the analogy of hermeneutics focused upon a written text and hermeneutics focused upon social interaction. Cf. Dunn, ‘Criteria for a Wise Reading,’ p. 43.  Ibid., pp. 316 – 317.

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tion or author (from which the text emerges as interpersonal communication), positivistic historical methods are to be avoided. Personal intuition must be combined with historical research, since knowing the text depends in some way upon appreciating the otherness of its author as a complex human being. This is not to be understood in Dilthey’s language of the reader’s ‘transposition’ of his or herself on to the author, which Hart suggests leads to a suppression of alterity.⁴⁹² Rather, readers are to imagine the author on the basis of a limited analogy upon which the ‘otherness’ of author and text can be explored. Before we can fathom the particularity of the other (logically if not temporally before) we must be able to identify the layers of shared human life which unite us to the other and which render possible the movement of imagination from the familiar to the unfamiliar by way of analogical steps. We do not, to be sure, discover our own particularity in the other; but, knowing the other to be human, we move beyond her utterance by taking it as communicating some pattern (or part of a pattern) identifiable as or analogous to something in the structure of our own humanity.⁴⁹³

However, as Hart would recognise,⁴⁹⁴ this provides no guarantee of appropriate distanciation, the preservation of the text’s alterity, just as the historical-critical

 Ibid., p. 324.  Ibid. A similar use of analogy is present in historical criticism, which Milbank would argue functions to explain the past in the functionalist terms of post-enlightenment secularity. Yet, whilst analogy allows the past to be explained in terms of the present in historical criticism it fails to prevent the text from appearing so radically different from the present that it is rendered theologically useless. (Cf. Adam, Faithful Interpretation, pp. 28 – 29) Analogy is, as has been argued, a characteristic of the ‘historical’ exegetical arguments of the New Testament, where analogy is created by recognising the common occupation of salvation history of both author and reader. Hart’s ‘imaginative’ analogy as simply the basis of exploration of otherness is a helpfully tentative way to bring together the dual aims of meaning and distanciation in hermeneutics. Nicholas Wolterstorff, ‘A Response to Trevor Hart,’ in Renewing Biblical Interpretation (ed. Craig G. Bartholomew, Colin Greene and Karl Möller; Grand Rapids/Carlisle: Zondervan/ Paternoster, 2000), pp. 336 – 341 agrees with Hart’s emphasis on imagination as a stimulant for some kind of historical alterity but adds to Hart’s approach another act of imagination, prompted by the problem that (in Speech-Act Theory terms) each locution of the author does not easily correspond to a single illocutionary act, but may suggest a variety of illocutionary possibilities. Here the role of an imaginative ‘phronesis’ is essential in order to identify an appropriate illocutionary function for the words of the text.  Ibid., p. 333. ‘Such a reading of the passage involves an imaginative construction of context which reads ‘between the lines’. For some this will render it problematic. But…some reading between the lines or filling in of the gaps is involved in all interpretation.’ Cf. Walter Bruggemann, ‘A First Retrospect on the Consultation,’ in Renewing Biblical Interpretation (ed. Craig G. Bartholomew, Colin Greene and Karl Möller; Grand Rapids/Carlisle: Zondervan/ Paternoster, 2000), p. 345.

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method could only explain the biblical text in terms of modernity. The problem is that no possible method can protect the text from the reader’s impositions: there is no safe hermeneutic. Yet historical study can still be a means to providing a greater sense of alterity than might be found in the majority of Theological Interpretation of Scripture, which openly affirms the pre-eminence of the reader or reading community in biblical interpretation.⁴⁹⁵ A commitment to historical study as part of biblical exegesis is a commitment to looking for meaning elsewhere, beyond the reader’s concerns, to the past upon which the text is thought to be contingent. Whilst this does not guarantee protection against eisegetical reading, it does allow for a greater and more varied collection of insights to be brought into the interpretation of a particular piece of Scripture.⁴⁹⁶ So, for Barton, the role of biblical criticism is to establish, as far as possible, the alien and historical ‘plain sense’ of a biblical text.⁴⁹⁷ This is not in itself the whole act of interpretation but forms the basis of it. Readers are then able to ‘evaluate’ the theological (or ethical, or historical…) significance of the text and should also be free to reject the text entirely if they disagree with it. An exegetical practice which aims to articulate a meaning which the reader may not agree with (whilst recognising that the reader will never be neutral) has the potential to be a great deal more intellectually honest than a practice which demands that the reader always agrees with the text because it is sacred Scripture. For Christians, the former practice permits the biblical text to stand over against the reader in much more challenging, and therefore theologically stimulating, ways. However, if historical study must be reconfigured to serve as a decisive element within theological hermeneutics, so too must theological hermeneutics adjust to reflect the necessary limitations which historical study imposes upon interpretation. If historical study is to be taken seriously in Theological Interpretation of Scripture, it must be recognised that Christian theology cannot be systematic in any strict sense. When scriptural texts are discussed in terms of their contingency upon the situations from which they emerged, their alterity is

 Robert Morgan, ‘Jesus Christ, the Wisdom of God,’ in Reading Texts, Seeking Wisdom (ed. David F. Ford and Graham Stanton; London: SCM, 2003), p. 29 notes that this is particularly the case when scholarship seeks authorial intention. Morgan (p. 25) also takes issue with whether or not such scholarship needs to register its particular commitments. He points out that biblical scholarship undertaken by an atheist may still be read as theology by a Christian reader for whom the Bible is Scripture.  As Gordon, ‘A Warranted Version of Historical Biblical Criticism?’ p. 85 notes, historical criticism ‘can act as a corrective against easy, traditional assumptions about the nature of the biblical text and its composition.’  Barton, Biblical Criticism, p. 160.

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emphasised. As Jeanrond notes, this is a problem for any theology which attempts to provide a systematic account of theology derived from Scripture.⁴⁹⁸ Yet there is also a manner in which historical study might be integrated with one of the principal reading strategies of theological interpretation. Readers representing the Theological Interpretation of Scripture school place significant emphasis upon reading Scripture with a rule of faith as an hermeneutical key. The rule of faith ensures that the text will always relate in some way to the theological concerns of the reader and, whilst this is perhaps rightly criticised as eisegetical, this is a significant benefit. The analysis of the New Testament’s exegetical arguments featuring some awareness of Scripture’s contingency upon the supposed historical situations from which particular texts originate, could perhaps contribute to a different understanding of the ‘rule of faith’ which does greater justice to historical contingency. Salvation history, in the New Testament, allows those assumed to be biblical authors to feature in exegetical arguments to limit and define meaning from a text. The biblical author is the rule of faith, functioning in much the same way as a doctrinal rule of faith. Yet the author stands within the reader’s history. This allows the text to be read sympathetically and in ways which do not appear remote from the reader’s concerns.

4.3 Excursus: A theological approach to historical hermeneutics in practice It has not been the purpose of this chapter to recommend a new model of historical exegesis to replace historical criticism; rather it has sought to assert the continuing value of interpreting biblical texts by referring them back to the historical contexts in which they were authored or redacted. However, this plea for a renewed theological use of history in hermeneutics begs the question of how this might appear in practice. Would it necessarily lead to different exegetical techniques and different conclusions when compared with historical criticism? Needless to say, there is no clear answer to this question. The primary challenge to historical criticism which this study permits and attempts to address relates to the philosophical and theological assumptions of the approach. It is clear that certain features of historical criticism (which, of course, is a diverse collection of approaches and interests) must be significantly reconsidered in the light of this philosophical and theological challenge. For example, the traditional criteria for assessing the historicity of Historical Jesus material, as used by the Jesus

 Jeanrond, ‘After Hermeneutics,’ p. 97.

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Seminar, are incompatible with a theological account of history and provide perhaps the least ambiguous example of Enlightenment prejudice against Theology in Biblical Studies. However, when it comes to interpreting particular passages there is a wide variety of possible outcomes. Consider, for example, Luke 10:25 – 37: Jesus’ encounter with a teacher of the law and his subsequent telling of the story of the Good Samaritan. How might this be read theologically as a contingent product of an historical process? One might begin, as any reader of this Gospel would who has not approached this particular passage outside of its literary context, by having in mind what the author has said about his work. One might be aware of two particular claims made by the author which may help interpret this passage. Firstly, the author is not himself a witness of the events in the life of Jesus he is describing but has constructed his work upon material which παρέδοσαν ἡμῖν οἱ ἀπ’ ἀρχῆς αὐτόπται καὶ ὑπηρέται γενόμενοι τοῦ λόγου (Lk 1:2).⁴⁹⁹ Furthermore, the author has described his work as an ἀκριβῶς καθεξῆς (1:3), a work which aims to have some sort of narrative coherence, a work which is more than simply a collection of material gathered from others.⁵⁰⁰ These statements of the author’s intent, detailing his understanding of what his text is, are derived from the text itself and are not so much the product of abstract theorising of the kind of which one might accuse historical criticism. However, the exegetical approaches one might then choose to advance from these statements could bear a striking resemblance to form criticism and perhaps narrative criticism. Since the author admits to arranging his material in such a way as to create an ordered account of the life of Jesus, one might wish to read the account of the lawyer’s question and Jesus’ visit to the home of Mary and Martha as related. Since the author admits his debt to sources other than his own recollections, one might wish to read this passage as a reinterpretation of Mk 10:17– 27 which bears a considerable structural similarity to it.⁵⁰¹ If one then asks how

 Alexander, Preface to Luke’s Gospel, pp. 118 – 119 ‘In scientific prefaces, a common form of guarantee for the author or his material is the assertion that he has been in personal contact with authentic tradition. Originality is positively eschewed, and even where the author is following written sources, he uses the language of ‘tradition’.  Michael D. Goulder, Luke: A New Paradigm. Vol. I (JSNTSup 20; Sheffield: Sheffield Academic Press, 1989), pp. 199 – 200 suggests that this phrase refers to Luke’s intention to give order to Markan material, though this is not to be understood as providing correct chronological order. Cf. Alexander, Preface to Luke’s Gospel, p. 136 ‘If any contrast is implied [between Luke and his predecessors], it is worth remembering that his predecessors had produced written accounts…; the contrast may simply be between the shape of any written Gospel and that of the underlying tradition.’  A greater degree of similarity than Mk 12:28 – 34, in fact.

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the story of the Good Samaritan is to be understood theologically, these extrapolations from text-based authorial intention raise some intriguing possibilities. It is common to interpret the story of the Good Samaritan as providing an image of exemplary ethical action which Jesus urges the lawyer (and readers of the text) to emulate. However, if one considers Jesus’ visit to Mary and Martha to relate to this story a different interpretation emerges, one which views the whole of Lk 10:25 – 42 as engaging with the lawyer’s question, τί ποιήσας ζωὴν αἰώνιον κληρονομήσω;⁵⁰² Jesus initially responds by citing Scripture which the lawyer claims to have kept. Jesus’ telling of the story of the Good Samaritan informs the lawyer that he has not. The impact of the story upon the lawyer is not noted, but it seems likely that the author intends it to be understood negatively (a conclusion made plausible by the ‘form-critical’ comparison below). The Good Samaritan suggests that it is more-or-less impossible to keep the law’s command to love one’s neighbour. This casts doubt upon whether lawyer and reader have done what is necessary to inherit eternal life. If this is the case, the story of the Good Samaritan functions in much the same way as law does in Rom 3:19 – 20, ἵνα πᾶν στόμα φραγῇ. With this in mind, the author takes his readers to the home of Mary and Martha to answer the lawyer’s question with the words ἑνὸς δέ ἐστιν χρεία Μαριὰμ γὰρ τὴν ἀγαθὴν μερίδα ἐξελέξατο ἥτις οὐκ ἀφαιρεθήσεται αὐτῆς.⁵⁰³ What must I do to inherit eternal life? Only one thing is necessary: the attentiveness of Mary to the words of Jesus. This reading becomes more plausible when one considers the author’s dependence upon material provided by others which he works into an ordered narrative. With this in mind, it is perhaps worth comparing Lk 10:25 – 42 with Mk

 These two scenarios have been read in the light of one another in John Nolland, Luke 9:21 – 18:34 (Word Books: Dallas. 1993), p. 600 who writes that ‘the preceding parable [the Good Samaritan] has focussed on the person-to-person aspect of God’s requirement of love. The present episode [Martha and Mary] is concerned with the vertical aspect of love of God, which shows itself in attentiveness to the word of God as brought by Jesus.’ Likewise, Dennis M. Sweetland, ‘The Good Samaritan and Martha and Mary,’ BibTo 21 (1987), pp. 325 – 30 treats the two episodes as emphasising the need for both works and attentive listening to God. The problem with these two attempts to read the two episodes in the light of one another is that both readings fail to take notice of the exclusive superiority of Mary’s choice to listen over Martha’s choice to work, seen in Jesus’ words in vv.41– 42. If the two episodes are to be read together, it is a mistake to assume that each asserts the equal importance of either service towards others or attentiveness to Jesus. The Mary and Martha episode positively denies such a conclusion.  Whilst there is a significant degree of textual uncertainty regarding this sentence, the phrase ἑνὸς δέ ἐστιν χρεία which is crucial for this interpretation is well attested and, as C. F. Evans, Saint Luke (London: SCM, 1990), p. 473 notes, is probably authentic, reflecting as it does the ‘radical tone’ of Lk 18:22.

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10:17– 31: Jesus’ response to a rich young man who asks the same question as the lawyer in Lk 10, τί ποιήσας ζωὴν αἰώνιον κληρονομήσω/τί ποιήσω ἵνα ζωὴν αἰώνιον κληρονομήσω; There is a clear formal similarity between these two passages which might suggest that Lk 10:25 – 42 is an interpretation of Mk 10:17– 31 in addition to Luke’s own more-or-less exact replication of that pericope in Lk 18:18 – 23. The same question in each case (comparing Lk 10:25 – 42 and Mk 10:17– 31) is initially addressed by Jesus who provides or invites a citation of Scripture. In each case, the enquirer responds indicating that the citation does not pose a problem to his chances of inheriting eternal life. In Mk 10:21, Jesus responds to the enquirer’s self-assurance by indicating that the law demands yet more if eternal life is to be inherited. At this, the enquirer leaves Jesus feeling dismayed. The pericope ends with Jesus affirming that salvation, or the inheritance of eternal life, is not something which can be achieved by humankind, but which is the gift of God. If Luke is creating an ordered narrative out of material originating with others as he claims to, perhaps the story of the Good Samaritan occupies the place of Jesus’ invitation to the Rich Young Man, asking him to sell his possessions. If this is so, the Good Samaritan story reflects the means by which the enquirer understands that he has not fulfilled the law and so is not worthy to inherit eternal life. Likewise, in each passage, the Gospel readers are informed that eternal life is given by God and cannot be earned, either by the labours of Martha and the Good Samaritan whom she reflects, or the self-sacrifice of Peter in Mk 10:28. Luke’s acknowledged debt to other sources could provide the means to reading the text in this way. This reading of Lk 10:25 – 42 is historical insofar as it assumes that the text is contingent upon a particular historical author. Yet caution is exercised regarding the extent to which the aims and beliefs of this author can be formulated apart from the text. As Vanhoozer and Wolterstorff argue, authorial intention is fallacious when it is exceeds the indications of intention within the text itself. Because of this, ideas about Luke’s intentions as an author are restricted to what may be understood from Lk 1:1– 4 (readers of John’s Gospel may begin with a similar study of John 20:30 – 31). Whilst the reading attempts to begin from an understanding of the text as contingent upon an historical author, it is also unashamedly theological.⁵⁰⁴ Luke wrote to address Theophilus, a reader whom he

 One might contend that limiting theology to the nature and function of the resulting interpretation is not enough. Is the text understood theologically as something inspired by God? Is the act of reading itself theological, a manner of reading which is inspired by God? This interpretation of the Good Samaritan has sought to emulate something of the historical exegetical strategies discussed above, strategies which can only be regarded as providing theological interpretation. Whilst the Pentecost speech understands Ps 16 as prophecy, it does so only

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knew, whilst at the same time addressing many others he did not know.⁵⁰⁵ Still, his aim was to inform them of the events of Jesus’ life, death and resurrection understood as theological τῶν πεπληροφορημένων.⁵⁰⁶ He wrote for theological ends not restricted to Theophilus: ἵνα ἐπιγνῷς περὶ ὧν κατηχήθης λόγων τὴν ἀσφάλειαν. If Luke did not conceive of his aim as something limited to a particular audience, a reading which attempts to shape interpretation of his work in reference to his intentions will not avoid expressing the theological conclusions readers are encouraged by the author to draw from the text. In this case, the theological interpretation addresses the question posed to Jesus (a question which, one might add, has not been rendered meaningless by the passage of time since Luke’s writing) and suggests that the story of the Good Samaritan not only demonstrates the nature of full obedience to the law, but also, in doing so, highlights humankind’s inability to act in the way the law demands of those who wish to inherit eternal life. Because of this, Luke leads his readers to the home of Mary and Martha where the one thing necessary for eternal life is made plain.

Conclusion In 1964 the Pontifical Biblical Institute advised Roman Catholic biblical scholars to employ the various methods of historical criticism only with extreme caution, noting that such methods are indebted to various philosophies which differ significantly from traditional Christian accounts of divine immanence and, in particular, scriptural inspiration. In the 21st Century, one might now regard this theological critique of historical criticism as trailblazing. What perhaps seemed to many in the 1960 s to be a narrow conservatism, now reflects a significant scholarly voice uniting ‘liberal’-Catholics, like John Milbank and Stephen Fowl with evangelicals, such as Kevin Vanhoozer and Daniel Treier. In the 1960 s, though historical criticism had been practised in some form for over 100 years, the Pon-

by means of an historical argument relating to the identity of its author. Likewise, whilst the reading of Scripture is undoubtedly understood as a sacred practice in the New Testament, the cases in which an historical argument is used to explicate a text do not claim any special inspiration for the act of interpretation, as is the case in forms of charismatic exegesis.  Alexander, Preface to Luke’s Gospel, p. 187.  Marshall, Luke, p. 41 ‘The thought is of events brought to completion, namely the events leading to salvation; the passive form suggests that these are divine acts which God himself promised and has now fully brought to pass, and the use of the perfect indicates that they are seen as a finished series in past time.’ Cf. Robert Maddox, The Purpose of Luke-Acts (Edinburgh: T. & T. Clark, 1982), p. 183 and Flender, Theologian of Redemptive History, p. 64.

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tifical Biblical Institute looked upon it as a threatening new development. Now, historical criticism is viewed as a debilitating traditional practice, a collection of methods belonging to the past which appear naïve from the perspective of postmodernity. Yet the issue with historical criticism has remained the same: it is simply not Christian insofar as it does not develop out of a Christian worldview with any historical pedigree. However, certain distinctive features of historical criticism, such as its clear notion of a biblical text’s contingency upon the historical process through which it came to be, and, in particular, its interest in authorial intent, ought to have a continued place within biblical hermeneutics. It has been shown that these features of historical criticism are not dependent upon Enlightenment or Romantic philosophies. They simply cannot be dismissed with the theological critique employed against historical criticism. This is because there is reasonable evidence to suggest that certain New Testament writers conceived of Scripture as contingent upon the authors who wrote them or the time periods within which they were written. Moreover, it appears that these New Testament authors were departing from exegetical convention to interpret Scripture on the basis of this contingency. Rather than assuming that such reasoning is the result of an innate rational tendency to treat texts in such a way, it appears most likely that this innovation in Scriptural interpretation is dependent upon primitive Christian Heilsgeschichten, which typically appear alongside it. However, there remains that tantalizing possibility that such innovation can be traced back to the teaching of Jesus himself, as represented in the Davidssohnfrage. If the argument of chapters 1– 4 is correct, the assumption that a scriptural text is contingent upon history both belongs to theological worldviews (those of primitive Christianity), and indeed is distinctly Christian. This study has attempted to define a type of scriptural hermeneutic employed in certain New Testament texts which articulates the theological meaning of a piece of Scripture with reference to the historical context out of which that piece of Scripture originated. This type of interpretation views biblical texts as contingent upon the historical circumstances (author or setting in time) in which they came to be. Through repeated comparison with exegetical literature usually considered to have influenced the exegetical practice of the New Testament, it has been argued that this type of ‘historical’ hermeneutic as used in the New Testament is innovative and dependent upon certain specific early Christian traditions. The view of texts as historically contingent invites comparison with historical criticism which has shared this assumption. Because of this, the New Testament examples of the exegetical use of history have been used to engage in contemporary discussions concerning the place of historical criticism

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within recent Christian theology which demonstrates a predominantly ‘theological’ interest in the Bible. Chapter one explored the interpretation of Scripture in the Epistle to the Hebrews, focusing particularly upon Hebrews 4:6 – 11 and 7:11– 19. In Hebrews 3 – 4, a variety of interpretive methods are employed to explain Ps 95:8 – 11 which demonstrate a particular affinity with rabbinic exegetical techniques. However, it is the final (and supposedly decisive) argument used in 4:6 – 11 which is of significance to this study. The author of Hebrews attempts to define the referent of κατάπαυσίν μου by discussing the time from which Ps 95 originated. The author contends that the possibility of entering God’s rest must be real for his audience, since Ps 95 was written ἐν Δαυὶδ λέγων μετὰ τοσοῦτον χρόνον (and promising rest) after the entry of the people into the Promised Land. This historical reasoning is clearly apparent in v.8 where μετὰ is employed again to evoke an historical contrast. Hence the author is able to conclude in v.9 that entry into God’s rest is a possibility for his audience. This conclusion has been reached by the author’s reference to the assumed Davidic authorship of the psalm and the historical location of David after Joshua’s entry into the land. Likewise, in Hebrews 7, whilst there are features of the author’s treatment of Ps 110:4 which bear some resemblance to Philo in Leg. All. as well as 11QMelch, the ultimately decisive argument used to show that Ps 110:4 supports the notion of a Melchizedekian priesthood as a replacement of the Levitical priesthood is an historical one. This argument is posited in its most complex form in v.11, but is repeated in vv.18 – 19 and 28 in simpler forms. The author assumes a date of origin for Ps 110:4 that is after the introduction of the Levitical priesthood. He suggests in v.11 that this date of origin is problematic for the Levitical priesthood: εἰ μὲν οὖν τελείωσις διὰ τῆς Λευιτικῆς ἱερωςύνης ἦν…τίς ἔτι χρεία κατὰ τὴν τάξιν Μελχισέδεκ ἕτερον ἀνίστασθαι ἱερέα…; Here, ἔτι is used to create an historical problem, ‘why was there still the need..?’ History is employed here to situate two texts in relation to each other. The older text is seen to be superseded by the more recent. This is quite a different use of history from Heb 4:6 – 11. The similarity resides in the assumption that knowledge concerning the text’s time of origin may be employed exegetically. With this assumption, the author of Hebrews leaves behind the dominant modes of exegetical reasoning seen in Philo, Rabbinic literature and the Dead Sea Scrolls. Hebrews’ interest in the exegetical use of history probably stems from its significant interest in Heilsgeschichte. The Heilsgeschichte of Hebrews (seen most clearly, perhaps, in Heb 11) encourages the audience to see itself as standing in continuity with the past, from which its identity as the people of God is articulated. This gives to the past a certain status and authority and promotes the discussion of scriptural texts in relation to their origins in the past.

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Chapter two discussed the interpretation of Scripture in the Luke-Acts with particular attention given to Acts 2:25 – 36 and 13:35 – 37. These two passages appear to depart from the dominant rabbinic and eschatological exegetical practices of Luke-Acts by seeking to explain the meaning of scriptural texts as contingent upon their historical author. Acts 2:25 – 36, a portion of the Pentecost speech, explains both Pss 16:8 – 11 and 110:1 in relation to David, their assumed author. Acts 2:29 – 31 represents the most sophisticated argument of this type. The lemma, having been introduced as spoken by David is understood not to be about David (possibly undermining a popular assumption) on the basis of certain known historical facts about the life of David. The psalm’s vision of incorruptible life in the presence of God cannot refer to David’s fortunes, for ‘he died and was buried and his tomb is with us to this day.’ David’s identity is used here initially to deny a certain interpretation of the text, but it is used again straightaway to define who the text might actually refer to. Whilst Ps 16:8 – 11 cannot be about David because of what happened to David, the identity of David does help to clarify to whom it does refer, because David was a prophet: προφήτης οὖν ὑπάρχων…προϊδὼν ἐλάλησεν περὶ τῆς ἀναστάσεως τοῦ Χριστοῦ. The nature and referent of the citation are both seen to be contingent upon the identity of its historical author. The ‘negative’ use of the author’s identity is used again in v.34 to introduce Ps 110:1 as another prophetic text which cannot refer to David. It is also used in 13:35 – 37 (a portion of the Pisidian Antioch speech), again with Ps 16:10, to assert that this text cannot refer to David. The exegetical use of the assumed historical author in Acts also lacks clear parallels in the exegetical literature typically thought to have influenced exegetical practice in Luke-Acts. Like Hebrews, Luke-Acts displays a significant interest in Heilsgeschichte which perhaps explains its use of an ‘historical’ hermeneutic. The distinctive way in which history is seen to tend towards a messianic climax, and the tendency for Scripture to be utilized as ‘proof from prophecy’, encourages the ‘historical’ arguments which assert David’s identity as a prophet whose psalms are prophecies. Yet the similarity of the two interpretations of Ps 16 suggest that the ‘historical’ arguments of Acts may be the result of a textual tradition or a testimonia collection featuring Ps 16 and a Christological explanation featuring Davidic authorship. This is all the more probable when one considers that possibly the earliest example of ‘historical’ reasoning featuring an assumed author is a discussion of Ps 110:1, a text also discussed in the Pentecost speech. It is possible, therefore, that the exegetical use of history in Luke-Acts is not a Lukan initiative, but the reflection of an exegetical source closely connected with Pss 16:8 – 11 and 110:1. Chapter three sought to add some substance to this postulated source for the ‘historical’ hermeneutics of Luke-Acts by exploring the use of Ps 110:1 in the Da-

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vidssohnfrage in the Synoptic Gospels. This is another example of a text interpreted on the basis of assumptions about its Davidic authorship. In each case, Jesus attempts to question the identity of the Messiah as the Son/son of David by citing Ps 110:1 and asking some form of the question, ‘if David calls [the Messiah] Lord, how can he be his son?’ Jesus’ question functions upon the assumption that David is the author of the psalm. When the psalm is understood as coming from the lips of David (and understood to be about the Messiah), a simple notion of the Messiah as Son/son of David becomes problematic. Again, the scriptural text is understood to be contingent upon its historical author and so is explained with reference to that author. So, how does this example of ‘historical’ exegesis relate to the other examples already discussed? It could be that the Davidssohnfrage represents the first and original use of an historical argument of this sort in early Christianity. The elusive nature of the Davidssohnfrage, seen through the lack of scholarly consensus regarding its theological purpose, represents one of the most convincing arguments for the pericope’s authenticity. It seems implausible that the early Church could have invented so confusing a tradition about the teaching of Jesus. Whilst this argument very much represents the traditional criteria for historical-Jesus research which might well be questioned by many scholars, there are also significant reasons for regarding the pericope as authentic on the basis of more recent studies of memory and Jesus traditions. There is a very substantial basis for regarding the Davidssohnfrage as originating in some manner with the teaching of the historical Jesus and it may well be that this pericope forms the basis of subsequent similar ‘historical’ arguments. The final chapter explored the extent to which the distinctive exegetical uses of history discussed in chapters one to three might relate to contemporary debates over the nature of biblical hermeneutics. These debates are wide ranging and the chapter focused particularly on the debate in the Theological Interpretation of Scripture school. Theologians who sympathise with this popular form of theological interpretation have, for the most part, rejected discussing the theological implications of scriptural texts in terms which assume the historical contingency of those texts. This is largely due to the common rejection of the historical-critical method for philosophical and theological reasons related to its nature and assumptions. Instead, it has been popular to attempt to assert a purely theological approach to biblical hermeneutics. However, such theological hermeneutics frequently place little value upon the role of historical study of a text’s origins. Instead, texts are principally read in the light of traditional readings, a rule of faith or according to the theological and existential needs of a particular reading community. Yet the idea of reading a text as contingent upon the context from which it originated or found its final form is not alien to the concerns and assumptions of Christian theology, nor does it preclude theological readings of

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biblical texts. The manner in which historical reasoning is employed in the New Testament suggests helpful ways of re-appropriating the historical study of a text’s origins as part of biblical hermeneutics in Theology. The contingency of the text upon its situation does not need to separate the text from contemporary readers (as it often does in in historical-critical studies) because a Christian approach to history, as seen in Hebrews and Luke-Acts, attempts to encourage the contemporary Christian to sympathize and identify with the past. The Heilsgeschichten to which this hermeneutic seems to relate most naturally are narratives, and texts are explained in terms of their place within such narratives. This resonates deeply with the emphasis upon theological narrative in the contemporary post-liberal theology in which much of the discussion of theological hermeneutics takes place. Yet whilst historical study need not necessarily alienate the reader from the text, it does enable a sense of the text’s alterity, a sense that it cannot simply be dissolved into the assumptions and theological aims of the contemporary reader. This was the radical aim of Spinoza: to free biblical interpretation from the stifling controls of the Church’s theological interpretation. Historical study can bring a greater depth to the contemporary reader’s appreciation of the Bible. The study ended with the recommendation that historical scholarship remains a permanent feature of biblical hermeneutics and with a brief exploration of a theological approach to historical hermeneutics focussed upon a particular biblical passage. It is to be hoped that biblical scholars and other theologians continue to investigate the historical origins of biblical texts, so as to enable them to speak with the voice of alterity, a voice which cannot be so easily dissolved into that of the interpreter. Moreover, it is to be hoped that the wider Christian community, the Church, might continue or resume an interest in this aspect of biblical interpretation and so stand in continuity with the exegetical practice of some of early Christianity’s finest biblical interpreters. However, two important questions remain which are of such complexity that it is not possible to do them justice here. Firstly, it has been assumed in this study that it is reasonable to expect contemporary Christians to mimic the exegetical practice of certain New Testament authors. This poses significant difficulties when one considers that historical hermeneutics as discussed in this study are an exception to the more general tendencies of New Testament authors’ exegetical practice, which can generally be described as charismatic: significantly dependent upon the authority of the interpreter whose very authority gives his interpretation credibility. To what extent, then, should contemporary Christians who desire a special theological hermeneutic look to the New Testament? And if theological readers of the Bible do choose to model their hermeneutics upon those of the New Testament, is historical exegesis as discussed here

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likely to be the primary challenge posed by the New Testament to a movement such as Theological Interpretation of Scripture? As has been noted above, the New Testament authors positively reject the polysemy which is often a distinguishing feature of Theological Interpretation of Scripture. For the most part, New Testament literature is closer to the eschatological reading of Qumran than it is to rabbinic literature in its assumption that each text has a single meaning, a meaning made plain through the dramatic events of Jesus’ life, death and resurrection. These events provide an hermeneutical lens through which exclusive access to the meaning of Scripture is granted, without which there is only ignorance. Even the historical exegetical practices examined above operate in such a way as to undermine existing interpretations which can not be tolerated. The best example of this is perhaps the treatment of Ps 16 in the Pentecost speech of Acts 2 which appears to directly undermine the type of interpretation offered in Midr. Ps 16. Does this suggest that scriptural determinacy is also a value Christian readers of the Bible as Scripture should be more familiar with? Interestingly, this determinacy is also a prominent feature of historical criticism!

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Index Old Testament/Hebrew Bible Gen 1:1 52 n. 146 1:27 94; 95 n. 254 2:2 14 – 16; 39 2:4 94; 95 n. 254 2:8 34 2:24 95 n. 254 9:1 37 11:1 – 9 49 12:1 51 n. 143 14:18 – 20 17 – 30; 33; 37 15:13 51 n. 143 22:18 51 n. 143 30:14 38 40:5 – 18 37 48:4 51 n. 143

1 Sam 13:14 70 n. 187 16 83

Ex 1:8 51 n. 143 2:14 51 n. 143 3:6 50 – 51 n. 143 4:30 38 17 37 n. 108 20:5 38 20:11 51 n. 143 21:16 38

Neh 3:16 62 n. 164

Lev 19:17 11 n. 22 19:18 118 23:29 51 n. 143 Num 14 15 n. 32 15:27 – 31 38 27:17 107 Dt 18:15 – 20 50 – 51 n. 143; 78 n. 208 24:1 – 4 94 – 95 34 35

2 Sam 5:8 110 7 123 7:8 – 29 104 n. 280 7:16 63 n. 167 15 82 16:21 37 1 Kg 22:17 107 Ezra 2:61 – 62

20

Pss 2:1 – 2 53 2:7 25; 73; 73 2:8 72 n. 192 3 82 8:2 109 n. 294 8:6 24 n. 58; 109; 126 n. 349; 127 16:8 – 11 4; 56 n. 150; 58 – 68; 79; 81; 90; 126 – 128; 187 16:9 56 n. 150; 79 – 80 16:11 64; 79 22 41 n. 122 40:6 – 8 29 n. 78; 31 72 32 n. 85 76:2 19 n. 47 89:21 70 n. 187 95:7 – 11 3; 7 n. 8; 8 – 17; 61 n. 157; 90; 127; 169; 186 95:11 21 n. 55; 37 n. 108; 43 95:8 95 n. 254 102:26 – 28 19 n. 48; 29 n. 78 110 7; 92; 172

210

Index

110:1 25 n. 63; 60 n. 156; 64 – 65; 72; 79; 93; 96 – 128; 187 110:4 3; 7 n. 8; 17 – 32; 37 n. 108; 42 – 43; 90; 122 n. 338; 123; 186 118:22 68 132 78 n. 209 132:11 63 n. 167 146:6 51 n. 143 Prov 2:19 62 n. 161 5:6 62 n. 161 Isa 6:9 50 n. 143 9:5 – 7 104 n. 280 11:1 104 n. 280; 121 n. 334 11:1 – 10 104 n. 280 25:9 80 26:19 38 42:2 50 n. 143 42:21 50 n. 143 49:6 50 n. 143 53:3 50 n. 143; 72 – 73 53:7 50 n. 143; 51 n. 144 55:11 159 58:6 94 61:1 – 2 94 66:1 50 n. 143 Jer 12:15 50 n. 141 23:5 – 8 104 n. 280 31:3 – 34 25 n. 63; 31 Ezek 10 156 – 158 Dan 2:47 114 n. 309 7:13 109; 113 n. 308; 121 n. 334; 127 Hos 11:1 167 n. 464

Joel 2:28 – 32 53; 55 – 56; 57 – 58; 60; 65 n. 173; 68 2:30 – 31 58 3:1 – 5 50 n. 143; 54; 79 Amos 5:25 – 27 50 n. 143 9:11 50 n. 141 Jon 4:2 153 Mic 5:2 104 n. 280 Hab 1:15 50 n. 143; 76 3:18 80 Zeph 1 103 n. 275 Zech 6:9 – 14 22 n. 57 Early Jewish and Christian Greek Literature 1 Clem. 32 n. 85 Apoc. Peter 109 Cher. 34 Hypoth. 34; 36 n. 99 Leg. All. 19; 33; 41 n. 122; 52 n. 146; 186; Vit. Cont. 34 Vit. Mos. 35 Plant. 34 Sib. Or. 109; Trypho. 32 n. 85; 101 n. 271 War. 83 n. 226 Semitic Literature 1 Enoch 63 n. 168; 121 – 122 n. 334 Aboth d. R. Nathan 38 b. Ber. 37 b. Naz. 37 n. 105 b. Ned. 28 n. 75 b. Pes. 38; 82 b. Sanh. 38; 110 n. 294

Index

b. Tam. 37 b. Yeb. 29 n. 78 Gen. Rab. 37; 82 n. 224; 101 n. 274 Midr. Ps. 16 62; 79; 81 – 82; 190 110 121 n. 334 Odes Sol. 64 n. 171 Sifre. Num. 38 Tg. Neof. 19 n. 47 Tg. Onq. 19 n. 47 Tg. Ps. 78; 122 n. 338 Tg. Ps.-J 19 n. 47 Tosf. Sanh. 38 Qumran 1QapGen 19 n. 47; 114 n. 309 1QpHab 35 1QS 36 n. 99; 76 4QFlor 19 n. 49; 36 n. 101; 63 n. 167; 78 n. 209; 104 n. 280 4QpNah 36 n. 103 4QpPsa 36 n. 102; 78 4QMa 36 4QMMT 77 11QMelch 19; 36; 101 n. 271; 121 n. 334; 186 11QT 35 n. 97 11QTgJob 114 n. 309 CD 20 n. 49; 36 New Testament Matt 1:1 115 2:15 167 n. 464 4:6 – 10 96 n. 256 5:32 94 7:28 – 29 129 n. 353 11:10 93 n. 248 19:2 – 9 94 19:8 95 n. 254 19:15 24 n. 58 21:14 110 21:16 109 n. 294 22:15 – 46 118 22:34 – 40 117 – 118 22:39 176 n. 488 22:41 – 46 4; 54 n. 148; 92 – 128

27:11 114 n. 310 Mark 1:2 96 n. 256 2:25 – 28 93 n. 248 7:6 96 n. 256 8:27 – 30 115; 118 10:2 – 9 95 n. 254 10:17 – 27 181 10:17 – 31 183 10:37 108 11:17 96 n. 256 12:10 93 n. 248 12:29 108 n. 291 12:35 98 n. 259 12:35 – 37 4; 92 – 128; 54 n. 148 14:27 93 n. 248; 96 n. 256 14:62 109; 119 n. 329; 121 n. 334 Luke 1:1 – 4 46 4:16 – 30 94 5:1 57 10:25 – 37 181 20:41 – 44 92 – 128 20:42 – 44 54 n. 148 22:37 93 n. 248; 108 n. 291 22:69 85 n. 231 24 86 24:27 48 n. 134; 126 24:45 126 John 4:1 – 42 130 n. 354 6:30 – 58 7 20:30 – 31 183 Acts 1:15 57 1:16 54 n. 148 1:20 50 n. 143; 52; 77 2:6 49 n. 139 2:14 57 2:14 – 21 57 – 58 2:14 – 41 45; 53 – 68 2:16 51 2:22 – 35 58 – 66

211

212

Index

2:25 51; 54 n. 148 2:25 – 28 50 n. 143 2:25 – 36 4; 45; 48; 52 2:30 49 n. 138 2:34 – 35 50 n. 143 2:36 67 – 68 2:38 – 39 67 – 68 4:25 54 n. 148 5:20 57 5:25 57 5:34 57 7:42 77 13:16 57 13:26 – 41 68 – 76 13:33 50 n. 143; 77 13:33 – 37 48; 72 – 75; 80; 127 13:34 50 n. 143; 73 13:35 50 n. 143 13:36 54 n. 148 13:36 – 37 74 – 75 13:38 – 41 75 – 76 13:40 51 n. 145 13:41 50 n. 143 13:47 50 n. 143 14:10 50 n. 141 15:16 – 17 50 n. 143 15:12 – 21 53 17:22 57 21:40 57 22:30 57 Rom 1:3 – 4 63 n. 168; 105; 106 n. 283 1:17 2 n. 4 2:13 76 n. 200 3:19 – 20 182 3:24 – 26 76 n. 200 4:6 54 n. 148 11:9 54 n. 148 1 Cor 8:11 76 n. 200 15:4 119 2 Cor 3:7 – 8

7 n. 8

Gal 2:16 76 n. 200 3:1 – 22 23 n. 58 3:11 76 n. 200 3:19 25 n. 63; 95 n. 254 3:24 76 n. 200 Eph 5:23 60 n. 155 Col 1:18 31 n. 84 2 Tim 2:8 63 n. 168; 106 n. 168 Heb 1:1 – 2 7; 28 n. 77 1:4 37 n. 104 1:10 – 12 19 n. 48 1:13 25 n. 63 2:2 – 3 25 n. 63; 37 n. 104 2:5 – 18 41 n. 122 2:6 70 n. 187 2:9 16 n. 38 2:12 41 n. 122 2:14 33 n. 87; 41 n. 122; 61 n. 157 2:17 – 18 29 n. 78 3:1 – 6 8 – 9 3:1 – 4:13 8 – 17; 54; 34 n. 94 3:7 – 11 9 – 11 3:14 – 19 11 – 12; 21; 31 4:1 – 2 12 – 13 4:3 – 5 13 – 14; 35 n. 97 4:6 – 10 3 – 4; 14 – 17; 31; 33 – 34; 37 – 39; 59; 186 4:7 31; 37 n. 104; 43; 54 n. 148 4:11 – 13 17 4:15 32 5:16 – 19 37 5:1 – 9 18 5:11 18; 42 5:6 25; 29 n. 78 5:7 – 9 29 n. 78; 33 n. 87 6:13 – 20 18 7:1 – 3 17 – 21 7:1 – 28 17 – 32

Index

7:4 – 10 21 – 22 7:11 42 – 43 7:11 – 19 22 – 32 7:22 37 n. 104 7:26 – 28 32 9:14 37 n. 104 10:1 – 4 32 10:5 – 10 29 n. 78

10:9 31 10:11 – 12 32 11 26; 186 11:32 63 n. 169 12:1 – 3 26 12:9 – 11 37 n. 104 12:28 61 n. 158

213

Keyword Index Alterity 2 n. 3; 168; 172 – 180 Christ 38 – 67; 70 – 72; 100 – 104 Dabar ha-lamed me-inyano 38 – 39 Distanciation 135 n. 364; 170 – 180 Gezerah shewah 4; 8; 13 – 14; 16; 34 n. 89; 35 n. 96; 38; 43; 80; 93 – 94 Heilsgeschichte 39 – 43; 68 – 70; 84 – 90; 169 – 172 Historical Criticism 3; 5; 129 – 149 Historical Jesus 112 – 126 Josephus 83 – 85; 46 n. 129; 89; 114 n. 309 Joshua 16 – 17; 31; 186 Land 13 – 17 Melchizedek 17 – 32 Modernity 2; 141 n. 382; 144 n. 388; 165; 171; 179; 185 Philo 4; 19; 33 – 35; 40 n. 120; 41 n. 122; 42; 43 n. 127; 52; 94 n. 252 Postliberalism 131; 189; 133 n. 357 Pragmatism 149 – 150

Priesthood 17 – 32 Proem 18 – 19; 47; 68 n. 182; 79 Prophecy – David as Prophet 4; 58 – 67; 71; 78; 83; 100 – Proof from Prophecy 72 n. 193; 85 – 89; 187 Qal wahomer 37 n. 104; 38; 43; 93 n. 248 Qumran 76 – 79; 35 – 37 Radical Orthodoxy 133 n. 358 – 359; 141 n. 382 Rest (κατάπαυσις) 8 – 17 Son of David 70 – 88; 92 – 93; 97 n. 258; 99 – 104; 104 – 122; 188 Son of Man 98; 104; 106 n. 283; 109; 113 n. 308; 125 Superscription 14 n. 31; 15; 54 n. 148; 81 – 82 Temple 14 n. 30; 26 n. 69; 61; 77; 99; 110; 122 n. 338; 123 n. 340; 124 n. 343 Testimonia 4; 14; 25 n. 63; 48 n. 134; 98; 126 – 127; 187 YHWH 24 n. 60; 40; 61 n. 157; 73; 153; 156