Friday, October 22, 2010

Tim Gombis and the Quote of the Day

Tim Gombis in his new book, The Drama of Ephesians: Participating in the Triumph of God (IVP), notes that to read Ephesians as "drama" conflicts with the popular way people often read this letter:

Conceiving of the task of Bible reading as the discovery of isolated principles in the text that need to be recognized, extracted and arranged in a systematic outline of theology leaves interpreters in a situation where there is no demand that they experience transformation. That is, interpreters who might be living wayward lives can happily engage in Bible reading with no change or without being drawn into a richer relationship with God and other believers. On a modern conception of the interpreting individual, the task of interpretation is relatively isolated from the rest of life- I, as an individual, can sit down, read my Bible, recognize and isolate one or two truths from Scripture and get up and go on with my life, regardless of whether I ever do anything with these truths I have found in Ephesians. I may find some way to apply these things to some aspect of my life, but if I do not, there will not be any marked difference in how I conceive of my place in this world, how I conduct myself in relationships or how I play a role in society (17; italics mine).

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