What Is Sound Doctrine concerning the Doctrinal Importance of Narratives in Scripture?

In a recent thread, the following comments were made:  

Yes, it's God doing this, but we need to keep in mind that Deuteronomy 34:6 is not law, but rather narrative, and trying to derive doctrine from narrative is extremely dangerous business. 

Again, narrative passages tell us what happened, but not always the why.  That's why it's extremely dangerous to try to derive doctrine from narrative passages. 

The passages used by Rajesh to justify his position are narrative, description and not prescription, and hence it's (again) extremely dangerous business to try and draw doctrine from these narratives.

This is one view concerning what is sound doctrine concerning the doctrinal importance of narratives in Scripture. When someone makes an assertion that something is so, they are responsible for proving that what they assert is so.

The maker of these comments, however, has provided no support for his position beyond mere assertion. Mere assertion is not proof.

What is sound doctrine concerning the doctrinal importance of narratives in Scripture? Who decides what is the correct view and what is not?

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Kevin Miller's picture

RajeshG wrote:

 

Kevin Miller wrote:

First off, the 6 examples you gave were one prescriptive statement from Jesus and five from one chapter of the Bible that Paul wrote. So there really are only two passages that you've used so far. That not much of a sample yet, and they all involve declarations against sin. Declarations against sin are fairly easy to discern from Scripture, especially when someone who is divine or someone who is being inspired by God is making the prescriptive declaration.

It is quite another thing altogether for someone who is not divine, or is not being inspired by God, to look at an action in a narrative and then definitively assert that that action is being commanded by God for all people at all times.

 

So who decides how many examples are enough and on what basis will that be a valid criterion and who decides what that valid criterion will be?

Again, my comment to which you are responding was specifically about narratives that have the elements that I stated. There are other biblical examples that I have not yet treated that do not have those elements.

What God says in 2 Tim. 3:16-17 answers your concern in your second paragraph. Any human who reads such biblical narratives is supposed to be profited from them in the same ways as anyone else is for doctrine, reproof, correction, and instruction in righteousness. Because of the universal profitability of Scripture in that respect, formulating a prescriptive statement from such passages is fully legitimate because it is the same truth that anyone and everyone is supposed to understand and accept from that narrative passage about what sinful behavior(s) humans are not to engage in.

In your last paragraph, you tell me that "What God says in 2 Tim. 3:16-17 answers your concern in your second paragraph." I read through your whole paragraph, but then your last 10 words in your answer let me know that you aren't really addressing my concern. My concern was not about "what sinful behavior(s) humans are not to engage in." My concern was about someone who would "look at an action in a narrative and then definitively assert that that action is being commanded by God for all people at all times."

RajeshG's picture

Kevin Miller wrote:

 

RajeshG wrote:
I have not said that Deut. 21:23 is a command to NT Christians; I have said that it was a command to OT Israel. You are misrepresenting my view. It is you who is unjustly attacking me.

 

 

Here are your exact words from the other thread. 

 

I do not claim this passage alone as what is in Scripture that teaches us that cremation is unacceptable to God and that burial is His will for what God's people are to do with the dead bodies of His saints today. The passage is a revelation of the mind of God and the righteousness of God. What it teaches cannot be set aside as unimportant for us simply because it was a command to OT Israel.

So yes, you are specifically saying that it was a command to OT Israel. But you are also quite clear that you believe this command is important for us today to know "the mind of God and the righteousness of God" in regard to burial, and only burial, being "His will for what God's people are to do with the dead bodies of His saints today." So is it your position that even though Deut 21:23 is not a command to us, we are still required to obey it since it tells us the will of God?

Christians must not choose or support anything other than the burial of the dead bodies of criminals who would be executed today (by any means) and who would be publicly hanged as a warning to others not to commit those same crimes.

RajeshG's picture

Kevin Miller wrote:

 

RajeshG wrote:

 

 

Kevin Miller wrote:

First off, the 6 examples you gave were one prescriptive statement from Jesus and five from one chapter of the Bible that Paul wrote. So there really are only two passages that you've used so far. That not much of a sample yet, and they all involve declarations against sin. Declarations against sin are fairly easy to discern from Scripture, especially when someone who is divine or someone who is being inspired by God is making the prescriptive declaration.

It is quite another thing altogether for someone who is not divine, or is not being inspired by God, to look at an action in a narrative and then definitively assert that that action is being commanded by God for all people at all times.

 

So who decides how many examples are enough and on what basis will that be a valid criterion and who decides what that valid criterion will be?

Again, my comment to which you are responding was specifically about narratives that have the elements that I stated. There are other biblical examples that I have not yet treated that do not have those elements.

What God says in 2 Tim. 3:16-17 answers your concern in your second paragraph. Any human who reads such biblical narratives is supposed to be profited from them in the same ways as anyone else is for doctrine, reproof, correction, and instruction in righteousness. Because of the universal profitability of Scripture in that respect, formulating a prescriptive statement from such passages is fully legitimate because it is the same truth that anyone and everyone is supposed to understand and accept from that narrative passage about what sinful behavior(s) humans are not to engage in.

 

In your last paragraph, you tell me that "What God says in 2 Tim. 3:16-17 answers your concern in your second paragraph." I read through your whole paragraph, but then your last 10 words in your answer let me know that you aren't really addressing my concern. My concern was not about "what sinful behavior(s) humans are not to engage in." My concern was about someone who would "look at an action in a narrative and then definitively assert that that action is being commanded by God for all people at all times."

Yes, I am doing so concerning a specific subset of narrative passages that have the elements that I specified and that do not have other biblical revelation that counters in some way the teaching of those passages. Every reader of that kind of narrative passage is supposed to come away with the same understanding of divine punishment of the type(s) of human sinfulness seen in those passages.

From reading of that divine judgment, every person is supposed to receive the same instruction not to do those things or things like them. Formulating prescriptive statements that express the same truth(s) (seen in that specific type of narrative passage) about what applies to all humans but was not given as a prescriptive statement is fully legitimate.

JNoël's picture

RajeshG wrote:

Formulating prescriptive statements that express the same truth(s) (seen in that specific type of narrative passage) about what applies to all humans but was not given as a prescriptive statement is fully legitimate.

Now we're getting somewhere.

I don't think I have ever heard of this position in my 40+ years of fundamental/evangelical church-going life, but evidently it is, indeed, a "thing." Not that I think this is necessary, but can you point me to some published resources that support this thinking?

Ashamed of Jesus! of that Friend On whom for heaven my hopes depend! It must not be! be this my shame, That I no more revere His name. -Joseph Grigg (1720-1768)

RajeshG's picture

JNoël wrote:

 

RajeshG wrote:

 

Formulating prescriptive statements that express the same truth(s) (seen in that specific type of narrative passage) about what applies to all humans but was not given as a prescriptive statement is fully legitimate.

 

 

Now we're getting somewhere.

I don't think I have ever heard of this position in my 40+ years of fundamental/evangelical church-going life, but evidently it is, indeed, a "thing." Not that I think this is necessary, but can you point me to some published resources that support this thinking?

I am now more than 15 years out from any of my seminary coursework. I do not know what is out there in the "published resources."

What I am setting forth in this thread is largely (or in some aspects, entirely) my independent derivation of my understanding of what Scripture itself teaches about how we are to profit from Scripture itself, especially from narrative passages.

Now, it's my turn. Can you provide any prescriptive statements from Scripture that specify for us how we are to handle, interpret, and apply narratives properly and that instruct us specifically that we are not supposed to derive prescriptive statements from any narrative passages?

RajeshG's picture

JNoël wrote:

 

RajeshG wrote:

 

Formulating prescriptive statements that express the same truth(s) (seen in that specific type of narrative passage) about what applies to all humans but was not given as a prescriptive statement is fully legitimate.

 

 

Now we're getting somewhere.

I don't think I have ever heard of this position in my 40+ years of fundamental/evangelical church-going life, but evidently it is, indeed, a "thing." Not that I think this is necessary, but can you point me to some published resources that support this thinking?

In your subject line of your previous comment, you did not accurately represent my approach. I do not specify or advocate for the derivation of "commands sourced strictly from narratives." My approach is an entire-Bible approach that looks at what is contained in those narratives and how it correlates with everything else said in Scripture about that same subject.

Just because there may not be any prescriptive statements about a certain matter in Scripture does not mean that Scripture does not have any other type of non-narrative revelation that is instructive and that applies to that matter.

JNoël's picture

RajeshG wrote:

Now, it's my turn. Can you provide any prescriptive statements from Scripture that specify for us how we are to handle, interpret, and apply narratives properly and that instruct us specifically that we are not supposed to derive prescriptive statements from any narrative passages?

This comes off as a bit smug. Of course I can't, and you know that.

I asked for resources because your ideas about formulating commands that are based solely on narrative appears to be a novel one, to me. But I readily admit that I am not an expert in this area, only that in my Christian life I have not heard what you propose, so I'm looking for more information that may help guide my thinking - in either direction.

Ashamed of Jesus! of that Friend On whom for heaven my hopes depend! It must not be! be this my shame, That I no more revere His name. -Joseph Grigg (1720-1768)

RajeshG's picture

JNoël wrote:

 

RajeshG wrote:

 

Now, it's my turn. Can you provide any prescriptive statements from Scripture that specify for us how we are to handle, interpret, and apply narratives properly and that instruct us specifically that we are not supposed to derive prescriptive statements from any narrative passages?

 

 

This comes off as a bit smug. Of course I can't, and you know that.

I asked for resources because your ideas about formulating commands that are based solely on narrative appears to be a novel one, to me. But I readily admit that I am not an expert in this area, only that in my Christian life I have not heard what you propose, so I'm looking for more information that may help guide my thinking - in either direction.


 

Again, you are not understanding my approach properly. I have not advocated for "formulating commands that are based solely on narrative" [bold added to the original].

JNoël's picture

RajeshG wrote:

Again, you are not understanding my approach properly. I have not advocated for "formulating commands that are based solely on narrative" [bold added to the original].

Is that better?

Ashamed of Jesus! of that Friend On whom for heaven my hopes depend! It must not be! be this my shame, That I no more revere His name. -Joseph Grigg (1720-1768)

RajeshG's picture

JNoël wrote:

 

RajeshG wrote:

 

Now, it's my turn. Can you provide any prescriptive statements from Scripture that specify for us how we are to handle, interpret, and apply narratives properly and that instruct us specifically that we are not supposed to derive prescriptive statements from any narrative passages?

 

 

This comes off as a bit smug. Of course I can't, and you know that.

I asked for resources because your ideas about formulating commands that are based solely on narrative appears to be a novel one, to me. But I readily admit that I am not an expert in this area, only that in my Christian life I have not heard what you propose, so I'm looking for more information that may help guide my thinking - in either direction.

You are not prepared to defend your views with Scripture yet you feel justified (not in these remarks but in some of your other remarks) in charging me more than once with very serious offenses? I object very strongly to people saying such things about me that are not true.

JNoël's picture

RajeshG wrote:

You are not prepared to defend your views with Scripture yet you feel justified (not in these remarks but in some of your other remarks) in charging me more than once with very serious offenses? I object very strongly to people saying such things about me that are not true.

I stand by my remarks until you can come up with some reason why Christians should accept what appears to me to be a novel approach to scripture. You are asking us to obey commands that come from narrative if they have not had any overriding specific commands elsewhere - this has far-reaching impacts, and the burden of evidence is yours.

Ashamed of Jesus! of that Friend On whom for heaven my hopes depend! It must not be! be this my shame, That I no more revere His name. -Joseph Grigg (1720-1768)

RajeshG's picture

JNoël wrote:

 

RajeshG wrote:

 

You are not prepared to defend your views with Scripture yet you feel justified (not in these remarks but in some of your other remarks) in charging me more than once with very serious offenses? I object very strongly to people saying such things about me that are not true.

I stand by my remarks until you can come up with some reason why Christians should accept what appears to me to be a novel approach to scripture. You are asking us to obey commands that come from narrative if they have not had any overriding specific commands elsewhere - this has far-reaching impacts, and the burden of evidence is yours.

You have zero biblical evidence to support your charges against me. Your charges are therefore baseless statements that do not carry any weight.

JNoël's picture

RajeshG wrote:

You have zero biblical evidence to support your charges against me. Your charges are therefore baseless statements that do not carry any weight.

  • That's okay if you want to deflect.
  • "WHAT IS SOUND DOCTRINE CONCERNING THE DOCTRINAL IMPORTANCE OF NARRATIVES IN SCRIPTURE?" is the name of the thread, but I suspect you aren't actually looking for answers to that question, it seems you are already fully settled on your position.
  • Your answer to your other thread still seems to be a novel approach to scripture and merely a way to satisfy your position that some practices that aren't explicitly called out in the Bible as sinful are actually sinful.
  • I asked you to provide any published support that I could read to help me better understand your method of interpreting scripture and applying it to our lives as what God considers sinful and righteous. I don't think you have any, but, if you do, I'm happy to consider it.
  • I would never ask you to violate your conscience. But to force upon others as fact something that is scripturally ambiguous violates the principles laid out in I Cor 8 - 11:1, at the very least.

 

Ashamed of Jesus! of that Friend On whom for heaven my hopes depend! It must not be! be this my shame, That I no more revere His name. -Joseph Grigg (1720-1768)

Darrell McCarthy's picture

? for Rajesh - Adiaphora

Do you see that some issues are "adiaphora"? " the opinion that certain doctrines or practices in morals or religion are matters of indifference because they are neither commanded nor forbidden in the Bible."

RajeshG's picture

JNoël wrote:

  • I would never ask you to violate your conscience. But to force upon others as fact something that is scripturally ambiguous violates the principles laid out in I Cor 8 - 11:1, at the very least.

There is no ambiguity about the subject of the other thread.

JNoël's picture

RajeshG wrote:

 

JNoël wrote:

 

  • I would never ask you to violate your conscience. But to force upon others as fact something that is scripturally ambiguous violates the principles laid out in I Cor 8 - 11:1, at the very least.

 

 

There is no ambiguity about the subject of the other thread.

Not to you, there isn't, but to many others, there is - and there is ample ground for the position of ambiguity, too, which means you are wrong to turn this into a dogmatic position.

Ashamed of Jesus! of that Friend On whom for heaven my hopes depend! It must not be! be this my shame, That I no more revere His name. -Joseph Grigg (1720-1768)

RajeshG's picture

JNoël wrote:

 

RajeshG wrote:

 

 

JNoël wrote:

 

  • I would never ask you to violate your conscience. But to force upon others as fact something that is scripturally ambiguous violates the principles laid out in I Cor 8 - 11:1, at the very least.

 

 

There is no ambiguity about the subject of the other thread.

 

 

Not to you, there isn't, but to many others, there is - and there is ample ground for the position of ambiguity, too, which means you are wrong to turn this into a dogmatic position.

No, you do not just get to declare that I am wrong. Mere assertion does not prove anything. Prove it biblically.

josh p's picture

Rajesh, as I said before, you don't get to assert a novel hermeneutic and then say "prove it biblically" to those that disagree, as if that settles everything. You are the one who is outside of normative hermeneutics. The onus is on you to prove that what you are doing is legitimate. You have not done so and double down with more novel interpretation. And before you say, "prove to me that I am outside of normative hermeneutics" I offered to provide resources but you rebuffed, saying that you didn't have time. You are outside the norm arguing (taking a lot of time to do so) for a position that is debated by even very conservative Christian's and using a novel interpretive method to justify it.
 

I encourage you to think about your own abilities and the blessing of all the scholars in church history that have not arrived at that conclusion. They can't all be ignorant or dishonest. No doubt you are capable in the scriptures but you should have the humility to pause and rethink when you are novel. 

RajeshG's picture

josh p wrote:

Rajesh, as I said before, you don't get to assert a novel hermeneutic and then say "prove it biblically" to those that disagree, as if that settles everything. You are the one who is outside of normative hermeneutics. The onus is on you to prove that what you are doing is legitimate. You have not done so and double down with more novel interpretation. And before you say, "prove to me that I am outside of normative hermeneutics" I offered to provide resources but you rebuffed, saying that you didn't have time. You are outside the norm arguing (taking a lot of time to do so) for a position that is debated by even very conservative Christian's and using a novel interpretive method to justify it. I encourage you to think about your own abilities and the blessing of all the scholars in church history that have not arrived at that conclusion. They can't all be ignorant or dishonest. No doubt you are capable in the scriptures but you should have the humility to pause and rethink when you are novel. 

You have had your say. You and others are obviously not interested in actual discussion of the Bible. How about you just move on to other threads and interact with people on them? In any case, I do not have anything further to discuss with you unless you start interacting with the Bible itself.

josh p's picture

Judging by the title of the thread, this wasn’t meant to be about interacting with individual texts. I thought that was what the other thread was about. However my, and others, concern is your handling of the scriptures. You are on a Christian forum. Expect to be challenged when you interpret the Bible the way you do.

Also, if you recall, you and I were having a profitable discussion about the scriptures until I challenged your hermeneutical approach at which time you told me you didn’t have time to hear from others. You then started this thread. What was the point if you don’t have time to hear from those who disagree with you? Is this just another blog for you?

No man is an interpretive island Rajesh. I’m thankful for your love of the scriptures but you evince an unwillingness to accept disagreement. If you don’t wish to continue with me that’s fine. That of course will not stop me from responding on this public forum as I see fit.

RajeshG's picture

josh p wrote:

Judging by the title of the thread, this wasn’t meant to be about interacting with individual texts. I thought that was what the other thread was about. However my, and others, concern is your handling of the scriptures. You are on a Christian forum. Expect to be challenged when you interpret the Bible the way you do.

Also, if you recall, you and I were having a profitable discussion about the scriptures until I challenged your hermeneutical approach at which time you told me you didn’t have time to hear from others. You then started this thread. What was the point if you don’t have time to hear from those who disagree with you? Is this just another blog for you?

No man is an interpretive island Rajesh. I’m thankful for your love of the scriptures but you evince an unwillingness to accept disagreement. If you don’t wish to continue with me that’s fine. That of course will not stop me from responding on this public forum as I see fit.

You are free to disagree and to continue responding. I have no problem with disagreement. I have a problem with those who want to pontificate and not actually discuss what the Bible teaches about hermeneutics, etc. Support what you believe biblically.

josh p's picture

Support that apocalyptic literature is different than epistolary literature. Show us the grammatical rules described in scripture. 

RajeshG's picture

josh p wrote:

Support that apocalyptic literature is different than epistolary literature. Show us the grammatical rules described in scripture. 

That's not the subject of this thread.

If my Bible cannot teach me about how to understand the Bible, it is not sufficient to equip me for every good work. If that is true, for learning how to understand the Bible, I need everything except the Bible itself.

josh p's picture

Ok just answer if it's possible to do. Obviously there are extremes on both ends. The excesses of Second Temple Judaism on one and the "no creed but the Bible" obscurantism that has paved the way for so much liberalism in the church on the other. Still, I think you would admit that part of the Historical-grammatical hermeneutic includes the historical part. Do you affirm that? Do you recognize that, in order to study and understand our Bibles we have to learn about ancient eastern culture? Or is this "not the subject of this thread"? 

RajeshG's picture

josh p wrote:

Ok just answer if it's possible to do. Obviously there are extremes on both ends. The excesses of Second Temple Judaism on one and the "no creed but the Bible" obscurantism that has paved the way for so much liberalism in the church on the other. Still, I think you would admit that part of the Historical-grammatical hermeneutic includes the historical part. Do you affirm that? Do you recognize that, in order to study and understand our Bibles we have to learn about ancient eastern culture? Or is this "not the subject of this thread"? 

I do not care about talking about anything else. My Bible is sufficient to teach me about the doctrinal importance of narratives. Examining how the Bible itself uses narratives is fully legitimate in understanding that subject. What God has revealed about that subject is what is essential to profit from.

Kevin Miller's picture

RajeshG wrote:

 

Kevin Miller wrote:

 

 

RajeshG wrote:
I have not said that Deut. 21:23 is a command to NT Christians; I have said that it was a command to OT Israel. You are misrepresenting my view. It is you who is unjustly attacking me.

Here are your exact words from the other thread. 

I do not claim this passage alone as what is in Scripture that teaches us that cremation is unacceptable to God and that burial is His will for what God's people are to do with the dead bodies of His saints today. The passage is a revelation of the mind of God and the righteousness of God. What it teaches cannot be set aside as unimportant for us simply because it was a command to OT Israel.

So yes, you are specifically saying that it was a command to OT Israel. But you are also quite clear that you believe this command is important for us today to know "the mind of God and the righteousness of God" in regard to burial, and only burial, being "His will for what God's people are to do with the dead bodies of His saints today." So is it your position that even though Deut 21:23 is not a command to us, we are still required to obey it since it tells us the will of God?

 

Christians must not choose or support anything other than the burial of the dead bodies of criminals who would be executed today (by any means) and who would be publicly hanged as a warning to others not to commit those same crimes.

So does this response count as a "yes" to my question? Are you saying it's not a command to us but we still need to obey it? I understand from this response that you are limiting your answer about obedience to this command to the subject of the burial of criminals rather than to the general subject of burial of everyone else. Is that right? Is this a modification of your previous position that this verse tells us the will of God regarding the burial of all people?

I don't understand why you are adding the part about execution "by any means." Even if you are now modifying your answer to talk about criminals rather than all people, I don't see how the context of the command supports a position regarding burying people who've been executed by other means other than hanging. The verse tells us why the body must be removed from the tree and buried the same day. It's because, as the verse says, "(for he that is hanged is accursed of God;)" If they didn't bury the hanging victim the same day, then their land would be defiled. So this command that the executed person has to be buried is a command that is specific to "hanged people" and not people who've been executed by other means.

And it's certainly not a command regarding the general population who have not been hanged.

Getting back to the subject of this thread, which is about deriving sound doctrine: Could it be that a factor in this discussion is the difference between "interpretation" and "application?" In Deut 21:23, the interpretation is that this is a command given to OT Israel related specifically to criminals who are hanged and who therefore need to be buried the same day so that the land of Israel is not defiled. So can applications for believers today be derived from this? We know that believers today are not under law given to Israel, but I'm not opposed to the idea that certain things regarding the mind of God about various subjects can be derived from this. Those things would have to be rather general, though.

For example, can we learn anything about the mind of God regarding capital punishment? It's not condemned here, but it's also not specified as God's only acceptable punishment for any offense. I think the only thing we can definitely say about capitol punishment is that it is one of potentially many acceptable punishments.

What about execution by hanging? That also seems to be acceptable since condemnation of it isn't given in verse 22. However, verse 23 does tell us that "he that is hanged is accursed of God." So someone could derive the principle that hanging is unacceptable to God since God has accursed those who are hanged.

How about same day burial? That is required in this verse, but only because a specific circumstance, that of hanging, requires it. If someone wants to draw an application for themselves, that they understand God's will for themselves to be same day burial, they certainly can do so, but the context of the verse doesn't warrant applying same day burial to everyone.

Is burial for everyone a principle that everyone should take from the verse? The verse itself is only talking about criminals, so it's not directly commanding burial for everyone. We can see that burial is acceptable to God, but God's acceptance of it does not rule out God also accepting other forms of body disposal. A verse that commands that criminals who been hanged be buried that same day does not tell us anything about the mind of God regarding burial of anyone else, other than that burial is one of potentially many acceptable forms of body disposal.

RajeshG's picture

Kevin Miller wrote:

I don't understand why you are adding the part about execution "by any means." Even if you are now modifying your answer to talk about criminals rather than all people, I don't see how the context of the command supports a position regarding burying people who've been executed by other means other than hanging. The verse tells us why the body must be removed from the tree and buried the same day. It's because, as the verse says, "(for he that is hanged is accursed of God;)" If they didn't bury the hanging victim the same day, then their land would be defiled. So this command that the executed person has to be buried is a command that is specific to "hanged people" and not people who've been executed by other means.

Wrong. The passage does not teach that the person was executed by hanging. The hanging was something in addition to the person being put to death.

Deuteronomy 21:22 And if a man have committed a sin worthy of death, and he be to be put to death,
and thou hang him on a tree:

The text does not say, "He be put to death by hanging him on a tree."

"A hanged corpse. 21:22-23. Hanging a criminal on a tree was not for the purpose of putting him to death. Rather, after he was executed for a capital offense . . . his body was hanged on a tree as a warning to all who saw it not to commit the same offense (BKC: OT, 301)."

josh p's picture

RajeshG wrote:

 

josh p wrote:

 

Ok just answer if it's possible to do. Obviously there are extremes on both ends. The excesses of Second Temple Judaism on one and the "no creed but the Bible" obscurantism that has paved the way for so much liberalism in the church on the other. Still, I think you would admit that part of the Historical-grammatical hermeneutic includes the historical part. Do you affirm that? Do you recognize that, in order to study and understand our Bibles we have to learn about ancient eastern culture? Or is this "not the subject of this thread"? 

 

 

I do not care about talking about anything else. My Bible is sufficient to teach me about the doctrinal importance of narratives. Examining how the Bible itself uses narratives is fully legitimate in understanding that subject. What God has revealed about that subject is what is essential to profit from.

I am responding within the focus of the thread and asking a related question. Why won't you answer? 

RajeshG's picture

josh p wrote:

 

RajeshG wrote:

 

 

josh p wrote:

 

Ok just answer if it's possible to do. Obviously there are extremes on both ends. The excesses of Second Temple Judaism on one and the "no creed but the Bible" obscurantism that has paved the way for so much liberalism in the church on the other. Still, I think you would admit that part of the Historical-grammatical hermeneutic includes the historical part. Do you affirm that? Do you recognize that, in order to study and understand our Bibles we have to learn about ancient eastern culture? Or is this "not the subject of this thread"? 

 

 

I do not care about talking about anything else. My Bible is sufficient to teach me about the doctrinal importance of narratives. Examining how the Bible itself uses narratives is fully legitimate in understanding that subject. What God has revealed about that subject is what is essential to profit from.

 

 

I am responding within the focus of the thread and asking a related question. Why won't you answer? 

Because I am not interested in discussing anything other than the specific subject of the thread. 

Kevin Miller's picture

RajeshG wrote:

 

Kevin Miller wrote:

 

I don't understand why you are adding the part about execution "by any means." Even if you are now modifying your answer to talk about criminals rather than all people, I don't see how the context of the command supports a position regarding burying people who've been executed by other means other than hanging. The verse tells us why the body must be removed from the tree and buried the same day. It's because, as the verse says, "(for he that is hanged is accursed of God;)" If they didn't bury the hanging victim the same day, then their land would be defiled. So this command that the executed person has to be buried is a command that is specific to "hanged people" and not people who've been executed by other means.

 

 

Wrong. The passage does not teach that the person was executed by hanging. The hanging was something in addition to the person being put to death.

Deuteronomy 21:22 And if a man have committed a sin worthy of death, and he be to be put to death,
and thou hang him on a tree:

The text does not say, "He be put to death by hanging him on a tree."

What? Are you saying that the Israelites would stone people, or execute them some other way, and then put them up in a tree? What would be the purpose in that? Seriously now, this verse was talking about execution by hanging. Why else would they be put on a tree?

Maybe I'm misreading you and you're just trying to make a sarcastic joke.

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