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Robin Parry is the husband of but one wife (Carol) and the father of the two most beautiful girls in the universe (Hannah and Jessica). He also has a lovely cat called Monty (who has only three legs). Living in the city of Worcester, UK, he works as an Editor for Wipf and Stock — a US-based theological publisher. Robin was a Sixth Form College teacher for 11 years and has worked in publishing since 2001 (2001–2010 for Paternoster and 2010– for W&S).

Thursday, 8 January 2009

Questions not Scribbles

So here I am sitting thinking to myself, "C'mon mate! Post something profound."

But nothing comes.

Every topic I care to cast my mind to has more questions for me than I have answers. So I could write down lots of questions about all sorts of things from the 'big issues' to detailed textual issues to do with specific biblical texts. My life is full of questions.

But do I have anything really profound to say right now?

Not really. But I'll let you know when I do.

In the meantime here is a silly little textual puzzle (one I have not really thought about but just briefly wondered about)

Isaiah 63:7-64:12 is a wonderful prayer of praise and petition. It looks like a model prayer in many ways.

But Isaiah 65-66 seem to be God's equivalent of a rejection of the prayer. "No I will not redeem Israel in the way that I have been saying that I will throughout the latter part of the book of Isaiah and in the way that you have asked me to. They are too bad and I have had it with them! Instead I will save a sub-set of Israel and damn the rest!"

So whilst I find Isaiah 65-66 wonderful in many ways they do seem on the surface to undermine a key element in the divine promises thus far.

But this is simply a reflection on a superficial read. I am sure that on closer inspection it will all make sense (it is interesting that Paul applies Isaiah 65:2 to the bulk of Israel in his own day and yet he hold out a more universal hope for the salvation of all Israel - including the currently 'rejected' bulk that Isaiah 65-66 seem to.)

I notice that Lena-Sofia Tiemeyer has argued that 63:7-64:12 is quoted in order to refute it but that by including the full text readers might relativise 65-66 in the light of it. Hmmmmmm. Not at all sure about the hermeneutics involved there but it is an interesting suggestion.

All thoughts welcome.

1 comment:

eclecticchristian.com said...

Sometimes asking a question is the best post, or at least the one that draws the most interaction.

Mike Bell