Sunday, April 06, 2008

OT > NT or NT > OT?

One thing I was trying to ask in my post on Job do you work to understand the New Testament in light of the Old Testament or is their new understanding of the Old Testament in light of the New Testament? Perhaps it's a both/and?

As I see it, the cross of Christ and his resurrection changed everything, ever-y-thing (think of Woody's head spinning in Toy Story when he confronted Sid). So, I think our reading of the Old Testament is going to be influenced by the work of Christ on the cross and his rising from the dead - I mean this is what totally changed Paul from Saul, what changed Paul from a Pharisee to Missionary/Ambassador for Christ - the cross and resurrection. It shifted how he understood the OT, it shifted his focus from the Law to Grace. A case in point is with the issue of "ha-satan" in Job - while perhaps in its context it may have not meant the devil per se, theological development over time and the New Testament re-interpretation of the Old Testament allows us to see that "ha-satan" is in fact Satan, the accuser of the brethren. Thanks to Peter for his input.

What say you?



At 8:48 AM, Blogger Bryan L said...

I think that is an acceptable hermeneutical stance to take in regards to the OT and probably one some of the NT authors made.
I also don't think you have to make that move if you don't want to but it seems like there is enough evidence to see the early church doing that so I guess I would wonder why somebody wouldn't make that move.

I guess the question then is whether the OT has value in and of itself or whether its value comes from the NT and specifically the Christ event?

Bryan L

At 12:12 PM, Blogger Brian said...

Well, I think the OT has plenty of value in and of itself - Jesus referred to it quite often and the Apostles all quoted from it frequently so I think that is a good indicator of its value.

At 12:34 PM, Blogger Peter Kirk said...

Well, Brian, let me make it clear that I don't say we should read the NT back into the OT. So, when reading Job, we should first understand it in the light of the author's understanding of ha-satan, and not in the light of the New Testament teaching about Satan, still less our developed Christian understanding of him. But we should recognise that the same being is referred to in Job and in the NT, and let that inform how we apply Job today. Perhaps I should make this important point clearer on my blog.

Jesus Christ is Lord!

At 12:52 PM, Blogger Brian said...

I apologize Peter, I did not mean to mis-read your post and should have stated it better as to your input on understanding the ha-satan in Job.


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