Sunday, May 6, 2012

A Clarification: Christ Centered Exposition

Let me make this clarification in regard to my last post.

When I speak of interpreting Scripture christocentrically, in a Christ conditioned manner; by and large this has to do with a macro-hermeneutical level instead of a micro-exegetical level. Meaning that, for example, what I am calling for is a hermeneutic, in contrast to something like Dispensationalism or classic Covenantalism, that does not see the nation of Israel (Dispy) or the Church (simpliciter) as the key to understanding Scripture; but as theologian Kathryn Tanner has aptly entitled one of her books: Christ The Key. And this should have a drastic impact upon the way we think hermeneutically. I am not suggesting that we abandon our literary tools, grammatical and historical tools, etc.; but that the frame within which these tools are employed need to be cognizant of and take shape from the fact that Scripture is intentionally and self consciously given by the second person of the Trinity, Christ Jesus himself!

It is only from within this kind of interpretive framework that an orthodox understanding of various issues can be discerned (and I mean ethics, holiness, etc.). Only as relationship and encounter with God in Christ are seen as the ultimate ground and reality of all of Scripture's disclosure. I am not saying there is nothing to be applied to our personal lives, for example, from Scripture; to the contrary! I am suggesting that the only way we will have sound things to apply from Scripture is when we see our lives grounded from and within the Spirit anointed humanity of Jesus Christ. It is as we encounter and cultivate relationship with Christ through meeting him through the Spirit's witness in the Scripture that our lives will be transformed from glory to glory into the image of the Son; and it is this kind of recreated humanity wherein application of God's Word is living and active.

Hope that helps clarify a little further.

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