I suggest that we welcome all
interpretations, including the historical contextual ones.
Let me firstly, and quickly comment on this well taken suggestion. While I think I can understand the held emotion which can be deciphered from the wording, I'd be quick to counter-suggest, that the term 'welcome
,' actually, may not be the best choice of words. I would suggest the phrasal, 'take note of
Then, I see a classic error here
, and would like to firstly deal with that; and do hope those who have voiced opinions and thoughts would follow and reason along, most carefully, with me on this
Obviously, the letters of Paul were included in the Bible because they speak to other audiences besides (in this example) the Corinthians.
What book are we talking about, I asked myself? Why, it's the Bible, came the answer, probably the Number 1 Spiritual Book of all times.
The word 'revisionism
' had come up--in (most specifically) a misguided application--and this is exactly what we should investigate firstly. For that, we have to station our positions in the mid-first century in the Greco-Roman world, in the atmosphere of the moment with a particular new Judaic teaching. This is a fact-of-reality test.
[indent][indent]A particular troupe, whose leader is from Tarsus, Saul, had been the sole source of information (along with a few others who are saying mostly the same basic thing, in diffferent ways), and is whom all matters which need judging are appealed to. What do we have in the way of written documents? Just a few of the smaller scrolls, in Greek, of portions of wisdom sayings and stories of the Hebrew peoples. (although we may have access to some major prophetic scrolls down at the local synagogue...if the rabbi's friendly with us) Of course, when Saul comes around (which is seldom), or when someone appointed from his troupe does, they'll bring some scrolls or parchments, and maybe some stylus-like, pre-codex-like notes on the 'message of good tidings
Now, when Saul first started this congregation here, he would always use (and still does, when he comes) proof texts from the law of Moses, Jubilees, a certain Daniel, and Isaiah, yet would quote, from memory, a number of other passages from who knows where...but obviously from the Hebrew's religious scrolls. Of course he teaches us on what Yeshua, the messiah, is, did, and is about to do.
OK, so there seems to have been a small problem, one of us has had sexual bonding with his father's wife (I don't know if that's his biological mother, or not), and there have been some disputes on exactly whose teaching should be followed (they are, as I said, much the same, but slightly different--and of course the teaching styles are different...this Apollos is a great speaker, whereas Saul stammers, and is kind of hard to follow at times (Greek is not his mother tongue)
, Paul has sent us a letter through his fellow worker, Timothy, a Grecian who was raised with the Hebrew religious teaching, and now we have this letter which addresses the matter of both the division issue, and the sexual bonding problem (as well a few other things which cover some of what we've already be taught orally).
Of course, Saul (often called Paul), is like the messenger of the messiah to us, is very respected, has some kind of magic power, and has promised to help us survive the great battle and world end that is soon coming as the kingdom of the messiah arrives. He is like a father to us, a direct connection with YHWH, whose first born son, Yeshua, is the promised messiah all the Hebrew prophetic books had been pointing to. The elders of the congregation read the letter to us (since most here cannot read), and keep it safe to use as evidence for how to be perfect and clean in body and mind.
? What are you talking about? Biblion
? OK, which one are you talking about, the Wisdom scroll, Jubilees scroll, the Enoch scroll, that Isaiah scroll over at the synagogue, the congregation notes, or one of the several scrolls on the Hebrew religious teachings that Saul, and his troupe, always carries around with them?
, are you talking about all of them collectively? That letter we got from Saul? Oh, that's important, it's from Saul, our father-teacher in the messiah, but that's not a biblos
, we learned from the biblous
of the Hebrew's religion because that is the story of the messiah, and explains the signs of the time, and the new kingdom that will be set up from heaven by YHWH's son who will soon be coming back to destroy all the other kingdoms of the entire world, from Rome to Persia.[/indent][/indent]
Well, a bit long, and I wanted to make it entertaining as well, but it is based on points scattered throughout (esp. Acts) the extant documents with the highest degree of being truly from Paul, and of that early Christian setting (mid first century), as well as secure understandings in scholarly works.
had highlighted earlier, we, who have been recently born into a situation wherein many among us have been strongly taught that there is this book, this single-volume book, called The Holy Scriptures, or THE Bible
, are the ones practicing the 'revisionism
by doing so. And even though it consists of 66 individual books, we were raised being made to view it as a single book which a forced conception. Since when, is this so
, we must ask ourselves! Since when did a single book concept appear?
It was most clearly not
so even in the first decades of the third century
, and was absolutely not so in the middle of the first century.
Investigating this thoroughly, and as exhaustively as possible, and in realistic and pragmatic methodology, will tell us that Paul's letter to the Corinthians was saved by those who loved him, those who cherished his loss, and believed he had been telling the truth of YHWH and his messiah, and was passed on to those believers who simply slowly developed in 'the church
' which, in turn, had to create a canon to protect itself (a phenomena all large organizations will eventually produce). We have no idea just how many letters Paul had actually written (even that purported letter to the Laodiceans we do not have [Colossians is largely not considered to be an authentic Pauline document, so that information is unsure, but it doesn't mean that there had not been a letter written by some Christian leader, to both congregations there...only not Paul]) and we have a few non-canonical letters.
Simply because a person living in the 21st century, or who had been living in even the 4th century, can be emotionally moved through application of ideas written in any ancient document, as they read through the socio-culturally-environment-instilled eyes of their times, into
the passages, in no way means that their emotion is that of the author of the words, or (especially since we are dealing with simply a letter here) the intended direct and immediate audience. In this case, actually, it is quite impossible, simply because it is by far most clear that Paul would never have accepted, at all, another 1900 something years time to follow his death--the messiah was at the doorstep, it was the last hour
THIS FIRST POINT
is, therefore, that there is no single book, no canon of authority, in the year 56, and we are free to use all sources from Jewish religious documents and teachings, as well as the flexible and not yet so fixed oral traditions of the Yeshua story. Additionally, we have to use these by placing our frame and reference points of reading them, in
that time-locked religio-socio-culturally-determined environment, of that moment--not ours