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What Have They Done to the Bible: A History of Modern Biblical Interpretation [Paperback]

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Item Specifications...

Pages   378
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 9" Width: 6.12" Height: 0.86"
Weight:   1.18 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Jun 1, 2005
Publisher   Liturgical Press
ISBN  0814650287  
EAN  9780814650288  


Availability  0 units.


Item Description...
Overview
Why have so many scholars ceased to believe in a type of inspiration that distinguishes the Bible from every other book? Why is fundamentalism so unsatisfying to modern people? This history of biblical interpretation from 1500 to the present answers these questions by showing how biblical scholarship has developed under the influence of internal and external factors. In What Have They Done to the Bible John Sandys-Wunsch documents the changes that have taken place in biblical exegesis since 1500 and accounts for the major reasons for these changes. Answering the question of why fundamentalism is unsatisfying to modern people, Sandys-Wunsch maintains that this development was the result of occurrences both within and outside biblical interpretation. The "internal" developments consisted of work on the textual tradition, biblical languages, and the recognition of wider problems such as consistency, cogency, and coherence within biblical documents. "External" factors were the development of secular society, tolerance, academic freedom, a perceived dichotomy between the Bible and science, and information about human culture in general, both past and present. He concludes that after the Renaissance it was the application of historical considerations to both the internal and external factors of the biblical tradition that was the main source of the modern approach to the Bible.

Publishers Description

Why have so many scholars ceased to believe in a type of inspiration that distinguishes the Bible from every other book? Why is fundamentalism so unsatisfying to modern people? This history of biblical interpretation from 1500 to the present answers these questions by showing how biblical scholarship has developed under the influence of internal and external factors.

In "What Have They Done to the Bible" John Sandys-Wunsch documents the changes that have taken place in biblical exegesis since 1500 and accounts for the major reasons for these changes. Answering the question of why fundamentalism is unsatisfying to modern people, Sandys-Wunsch maintains that this development was the result of occurrences both within and outside biblical interpretation. The internal" developments consisted of work on the textual tradition, biblical languages, and the recognition of wider problems such as consistency, cogency, and coherence within biblical documents. *External - factors were the development of secular society, tolerance, academic freedom, a perceived dichotomy between the Bible and science, and information about human culture in general, both past and present. He concludes that after the Renaissance it was the application of historical considerations to both the internal and external factors of the biblical tradition that was the main source of the modern approach to the Bible.

"The Rev. Dr. John Sandys-Wunsch, D.S.Litt., D.Phil., formerly a university professor and administrator in Canada and England, is a research fellow at the University of Victoria.""

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More About John Sandys-Wunsch

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! The Rev. Dr. John Sandys-Wunsch holds a doctorate in Old Testament studies and is the veteran of many years of teaching, mainly in Canadian universities. He is a research fellow of the University of Victoria, Victoria, B.C.

John Sandys-Wunsch was born in 1936.

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Reviews - What do our customers think?
A History of Modern Biblical Interpretation For the General Reader  Aug 13, 2005
Is the Bible an inerrant or verbally inspired religious text "let down from heaven"? The question continues to be of interest and even concern for many people in our culture. For some, it seems, the health or perhaps the survival of their religious faith appears to depend on the answer. Having completed the book, readers will decide the answer for themselves, for while the author's personal answer is "hardly," nevertheless Sandys-Wunsch allows the story and its facts to speak for themselves. No dogmatic answers, one way or another, are included. John Sandys-Wunsch has written a solid and extensively researched book on the the history of biblical manuscripts and interpretations from the Renaissance through the 19th century. The book's scholarship and painstaking research are superb and are reason enough to read the book, but it is also a combination rarely seen in the writing of historical/religious texts: First-class scholarship plus availability for the general reader. Sandys-Wunsch tells us the fascinating story of how and and why some ancient biblical manuscripts survived over centuries and why others were discarded as untrustworthy. How were biblical texts understood in the 15th century compared to the exegetics of the 18th century? For example, the author relates how interpreters treated the Bible's miracle stories over the years, always a good index for changing patterns of biblical exegesis. But the heart of the story and its most complex yet fascinating dimension indicates how very much biblical interpretation is a living thing, that is, how much our understanding of the Bible is a part of the world in which it has taken place. As well as preachers, politicians, princes, philosophers, pendants and scientists played an important role in the story. The story of biblical interpretation is populated by all sorts and conditons of humanity, and Sandys-Wunsch's closely documented narrative focuses on them; they were brilliant, inept, tedious, filled with intellectual integrity, deceptive, fearless, and cowardly. They were all the things we are, and all of them are interesting as they tried to understand and sometimes to conceal how the Bible should be read. A history of biblical hermeneutics threatens to be dull reading indeed, but for those interested in such a history John Sandys-Wunsch has made it an absorbing tale.
 

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