Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Rant about Critical Theology

Dale Ralph Davis seems to lose patience with modern critical scholarship...

Critics, of course, believe this is a sure sign that [1 Kings 6] verses 11-13 constitute a later insertion into the text, usually a 'deuteronomistic' insertion (J. Gray), or, more precisely, a squib from the special group of law-oriented deuteronomistic editors (G.H. Jones). You can see yourself how such assertions thrill the mind and warm the soul...

My problem with such critics is that they never get to the claim of the text itself. They seem to suppose that once they label a text 'deuteronomistic' they have done their work and don't need to listen to or explain its claims. So what if a text is deuteronomistic? What does it demand from us or give to us? But the critics never arrive at these questions. By dubbing a text 'secondary', they emasculate its authority and so have no need to pay further heed to it. They may deny this, but read their scintillating comments for yourself. When they see an 'intrusive' text, they don't ever seem to ask why this intrusion intrudes. We must not ignore purpose or intention in the present form of the text.

Dale Ralph Davis, from 1 Kings - the Wisdom and the Folly

Post a Comment