Opening the Old Testament• Welcome• Amenities• Structure of the course• Assessment• Questions
Why should we use the Old Testament any way?• Answers on the board• Now behold, two of them were traveling that same day to a village called Emmaus, which was seven miles[a] from Jerusalem. 14 And they talked together of all these things which had happened. 15 So it was, while they conversed and reasoned, that Jesus Himself drew near and went with them. 16 But their eyes were restrained, so that they did not know Him. 17 And He said to them, “What kind of conversation is this that you have with one another as you walk and are sad?”[b] 18 Then the one whose name was Cleopas answered and said to Him, “Are You the only stranger in Jerusalem, and have You not known the things which happened there in these days?” 19 And He said to them, “What things?”
Emmaus• So they said to Him, “The things concerning Jesus of Nazareth, who was a Prophet mighty in deed and word before God and all the people, 20 and how the chief priests and our rulers delivered Him to be condemned to death, and crucified Him. 21 But we were hoping that it was He who was going to redeem Israel. Indeed, besides all this, today is the third day since these things happened. 22 Yes, and certain women of our company, who arrived at the tomb early, astonished us. 23 When they did not find His body, they came saying that they had also seen a vision of angels who said He was alive. 24 And certain of those who were with us went to the tomb and found it just as the women had said; but Him they did not see.” 25 Then He said to them, “O foolish ones, and slow of heart to believe in all that the prophets have spoken! 26 Ought not the Christ to have suffered these things and to enter into His glory?” 27 And beginning at Moses and all the Prophets, He expounded to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning Himself.
OT in the NT• 2 Timothy 3:16 - All scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness,• There is around 350 OT quotes in the NT• Jesus quotes the OT
Marcionism• AD 140: Marcion, a businessman in Rome, taught that there were two Gods: Yahweh, the cruel God of the Old Testament, and Abba, the kind father of the New Testament. Marcion eliminated the Old Testament as scriptures and, since he was anti- Semitic, kept from the New Testament only 10 letters of Paul and 2/3 of Lukes gospel (he deleted references to Jesuss Jewishness).
What is the Old Testament?• How would you describe the Old Testament?• The Word of God• Sacred Scripture (Sacra Scriptura)• Part of the Bible
The Bible• What does the word The Bible mean?• to βιβλίον• τὰ βιβλία• What does Testament mean?• The Latin word testamentum translates the Hebrew word for "covenant," berith.• Language is very important!
Why do we trust the Bible?• Answers on the board• So we have established that Jesus used the OT and that the Bible comes from the early Church. But still why should we trust that this is the revelation of God to Humanity?• The question is: What is revelation?
Revelation?How Does God Communicate to the Human Family?
Topics• The context• The Basis of Revelation• Scripture and Tradition
The Basis of Revelation• The Shema “Hear”• God is a God who speaks (Dei Verbum)• God speaking through creation (Humanity)• Rom 1:19. “For what can be known about God is perfectly pain to them, since God has made it plain to them: ever since the creation of the world, the invisible existence of God and his ever lasting power have been clearly seen by the mind’s understanding of created things.”
Through Creation• C.S Lewis: “God has impressed some sort of likeness to Himself… in all that he has made. Space and time, in their own way, mirror His Greatness; all life His fecundity; animal life His activity. Man has a more important likeness by being rational.”• Jean Danielou, “…the stars and the regularity of their courses, the rock and its stillness, the dew and its blessing-are so many hierophanies, visible manifestations through each of which an aspect of God is revealed. This revelation has another basis too, a metaphysical one, on the general analogy of being; according to this, all being is a participation in God, and bears some traces of Him.”
Analogia Entis• Aristotle: Unmoved mover, first cause (not Christian as it is not personal)• Something of the cause is in the effect. We see the painter in the paining• Tension must be held between God as immanent and transcendent.
Reality of Analogy• Danilou “God and Us” p5 “Origen used to say that it is always dangerous to speak of God. It is true that all we say of Him seems utterly unworthy, in comparison with what He is; …He is, says Pseudo- Dionysius, all that is and nothing that is.”• CCC The dissimilarity out ways the similarity
Personal Revelation• It is to the person that God speaks. To every person always.• St Augustine; “and lo you were within me and I outside.”• Revelation needs to be received, this is ultimately the work of the Holy Spirit. (Hear)• St Basil says that “The Spirit alone knows the depths of God, and creatures receive from him the revelation of his mysteries.”
The Phenomenon of Religion• Ethics and religion are universal
What has this to do with Scripture?• How is Scripture the revelation of God?• How is this different to personal or general revelation?
Scripture and Tradition• What is the Christian understanding of Revelation?• History as Revelation• First Covenant• Final Covenant
Dei Verbum• 2. In His goodness and wisdom God chose to reveal Himself and to make known to us the hidden purpose of His will by which, through Christ, the Word made flesh, man might in the Holy Spirit have access to the Father and come to share in the divine nature. Through this revelation, therefore, the invisible God out of the abundance of His love speaks to men as friends, and lives among them, so that He may invite and take them into fellowship with Himself.• This plan of revelation is realized by deeds and words having in inner unity: the deeds wrought by God in the history of salvation manifest and confirm the teaching and realities signified by the words, while the words proclaim the deeds and clarify the mystery contained in them. By this revelation then, the deepest truth about God and the salvation of man shines out for our sake in Christ, who is both the mediator and the fullness of all revelation.
The First Covenant• 3 Through the patriarchs, and after them through Moses and the prophets, He taught this people to acknowledge Himself the one living and true God, provident father and just judge, and to wait for the Savior promised by Him, and in this manner prepared the way for the Gospel down through the centuries.
The Final Covenant• 4. Then, after speaking in many and varied ways through the prophets, "now at last in these days God has spoken to us in His Son" (Heb. 1:1-2).• For this reason Jesus perfected revelation by fulfilling it through his whole work of making Himself present and manifesting Himself: through His words and deeds, His signs and wonders, but especially through His death and glorious resurrection from the dead and final sending of the Spirit of truth.
Scripture and Tradition• The words of the holy fathers witness to the presence of this living tradition, whose wealth is poured into the practice and life of the believing and praying Church. Through the same tradition the Churchs full canon of the sacred books is known, and the sacred writings themselves are more profoundly understood and unceasingly made active in her
Inspiration• 11(Scripture is ) written under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit (and) have God as their author… In composing the sacred books God chose men, and while employed by Him they made use of their powers and abilities, so with him acting in them and through them, they, as true authors, consigned to writing everything and only those things which He wanted.
Scripture• 12. However, since God speaks in Sacred Scripture through men in human fashion, the interpreter of Sacred Scripture, in order to see clearly what God wanted to communicate to us, should carefully investigate what meaning the sacred writers really intended, and what God wanted to manifest by means of their words.
The Unity of Scripture• But, since Holy Scripture must be read and interpreted in the sacred spirit in which it was written, (9) no less serious attention must be given to the content and unity of the whole of Scripture if the meaning of the sacred texts is to be correctly worked out.
Place of Scripture• 21. The Church has always venerated the divine Scriptures just as she venerates the body of the Lord, since, especially in the sacred liturgy, she unceasingly receives and offers to the faithful the bread of life from the table both of Gods word and of Christs body.
Modern Reception• What do people say about the possibility of revelation?
Response to Dei Verbum• Rahner says that revelation is; “…the history of that… relation between man and God, which is constituted by God’s self- revelation…”• Ratzinger ask of the Protestant, “Can the word be posited as independent without thereby delivering it up to the caprice of exegetes, evacuating it of meaning in the controversies of historians and so robbing it of binding force?”• Ratzinger goes on to say that the relationship of word to Church is crucial, as, “The Catholic will say that the Lord himself has delivered it to the Church.”
Dynamic Relationship• God Speaks through Christ• God inhabits the Church guiding it (Body)• God acts in the person to receive revelation• “Revelation is in fact fully present only when, in addition to the material statements which testify to it, its own inner reality is itself operative in the form of faith.”
Revelation as Love: Hans Urs von Balthasar• “God’s word must interpret itself and wishes to do so. And if it does so, then one thing is clear from the outset; it will not be found to contain what man has thought out for himself about himself or God…”• “…only when the pure gratuity of love has been recognized can one speak of it in terms of fulfillment.
Love and Beauty• “The two related poles are surpassed in Revelation, where the divine Logos descends to manifest and interpret himself as love, as agape, and therein as the Glory.”
God is Love• “To believe that there is love, absolute love, and that there is nothing beyond it.”
God• “In the light of the sign of God who annihilated himself to become man and to die forsaken, it becomes possible to perceive why God came forth from himself and became the creator of the world; expressing his absolute being and revealing as unfathomable love his perfect freedom, which is not an absolute beyond being, but the height, the depths, the length and breadth of being itself.”
Summary1. God reveals Himself through the creation of the universe, and particularly in the human person2. God reveals himself definitively through Christ3. God inspires the scriptures, guides the Church in interpretation through the “living” tradition.4. God enables the reception of His very self by the person through the Holy Spirit5. Love is the inner dynamism of this revelation and is alone capable of reaching humanity
Dei Verbum• 10. Sacred tradition and Sacred Scripture form one sacred deposit of the word of God, committed to the Church.• Holding fast to this deposit the entire holy people united with their shepherds remain always steadfast in the teaching of the Apostles, in• the common life,• in the breaking of the bread• and in prayers (see Acts 2, 42, Greek text),
Dei Verbum• so that holding to, practicing and professing the heritage of the faith, it becomes on the part of the bishops and faithful a single common effort. (7)
Dei Verbum (Old Testament)• 14. In carefully planning and preparing the salvation of the whole human race the God of infinite love, by a special dispensation, chose for Himself a people to whom He would entrust His promises.• First He entered into a covenant with Abraham (see Gen. 15:18) and, through Moses, with the people of Israel (see Ex. 24:8).• To this people which He had acquired for Himself, He so manifested Himself through words and deeds as the one true and living God that Israel came to know by experience the ways of God with men.• Then too, when God Himself spoke to them through the mouth of the prophets, Israel daily gained a deeper and clearer understanding of His ways and made them more widely known among the nations (see Ps. 21:29; 95:1-3; Is. 2:1-5; Jer. 3:17).• Development of Revelation
Dei Verbum• 15. The principal purpose to which the plan of the old covenant was directed was to prepare for the coming of Christ, the redeemer of all and of the messianic kingdom, to announce this coming by prophecy (see Luke 24:44; John 5:39; 1 Peter 1:10),• and to indicate its meaning through various types (see 1 Cor. 10:12).• Now the books of the Old Testament, in accordance with the state of mankind before the time of salvation established by Christ, reveal to all men the knowledge of God and of man and the ways in which God, just and merciful, deals with men.• Three implications of Revelation
Dei Verbum• 15 These books, though they also contain some things which are incomplete and temporary, nevertheless show us true divine pedagogy.• 16. God, the inspirer and author of both Testaments, wisely arranged that the New Testament be hidden in the Old and the Old be made manifest in the New.