Brady on reading the Bible deductively

Chris Brady – Targuman: Reading the Bible deductively (Gen 1)

…There are many things that the author(s) of Genesis does not tell us that we would really like to know…What this means for our practice of reading the Bible is that we must maintain a careful tension between reading the text carefully to find the subtle messages that the author is revealing to us and not reading too much into the text, particularly where it is silent on a subject. Thus the reference to the sun and the moon as the “greater” and “lesser” lights is both a powerful theological statement about the nature of these objects (they are mere creations, made by God) and a rejection of contemporary belief that shemesh and yareach were deities. But it does not tell us about any sort of divine battle or … I don’t know what it might be. We can only work with what we have in the text and while we can (and must) make certain conjectures it is imperative that the interpreter be honest about their limitations.

…our text never explicitly tells us anything about our central figure, God. We must deduce from other evidence whatever we might want to know about this figure…God is never introduced in any way. God is simply there, his existence is assumed and essential…What can we determine about God from the fingerprints left behind in creation? Read more

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