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Some Thoughts on Defining Reception History and the Future of Biblical Studies

The task of the biblical scholar is to read a given interpretation with a degree of empathy, a certain amount of humility, and, if appropriate, with a willingness to interact critically and/or polemically with what they find. We should accept that the biblical scholar offering an interpretation of how, say, Paul and his audience understood Romans in their context is as enmeshed as the biblical scholar attempting to account for, say, Johnny Cash’s interpretation of the Bible, or the story of Jephthah’s daughter’s reception by the AmaNazaretha in South Africa.

See Also: Reception History and Biblical Studies (Bloomsbury T&T Clark, 2015).

By William John Lyons
University of Bristol
August 2015

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