Tuesday, July 7, 2015

"Collected Writings on Scripture": Blogging Through Carson - Final Word on Redaction Criticism

"Collected Writings on Scripture": Blogging Through Carson - Introduction 
"Collected Writings on Scripture": Blogging Through Carson - The Canonization of Scripture
"Collected Writings on Scripture": Blogging Through Carson - The New Hermeneutics
"Collected Writings on Scripture": Blogging Through Carson - Faith and Practice
"Collected Writings on Scripture": Blogging Through Carson - Walter Bauer Thesis
"Collected Writings on Scripture": Blogging Through Carson - Progressive Revelation
"Collected Writings on Scripture": Blogging Through Carson - On Redaction Criticism
"Collected Writings on Scripture": Blogging Through Carson - Final Word on Redaction Criticism


Near the end of his chapter on redaction criticism, DA Carson in Collected Writings on Scripture answers the question "How legitimate, or illegitimate, is redaction criticism as a literary tool?" (173) He answers:
If its application to questions of authenticity depends on its roots n radical form criticism, the answer mus surely be that redaction criticism is well-nigh useless. It can pick out eccentric bits here and there; but even then the distorted picture of Jesus thus drawn varies enormously from scholar to scholar. Redaction criticism that ignores the brevity of time between Jesus and the Evangelists, that utilizes comparative studies of oral tradition over centuries when it is dealing with a combination of written and oral tradition over decades at most, that disallows any firm connection between Jesus and Judaism or Jesus and the church, that depends on dogmatic certainties regarding the synoptic problem,and that disallows the ipissima vox just because the idiom is that of the Evangelist is methodologically bankrupt and should be abandoned forthwith by all. (173)
I agree and do not believe more needs to be said.
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