On the “so what?” of hermeneutic methodology…

November 16, 2008

This has been a reoccurring question for me. If I settle on a method that is literary-canonical instead of grammatical-historical, why does it really matter? Authorial intent instead of sensus plenior, who cares?

What difference does it make to the congregation that one day I hope to shepherd?

The Apostle Peter says there is significance. 1 Peter 1:10-12 is about hermeneutics. He tells us something amazing about the prophets, and then he tells us “therefore…”

Peter writes that the prophets knew that they were writing for us about the “sufferings of Christ and the subsequent glories.” He tells us that they were writing for us about the gospel message we have heard. And then he says, “Therefore… set your hope fully on the grace that will be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ” (1:13). The OT authors intended what they wrote about Christ to be for you, so then (Aorist Active Imperative 2nd plural) “you set your hope fully” on Christ. You believe completely, unwaveringly. You exert a relentless faith in Jesus Christ and the grace that is yours in Him.

This is the pastoral application and its beautiful significance. This is the “so what?” described by the apostle… The authorial understanding of 1:10-12 enkindles our faith in Jesus Christ and all that He is for us.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: