Exploring the Implications of Jewish Roots for Christians: Introduction
James C. Whitman, CJCS President
Years ago a Pastor friend of mine confided his uneasiness with my insistence that if the primary rule of sound biblical interpretation is
the Bible can never mean what it never meant
then knowing the language and culture of Jesus is a necessary discipline to aid in our understanding of Scripture. “Do you realie the implications of what you!re saying"# he asked as we parted. $o this day % still appreciate the &alue of the 'uestion( not only because it represents intellectual honesty and pastoral concern( but because it is the right one.$he word
points us to possible conse'uences inherent in an idea( usually ones that might not be clear initially )keep in mind the results can be good( bad or neutral*. So when my daughter says she!s going to spend some time laying out in the sun a reasonable implication is she!s going to add some color to her fair skin( either brown or red+ %nterestingly( the final outcome will be based in part on how well she understood( prepared for and acted on her initial thought.Yeshua uses word pictures to help his maturing disciples identify the need to continuously reassess the radical implications of his call on their life(
For which of you, desiring to build a tower, does not first sit down and count the cost, whether he has enough to complete it?
What king, going out to encounter another king in war, will not sit down first and deliberate whether he is able?
),uke -:/012-*. $o my mind( a con&incing case can be made that much of what we ha&e in the 3ew $estament letters are the apostles wrestling with the implications of the 4aster!s words and works5 addressing how to li&e in the light of his life( death( and resurrection.%n an audio seminar entitled
Dwight Pryor proposes an analogy that is e6tremely helpful when considering why Jewish roots )a shorthand e6pression for proper research into the 7ebrew language and the culture associated with %srael during the Second $emple period and how that relates to Jesus( his apostles( and ultimately the 8hurch* is an essential dimension of 3ew $estament biblical studies for e&ery disciple. 7is picture can also help identify the implications within the ideas.$he analogy Dwight uses comes from the sporting world )he really en9oyed the annual $e6as &s. klahoma college football ri&alry* and is that of the re&erse camera &iewpoint. ;ach play can be &iewed from the main camera angle and carefully re&iewed from the re&erse or opposite camera angle( often with startling results.7e highlighted three possible benefits when you look at the same e&ent from a different camera angle: the main &iew may be confirmed as correct( the main &iew may be missing such a key piece of information that wrong conclusions can be drawn if used by itself(