Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Galatians 6:16

I could not concur with Mike more on his comments on Gal. 6:16. Especially the comment: "Thus using "Israel" in a non-ethnic sense is possible for Jewish authors."
It seems almost absurd to think that Paul, having argued for the unity of Jew and Gentile would as a finishing blow undermine his entire argument but separating the two. G. K. Beale's article: Peace and Mercy Upon the God of Israel was very helpful in explaining much of the backdrop to Paul's argument.
This does lead to the vexing question of what to do with Romans 11:25-26. I part ways with many of my friends when reading this section. Wright has hit the mark for me on the whole of Romans 9-11, as opposed to Dodd - who thought it was just a separate sermon added in for good measure!

1 comment:

Chris Tilling said...

I must say, I also concur with Wright, at least provisionally - and I say 'provisionally' as most of my exegetical decisions are so, and I am open to being persuaded otherwise, especially on this matter.

And let me tell you, Wright's position is not flavour of the month in Germany. Given this nation's history, most Christians I've met are quite fervently

· pro-present-state-Israel-as-literal-fulfilment-of-prophecy
· maintaining that Israel has a special role in the plan of God apart from the Church
· gathering for prayer meetings simply 'to bless' Israel - so they get blessed.
· swarming to teachers who are 'Messianic Jews'

Israel flags will be hung up in many churches, and many books are written at a popular level advising all of the above and more.

I struggle with this. And if I'm honest, I feel all the more sympathetic towards Wright's argument because I'm surrounded by Christians doing such things.

At a more theological level, there are those attempting to deny any need for mission among the Jews. I believe this is the official position of the Lutheran church - may be wrong on that one though. The Jews, they insist, have their own Sonderweg, or 'special way'. I struggle even more with this!

The best treatment I have found on this subject is the very sensitively written Israel in the Plan of God by Steve Motyer.