Saturday, 14 February 2009

Who should be allowed to read the Bible?

As a former student of Philip Davies, I have a huge admiration for him. His persistent challenge to uncritical faith-based readings of the Bible is one which has gone deep inside me and doubtless informs my own teaching.
I remain a person of faith who studies the Bible.
Is this an anachronism? I maintain not.
This discussion over at Cafe Apocalypsis is worth reading.
I particularly like this quote from Francis Watson:

“This rigidly-enforced distinction between the perspectives of insider and outsider is not observed in other academic disciplines in the humanities or in the social sciences. If it strictly enforced this distinction, biblical studies would be an anomaly. . . . In the study of music, there need be no tension between the technical analysis of a musical composition and its performance; music-lovers and practising [sic] musicians (insiders) are not compelled to adopt an exclusively ‘external’ approach to music as an academic discipline.”

Damn right!

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