Tuesday, 30 August 2016
The Disclosure of Binding
The Creative Word: Canon as a Model for Biblical Education, Second Ed.,
Walter Brueggemann, Fortress Press, 2015, page 20-21
Starting from the text fragment, "What do these stones mean?", Brueggemann points to six variant forms of the same question with the Torah and Joshua. Remarking that their conrexts are all at different contexts in Israel, Brueggeman suggests that the all make the same point: "The beginnings of the Bible manifest concern for the educational process." He then goes on:
The six questiond and answers clearly are not objective historical reporting. Neither are they a dogmatic conclusion nor an exercise in literature to satisfy an aesthetic function. In part, they are aimed at worship, but worship as pedagogy, the engagement of the young in the normative claims of the community. These six exchanges show the binding of the generations, the urging towards a view of reality held by the older generation as definitional for the new generation. That it is urgent and normative and binding, that is, canonical, is evident in the closely related instruction:
And these words which I command you this day shall be upon your heart; and you shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way, and wheb you lie down and when you rise. (Deuteronomy 6:6-7)
"Such," says Brueggeman, "is the canonical process in the Torah of Israel.