Tradition and Innovation in Biblical Interpretation

Studies Presented to Professor Eep Talstra on the Occasion of his Sixty-Fifth Birthday

Series:

The theme of this volume in honour of Eep Talstra is ‘Tradition and Innovation in Biblical Interpretation’, with an emphasis on the innovative role of computer-assisted textual analysis. It focusses on the role of tradition in biblical interpretation and of the innovations brought about by ICT in reconsidering existing interpretations of texts, grammatical concepts, and lexicographic practices. Questions addressed include: How does the role of exegesis as the ‘clarification of one’s own tradition, in order to understand choices and preferences’ (Talstra) relate to the critical role which Scripture has towards this tradition? How does the indebtedness to tradition of computer-driven philology relate to its innovative character? And how does computer-assisted analysis of the biblical texts lead to new research methods and results?
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Biographical Note

Willem Th. van Peursen, Ph.D. (1999) in Semitic Languages, Leiden University, is associate professor of Old Testament at Leiden University. His publications include The Verbal System in the Hebrew Text of Ben Sira (Brill, 2004) and Language and Interpretation in the Syriac Text of Ben Sira (Brill, 2007).

Janet W. Dyk, Ph.D. (1994) in General Linguistics, VU University Amsterdam, is assistant professor of Bible Translation at the VU University and senior researcher at the Werkgroep Informatica, with emphasis on Hebrew and Syriac syntax. Her publications include Participles in Context (Amsterdam, 1994).

Table of contents

List of Contributors

Preface
Janet Dyk and Wido van Peursen

1. Tradition and Innovation in Biblical Scholarship: An Introduction
Wido van Peursen and Janet Dyk

PART ONE: TRADITION AND INNOVATION IN THE BIBLE ITSELF
2. A Story of Three Prophets: Synchronic and Diachronic Analysis of Jeremiah 26
Joep Dubbink
3. ‘Against you, Daughter of Babylon!’ A Remarkable Example of Text-Reception in the Oracle of Jeremiah 50–51
Eric Peels
4. ‘Reading Jeremiah Makes Me Angry!’ The Role of Jeremiah 32[39]:36–41 in Transformation within the ‘Jeremianic’
Tradition
Janneke Stegeman
5. Beyond ‘Singers and Syntax’: Theological and Canonical Reflections on Psalm 8
Carl J. Bosma
6. Where is God? Romans 3:13–18 as an Addition to Psalm 14
Eveline van Staalduine–Sulman
7. Reading Qohelet as Text, Author, and Reader
Timothy Walton
8. Tradition through Reading—Reading the Tradition: Reflections on Eep Talstra’s Exegetical Methodology
Louis Jonker

PART TWO: TRADITION AND INNOVATION IN THE RECEPTION OF THE BIBLE
9. Between Stigmatizing and Idolizing the Bible: On the Reception of Genesis 12:10–20; 20; 26:1–11
Cornelis Houtman
10. ‘Out of Egypt I Have Called My Son’: Matthew 2:15 and Hosea 11:1 in Dutch and American Evangelical
Interpretation
Gert Kwakkel
11. Daniel’s Four Kingdoms in the Syriac Tradition
Wido van Peursen
12. The Identity of Israel’s God: The Potential of the So-called Extra-Calvinisticum
Cornelis van der Kooi
13. A Jewish Childbirth Amulet from the Bibliotheca Rosenthaliana
Margaretha Folmer

PART THREE: TRADITION AND INNOVATION IN LINGUISTIC AND COMPUTATIONAL APPROACHES TO THE BIBLE
14. Computer-Assisted Tools for Textual Criticism
Emanuel Tov
15. On Biblical Hebrew and Computer Science: Inspiration, Models, Tools, and Cross-Fertilization
Ulrik Sandborg-Petersen
16. Persuasive Hebrew Exercises: The Wit of Technology-Enhanced Language Learning
Nicolai Winther-Nielsen
17. Judging Jephthah: The Contribution of Syntactic Analysis to the Interpretation of Judges 11:29–40
Klaas Spronk
18. Masoretic Tradition and Syntactic Analysis of the Psalms
Luis Vegas Montaner
19. Who is Speaking—Who is Listening? How Information Technology Can Confirm the Integrity of the Text
Oliver Glanz
20. Jerusalem’s Comforters in Isaiah 40:1–2: Participant Tracking in a Prophetic Text
Reinoud Oosting
21. Hebrew hāyāh: Etymology, Bleaching, and Discourse Structure
Frank Polak
22. The Lexeme סָבִיב
Christo H. J. van der Merwe
23. Language, Structure, and Strategy in Isaiah 53:1–6: אָכֵן , Word Order, and the Translator
Lénart J. de Regt
24. אָבִי in Job 34:36
Constantijn J. Sikkel

Dissertations under the Guidance of Eep Talstra
Publications by Eep Talstra
Index of Sources
Index of Modern Authors

Readership

All those interested in the processes that were at work in the formation of the Bible, its history of interpretation and the challenges of combining biblical scholarship with computer technology.

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