Lex Talionis (Part one)

Anyone who has visitied a FB page or an internet chat group where theology is discussed will, sooner or latter, come across a discussion on the Law. Yet, Biblical “Law”is a term that needs some definition since it can refer to “The Ten Commandments” or to what is called ” The Ceremonial Law” or to “Dietary Laws” ect. The list goes on.. However, Its an important discussion for it touches on the question of continuity between the Covenants or how the Old and New Testaments relate to one another.

Now its at this point its not a bad idea to think about how we interpret such things, for after all when we get into these sorts of discussions we are dealing with what theologians call “Hermeneutics”. Hermeneutics can be defined as the art of Biblical interpretation and as such it involves (at least in part) defining our presuppositions. So, how does that work and where to start? Or to put it another way around what lense should we use when we examine Scripture and does Scripture itself give us any clues?

It does in fact and Jesus Himself tells us what the key to interpretation is. Its Him. He says it in a couple of places but my favorite is the story of the disciples walking on the road to Emmaus shortly after the crucifixion. You probably know the story and about how the disciples were despondetly talking about Jesus death when suddenly they meet Him. Whats important to the present discussion is that it is there that Jesus tells His disciples and us that He is the point of “The Law and The Prophets” .

So the Bible is a story. we are part of the story true but we are not the most important part. Jesus is.

Next post Ill talk about how that works out and will do so with Jesus talking about the Law, more specifically what is called the “Lex talons” ir “Law of retribution.

I hope you will join me.

Published by Fr. Rogers Meredith

I am an Anglican Priest Canonically Resident in the Episcopal Diocese of Ft. Worth , Anglican Church of North America. .

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: