The Bible is made up of a library of books that came into existence over hundreds of years. Biblical hermeneutics asks how we can approach and interpret this inspired corpus to hear God’s address today.
A Brief History
The first of The Scripture and Hermeneutics consultations took place in Cheltenham in April 1998. The theme for this meeting was the crisis in biblical interpretation and the sort of answers to it being proposed by advocates of speech act theory such as Anthony Thiselton, Nicholas Wolterstorff and Kevin Vanhoozer, all of whom were present. We were not agreed at this consultation whether speech act theory has the resources to take biblical interpretation forward, but it became clear that any attempt to renew biblical interpretation in the academy would require a process with multiple consultations to address the key areas we thought required attention.
Thus was born The Scripture and Hermeneutics Seminar, a project based in Theology and Religious Studies at The University of Gloucestershire, where it was headed up by Craig Bartholomew. Our second consultation was held in September 1999 at Selwyn College, Cambridge, at which Prof Brevard Childs and Prof Walter Brueggemann were present. The theme of that consultation was the crisis in biblical interpretation. Not all of us were agreed that there was a crisis but we all agreed that a renewal of biblical interpretation was urgent, hence the title of the first volume, Renewing Biblical Interpretation.
From 1998 – 2008 the Seminar was a partnership project between British and Foreign Bible Society and The University of Gloucestershire. Later in the process Baylor University and Redeemer University College joined in the venture as partners. In its first phase the Seminar identified eight topics that required attention and each year for eight years it organised an international, interdisciplinary seminar somewhere in the world to address one of these key issues. A volume in the Scripture and Hermeneutics Series (Paternoster and Zondervan) emerging from each consultation was published each year (volumes). The final volume in the Series, The Bible and the University, was published in 2007.
Since the completion of its initial eight volume series SAHS has continued to publish, producing Hearing the Old Testament: Listening for God’s Address (Eerdmans), edited by Craig G Bartholomew and David Beldman, and in 2016 A Manifesto for Theological Interpretation (Baker Academic) appeared, edited by Craig Bartholomew and Heath Thomas.
More recently SAHS has met annually on the Friday afternoon of SBL.
In 2016 and 2017 SAHS focused on the theme of the kingdom of God. In 2018 and 2019 it will return to ethics. In 2019 SAHS plans to revisit the rich and fertile work of Oliver O’Donovan with a focus on his recent trilogy of books.
Committee: Dr. Heath Thomas (Oklahoma Baptist University); Dr. David Beldman (Redeemer University College); Dr. A.J. Culp (Malyon College, Australia); Dr. Matthew Emmerson (Oklahoma Baptist University); Revd. Dr. William Olhausen (Church of Ireland Theological Institute, Dublin); Luke Wisely (PhD candidate, University of Cambridge).
Contact details: Heath Thomas email@example.com
We are excited to host our session on MONDAY, 11/19/2018 from 9:00-11:30 AM. This new time is due to SAHS (IBR) jointly sponsoring its event with the Theology of Hebrew Scriptures Group (SBL). The event engages Jeremiah Unterman's provocative new monograph, Justice for All: How the Jewish Bible Revolutionized Ethics. We will explore each section in Unterman’s work, uncovering the interpretative framework that undergird his reading of: God and world, revelation at Sinai, the ethics of the disadvantaged, morality over ritual, understanding of repentance, and the establishment of hope. Our stellar lineup will provide a robust exploration and discussion. All are warmly invited!
Heath Thomas, Oklahoma Baptist University, Presiding
Peter Williams, Tyndale House (Cambridge), Panelist (15 min)
A.J. Culp, Panelist (15 min)
Luke Wisley, University of Cambridge, Panelist (15 min)
Break (10 min)
Dru Johnson, The King's College (New York), Panelist (15 min)
Marvin Sweeney, Claremont School of Theology, Panelist (15 min)
Soo J. Kim, America Evangelical University, Panelist (15 min)
Jeremiah Unterman, Respondent (20 min)
Discussion (30 min)