From: Theresa J List (email@example.com)
Date: Mon Jul 01 1996 - 01:07:06 EDT
Greetings! I had two different professors at Seminary who were
completely at odds with each other. One liked to look at the full
flavor of meanings which a word or phase could have and appriciate the
rich variations in the shades of meaning leant to a text. He saw most
such instances (expecially pauline) as ambiguity intended by the
speaker/author for didactic purposes. That axiom applied to this issue
would leave Peter going, "More than what? The other disciples? (He
would ponder his mistakes in claiming so earlier). Or the fishing
business? (What would he ponder here?) Or more than these guys love
you? (Ohh, he's smart to contemplate that based on past evidence to the
contrary as well). So the ambiguity would serve Christ's point, both in
making Peter question His specific intent, and in making the READER do
The other professor thought that was hogwash and a lame excuse out of
struggling with exegesis!
My vote (admittedly, probably colored as much my theology , based on my
views about Scriptural innerancy, as by exegesis) is to assume
intentionality behind ambiguitiy in most cases ... but to admit with
Freud, "Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar," i.e., sometimes there's no
intentionality to be found.
Does anyone have a qualified opinion as to the exegetical validity of
"assumed intentionality in being vague" theory?
God's Peace and Godspeed!
Deaconess Theresa List
Hispanic Missionary at Large
LC-MS MN S
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