Wednesday, March 17, 2010

From The Prophet's Mouth To Students' Eyes

My students in Prophets and Prophecy are writing papers due Monday that chronicle the steps involved in the biblical journey beginning with an oracle from Jeremiah's lips to the student reading a verse from Jeremiah in an English translation. After a long conversation, the dry erase board at the end of class looked something like this:

Jeremiah speaks > Baruch writes it down > Dtr and others redact > Very messy period that we know little about > Earliest textual witnesses such at Dead Sea Scrolls and LXX > Later textual witnesses such as Vulgate and Masoretic Texts > English translation such as New Revised Version > Their eyes at 3 AM in a dorm room.

I'm looking forward to reading the papers and am happy thus far with the choice of topic. It's been a very good exercise to demonstrate that there is no such thing as THE Bible. I believe that if Jeremiah could time travel and read the biblical book attributed to him, he would shake his head and sigh.

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