Sunday, December 10, 2006

More on Divorce in the Gospels

Let's return to the 'husband divorces wife' verses in the Gospels. It always has the appearance of the other woman, i.e. the new wife. (Mat 5:32, 19:9, Mar 10:11, and Luk 16:18.) See the 12-09-06 post on this:

In the first scenario of that post:

i) Those verses can be read as the husband taking interest in the other woman then divorcing and remarrying.

Mat 19:9, Mar 10:11, and Luk 16:18 are accounts of Jesus' responses to the questioning by the Pharisees on divorce. In the 1st century AD there was a debate amongst competing schools of thought in the Jewish community. This was between two different interpretations of the Torah, Hillel vs. Shammai.

Hillel headed the Sanhedrins, Shammai later succeeded him. In terms of interpretations of Jewish law, Hillel was a liberal and Shammai was a conservative.

David Instone-Brewer has examined this issue in many web-based and print publications. Here is a friendly review of his book.

I say friendly because I haven't found any negative ones out there yet. I'd like to see valid criticisms of his historical accuracies and interpretations. Please post them in the comments section if you find them.

I'll write more on Hillel vs. Shammai in the next blog post. I'll also comment on scenario (ii) of the 12-09-06 post.

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