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清教徒的釋經2

(2008-02-03 15:47:19)
标签:

教育

 

人的義務DUTY

 

    還有,《聖經》教導我們知道自己的義務。《聖經》對我們的教導,是要我們實行的。因此,我們研究《聖經》,必須以使自己生命井井有條為目標。我們若不斷的努力實行所學到的真理,上帝一定賜福給我們的研經。那麼。我們的知識必越來越深,越來越廣闊;不然的話,就落為空談,和理性的錯誤。 歐文說﹕

    Also, Scripture teaches us our duty.  Its instruction is for practice.  It must be studied, therefore, for the purpose of setting our lives in order.  And God will only prosper our study if we continually exercise ourselves to live by what we learn.  Then our knowledge will deepen and expand; but otherwise it will run out into sterile verbiage and mental error.  Owen says:

“聖潔福音真理的理念,若與聖潔生活習慣分開,不能活下去,至少不能發揚光大。 我們學習一切真理,都是為了實行,因此我們若去實行,必學習良多 (As we learn all to practice, so we learn much by practice)。 … 只有這樣,我們才會有把握,我們所學到的,所知道的,真正是真理。因此我們的主告訴我們﹕「人若立志遵著祂的旨意行,就必曉得這教訓或是出於上帝,或是我憑著自己說的」(約7﹕17)。…這樣的人必被帶領進入更多的知識。因為人在世上的年日,心思是能不斷領受亮光與知識的,只要正確地使用思想,和在順服上帝的事上不斷努力。若不是這樣,心思就很快充滿其它的觀念,以致真理的泉源不能把真理流進人的心中。”

The true notion of holy evangelical truths will not live, at least not flourish, where they are divided from a holy conversation.  As we learn all to practice, so we learn much by practice. …  And herein alone can we come unto the assurance, that what we know and learn is indeed the truth.  So our Saviour tells us, that “if any man do the will of God, he shall know the doctrine whether it be of God” (John 7:17). …  And hereby will they be led continually into farther degrees of knowledge.  For the mind of man is capable of receiving continual supplies in the increase of light and knowledge whilst it is in this world, if so be they are improved unto their proper use and in obedience unto God.  But without this the mind will be quickly stuffed with notions, so that no streams can descend into it from the fountain of truth.

 

因此,若要正確地解釋《聖經》,人必須敬虔,謙卑,常常禱告,有受教和順服的靈;不然,心思不論充滿著什麼觀念,都不可能明白屬靈的事實。

He who would interpret Scripture aright, therefore, must be a man of a reverent, humble, prayerful, teachable and obedient spirit; otherwise, however tightly his mind may be “stuffed with notions,” he will never reach any understanding of spiritual realities. 

 

 

六項解經原則

SIX PRINCIPLES OF BIBLE INTERPRETATION

 

    現在我們來看清教徒如何解釋《聖經》,可以用六點來歸納他們的原則﹕

We turn now to the Puritan’s approach to the task of interpretation itself.  Their governing principles may be summarized under the following heads:

 

[1] 按字意和文法解釋《聖經》。宗教改革者反對中世紀教會的作法;後者低看《聖經》的「字意」,追求《聖經》「屬靈」(喻意)的意思。宗教改革者堅持﹕《聖經》的字意 – 即文法上,自然的,作者的原意 – 乃是《聖經》的唯一意思。解經的目的,就是藉謹慎留意上下文和文法,找到此原意。清教徒完全同意。

[1]《Interpret Scripture literally and grammatically The Reformers had insisted, against the medieval depreciation of the “literal” sense of Scripture in favour of the various “spiritual” (allegorical) senses, that the literal – i.e., the grammatical, natural, intended – sense was the only sense that Scripture has, and that it was this sense that must be sought in exposition through careful attention to the context and grammar of each statement.  The Puritans fully agreed. 

 

你若想明白一段有爭議性經文的真正意思的話,要留意經文的完整性,其主題,和上下文。

If you would understand the true sense … of a controverted Scripture, then look well into the coherence, the scope and the context thereof. 

 

《聖經》除了在經文字句裏的意思以外,沒有其它的意思…要解釋任何人的心意,必須正確地了解他所用的字;這又須要我們認識他說話所用的語言,還有語言裏的一些慣用詞,以及一些造句和表達的方式…不了解原文為解經者帶來多麼多的困惑與錯誤…

There is no other sense in it [Scripture] than what is contained in the words whereof materially it doth consist. …  In the interpretation of the mind of anyone, it is necessary that the words he speaks or writes be rightly understood; and this we cannot do immediately unless we understand the language wherein he speaks, as also the idiotism [idiom] of that language, with the common use of and intention of its phraseology and expressions. …  And what perplexities, mistakes and errors, the ignorance of these original languages hath cast many expositors into … especially among those who pertinaciously adhere unto one translaton … might be manifested by instances … without number. 

 

    當然,有些經文的原意就是喻意的。清教徒是這樣對待《雅歌》。James Durham作出一些有趣的觀察﹕

Of course, there might be places in Scripture where the literal sense was itself allegorical.  The Puritans all regarded the Song of Solomon as a case in point, and James Durham has some interesting remarks on the subject:

 

我接受《雅歌》有字意的意思;可是我說,從歷史上的經文(即﹕雅歌)找出的,首先不是這「字意」,而是比喻和喻意中屬靈的意思,這就是《雅歌》在字意上的意義 (literal meaning)。因為什麼是字意上的意義?就是聖靈的原意,在一段經文流露出的,不論是直說還是喻意的,都從不同表達的方法綜納起來… 好像在解釋比喻上,《聖經》的喻意…是非常清楚的。

I grant it hath a literal meaning; but I say, that literal meaning is not … that which first looketh out, as in historical Scriptures … but that which is spiritually … meant by these allegorical and figurative speeches, is the literal meaning of this Song. … for a literal sense (as it is defined by Rivet out of the school-men) is that which floweth from such a place of Scripture, as intended by the Spirit in the words, whether properly or figuratively used, and is to be gathered from the whole complex of expressions together … as in the exposition of parables, allegories and figurative Scriptures is clear.

 

    可是 Durham指出,中世紀時期,不正當的靈意解經是另外一碼事﹕因為「喻意解經是一回事,解釋喻意的聖經是另一回事。」Durham認為,只當自己有充足理由認為是在解釋一段喻意的經文的時候,才喻意地解釋。

    But, Durham notes, this is quite different from the illegitimate allegorizing of which the medievals were guilty; for “there is a great difference between an allegorical exposition of Scripture and an exposition of allegorical Scripture.”  Durham expounds allegorically only when he has reason to think that it is an allegory that he is expounding. 

 

[2] 解釋《聖經》必須一致和諧。《聖經》既然是上帝的話,表達上帝唯一的旨意,它所宣稱的一切事都是真理,經文之間不可能有真正的衝突。特別注重表面的矛盾,是不敬虔的表現。Bridges 繼續說﹕

[2] Intepret Scripture consistently and harmonstically If Scripture is God’s word, the expression of a single divine mind, all that it says must be true, and there can be no real contradiction between part and part.  To harp on apparent contradictions, therefore, says Bridge, shows real irreverence.  Bridge continues:

 

You know how it was with Moses, when he saw two men fighting, one an Egyptian, and another an Israelite, he killed the Egyptian; but when he saw two Hebrews fighting, now, saith he, I will go and reconcile them, for they are brethren; why so, but because he was a good man, and gracious? 

同樣地,一位蒙恩的信徒看見《聖經》與埃及人,或異教徒作者,或旁經爭戰的時候,他來殺掉那位異教徒…埃及人或旁經;可是當他看到兩段經文之間有差異(看來如此,其實事實上不是這樣),蒙恩信徒說,噢,他們是弟兄,他們必須和好。我必須努力,盡力而為使他們和睦。若有人看見一些經文表面上的衝突的時候就利用機會來說,看,《聖經》有怎樣的矛盾;而不盡力取調和。這說明什麼?豈不是說明人性的敗壞,對主話語的惡意?因此,我們必須在這事上提防。

So also it is with a gracious heart; when he sees the Scriptures fighting with an Egyptian, and heathen author, or apocryphal, he comes and kills the heathen …. the Egyptian, or the apocrypha; but when he sees two Scriptures at variance (in view, though in truth not), Oh, saith he, these are brethren, and they may be reconciled, I will labour all I can to reconcile them; but when a man shall take every advantage of seeming difference in Scripture, to say, Do ye see what contradictions there are in this book, and not labour to reconcile them; what doth this argue, but that the corruption of a man’s nature, is boiled up to an unknown malice against the word of the Lord; take heed therefore of that.

 

令人深思熟慮的一點﹕非常準確的判斷。

It is a striking thought, and an acute diagnosis.

 

《聖經》既然是上帝一個心意的事實,因此﹕「解釋《聖經》無誤的原則就是《聖經》本身。因此,我們對經文真正和完整的意思有問題的時候,我們必須查考其它比較清楚的經文。」從這裏我們可以推出兩個原則。(一)不清楚的地方,由清楚的經訓來解釋。 歐文說﹕「這裏的準則乃是﹕對不清楚的經文的解釋,一定要符合《聖經》其它地方清楚的教導。若在這些比較不清楚的經文上提出一些怪異的教義,是非常危險的作法。」(二)邊緣性不清楚的事,以基要的,我們確信的真理來解釋,前者符合後者。因此,任何不「符合信仰的原則,要理問答裡的要點,信經,主禱文,十誡,和聖禮的教義」的解釋,都不可能是正確的。這兩項原則總稱為「信仰的類比」 (the analogy of faith),從羅馬書12﹕6取名(雖然可能不是使徒保羅的意思)。

Since Scripture is the unified expression of a single divine mind, it follows that “the infallible rule of interpretation of Scripture is the Scripture itself, and therefore, when there is a question about the true and full sense of any Scripture … it must be searched and known by other places that speak more clearly.”  Two principles derive from this.  (1) What is obscure must be interpreted by the light of what is plain.  “The rule in this case,” says Owen, “is that we affix no sense unto any obscure or difficult passage of Scripture but what is … consonant unto other expressions and plain testimonies.  For men to raise peculiar senses from such places, not confirmed elsewhere, is a dangerous curiosity.”  (2) Peripheral ambiguities must be interpreted in harmony with fundamental certainties.  No exposition of any text, therefore, is right which does not “agree with the principles of Religion, the points of Catechism set down in the Creed, the Lord’s Prayer, the Ten Commandments, and the doctrine of Sacraments.”  These two principles together comprised the rule of interpretation commonly termed “the analogy of faith,” a phrase borrowed – probably not in the apostle’s sense – from Romans 12:6.

 

上面兩個原則與《聖經》的形式有關;下面四個原則是關乎《聖經》的題目與內容。

Both the foregoing rules concern the form of Scripture; the next four have to do with its matter and content. 

   

    [3] 按著教義解釋《聖經》,以上帝為中心的解釋《聖經》。《聖經》是一本教義性的書;教導我們關於上帝,和受造物與上帝的關係。 Bridges在一段裏解釋雅各書所說的,《聖經》好像鏡子,同時帶出這個原則﹕

 Interpret Scripture doctrinally and theocentrically Scripture is a doctrinal book: it teaches us about God and created things in their relation to him.  Bridge brings this out in a passage where he develops James’ image of Scripture as a looking-glass:

   

When ye look upon a looking-glass, ye see three things, the glass, yourself, and all the other things, persons, stools or pictures that are in the room.  So in looking upon Scripture … ye see the truths that are therein contained concerning God and Christ.  There is God seen especially, and Christ seen; there also you see yourself, and your own dirty face; there also you see the creatures that are in the room with you, and their emptiness …

 

還有,《聖經》的觀點是以上帝為中心的﹕墮落的人認為自己是宇宙的中心,可是《聖經》顯示上帝才是中心,它同時正確地形容所有受造之物,包括人﹕萬物都藉著上帝,為上帝而生存。清教徒對我們最有幫助的一點,就是重新強調《聖經》以上帝為中心的立足點。他們實在掌握到這個原則。

Also, Scripture teaches a theo-centric standpoint: whereas fallen man sees himself as the centre of the universe, the Bible shows us God as central, and depicts all creatures, man included, in their proper perspective – as existing through God, and for God.  One of the points at which the Puritans can help us most is in the recovery of this God-centered standpoint of Scripture, which they themselves grasped so firmly.

 

[4] 按歷史順序的解釋《聖經》,以基督為中心的解釋。基督是「《聖經》真正的主題﹕所有經文都為基督作見證。基督是《聖經》的總結,《聖經》在每一頁裏,差不多在每一節裏,預言基督,預表基督,表明基督…《聖經》好像是包裹嬰孩主耶穌的布。」因此﹕(從略)

[4] Interpret Scripture christologically and evangelically Christ is the true subject-matter of Scripture: all was written to bear witness to him.  He is “the sum of the whole Bible, prophesied, typified, prefigured, exhibited, demonstrated, to be found in every leaf, almost in every line, the Scriptures being but as it were the swaddling bands of the child Jesus.”   Therefore:

 

Keep still Jesus Christ in your eye, in the perusal of the Scriptures, as the end, scope and substance thereof: what are the whole Scriptures, but as it were the spiritual swaddling clothes of the holy child Jesus?  1.  Christ is the truth and substance of all the types and shadows.  2. Christ is the substance and matter of the Covenant of Grace, and all administrations thereof; under the Old Testament Christ is veiled, under the New Covenant revealed.  3.  Christ is the centre and meeting place of all the promises; for in him the promises of God are yea and Amen.  4.  Christ is the thing signified, sealed and exhibited in the Sacraments.  5.  Scripture genealogies use to lead us on to the true line of Christ.  6.  Scripture chronologies are to discover to us the times and seasons of Christ.  7. Scripture-laws are our schoolmasters to bring us to Christ, the moral by correcting, the ceremonial by directing.  8.  Scripture-gospel is Christ’s light, whereby we hear and follow him; Christ’s cords of love, whereby we are drawn into sweet union and communion with him; yea it is the very power of God unto salvation unto all them that believe in Christ Jesus; and therefore think of Christ as the very substance, marrow, soul and scope of the whole Scriptures.

 

How richly the Puritans applied this evangelical principle of exegesis can only be appreciated by those who dig into the expository writings of such authors as Owen, Goodwin and Sibbes.

 

[5] 從經驗和實際來解釋《聖經》。從另一個角度來看,《聖經》是一本關乎屬靈經驗的書,清教徒在探討這層面上特別表現深度與智慧。《天路歷程》可以說是一本描述《聖經》在人的經歷方面所處理的問題的「圖畫索引」﹕信心,懷疑,誘惑,絕望,恐懼,盼望,與罪的掙扎,撒但的攻擊,屬靈喜樂的高峰,心靈被拋棄的乾旱地。

Interpret Scripture experimentally and practically The Bible is, from one standpoint, a book of spiritual experience, and the Puritans explored this dimension of it with unrivalled depth and insight.  Pilgrim’s Progress serves as a kind of pictorial index to the themes which they handled under this head – faith, doubt, temptation, despair, fear, hope, the fight with sin, the attacks of Satan, the peaks of spiritual joy, the dry waste of spiritual desertion. 

同樣地,《聖經》是非常實際的一本書,向人具體的情況說話﹕人在上帝面前的地位,充滿罪孽,污穢,無助;又告訴在這種情況中的人他應該相信什麼,作什麼會得到靈魂的健康;清教徒很清楚認識到,解經的時候必須維持這實際的取向。我們必須從《聖經》呈現教義的角度來教導《聖經》,也為《聖經》教導教義的目的來應用《聖經》。歐文在開始分析「稱義」的教義時說到這一點﹕

Equally the Bible is a practical book, addressing man in a concrete situation – as he stands before God, guilt, vile, helpless – and telling him in that situation what he must believe and do for his soul’s health; and the Puritans recognizes that this practical orientation must be retained in exposition.  Doctrines must be taught from the standpoint from which, and applied for the purpose for which, Scripture itself presents them.  Owen, as we observed earlier, makes this point as he embarks on his analysis of the doctrine of justification:

 

It is the practical direction of the consciences of men, in their application unto God by Jesus Christ, for deliverance from the curse due unto the apostate state, and peace with him … that is alone to be designed in the handling of this doctrine. …  And whereas we cannot either safely or usefully treat of this doctrine, but with respect unto the same ends for which it is declared, and whereunto it is applied, in the Scripture, we should no t… be turned aside from attending unto this case and its resolution, in all our discourses on this subject; For it is the direction, satisfaction, and peace of the consciences of men, and not the curiosity of notions or subtlety of disputations, which it is our duty to design.

 

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