Redaction Criticism and Textual Criticism

Topics: Bible, Textual criticism, Old Testament Pages: 12 (4223 words) Published: November 7, 2011
Redaction Criticism and Textual Criticism


Imagine yourself excitedly waiting for a movie, about your favorite novel, to come out. Finally the day comes when it starts showing in the theatres. You used all your connections to be able to get premiere tickets for the movie. You are about to watch the movie about your favorite novel… Coming out of the theatres, you feel cheated. All the excitement, all the hype left you disappointed. You say to yourself, this isn’t what was in the novel, where the part about this, this part didn’t happen, and so on and so forth. You kept on ranting about it. You feel cheated. This happens a lot to people excitedly waiting for their favorite novel to go on the big screen just to be disappointed after watching it. How come movie directors and script writers change the book for the movies? Well first of all they can’t fit all of the details in the book in a movie, if they do, the movie would last for hours. Secondly, some of parts in the movie are change so that they’d be better suited for the movies. Of course these people need some “juicy” scenes to show in the movie so they insert things that never really happened in the book. Its normal that scenes are placed in movies just so they’d make it more Hollywood. Also there are times where the scenes we watch in the movies aren’t how we imagined them while reading. You imagine the main character handsomer or taller, or something else. You imagined the death more dramatic. A lot of these things are subject to how people envisioned or imagined them.

These insertions of details and scenes though don’t just happen in Hollywood, according to some scholars the Bible is also a victim of this, such a thing called redaction. They believe that the writers of the bible inserted details and other stuff to make the bible, or more so the words and life of Jesus more “miraculous” and “religious”. Also as we’ve discussed in class there are 3 ways to translate the bible. It could be dynamic, formal or paraphrase. Aside from the formal translation, both the dynamic and paraphrase translates the bible according to the interpretation of the translator, meaning he/she could’ve changed some points in the bible according to how the understood it or how they want to depict it. The formal, although is a direct translation, still isn’t really translated word for word because it is quite hard for readers to understand it and sometimes it wont make sense anymore, so even in formal, there are still some inputs from the translator. This is the second criticism the bible faces, textual criticisms; this is a criticism where the details in the translated bible is different from the actual version. We studied in class that we should study the bible in a theological frame of mind, that although the bible is said to be the Words of God, it is only free from error in the theological aspect. However people still continue to criticize it. Redaction Criticism

There were accounts claiming that redaction criticism was developed in Germany in the 1700s by a deist professor named Hermann Reimarus who taught oriental languages in Hamburg. He was completely against Christianity who claimed that Jesus is actually a failure and so the Apostles altered their stories to give Jesus the impression of being holy and miraculous. However, there were greater accounts that formal practice of redaction criticism began after World War 2 as this theory was said to be the sequel to Post World War 1’s form criticism, a theory that the writers of the gospel simply compiled tradition and no theological perspective were put in the process. Willi Marxsen was a professor of New Testament Introduction Science and Theology at the Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität Münster and a Lutherean theologian. In 1956, Willi Marxsen, alongside Hans Conzelmann, and G. Bornkamm formulated and created the reduction criticism due to his observance of the New Testament writings of authors...
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