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Conclusions and ramifications

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Chapter Summary

This conclusory chapter of the book examines the interpretive tradition; what general trends are evident and what is the broad purpose of these interpretive traditions? The chapter considers the cultural ramifications of the allegorical interpretation; how effective was it and what cultural influence did it leave in its wake? It describes the continuing significance of the allegory; does it bear modern significance for the Christ/culture question? The story of the development of the despoliation traditions is one of increasing complexity, heightened sophistication and developing allegory. The increasing level of sophistication reflects a concomitant increase in biblical knowledge on the part of intellectual pagan or heretical antagonists. On the literal plane, Philo tightens up the "fair wage" argument by insisting on the unfair and immoral enslavement of the Jews. The allegorical interpretation of the story continues to inform Christian theology especially in terms of the Christ/Culture question.

Keywords:biblical text; Christian theology; cultural ramifications; Jews; pagan literature; Philo



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