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Interpreting Scripture Through Scripture: Exegesis Based On Lexematic Association In The Dead Sea Scrolls And The Pauline Epistles

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Chapter Summary

This chapter pursues the question: what precisely is it that makes a Pauline or a Qumran exegesis resemble a gezerah shavah, and how far does this similarity extend? As regards the Dead Sea scrolls and New Testament, the combination of different scriptural passages on the basis of lexematic overlaps is found in both bodies of literature, and occasionally, conspicuous changes in the wording of a passage show very clearly that the lexematic association was made consciously. These combinations of biblical quotations could serve quite different purposes, the filling of a semantic gap being just one function besides others. And this seems to be the main reason for which one should avoid applying the term gezerah shavah to Qumran and New Testament exegesis - apart from the fact that rabbinic use of gezerah shavah was essentially limited to halakhic exegesis whereas Qumran and Pauline texts to which deal, rabbinically speaking, with haggadic matters.

Keywords: Dead Sea Scrolls; exegesis; gezerah shavah; interpreting scripture; lexematic association; New Testament; Pauline texts; Qumran; rabbinic use



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