Judaism has very systematic refined system of Hermeneutics (rules
for understanding the Scriptures).
Christianity differs not in having an alternate set of agreed upon
rules, but in having no agreed upon rules whatsoever!
As the Christian "Church Father" Jerome wrote:
The Jews insist upon a literal interpretation
of the Scripture based on thirteen rules,
but we know that the spiritual interpretation
is far superior.
With these words Jerome articulated well the Christitian
stance. "Literal interpretation" and "rules" which had been an
earmark of Jewish understanding had been abandoned by the "Church"
in favor of "the spiritual interpretation".
2Tim. 2:15 Justifies use of hermeneutics by indicating that there
is a right way to understand the scriptures.
The idea that there is a "right way" implies that there is a "wrong
But what are these "rules" that Christendom had abandoned so early
I have just written a foundational book which answers that question
Rightly dividing the Word of Truth
By James Scott Trimm
This book may well be the most complete guide to Hermeneutics
in print today.
This book will teach you Jewish Hermeneutics including:
* The need for hermeneutics.
* The Basic Principles of Hermeneutics
* The Rules of Logic
* Primary Logic Errors and how to avoid them
* The Four levels of understanding of a passage.
* The Peshar Method used at Qumran
* The Seven Rules of Hillel (and how they are used by NT writers)
* The Thirteen Rules of Ishmael
* The 32 Rules of Eliezer
* The Forms of Midrashic Exegesis (and examples of them in the NT)
* How the Hebrew Poetic forms can be an important key to
understanding a passage.
This book is a guide to Hermeneutics which will teach you the
material a Seminary student would learn, plus it will also teach you
what a Rabbinical student would learn in Yeshiva.
This book won't just teach you how to understand the scriptures.
It will teach you how to understand how to understand the scriptures.
It will not just teach you the rules and methods, but will give
examples, often from the "New Testament" of their implementation.
This is a foundational book, a manual everyone should have.