What is the difference between the historical-critical method and the historical-grammatical method?

I could never figure out the distinction, is it that the historical-critical method focuses on source and redaction criticism, while the historical-grammatical method focuses on the text strictly and how it would be heard by its audience?

Comments

  • Martin54Martin54 Shipmate
    Yeah that.
  • Martin54Martin54 Shipmate
    But the latter tends to a conservative faith position.
  • I could never figure out the distinction, is it that the historical-critical method focuses on source and redaction criticism, while the historical-grammatical method focuses on the text strictly and how it would be heard by its audience?

    There are several layers of historical criticism:

    Oral Criticism which looks at how a story was verbally passed until it was written down Many of the stories of Jesus were passed from community to community before they were written.

    Source criticism--where did the pericope come from--are there similar stories in other cultures

    Textual Criticism which looks at how close to we can come to the original text.

    Form Criticism--what literary form that is being used? An example would be Genesis 1 which appears to be a creedal statement. Whereas Genesis two is more of a mythical statement

    Tradition Criticism which looks at how a story may have changed over time, as it was passed down from one generation to another.

    Redaction Criticism which looks at how the stories are combined--such as the story of Noah and the Flood. Looks like there are two separate flood stories that are combined.

    And Canonical Criticism which looks at the final form of the book and why it became a part of the Biblical Canon while other books were passed over.

    I could probably add that understanding the meaning of a word in the context of the story is important. It is good to have an understanding of Hebrew, Greek--- even Aramaic as you get down to the nitty-gritty of a text because there is a lot of nuances we miss when we rely on an English translation.

    Then it is also good to see how the understanding of a text is interpreted through the generations from the church fathers through the Reformers to modern day theologians.

  • Forgive a double post. To the point of the historical-grammatical method:

    Many who practice the historical-grammatical method use the inductive method, a general three-fold approach to the text: observation, interpretation, and application. Each step builds upon the other, which follows in order. The first step of observation involves an examination of words, structure, structural relationships and literary forms. After observations are formed, then the second step of interpretation involves asking interpretative questions, formulating answers to those questions, integration and summarization of the passage. After the meaning is derived through interpretation, the third step of application involves determining both the theoretical and practical significance of the text and appropriately applying this significance to today's modern context.
Sign In or Register to comment.