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Paper Topic:

DQ#1 Religion


The process of division and subdivision into so many denominations experienced by Christianity has been brought about by the textual complexity of its single , sacred text , the Holy Bible . Christian scholars involved in the interpretation of the biblical passages could not agree on a single , common method of understanding their real meanings . The bible became the subject of intense debate which stayed unresolved , resulting to the burgeoning of Christian denominations

In the eighteenth century , perhaps in to simplify matters , there emerged in Western Europe an approach of studying the bible

strictly from a historical perspective . This approach , which involves interpreting the writings found in the bible within their historical context using the literary method is , until now , acceptable to most Roman Catholics , some Orthodox Christians , and Protestants (Fisher 2005

However , in the 19th and 20th centuries , Christian thinkers started turning to hermeneutics , the study of scripture interpretation which was started by the Jewish rabbis sometime between the 2nd and 3rd centuries CE . Biblical hermeneutics was itself subdivided into two approaches The first approach interprets the biblical text according to their literal meanings while , the second approach looks for the allegorical meaning of the texts (Fisher , 2005

One very radical departure from the traditional interpretation of the bible was made by the Gnostic Christian movement of the second century CE , which taught that Jesus was somewhat of an elitist because his teachings could only be fully understood by spiritually mature people and were , in fact , given to initiates only . This prompted the Christian Church to consider mere possession of Gnostic texts as a crime committed against its laws (Fisher , 2005


Fisher , M .P (2005 . Christianity . Living Religions , Sixth Edition (pp 284-361 . Pearson

Education , Inc...

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