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The Text and the Interpreter


"Apostolicity itself is a critical principle that brings its own 'hermeneutic of suspicion' to modern ideological critics.

"The text has rights over against its interpreters, some of whom stand poised to exploit, assault, and mug the text. When contemporary readers make themselves the absolute masters of the text, then the author has lost all rights of authorship. Authorial intent becomes subservient to contemporary ideological interests. Historians are not the absolute judges and arbiters of the documents of testimony. If it is God who is speaking, the text must be viewed as the judge and constrainer of the interpreter."

— Thomas C. Oden, Requiem — A Lament in Three Movements pages 73-74.

(I actually found this quote on the Internet a long time ago.)

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