Thursday, January 24, 2013

Origen on the Inspiration of Holy Scripture

 This is according to the Greek translation of Origen.
"And now we must add that it was after the advent of Jesus that the inspiration of the prophetic words and the spiritual nature of Moses' law came to light. For before the advent of Christ it was not at all possible to bring forward clear proofs of the divine inspiration of Scripture. But the advent of Jesus led those who might have suspected that the law and the prophets were not divine to the clear conviction that they were composed by the aide of heavenly grace.

{paragraph break in Greek}

And he who approaches the prophetic words with care and attention will feel from his very reading a trace of their divine inspiration and will be convinced by his own feelings that the words which are believed by us to be from God are not the compositions of men" (1).
Apparently, these problems were going on back then, particularly with the rise of Marcionism. Origen appears to be arguing for what we would call a Christocentric hermeneutic. Christian Smith defines this principle as following: "the purpose, center, and interpretive key to Scripture is Jesus Christ" (2). Simply put, the only thing by which Scripture makes sense is Jesus.



1. Origen, "On First Principles" pgs264-5.

2. Christian Smith, "The Bible Made Impossible" pg97.

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