TIP of the day: Why I don't use the Cross-Reference section of the Passage Guide - Part V

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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Posted: Sat, Jan 2 2016 5:09 PM

The next type of cross-references are called historical or story cross-references.  Here you as reader have several different concerns.

1. You need to know the historical event being referred to. By know I mean being able to answer the standard questions:

  • who, where, what, when, why and how OR
  • Quis, quid, quando, ubi, cur, quem ad modum, quibus adminiculis.(Who, what, when, where, why, in what way, by what means) see Hermagoras of Temnos OR
  • Quis, quid, cur, quomodo, ubi, quando, quibus auxiliis. (Who, what, why, how, where, when, with what) see Boethius

These questions, as you will see below generate a huge "pile" of cross-references.

2. You need to discern what aspect of that event or what cultural interpretation of that event is the reason for the reference to the event. This is not always easy but it is the task that winnows down the cross-references to a meaningful number. Some basic steps to assist:

  • Run a Bible search on the keyword used to invoke a historical event - often a person or place name.
  • Do a quick division of the references into three categories: (a) the actual narrative of the event (b) genealogies or lists including the event or person and (c) passages that invoke the event assuming a particular cultural understanding. The first set is useful for the 5W's understanding; the second set is sometimes useful to see similarities; the third set is the primary interest of cross-referencing as it relates to the meaning of the passage you are reading.

In this example, Exodus describes the actual event; the remaining references belong to the third set - cross-references.

3. To understand the event itself (5 W's) Logos provides the following tools:

  • Passge Guide: Biblical Events, Biblical People, Biblical Places, Biblical Things and Cultural Concepts
  • Tools: Atlas, Timeline, Bible Event Navigator (puts event in broad perspective)
  • Additional information: Factbook entries for each entity identified in the Passage Guide Sections.

4. Within the answering of the 5W's, watch for verses that add more details to the narrative. See The Rashi Workbook ==> Method of Other Verses ==> Further Details

Orthodox Bishop Hilarion Alfeyev: "To be a theologian means to have experience of a personal encounter with God through prayer and worship."

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