Landscape of the Bible
The second strategy employed by the Church in her effort to silence the voice of the Jewish prophets is by misrepresenting the literary structure of the Bible. As it is with any work of literature, the Jewish Bible contains highlights and climaxes. The prophets used various literary devices to emphasize certain events and certain teachings. Having a storyline slowly build up towards a certain event is one device used by the prophetic narrator to direct the reader’s attention to a given point (e.g. the Sinai revelation in Exodus 20). Repeating a teaching again and again is another literary device that the prophets used to underline a given teaching (e.g. the universal principles of justice and charity). Pointing back to a specific teaching, reiterating and elaborating, is yet another method that the prophets used to help us see the importance of a given truth (e.g. the Sinai revelation as per Deuteronomy 4).
The Church ignores the literary structure that is inherent in the Bible itself. Instead the Church presents its own version of the “highlights” of the Jewish Bible. These are passages or verses that, when read out of context, seem to support one Christian doctrine or another. The Church promotes the non-contextual reading of these solitary passages as if they were the central teachings of the Jewish Bible. The Church’s exaltation of the alleged “virgin birth” of Isaiah 7:14, is a perfect illustration of this strategy. A contextual reading of this verse will reveal that this prophecy has nothing to do with the Messiah and a correct translation will prove that there is no virgin mentioned in the verse. But in complete disregard for the literary structure of the Jewish Bible, the Church has for centuries pointed to this verse as if it were the climax of human history. By exalting this passage, the Church has successfully distorted the literary landscape of the Jewish Bible in the minds of many readers.
Through the implementation of these various strategies, the Church has endeavored to silence the voice of the Jewish prophets.
(Read the full article here – http://yourphariseefriend.wordpress.com/christianity-unmasked/ )