Hebrew – Conceptual Approach vs. Greek/Roman
Western – Linear
The Hebrew mind views YAHUVEH quite differently from the systematic theological thinking of the West, which defines YAHUVEH’s and his work with creation in a linear manner.
The Western treatment of the ‘divine character’ attempts to explain inconsistencies and harmonize contradictions systematically.
The Hebrew mind was filled with wonder at the mystery of YAHUVEH. The vastness of YAHUVEH and his unfathomable ways left them awestruck.
Inconsistencies and contradictions are intimately related to human finite understandings of the infinite YAHUVEH’s. He is beyond human comprehension.
First century Hebrews approached YAHUVEH through an interactive associative mentality. They are connected now with another in continuous motion. One concept belongs to a complex of interactive ideas. (See Diagram) The fact that YAHUVEH is incomprehensible is very much a part of the Hebrew thought processes.
Western mind, however, explains everything but understands so little of the divine nature.
The Hebrew mind, on the other hand, is overpowered by the sense of wonder and amazement. It thrives on what seems as inconsistencies and contradictions of the one awe-inspiring YAHUVEH.
Paul had a conceptual approach to theology. It was not linear-abstract. His theological worldview is circular and interactive. A systematic approach to Paul draws a straight line (much like a time-line) and follows his reasoning from creation and the fall all the way along to the redemptive suffering of YAHUSHUA and the second coming.
On one hand, Paul views history as moving towards a goal of YAHUVEH’s final redemptive plan with ultimate judgment; on the other hand he views YAHUVEH through the prism of perplexing curiosity, which inspires wonder. In his contemplation of the mystery of YAHUVEH, like other Hebrew theologians of his day, the apostle is content to leave questions unanswered and inconsistencies unresolved.
The term TORAH expresses the highest dimension of Hebrew experience because it reveals the nature of YAHUVEH to His people. TORAH encompasses all that is known about YAHUVEH and his love for each individual created in the divine image.
As a Pharisee, the focal point of Paul’s thought was TORAH. For Paul, TORAH has not lost its force after the coming of YAHUSHUA, but now Hebrews and Goyim-Gentiles occupy their distinctive positions in the mystery of YAHUVEH’s higher plan.
PAUL’S CONCEPTUAL APPROACH:
A HEBREW WAY OF THINKING
PAUL’S CONCEPTUAL TEHOLOGY
Circular Thought – Not Linear
The Concepts are interactive:
In circular thought the conceptual theological ideas
Are connected together in continuous motion.
The focal point is YAHUSHUA as the goal of Torah.
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