I have had to read several books on hermeneutical approach. This one was not significantly different than the others: read the text, read the text, read the text, and make good decisions taking into consideration the socio-economic, cultural, and religious background the text was grounded in.
Sounds simple right?
Well it’s pretty complicated. Here are somethings that Doriani does different than other hermeneutic texts I’ve read:
- Every hermeneutic wants the reader to understand that context is key. Doriani is no different. However, he does utilize a slightly different method for understand this which is spelled out in the mnemonic device, “CAPTOR.” That is, Context, Analysis, Problems, Themes, Obligations, and Reflection. To me, some of these seem really forced and others are absolutely necessary. At its essence, this scheme is what most hermeneutic texts revolve around but it’s package in this unique way.
- One thing that I thought really benefited me from other texts I’ve read on this subject is wrapping your mind around the fact that you cannot simply allow a text to read the way you think it should read. In other word, context, context, context. I felt like Doriani did some of that, but there was not as much emphasis as I thought there might be in my own experience.
There are other minor points, but I want to get down to this: I think there are better texts out there on this subject to help prepare both the layman and the scholar for interpreting a passage of Scripture. Doriani’s text is fine in its own right, I just prefer the texts I’ve already written. Perhaps to those who haven’t studied this at all this method would be appealing.
For that reason, 4/5.