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Old Testament Essays

On-line version ISSN 2312-3621
Print version ISSN 1010-9919


LOADER, James Alfred. The Bipolarity of Sapiential Theology. Old testam. essays [online]. 2013, vol.26, n.2, pp.365-383. ISSN 2312-3621.

It is shown that the wisdom of the sages represented in the Book of Proverbs pushes at the limits of wisdom's rational basis in such a way as to question its own possibilities. The assumption that the Book of Proverbs represents the affirming side of wisdom whereas the Books of Ecclesiastes and Job represent its critical counter-pole is queried. It is argued that the theological stance of the anthology of Proverbs is based on a default affirmative system with a critical counter-position grafted onto it. Conversely, in Ecclesiastes and Job the critical perspective is the main stance, while they nevertheless proceed from the same affirmative basis they find problematical. This basic tenet of biblical wisdom is brought to bear on Walter Brueggemann's thesis that a biblically informed theology must be "bipolar. "1

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