Church Resources

Previous ] Home ] Up ] Next ]

      

 
Scripture for the Ridley Cambridge Draft
Lionel E. Deimel
June 13, 2009

Two months ago, I wrote a blog post announcing the availability of a document listing all the scripture cited in the Ridley Cambridge draft for an Anglican covenant. I decided to add this page to my Web site to make “Scripture References for the Ridley Cambridge Draft of the Anglican Communion Covenant” more readily available. (Many Web searches do not return material on blogs.) I do hope that this collection of Bible passages will be useful to those reading the Ridley Cambridge draft, though I have to add the caveat that one may get a different view of the significance of the cited scripture by reading not only what was cited by the Covenant Design Group but by reading the context of those passages as well.

Perhaps another caveat is in order, namely that one’s choice of Bible version may affect the message one gets from the cited passages. One does not need to be a biblical scholar, or even a reader of New Testament Greek, to appreciate that the notion of the “plain meaning of Scripture” is suspect. Different Bible translations can differ from one another in significant ways, to say nothing of the possibility of interpreting the text in other than a totally literal fashion.

In any case, consider me a skeptic of any document that tries to justify itself by citing Bible passages. Curiously, most of the citation in the Ridley Cambridge draft are in the introduction, which is said not to be a part of the covenant but which is also supposed to be inseparable from it.

Although I do not feel qualified to say much about the use of scripture in the draft, I would like to point out one thing I did notice. Only three verses of the Bible are actually reproduced in the draft, and they are 1 John 1:2–4, used as an epigraph in the introduction:

This life is revealed, and we have seen it and testify to it, and declare to you the eternal life that was with the Father and was revealed to us – we declare to you what we have seen and heard so that you also may have communion with us; and truly our communion is with the Father and with his Son Jesus Christ. These things we write so that our joy may be complete.

What is curious about this passage is the fact that I cannot identify the Bible translation from which it is taken. The corresponding passage in my compendium, which uses the New Revised Standard Version, is the following:

this life was revealed, and we have seen it and testify to it, and declare to you the eternal life that was with the Father and was revealed to us—we declare to you what we have seen and heard so that you also may have fellowship with us; and truly our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son Jesus Christ. We are writing these things so that our joy may be complete.

Whereas these two renderings are quite similar, neither the NRSV nor any other Bible translation I consulted—the Web hosts quite a few that can be examined—use the word communion. The word used instead is invariably fellowship. I suspect what is being cited here is the Covenant Design Group Version of the Bible. Make of this what you will.

Anglican Communion compass rose

 

Previous Home Up Next

 
Send mail to Lionel Deimel with questions or comments about Lionel Deimel’s Farrago.
Copyright © 2000-2017 by Lionel Deimel. All rights reserved.