In reflecting on the value of figurative language in On Christian Doctrine, Augustine explains that “I contemplate the saints more pleasantly when I envisage them as the teeth of the Church cutting off men from their errors and transferring them to her body.” I’m totally with him in that I love the idea of Aquinas, Joan of Arc, and hey, maybe Joseph Smith and Sidney Rigdon too, chomping us down into the digestive tract of Christian devotion; it offers something for the imagination to chew on during a dull sacrament meeting.
Commentators on the Hebrew Bible have sometimes remarked on the book’s general lack of interiority, or the narrowness of the windows into the emotional dimensions of its characters’ behavior (especially compared to modern literature). Events are frequently conveyed with a laconic straightforwardness whose tone can be frustratingly difficult to decipher. And nowhere is this stylistic feature more stark, almost breathtaking in its eerie […]
I’ve often heard it repeated in the Church that Elohim, the Hebrew word for “God,” refers not just to God the Father but to a divine Couple. The evidence adduced for this position is the fact that in Hebrew the term is morphologically a masculine plural. (Its singular form, Eloah, also appears in the Bible, […]