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Academic Periodical

The Quarterly Journal of St. Philaret’s Institute

Issue 4 (winter 2011)



Academic periodical of St Philaret’s Christian Orthodox Institute. Iss. 4. 2011. 200 p.

Works of SFI Lecturers

Alexey Somov
The Old Testament Canon: History, Problems, and Prospects for Future Research
pp. 9–35 
The article is dedicated to an overview of the history of the Old Testament canon origins and its formation in Judaism and Christianity in connection with the issue of the criteria of the Old Testament books canonicity. It also analyses the difficulties embracing the Church during the process of canonization of these writings. The research also focuses on a range of problems concerning the Old Testament canon the Church still faces today. In conclusion, the article touches upon prospects of future research of the Old Testament canon and proposes a thorough study of various texts remaining from several Jewish religious groups that influenced the early Christian tradition.
Keywords: Bible, Old Testament, divine inspiration, canon, Masoretic text, Septuagint.

Mikhail Seleznyov, PhD in Philology
Russian Bible: between the Masoretic Text and the Septuagint
pp. 36–54
The article lays down a short overview of history of the so-called Synodal translation of the Bible made in the XIX century and still being the main Russian version of the Bible. The principles of this translation are analyzed. The author also discusses the principles that served as guidelines for a group of Old Testament translators working in 1996–2010 under his leadership within the framework of the Bible Society in Russia (BSR). Their translation of the Old Testament became part of the new edition of the Russian Bible, published by the BSR in 2011.
Keywords: Russian Bible, biblical translation principles, Synodal translation, Septuagint.

Olga Sushkova
The Two Trends in the Sea of Bible Translation: Nowadays English Translations of the Bible
pp. 55–74
The article analyses the nowadays situation in the English Bible translation: the enormous number of translations and the two main trends – formal equivalence (literal translation) and functional equivalence (idiomatical translation). Idiomatical translations see their reader as a neo-pagan of the post-Christian time. The aim is to avoid making the text too complicated which might scare the reader off. The literal method seeks translating without any interpretations, distortions or “adjusting”. They mean that the reader doesn’t care about the literary quality or the Evangelic content of the Bible because of the “familiar abstraction” of its translation.
Keywords: formal equivalence, functional equivalence, literal translation, idiomatical translation, modern reader of the Bible.

Olga Astapova, PhD in History
“God will Provide Himself a Lamb...”: An Attempt of Reading the Akedah from the Historical-Religious Perspective
pp. 75–93
The present article providing the evidence derived from the extra-biblical sources attempts to show that the story of the Binding of Isaac, the Akedah (Genesis XXII) resulted from the Biblical author’s reflections on the Israel’s mission and the peculiarity of its religious way compared to other nations. A focal point of the present interpretation of the Akedah is the dialog between God and man.
Keywords: the sacrifice of Isaac, human sacrifices, the cult of Molek, the substitute sacrifice, the chosenness of Israel, ritual, ritualism, dialog between God and man.

Student Works at SFI’s Department of the Holy Scripture and Biblical Studies

Vyacheslav Zykov
Problems of Interpretation of the Word ,dah (ha’adam) from the Biblical Passages on the Creation of Man (Gen 1:27, 2:7) in the Literature of the Second Temple Period
pp.  95–114 
The research is concentrated on the problems of interpretation of the Hebrew word «ha’adam», found in the passages of Genesis 1:27, 2:7 dedicated to the Creation of Man, in the literature of the Second Temple period. The article analyses the texts where authors either keep the original vocabulary in their interpretations of the verses on the creation of man, use expressions close in meaning, or introduce the name of Adam. The article traces the influence of theological views of the authors of the texts and translations of the given period on formation of respective vocabulary and exegetical tendencies – from the first Adam to the Last Adam, Jesus Christ.
Keywords: man, Adam, Genesis, exegesis, the Second Temple period.
Vera Mitrofanova
The First Chapter on the Book of Ezekiel as a Model of Communication between the Lord and the World He Created
pp. 115–136
The article is devoted to interpretation of an image of the Chariot in Chapter 1 of the Book of the Prophet Ezekiel. The author tries to get into a riddle of the first vision of Ezekiel and proposes the hypothesis of the Chariot as a model of mutual relations between God and the world created by Him. This model is presented as a certain dynamic image of the Chariot. The offered model is based on the results of analysis of four metaphors specific for the Book of Ezekiel. The research rests upon various ancient translations of Chapter 1 of the Book of the Prophet Ezekiel, other Biblical and Non-Biblical texts, which help to clarify meanings of words in these metaphors, determine associative chains of these metaphors, and to reconstruct the worldview particular for the times of the Prophet.
Keywords: the first vision of the prophet Ezekiel, the fiery chariot, the vault of Heaven, wheels of the cherubs, feet of the cherubs, a figure of a person on the Throne.

Veronika Ponikarovskaya
Divisions within the Corinthian Community: Theological Parties
pp. 137–152 
In ancient philosophy, the role of a teacher was traditionally emphasized. Under the influence of this tradition, Corinthian Christians thought it essential to follow the line of a particular authoritative apostle. This led to creation of divisions within the Community: “Paul’s party” insisted on the law-free gospel, “Cephas’ party” was more traditionally Jewish; “Apollos’ party” was fascinated by Hellenistic Jewish wisdom. Insisting on their adherence to the “proper” authority, the Corinthians also sought to elevate their own status. Paul suggests a value reorientation – God’s wisdom and glory instead of human wisdom and glory – and adherence to the “party of Christ”. This is a radical Christ-centeredness, which relativizes the importance of any human teacher.
Keywords: early Corinthians, rhetoric, theological parties, Christ-centeredness.
Olga Tskitishvili
John the Baptist and His Ministry
pp. 153–171 
John the Baptist was the last Old Testament prophet. Presumably he lived among the Essenes for a long time and partly accepted their ideas, but separated from them later, following the “God’s call”. According to the Gospels, John the Baptist saw the purpose of his baptism in preparing people to meeting the Lord. Jesus Himself came to receive baptism from him to begin His ministry, and John witnessed that He was the Messiah. John’s sermon and activity were in order to preach the gospel that the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand. Jesus Christ asserted that “from the days of John the Baptist until now the Kingdom of Heaven suffers violence”.
Keywords: Messiah, John the Baptist, Essenes, baptism of repentance, service.
Olga Yaroshevskaya
Miracles in Gospels as the Sign of Kingdom
pp. 172–187 
The author analyses peculiarities of miracles of Jesus recorded in Gospels by the example of cures. Their main feature is that they address not only a healed person but every witness. Healing leads not only to recovery, but to internal transformation (i. e. to salvation) of the healed person. Moreover, such transformations happen to numerous witnesses of the miracle. In that sense, cures are the signs of Kingdom the main feature of which is not outward changes but creation of new relations between people.
Keywords: Jesus, miracles, cures.


Mikhail Seleznyov, PhD in Philology
From “The Man” of Myth towards “Adam” of Genealogical Lists
pp. 189–197
The paper deals with the meaning of the word ,da in Genesis: whether a common noun “human being” or a proper name “Adam” is meant. A short review of Bible translations, ancient and modern, follows.
Keywords: man, Adam, Genesis, exegesis, the Second Temple period, Bible translations.
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