This is the first complete edition of the private biblical notebook that Jonathan Edwards compiled over a period of nearly thirty-five years. Edwards’ “Notes on Scripture” confirms the centrality of the Bible in his thought and provides more balance to earlier depictions of his writings that emphasized the scientific and philosophical while overlooking the biblical dimension. In this critical edition the entries appear in the order in which Edwards wrote them, beginning with a short commentary on Genesis 2:10–14 that he penned in 1724, and ending with his last entry, Number 507 on the Book of Solomon’s Song, written two years before his death.
This volume provides direct access to one of America’s most influential religious thinkers. Edwards’ entries range across the entire scriptural canon and reveal his creativity in the interpretation of particular biblical texts and his fascination with typology. The notebook also documents Edwards’ engagement with the intellectual currents of his day, in particular his response to the challenge associated with the Enlightenment critique of biblical revelation. Stephen J. Stein’s introduction situates Edwards as an exegete in the larger tradition of biblical commentary and in the intellectual world of eighteenth-century Western thought.
“ Christ’s descending from several harlots and Gentiles intimates unto us that all that are saved by Christ were sinners” (Page 51)
“Edwards’ defense of Mosaic authorship included an argument based on the internal witness of Scripture” (Page 14)
“And it seems to me likely that he should speak of his body in two senses: in one sense of the church, which is called his body, and is also called the temple of God, of which the temple of Jerusalem was a type. The temple of Jerusalem may signify the Jewish church, which Christ put an end to by his coming,6 and in three ages after erected his spiritual temple, the Christian church.” (Page 63)
“The collective result of his exegesis is a scriptural organon with the typological principle at its foundation, a system composed of biblical themes that Edwards regarded as central to Christianity and that he used in his public ministry as the basis for sermons, occasional writings, and major treatises.” (Page 3)
“saw connections between the natural and the spiritual worlds as well as between historical events and divine truths” (Page 10)
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