The Symphonic Bible

Sanctified Vision: An Introduction to Early Christian Interpretation of the Bible
by John J. O’Keefe and R. R. Reno
Johns Hopkins University Press, 2005
(156 pages, $16.95, paperback)

reviewed by Ryan J. Jack Mcdermott

In his Life of Moses, Gregory of Nyssa explicates Moses’ transformation of the magician’s staff into a snake as “a figure of the mystery of the Lord’s incarnation, a manifestation of deity to men which effects the death of the tyrant and sets free those under his power.” To do this, he conflates texts from Genesis, Exodus, Numbers, Proverbs, John, 1 and 2 Corinthians, and Revelation.

Modern readers appreciate Gregory’s rich creativity, but we balk at his freewheeling . . .

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Ryan J. Jack McDermott is a doctoral student in English literature at the University of Virginia. He, his wife Darrah, and their first child, Augustine (born in April) are Episcopalians.

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