Sunday, February 11, 2007

Binding and Loosing

Ideas from Rob Bell's book, "Velvet Elvis":

In the days when Jesus walked this earth, the rabbinic practice of setting down rules of what is and is not allowed was technically referred to as binding and loosing.
To "bind" something was to forbid it. To "loose" something was to allow it. (p. 49)
Notice what Jesus says in the book of Matthew: "I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven."

What he is doing here is significant. He is giving his followers the authority to make new interpretations of the Bible.
[He is also saying that when they do so,] somehow God in heaven will be involved.
(p. 50)


Michael Krahn said...

I guess the conflict here lies in:

a. Did Jesus give binding and loosing power to the original apostles or did he mean for it to be passed onto to future generations?

b. Can we loose (allow) something someone else has bound (forbidden)? If so, whose authority is first?

Chyntt said...

Good questions, Michael. Bell indicates that the binding/loosing power was given to future generations as well as the original apostles.

I myself am not entirely sure about that, but I found the concept interesting enough to mention it.

I've also wondered about your second question; the impression I get from Bell is that binding and loosing is based on need -- time, place, circumstances, etc.

On the one hand that seems a little wishy-washy; on the other, it seems a bit freeing.

Again, I'm not entirely sure I agree with Bell, but it is an interesting concept.

Michael Krahn said...

I finished "Velvet Elvis" last night and I've been making notes as I go along. Hopefully I'll get those up on my blog this week.