The tag continues to get used a lot. I retag it to when I see it, but I think it should be made a formal synonym. Note that exegesis already has the synonyms of interpretation and hermeneutics.

Not all Bible interpretation is about exegesis, and not all questions tagged with it should be retagged to exegesis. But I think this is because the other use of the tag, for questions about how to interpret the whole of the Bible systematically, is not a useful tag. It's like tagging a question with - when every question can be tagged with a tag the tag probably shouldn't exist.

I may not be right about this. If you can find some questions that aren't about textual exegesis but for which the bible-interpretation tag is useful, please link to them in an answer.

(Also, I think the exegesis wiki should be edited - saying it's about "critical interpretation" makes it sound too academic, or possibly limited to source or higher criticism, whereas it's a tag we want users to be using even if the question isn't of a high academic standard.)

Please vote for the tag synonym here.

2 Answers 2


I was just going to propose this as a synonym. I don't have a clue what exegesis is if it isn't Bible Interpretation and I don't know how some questions can be "What did Jesus Mean" and be and others be .

Of course, awesome words like Exegesis and Hermeneutics are outside my domain of expertise.

I think it's time to get serious about the "According to whom" aspect of this site too, when it comes to questions.

So, could we make it a 3 step process

  1. Biblical Interpretation and Exegesis are made synonyms
  2. Tag everything question with with the word "mean" in it (except those referencing unhappy people, the golden mean and Mean Girls) with one of them (doesn't matter which now) 2b.Also tag with an "according to whom" if it's obvious in the question, but not spelled out (and edit the title accordingly)
  3. Close all the questions that don't say "according to whom"

These are the Broken Windows of Christianity.SE, the inviters of speculation, polemics and narco-crypto-clepto-Catholicism.

It's like Pope Francis says, if we let every question be as trashy as any one of these, the entire website would be covered in filth!


Look, I tend to disagree. Exegesis is defined as "critical explanation or interpretation of a text, especially of scripture." so to remove the 'critical' part would not be warranted. In practice, it is commonly used in reference to a localised text: A common contrast is made between topical sermons and expository sermons in this way - commonly representing that only the latter are truly exegetical, even though a topical sermon can be critically exegeting from the wider text. Biblical interpretation does not carry this localised connotation and speaking as someone who has used both tags according to which I thought was most appropriate - I would prefer a distinction be maintained (and if necessary, clarified).

  • I was not suggesting to remove "critical interpretation" from the wiki, just "critical".
    – curiousdannii Mod
    Jul 21, 2014 at 2:41
  • @curiousdannii edited accordingly Jul 21, 2014 at 2:42
  • You're right that there's a difference, but I don't think bible-interpretation is the best tag for the second stage of interpretation. I'd explain exegesis as "studying a text to understand how it was meant to be understood in its original context". This is what most of the questions tagged as bible-interpretation are about. Not many are about interpreting the whole Bible systematically, and even those that are would be better tagged with the systematic topic instead, IMO.
    – curiousdannii Mod
    Jul 21, 2014 at 2:43
  • Also note that exegesis already has two synonyms: interpretation and hermeneutics.
    – curiousdannii Mod
    Jul 21, 2014 at 2:44
  • For me, the implication of 'bible interpretation' is wider than '(critical) textual interpretation' - it will be interesting to see other's take on this issue. Jul 21, 2014 at 2:46
  • yep, let's see what other's think :)
    – curiousdannii Mod
    Jul 21, 2014 at 2:47

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