"BUT IF IT IS BY THE FINGER OF GOD THAT I CAST OUT DEMONS..." (LUKE 11: 20): EXEGETICAL AND HERMENEUTICAL REFLECTIONS IN THE LIGHT OF THE AFRICAN SPIRIT-WORLD
This article focuses on the cryptic text of Luke 11:20 where Jesus employs the ancient Hebraic slogan, "by the finger of God" to perform exorcism in his day. Our method is exegetical. Our purpose is to demonstrate some level of interest in emerging creativity and change in contemporary contextual biblical scholarship in Africa. The significance and value of the Redactional hand of the evangelist, Luke, in re-shaping the theology of the verse to suit his gentile audience is acknowledged. The Intercultural Hermeneutical approach helps us to interpret Luke's insights for our culturally alert present-day African Bible readers to understand what Luke says in Chapter 11 verse 20 in a new light. We anchor our perspectives in the realities of the African social locations/contexts in order to claim that any people’s religio-cultural traditions should be utilized as critical resources and basis for meaningful exegesis and hermeneutics tailored to address own specific contexts. Thus, our context of interpretation is the heart of the African social-religious and cultural cosmologies. The paper concludes on the significance of Luke’s use of this bizarre Hebrew expression, finger of God. It is noted that the expression is a literary device patterned on the Hebrew narrative of the magic-wand utilized by Pharaoh’s magicians in Ex 8: 15-19 to inform his readership that God speaks through sacred writings, in sacred words, sacred objects and that these phenomena are not in the lack in the African environment.