how to tell the biblical story in a way that makes a difference

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I would have thought, Ed, that the onus is you to show that the apostles did not read the text in this way. If we take the Lord’s prayer example, which I’m sure you looked at, I hardly think it is necessary to demonstrate that Jesus was a Jew, that he knew the scriptures, that he thought like a prophet, that he was concerned about the condition of Israel, that he expected the kingdom to come within a generation. So the first assumption should be that when he uses the language of a biblical prophet in a prayer for the coming of the kingdom when Israel is under Roman occupation, he has in mind an impending crisis of judgment and renewal. That seems to me to be a basic rule of historical interpretation.

What rules do you operate under that would disqualify that reading? I will write a short piece next week, but I don’t really feel that I need to dance to your tune on this one.