This comment on Chaim Saiman's illuminating comparison between rabbinic and Christian approaches to religious texts that are in some sense authoritative focuses on what we can fairly infer from the sharp difference he describes. I believe there is much more to be said on this fascinating topic, and I now write with large gaps in my understanding of relevant subjects. I concentrate here on the question whether the Christian view that Professor Saiman describes actually has strong logical implications for what one should regard as desirable interpretive and legislative strategies for the (secular) law of large diverse societies. On that crucial point, I am more skeptical than Saiman appears to be.
I begin with a few preliminary observations, and then pose some other questions about connections between religious perspectives and views about ordinary legal interpretation before tackling my main topic.