Author: Eric F. Mason
Release Date: 2011-10-14
These essays honor James C. VanderKam on the occasion of his sixty-fifth birthday and twentieth year on the faculty of the University of Notre Dame. Essays from an international group of scholars address various topics in Second Temple Judaism and biblical studies.
A careful reconsideration of the Apocryphon of Jeremiah C from Qumran and the Jeremianic traditions in the Qumran literature reveals the importance of Jeremiah's prophetic persona for the construction of community identity in periods of crisis.
Author: Daniel K. Falk
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing
Release Date: 2007-05-03
This book introduces the reader to a fascinating genre of writings that retell biblical narratives in various ways. They reflect the concerns and methods of early Jewish interpreters of Scripture. Daniel Falk surveys the content and major scholarly issues of three key examples: Genesis Apocryphon (1QapGen), Reworked Pentateuch (4Q158, 364-5), and Commentary to Genesis (4Q252-4). Particular attention is paid to exploring why and how the authors interpret the Scriptural text in their distinctive ways. The book traces continuity and discontinuity with other Jewish and Christian traditions, and reflects on the significance of these texts for the status of Scripture and the boundary between Scripture and interpretation. Drawing on the latest research and reconstructions of the texts, and with extensive bibliographies, this is an authoritative guide for the student or the non-specialist scholar.
Author: Matthew V. Novenson
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Release Date: 2012-04-17
Recent scholarship on ancient Judaism, finding only scattered references to messiahs in Hellenistic- and Roman-period texts, has generally concluded that the word ''messiah'' did not mean anything determinate in antiquity. Meanwhile, interpreters of Paul, faced with his several hundred uses of the Greek word for ''messiah,'' have concluded that christos in Paul does not bear its conventional sense. Against this curious consensus, Matthew V. Novenson argues in Christ among the Messiahs that all contemporary uses of such language, Paul's included, must be taken as evidence for its range of meaning. In other words, early Jewish messiah language is the kind of thing of which Paul's Christ language is an example. Looking at the modern problem of Christ and Paul, Novenson shows how the scholarly discussion of christos in Paul has often been a cipher for other, more urgent interpretive disputes. He then traces the rise and fall of ''the messianic idea'' in Jewish studies and gives an alternative account of early Jewish messiah language: the convention worked because there existed both an accessible pool of linguistic resources and a community of competent language users. Whereas it is commonly objected that the normal rules for understanding christos do not apply in the case of Paul since he uses the word as a name rather than a title, Novenson shows that christos in Paul is neither a name nor a title but rather a Greek honorific, like Epiphanes or Augustus. Focusing on several set phrases that have been taken as evidence that Paul either did or did not use christos in its conventional sense, Novenson concludes that the question cannot be settled at the level of formal grammar. Examining nine passages in which Paul comments on how he means the word christos, Novenson shows that they do all that we normally expect any text to do to count as a messiah text. Contrary to much recent research, he argues that Christ language in Paul is itself primary evidence for messiah language in ancient Judaism.
Twenty-seven scholars gather to honor George Nickelsburg in this collection of essays that uses his methods to examine the reuse or reinterpretation of authoritative tradition in early Judaism and Christianity.