Paul with Judaism: Restoring the First-Century Context to the Apostle

Fortress Press
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In these chapters, a group of renowned international scholars seek to describe Paul and his work from “within Judaism,” rather than on the assumption, still current after thirty years of the “New Perspective,” that in practice Paul left behind aspects of Jewish living after his discovery of Jesus as Christ (Messiah).  After an introduction that surveys recent study of Paul and highlights the centrality of questions about Paul’s Judaism, chapters explore the implications of reading Paul’s instructions as aimed at Christ-following non-Jews, teaching them how to live in ways consistent with Judaism while remaining non-Jews. The contributors take different methodological points of departure: historical, ideological-critical, gender-critical, and empire-critical, and examine issues of terminology and of interfaith relations. Surprising common ground among the contributors presents a coherent alternative to the “New Perspective.” The volume concludes with a critical evaluation of the Paul within Judaism perspective by Terence L. Donaldson, a well-known voice representative of the best insights of the New Perspective.
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About the author

Mark D. Nanos is lecturer at the University of Kansas and author of The Mystery of Romans (Fortress Press, 1996) and The Irony of Galatians (Fortress Press, 2002).

Magnus Zetterholm is associate professor in New Testament studies at Lund University and author of Approaches to Paul: A Student’s Guide to Recent Scholarship (Fortress Press, 2009) and The Formation of Christianity in Antioch (2003); he edited The Messiah: In Early Judaism and Christianity (Fortress Press, 2007).

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Additional Information

Publisher
Fortress Press
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Published on
Jan 1, 2015
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Pages
360
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ISBN
9781451494280
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Language
English
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Genres
Religion / Biblical Studies / General
Religion / Biblical Studies / Paul's Letters
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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The dominant portrayals of the apostle Paul are of a figure who no longer valued Jewish identity and behavior, opposing them for both Jew and non-Jew in his assemblies. This prevailing version of Paul depends heavily upon certain interpretations of key “flashpoint” passages. In this book and the subsequent volumes in this series, Mark Nanos undertakes to test a "Paul within Judaism" (re)reading of the apostle, especially of these “flashpoint” texts.

Nanos demonstrates how traditional conclusions about Paul and the meaning of his letters are dramatically altered by testing the hypothesis that the historical Paul practiced a Jewish, Torah-observant way of life, and that he expected those whom he addressed to know that he did so. Nanos also tests the hypothesis that the non-Jews addressed were expected to know that his guidance was based on promoting a Jewish way of life for themselves, at the same time insisting that they remain non-Jews and thus not technically under Torah on the same terms as himself and the other Jews in this new (Jewish) movement.

In conversation with the prevailing views, Nanos argues that the “Paul within Judaism” perspective offers not only more historically probable interpretations of Paul's texts, but also more promise for better relations between Christians and Jews, because these texts have informed Christian concepts of, ways of talking about, and behavior toward Jews based on the premise that Paul considered Jews and Judaism the mirror opposites of what Christians should be and become.



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