This landmark work, which has shaped a generation of scholarship, compares the apostle Paul with contemporary Judaism, both understood on their own terms. E. P. Sanders proposes a methodology for comparing similar but distinct religious patterns, demolishes a flawed view of rabbinic Judaism still prevalent in much New Testament scholarship, and argues for a distinct understanding of the apostle and of the consequences of his conversion. A new foreword by Mark A. Chancey outlines Sanders‘s achievement, reviews the principal criticisms raised against it, and describes the legacy he leaves future interpreters.
This book is devoted both to the problem of Paul's view of the law as a whole, and to his thought about and relation to his fellow Jews. Building upon his previous study, the critically acclaimed Paul and Palestinian Judaism, E.P. Sanders explores Paul's Jewishness by concentrating on his overall relationship to Jewish tradition and thought. Sanders addresses such topics as Paul's use of scripture, the degree to which he was a practicing Jew during his career as apostle to the Gentiles, and his thoughts about his "kin by race" who did not accept Jesus as the messiah. In short, Paul's thoughts about the law and his own people are re-examined with new awareness and great care. Sanders addresses an important chapter in the history of the emergence of Christianity. Paul's role in that development -- specially in light of Galatians and Romans -- is now re-evaluated in a major way. This book is in fact a significant contribution to the study of the emergent normative self-definition in Judaism and Christianity during the first centuries of the common era.
Christian-Jewish relations have had changing fortunes throughout the centuries. Occasionally there has been peace and even mutual understanding, but usually these relations have been ones of tension, often involving recrimination and even violence. This volume addresses a number of the major questions that have been at the heart and the periphery of these tenuous relations through the years. The volume begins with a number of papers discussing relations as Christianity emerged from and defined itself in terms of Judaism. Other papers trace the relations through the intervening years. And a number of papers confront issues that have been at the heart of the troubled twentieth century. In all, these papers address a sensitive yet vital set of issues from a variety of approaches and perspectives, becoming in their own way a part of the ongoing dialogue.
Is salvation a gift of God's grace or something God's followers must earn by good works? How do we reconcile the two emphases that salvation is a bestowal of God's mercy and that the final judgment will involve an assessment of the way people have lived during their time on earth? In Paul and Palestinian Judaism (1977), E.P. Sanders defined the terms and laid the groundwork for this crucial debate. Sanders's "New Perspective" sought to resolve the tension between grace and good deeds by arguing that for the Jews of Paul's day as well as for Paul himself, entrance into God's saving covenant was a gift of God's grace, while remaining in the covenant required good works done in obedience to God. Sanders's most vigorous opponents have disputed the works side of his formulation, taking issue with his contention that obedience is required to retain right standing in God's covenant. In Judgment and Justification, Chris VanLandingham challenges the grace side of the Sanders thesis, arguing that Paul's teaching on salvation, following the prevailing Jewish thinking of his time, establishes good works as the criterion for salvation at the final judgment. In making his case, VanLandingham does a text-by-text survey of early Jewish literature, interacting with a wide range of biblical scholars who deal with the themes of salvation and literature and judgment found in these texts and in the Pauline writings. VanLandingham wraps up this survey with a challenging reassessment of Paul's teaching in the light of the Jewish thinking of his time.
Decades after setting the study of Paul on a profoundly new footing with Paul and Palestinian Judaism (Fortress Press, 1977), E. P. Sanders now offers an expansive introduction to the apostle, navigating some of the thorniest issues in scholarship in language accessible to the novice and seasoned scholar alike. Always careful to distinguish what we can know historically from what we may only conjecture, and these from dogmatically driven misrepresentations, Sanders sketches a fresh picture of the apostle as an ardent defender of his own convictions, ever ready to craft the sorts of arguments that now fill his letters but—as Sanders carefully argues—were not the basis for his own beliefs and attitudes. He also gives sustained attention to a historical sketch of Paul’s context, particularly Second Temple Judaism, in order to set comparisons of Paul and that context on solid ground. Here are familiar themes from Sanders’s earlier work—the importance of works in Paul’s thought, the relationship of “plight” and “solution” —in a presentation that reveals a career’s reflection, along with new thinking regarding development in Paul’s thought. All of the letters are carefully introduced in a text that will prove a worthy guide to the student and interested reader.
"Generations of students of Palestinian Judaism have been guided by monumental works such as Emil Schurer's History of the Jewish People in the Age of Jesus Christ and Joachim Jeremias's Jerusalem in the Time of Jesus, and scholarship has been shaped by the picture of Jewish belief and practice presented there. In this important new book Professor Sanders, whose Paul and Palestinian Judaism changed the course of Pauline studies, again argues against the prevailing views. He believes that flaws in method have produced a false impression of the Judaism of the period, for example, that the Pharisees were all-important and actually ran Jewish Palestine or that the Mishnah offers a description of general practice. In contrast, through thorough examination of the sources and by means of case studies, Sanders shows that what was important was 'common Judaism', the people and their observances, daily, weekly, seasonal and annual practices and the beliefs that bore directly on them. Early rabbinic legal material should be seen not as a set of rules, but as debates to be set within the context of real life, and parties such as the Pharisees, Sadducees and Essenes must be seen in proper relation to the Judaism of ordinary priests and people." "Here then is a remarkably comprehensive presentation of Judaism as a functioning religion: the temple and its routine and festivals; questions of purity, sacrifices, tithes and taxes; common theology and hopes for the future; and descriptions of the various parties and groups culminating in an examination of the question 'who ran what?'. No other work offers such a detailed, clear and well argued account of all aspects of Jewish religion of the time. Written in a style easily accessible to any interested reader as well as to scholars, this book provides the major resource for study of Palestinian Judaism, whether by Jews or Christians, for years to come."--BOOK JACKET.Title Summary field provided by Blackwell North America, Inc. All Rights Reserved
How far did Paul stray from the view of salvation handed down to him in the Jewish tradition? Following a hunch from E.P. Sanders's seminal book Paul and Palestinian Judaism,Preston Sprinkle finds buried in the Old Testament's Deuteronomic and prophetic perspectives a key that starts to turn the rusted lock on Paul's critique of Judaism.
Using Paul's letter to the Romans as the foundation for his monumental study of Paul's theology, James D. G. Dunn describes Paul's teaching on God, sin, humankind, Christology, salvation, the church, and the nature of the Christian life.
Jesus was a Jew. That simple statement carries with it a millennia of cultural bias, persecution, and ignorance. David Ray Bourquin attempts to shed some light on what it meant to be a Jew during the Roman Period with this detailed, annotated bibliography of works in English. Following a brief introduction and guide on how to use the book, Bourquin divides his work into three major sections: A. Primary Sources; B. Books; and C. Periodical and Serial Articles. In each section, materials are arranged by subject, and in each sub-section in alphabetical order by main entry. Entries include complete bibliographical data, plus concise, descriptive, and analytical annotations. A glossary and four detailed indexes, all correlated to entry numbers, complete the volume. Every student of the period will want a copy of this carefully compiled bibliography.
Paul is the most powerful human personality in the history of the Church. A missionary, theologian, and religious genius, in his epistles he laid the foundations on which later Christian theology was built.
Since 1977, the lines of inquiry developed by P.E. Sanders, James D.G. Dunn, N.T. Wright and others, have generated the 'New Perspective' on Paul. This perspective is profoundly tied to a certain reading of the literature of second temple Judaism which then in turn shapes what is now the dominant reading of Paul.This volume brings together an array of specialists to examine afresh the various corpora of the period. The authors analyze the highly diverse literature to determine to what extent 'covenantal nomism' is a suitable way for its categorization. The way this literature speaks of the relationship between God and Israel, election, sacrifice, the manner in which God's people are said to be rightly related to him, are all studied closely, within the genre distinctions and theological priorities of each corpus. Careful study is also devoted to 'righteousness' language.Volume 2 will apply the findings to Paul.
The 'New Perspective on Paul' cleared Judaism contemporary to Paul of the accusation that it was a religion based on works of righteousness. Reactions to the New Perspective, both positive and critical, and sometimes even strongly negative, reflect a more fundamental problem in the reception of this paradigm: the question of continuity and discontinuity between Judaism and Christianity and its assumed implications for Jewish-Christian dialogue. A second key problem revolves around Paul's understanding of salvation as exclusive, inclusive or pluralist. The contributions in the present volume represent at least six approaches that can be plotted along this axis, considering Paul's theology in its Jewish context. William S. Campbell and Thomas R. Blanton consider Paul's Covenantal Theology, Michael Bachman provides an exegetical study of Paul, Israel and the Gentiles, and Mark D. Nanos considers Paul and Torah. After this chapters by Philip A. Cunningham, John T. Pawlikowski, Hans-Joachim Sander, and Hans-Herman Henrix give particular weight to questions of Jewish-Christian dialogue. The book finishes with an epilogue by pioneer of the New Perspective James D.G. Dunn.
The essays presented here represent over twenty-five years of thinking about the theology and life of the Apostle Paul who, as a "slave of Jesus Christ" (Rom 1:1), was a "servant of the new covenant" with a "ministry of the Spirit" (2 Cor 3:6, 8). Taking the questions raised by the history of scholarship since F. C. Baur as their starting point, Hafemann's exegetical studies focus on how Paul's self-understanding shaped his message, the motivations of his ministry, and his consequent call to suffer for the sake of his churches. Hafemann's work reveals that Paul's views of redemption, of his own redemptive mission, and of the life of the redeemed derived from his eschatological conviction that the purpose of the new covenant realities inaugurated by the Christ is to prepare for their promised consummation when Christ returns to judge the world.
Veronica Koperski's addition to the much-lauded What Are They Saying About (WATSA) series presents an overview of recent scholarly debate about Paul and the Law with attention to its historical roots. Chapter one treats scholars who basically remain within the tradition of Luther/Bultmann in asserting that the Law fosters a prideful attitude. Chapters two and three deal with the "new perspective on Paul" initiated with the publications of E. P. Sanders in the 1970s and 1980s. Chapter four presents scholars who, although sensitive to the work of Sanders, reiterate some of the traditional Luther/Bultmann position. In chapter five the focus is Paul's consistency, and chapter six explores scholarship opining that justification by faith can no longer be considered the center of Paul's theology.
Recent scholarship on Second Temple Judaism and Paul has maintained that both held salvation to be through God's grace alone, not human obedience. In this study, Jason Maston argues against this trend by demonstrating the spectrum of perspectives available during the Second Temple period regarding the interaction of divine and human actions. Using Josephus' depiction of the Jewish schools as the starting point, he argues that ancient Jews were discussing the issue of divine and human agency and that they were putting forward alternative and even contradictory perspectives. These different viewpoints are shown in Sirach and the Hodayot. Into this spectrum of opinions, the Apostle Paul is situated through an analysis of Romans 7-8. The author challenges the idea that all of Judaism can be explained under a single view of salvation. Recognising the diversity allows one to situate Paul firmly within a Jewish context without distorting either the Jewish texts or Paul.
In this Romans commentary Colin Kruse shows how Paul expounds the gospel against the background of God's sovereign action as creator, judge, and redeemer of the world. --from publisher description.
Re-examines Paul within contemporary Jewish debate, attuned to the significant theological issues he raises without imposing upon him the frameworks developed in later Christian thought
A biography of the historical figure of Jesus. The book studies the relationship between Judaism and Christianity, distinguishing the certain from the improbable, and assessing the historical and religious context of Christ's time. The spread of Christianity is also discussed.
The period since the close of World War II has been agonizingly introspective—not least because of the pain of reassessing Christianity’s attitude to Judaism. The early Christian materials have often been examined to assess their role in the long-standing negative attitude of Christians to Jews. The motivation for the early church’s sometimes harsh attitude was partly theological—it needed to define itself over against its parent—and partly sociological—it needed to make clear the line that divided the fledgling group of Christian believers fromt he group with which it was most likely to be confused. This collection of studies emphasizes the context and history of early Christianity in reconsidering many of the classic passages that have contributed to the development of anti-Judaism in Christianity. The volume opens with an essay that clearly delineates the state of the question of anti-Judaism in early Christianity. Then follow discussions of specific passages in the writings of Paul as well as the Gospels.