Paul Firesale Redux

More exciting Pauline studies titles at attractive prices:

Schnelle, Udo
Apostle Paul: His Life and Theology
(Baker Book House, 2005)
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Paul’s writings are centrally important not only for the establishment of the Christian faith but for the whole history of Western culture. In the original German, Prof. Udo Schnelle’s work has recently established itself as a leading text in Germany. In Prof. Boring’s translation, and with his bibliographic revisions, it now represents the state of the art in the English-speaking world. This comprehensive critical introduction combines historical and theological analysis. After essential methodological preliminaries, the first half of the book constructs Paul’s biography: his pre-Christian life, his conversion, his missionary journeys, and the context of his writings. The second half is a synchronic exposition of the theological themes that run through his writings. Apostle Paul is an essential book for professors, students, clergy, and others with a scholarly interest in Paul.

Contents 1 Prologue : Paul as challenge and provocation 2 Sources and chronology for Paul’s life and work : definite and hypothetical 3 The pre-Christian Paul : open-minded religious zealot 4 The call to be apostle to the gentiles : the new horizon 5 The Christian Paul : a Volcano begins to rumble 6 The apostolic council and the incident at Antioch : the problems remain unresolved 7 Paul’s independent mission : the volcano erupts 8 Paul and the Thessalonians : consolation and confidence 9 First Corinthians : high and true wisdom 10 Second Corinthians : peace and war 11 Paul and the Galatians : discovery in conflict 12 Paul and the church in Rome : high-level encounter 13 Paul in Rome : the old man and his work 14 The presence of salvation : the center of Pauline theology 15 Theology : the God who acts 16 Christology : the Lord who is present 17 Soteriology : the transfer has begun 18 Pneumatology : the spirit moves and works 19 Anthropology : the struggle for the self 20 Ethics : the new being as meaning formation 21 Ecclesiology : the church as a demanding and attracting fellowship 22 Eschatology : expectation and memory 23 Epilogue : Pauline thought as enduring meaning formation

Grenholm, Cristina Daniel Patte (eds)
Reading Israel in Romans: Legitimacy and Plausibility of Divergent Interpretations
(Trinity Press International, 2000)
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Applying the insights of reception theory to biblical criticism, the contributors to this volume propose a “scriptural criticism” which encourages scholars and ordinary believers to engage in a dialogue about their interpretations of particular texts. Grenholm and Patte suggest that the relationship between various theological and ecclesiastical readings of Romans can be clarified by discussing the ways that each interpretation is framed analytically, contextually, and hermeneutically. The inaugural volume in this series, this book applies “scriptural criticism” to Romans 4 and 9-11, examining the ways that Christians “read Israel in Romans” and relate to Jews. Each essay contains notes that indicate how, when, and in what way a given writer “frames” his or her interpretation of the text. Contributors to the volume include Thomas Parker and Robert L. Brawley, McCormick Theological Seminary; Joseph Sievers, Pontifical Biblical Institute, Rome; G?nter Wasserberg, Christian Albrechts University, Germany; William Campbell, University of Wales; Mark Nanos, University of St. Andrews; Daniel Boyarin, University of California, Berkeley.

Longenecker, Bruce W
Triumph of Abraham’s God: The Transformation of Identity in Galatians
(T & T Clark International, 1998)
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This scholarly yet accessible study explores the various aspects of Paul’s theology of divine triumph in the Book of Galations. For Paul, the divine invasion into “the present evil age” has resulted in the victory of God over competing suprahuman forces and establishment of a sphere of existence where God’s reputation as the cosmic sovereign is displayed. Paul envisages Christian social interaction to be the stage upon which God’s transforming power is performed and advertised. Accordingly, Paul calls his Galatian hearers not simply to a life unfettered by a ritualistic practice, but to a life of transformed existence through the power of the Spirit. Eschatological identity of this sort is the immediate consequence of the prior redemption of ethnic Israel, which the coming of Christ occasioned. In particular, Christian moral identity arises out of the “faithfulness of Christ” embodied in his loving and self-giving service. This feature is shown to be crucial to the theological and corporate enterprise that Paul envisages in Galatians, having a radical impact upon his understanding of the law, of suprahuman forces at odds with the will of God, and of validity in Christian readings of Scripture. This book concludes by considering the place of salvation history in Galations, by explaining Paul’s theology in relation to the “Lutheran” and “new” perspectives on Paul, and by demonstrating how Paul’s theology in Galatians may provide an important resource for contemporary theology concerning Christian identity and modern society.

Smith, Abraham
Comfort One Another: Reconstructing the Rhetoric and Audience of 1 Thessalonians
(Westminster John Knox, 1995)
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This unique study considers the exegetical and hermeneutical possibilities of analyzing the entire letter of 1 Thessalonians as a letter of consolation. Abraham Smith maintains that Paul wrote 1 Thessalonians with a full knowledge of the tradition of Greco-Roman letters of consolation and chose this genre to sustain members of the Thessalonian church. Smith explicates the social and literary conventions of this tradition and fully discloses why this particular rhetoric of care was employed. Showing how Paul’s letter of consolation was understood in Paul’s world and by subsequent generations, Smith demonstrates the usefulness of Paul’s rhetoric of comfort for modern society.

Table of Contents Series Preface Preface Introduction 1 Charting a Course for Interpretation 2 Reconstructing Hellenistic Rhetoric 3 Determining the Genre 4 Reconstructing the Rhetoric 5 The Audience and Extra-Textual Evidence Conclusion Notes Bibliography Indexes

Stirewalt, M Luther
Paul, the Letter Writer
(Eerdmans, 2003)
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This engaging study shows how Paul’s stylized use of the official Roman letter _ a form of communication of great social import in his day _ played a crucial role in his apostolic ministry, conveying both his self-identity and sense of authority. M. Luther Stirewalt describes the logistics of letter writing in the first-century Mediterranean world and shows how official letters served to substitute for speeches to an audience, to convey executive, official, or bureaucratic matters, or to bring complaints or petitions from citizens to officials. He then shows how Paul structured his apostolic correspondence after these models of writing, drawing evidence directly from seven Pauline epistles: 1 Thessalonians, 1 and 2 Corinthians, Philippians, Philemon, Galatians, and Romans. Cutting a new angle on Paul’s purposes, his ministry, and his pastoral concerns, Stirewalt’s Paul, the Letter Writer will appeal to readers of the Bible and ancient history.

Contents 1. The Logistics of Ancient Greek Letter Writing 2. The Official Letter-Form and the Pauline Letters 3. The Letters 4. Paul and His Apostolic, Epistolary Ministry Appendix Bibliography Index of Scripture References

From the New Testament in Context Commentary Series

Wan, Sze-Kar
Power in Weakness: The Second Letter of Paul to the Corinthians
(Trinity Press International, 2000)
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This most recent addition to the popular Trinity New Testament in Context (NTC) commentary series, edited by J. Andrew Overman and Howard Clark Kee, focuses on the apostle Paul’s refusal to match strength for strength with his detractors. Instead, Paul stresses that authentic Christian ministry is characterized by weakness and suffering, specifically the weakness and paradigmatic sufferings endured by the crucified Jesus. While not a rhetorical analysis of 2 Corinthians, this book nevertheless attends to Paul’s rhetorical skills in resolving the Corinthian controversies. It attempts to show that Paul’s theological formulations are best understood as products of rhetorical responses to controversial issues of authority and social location. The preponderance of disputed arguments and narratives in 2 Corinthians renders this letter highly unusual in the Pauline corpus and one of the most challenging for the biblical detective to unravel. Sze-kar Wan, therefore, has written a commentary that helps readers look closely at the texts relevant to the problem of dislocation, providing directional pointers that enable readers, on their own, to develop these pointers to their logical conclusions.

Due in March from Eerdmans. Fresh Perspective on Paul and Justification

Campbell, Douglas A
Deliverance of God: An Apocalyptic Rereading of Justification in Paul
(Eerdmans, 2009)
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In much Pauline interpretation today a significant impasse has been reached. Scholars too often find themselves locked into one of two camps ‘ either Lutheran or New. Douglas Campbell here proposes a new, non-contractual, apocalyptic reading of many of the apostle’s most famous and most troublesome texts. Campbell holds thatthe intrusion of an alien, essentially modern, and theologically unhealthy theoretical construct into the interpretation of Paul has disordered the broader interpretation of his thought and created many of the difficulties that scholars now struggle with.It has, in fact, produced an individualistic and contractual construct that shares more with modern political traditions than with either orthodox theology or Paul’s first-century world. In order to counter-act that influence, Campbell argues that it needs to be isolated and brought to the foreground before the interpretation of Paul?s texts begins. New readings free from this intrusive paradigm become possible and surprising new interpretations unfold. The Deliverance of God proves itself a unique and very important work for those looking for an accurate reading of Paul’s words.

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February 2009


© 2006-2009, Matthew Burgess. All rights reserved. Any unauthorized use of the original content of this website is strictly prohibited. Quotations or citations should include a link to this website. The views and opinions given here are my own and do not represent those of the University of Virginia (or anyone else, for that matter).

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