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The Beginnings Of Jewishness

Author: Shaye J. D. Cohen
Publisher: Univ of California Press
ISBN: 0520226933
Size: 31.28 MB
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This is a study of the notion of Jewishness from c. 200 BCE to c. 200 CE. Reasonable and well-informed people disputed whether a given person was Jewish or not; Cohen opens by discussing just such an argument, about Herod the Great.

Contesting Conversion

Author: Matthew Thiessen
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0199793670
Size: 18.29 MB
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Winner of the Manfred Lautenschlaeger Award for Theological Promise Matthew Thiessen offers a nuanced and wide-ranging study of the nature of Jewish thought on Jewishness, circumcision, and conversion. Examining texts from the Hebrew Bible, Second Temple Judaism, and early Christianity, he gives a compelling account of the various forms of Judaism from which the early Christian movement arose. Beginning with analysis of the Hebrew Bible, Thiessen argues that there is no evidence that circumcision was considered to be a rite of conversion to Israelite religion. In fact, circumcision, particularly the infant circumcision practiced within Israelite and early Jewish society, excluded from the covenant those not properly descended from Abraham. In the Second Temple period, many Jews began to subscribe to a definition of Jewishness that enabled Gentiles to become Jews. Other Jews, such as the author of Jubilees, found this definition problematic, reasserting a strictly genealogical conception of Jewish identity. As a result, some Gentiles who underwent conversion to Judaism in this period faced criticism because of their suspect genealogy. Thiessen's examination of the way in which Jews in the Second Temple period perceived circumcision and conversion allows a deeper understanding of early Christianity. Contesting Conversion shows that careful attention to a definition of Jewishness that was based on genealogical descent has crucial implications for understanding the variegated nature of early Christian mission to the Gentiles in the first century C.E.

As It Was In The Beginning

Author: Mark Owens
Publisher: Wipf and Stock Publishers
ISBN: 1498202403
Size: 41.72 MB
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Paul's comments regarding the new creation in 2 Cor 5:17 and Gal 6:15 have tended to be understood somewhat myopically. Some argue the phrase "new creation" solely refers to the inward transformation believers have experienced through faith in Jesus Christ. Others argue this phrase should be understood cosmologically and linked with Isaiah's "new heavens and new earth." Still others advocate an ecclesiological interpretation of this phrase that views Paul referring to the new community formed around Jesus Christ. In As It Was in the Beginning, Mark Owens argues that the concept of "new creation" should be understood (like the gospel) within the realm of Paul's anthropology, cosmology, and ecclesiology. At the same time, he also argues that Paul's understanding of new creation belongs within an Urzeit-Endzeit typological framework, especially within 2 Cor 5-6 and Eph 1-2. This reading of new creation attempts to give due weight to the use of Isaianic traditions in 2 Cor 5:17 and Eph 2:13, 17. Owens demonstrates that the vision of new creation in 2 Corinthians and Galatians is starkly similar to that of Ephesians.

Why This New Race

Author: Denise Kimber Buell
Publisher: Columbia University Press
ISBN: 0231133359
Size: 56.70 MB
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Denise Kimber Buell radically rethinks the origins of Christian identity, arguing that race and ethnicity played a central role in early Christian theology. Focusing on texts written before the legalization of Christianity in 313 C.E., including Greek apologetic treatises, martyr narratives, and works by Clement of Alexandria, Origen, Justin Martyr, and Tertullian, Buell shows how philosophers and theologians defined Christians as a distinct group within the Roman world, characterizing Christianness as something both fixed in its essence and fluid in its acquisition through conversion. Buell demonstrates how this view allowed Christians to establish boundaries around the meaning of Christianness and to develop the kind of universalizing claims aimed at uniting all members of the faith. Her arguments challenge generations of scholars who have refused to acknowledge ethnic reasoning in early Christian discourses. They also provide crucial insight into the historical legacy of Christian anti-Semitism and contemporary issues of race.

Judah Between East And West

Author: Lester L. Grabbe
Publisher: A&C Black
ISBN: 0567526267
Size: 63.27 MB
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This is a collection of essays examining the period of transition between Persian and Greek rule of Judah, ca. 400-200 BCE. Subjects covered include the archaeology of Maresha/Marisa, Jewish identity, Hellenization/Hellenism, Ptolemaic administration in Judah, biblical and Jewish literature of the early Greek period, the size and status of Jerusalem, the Samaritans in the transition period, and Greek foundations in Palestine.

American Judaism In Popular Culture

Author: Leonard Jay Greenspoon
ISBN: 9781881871569
Size: 31.50 MB
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The series Studies in Jewish Civilization, based on the annual symposium of the Klutznick Chair in Jewish Civilization and Harris Center for Judaic Studies, examines Jewish history and culture around the world and throughout history. Volume 17 includes fourteen essays that provide an overview of Jews and Judaism in American popular culture. Relevant discussions of music, film, television, literature, cartoons, sports, and material culture inform our current understanding of the influence that Jewish culture has in modern American society. Taken together, these essays make a strong case that appropriate analysis of popular culture is essential for a proper understanding of something as multifaceted and varied as American Judaism and the American Jewish community. The essays recognize, even if they cannot precisely define, something distinctly “Jewish” and distinctively “American” in each of the individuals and groups featured in this collection.

Sectarianism In Early Judaism

Author: Society of Biblical Literature. Meeting
Publisher: Equinox
ISBN: 9781845530839
Size: 65.54 MB
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This volume takes advantage of the latest sociological perspectives on sect formation and development and applies them to the study of Early Judaism, providing fresh insights on early Jewish sectarianism. The studies in this volume lay the groundwork for further application of sociological models in the study of ancient sects and are a timely contribution to social-scientific research in biblical studies, an increasingly important discipline in the field.