Biblical Studies is the collection of sub-fields that investigates the text of the Hebrew Bible and the Greek New Testament. It is also includes broader academic sub-fields that incorporate relevant disciplines such as literary criticism, theology, textual criticism, history, and liturgy. The Gorgias Biblical Studies series publishes monographs on the history, theology, redaction and literary criticism of the biblical texts. Perspectives on Hebrew Scriptures and its Contexts deals with the study of the Hebrew Bible and Biblical Hebrew and cognate languages. BiblicalIntersections explores various topics beyond theological or exclusively historical exegetical studies, including the relationship of Hebrew and Christian scripture to philosophy, sociology, anthropology, economics, cultural studies, intertextuality and literary studies.
Has the Old Testament Psalter been purposefully arranged? Does this arrangement convey an overall message? This book enters into the growing discussion regarding the canonical arrangement of the Psalms by examining Book IV (Pss 90-106) and considering the book's overall theological and thematic message within the literary context of the Psalter. This volume argues that Psalms 90-106 have been purposely arranged as a rejoinder to the previous three books, in response to the rise and fall of Davidic kingship. This hypothesis is tested by examining how Psalms 90-106 may have been purposely organized as a collection.
This volume combines Targum studies with Judaic studies. The author assigns different Targums each to a respective particular “Sitz im Leben”, stressing the close connection between Targum and Midrash literature. She challenges the assumption that all extant Targums were compiled for the Synagogue. Instead, she suggests that Targum Onqelos might have fulfilled a function in the context of the early beth din and demonstrates that Pseudo-Jonathan can be linked with the rhetorical practices which abounded in later amoraic, educational circles.
Aside from being the content of speeches by characters in narrative, how do passages of laws in the Pentateuch interact with the surrounding narratives? This book proposes that certain passages of law in Leviticus and Numbers offer direction for the interpretation of adjacent segments of narrative. This 'direction' may serve to emphasize select themes and concepts in narrative. Alternatively, it may misdirect readers, or suggest alternative options to more accessible interpretations for a stretch of narrative.
This interdisciplinary study integrates textual analysis of the Hebrew Bible and comparable ancient Near Eastern material with social theory and archaeology in order to articulate the ancient Israelites' taken-for-granted understandings of natural disasters, their intellectual and theological challenges to those understandings, and their intellectual and theological reconstructions thereof.
Since its inception at the beginning of the twentieth century, form criticism has diminished in popularity and use in recent years. Bryan H. Cribb’s studies demonstrates that, if appropriately modified, form criticism still has much to add to Old Testament studies. Using a synchronic and inductive approach to the text, Cribb engages in a form critical study of nine “death stories” in the Old Testament. In so doing, he not only provides substantial support for the existence of this genre, but he also shows how remarkably fruitful such a study can be in revealing the messages of these accounts.
An emerging consensus maintains that the exile was not as extensive as the Old Testament claims. However, that it held singular importance for the book of Jeremiah is beyond question. Modine argues that Jeremiah represents a range of options for understanding and responding to the events surrounding the destruction of Jerusalem and its temple. This volume reads the diverse contents of Jeremiah as a kind of dialogue between competing perceptions of the exile. The author argues that coherence is to be found precisely in the incoherent, as it reflects the communal trauma of exile.
This book argues that it is the rejection of Paul’s claims to be an apostle in the same sense as the other apostles that ultimately underlies his “mission to the Gentiles.” This argument is advanced through a careful analysis of Paul’s references to his “conversion” in Galatians 1:15-17 and 1 Corinthians 15:8, paying particular attention to Paul’s evocative use of the language of abortion. The contextualization of this curious self-description in 1 Corinthians 15:8 draws upon a growing body of work concerning an area of ancient life that continues to fascinate and perplex moderns; the exposure of unwanted infants.
This book argues that the genre of the seven messages in Revelation 2–3 is a hybrid prophetic oracle. This oracle is influenced by the Old Testament covenantal elements functioning as a set of lawsuit exhortations. Graves defends this by demonstrating the influence of the Ancient Near Eastern vassal treaty structure in the seven messages. Written in a readable format this work is both an excellent introduction to the book of Revelation as well as a fitting work for the apocalyptic specialist.
The Coups of Hazael and Jehu offers a narrative reconstruction of the events surrounding the rise of Hazael to the throne of Aram-Damascus and Jehu to the throne of Israel in the mid-eighth century. These near-simultaneous dynastic changes were parts of a major shift in the political, military, and economic structure of the Levant, which took place as the mighty armies of Assyria pushed into the region. The book argues that Jehu’s bloody overthrow of Joram and Hazael’s irregular seizure of power after the death of his predecessor were not independent events, but responses to the Assyrian threat.
Profound in its conclusions and targeted toward the exegete, this volume offers a clear method for establishing flow of thought, text hierarchy, and literary macrostructure in biblical Hebrew prose. The study contributes both to hermeneutical theory and to the study of Deuteronomy by arguing for the application of discourse linguistics alongside stylistic and semantic analysis in the interpretation of OT texts. It includes a brief literary-structural and theological commentary on Deuteronomy 5–11 that models the text grammatical approach and shows its benefits for exegesis.
This volume illustrates how Targum Psalms creatively interprets selected psalms and how those interpretations relate to other Jewish and Christian traditions, including early translations of the psalms, rabbinic Midrashim, the New Testament and early Church Fathers. The study of these Psalms suggests viewing Targum Psalms as a creative partner in the world of biblical interpretation, as opposed to a compilation of already existing midrashic material. Edwards portrays the Targum as a link between the written and oral Torah that leads its readers on a path to tradition.
The divine warrior is an important motif in the Old Testament, leading many to study profitably the motif in its most prominent manifestations in poetic texts. This study builds on that foundation by examining the divine warrior in detail in the exodus narrative to construct a broader picture of the motif in the Old Testament.
This volume contains twelve articles that shed new light on the Book of Isaiah, covering a wide array of historical, linguistic and theological topics. The various aspects of God’s intervention at different points of human history is a main focus of the studies. The collection is marked by a broad diversity in approaches and theological background, and is a useful tool especially for scholars, students and pastors.
Christianity as a movement developed within the already established, but volatile Jewish movement/religion, expressing a profound sense of inclusivism illustrated in the transcendence of social boundaries. In this book the dynamic reality of creating and transcending boundaries and the relationship between insiders and outsiders are explored by way of reflecting on mission and ethos.
Armenian text of the Prayers attributed to Ephrem the Syrian, with the first-ever translation into a western language. Utilizing a highly developed poetic rhythm, the author manifests a profound spirituality laying his own emptiness before the inexhaustible Mercy of God.
In this volume, a reprint of his 1966 monograph, H. J. W. Drijvers investigates the life and teachings of Bardaisan of Edessa, determining his place in the religious and cultural life of Edessa in the second half of the second century of the common era.
This unique manuscript of the East Syrian Syriac ‘Masora’ is essential for any study of early Syriac vocalization, accentuation, and punctuation. This volume presents a facsimile reproduction of this ‘masoretic’ manuscript. An introduction and comprehensive scriptural indices will be included in a forthcoming volume.
This book presents a detailed analysis of the Aramaic mnemonics, those short witty sentences written in Aramaic as memory aids in the margins of one of the oldest extant biblical Hebrew manuscripts, the Leningrad Codex (1008 CE). The material is presented in clear, user-friendly charts. Each mnemonic is set alongside the Hebrew verses it represents. This book demonstrates the ingenuity of the Masoretes in their grand endeavor to preserve the text of the Hebrew Bible precisely in the form that it had reached them.
Can No Physician be Found analyzes how religion, as an expression of a universal order, is applied to the medical practices in the cultures of ancient Egypt, Mesopotamia and Israel. The comparative approach sheds light on how religious concepts shaped not only the particular medical identity of each society, but also how they can simultaneously participate in a broader medical culture spanning the ancient Near East.
This volume contains the Syriac version, with English translation and copious literary and historical notes, of Eusebius’s small book on the martyrs of Palestine, edited from a Syriac manuscript dated to 411.
Wright’s edition of the homilies of the early Syriac father, Aphrahat, includes the text, critical apparatus, and notes on biblical citations, which are also indexed. The preface surveys Aphrahat’s life and deals with the manuscripts used.
Although scholars have often made inferences about the Greek texts that lay behind the Old Syriac and Peshitta versions of the Gospels, very few have ever attempted to formulate systematic rules for such inferences. This volume investigates a wide range of textual phenomena and formulates clear and simple rules for the use of Syriac texts as witnesses to the underlying Greek. It becomes possible to uncover errors that have accumulated during the evolution of the Greek New Testament textual apparatus. Williams argues these errors generally stem from the unjustified use of Syriac witnesses.
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