Markus BOCKMUEHL (Fitzwilliam College, Cambridge)
Decades of interpretative controversy have failed to provide a satisfactory explanation of what Judaean events, if any, might have occasioned St Paul's bitter invective in 1 Thessalonians 2:14-16. After re-examining the familiar arguments by B.A. Pearson and others for a non-Pauline interpolation, this study questions the widespread assumption that Jewish persecution of Christians cannot be substantiated prior to the first Jewish War. Rehearsing the evidence for hostile measures against Jewish believers c. AD 36 and again under Agrippa I in 41/42, the argument turns to the neglected suggestion by the sixth-century chronicler Malalas of Antioch that a further persecution of the Jerusalem church took place 'in the eighth year of Claudius' (AD 48/49). Such a course of events during the notorious procuratorship of Ventidius Cumanus would shed light not only on 1 Thessalonians 2, but possibly also on the setting of Galatians. In any case, both Josephus and rabbinic literature indicate that the death of Agrippa I was widely perceived as the beginning of a disastrous downturn in Jewish fortunes, to which Paul may be alluding in v. 17. Ironically, a number of these points were familiar to scholars in the 18th and 19th centuries, but seem since then to have been forgotten.
THE IMPLIED ETHICS OF THE FOURTH GOSPEL: A REINTERPRETATION OF THE DECALOGUE
Jey J. KANAGARAJ (Union Biblical Seminary, India)
Despite the lack of explicit and detailed ethical teachings in the Fourth Gospel, it seems that the Jewish ethics embodied in the Decalogue under-gird John's presentation of the Gospel. The words 'keep my command-ments', used by Jesus in the Fourth Gospel, give us the key for under-standing the implied ethics of the Fourth Gospel. An analysis of John's Gospel shows that its author reflects the Decalogue in various parts of the Gospel. We have evidence that John reinterprets the commandments positively and redemptively by focussing on Jesus as the one who fulfils the commandments and who enables those who believe in him to fulfil them. Such an interpretation of Yahweh's commandments, which can be identified as Jesus' commandments in the Gospel, cannot simply be dismissed as accidental but rather reflects a conscious reinterpretation of the Law.
THE STRANDS OF WISDOM TRADITION IN INTERTESTAMENTAL JUDAISM: ORIGINS, DEVELOPMENTS AND CHARACTERISTICS
Cornelis BENNEMA (London Bible College)
The Jewish wisdom corpus tends to receive a different treatment from OT and NT scholars. Whereas OT scholars tend to shy away from any schematisation due to the complexity of the wisdom tradition, NT scholars do not always perceive sufficiently the distinctions within the wisdom material. This article will attempt to create a balance between these two positions. We will elucidate the intertestamental Jewish sapiential tradition, and identify four strands-the Torah-centred, the Spirit-centred, the Apocalyptic and the Qumranian wisdom tradition-which are rooted in the OT. Moreover, this article will show the origins, developments and main characteristics of these four strands of Jewish wisdom tradition.
INNOCENT SUFFERING IN EGYPT
Daniel P. BRICKER (Azusa Pacific University, Azusa)
There are many studies exploring the idea of innocent suffering and the concept of theodicy as it occurs in the literature of ancient Mesopotamia and Israel, but this is not so much the case with ancient Egyptian literature. This article will explore this matter in regard to ancient Egyptian documents. The point is to discover what factors in Egyptian culture led to the exclusion of theodicy and the idea of innocent suffering from their world view and literature.
1 CORINTHIANS 7 IN THE LIGHT OF THE GRAECO-ROMAN MARRIAGE AND DIVORCE PAPYRI
David INSTONE-BREWER (Tyndale House, Cambridge)
The language and social background of 1 Corinthians 7 are compared with that of the Greek and Latin marriage and divorce papyri. These papyri are found to be particularly useful for illuminating the issue of divorce-by-separation, which Paul appears to be combating in vv. 10-15. They also give insights into Paul's unusual use of aphiémi for 'divorce', and the curious absence of teaching about remarriage in this chapter. Paul is found to have a positive approach to marriage, emphasising the commitment it involves, while warning that bringing up a family was difficult at the present time of famine.
SHOULD THE HOLOCAUST FORCE US TO RETHINK OUR VIEW OF GOD AND EVIL?
John J. JOHNSON (Wilmingham, Delaware)
This paper grapples with the impact the Holocaust has had on Jewish-Christian relations, and comes to the conclusion that the problem of evil is an age-old dilemma for biblical theists, and does not take on special meaning in light of the Holocaust (even though that was indeed a horrific event). The Holocaust must be seen in proper perspective, alongside all the many other large-scale atrocities which have occurred throughout history. The Holocaust raises the same issues as are found in the Book of Job, though the proper response is not a radical rethinking of Christian theology but, as Job long ago discovered, a humble, biblical acceptance of the limits of human understanding when faced with apparently pointless suffering.
2 SAMUEL 8
Robert M. GOOD (Rhode Island)
2 Samuel 8 may reflect an inscription or text contemporary with the reign of King David. It has a number of features that could be explained if an inscription lay behind the biblical text, the most striking of which is its repetitive naming of the monarch, paralleling Darius' Behistun Inscription.
CORINTH IN THE FIRST CENTURY AD: THE SEARCH FOR ANOTHER CLASS
Dirk JONGKIND (St. Edmund's College, Cambridge)
A consideration of living spaces in ancient Corinth suggests that it is not possible to characterise its society as one made up merely of a very small number of élite alongside vast numbers of non-élite who were extremely poor. The variety of housing suggests the existence of another class.
TERMINOLOGICAL PATTERNS AND THE DIVINE EPITHET SHADDAI
W. WARNING (Schulzentrum Seminar Marienhöhe, Darmstadt)
By juxtaposing the first seven occurrences of the divine epithet Shaddai in Genesis and Exodus it becomes evident that they are both terminologically and thematically interrelated and culminate in Exodus 6:3.
Dissertation SummariesRECONSTRUCTING THE DOCTRINE OF THE SUFFICIENCY OF SCRIPTURE
Timothy WARD (All Sainst Church, Crowborough)
Although the doctrine of the sufficiency of Scripture has been a central doctrine in Protestant orthodox theology, it is, along with the general Reformation principle of sola Scriptura, and confessions of related attributes of Scripture (clarity, perfection and necessity), regularly treated superficially in both scholarly and popular con-temporary writing. It is often rejected hastily, with little acknowledgement made of its fundamental place in Christian theology and belief both before and after the Reformation. It is often confessed unreflectively, without due recognition that it is a confession which must be argued for, and located carefully in relation to the fundamental trinitarian, christological and pneumatological doctrines of Christian theology.