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Paul and the Creation of Christian Identity

Hardback|Oct 2006
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$65.00

"Paul is traditionally viewed as separating from the churches of Peter and of Jewish Christ-followers to promote his own mission, eventually triumphing in the creation of a church with a gentile identity. Campbell argues that the Pauline mission represents only...


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"Paul is traditionally viewed as separating from the churches of Peter and of Jewish Christ-followers to promote his own mission, eventually triumphing in the creation of a church with a gentile identity. Campbell argues that the Pauline mission represents only one strand of the Christ-movement that should not be universalized to signify the whole. In conjunction with his gentile mission, Paul acknowledges Jewish identity as an abiding reality, rather than as a temporary, weak form of faith in Christ."--BOOK JACKET.
-Publisher

In the dominant interpretation of the Antioch incident, Paul is viewed as separating from Peter and Jewish Christianity to lead his own independent mission which was eventually to triumph in the creation of a church with a gentile identity. Paul's gentile mission, however, represented only one strand of the Christ movement, but has been universalized to signify the whole. The consequence of this view of Paul is that the earliest diversity in which he operated and which he affirmed has been anachronistically diminished almost to the point of obliteration. There is little recognition of the Jewish form of Christianity and that Paul by and large related positively to it as evidenced in Romans 14-15. Here, Paul acknowledges Jewish identity as an abiding reality rather than as a temporary and weak form of faith in Christ. This book argues that diversity in Christ was fundamental to Paul and that particularly in his ethical guidance, this received recognition. Paul's relation to Judaism is best understood not as a reaction to his former faith but as a transformation resulting from his vision of Christ. In this, the past is not obliterated but transformed and thus continuity is maintained so that the identity of Christianity is neither that of a new religion nor of a Jesus cult. In Christ, the past is reconfigured and thus the diversity of humanity continues within the church, which can celebrate the richness of differing identities under the Lordship of Christ.
-Publisher

PRODUCT DETAIL

William Campbell

William S. Campbell, Reader in Biblical Studies, University of Wales, is author of Paul's Gospel in Inter-Cultural Context (1992) and is Editor of Journal of Beliefs and Values.

  • Contents; Preface; Abbreviations; Introduction; 2. Pauline Interpretation And Christian Identity: Aspects Of The History Of Research; 3. Paul's Theologizing Concerning The Other; 4. Paul's Peculiar Problem: The Creation Of Gentile Identity In Christ. 5. The Tripartite Context: Paul's Mission Between State And Synagogue; 6. I Laid The Foundation: Paul The Architect Of Christian Identity?; 7. Paul's Attitude Towards Jewish Identity In Romans; 8. Self-understanding And The People Of God: Israel In Roman; 9. Christ Defined Identity; 10. Conclusion: Paul's Theology As A Theology Of Transformation.; 11. Epilogue.

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