THE ANTIQUITY OF PSALTER SHAPE EFFORTS
Steffen Jenkins (firstname.lastname@example.org)
In recent decades, Psalms scholarship has paid increasing attention to the overall editorial arrangement of the book of Psalms, and to the placement of individual psalms as their literary context. An obvious objection to this enterprise is its novelty, especially since the Psalms have enjoyed unparalleled exegetical attention in the history of Christian and Jewish exegesis. This objection is fed by the nearly ubiquitous inaccurate presentation of Psalter-shape readings as originating in 1985 with Gerald Wilson. While Wilson has changed the landscape and is deservedly named as the recent ancestor of this project, that history is inaccurate. We will show that a desire to understand the shape of the whole Psalter, and its editorial intention, can be dated to the second century, leading through various stages to full-length commentaries following this approach being attempted in the nineteenth century. Finally, without detracting from Wilson’s unique contribution, we will show that he was not alone in his own day but that others were engaged in this task concurrently and in the decades before him.
HOSEA 4 AND 11, AND THE STRUCTURE OF HOSEA
John Goldingay (email@example.com)
Hosea 4:1-3 pronounces an indictment on the entire world as a way of getting home a message to Ephraim. It opens a series of biddings in 4:1–9:9 that seek to get Ephraim to face the facts about itself and about the danger it is in. Hosea 9:10–13:16 [14:1] then comprises a series of reminders of past and present realities in the relationship between Israel and Yahweh. Within it, 11:1-11 is not a self-contained pericope marking mercy’s final victory over wrath, but part of 11:1–12:1 , which continues to urge Ephraim to choose between doom and hope.
SHOW ME THE MONEY: ’Jesus, Visual Aids, and the Tribute Question
Clayton Croy (firstname.lastname@example.org)
The question about paying tribute to Caesar is one of the most incendiary queries ever posed to Jesus. It seems straightforward, but either a ‘yes’ or ‘no’ response is politically perilous. Jesus’s answer seems equally straightforward, but scholars have debated its meaning, even the basic question of whether it is affirmative or negative. But many analyses have erred by considering the logion apart from Jesus’s use of the coin as a visual aid. After a brief survey of visual aids in biblical narratives and classical rhetoric, it becomes clear that the coin adds materially to Jesus’s response and clarifies his meaning.
DATING LUKE-ACTS: Further Arguments for an Early Date
David Seccombe (email@example.com)
Alexander Mittelstaedt (2005) has provided new impetus to a long-standing opinion that Luke-Acts was written in the early 60s of the first century AD. Karl L. Armstrong (2017) provides a recent overview of the dating debate and argues that an early date makes best sense of the extensive evidence. This paper suggests three considerations arising from the historical character of the rest of the century which support Mittelstaedt’s and Armstrong’s view. The first: AD 66–98 was a time of intense anti-Jewish sentiment, in which articulation of the nationalistic Jewish hopes expressed in the third Gospel and Acts would have been dangerous, and unlikely for a careful author. Second, it was also a time that ill accords with Acts’ assumption of Jewish legitimacy and its plea for the acceptance of Gentile Christianity. Third, the attention given to the voyage as Acts draws to its conclusion bespeaks an author who knew nothing of the cataclysmic avalanche of events that took place from AD 62–70.
THE INFLUENCE OF THE MURDER COMMANDMENT IN 1 CORINTHIANS
William Andrew Williamson and Brian S. Rosner (firstname.lastname@example.org / email@example.com)
This article investigates the influence of the Decalogue commandment not to murder in 1 Corinthians as a case study of Paul’s dependence on the law for ethics. Paul does not quote or allude to the murder commandment in the letter. However, there is good evidence that the murder commandment, in line with its interpretation in the Jewish Scriptures and early Jewish moral teaching, is a fundamental presupposition of Paul’s moral teaching in 1 Corinthians. This can be seen in Paul’s use of murder as a metaphor and of antisocial vices as synecdoches for the murder commandment, his concern about the moral impurity of such murder, and the close relationship between Paul’s call to love and his call to forsake such antisocial vices. Reading 1 Corinthians with the murder commandment in mind, especially as it was understood in ancient Judaism, sheds light on the nature of the problems in the church of God in Corinth and clarifies Paul’s response to the problems in the church.
THE TYPOLOGICAL EXPECTATION OF PSALM 68 AND ITS APPLICATION IN EPHESIANS 4:8
Joshua M. Greever (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Paul’s use of Psalm 68:18 in Ephesians 4:8 has historically been a crux interpretum for New Testament hermeneutics and Pauline scholars alike, for Paul appears to misapply the features of the psalm to Christ. In light of recent scholarship, this paper argues that Paul’s apparent misapplication of the psalm is resolved by a proper recognition of the psalm’s typological framework. Paul applied Psalm 68:18 to Christ in light of the psalm’s typological expectation and its redemptive–historical fulfilment in Christ. The psalm’s typological indicators are evident in view of its retrospective and prospective orientation and the probable allusions to Exodus 15 and Judges 5. Yhwh’s ascension, captives, and gifts in Psalm 68:18 correspond to and anticipate a greater ascension, captives, and gifts. The eschatological interpretation of the psalm explains its use in Ephesians 4:7-16, for it sheds light on the unusual appearance of διό introducing the citation, the textual modifications Paul introduced to the citation, Paul’s choice of Psalm 68:18 in particular, and Paul’s emphasis on ministers of the word in Ephesians 4:11-16. This analysis absolves Paul from the charge of hermeneutical insensitivity and aptly illustrates his hermeneutical approach to the Old Testament Scriptures.
THE PUNCTUATION OF HEBREWS 10:2 AND ITS SIGNIFICANCE FOR THE DATE OF HEBREWS
Philip Church (email@example.com)
The significance of Hebrews 10:2 for the date of the letter has been the subject of debate, with some scholars finding it decisive for a pre-70 CE date and others denying it any importance, proposing (rightly) that the writer is arguing theoretically about sacrificial activity extending since the time of Aaron. The 2017 publication of the Tyndale House Greek New Testament brings the debate into sharp focus with Hebrews 10:2a punctuated as a statement (‘If the sacrifices were effective, they would not have ceased to be offered’) rather than a question (‘If the sacrifices were effective, would they not have ceased to be offered?’). Reading the clause as a statement implies that the temple has fallen and sacrifices have ceased, leading to the conclusion that Hebrews postdates this event. An examination of the manuscript evidence, the history of interpretation, the syntax, and the context shows that the clause should be read as a rhetorical question expecting a positive answer from the readers: ‘Yes, the sacrifices would have ceased if they were effective.’ Even if the writer were arguing theoretically, this would be a difficult answer had the temple been destroyed. This makes a pre-70 date more likely than a post-70 date.
THE PATRISTIC ROOTS OF SATISFACTION ATONEMENT THEORIESDid the Church Fathers Affirm Only Christus Victor?
James David Meyer (firstname.lastname@example.org)
In his work Christus Victor, Gustaf Aulén argued that Anselm of Canterbury’s account of the atonement was foreign to ancient Christian belief. In particular, Aulén argued that Anselm diverged from the original understanding of the doctrine as presented by the church fathers. Aulén argued that the Eastern church rightly endorsed a model of the atonement that he called the ‘classic view’, while Anselm in the West later wrongly developed a theory of satisfaction that Aulén called the ‘Latin’ view. This critique, by extension, applies to other ‘Anselmic’ theories of atonement such as penal substitution that, like Anselm’s, also affirm that Christ’s death in some way satisfied God’s requirements in response to human sin. Patristic literature shows, however, that Aulén’s conclusion is more imposition than exposition. Fathers from both East and West commonly advanced theories that comport well with what Aulén called the Latin view alongside Christus Victor.