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Tag: Paul

Paul’s priestly ministry in Romans 15: a fulfilment of Isaiah 60-61

In my book, I argue that Paul’s description of his “priestly” ministry in Romans 15:14-33 is drawn from Isaiah 60-61, which describes Israel’s eschatological priestly role toward the nations. This reinforces Paul’s depiction of his apostolic ministry as an eschatological Jew-Gentile dynamic.

When Paul used the word “Judaism” in Galatians 1:13-14, what was he talking about?

In my book, I argue that the rare word Ἰουδαϊσμός–which is usually translated “Judaism” in our Bibles (Gal 1:13-14)–doesn’t mean “Judaism” in the modern sense of a system of religious thought. Rather, it should be understood in a vocational sense.

“We are the circumcision” (Philippians 3:3) is a reference to Jewish preachers (i.e. Paul and Timothy), not to all Christians

In my book, I argue that the phrase “we are the circumcision” in Phil 3:3 should be understood as a reference to Paul and Timothy, as Jewish teachers of Gentiles. Paul is using the term “circumcision” in order to claim a status for himself and Timothy as true (Jewish) teachers of Gentiles, in direct opposition to rival Jewish teachers.

Does the metaphor of the olive tree (Romans 11:17-24) undermine the notion of Jewish distinctiveness in Paul’s thought?

A number of interpreters regard Paul’s metaphor of the olive tree in Rom 11:17–24 as evidence that Paul is seeking to include Gentiles within a redefined Israel. I contend that this understanding is not consistent with the meaning and purpose of this passage.

PhD thesis: approved and now available online (Paul and the Vocation of Israel)

This dissertation argues that Paul’s apostolic mission to the Gentiles was the definitive expression of his divine vocation as an Israelite, and thus of his Jewish identity. For many of Paul’s Jewish contemporaries, Israel’s divine vocation was to keep and to teach the precepts of the Law of Moses as an exemplary witness to God’s power and wisdom. For Paul, however, Jewish identity was expressed primarily by preaching the gospel of Christ, as the fulfilment of the Law of Moses, to the Gentiles. This is seen most clearly in Paul’s letter to the Romans.

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