On May 3rd, John Barclay gave the inaugural lecture of the Centre for the Social-Scientific Study of the Bible, of St. Mary’s University College, UK. Barclay’s lecture, “Paul and the Gift: Gift-Theory, Grace and Critical Issues in the Interpretation of Paul,” summarized much of what will undoubtedly appear at length in his forthcoming book on Paul and the Gift (Eerdmans). Thankfully, St. Mary’s has made the video lecture available on YouTube.
Thursday, 16 May 2013
John Barclay, “Paul and the Gift: Gift-Theory, Grace and Critical Issues in the Interpretation of Paul”Posted by JGoodrich under Academia, Ancient History, Conferences, Durham, Paul, Paul and His Interpreters
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Friday, 31 August 2012
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Cambridge University Press has begun advertising the forthcoming release (January 2013) of Mark D. Mathews’s monograph, Riches, Poverty, and the Faithful: Perspectives on Wealth in the Second Temple Period and the Apocalypse of John (SNTSMS 154). This release is very exciting. Mark is a fellow Durham grad; we started together in 2007 and submitted our theses within days of each other in 2010. Mark and I were also neighbors in Durham for two years. His doctoral work was supervised by Loren Stuckenbruck, so when Loren moved to Princeton in 2009, Mark and his family followed him there. Mark is now in full-time church ministry at Bethany Presbyterian Church, near Philadelphia.
Here are the book summary and table of contents:
In the book of Revelation, John appeals to the faithful to avoid the temptations of wealth, which he connects with evil and disobedience within secular society. New Testament scholars have traditionally viewed his somewhat radical stance as a reaction to the social injustices and idolatry of the imperial Roman cults of the day. Mark D. Mathews argues that John’s rejection of affluence was instead shaped by ideas in the Jewish literature of the Second Temple period which associated the rich with the wicked and viewed the poor as the righteous. Mathews explores how traditions preserved in the Epistle of Enoch and later Enochic texts played a formative role in shaping John’s theological perspective. This book will be of interest to those researching poverty and wealth in early Christian communities and the relationship between the traditions preserved in the Dead Sea Scrolls and New Testament.
Table of Contents
Part I. Introduction: 1. The question of wealth in the Apocalypse
Part II. The Language of Wealth and Poverty in the Second Temple Period: Introduction
2. Dead Sea Scrolls: non-sectarian Aramaic documents
3. Dead Sea Scrolls: non-sectarian Hebrew documents
4. Dead Sea Scrolls: sectarian Hebrew documents
5. Other Jewish literature
Part III. Wealth, Poverty, and the Faithful Community in the Apocalypse of John: Introduction
6. The language of wealth and poverty in the seven messages – Rev 2-3
7. The present eschatological age – Rev 4-6
8. Buying and selling in Satan’s world – Rev 12-13, 18
9. Final conclusions.
Thursday, 3 May 2012
I am pleased to announce that my Durham thesis is now published. I’ve just received word that the publisher has received the advance copies and that the rest of the stock will arrive at their warehouse very soon. All of this comes some weeks ahead of schedule, which is quite nice, since in my youthful impatience I feel as if the entire process from submission to release, while uncomprisingly thorough, has been rather lengthy!
I’m sure it will take some additional weeks for booksellers to receive their stock, and even longer for libraries to process and place volumes on their shelves. But the book is already viewable on amazon and googlebooks, for those of you who wish to take a peek. It retails at a very reasonable $99 (yikes!). But I guess that’s why we write book reviews.
Thanks are due to Cambridge University Press for their courtesy and professionalism along the way, as well as to my wonderful wife and family for their patience and support since the writing process began back in the fall of 2007 (wow, that seems so long ago now!).
Here is all the relevant data:
John K. Goodrich, Paul as an Administrator of God in 1 Corinthians (Society for New Testament Monograph Series 152; Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2012). xiii + 248pp. Hardback. $99.00. ISBN 9781107018624.
This book looks in detail at Paul’s description of apostles in 1 Corinthians 4 and 9 as divinely appointed administrators (oikonomoi) and considers what this tells us about the nature of his own apostolic authority. John Goodrich investigates the origin of this metaphor in light of ancient regal, municipal and private administration, initially examining the numerous domains in which oikonomoi were appointed in the Graeco-Roman world, before situating the image in the private commercial context of Roman Corinth. Examining the social and structural connotations attached to private commercial administration, Goodrich contemplates what Paul’s metaphor indicates about apostleship in general terms as well as how he uses the image to defend his apostolic rights. He also analyses the purpose and limits of Paul’s authority – how it is constructed, asserted and contested – by examining when and how Paul uses and refuses to exercise the rights inherent in his position.
Table of Contents
1. Apostolic authority in 1 Corinthians
Part I. Oikonomoi as Administrators in Graeco-Roman Antiquity
2. Oikonomoi as regal administrators
3. Oikonomoi as civic administrators
4. Oikonomoi as private administrators
Part II. Paul’s Administrator Metaphor in 1 Corinthians
5. Identifying Paul’s metaphor in 1 Corinthians
6. Interpreting Paul’s metaphor in 1 Corinthians 4.1–5
7. Interpreting Paul’s metaphor in 1 Corinthians 9.16–23
Index of passages
Index of authors
Monday, 17 October 2011
I enjoyed two excellent papers last week, as the NT Research Seminar started up again here in Durham. There has been an attempt to include more research students this year, and the first papers were by two of them: Lionel Windsor and Wesley Hill, both third-years supervised by Prof. Francis Watson. Both papers looked at aspects of Romans. Lionel’s project focuses on Paul’s identity through the perspective of his vocation as a Jew. In this light, Paul’s missionary activity, for example, can be seen as a fulfilment of his Jewish calling: ‘providing God’s revelation to non-Jews’. Lionel offered a reading of Romans 2:17-29 from this viewpoint, raising issues about the Law and making the interesting suggestion, among others, that the setting imagined by the text was the synagogue. Wes’ thesis is equally ambitious, seeking to ground Paul’s Christology in the ‘matrix of trinitarian relationships’. In other words, the ‘place’ of Christ cannot be understood apart from the relationships with Father and Spirit. He sought to demonstrate this by reference to Romans 4, and in particular, that Paul is reading the example of Abraham through the relationship between God and Jesus, and that God raised Jesus provides a hermeneutic for reading the Abraham story.
For those who are interested, the rest of the term’s seminars are below.
17 October Dr Benjamin Schliesser (University of Zurich), “The Dialectics of Faith and Doubt in Paul and James”
24 October Prof René Bloch (University of Bern), “Who was Philo of Alexandria? Tracing autobiographic passages in Philo”
31 October Dr Simon Gathercole (University of Cambridge), “The Religious Outlook of the Gospel of Thomas”
7 November Prof John Barclay, Paul and the Gift (book preview)
14 November Dorothee Bertschmann, “The Good, the Bad, and the State: What is the meaning of to agathon in Romans 13.1-7?”
Leonard Wee: “Features in Paul’s Summaries of OT Historical Narratives”
28 November Prof Lewis Ayres, “Grammar, Polemic and the Development of Patristic Exegesis 150-250”
5 December Dr Eddie Adams (King’s College London), “Were the Pauline Churches House Churches?”
12 December Prof Francis Watson, Gospel Writing: A Canonical Perspective (book preview)
Thursday, 22 September 2011
I was quickly glancing through the receptions in the hardcopy SBL session guide and saw a number of university receptions listed, but none for Durham. I then emailed John Barclay to inquire about this, and he has assured me there is one scheduled, which was neither printed in the hardcopy guide nor listed (as far as I can tell) on the SBL website; it is, however, included on the AAR website as session M20-436. For those interested in attending Durham’s SBL reception, here are the details: 8:00-10:30pm, November 20th, at the InterContinental Hotel. Do pass the word along.
I don’t know the room assignment yet, since John did not specify in his email and that information on the AAR website is restricted to academy members. But I’ve emailed John again to find out and will add that information to this post once I hear back.
Tuesday, 30 August 2011
Now that I am transitioning personally and professionally–I’m now teaching at Houston Baptist University if you didn’t know–it gave me an opportunity to reconsider what to do with the blog. It’s blindingly obvious that once I finished my studies I’ve had trouble maintaining momentum with it. I think it’s been helpful to others, so I didn’t want to cancel it. As a result, in keeping with its name Dunelm Road, I’ve enlisted a few friends from my time in Durham (Dunelm is Durham in Latin) to join on as full contributors. As such it will represent some of the Durham Diaspora. Here’s the new crowd: John Goodrich (teaching at Moody in Chicago), Ed Kaneen (in the midst of PhD studies at Durham), and Jason Maston (teaching at Highland Theological College in Dingwall). Welcome, mates. I expect between us we’ll be able to string together something more interesting than what has been posted of late.
Thursday, 2 June 2011
I got an email from David Wilkinson, principal of St John’s College, this afternoon:
We are delighted that the announcement has been made of the appointment of the Bishop-Elect of Durham, Justin Welby. Justin is a former John’s and Cranmer student and is currently Dean of Liverpool Cathedral. He trained at Cranmer Hall in the early 1990s, having left a career as Finance Director of an oil company. He was based in Paris for 5 years, speaks fluent French, and also has links with Nigeria.
He spent some years in the reconciliation work at Coventry Cathedral, with international experience of conflict resolution and terrorist mediation. He often represents the Archbishop of Canterbury in Nigeria (he is visiting there shortly). We are not yet aware of the timing of his official start in Durham but it may be 6 months away.
Wednesday, 27 April 2011
Durham New Testament Seminar: Easter Term 2011
2 May, Dr Stephen Chester (North Park Theological Seminary), ‘Righteousness and Reciprocity: Justification by Faith and Participation in Christ in John Calvin’s Pauline Exegesis’
9 May, Prof John Moles (University of Newcastle), “The Lukan Preface”
16 May, Dr Cecilia Wassén (University of Upsala), “Did Jesus Challenge the Purity Laws? A Close Reading of Mark 5:21-43”
23 May, Dr Annette Merz (University of Utrecht), “Looking at the Letter of
Mara bar Sarapion in the Context of Ancient Epistolary Theory and Practice”
30 May, Prof Dr Jens Herzer (University of Leipzig), “The Narrative Characteristics of the Pastoral Epistles in the Light of Ancient Epistolography”
Tuesday, 9 November 2010
Here’s an invitation for those of you who will be at SBL:
The Department of Theology and Religion
Durham University, UK
cordially invites you to a
Wine and Cheese Reception
21st November 2010
the Hyatt Regency Hotel
Friends, alumni/ae, and prospective graduate
students are all welcome to meet current faculty
members and research students
Pretty much that means, anybody that wants to come is more than welcome.
Monday, 1 November 2010
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Busy weekend but I wanted to get in the habit of summarising the presentations of the people who present.
Last Monday (Oct 25), Shane Berg from Princeton Theological Seminary presented a paper entitled ‘Knowing and Obeying the Law in Ben Sira’. This draws from his larger work on ‘religious epistemology’, which is a bit more neutral terminology for what has been termed ‘revelation’ in the past.
The main part of his paper was an exposition of two passages in Ben Sira: sections from chapters 15-17 (16.24-17.14 and 15.11-20) that speak about knowing and doing the Law. One key aspect of Ben Sira’s argument was the juxtaposition of allusions to creation (Gen 1-3) and the giving of the Law. The thrust thus runs that God gave this knowledge of what to do to everyone, so the Jews have no excuse not to follow it. It was also noted later in discussion afterwards that Paul too juxtaposes creation and Law in Romans 7.
Berg then mentioned two Qumran documents [update: now that I've got back to the handout 4Q417 1 i 16-18 and 1 QHa VII, 12-14] who focused upon the limitation of true knowledge to those within the community based on a more deterministic view of God’s election.
It was an interesting paper, and it stirred up a lively discussion afterwards. Berg also spoke very highly of Greg Schmidt Goering’s book on Ben Sira and the Election of Israel as it discusses the dialectic of universal and particular and the mix of Wisdom and Torah.