Between Athens and Jerusalem: Jewish Identity in the Hellenistic Diaspora / Edition 2

Between Athens and Jerusalem: Jewish Identity in the Hellenistic Diaspora / Edition 2

by John J. Collins
Pub. Date:
Eerdmans, William B. Publishing Company


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Between Athens and Jerusalem: Jewish Identity in the Hellenistic Diaspora / Edition 2

One of the most creative and consequential collisions in Western culture involved the encounter of Judaism with Hellenism. In this widely acclaimed study of the Jews who lived in Hellenistic Egypt, “between Athens and Jerusalem,” John J. Collins examines the literature of Hellenistic Judaism, treating not only the introductory questions of date, authorship, and provenance but also the larger question of Jewish identity in the Greco-Roman world.

First published in 1984, this landmark study by one of the world's leading experts in Hellinistic Judaism is now fully revised and updated to take into account the best of recent scholarship.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780802843722
Publisher: Eerdmans, William B. Publishing Company
Publication date: 11/02/1999
Series: Biblical Resource Series
Edition description: REVISED
Pages: 343
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x (d)

About the Author

John J. Collins is Holmes Professor of Old Testament Criticism and Interpretation at Yale Divinity School. His many other books include The Apocalyptic Imagination: An Introduction to Jewish Apocalyptic Literature, Early Judaism: A Comprehensive Overview, and The Oxford Handbook of Apocalyptic Literature.

Table of Contents

Preface to the Second Editionxiii
The Diaspora Setting3
Gentile Perceptions of Judaism6
Jewish Apologetics14
Hellenistic Judaism and Judea16
The Constraints of the Tradition19
Relations with the Gentile Environment24
Part 1National and Political Identity
1.The Uses of the Past29
The Faithful Chroniclers33
The Followers of Demetrius35
History and Romance37
Thallus and Cleodemus51
The Epic Poets54
Jewish Historiography in the First Century C.E.60
2.Religion and Politics: The Ptolemaic Era64
The History of the Jews in Ptolemaic Egypt64
Onias and Leontopolis69
The Background of Onias73
The Tale of the Tobiads74
2 Maccabees and the Oniads77
2 Maccabees and the Diaspora78
The Third Sibyl83
The Content of Sibylline Oracle 387
The Seventh King88
The Analogy with the Persian Period91
The King from the Sun92
Jerusalem and the Gentile Kings95
A Ptolemaic Messiah95
The Provenance of Sibylline Oracle 396
The Letter of Aristeas97
Joseph and Aseneth103
Greek Esther110
3.Religion and Politics: The Roman Period113
The Status of the Jews in Roman Egypt113
The Third Book of Maccabees122
Philo's Politics131
The Events of 66-73 C.E.138
The Background of the Great Revolt140
The Fifth Sibyl143
The Later Sibyllines150
Part 2Identity Through Ethics and Piety
4.The Common Ethic155
Judaism according to Hecataeus155
The Basis for a Common Ethic157
The Sibylline Oracles160
The Third Sibyl160
Sibylline Oracle 5165
Sibylline Oracle 4166
The Sibylline Fragments167
The Testaments of the Twelve Patriarchs174
The Testaments and the Covenant Form177
The Content of the Exhortations179
Homiletic Material in the Testaments179
The Ethic of the Testaments183
The Role of the Synagogue184
5.Philosophical Judaism186
Poetic Forgeries190
The Wisdom of Solomon195
Fourth Maccabees202
6.The Mysteries of God210
Mystic Judaism210
A Mystic Ritual?211
Mystic Philosophy214
Heavenly Revelations219
The Pseudo-Orphic Fragments219
Ezekiel the Tragedian224
Joseph and Aseneth230
Ritual Elements in Joseph and Aseneth?232
Group Membership234
The Episode of the Honeycomb235
The Representative Roles of Joseph and Aseneth236
A Corpus Permixtum237
Lack of Sectarian Character238
The Prayer of Joseph239
The Testament of Job240
The Struggle with Satan242
The Confrontation with the Friends243
The Role of the Women244
The Religion of the Testament of Job245
The Books of Adam and Eve246
The Testament of Abraham248
The Perspective on Death250
The View of Judaism251
2 Enoch252
The Hortatory Message253
3 Baruch255
The Attitude toward Jerusalem257
A System of Individual Rewards258
7.Jews and Gentiles261
A Jewish Mission?262
The "God-fearers"264
The Function of the Literature270
Modern Authors307
Ancient Literature315

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