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This volume draws attention to ancient religious texts, especially the so-called "non-canonical" texts, by focusing on how they were used or how they functioned in Early Judaism and Early Christianity. The contributors have chosen one or more Jewish or Christian apocryphal or pseudepigraphical texts, with the aim of describing their ancient functions in their emerging social settings. These show the fluidity of the notion of scripture in the early centuries of the Church and in the Judaism of late antiquity, but they also show the value of examining the ancient religious texts that were not included in the Jewish or Christian biblical canons. These chapters show that there is much that can be learned from examining and comparing these texts with canonical literature and evaluating them in their social context. No ancient text was created in a vacuum, and the non-canonical writings aid in our interpretation not only of many canonical writings, but also shed considerable light on the context of both early Judaism and early Christianity.
About the Author
Lee M. McDonald is President Emeritus and Professor of New Testament Studies Emeritus of Acadia Divinity School, Nova Scotia and Adjunct Professor of New Testament at Fuller Theological Seminary. He serves as Scholar in Residence for the American Baptist Churches of Los Angeles and the American Baptist Congregations of the Southwest and Hawaii.
James H. Charlesworth is George L. Collord Professor of New Testament Language and Literature at Princeton Theological Seminary and director of the seminary's Dead Sea Scrolls Project. He is the author of The Beloved Disciple and co-editor of the Trinity Press Faith and Scholarship Colloquies (FSC) Series.
Table of Contents
Introduction: "Non-canonical" Religious Texts in Early Judaism and Early Christianity Lee M. McDonald James H. Charlesworth 1
1 Early Judaism and Modern Culture: Reflections on the Theological Relevance of Early Jewish Literature Gerbern S. Oegema 9
2 Christians in Egypt: A Preliminary Survey of Christian Literature Found in Oxyrhynchus Craig A. Evans 26
3 The Reception of the Pseudepigrapha in Syriac Traditions: The Case of 2 Baruch Liv Ingeborg Lied 52
4 The Coptic, Arabic, and Ethiopic Versions of the Testament of Abraham and the Emergence of the Testaments of Isaac and Jacob K. Martin Heide 61
5 The Son of David in Psalms of Solomon 17 Danny Zacharias 73
6 The Enochic Library of the Author of the Epistle of Barnabas Eric Rowe 88
7 Ruminating on the Canonical Process in Light of a Bodmer Papyrus Anthology (P72) James H. Charlesworth 103
8 The Hebrew Gospel in Early Christianity James R. Edwards 116
9 Trapped in a Forgerer's Rhetoric: 3 Corinthians, Pseudepigraphy, and the Legacy of Ancient Polemics Caleb Webster 153
10 The Place of the Shepherd of Hermas in the Canon Debate David Nielsen 162
11 The Protevangelium of James and the Composition of the Bodmer Miscellaneous Codex: Chronology, Theology, and Liturgy George T. Zervos 177
12 The Child Mary in the Protevangelium of James Mary F. Foskett 195
13 Purity, Piety, and the Purposes of the Protevangelium of James Lily Vuong 205
14 Thecla Desexualized: The Saint Justina Legend and the Reception of the Christian Apocrypha in Late Antiquity Brian Sowers 222
Selected Bibliography Arthur C. Boulet 235
Index of References 239
Index of Subjects 245