Foreword by Birger GerhardssonTraditions of the Rabbis from the Era of the New Testament (TRENT)
is a major new six-volume work of scholarship that provides an exhaustive collection of early rabbinic traditions and commentary on their relevance to the New Testament.
Focusing on 63 rabbinic traditions central to ancient Jewish life, David Instone-Brewer's massive study provides significant insights into Jewish thought and practice prior to the destruction of the Second Temple in 70 C.E.
For each rabbinic tradition considered, the supporting Hebrew source text is provided side by side with an English translation. Instone-Brewer also presents evidence that exists for accurately dating these rabbinic sources -- a critical task recently advanced by modern dating techniques. He goes on to thoroughly discuss the meaning and importance of each rabbinic tradition for Second Temple Judaism, also analyzing any echoes or direct appearances of the tradition in the New Testament writings.
In this first TRENT
volume, Instone-Brewer examines texts relating to prayer and agriculture. The first section includes texts dealing with when and how to recite the Shema, the Eighteen Benedictions, and other blessings and prayers. The second section contains texts on a wide variety of considerations related to agriculture, such as the "leftovers" to which the poor were entitled, tithing, "mixed" foods and other products, Sabbath Year activities, offerings, and so on.
Sure to be a standard reference work for students of both Judaism and Christianity, TRENT
provides for the first time a ready resource on rabbinic traditions originating in the New Testament era.
Features of TRENT
- Discusses 63 tractates that illuminate ancient Jewish life
- Follows the traditional order of subject divisions in the Mishnah
- Presents Hebrew/Aramaic texts in parallel with a literal English translation and notes on variants
- Provides dating evidence along with degree of certainty
- Offers commentary on the meaning and significance of rabbinic traditions in Second Temple Judaism
- Highlights the presence of rabbinic traditions in the New Testament writings
- Includes a full glossary of rabbinic terminology
"This ambitious project will be welcomed warmly by all who are interested in first-century Judaism, for it meets a long-felt need. How do we isolate and interpret rabbinic writings that come from the first century C.E.? David Instone-Brewer faces this complex question squarely. His comments are scholarly and rigorous yet accessible to a wide range of readers."
"A brave and fruitful initiative, this massive effort to recover a Judaic context for interpreting the Gospels builds on a generation of work and marks a new and promising development."
"This work gives valuable help toward understanding the New Testament in its Jewish setting. It presents older rabbinic texts of importance for New Testament interpretation, in Hebrew as well as English, following the order of the Mishnah. Instone-Brewer's commentaries are notably concise and helpful."