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Early Judaism and Modern Culture
Literature and Theology
PAPERBACK; Published: 3/9/2011
ISBN: 978-0-8028-6444-4
256 Pages
Trim Size, in inches: 6x9

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Gerbern Oegema has long been drawn to the noncanonical literature of early Judaism -- literature written between 300 b.c.e. and 200 c.e. These works, many of which have been lost, forgotten, and rediscovered, are now being studied with ever-increasing enthusiasm by scholars and students alike.

Although much recent attention has been given to the literary and historical merits of the Apocrypha, Pseudepigrapha, and other deutero- and extracanonical writings, Early Judaism and Modern Culture shows that it is also important to study these literary works from a theological perspective. To that end, Oegema considers the reception of early Jewish writings throughout history and identifies their theological contributions to many issues of perennial importance: ethics, politics, gender relations, interreligious dialogue, and more. Oegema demonstrates decisively that these books -- more than merely objects of academic curiosity -- have real theological and cultural relevance for churches, synagogues, and society at large today.
REVIEWS
James H. Charlesworth
— Princeton Theological Seminary
"Through engaging words, Gerbern Oegema invites his readers to appreciate the vibrant and advanced world of the early Jews and how they have left us insights and visions for modern culture."
John J. Collins
— Yale Divinity School
"In an era when biblical theology is commonly approached from a narrow canonical perspective, Oegema's demonstration of the theological and historical significance of the noncanonical writings of ancient Judaism is refreshing and important."
Journal of Ancient Judaism
"This volume contains a wealth of information on early Judaism, its writings and ideas, and relations with and influence on early Christianity and Greco-Roman culture. . . . This collection of essays will be of interest to all students of ancient or early Judaism and its writings, both canonical and non-canonical."
Journal for the Study of the New Testament
"Oegema provides some sensitive insights into how the theological contribution of the non-canonical writings of early Judaism may be relevant for modern times."
Journal of Theological Studies
"Oegema highlights some very important insights from the non-canonical writings for theology today. . . . The book raises many important questions and provides a useful overview of the ways in which the deutero-canonical books viewed a selection of theological and sociological issues. "

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