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Paul, a New Covenant Jew
Rethinking Pauline Theology
PAPERBACK; Published: 8/8/2019
ISBN: 978-0-8028-7376-7
Price: $ 35.00
304 Pages
Trim Size, in inches: 6 x 9
DESCRIPTION

After the landmark work of E. P. Sanders, the task of rightly accounting for Paul's relationship to Judaism has dominated the last forty years of Pauline scholarship. Pitre, Barber, and Kincaid argue that Paul is best viewed as a new covenant Jew, a designation that allows the apostle to be fully Jewish, yet in a manner centered on the person and work of Jesus the Messiah. This new covenant Judaism provides the key that unlocks the door to many of the difficult aspects of Pauline theology.

Paul, a New Covenant Jew is a rigorous, yet accessible overview of Pauline theology intended for ecumenical audiences. In particular, it aims to be the most useful and up to date text on Paul for Catholic Seminarians. The book engages the best recent scholarship on Paul from both Protestant and Catholic interpreters and serves as a launching point for ongoing Protestant-Catholic dialogue.
REVIEWS
Craig S. Keener
— Asbury Theological Seminary
“A helpful synthesis of themes in Pauline theology that reveals connections with one another and with Old Testament precedents. Many of these insights will resonate with Protestant as well as Catholic exegetes, and Protestants such as myself will find these authors gracious, worthy, and willing conversation partners.”
Scott Hahn
— Franciscan University of Steubenville
“The world of biblical studies and Pauline theology has been waiting a generation for this book. Covering a wide range of major issues, while engaging the wide spectrum of current perspectives, this is a major contribution to Pauline scholarship from three outstanding Catholic scholars—well worth the wait.”
Michael F. Bird
— Ridley College
“Pitre, Barber, and Kincaid persuasively argue that Paul was a new covenant Jew, an approach that proves to be a convincing way of describing the continuities between Paul and Judaism as well as the discontinuities that emerge out of Paul’s explicit christological recasting of the Jewish worldview. In a deliciously ecumenical approach, their vision of Paul brings together various threads of Jewish apocalypticism, Paul’s core conviction about Jesus, his account of the cross and justification, as well as new creation and communion. A genuinely fresh and insightful study of Paul that all serious students of the Bible will need to read.”
Matthew Levering
— Mundelein Seminary
“This synthetic work is a goldmine for scholars and students alike. Drawing upon the full range of contemporary Pauline scholarship, the authors carefully and generously describe the positions that differ from their own, thereby enabling beginning students to get their bearings in the debates. At the same time, scholars will be enthralled by the nuanced, rigorous, and serene case they make for overcoming well-known polarities in Pauline studies. They present a Paul who joyfully proclaims the new covenant in Christ Jesus, with implications for sonship, faith, baptism, grace, atonement, justification, Israel, the Eucharist, and much more. Not only for biblical scholars, but also for theologians, this spectacular scholarly study is a ‘must read.’”
Thomas D. Stegman, SJ
— Boston College School of Theology and Ministry
“As the scholarly guild continues to churn out monographs on St. Paul and his writings, it is rare to read one that proposes a truly fresh perspective. Brant Pitre, Michael Barber, and John Kincaid, however, have managed to write just such a book. Their proposal that Paul is best described as a new covenant Jew (because he himself does so!) allows them to capture both points of continuity with prior Jewish traditions as well as the novum of Paul’s gospel concerning the crucified-and-risen Jesus. Their Catholic ‘both-and’ approach, done with sound exegetical argumentation and wide consultation with the best of contemporary scholarship, enables them to set forth the coherence of Paul’s theological vision. I highly recommend this volume and will use it in my teaching.”
Chris Tilling
— St. Mellitus College
“While a lot is published on Paul, much of it is regurgitated and mundane, a mere reshuffling of the same worn furniture—and my eyes glaze. Others, however, try so hard to push the boat out and become polemical that my eyes roll. Not many manage to negotiate the waters between Scylla and Charybdis, but you are holding one that does! It’s a riveting read that presents answers to conundrums that are jarring in their economy, elegance, and power. Presented with a contagious verve and enthusiasm, these three brilliant young scholars weave cutting-edge and up-to-date scholarship into a highly readable tapestry. No stodgy, tired, overly pompous detail. No academic posturing. You are presented with fresh ideas, new proposals, and it’s all delivered at just the right pace. It’s a truly enjoyable read that deserves much critical meditation. So in short: the time you give to reading this book will be time very well spent. Even where questions remain, I know that I’ve learnt much from them; I’ve glimpsed things that were previously hidden from me. In this presentation of Paul as a ‘new covenant’ Jew, the Apostle might just burst out of his letters afresh. This is Paul the pop-up book!”

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