Sunday, May 12, 2013

The New New New Perspective on Paul?

Thanks to Prodigal Kiwi we are alerted to a significance new publication on 1 November 2013, the fourth part in N.T. Wright's magnum opus of a series about Christian Origins and the Question of God. This two volume extension of the series is entitled, Paul and the Faithfulness of God.

N. T. (= Bishop Tom) Wright is at the forefront of reviewing and revising our understanding of Paul (i.e. perspective on Paul), he and others claiming that the dominant understanding since the days of Martin Luther is not actually faithful to Paul's writings. Hence the New Perspective and, perhaps tongue in cheek, variations on that as the New New Perspective. My title wonders if Wright's final prognostications will deserve being the New New New Perspective.

Certainly the phrase 'the faithfulness of God' in the title suggests a certain creativity at work as debates re the Old v New Perspective often pit 'faith in Christ' versus 'the faithfulness of Christ'. So here, the angle brought by the 'faithfulness of God' looks inviting for some summer reading on a beach near you.

That last thought is obviously a Down Under perspective not share by northern hemisphere readers :)

ADDENDUM: also in New Testament studies news this week, Geza Vermes has died. An illuminating obituary is here. It is illuminating for me, in at least one way, in respect of the way myth may grow. In my mind, picking up bits and pieces of information, Vermes was a Jew who developed an unusual and sympathetic interest in the Jesus of Christianity and on that subject wrote several important works. Now I learn that Vermes' life story was much more complicated. He was a Jew but one brought up as a Roman Catholic, who was ordained a priest and for many years lived the life of a monastic scholar. Later he renounced both priesthood (and married another man's wife) and Christian belief.


Andrew Reid said...

If you fancy a trip across the ditch, Peter, NT Wright will be in Melbourne in July.

Peter Carrell said...

Excellent, however, I am tripping across the ditch at another point (Perthwards) that month!

Andrew Reid said...

If you're going to this event in Perth, NT Wright is attending as well, although the program doesn't mention where.