Item description for Judgment & Justification In Early Judaism And The Apostle Paul by Chris Vanlandingham...
Overview The Apostle Paul's letters cannot be understood apart from the greater context of the Greco-Roman world, and in particular, the religious environment of early Judaism. Thus, a discussion of grace and reward in Judaism is essential in order to comprehend the context from which Paul's thinking emerges. Examining the election of Israel, the criteria for eternal life, the letters of Paul, and how justification by faith may be reconciled with judgment according to deeds, VanLandingham addresses the relationship between divine grace and human reward as these two concepts relate to an individual's eternal destiny.
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Studio: Hendrickson Publishers
Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 9.3" Width: 6.36" Height: 1.18" Weight: 1.73 lbs.
Release Date Nov 30, 2006
Publisher HENDRICKSON PUBLISHER #40
ISBN 1565633989 ISBN13 9781565633988
Availability 0 units.
More About Chris Vanlandingham
Chris VanLandingham earned his PhD in Judaism and Christianity in the Greco-Roman World from the University of Iowa under the supervision of Dr. George Nickelsburg. He has served as assistant professor of ancient history at Oral Roberts University and as an adjunct professor of ancient history at St. Gregory's University, both in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
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A thorough discussion Dec 22, 2006
VanLandingham asks us to put aside our confessional spectacles and to take seriously the plain meaning of St Paul's teaching about the final judgment. When we do so, he argues, we will discover that Paul believed, just as his Jewish contemporaries believed, that "an individual's behavior during his or her lifetime provides the criterion for this judgment: good behavior is rewarded with eternal life, bad behavior with damnation." Paul may have differed with his fellow Jews on precisely which deeds where proscribed, permitted, or required; but he remained thoroughly Jewish in his conviction that the final judgment was based on deeds: "For it is not the hearers of the law who are righteous before God, but the doers of the law who will be justified" (Rom 2:13). VanLandingham therefore denies that the justification that occurs at the beginning of Christian existence is properly understood as a proleptic experience of the final judgment--God's eschatological judgment let loose in history, as one of my professors liked to put it. Paul, VanLandingham insists, consistently distinguishes between the two justifications.
I do not think I am exaggerating when I say that if VanLandingham's exegesis of the Apostle Paul stands up against critical scrutiny, it will initiate a revolution in Pauline studies. Given my lack of competence in Greek and New Testament studies, I am unable to offer any judgment on the matters addressed; but I am impressed by VanLandingham's thoroughness. Clearly he knows well the Scriptures and the intertestamental literature, as well as the secondary scholarship.
What are the consequences for the various Christian traditions should VanLandingham's exegesis prove sound? The Catholic and Orthodox traditions will have no problem absorbing his exegesis, since it basically confirms the consensual exegesis of Paul in the first millenium. Arminians, too, should be able to receive his exegesis, given their affirmation of salvation as synergistic process, yet it will still require some significant adjustments on their part. But VanLandingham's book represents a direct attack on the fundamental positions of the Lutheran and Reformed traditions. If he is right, the Lutheran and Reformed confessions are wrong, plain and simple. No longer will Lutherans be able to proclaim that the Scripture teaches that believers experience the eschatological acquittal in the present moment of faith. No longer will Reformeds be able to declare that the Scripture teaches the forensic imputation of Christ's righteousness to the believer.
This book is must reading for all students of the Apostle Paul