Item description for The Faith of Jesus Christ: The Narrative Substructure of Galatians 3:1-4:11 (The Biblical Resource Series) by Richard B. Hays & Luke Timothy Johnson...
Overview In this important study Hays argues against the mainstream that any attempt to account for the nature and method of Paul's theological language must first reckon with the centrality of narrative elements in his thought. Through an in-depth investigation of Galatians 3:1-4:11, Hays shows that the framework of Paul's thought is neither a system of doctrines nor his personal religious experience but the "sacred story" of Jesus Christ.
Publishers Description Widely praised as a major contribution to Pauline studies, Richard B. Hays's Faith of Jesus Christ now features, in this expanded second edition, a foreword by Luke Timothy Johnson, a new introduction by Hays, and a substantial dialogue with James D. G. Dunn. In this important study Hays argues against the mainstream that any attempt to account for the nature and method of Paul's theological language must first reckon with the centrality of narrative elements in his thought. Through an in-depth investigation of Galatians 3:1-4:11, Hays shows that the framework of Paul's thought is neither a system of doctrines nor his personal religious experience but the "sacred story" of Jesus Christ. Above all, Paul's thought is guided by his concern to draw out the implications of the gospel story, particularly how the "faith of Jesus Christ" reflects the mission of the church.
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Studio: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company
Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 9.26" Width: 6.26" Height: 0.94" Weight: 1.11 lbs.
Release Date Dec 3, 2005
Publisher Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company
Series Biblical Resource
ISBN 0802849571 ISBN13 9780802849571
Availability 0 units.
More About Richard B. Hays & Luke Timothy Johnson
Richard B. Hays, George Washington Ivey Professor of New Testament at Duke Divinity School, is internationally recognized for his work on the letters of Paul and on New Testament ethics. His scholarship has bridged the disciplines of biblical criticism and literary studies, exploring the innovative ways in which early Christian writers interpreted Israel s Scripture. His works include "Echoes of Scripture in the Letters of Paul" (Yale University Press, 1989), "The Conversion of the Imagination: Paul as Interpreter of Israel s Scripture" (Eerdmans, 2005), and "Reading Backwards: Figural Christology and the Fourfold Gospel Witness" (Baylor University Press, 2014)."
Reviews - What do customers think about The Faith of Jesus Christ: The Narrative Substructure of Galatians 3:1-4:11 (The Biblical Resource Series)?
Brilliant! A Possible Solution to a Troubling Dilemma Nov 12, 2005
Richard B. Hays argues that the passage in Galatians (2:16) translated into English as, "... a [human being] is not justified by the works of the law but through faith in Jesus Christ ..." can be, and should be, translated differently.
Hays argues that the passage should be translated as it is literally given in the original koine Greek: "... a [human being] is not justified by the works of the law but through [the] faith OF Jesus Christ ..."
Of course, such a translation all but destroys the popular Protestant doctrine of "justification by faith only." The emphasis of most evangelicals is that it is OUR faith that saves us and that no "work" we perform can, in any way, contribute to our salvation.
Reasoning from this conclusion most of Protestantism has jettisoned water baptism as having any role to play in a person's salvation whatsoever. The fellowship through which I came to the Lord as a teenager, however, teaches that a person must be baptized in water to be saved. This has always confused me.
For years I have listened to the wrangling and agreed (secretly) that baptism could be considered a "work" if understood as a human work. On the other hand, if a human being is saved by "faith only" then I have never been able to understand why water baptism has played such a large role in Christian conversion through the centuries. What is the purpose of water baptism if a human being is saved by faith only?
Hays, if he is correct, solves the dilemma. His argument helps me see why water baptism has been the central initiation rite within Christianity from its inception.
If we are going to be consistent in our translation of the verse then the faith Paul is describing is as much "of Christ" as the works Paul is describing are "of the law." The grammatical construction of the two phrases is identical.
Paul uses the identical construction in Romans 3:21-22 to say, "But now apart from the law a righteousness of God hath been manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets; even the righteousness of God through [the] faith OF Jesus Christ unto all them that believe...."
Again, the righteousness Paul is discussing is "of God" (genitive). That righteousness of God has been made available to human beings through the obedient faith OF Jesus Christ (also genitive)! It is the righteousness of God that is transferred into us as "believing ones."
Water baptism, then, makes a whole lot more sense. Three chapters later, in Romans 6:3-4 (as well as in other places in the New Testament) Paul says that at the point of our baptism - a passive act on our part; one in which God is the one doing the work - God transfers us INTO CHRIST!
Human redemption has been secured by the perfect, obedient faith of the Son of God, Jesus Christ. My faith does not produce my salvation; my faith leads me to submit to God's commandment and, at my baptism, God places me into Christ, where the redemptive work He accomplished is passively imputed to me as I am passively transferred into Him! All by the power and work of God!
So, neither is faith a human work nor is baptism a human work - both are my appropriate response to the completed work of God. And, because of the perfect faith of Jesus Christ, God can, and does at my baptism, transfer me into Him where the righteousness of God becomes mine!
Richard B. Hays, you're a genius. Thank you!
Challege to one's theology, challenge to one's life Nov 8, 2005
Hays avers his work doesn't supplant other approaches to understanding but that it is "complementary." Still he seems to have broken new ground and threatens, or rather enables, a fresh new understanding of Christ's atoning work and our response to it. While best known for giving us the translation "the faith OF Jesus" Hays himself is more enamored of the implied story behind Galatians (with strong apologetic implications) and Romans, too. He exposes the "myth of Paul the isolated religious genius who shared little or nothing with his Jewish-Christian contemporaries" but employed the given story of Jesus in his mainstream theology. Hays' work will nevertheless be difficult for the public in that it is a thesis simply made into a book. And it would have helped if the German, French, and Latin quotes (sometimes extensive) had been translated in this reprint of a landmark work.
Saved by faith in Christ or of Christ Jun 19, 2004
This is a highly technical work and you must have some knowledge of New Testament Greek to maximize its benefit. This is a work that all pastors, and laymen who work with the Greek text should interact. Hays makes a very cogent argument for certain passages normally translated "faith in Christ" to be the "faith or faithfullness of Christ" that is to say the "Subjective Gentive instead of the traditional "Objective Genitive." This position is not new and does have growing support by many serious Biblical language scholars. Agree or disagree with the author's conclusion, this is the type of exegetical issues that every Bible exeget should at least be conversant. The text will give you important data and exegetical information for drawing an infomred conclusion. The text is easy to follow. This second addition has a new introduction and two appedixes, one by Dr. James Dunn (Romans in Word Bible Commentary) who argues against Hays' thesis, followed by a response by Hays. These three additions are worth the price of the book. If Hays is correct, nothing of the cardinal doctrines of Christianity change, but how we might approach the teaching of Romans and Galatians will. For example, there would be a greater emphasis on preaching both the active and passive obedience of Christ, the federal headship of Christ and a defense against turning faith into a justifying work like Jacob Arminius tried to do.
Worth several readings Apr 20, 2003
Richard Hays argues that Paul is telling or appealing to a story in his argument with the Galatians--the story of the faithfulness of Jesus Christ. There are many things of interest and value in this work. I will simply mention the provacative thesis that, many times, when our English Bibles translate "faith in Jesus Christ," Hays argues that Paul is actually referring to "the faith of Jesus Christ." Christ's own trust in God and his faithful obedience to the point of death on the cross is the crux of our salvation from the curse.
I still haven't decided if I'm sure Hays is right. As I have noted, the book is worth several readings. But for those looking for something meaty in New Testament theology, hermeneutics and/or literary theory, I think this should be at the top of your list.