Volume 8 (2011-2012)
This volume is now available in print from Sheffield Phoenix Press
The Bodmer ‘Miscellaneous’ Codex and the Crosby-Schøyen Codex MS 193: A New Proposal'
Brice C. Jones
McGill University, Montreal, QC, Canada
This article examines the codex of P72 in an attempt to determine whether or not ‘miscellany’ is an appropriate designation on the basis of its contents. Some scholars have argued that the scribe of P72 brought together several texts that share a common theme, but there are indications that suggest this theory is unwarranted. This article proposes that the multi-text codex of P72 consists of a variety of texts that were brought together not because they share a single theme but because the compiler of the codex sought to establish a better reserve of biblical literature for private use, and that the term ‘composite’ is a more appropriate designation for the codex.
The Concept of Atonement in the Fourth Servant Song in the LXX
Jintae Kim
Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary
This article seeks to find the origin of the New Testament concept of atonement. The writer suggests the presence of an ancient tradition behind the Fourth Servant Song of the LXX. The LXX (Isa. 52.13–53.12) eschatologizes the Old Testament sacrifices by identifying the Servant with a messianic figure who would suffer and die vicariously for the sins of others. The same idea was implicit in the Hebrew text of Isaiah 53 and is now made explicit in the translator’s interpretive rendering of the Hebrew text. In this article, the writer examines primarily the Fourth Servant Song in the LXX and demonstrates its eschatological interpretation of the Old Testament sacrifices.
Dispute with Stoicism in the Parable of the Rich Man and Lazarus
Tim Brookins
Baylor University, Waco, TX
Setting aside questions of derivation, literary dependency, and textual integrity, this essay asks how a Greco-Roman comparative approach might enable present-day audiences to hear the parable of the Rich Man and Lazarus as it would have been heard by a philosophically- and rhetorically-educated first-century audience. It argues that the parable evokes the technical Stoic concepts of ‘good’ (ἀγαθόν) and ‘evil’ (κακόν), as well as each of the items in the usual summary of Stoic ‘indifferents’ (ἀδιάφορα) (life, pleasure, health, and wealth, and their opposites, death, pain, disease, and poverty), but that Luke deliberately upsets the Stoic understanding of these concepts. Accentuating this Stoic content is the fact that the parable uses a form of discourse that was, in the tradition preserved by Seneca, closely associated with the Stoics—that of ‘declamatory’ rhetoric.
An Early Commentary on the Pauline Corpus: The Capitulation of Codex Vaticanus
Greg Goswell
Presbyterian Theological College, Melbourne, Australia
An examination of the system of chapters in Codex Vaticanus (B 03) of the early fourth century reveals that the divisions present in the Pauline epistles represent an evaluation of what are the sense-units of the biblical passages. This study explores the hermeneutical significance of the ancient chapters demarcated in the Pauline Epistles of this codex. It demonstrates that the study of divisions in ancient texts has the potential of generating new exegetical insights (or recovering old ones long forgotten) and of helping us to scrutinize and re-evaluate contemporary exegetical and homiletical practice.
The Priestly Portrait Of Jesus In The Gospel Of John In The Light Of 1QS, 1QSa And 1QSb
Wally V. Cirafesi
McMaster Divinity College, Hamilton, ON, Canada
This article suggests that the priestly features of John’s Christology merit further exploration, and highlights several priestly elements of the Fourth Gospel’s presentation of Jesus based on three Qumran texts: 1QS, 1QSa and 1QSb. It argues that there were at least three key characteristics of the Zadokite priesthood at Qumran that find correspondences with the activities of Jesus in John’s Gospel. These characteristics are: (1) authority in legal scenarios; (2) leadership at the communal meal; and (3) the formation of a spiritualized temple. It concludes that, while there may not necessarily be a relation of causality, the Qumran texts and John’s Gospel share a similar theological perspective regarding the priesthood in Qumran and Jesus Christ in John.
Are Dionysos and Oedipus Name Variations for Satan and Antichrist?
E. K. McFall
Bilkent University, Ankara, Turkey
The striking similarities between Dionysos and Satan, along with evident points of intersection and contention between Dionysos and both YHWH and Christ, are such that ‘no other deity from any other culture is as closely associated with both YHWH and Christ—and yet diametrically opposed to them—as Dionysos’. Connecting this view to close readings of the Attic tragedians that allow for the inference that Dionysos is Oedipus’s father-coupled to an understanding of Oedipus as a kind of ‘anti-Moses’, and to commentaries that link Oedipus to Judas and Nero, both types of Antichrists—raises the question of the tradition of Antichrist in the context of Dionysos as Satan and Oedipus as Antichrist.
Jesus as the Holy One of God: The Healing of the ZaVaH in Mark 5.24b-34
Horace Jeffery Hodges
Ewha Womans University, Seoul, South Korea
John C. Poirier
Kingswell Theological Seminary, Middletown, OH, USA
The story of Jesus healing a woman of a chronic flow of blood (Mark 5.24b-34) speaks, on the surface, of the woman’s faith. It also reveals several things about the dynamics of ritual impurity and healing virtue, most notably about how those dynamics interact with the figure of Jesus as the “holy one” of God. This article revisits the question of what the healing signifies (esp. for the woman), and of how the narrative informs the larger Markan context. It also examines the figure of the “holy one” in Mark, and his effect upon the story’s ritual logic.
Thallus and The Darkness at Christ’s Death
Richard Carrier
Berkeley, CA, USA
It is commonly claimed that a chronologer named Thallus, writing shortly after 52 CE, mentioned the crucifixion of Jesus and the noontime darkness surrounding it (which reportedly eclipsed the whole world for three hours), and attempted to explain it as an ordinary solar eclipse. But this is not a credible interpretation of the evidence. A stronger case can be made that we actually have a direct quotation of what Thallus said, and it does not mention Jesus. Rather, Thallus only wrote that in the year 32 “the sun was eclipsed, Bithynia was struck by an earthquake, and in the city of Nicaea many buildings fell.”
Early Apocryphal Non-Gospel Literature and the New Testament Text
Stanley E. Porter
McMaster Divinity College, Hamilton, ON, Canada
This paper examines the non-Gospel apocryphal documents originating before the rise of the major codexes in the fourth century. When this literature is examined, there are very few parallels to passages in the New Testament. Where there is evidence of parallel material, the apocryphal texts appear to use the text of the Greek New Testament directly or with contextual adaptations, indicating that the text of the Greek New Testament was relatively well established by the second and third centuries.
Naked Bodies and Heavenly Clothing: ΓΥΜΝΟΣ in 2 Corinthians 5.3
Kevin Daugherty
Briercrest College and Seminary, Caronport, SK, Canada
Paul’s statement that believers will not be found ‘naked’ in 2 Cor. 5.3 has often been interpreted in terms of a period of disembodied existence after death. Instead, the background of the image in the Hebrew Bible, its meaning in the context of 2 Corinthians, and its relation to the broader teachings of Paul, all support the interpretation of ‘naked’ as a description of the present condition of the body, especially as it culminates in death. Nakedness indicates continued solidarity with the Adamic race and the present age, and Paul was encouraged that he would not appear before Christ at the judgment in this state.