Monday, May 26, 2014

Review of Celebrating Paul

Celebrating Paul: Festschrift in Honor ofJerome Murphy-O'Connor, O.P., and Joseph A. Fitzmyer, S.J. Edited by Peter Spitaler. The Catholic Biblical Quarterly Monograph Series 48. Washington, D.C.: The Catholic Biblical Association of America, 2011. Pp. xxviii + 439. $25.00.

Celebrating Paul brings together a number of papers presented at Villanova University (and several additional essays) from the 2008 celebration of the Jubilee Year for the Apostle Paul, where Professors Murphy-O’Connor and Fitzmyer received honorary degrees. The honorees open the volume with studies addressing recent themes in Pauline studies generally and the “eucharist” in Corinth specifically. The rest of the work moves from broad-ranging studies on Paul to those focused on individual texts, with a major focus on Romans. Suggesting new trajectories in Pauline studies, W. S. Campbell in “‘I Rate All Things as Loss’” convincingly shows that Paul does not disparage his Jewish identity now that he is in Christ, and M. D. Nanos in “Paul and the Jewish Tradition” supports the contention that Paul remains within the bounds of Judaism. J. D. G. Dunn, in an essay likely requiring further scholarly engagement, argues that Paul was a “convert” from Judaism. This volume is a major contribution to NT studies and admirably reflects the influence of its honorees.

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