"Let books be your dining table, / And you shall be full of delights. / Let them be your
And you shall sleep restful nights" (St. Ephraim the Syrian).

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Pauline Perspectives

Earlier I noted the number of important "Companions" published by Wiley-Blackwell of interest to Eastern Christians. Another has recently been published and has three chapters--at least--of particular interest to Eastern Christians:

Stephen Westerholm, ed., The Blackwell Companion to Paul (Blackwell Companions to Religion) (Wiley-Blackwell, 2011), 632pp. 

The Blackwell Companion to Paul, the publisher says,

presents a distinctive dual focus approach that encompasses both the historical Paul and the history of Paul's influence. In doing so, expert contributors successfully address the interests of students of early Christianity and those of Christian theology. 
  • Offers a complete overview of the life, writings and legacy of one of the key figures of Christianity
  • The essays compass the major themes of Paul's life and work, as well as his impact through the centuries on theology, Church teaching, social beliefs, art, literature, and contemporary intellectual thought 
  • Edited by one of the leading figures in the field of Pauline Studies. The contributors include a range of world-renowned academics
Chapters of especial interest to Eastern Christians include:
  • 20 Origen (Peter Widdicombe)
  • 21 Chrysostom (Christopher A. Hall)
  • 30 Orthodox Readings of Paul (Theodore G. Stylianopoulos).

I would also note chapter 33, "Literature" (David Lyle Jeffrey). Jeffrey is one of the most distinguished scholars in the world today studying the relationship between the Bible (especially the King James version) and Western culture in general, and Western literature in particular. It was a great joy of mine, many years ago now, to have had Jeffrey as a professor when he was still at the University of Ottawa prior to his appointment at Baylor.  I heard him in the spring on NPR discussing the 400th anniversary of the KJV.

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