Roger T. Beckwith
Warden, Latimer House, Oxford
The Psalms are full of references to music, Jerusalem and the sanctuary. Chronicles, Ezra and Nehemiah say they were being performed there by the Levites, and the titles (which have a marked community of ideas and language with those books, though without dependence) endorse this. The division into five books pre-dates the LXX version, but there are many indications, in the text and titles, of a still earlier division into three. The meaning of the musical directions and other technical terms in the titles had been forgotten, in Semitic circles as well as Hellenistic, before the LXX version was made. Since, after the Exile, the Psalms were being performed continuously, this suggests that the titles are even pre-exilic. The final component of the titles has its own history. The eccentric Psalms MSS from Qumran are probably liturgical adaptations.
PAPYRUS MAGDALEN GREEK 17 (GREGORY-ALAND P64): A REAPPRAISAL
Carsten Peter Thiede
Director, Institut fur Wissenschaftstheoretische Grundlagenforschung, Paderborn
More than forty years after C.H. Roberts' first edition of P64, this new edition provides the first complete reconstruction of all six sides of the three fragments kept at Magdalen College, Oxford. It corrects a number of errors, adds an improved reading of several verses, in particular of Matthew 26:22, which contribute to a better understanding of early Christian scribal habits; it furthermore discusses the question of nomina sacra for which P64 provides the three earliest known examples, and it reopens the question of the dating. With the first-century date suggested as a result of a comparative analysis using newly available manuscripts, P64 and, along with it, P67 are the earliest known codex fragments of the New Testament.
EXPLORING THE COMMON IDENTIFICATION OF THREE NEW TESTAMENT MANUSCRIPTS: P4, P64 AND P67
Philip W. Comfort
Visiting Professor in New Testament, Wheaton College, Illinois
This article explores the common identity of three very early Gospel manuscripts. Some scholars have believed that P4, P64 and P67 all came from the same codex; others have doubted. The newly proposed dating of P64 to the late first century makes this exploration all the more vital. This article examines the provenance and paleography of all three papyri in an attempt to demonstrate a common scribe. Then the article presents an argument for dating P4 to the second century.
THE BOOK OF JOB AND THE FEAR OF GOD
Lecturer in Old Testament, Ridley College, Melbourne
This article studies the function of the 'fear of God' idea in the book of Job. It is argued that, despite the difference in terminology, the 'fear of God' is equivalent to the 'fear of the LORD' concept of Proverbs. The location of the motif in the final form of the book of Job suggests that the 'fear of God' is not being proposed as the answer to Job's dilemma. Rather, Job is one who maintains his 'fear of God' throughout the book, yet is left with his questions and suffering. The 'fear of God' is seen as the solution by Job's friends, the wisdom interlude of chapter 28, and by Elihu, yet all this is overridden by the Yahweh speeches and epilogue, where the 'fear of God' is not mentioned. While the 'fear of God' is central to the wisdom stream, the book of Job establishes that it is not the answer to every problem in life.
THE WORD, THE WORDS AND THE WITNESS: PROCLAMATION AS DIVINE AND HUMAN REALITY IN THE THEOLOGY OF KARL BARTH
Lecturer in Systematic Theology, University of Aberdeen
Karl Barth's entire theology is predicated upon the supposition that God has spoken to human beings. His exposition of the doctrine of the Word of God is informed both by trinitarian and incarnational analogies and insights. In each of the three forms of God's Word (Jesus of Nazareth, scripture, and Christian preaching) there is a paradox and scandal of identity between the divine and the human to be grasped. The relationships between these three, and the peculiar duality in unity which each manifests, are explored in this essay in relation to Barth's characteristic understanding of revelation as event.
WHY BARZILLAI OF GILEAD (1 KINGS 2:7)?: NARRATIVE ART AND THE HERMENEUTICS OF SUSPICION IN 1 KINGS 1-2
Iain W. Provan
Lecturer in Old Testament, University of Edinburgh
Even if one remains uneasy about the precise direction in which much recent scholarship on biblical narrative has been moving, it is the case that much can be learned from the kind of approaches which have been developed. This paper argues, for example, that the author of 1 Kings 1-2 invites the reader to employ a 'hermeneutic of suspicion' in relation to his story by the artful way in which he tells it; and that the employment of such a hermeneutic enables a deeper grasp of what the story is about than would otherwise be possible.
THE WAYYIQTOL AS 'PLUPERFECT': WHEN AND WHY
C. John Collins
Associate Professor in Old Testament, Covenant Theological Seminary, St. Louis
This article examines the possibility that the Hebrew wayyiqtol verb form itself, without a previous perfect, may denote what in Western languages would be expressed by a pluperfect tense, and attempts to articulate how we might discern it in a given passage, and the communicative effect of such a usage. The article concludes that there is an unmarked pluperfect usage of the wayyiqtol verb form; and that it may be detected when one of three conditions is met. Application of these results demonstrates that this usage is not present in 1 Samuel 14:24, while it is present in Genesis 2:19.
POST-MORTEM EVANGELISM: A RESPONSE TO R.R. COOK
Wolfson College, Oxford
Robert Cook has recently presented an examination of the notion of post-mortem evangelism as found in the writings of Clark Pinnock, an examination which declared Pinnock's position to be internally consistent. This article questions both Pinnock's position and Cook's analysis, on the grounds that it appears impossible to make sense of what it means for a sinner to choose hell. It is also suggested that this is part of a larger failure on the part of theodicy to understand the radical nature of evil.
THE ACHAEAN FEDERAL IMPERIAL CULT I: PSEUDO-JULIAN, LETTERS
Antony J.S. Spawforth
Senior Lecturer in Classics, Newcastle-upon-Tyne University
This paper explores the evolution of emperor-worship at Corinth in the first century A.D. Specifically, it argues that a Greek 'letter' in the correspondence on the emperor Julian should be redated to c. A.D. 80-120 and identified as a petition from the city of Argos to the Roman governor of Achaia, in which the Argives sought exemption from payments towards the cost of celebrations of the imperial cult at the Roman colony of Corinth. Since these celebrations involved many of the province's cities, the paper goes on to argue that they can be identified with the collective cult-its place of celebration previously uncertain-known from inscriptions to have been founded by the member-cities of the Achaean league in the mid-first century A.D.
THE ACHAEAN FEDERAL IMPERIAL CULT II: THE CORINTHIAN CHURCH
Bruce W. Winter
Warden, Tyndale House, Cambridge
The petition from Argos discussed in the previous essay is a 'new' document for New Testament scholars which throws light on first-century issues in Roman Corinth. This paper seeks to examine the Argive evidence in order to see what information it might yield to help in our understanding of the early Christian community. In particular it will explore the problem of the imperial cult and 1 Corinthians 8 and comment briefly on Roman Corinth's cultural and legal mores.
HESED AS OBLIGATION: A RE-EXAMINATION
While there is little dispute that hesed is a significant term, opinion is divided over its meaning. Glueck defines hesed in terms of loyalty and mutual obligation within the context of relationships, especially relationships involving a covenant. More recent studies, however, have minimised this aspect, linking hesed, instead, with ideas of benevolence and kindness. This article looks at the use of hesed in the OT in the setting of human relationships and the relationship between God and his people, and considers, too, the Hebrew terms with which hesed is most closely associated. It concludes in favour of the more traditional interpretation, and considers the significance of this understanding for the covenant people of God.