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The Jewish Annotated New Testament

The Jewish Annotated New Testament Edited by Amy-Jill Levine and Marc Z. Brettler

This is awesome!

Regulars here may remember when I tried to, week by week, give background to the Sunday, three-year-lectionary, readings. This volume goes a long way to providing that kind of information. It helps me, and other Christians, to get a fresh perspective on texts that we may, through over-familiarity, sometimes blunt.

In this volume, fifty specialist Jewish scholars introduce, annotate, and provide explanatory inserts book by book through the Christian New Testament (using the scholarly NRSV text). There are also lots of essays, on topics as diverse as Divine Beings, Jesus in Jewish thought, Parables and Midrash, Mysticism, Jewish Family Life, Messianic Movements, Dead Sea Scrolls, and so on. Then there are tables, a glossary, and an index.

The volume gathers together emerging consensus scholarship. As well as being helpful for refreshing our reading, this volume is a wonderful starting point and resource for interfaith dialogue. The volume not only encourages such dialogue, but is also obviously a fruit of it – this area would not have had such wealth of scholars until relatively recently.

Amy-Jill Levine is University Professor of New Testament and Jewish Studies, E. Rhodes and Leona B. Carpenter Professor of New Testament Studies, and Professor of Jewish Studies at the Divinity School, College of Arts and Science, Graduate Department of Religion, and Program in Jewish Studies at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, TN. Marc Z. Brettler is Dora Golding Professor of Biblical Studies at Brandeis University.

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2 thoughts on “The Jewish Annotated New Testament”

  1. Having now owned and worked with this “New Testament” for some months I can only agree that it is a significant gift to those who, one way or another, acknowledge the significance of Jesus. I first wrote Christian faith and then reflected is there any such thing as THE christian faith. Last week I wrote in my weekly blog in our parish pew sheet (there’s history in a title) the following
    St Vincent of Lerins famously wrote in the 4th century A.D. that the true Christian is known through his commitment “to that which is believed everywhere, always and by all”, that belief has”universality, antiquity and consent”. This is a famous quote used by many of a traditional, conservative bent. But does it in any way truly represent what has happened in the history of Christian musing, thinking and belief. Are we so sure of our own position that those of some variation of belief have been “metamorphosed from a sheep into a wolf” (Vincent again).

    1. Thanks, Brian. I’m not sure about “traditional” and “conservative”; it seems to me that the core of what is believed everywhere and by all is smaller than some might contend; it also may be enough. Mine is very much a hard-core-soft-edges approach. Blessings.

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