Qumran and Christian Origins
Imprint: Baylor University Press
Sales Date: 2022-06-01
503 Pages, 6.00 x 9.00 in
- Published: June 2022
Among the archaeological discoveries of the modern era, the Qumran site and the Dead Sea Scrolls are some of the most significant. These finds offer rich understanding of not only Judaism but also the Christian New Testament. Jörg Frey, through careful study and insight, illuminates these texts for the modern reader. Qumran and Christian Origins examines the hermeneutical framework of Qumran scholarship, patterns for relating the Scrolls to early Christianity, and the methodological challenges faced by comparisons between Qumran texts and New Testament writings. In a critical evaluation of earlier views, Frey provides a summary of the Scrolls' impact on our views of the historical Jesus, Paul and his language, and the Johannine literature. Frey then considers how the Scrolls inform our understanding of the origins and meaning of apocalypticism, ancient concepts of scriptural authority, and the growth of the biblical canon. The final chapters discuss the relationship between the Qumran texts and ancient testimonies about the Essenes and the connection between the Scrolls and the archaeological site of Qumran.
Drawing on several decades of Frey's research, this book demonstrates why students of the New Testament must study early Jewish texts, and in particular the Qumran corpus, and how these texts can be aptly applied. In the end, the hope is that we will have learned to see the New Testament more in terms of contemporary Judaism. Such insights are of profound theological importance, enabling us to pay attention to a feature of Christianity that was fundamental in its beginnings and is still significant today.
Introduction: The Dead Sea Scrolls and the New Testament
1 The Dead Sea Scrolls and New Testament Interpretation: History of Scholarship, Methodology of Comparison, and Two Test Cases
2 Changing Issues and Hermeneutical Horizons in Qumran Research
3 Qumran and the Study of the New Testament: Insights on the Historical Jesus and the Making of Christology
4 Paul’s View of the Spirit in the Light of Qumran
5 Flesh and Spirit: Palestinian Jewish Wisdom Traditions and Paul’s Anthropological Terms
6 Contextualizing Paul’s "Works of the Law": MMT in New Testament Scholarship
7 The Johannine Literature and the Background of Its Dualistic Language
8 Communal Meals in the Qumran Texts and the Quest for the Context of the Last Supper
9 The Dead Sea Scrolls, Scriptural Authority, and the Emerging Canon
10 Apocalyptic Writings in Qumran and the Community’s Idea of History
11 Qumran and the Essenes: On the Historical Value of the Ancient Sources
12 Qumran and Archaeology
Summary and Concluding Perspectives: The Scrolls and the New Testament after Seventy-Five Years—What Have We Learned?
Jörg Frey’s magisterial essays, written over twenty-five years, are simply the most comprehensive and authoritative account available of the significance of the Dead Sea Scrolls for New Testament scholarship.~John J. Collins, Holmes Professor of Old Testament Emeritus, Yale University
This volume by a leading international specialist on the New Testament offers the most comprehensive assessment of the Dead Sea Scrolls and the New Testament to date. In addition to examining a series of issues raised by the finds from Qumran in depth, Frey also offers a wide-ranging exposition of the history of research over the last three quarters of a century.~Charlotte Hempel, Professor of Hebrew Bible and Second Temple Judaism and Head of the School of Philosophy, Theology and Religion, University of Birmingham
Jörg Frey is a preeminent scholar of ancient Judaism and early Christianity. In this volume we have a collection of Frey’s finest work on the Qumran scrolls with a view to their relevance for understanding the New Testament and earliest Christianity. The essays are rigorous yet accessible; they comprise a great introduction to the Qumran scrolls for the novice and are still full of rich insights for the seasoned scholar.~Michael F. Bird, Academic Dean and Lecturer in Theology, Ridley College, Melbourne, Australia