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Bekken, Per Jarle

The Word is Near You

A Study of Deuteronomy 30:12-14 in Paul's Letter to the Romans in a Jewish Context

Series:Beihefte zur Zeitschrift für die neutestamentliche Wissenschaft 144

    139,95 € / $196.00 / £104.99*

    eBook (PDF)
    Publication Date:
    February 2012
    Copyright year:
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    Aims and Scope

    The study deals with a difficult and much-debated text in Paul’s Letter to the Romans, 9:30-10:21. The study in particular analyses Paul’s use and interpretation of Deuteronomy 30:12-14 in Romans 10:4-17. Scholars have characterized Paul’s exegesis here as idiosyncratic, fanciful, baffling, and arbitrary. By a comparison with Jewish writings near Paul in time, such as the writings of Philo of Alexandria and Baruch, the thesis is argued that Paul’s  treatment of Deuteronomy 30:12-14 can be located within Jewish exegetical method, expository structure, terminology as well as content and context.

    In comparison with Baruch and Philo, it has been shown that Paul’s handling of Deuteronomy 30:12-14  can be placed within a Jewish context as to the way the biblical quotations are rendered. The thesis is substantiated that Paul’s expository rendering of Deuteronomy 30:12-14 follows the method of exegetical paraphrase of a biblical quotation. So, in comparison with Baruch and Philo, Paul’s interpretative rendering of Deuteronomy 30:12-14 falls within a form of exposition, in which words, phrases and sentences from the Old Testament quotation are either repeated or replaced by interpretative terms and supplemented with other qualifying terms. Thus, Paul’s christological exposition of Deut 30:12-14 can be located within the method of exegetical paraphrase, with a parallel in Baruch’s application of this OT Scripture to the personified ‘Wisdom’.

    Supplementary Information


    23.0 x 15.5 cm
    294 pages
    Type of Publication:
    Pauline Studies; Philonic Studies; Jewish Eschatology; The Jewish law; Paul’s Letter to the Romans

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    Per Jarle Bekken, Oslo University College, Oslo, Norway.


    "Anyone doing advanced research on Paul's usage of Scripture or on Romans 9-11 will find a stimulating conversation partner here."
    Max Rogland in: Presbyterion Convenant Seminary Review 36/1

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