Monday, October 03, 2016

Reading Acts on Romans

OVER AT THE READING ACTS BLOG, Phil Long continues his informative series of posts on Paul's Letter to the Romans. I hadn't planned to follow it, but he is interacting with a lot of ancient Jewish (and occasionally not-so-Jewish - see below) literature, so I'm going to list his recent posts and the texts they cite. Regarding the not-so-Jewish literature, both the Testaments of the Twelve Patriarchs and the Odes of Solomon are second-century CE unambiguously Christian texts and should not be cited as "Second Temple" texts. It is true that the Testaments of the Twelve Patriarchs used some Jewish sources. The Greek Testament of Levi is based on Aramaic Levi (most of which still survives) and the Greek Testament of Naphtali appears to be based on an ancient Jewish Naphtali text (in Hebrew?), some of which can be reconstructed from later sources. But both Greek Testaments are Christian texts as they stand now. Aramaic Levi is well worth citing on its own, if relevant, but if material in the Greek Testament of Levi is not also found in Aramaic Levi, it is better not to use it as evidence for ancient Jewish thought.

For attitudes toward same-sex relations in ancient Judaism, see here and here.

An earlier post in Phil Long's Roman's series was also noted here.