Jesus and Early SynagoguesCross-file under New Book.
When we situate Jesus’ ministry within what we know of early synagogues and their functions, we can infer that Jesus’ teaching and proclamation would have been open to discussion and debate for the assembly to decide whether to accept or reject it, just like any other proposition put forward in a public synagogue. We must remember that public synagogues represented the town, and that the decisions made in local synagogue assemblies were thus made for the town as a whole. If Jesus could persuade the local assemblies to accept his teaching and proclamation of the outbreak of the Kingdom of God, and to repent in light of it (Mark 1:14-15), it would have been tantamount to the corporate acceptance of the proclamation by that town.
See Also: The Role of the Synagogue in the Aims of Jesus (Fortress Press, 2017).
By Jordan J. Ryan
Assistant Professor of New Testament
University of Dubuque Theological Seminary
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