The Mystery of God: Early Jewish Mysticism and the New Testament

This book brings together the perspectives of apocalypticism and early Jewish mysticism to illuminate aspects of New Testament theology. The first part begins with a consideration of the mystical character of apocalypticism and then uses the Book of Revelation and the development of views about the heavenly mediator figure of Enoch to explore the importance of apocalypticism in the Gospels and Acts, the Pauline Letters and finally the key theological themes in the later books of the New Testament. The second and third parts explore the character of early Jewish mysticism by taking important themes in the early Jewish mystical texts such as the Temple and the Divine Body to demonstrate the relevance of this material to New Testament interpretation.

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Christopher Rowland has been Dean Ireland Professor of the Exegesis of Holy Scripture, University of Oxford, and Fellow of Queen's College since 1991. His most recent book (with Judith Kovacs) is a commentary on the reception history of the Book of Revelation (2004).

Christopher R.A. Morray-Jones, Ph.D. (1988) Cambridge University, J.D. (2006) University of California, Berkeley, is currently practicing law in Oakland, California.
He is author of A Transparent Illusion: The Dangerous Vision of Water in Hekhalot Mysticism (JSJSup 59; Brill, 2002)
"The book will serve not only to stir the discussion; it will also prove to be a useful core resource to the discussion, providing useful, extensive and up-to-date bibliography as well as the mature insights of its authors." – Grant Macaskill, in: Journal for the Study of the New Testament 33/5
"...on tient là un ouvrage important qui ouvre des pistes demandant certes à être vérifiées mais qui, indéniablement, donnent à penser." – Ch. Grappe, in: Revue d’histoire et de philosophie religieuses 90/3 (2010)
"Durch die zahlreichen Informationen, die Referate und Diskussionen zur älteren Forschungsliteratur und die ausführliche Bibliographie … stellt diese Werk … ein gutes Hilfsmittel dar, das einen fundierten Einstieg in die Beschäftigung mit den Traditionen der frühen jüdischen Mystik ermöglicht." – Beate Ego, in: Theologische Literaturzeitung 137 (2012)
"…opening up and emphasizing dimensions of the New Testament that are not usually highlighted. I congratulate [the authors] on a fine contribution to the discussion of somewhat neglected dimensions of earliest Christianity." – Michael E. Stone, Hebrew University of Jerusalem, in: Journal of Jewish Studies 62 (2011)
All those interested in the relationship between early Christianity and ancient Judaism, especially regarding the debt of early Christianity to apocalypticism.