This monograph explores the relationship between angels and humans during the late Second Temple and early Christian period (200BCE-100CE).
The issue of the similarity of appearance between humans and angels is considered in the first part of the book. In the second part three topics are covered: humans and angels living together in communities, angels as recipients of human hospitality, and the possibility of human-angel hybrid offspring.
This study provides insight into how the ancient Jews and Christians defined "angel", and it argues that a clear distinction was maintained between angels and humans. These analyses have implications for our understanding of nascent Christology as well as soteriology, and also for our understanding of early Jewish Mysticism.
Kevin P. Sullivan, D.Phil. (2002) in Theology, University of Oxford, is Visiting Assistant Professor of Religion at Illinois Wesleyan University.
Table of contents
Chapter 1: Introduction: Wrestling with Angels
PART ONE: APPEARANCE
Chapter 2: “Blinded by the Light”: Angels as Human Beings
Chapter 3: “You Look Positively Angelic”: Human Beings as Angels
PART TWO: INTERACTION
Chapter 4: “Angels in Our Midst”: Human-Angel Communities
Chapter 5: “Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner”: Hospitality and Eating with Angels
Chapter 6: “They Might Be Giants”: Human-Angel Hybrid Offspring
Chapter 7: Conclusion: Limping toward a Better Understanding
All those interested in angelology, late Second Temple Judaism, early Christianity, the New Testament, the development of Christology, as well as clergy, students and educated laypeople.