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Ritual Failure and Theological Innovation in Early Christianity
Author: Peter-Ben Smit
In Felix culpa: Ritual Failure and Theological Innovation in Early Christianity, Peter-Ben Smit argues that ritual developments were key to the development of early Christianity. Focusing on rituals that go wrong, he shows precisely how ritual infelicities are a catalyst for reflection upon ritual and their development in terms of their performance as well as the meaning attributed to them. Smit discusses texts from the Pauline epistles and the Gospel of Mark, and provides a chapter on Philo of Alexandria by way of contextualization in the Greco-Roman world. By stressing the importance of ritual, the present book invites a reconsideration of all too doctrinally focused approaches to early Christian communities and identities. It also highlights the embodied and performative character of what being in Christ amounted to two millennia ago.
Translating the Hebrew Bible in Medieval Iberia provides the princeps diplomatic edition and a comprehensive study of Oxford, Bodleian Library, MS Hunt. 268. The manuscript, produced in the Iberian Peninsula in the late thirteenth century, features a biblical glossary-commentary in Hebrew that includes 2,018 glosses in the vernacular and 156 in Arabic, and to date is the only manuscript of these characteristics known to have been produced in this region.

Esperanza Alfonso has edited the text and presents here a study of it, examining its pedagogical function, its sources, its exegetical content, and its extraordinary value for the study of biblical translation in the Iberian Peninsula and in the Sephardic Diaspora. Javier del Barco provides a detailed linguistic study and a glossary of the corpus of vernacular glosses.
Reading the Arabic Bible in the Tafsīrs of Ibn Barraǧān and al-Biqāʿī
In Interpreting the Qurʾān with the Bible, R. Michael McCoy III brings together two lesser known yet accomplished commentators on the Qurʾān and the Bible: the muʿtabir Abū al-Ḥakam ʿAbd al-Salām b. al-Išbīlī (d. 536/1141), referred to as Ibn Barraǧān, and qāriʾ al-qurrāʾ Ibrāhīm b. ʿUmar b. Ḥasan al-Biqāʿī (d. 885/1480). In this comparative study, comprised of manuscript analysis and theological exegesis, a robust hermeneutic emerges that shows how Ibn Barraǧān’s method of naẓm al-qurʾān and al-Biqāʿī’s theory of ʿilm munāsabāt al-qurʾān motivates their reading and interpretation of the Arabic Bible. The similarities in their quranic hermeneutics and approach to the biblical text are astounding as each author crossed established boundaries and pushed the acceptable limits of handling the Bible in their day.
Une analyse comparée de la notion de “démon” dans la Septante et dans la Bible Hébraïque
Author: Anna Angelini
This book offers a thorough analysis of demons in the Hebrew Bible and Septuagint in the wider context of the ancient Near East and the Greek world. Taking a fresh and innovative angle of enquiry, Anna Angelini investigates continuities and changes in the representation of divine powers in Hellenistic Judaism, thereby revealing the role of the Greek translation of the Bible in shaping ancient demonology, angelology, and pneumatology. Combining philological and semantic analyses with a historical approach and anthropological insights, the author both develops a new method for analyzing religious categories within biblical traditions and sheds new light on the importance of the Septuagint for the history of ancient Judaism.

Le livre propose une analyse approfondie des démons dans la Bible Hébraïque et la Septante, à la lumière du Proche Orient Ancien et du contexte grec. Par un nouvel angle d’approche, Anna Angelini met en lumière dynamiques de continuité et de changement dans les représentations des puissances divines à l’époque hellénistique, en soulignant l’importance de la traduction grecque de la Bible pour la compréhension de la démonologie, de l’angélologie et de la pneumatologie antiques. En intégrant l’analyse philologique et sémantique avec une approche historique et des méthodes anthropologiques, l’autrice développe une nouvelle méthodologie pour analyser des catégories religieuses à l’intérieur des traditions bibliques et affirme la valeur de la Septante pour l’histoire du judaïsme antique.
King David in the Image of the Shekhinah in Kabbalistic Literature
In The Feminine Messiah: King David in the Image of the Shekhina in Kabbalistic Literature, Ruth Kara-Ivanov Kaniel presents an in-depth study focusing on the centrality of the figure of King David in Jewish culture and mystical literature. King David is one of the most colorful, complex, and controversial personalities in Jewish lore. While numerous studies have focused on David's centrality to biblical literature and late antiquity, to date no comprehensive scholarly attempt has been made to investigate his image in Jewish kabbalistic literature. This innovative study also contributes to the understanding of the connection between the mystical and psychoanalytic perception of the self, as well as illuminating issues of gender fluidity, identity, and sexuality in medieval kabbalistic literature.
Grieving, Brooding, and Transforming: The Spirit, The Bible, and Gender is a collection of scholarly essays by Pentecostal women. It explores troubling biblical texts, as well as those of contemporary church life, in regards to the portrayal of women. The authors seek to identify the presence and work of the Spirit that is often hidden within the contours of these texts. A Pentecostal feminist hermeneutic desires to move beyond suspicion into the deeper terrain of the Spirit’s mission of grieving, brooding, and transforming a broken world. The essays point to the purposes of God toward justice and the healing of creation.
This volume provides an overview of the development of the Patriarchate of Constantinople from Late Antiquity to the Early Ottoman period (4th to 15th c.). It highlights continuities and changes in the organizational, dogmatic, and intellectual framework of the central ecclesiastical institution of the Byzantine Empire in the face of political and religious upheavals. The volume pays attention to the relations of the Patriarchate with other churches in the West and in the East. Across the disciplinary divide between Byzantine and Ottoman studies, the volume explains the longevity of the Patriarchate beyond the fall of Byzantium in 1453 up to modern times. A particular focus is laid on an original register book of the 14th century.

Contributors are: Claudia Rapp, Frederick Lauritzen, Tia M. Kolbaba, Johannes Preiser-Kapeller, Marie-Hélène Blanchet, Dimitrios G. Apostolopoulos, Machi Païzi-Apostolopoulou, Klaus-Peter Todt, Mihailo S. Popović, Konstantinos Vetochnikov, Ekaterini Mitsiou, Vratislav Zervan, and Christian Gastgeber.
Volume Editor: Igor Dorfmann-Lazarev
Apocryphal traditions, often shared by Jews and Christians, have played a significant role in the history of both religions. The 26 essays in this volume examine regional and linguistic developments in Ethiopia, Egypt, Syria, Armenia, the Balkans, and Italy. Dissenting groups, such as the Samaritans, followers of John the Baptist, and mediæval dualists are also discussed. Furthermore, the book looks at interactions of Judaism and Christianity with the religions of Iran.
Seldom verified or authorized, and frequently rejected by Churches, apocryphal texts had their own process of development, undergoing significant transformations. The book shows how apocryphal accounts could become a medium of literary and artistic elaboration and mythological creativity. Local adaptations of Biblical stories indicate that copyists, authors and artists conceived of themselves as living not in a post-Biblical era, but in direct continuity with Biblical personages.
Social Networks and Religious Identity in Late Antique Egypt
The Manichaean Church in Kellis presents an in-depth study of social organisation within the religious movement known as Manichaeism in Roman Egypt. In particular, it employs papyri from Kellis (Ismant el-Kharab), a village in the Dakhleh Oasis, to explore the socio-religious world of lay Manichaeans in the fourth century CE.
Manichaeism has often been perceived as an elitist, esoteric religion. Challenging this view, Teigen draws on social network theory and cultural sociology, and engages with the study of lived ancient religion, in order to apprehend how laypeople in Kellis appropriated Manichaean identity and practice in their everyday lives. This perspective, he argues, not only provides a better understanding of Manichaeism: it also has wider implications for how we understand late antique ‘religion’ as a social phenomenon