Toward a Postcolonial Reading of the Epistle of James offers an interpretation of Jas 2:1-13 putting the text in the midst of the Roman imperial system of rank. This study shows that the conflict of the text has more to do with differences of rank than poverty and wealth. The main problem is that the Christian assemblies are acting according to Roman cultural etiquette instead of their Jewish-Christian heritage when a Roman equestrian and a beggar visit the assembly. The members of the assemblies are accused of having become too Roman. From a postcolonial
perspective, this is a typical case of hybrid identities. Additional key concepts from postcolonialism, such as diaspora, ‘othering’, naming of oppressors, and binarisms such as coloniser/colonised, centre/margin, honour/shame and power/powerless, are highlighted throughout the study.
The Radboud Prestige Lectures in New Testament 2010 were presented by Prof. Michael Wolter (University of Bonn). His prestige lecture was entitled: ‘Which is the real Jesus?’. In this lecture he challenged many of the current views within the historical Jesus research by critically evaluating the approaches in various categories. Afterwards this lecture was presented to a variety of scholars from different disciplines who approach the problem from their particular perspectives, thus bringing a rich texture of insights, apart from engaging critically with Wolter’s views. Thus one can appreciate the role the quest for the historical Jesus plays within a wider framework. This resulted in interesting articles that not only deal with historical, but also with philosophical and hermeneutical issues.
Paul and the Rise of the Slave locates Paul’s description of himself as a “slave of Messiah Jesus” in the epistolary prescript of Paul’s Epistle to Rome within the conceptual world of those who experienced the social reality of slavery in the first century C.E. The Althusserian concept of
interpellation and the
Life of Aesop are employed throughout as theoretical frameworks to enhance how Paul offered positive ways for slaves to imagine an existence apart from Roman power. An exegesis of Romans 6:12-23 seeks to reclaim the earliest reception of Romans as prophetic discourse aimed at an anti-Imperial response among slaves and lower class readers.