1 Introduction Numbers 17:16-26, part of the priestly pentateuchal literature, tells of the miraculous flowering of Aaron’s staff. In the story, the flowering confirms that Yhwh has chosen Aaron and relieves Yhwh from the Israelites’ complaints (v. 20). Yhwh then commands Moses to place the
Theory and Method are two words that cause considerable consternation in the academic study of religion. Although everyone claims to be aware of and to engage them, the fact of the matter is that they remain poorly understood. Some see the terms as irritants that get in the way of data interpretation and translation. Others may invoke them sporadically to appear in vogue but then return quickly and myopically to their material and with little concern for the larger issues that such terms raise. To contribute to these debates, the present volume reproduces select articles from
Method and Theory in the Study of Religion (MTSR) from the first 25 volumes of the journal, and allows a group of younger scholars to introduce and review them, asking if the issues raised are still relevant to the field.
complicate or even undermine those conclusions. Frequently left unnoticed or unaddressed is the fact that the Visions of Amram presents Aaron as a holy and everlasting priest, his lineage as existing in perpetuity, and the sacrificial system as integral to its religious vision. These aspects of the
Aaron is the biblical name for the brother of Moses, who is known as Hārūn b. ʿImrān in the Qurʾān and in Muslim tradition, with the Arabic form of the Hebrew name Aharōn likely resulting from transmission through Syriac in pre-Islamic times. Mentioned by name twenty times in the Qurʾān, revelation
the criterion (q.v.) of revelation (furqān,q 21:48-9; cf. 19:53; 7:122; 23:45; 37:114-20; and 20:70 and 26:48, containing the phrase, “We believe in the Lord of Moses and Aaron”; see revelation and inspiration ), and is listed with a number of other prophets (q 4:163; 6:84). Moses asked God to make
Paul and The Restoration of Humanity in Light of Ancient Jewish Traditions, Aaron Sherwood questions the assumption of universalism in Pauline thought, and finds instead that relevant Pauline traditions depict a partly restricted and particularly Israelite restoration of humanity. This important Jewish component of Paul’s thought remains largely unrecognized, but Pauline and other ancient Jewish traditions consistently present Israel and non-Israelites' uniting in their worship of Yhwh as the restoration of both Israel and humanity.
Aaron Sherwood demonstrates in Pauline traditions the same deployment of Israel-nations unification as in biblical and post-biblical traditions. This suggests that rather than secondarily finding space for Gentile justification, the restoration of humanity plays a generative role in Paul’s theology, mission, and apostolic self-identity.
Jacques Réda: Being There, Almost, Aaron Prevots studies the work of this major contemporary French writer since the 1950s—poetry, novels, literary essays, short prose, jazz histories. He particularly examines Réda’s explorations of place, including how the ‘world’s energy’ becomes the ideal dancing partner, poetry incarnate in one’s arms.
Réda embodies ‘being there, almost’ because he wanders with great wisdom yet renounces any glory in this metaphorical dance. He aligns us with the outer world’s rhythms and time’s passage. Fleeting waves of perception create a voluptuous, unified whole. In considering the arc of Réda’s works from 1952-2015, Aaron Prevots locates a progression from post-Baudelairean
flânerie to commemoration of childhood, classical antiquity, fellow writers, jazz, physics, swing, theology, and trains.
Ancient texts are ambiguous, and the Hebrew Bible is no exception. One might even frame the history of a religion as a history of a belief system’s management of ambiguity. Applying a linguistic model, Aaron systematically examines and veritably celebrates this inherent ambiguity in order to understand God-related idioms in the Hebrew Bible, more specifically, whether a particular idiom is meant to be understood metaphorically. Aaron examines the original intent of the writers of biblical literature and suggests that one can conceptualize texts as metonyms for their authors and their historical contexts. Through an in-depth exploration of semantic theory, Aaron places metaphor on a non-binary “continuum of meaning” instead of using a limiting either/or conception of figurative speech. Aaron challenges current methodologies that dominate biblical scholarship regarding metaphor and offers original, viable alternatives to the standard approaches. This interdisciplinary project takes into consideration a broad range of issues, which point to further areas of study. Aaron’s model for gradient judgements, that is, a method for judging statements and placing them on a “continuum of meaning,” offers a new building block for biblical study and interpretation.
Please note that
Biblical Ambiguities was previously published by Brill in hardback (ISBN 90 04 12032 7), still available)
Biblical Ambiguities poses as its central question: When we read a passage in the Hebrew Bible, how do we know whether the passage was meant literally or metaphorically? This study argues that our assumptions as to how language works influences the way we interpret biblical texts. Drawing upon contemporary linguistic theory, Aaron seeks to place before the reader a strategy for deciphering biblical idioms within a theory of semantics, using divine imagery in the Hebrew Bible as the primary focal point. This book presents a gradient model of meaning based on Relevance Theory and the writings of Ray Jackendoff. While numerous biblical passages are considered in detail, the main test case for Aaron’s approach to meaning and metaphor is the Israelite attitude toward idols. Although biblical ideology is usually portrayed as contrasting a literalist idolatry with a more sophisticated Israelite theology, Aaron argues that policies regarding icons had less to do with theology than the politics of governance and language. Part of that critique regards common scholarly assumptions about the literal or metaphorical character of divine imagery and idols. The metaphorization or the literalization of biblical images has served as a reading strategy since ancient times, and often persists in scholarly discourse today. Perhaps as important as Aaron’s suggestion of an alternative approach to the problem of distinguishing metaphorical from literal language, is that his argument raises our consciousness of how we go about interpretive acts when writing the history of Israelite theology.
Life of Aaron is one of the most interesting and sophisticated hagiographical works surviving in Coptic. The work contains descriptions of the lives of ascetic monks, in particular Apa Aaron, on the southern Egyptian frontier in the fourth and early fifth centuries, and was probably written in the sixth century. Even though the first edition of this work was already published by E.A. Wallis Budge in 1915, a critical edition remained outstanding. In this book Jitse H.F. Dijkstra and Jacques van der Vliet present not only a critical text, for the most part based on the only completely preserved, tenth-century manuscript, but also a new translation and an exhaustive commentary addressing philological, literary and historical aspects of the text.