Scriptural Interpretation and Community Self-Definition in Luke-Acts and the Writings of Justin Martyr

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Scholars of Christian origins often regard Luke-Acts and the writings of Justin Martyr as similar accounts of the replacement of Israel by the non-Jewish church. According to this view, both authors commandeer the Jewish scriptures as the sole possession of non-Jewish Christ-believers, rather than of Jews. Offering a fresh analysis of the exegesis of Luke and Justin, this book uncovers significant differences between their respective depictions of the privileged status that Christ-believers hold in relation to the Jewish scriptures. Although both authors argue that Christ-believers alone possess an inspired capacity to interpret the Jewish scriptures, unlike Justin, Luke envisages an ongoing role for the Jewish people as recipients of the promises that God pledged to Israel.

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Biographical Note

Susan J. Wendel, Ph.D. (2009) in Early Christianity, McMaster University, is Assistant Professor of New Testament at Briercrest College. She has previously published a paper on the writings of Luke and Justin entitled, "Interpreting the Descent of the Spirit: A Comparison of Justin's Dialogue with Trypho and Luke-Acts," in: Justin Martyr and His Worlds (ed. P. Foster and S. Parvis; Minneapolis: Fortress, 2007).

Review Quotes

"Wendel's book presents many interesting and fresh insights. Her analysis will be of interest to scholars of the third gospel and also those who focus on the writings of Justin. This is a careful and detailed piece of work." – Paul Foster, in: Expository Times124/7
"La thèse est intéressante, et l’ensemble à la fois bien construit et cohérent." – Ch. Grappe, in: Revue d’histoire et de philosophie religieuses 92/3 (2012)

Readership

All those interested in early Christian origins, history, and scriptural interpretation, as well as scholars of Patristic literature, of the New Testament, and of Luke-Acts and Justin Martyr, in particular.

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