Both 1 and 2 Maccabees mention various campaigns of Judas Maccabaeus against an opponent called Timothy. The author argues that although 1 Maccabees in several instances does provide more accurate detail, 2 Maccabees’ presentation of these campaigns as chronologically discrete has the greater historical plausibility. Additionally, 2 Maccabees alone preserves a record of a third, historically plausible campaign against Timothy. Overall, 2 Maccabees deserves more esteem as an historical source than it commonly receives.
The article discusses two issues related to the seventh vision of Zechariah. First, it deals with the question of how a secondary revision of the text — or, more precisely, the introduction of the women — changes the entire perspective of the vision. Secondly, this new perspective is looked upon in its cultic aspects and in its relation to the eight visions. Viewed this way the vision presents a kind of fundamental liberation of the land and of its inhabitants, without any comparison in the Old Testament, inasmuch as guilt and wickedness will be taken back to their place of origin.
Forced to defend himself from the slanders spread by his adversaries in Corinth Paul accepts in 2 Cor 11,1–12,18 their challenge and draws a comparison situated on the razor’s edge of the periautologia or of self-praise. More than being a fool’s speech his discourse is an immoderate one and it stands up only because Paul’s competitors lack measure and moderation. The main thesis of the section (2 Cor 11,5-6) announces an apology of Paul’s superiority which will be proved not by means of verbose or empty elocution but by the facts: gratuity in evangelization, ministerial relationships with Christ, visions and revelations, all of them balanced by means of a paradoxical boasting in one’s own weakness.
Who is actually working together with whom in Romans 8,28? The overall sense of the text is rather straightforward. For the ones loving God, good is the ultimate end of all things. The clarity stops here, however, as exegetes wrestle with the actual syntactic understanding of the verb and subject of sunerge1=. This short note advances an argument which seeks to show God as the subject of the intransitive verb sunerge1= with an understanding of the Spirit of Romans 8,26-27 as the one with whom God is working.
This article suggests that the promises to the “conquerors” at the close of each letter to the Asian churches in chapters 2 and 3 of the Apocalypse are based on subsequent events in salvation-history. The first promise (to the conquerors in Ephesus) refers to the creation story, the last promise (to the Laodicean conquerors) refers to the ministry and exaltation of Jesus. The promises to the other churches fit within this salvation-historical line from creation to the ministry of the Messiah, which is taken up again at the end of the book in the eschatological and climactic promise of Rev 21,7.
This note argues that rhetorical canons supply new evidence for the thesis that the Fourth Gospel has two endings, the original (20,30-31) and one that was added later (21,25). Citing Neyrey.s and Müller.s studies of the Fourth Gospel.s use of encomiastic topics in its description of Jesus, the note argues that the topic of epilogue (a topic not observed by either) is also employed in the Gospel and in conformity to Aphthonius.s instruction. Indeed, the topic is employed not once, as expected, but twice, evidencing the presence of both an original conclusion and an amended one.
This article is thought to be an interaction with the interesting and innovative contribution of Wolfgang Zwickel in Biblica 73 (1992). He disagreed with the cult aetiology hypothesis for the “Altarbaunotizen” of the Old Testament. His argumentation was convincing, but his alternative explanation seemed to be comparatively weak. The present contribution tries to give another explanation for the phenomenon of the “Altarbaunotizen”. They can be connected indirectly with the blessing promise of Gen 12,3 and therefore to the whole theological thrust of the book of Genesis. The offerings can be interpreted as witness to the Canaanite population. Even though this thought seems to be quite uncommon, many hints can be found in the texts, that point into this direction, supported by a late Jewish interpretation of Gen 21,33.
This article uncovers a sophisticated structure of the Book of Haggai and its significance. The structure of the book is part of the rhetoric of the prophet to contend with the people’s thoughts that reality did not meet their hopes. They expected in vain the renewal of the ‘old days’ to be immediate. Therefore, they believed that God was not with them and felt they were still rejected by Him. Haggai argues to the contrary: God was with them despite the seemingly desperate situation, and the anticipated reality was bound to materialize, but only gradually. The Book’s structure also shows that it is not a random collection of oracles but one unified literary work.