According to a widespread opinion the purpose of the Second Book of Maccabees is to emphasize the great importance of the temple. This is plausible to a certain extent if the summary of history is read togther with the two introductory letters. But those authors are right who consider the letters to be originally independent of each other and also of the abrigded version. The construction of the summary taken in itself reveals a soteriology which attributes an important part to the witness of faith for the history of salvation, especially when bloodshed is involved. With regard to this point the abrigded version and the first introductory letter harmonize. Both the summary and the work as a whole have therefore a soteriological orientation and stress the witness of faith as relevant for salvation.
In an attempt to go beyond conventional sociological and anthropological analyses of the religious aspect of the Qumranite sectarian corpus, this article considers the reuse of the Priestly Blessing (PB) of Numbers 6 in the Community
Rule (1QS). Comparison of how curses were applied elsewhere in Second Temple Judaism informs reflections on what this imaginative redeployment of the PB tells us of the ideology and self-identity of the Qumran group, highlighting their
reconfiguration and exclusive appropriation of the covenants with Israel.
The aim of this short study is to propose a hermeneutical reading of Johannine soteriology based on John 3,16 and 1 John 4,9 in order to clarify in what sense Jesus was ‘the cause’ salvation. I will employ the Aristotelian categorization of the various causes as used by Philo in his explanation of the creation of the cosmos and apply his scheme to the Johannine texts. The result is (1) a specific definition of what constitutes the cause of salvation and (2) the important distinction between the means (understood as the four conjoint Aristotelian causes) and the mode (understood as faith) of salvation.
After having shown that Gal 5,13-25 forms a rhetorical and semantic unit, the article examines Gal 5,17, a crux interpretum, and proves that the most plausible reading is this one: 'For the flesh desires against the Spirit — but the Spirit desires against the flesh, for those [powers] fight each other — to prevent you from doing those things you would', and draws its soteriological consequences.