The motive of joy in suffering for Jesus' sake, makes the last beatitude in Matt 5,11-12 and Luke 6,22-23 different from the former blessings. The persecution form present in this beatitude seems to be an authentic saying of Jesus, subsequently widespread in NT literature. Such a motive, in fact, does not appear in Judaism and in intertestamental or in apocryphal literature. The First Letter of Peter is instead a special witness of 'joy in suffering'.
Scholars have long debated whether "caris" in 1 Pet 2,19-20 should be understood as the unmerited favor which is divinely bestowed upon those who please God, or whether it represents a human action that secures a favorable response from God. What interpreters have continued to overlook, however, are the ancient social dynamics which underlie this passage. By interpreting "caris" within the framework of reciprocity and gift-exchange in the Greco-Roman world, this study brings fresh perspective to a problem which has long divided scholarship, and also suggests a new direction for understanding the letter's theology of suffering.
The current understanding of the Book of Job, put forth by M. Tsevat in 1966 and widely accepted, is that YHWH implicitly denies the existence of divine justice. Retribution is not part of reality, but only a delusion. The present article argues that the book teaches the need for fidelity in the face of divine injustice. The Theophany shows a God whose care for the world of nature hints at his care for humans. The reader, unlike Job, knows that Job's suffering is important to God, as establishing the possibility of true human loyalty.