The Spirit in First-Century Judaism

The Spirit in First-Century Judaism

The Spirit in First-Century Judaism

The Spirit in First-Century Judaism

Synopsis

The Spirit in First Century Judaism mirrors the growing recognition that the role of the Spirit in Judaism and early Christianity warrants further scholarly inquiry and moreover lays a cornerstone in the foundation of pneumatological studies by scouring the writings of the likes of Plato and Plutarch, Daniel and the Dead Sea Scrolls, as well as those of Philo of Alexandria and Flavius Josephus. Levison contextualizes the material both historically and literarily, taking seriously the influence of popular Greco-Roman thinking as well as Jewish exegetical traditions. Convincingly argued, cogently presented, and thoroughly documented, this volume, in the words of the Journal of Jewish Studies, has profound ramifications for both Jewish and New Testament Studies. This publication has also been published in hardback, please click here for details."

Excerpt

Although this research would have proven satisfying and stimulating even without personal or professional support, I have been the fortunate recipient of both. I undertook this research in earnest during the summer of 1992 in the marvelous context of a National Endowment for the Humanities Summer Seminar for College Teachers on the theme, “The Greek Encounter With Judaism in the Hellenistic Era,” led by Louis H. Feldman, Professor of Classics at Yeshiva University. That community of scholars, in the purest sense, comprised the crucible in which I could envision the contours of this study. That professional opportunity also yielded a gratifying friendship with Louis, whom I regard as a colleague and friend of enormous worth.

Other scholars provided an unforeseen venue of professional support to render this research feasible. During the Society of Biblical Literature meeting in 1991 (in the book stalls to be exact), I had expressed to Larry Hurtado my dream of studying in Germany. Larry then took the initiative to correspond on my behalf with Martin Hengel, who agreed to sponsor my application for a research fellowship from the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation. David Aune then proffered valuable advice on the research proposal. In November, 1992, I received the good news that I had received a Humboldt research fellowship.

The privilege of passing the 1993–94 academic year in Tübingen, at the Institut für antikes Judentum und hellenistische Religionsgeschichte, of the Eberhard-Karls-Universität Tübingen, proved remarkable. Although I spent the lion’s share of my hours in a study with a wonderful view of the hills, too many other opportunities prevented me from sequestering myself altogether. I participated in a splendid seminar on Torah and Covenant, led by Hermann Lichtenberger, director of the Institute. I attended various seminars sponsored by the Melanchthon Stiftung. I had enlivening conversations with new colleagues and friends, such as Friedrich Avemarie, Otto Betz, Marietta Hämmerle, Ronald Heine, Armin Lange, and others associated with the Institute. Martin and Marianne Hengel were extraordinary hosts, inviting my family and me to their lovely home on countless occasions, both scholarly and celebratory. Martin Hengel’s impact, therefore . . .

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