Academic journal article Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society

The Semitic Background of the New Testament

Academic journal article Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society

The Semitic Background of the New Testament

Article excerpt

The Semitic Background of the New Testament. By Joseph Fitzmyer. The Biblical Resource Series. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1997, xxi + 524 pp. + 300 pp., $35.00 paper.

This volume is a reprint combining two of Fitzmyer's classic studies, Essays on the Semitic Background of the New Testament (1971, 1974), and A Wandering Aramean: Collected Aramaic Essays (1979). There is a new preface and, more importantly, a new appendix that contains additional notes and bibliographic references to more recent works. But this appendix is only ten pages long and most of it is comprised of corrections and bibliographic additions to footnotes. The longest comment, concerning the interchange between Fitzmyer and G. Vermes on methodology in studying the Aramaic substratum of dominical sayings in the Gospels, is less than a page long.

Essays on the Semitic Background of the New Testament is a collection of papers originally published between 1955 and 1967 on a variety of NT issues. It includes two essays on the use of the OT, six on passages from the Gospels, two each on the Corinthian correspondence and Hebrews, and four on early Christianity. …

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