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Jewish Themes in The New Testament
by Paul Morris
To me this book though interesting fails to really live up to its title. I was expecting something that would elaborate on the Jewish themes that are there in the New Testament and draw them out so that we as Christians could come to a better understanding of what it actually was that these themes represented to Christ and His followers, and how this can open up the Bible and our faith.
That said the blurb on the back of the book does talk instead of this book being about what the New Testament taught about "Jewish People in the era of the New Covenant" - and perhaps this then should have been the title, because there is a lot of this in it, including an involved look at understanding how differences may have evolved and developed between Pauline Christian churches and the Jewish churches.
For me though this book helps demonstrate how differential Pauline theology often is from the Jewish theology that could have developed and is there - so on the whole I would say this book is not really about Jewish themes in the New Testament but rather about looking at how the division arose and became so entrenched as to become anti-semitic between the Christian and Jewish faiths.
I'm not sure I agree with all Morris has to say in this book, in fact I have real problems with some of it because despite calling it Jewish Themes in the New Testament what we actually have to my mind is a very Christo-centric analysis of Pauline themes on Jewish themes. Also it is very much a book that seems aimed at conversion, even though we get a very long and involved section on Pre-Election to explain why Jews are so resistant to conversion, but yet we should still try ... for the remnant if nothing else it seems.
However if you are interested in understanding more how the divisions evolved and are still evolving then this is an interesting book to read.
Reviewer: Melanie Carroll (03/09/13)