Conflicted Boundaries in Wisdom And Apocalypticism by Benjamin G. Wright, Lawrence M. Wills

By Benjamin G. Wright, Lawrence M. Wills

The proposal that knowledge and apocalypticism signify essentially diverse and together particular different types of style and worldview in early Jewish and Christian literature persists in present scholarship. The essays during this quantity, the paintings of the knowledge and Apocalypticism team of the Society of Biblical Literature, problem that ordinarily held view as they discover the social destinations and scholarly buildings of those literatures and observe an historical fact of extra porous different types and intricate interrelationships. the quantity attracts on a vast diversity of Jewish and Christian texts, together with 1 Enoch, Sirach, 4QInstruction, Psalms of Solomon, James, Revelation, and Barnabas.

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J. Neusner and A. J. ; JSJSup 80; Leiden: Brill, 2003), 241–53, together with responses by Robert Doran and me on pages 254–66. RESPONSE TO GEORGE NICKELSBURG, “WISDOM AND APOCALYPTICISM IN EARLY JUDAISM” Sarah J. 1 Although I had an opportunity to respond to George’s essay when the paper was originally presented, returning to it eight years later I am struck by, first, the impressionistic style of the essay, and yet its clarity of insight into the issues involved in rethinking the interrelationship of wisdom and apocalypticism and the producers of these early Jewish texts; second, how much our SBL group has been guided by the agenda proposed in this essay; and third, the fact that so many of the stumbling blocks still remain in understanding the dynamic interrelationship of Jewish wisdom and apocalyptic literature, the communities and individuals behind these texts, and the ways in which we might learn from the interrelationship of Jewish wisdom and apocalyptic about what we see in some New Testament and early Christian writings.

Different Emphases in Wisdom and Apocalyptic Texts Our survey has identified ways in which texts that are usually categorized as sapiential can equate wisdom with Torah and also transmit elements of the prophetic tradition, and how they can even make claims of revelation or inspiration. Conversely, we have noted wisdom components in the apocalyptic texts, with wisdom and Torah being equated especially in 2 Baruch. The prophetic element, especially noteworthy in the many strata of 1 Enoch, is to some extent retained in the ongoing interest in eschatology.

Like Ben Sira, the fictional Enoch presents his books as the embodiment of life-giving heavenly wisdom, intended for “all the generations of eternity” (82:1–4; cf. Sir 24:33). 1), and though the text does not cite them, it knows them well. If we move from the fictional world of the primordial sage to the real world of the authors, we find figures who parallel Enoch the scribe. In 98:9 and 99:10 they are “the wise” (frovnimoi), and their “words” are heard and, to judge from 98:15 (where their opponents are mentioned as writing books), they write their words in books that are read.

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