Exegetical soundings in Pauline texts, illustrated by probes into 1 Thessalonians, Romans, Ephesians, and the Pastorals.
Until we grasp the meaning of the text on its terms, Scripture is little more than a sounding board echoing the religious interpretations readers, all the while supposing this is "what the Bible says."
Gene Boring offers those who preach and teach methods of understanding Scripture contextually in Hearing Paul's Voice. He begins by placing the reader in the position of a first-century believer, demonstrating how such a reader would understand the church and the letter we now call 1 Thessalonians. Our own culture, combined with familiarity of the Bible and church life, has conditioned us to suppose we already understand what the Thessalonian believer had to learn. Hearing the Bible through ears of a Thessalonians opens up the possibility of hearing it afresh in our own time. Boring also explores how Paul's message was interpreted and heard in later generations. The theme throughout is coming within hearing distance of the text, for those whose ears may have been numbed by cultural familiarity.
Hearing Paul's Voice combines careful and reverent critical historical study of the Bible, assuming its results, with theological perception and openness to hearing the Bible as Word of God. Written with clarity and simplicity, Boring illustrates the relevance of the biblical text and is ideal for preachers and teachers in the church who want to deepen their understanding of the canonical Pauline letters.
Table of Contents
Chapter 1. Grasping and Being Grasped by Paul's Theology
Theology: Faith Seeking Understanding Theology as Personal: Paul, "Julia," and Ourselves Conversion, the Living God, and the New World I Already Live In
Chapter 2. 1 Thessalonians: Theological Facets for Converted Beginners
The Loved/Loving Community--Experienced and Lived Out in the Present Eschatology Gets Particular, Focused, Concrete: 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18
Chapter 3. Romans as a Template for Pauline Theology
Sin: Universal Human Need of Salvation (Romans 1:18-3:20) Grace: God's Saving Act (Romans 3:21-4:25) Liberation: The Meaning of Salvation (Romans 5:1-8:39) History: God's Eschatological Plan (Romans 9:1-11:36) Ethics: The Saved Life in Action (Romans 12:1-15:13)
Chapter 4. The Emerging Church: On the Road to the One Holy Catholic Apostolic Church
Pauline Churches, Pauline School Ephesians: The Church at Its Best, en route to Become the Universe 1-2 Timothy, Titus: The Pastor as Radical