Individual and Community in Paul's Letter to the Romans
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Paperback / softback
Publisher: JCB Mohr (Paul Siebeck)
Number of Pages: 229
Width: 23.2 cm
Height: 15.5 cm
Ben C. Dunson explores the relationship between individuals and community in Paul's letters. He begins with a treatment of scholarly views on the issue, paying special attention to the influential twentieth-century debate over the role of anthropology in Pauline thought that took place between Rudolf Bultmann and Ernst Käsemann, a debate that has greatly impacted the direction of current Pauline scholarship. Then, by comparing and contrasting Paul's thought with that of the Stoic philosopher Epictetus, he argues, by means of a typology of the individual in Romans, that the individual and community are tightly integrated concepts in Pauline thought, despite a dominant trend in Pauline scholarship of pitting communal themes against individual ones. He maintains that there is a rich diversity of ways of describing the individual in Romans, and furthermore, that central themes (faith, justification, church, etc.) in Paul's letters do not make sense unless individual and communal themes are seen in their inextricable unity.