Was Paul a faithful reader of Scripture? Or did he twist Scripture to whatever he wanted? I believe Paul read faithfully, but must admit there are some problem texts. His use of Hosea 1:9-10 and Hosea 2:23 in Romans 9:24-26 is one that’s puzzled me for years. In Bryan E. Lewis’ published mDiv dissertation, Jew and Gentile Reconciled, he presents an ingenious solution, while unearthing a significant but surprisingly overlooked theme in the NT.
Like many in my age group, my upbringing was filled with New Year prophecy updates and Left Behind novels. Growing up in the Calvary Chapel family (and still happily in it!), this was my bread and butter. But also like many my age, I have found myself reconsidering some childhood assumptions. In light of the modern Christian shift against supporting a national state and prophetic future for Israel, The New Christian Zionism is an opportunity to reconsider a dominant but former consensus of the past, but with fresh argumentation for a fresh generation.
“Paul lived and worked, in fact, in at least three worlds at once” (p75), namely, Israel, Greece, and Rome. I’m working through N.T. Wright’s leviathanesque Paul and the Faithfulness of God, and in this first major ‘part’ (348 pages) he is first attempting to situate Paul in history before turning to his worldview and theology, parts 2 and 3 respectively.
In preparation for my first session of my Christ & the Cross class at Calvary Chapel Bible College York I was dwelling on the ambiguities in the word seed, how it could imply singular or plural, and had a few ‘aha’ moments that I thought I’d share. This is by no means exhaustive but it is a starting point.