“Paul’s Place in a First-Century Revival of the Discourse of ‘Equality’”

The discourse of “equality,” which originated in democratic Athens, revived in the first century CE, in response to growing inequality between the classes.  Symptomatic of the increase in inequality in the early Roman Empire were the numerous and widespread outbreaks of riots and uprisings in the cities of Greece and Asia Minor in the first and second centuries CE.  Among the thinkers who revisited the idea of “equality” in this period was Paul of Tarsus, who appealed to the principle of “equality” in order to encourage the Christ-believers at Corinth to contribute to a collection of money for the poor in Jerusalem.  This essay compares Paul’s concept of “equality” with those of seven contemporaries (Philo, Plutarch, Dio Chrysostom, Pseudo-Ecphantus, Diotogenes, Sthenidas, Pseudo-Arcytas).  Paul’s concept of “equality” is shown to be significantly more “democratic” that those of his contemporaries.  More importantly, Paul extends the principle of “equality” into the socio-economic sphere, making “equality” the goal of relations between those who enjoy “abundance” and those who suffer “lack.”  Paul’s extension of the principle of “equality” into the sphere of economic relations has virtually no precedent in the Greco-Roman world.  The source of Paul’s originality is sought in the egalitarian impulses that were at work in the earliest communities of Christ-believers, and finally in Paul’s own theology.…


“Space, Place, and the Race for Power: Rabbis, Demons, and the Construction of Babylonia”

Demons were an important part of Late Antique life across religious divides. This article explores how the authors of the Babylonian Talmud “think with” the demonic to produce meaningful rabbinic spaces.…


“Exegesis and Appropriation: Reading Rashi in Late Medieval Spain”

The Commentary on the Torah of Rashi (Solomon ben Isaac; 1040–1105) stands out as the most widely studied and influential Hebrew Bible commentary ever composed.…


“Finitude, Phenomenology, and Theology in Heidegger’s Sein und Zeit”

Heidegger’s descriptions of Dasein’s “finitude” (Endlichkeit) in Sein und Zeit are based on Dasein’s experience of thrownness and mortality, and not on theology and the relation to God, methodologically suspended early on in the treatise.…


Emerging Principles of a Theology of Shalom

To mark the fiftieth anniversary of the Second Vatican Council declaration, Nostra Aetate, Saint Joseph’s University in Philadelphia commissioned sculptor Joshua Koffman to create an original artwork called “Synagoga and Ecclesia in Our Time” for the plaza outside the campus chapel.…


Maimonides on Perfecting Perfection

What does one do after one has reached apprehension of God? According to Maimonides in his Guide of the Perplexed, there is indeed more to be done.…


Wissen und Lomdus: Idealism, Modernity, and History in some Nineteenth-Century Rabbinic and Philosophical responses to the Wissenschaft des Judentums

This article examines the parallel strategies taken by Hermann Cohen (1842–1918) and contemporaries in the Eastern European Lithuanian Talmudic academies to develop modernizing interpretations of Jewish text, tradition, and law.…


Examining the Role of the Reader: A Necessary Task for Catholic Biblical Interpretation

In this article, I enter the discussion over what constitutes Catholic biblical interpretation to argue that in order for biblical interpretation to be “Catholic,” it must integrate hermeneutical approaches that foreground real readers within the context of lived realities.…


Church and Space in the Middle Ages

This is an English translation of the Editorial to Annales. Histoire, Sciences Sociales Volume 72 – Issue 1. On the publication of their two most recent volumes in 2016,[1] the Annales invited Dominique Iogna-Prat and Florian Mazel to participate in an exercise in lecture croisée.


Constructed Female Bodies

Female sexual and sexualized bodies are constructed in multiple ways. One construction posits that females are autonomous and self-determining, and advocates for unimpeded choice regarding sexual expression, bodies, and reproduction.


“O Sweet Cautery”: John of the Cross and the Healing of the Natural World”

“O Sweet Cautery”: John of the Cross and the Healing of the Natural World” Mary Frohlich, RSCJ, Catholic Theological Union at Chicago In “The Living Flame of Love,” John of the Cross began to use the image of “cautery” to express the paradox of one act that both grievously wounds and radically heals.…


Jesus and the World of Grace, 1968–2016: An Idiosyncratic Theological Memoir

“Jesus and the World of Grace, 1968–2016: An Idiosyncratic Theological Memoir” William L. Portier, University of Dayton, CTS president Looking back at the last five decades of my development as a theologian, I offer an impressionistic look at Catholic theology in the United States.…