Didache and Judaism: Jewish Roots of an Ancient Christian-Jewish Work

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A&C Black, Jan 1, 2004 - Religion - 291 pages
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The present study of the Didache is certainly neither new nor innovative in pointing out the presence and richness of borrowings from and references to Judaism prior to or coeval to this ancient Christian-Jewish text, which still remains, for certain aspects, enigmatic. However, there are new paths of reading that through an analysis focusing on some institutions and rituals and doctrinal beliefs typically Jewish sedimented in the text and reformulated for a Christian-Jewish milieu redeem the interpretation of the Didache from an unjust New Testament mortgage or from the generic reference to Judaism. The fecundity of the text is enriched by limiting the research to the exploration of historical questions regarding the definition of the identity of the various groups/currents/movements present in the Didache, which often institutionally and, at times, even doctrinally interact with antecedent or coeval Judaism(s). The identities of these groups/currents/movements must be continuously defined and not merely evoked. The perspective nurtured by avoiding the danger of generically referring to the Jewish origins/roots of the Didache could lead to the identification in some parts or strata of the text which has survived of groups/factions within the Christian-Jewish community which share the same (Jewish) institutions and re-proposes the same dialectics among different (Jewish) groups. At the same time yet in a broader sense such perspective allows the research on the Didache to enter into the rich and fruitful stream of recent studies that aim at exploring the many identities existing in the Ancient Near East, in particular among Jews and Christians with their inner dialectics. This is the inaugural book in a series called Texts and Studies. The series will examine specific Jewish and Christian texts from the first and second centuries, offering English translations side-by-side with the Greek or Hebrew.
 

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Contents

Introduction
1
Judaism and Christian Origins
16
Studies on the Didache and on the Judaisms of the Didache
74
Chapter 2
113
Conclusion
141
Chapter 3
143
1112
162
1
168
Conclusion
186
Conclusion
219
Conclusions
263
Subjects
278
Copyright

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About the author (2004)

Marcello Del Verne is Professor of Early Christianity and History of Religions, University of Naples, Federico II, Italy.

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