The Old Testament Pseudepigrapha

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James H. Charlesworth
Hendrickson Publishers, 2010 - Religion - 2104 pages
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Biblical authors, like any other authors, were dependant on a vast array of literary sources from the ancient world. Many of these documents are tragically lost, but what remains provides insight into the voluminous, fascinating, complex, and dynamic literary world that shaped the expressions of faith found in the Old and New Testaments.

James H. Charlesworth's classic 2 volume compendium provides these texts in a two-volume compendium entitled The Old Testament Pseudepigrapha. Originally published by Yale University Press, the leading critical translation of these ancient texts is now available from Hendrickson Publishers in paperback--and at a fraction of its original price.Volume 1 contains Apocalyptic Literature and Testaments that reflect a wildly varying trend towards apocalyticism in ancient Judaism. Yet, despite the existence of this movement on the fringe of Judaism, the movement maintained a definitive influence, and produced amazing, if not disturbing, literary expressions.

There can be no doubt that these writings shaped the apocalyptic imagination of the biblical authors and helped to shape the way early Christians interpreted the promised return of Jesus Christ.If the contents of Volume 1 were not enigmatic enough, Volume 2 is, arguably, even more cryptic in its contents featuring expansions of the Hebrew Bible---legends and wisdom literature, prayers and psalms, and fragments of lost works.

While these works are not so imaginative as Volume 1 they do much to aid our understanding how the religious life of Judaism was lived and practiced in the ancient world, after the Old Testament closed, and Christianity began to emerge. As a unit, these two volumes, like no other collection of texts available, illuminates the literary, social, religious, and theological context in which the Bible was shaped. They are an indispensable tool providing great insight into how religion functioned and how it was expressed in both official and unofficial circles.
 

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Excellent Work, Caution for Christians

User Review  - jcncdegov - Christianbook.com

Let me clarify what recommendation I would make. I would recommend this work to those that are ready to read it, but as a pastor, I would hesitate to suggest it to the average "pew-filler." This is ... Read full review

Review: The Old Testament Pseudepigrapha: Apocalyptic Literature and Testaments, Two Volume Set

User Review  - cbcarter - Christianbook.com

for those who want accurate translations of the pseudographia these are they. Not books to buy to browse threw. Not easy reads. For the serious student and researcher of 2tp writings. These are invaluable. and what a price. just, don't walk, and get these Read full review

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About the author (2010)

James H. Charlesworth is the George L. Collord Professor of New Testament Language and Literature and director of the Dead Sea Scrolls Project at Princeton Theological Seminary, New Jersey. He also directs the Syrus Sinaiticus Project at St. Catherine's Monastery in Sinai. Charlesworth is a world-renowned translator, particularly of pseudepigraphical material, and the author of "Jesus and the Dead Sea Scrolls, The Bible and the Dead Sea Scrolls, The Serpent: A Symbol of Life or Death?" and "The Historical Jesus.

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