Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Defining a Critical Method for Detecting Greco-Roman Allusions

So much work has been done on OT echoes in the NT, and several monographs have attempted to refine Richard Hays' 7 criteria for recognizing an echo (Echoes of Scripture in the Letters of Paul, 29-32; cf. Leroy Huizenga, The New Isaac, 61ff; Christopher Beetham, Echoes of Scripture in the Letter of Paul to the Colossians, ch. 2). But so little has been done in defining a critical methodology for detecting Greco-Roman allusions in Paul's letter corpus. I'm going to start blogging on this soon. I'm going to first define different categories for Greco-Roman allusions. The challenge right now is to develop the right terms or technical categories for defining the types of allusions Paul and other New Testament writers make in reference to Greco-Roman literature or even general encyclopedic knowledge that was shared between the author and his/her readers.

First up is what I would like to call "competitive acculturation," i.e., when Paul uses a word or phrase (e.g., εὐαγγέλιον) that has a technical use in the discourse of a particular political, social, or religious group (e.g., the imperial cult) in order to say that Christianity outdoes and out-competes the group in its own game (e.g., who is really the author of good news? Christ or Caesar).

However, right now, I am neck deep in grading final exams and final papers at North Park. I have a stack of exegesis papers to go through. Duty before pleasure, so I'm going to have to post on this later. MJL


  1. Looking forward to your next post! Congrats on your new blog!

  2. I appreciate the word of affirmation!