A Few of My Favorite Books from Seminary
I’ve got a pretty intense couple of weeks at work ahead of me, so I wanted to take it easy. At the same time, I don’t want to leave my readers hanging, so this week I wanted to discuss some of my favorite books I was assigned in Seminary. I’ve written a bit about my Seminary experiences before, but one of my favorite things about it was all the great reading. Here are the books that, years later, I still keep on my shelf.
Apocalypse Against Empire by Anathea E. Portier-Young
Portier-Young’s work informs a lot of my own thinking about Apocalypse as a biblical genre. Her book focuses primarily on Jewish apocalypses, particularly the Book of Daniel, the Apocalypse of Weeks and the Book of Dreams, not engaging with Revelation directly. She places these in the context of Seleucid, or Greek, persecution of Jewish religious practices and proposes that they represent rebellious and revolutionary literature, meant to convey subversive messages in a cultural code that would go over the heads of the occupying soldiers. It’s an intriguing and informative read that provides the tools to engage with all kinds of apocalyptic literature, framing it primarily as a literature of resistance.
Eros and the Christ by David Frederickson
This books represents my first encounter with Fortress Press’ “Paul In Critical Context” series, which is among my favorites in academic theology. David Frederickson is a Pauline scholar with a significant background in post-structural and post-modern theory, and he is also the guy who taught me Greek.
His book focuses on the self-emptying of Christ discussed in Philippians 2, and on the hymn featured in that chapter. Frederickson explains the literary genre of erotic poetry in the Greek World and the ways in which this…