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Christ's First Theologian
The Shape of Paul’s Thought
For half a century Leander Keck thought, taught, and wrote about the New Testament. He first served as a Professor of New Testament at Vanderbilt Divinity School and Emory University’s Candler School of Theology before becoming Dean and Professor of Biblical Theology at Yale Divinity School. Keck’s lifelong work on Jesus and Paul was a catalyst for the emerging discussions of New Testament Christology and Pauline theology in the Society of Biblical Literature and the Studiorum Novi Testamenti Societas. Keck wrote a staggering number of now industry-standard articles on the New Testament. Here, they are all collected for the first time. In Christ's First Theologian and Why Christ Matters, readers will discover how Keck gave new answers to old questions even as he carefully reframed old answers into new questions. Keck’s work is a treasure trove of historical, exegetical, and theological interpretation.
PART I. ENCOUNTERING THE APOSTLE
1. Images of Paul in the New Testament
2. Paul the Jew
3. The Quest for Paul’s Pharisaism
4. The Jewish Paul among the Gentiles
5. The Problem of Paul’s Continuing Jewishness
PART II. ENGAGING THE APOSTLE’S THOUGHT
6. Paul and Apocalyptic Theology
7. Paul as Thinker
8. The Logic of Paul’s Soteriology
9. Paul’s Understanding of Freedom
10 The Accountable Self
11. God the Other, Who Acts Otherwise
12. Justification of the Ungodly and Ethics
PART III. EXPLORATIONS IN ROMANS
13. What Makes Romans Tick?
14. Good News for Us Gentiles
15. Pathos in Romans?
16. The Post-Pauline Interpretation of Jesus’ Death in Romans 5:6-7
17. The Absent Good (Romans 7:18a)
PART IV. ENGAGED BY THE APOSTLE
18. What to Do with Paul?
19. Is Matthew Arnold Also among the Prophets?
20. What If Paul Is Right?
21. Faith Seeking Canonical Understanding
“Independent thinking, sound judgment, generous criticism, theological acuity”
—Matthew V. Novenson, Lecturer in New Testament and Christian Origins, School of Divinity, University of Edinburgh
“Decades long in the making…to be welcomed by all”
—M. Eugene Boring, I. Wylie Briscoe Professor of New Testament, Emeritus, Brite Divinity School, Texas Christian University
“High caliber…enduring quality”
—Frank J. Matera, Professor Emeritus, The Catholic University of America
“Stellar contributions from one of the outstanding New Testament scholars of the last half-century”
—Beverly Gaventa, Distinguished Professor of New Testament, Baylor University
“Keck’s incisive, magisterial essays are essential reading for all who want to understand New Testament criticism in the twentieth century: its findings, its foibles, and its future prospects.”
—Richard B. Hays, Dean and George Washington Ivey Professor of New Testament, Duke Divinity School
Leander E. Keck is Winkley Professor Emeritus of Biblical Theology at Yale Divinity School.