Few Christian writings have had the world-changing impact of St Paul’s epistles to the churches, and yet from the very beginning these works proved themselves to be tricky texts. The Second Letter of Peter, commenting about them, says: “There are some things in them that are hard to understand” (2 Pet 3:16). Indeed! To this day many issues of their interpretation remain highly contested. In this book, Anthony Thiselton grasps the nettle and examines forty puzzling passages from Paul’s epistles. He considers the various scholarly proposals about their meaning and offers his own reflections in the hope of dispersing fog and shedding light, and of expounding a coherent and self-consistent Paul.
This is an exhilarating and infuriating book by Tony Thiselton. It is exhilarating because he does not shy away from many of the most troubling passages in the Apostle Paul’s letters, but infuriating because Thiselton cannot easily or predictably be put in a box regarding his conclusions. In his inimitable style, Thiselton takes each passage and explains the issues, weighs the options, and makes his proposals for others to judge for themselves. Many readers are bound to find this a very helpful book written by one of our senior Pauline scholars.
—Stanley E. Porter, President, McMaster Divinity College
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