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Moses’ Veil and the Glory of the New Covenant: The Exegetical Substructure of 2 Cor. 3:1–4:6

Moses’ Veil and the Glory of the New Covenant: The Exegetical Substructure of 2 Cor. 3:1–4:6

Carol Kern Stockhausen

| Pontifical Biblical Institute | 1989

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This study analyzes a single Pauline text of exceptional difficulty and importance, 2 Corinthians 3:1–4:6, from the point of view of its logical and literary structure as it can be discovered from the Apostle’s use and interpretation of a network of interrelated Old Testament texts. These scripture texts, recovered through Paul’s vocabulary, are linked and used by him according to exegetical methods common in his time. As his own exegesis is reappropriated in this study, the reader is able to see the mind of the Apostle at work in his own religious context. The origins of such fundamental Pauline theological themes as the new covenant in Christ, the gift of God’s spirit to a recreated people and the hardening of Israel into disbelief are explained through the creative interweaving of texts. Finally, the unity and authenticity of a much disputed Pauline text are reaffirmed in this study on literary and exegetical grounds. The text is discussed according to its two major traditional segments, 3:1–6 and 3:7–18, comprising the two major chapters of this work. An introduction prepares the reader for the methodological approach, exegetical criticism, taken in this book, and a conclusion interprets 2 Corinthians 4:1–6 in light of the new information provided by the present inquiry and discusses further with an index of Modern Authors and an Index of Scriptural References.