Paul and the Law: What He Does Not Say




Published Date: 24 Oct 2012

Presentation Date: 11 Apr 2014

File: Download File "Journal for the Study of the New Testament-2010-Rosner-405-19"

As Betz observed in 1979, Paul never says that Christians are supposed to ‘do’ the Torah. This article seeks to develop the argument of omission in relation to Paul and the law. What else does he not say? According to Rom. 2.17-29, Jews ‘rely on’ the law, ‘boast’ in the law, know God’s will through the law, are educated in the law, have light, knowledge and truth because of the law, are to ‘do’, ‘observe’ and ‘keep’ the law, on occasions ‘transgress’ the law, and possess the law as a ‘written code’. Not only does Paul not say these things about Christians vis-à-vis the law, he shifts the focus from the law to something else using the same words and concepts. Such omission and substitution suggests that the Law of  Moses holds a very different place for Jews than for Christians in Paul’s thought.

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