Wiles introduces Paul's theology by helping readers bridge the gaps of time and place between twenty-first-century Western readers and the first-century Mediterranean apostle. Writing with undergraduates in mind, Wiles especially relies upon solid interpretation coupled with modern analogies and engages the reader in a meaningful way. Taking her cue from the notion that what may be familiar may not necessarily be understood, Wiles shows how assuming knowledge of Paul's thought world and language leads to confusion and misunderstanding. Thus "familiar" terms such as righteousness, sin, law, and grace take on a new dimension under Wiles's guiding hand. Paul's experience of God is also factored in as a very real dimension of his relationship with God. Wiles thinks once we are able to appreciate Paul in his own context, then Paul's writings offer lessons about human existence for believer and nonbeliever alike.
Virginia Wiles is associate professor of New Testament at New Brunswick Theological Seminary. Besides writing this volume, she has also edited, with Alexandra Brown and Graydon Snyder, Putting Body and Soul Together: Essays in Honor of Robin Scroggs.
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