If you are looking for a quality textbook on Paul, then you should consider this second edition of “Rediscovering Paul” by David B. Capes, Rodney Reeves, and E. Randolph Richards. It addresses enough of modern scholarly debates on Paul to please students while being well-written enough to please pastors or Bible students.
I felt that chapter 1 about placing Paul in his times and world was worth the price of the book. It read so well, and so engages the reader, that it was a pure joy. Some works that explain to us how we err in viewing Paul through Western eyes are so dry, but that could not be said of this one.
The next chapter addresses what the authors call the Christophany. Some modern scholars almost paint Paul and Christ as rivals, but these authors do a good job of making them friends. Still, they reference and interact with some of those wild scholarly theories. In fairness, as a textbook they had no choice.
Chapter 3 looks at Paul as a letter writer and contains some interesting information I had not seen anywhere else. The next four chapters consider Galatians, the Thessalonian letters, the Corinthian letters, and Romans. The other Pauline letters are addressed in chapters 8 and 9. The final chapters consider Paul’s theology, his legacy, and then viewing his letters in modern times.
There are some maps, a very helpful glossary for students, a lengthy bibliography, and several helpful indices at the end of this attractive hardback.
There were some capitulations to some of the newer scholarly conclusions that I couldn’t agree with, but overall this is a quite helpful book. It succeeds on every level as a textbook, but as a pastor I’d label it an asset to the rest of us too. It’s engaging writing style was its best asset. Some of the interesting asides covering no more than a page or so were also appreciated. I warmly recommend this volume.
I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.