Unlike the usual historical, exegetical, or theological commentaries, this rich and engrossing work assembles and catalogs the pertinent values, conflicts, and mores of ancient Mediterranean culture. Its Gospel outline, detailed textual notes, and "reading scenarios" bring life and light to the social circumstances the Gospel text relates about childhood, money, divorce, military service, farming, family life, cities, demons, patronage, and a host of other aspects of the ancient world. In many ways, the authors disclose, the Fourth Gospel addresses an alienated anti-society, fundamentally at odds with the predominant culture. With its format, charts and photos, this social-science commentary is the ideal companion for the study of the Fourth Gospel.
"This is a splendid guidebook through the dense language of John's Gospel. The authors unmask new depths of meaning for any who puzzle over the Fourth Gospel. It is going to be a very important book." — Robert Kysar, Professor of Preaching and New Testament, Candler School of Theology, Emory University
"This indispensable guide presents the Johannine reality in its first-century perspective. It is the best attempt yet to locate John within a specific cultural complex of meanings, and in the same accessible style that characterized the author's previous volume, Social-Science Commentary on the Synoptic Gospels." — Carolyn Osiek, Professor of New Testament, Chicago Theological Seminary
Bruce J. Malina is Professor of Theology at Creighton University, Omaha, Nebraska. He is co-author of Social-Science Commentary on the Gospel of John (1998), and Social-Science Commentary on the Synoptic Gospels (Fortress Press, 1992), and author of The Genre and Message of Revelation.
Richard L. Rohrbaugh is Paul S. Wright Professor of Christian Studies at Lewis and Clark College (Portland, Oregon). He is co-author, with Malina, of Social-Science Commentary on the Gospel of John (Fortress Press, 1998).
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