The Subject of the New Creation: Transformation & Selfhood in Paul’s Letters translation missing: zh.hyrax.visibility.files_restricted.text

Carr, Frederick David (Summer 2019)

Permanent URL: https://etd.library.emory.edu/concern/etds/z316q268s?locale=zh
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Abstract

In this study, I argue that Paul, like others in his milieu, employs “transformation discourse” to offer models of selfhood to audiences who are in new and changing circumstances. Specifically, I argue that, for those who understand themselves as integrated into the context of Christ’s body, Paul presents transformation—or becoming—as a defining characteristic of Christian selfhood. This study’s methodological approach is analytical, comparative, and synthetic. It is analytical in that I first examine Paul’s diverse references to human transformation in conversation with modern and postmodern theories of subjectivity (chs. 2–4). The study is comparative in that I contextualize Paul’s discourse among a variety of ancient writings, including classical mythology, Greco-Roman moral philosophy, the OT/LXX, texts from the Dead Sea Scrolls, and Jewish writings from the Mediterranean Diaspora (chs. 5–6). Finally, it is synthetic in that I return to Paul in light my findings in order to consider how he presents models of subjectivity to early Christians who found themselves in new and changing circumstances (ch. 7). With its multi-dimensional approach, this work provides a conceptual map of human transformation in Paul’s epistles, locates Pauline notions of selfhood in the landscape of ancient perspectives, and offers a distinct understanding of selfhood to ongoing debates in Pauline anthropology. 

Table of Contents

Chapter 1 The Subject of the New Creation 1

1.1 Paul & Human Transformation ...................................................................................................... 3

1.2 Paul, Selfhood, and the Self .......................................................................................................... 8

1.3 Transformation Discourse in Paul’s Letters...................................................................................13

1.4 Transformation Discourse in Pauline Scholarship ....................................................................... 20

1.5 Methodology and Thesis .............................................................................................................. 43

Chapter 2 Mapping Transformation Discourse in Galatians & Philippians 47

1 Human Transformation in Galatians ......................................................................................................... 48

1.1 Galatians 2:18–20 ........................................................................................................................ 48

1.2 Galatians 3:23–29 ........................................................................................................................ 59

1.3 Galatians 4:1–11 .......................................................................................................................... 68

1.4 Galatians 4:19 .............................................................................................................................. 77

1.5 Galatians 5:24 .............................................................................................................................. 82

1.6 Galatians 6:14–15 ........................................................................................................................ 88

1.7 Conclusion: Transformation & Selfhood in Galatians ................................................................... 94

2 Human Transformation in Philippians .................................................................................... 97

2.1 Philippians 3:10–11....................................................................................................................... 97

2.2 Philippians 3:21............................................................................................................................110

2.3 Conclusion: Transformation & Selfhood in Philippians ............................................................ 119

Chapter 3 Mapping Transformation Discourse in 1–2 Corinthians 122

1 Human Transformation in 1 Corinthians ................................................................................ 122

1.1 1 Corinthians 13:8–12 ................................................................................................................. 122

1.2 1 Corinthians 15:35–57 ............................................................................................................... 129

1.3 Conclusion: Transformation Discourse in 1 Corinthians................................................................139

2 Human Transformation in 2 Corinthians .............................................................................. 141

2.1 2 Corinthians 3:18 ....................................................................................................................... 141

2.2 2 Corinthians 4:16–18 ................................................................................................................. 154

2.3 2 Corinthians 5:1–5 ..................................................................................................................... 165

2.3 2 Corinthians 5:14–15 ................................................................................................................. 174

2.4 2 Corinthians 5:17 ....................................................................................................................... 180

2.5 2 Corinthians 11:13–15 ............................................................................................................... 189

2.6 Conclusion: Transformation & Selfhood in 2 Corinthians ............................................................ 195

Chapter 4 Mapping Transformation Discourse in Romans 197

1.1 Romans 6:1–11 ........................................................................................................................... 197

1.2 Romans 7:1–13 ........................................................................................................................... 210

1.3 Romans 12:1–2............................................................................................................................ 225

1.4 Conclusion: Transformation Discourse in Romans...................................................................... 236

Paul’s Transformation Discourse: Conclusions 238 

Chapter 5 Human Transformation in Greco-Roman Antiquity 241

1 Transformation & Selfhood in Greco-Roman Literature .................................................... 242

1.1 Boeus and Nicander in Antoninus Liberalis, Metamorphoses .................................................... 243

1.2 Ovid’s Metamorphoses ............................................................................................................... 248

1.3 Apuleius’ The Golden Ass .......................................................................................................... 259

1.4 Conclusion: Transformation in Greco-Roman Literature .............................................................270

2 Transformation & Selfhood in Greco-Roman Moral Philosophy ....................................... 272

2.1 Pre-Socratic Philosophers and Plato ...........................................................................................272

2.2 Aristotle ....................................................................................................................................... 276

2.3 Stoic Philosophers: Epictetus and Marcus Aurelius .................................................................... 279

2.3.1 Moral Transformation in Epictetus .............................................................................................280

2.3.2 Transformation in Marcus Aurelius ............................................................................................283

2.4 Plutarch: A View from Middle Platonism........................................................................................287

2.5 Conclusion: Transformation & Selfhood in Greco-Roman Antiquity ............................................ 292

Chapter 6 Human Transformation in Jewish Antiquity 294

1 Human Transformations for Divine Purposes ...................................................................... 295

1.1 “You will become another Person:” The Transformation of Saul in 1 Samuel 10 ........................ 296

1.2 Functional Transformations in Pseudo Philo’s Liber Antiquitatum Biblicarum.............................. 300

1.3 The Temporary Transformation of Nebuchadnezzar’s Mind......................................................... 305

1.4 Varieties of Change in Joseph and Aseneth................................................................................. 310

1.5 Summary: Functional Transformation in Jewish Antiquity ........................................................... 317

2      Moral Transformation in Ancient Jewish Writings................................................ 318

2.1   The Inscription of the Heart in Jeremiah 31:31–34............................................................................... 318

2.2   The Creation of a New Moral Self in Ezekiel...........................................................................................325

2.3   Prayers for a New Heart in Psalm 51...................................................................................................... 330

2.4 Moral Transformation in the Dead Sea Scrolls: 4QBarkhi Nafshi and the Hodayot................................. 334 

2.6   From Jealousy to Sympathy: Moral Transformation in the Testament of Simeon................................. 340

2.7   Summary: Moral Transformation in Jewish Antiquity........................................................................... 343

3       Conclusion............................................................................................................................................ 345

Chapter 7 Transformation & Selfhood in Paul’s Letters 347

1 Key Features of Paul’s Transformation Discourse ......................................................................... 348

2 Paul in His Milieu ............................................................................................................................ 350

3 Pauline Transformation Discourse: A Final Assessment................................................................. 359

4 Selfhood: Paul’s Convictions about the Human Person.................................................................. 362

Bibliography 370 

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