This is a new introduction to the Catholic Epistles . This book introduces the Epistles and discusses the different interpretive approaches which have been used to gain a clearer understanding of them. An introductory chapter defines the Epistles and describes the history of their canization, following chapters are devoted to each of the texts with each chapter including: historical-cultural background; the social-scientific context; social-rhetorical purposes; narrative discourse; postcolonial and feminist insights; and, finally theological perspectives. At the end of each chapter there are suggestions for further reading and a list of reflection questions. Several chapters include a section or two considering a particular interpretive issue especially relevant to the particular text. After taking up each text, Lockett considers again whether the Epistles are a unified whole or to be heard as individual voices. Here the book interacts with some of the ideas of Rob Wall and David Nienhuis regarding the various thematic/theological connections running through the texts. A final chapter takes up the relationship between the Pauline Epistles and the Catholic Epistles within the New Testament. These guides have been developed for those taking a course in biblical studies in theological or ministerial education, and are designed to introduce the reader to the various approaches to the study of the bible. The series is ecumenical, and all the writers are professionally engaged in the teaching of biblical studies.
Darian Lockett is Assistant Professor of New Testament, Talbot School of Theology, Biola University, CA, USA