Social Scientific Models for Interpreting the Bible
John J. Pilch
Fourteen members of The Context Group honor Bruce J. Malina and his scholarship in this volume by following his consistent example of developing or using explicit social scientific models to interpret documents from the ancient Mediterranean world. Ordinary features of that cultural world such as gossip, reciprocity, a pervasive military presence, the power of women, and becoming a follower of Jesus stand out with greater clarity in the Bible when a reader understands the cultural matrix in which such social dynamics function.
These essays reflect The Context Group’s more than twenty years of collaborative experience in researching the cultural context of the Bible. New insights are built on the solidly established foundations of their earlier cross-cultural studies.
Readers will find the individual essays enlightening and challenging. Taken as a whole they form a valuable resource and a stimulating and helpful aid to further study.