Wednesday, 22 December 2010

Bible and Justice: Ancient Texts, Modern Challenges

I've just heard that this book, in which I have a chapter, is now published:

Bible and Justice: Ancient Texts, Modern Challenges 
Edited by Matthew J.M. Coomber

You can buy your own copy here.

This book had its origins in the Sheffield conference of the same title, held in 2008. It promises to be an exciting and challenging read.

The blurb from the publisher is as follows:

The Bible contains a variety of passages that defend the poor and champion the cause of the oppressed, but are these ancient texts able to find a voice in confronting injustice in the modern world? Bible and Justice, a selection of papers compiled from the proceedings of the 2008 Conference on Bible and Justice at the University of Sheffield, addresses this question. The authors gathered within this volume explore the various ways in which the Bible might effectively confront an array of human rights, poverty and environmental concerns, while considering the difficulties that arise when ancient concepts of justice are applied to modern socio-political ideals. Written to be accessible to those outside the field of biblical studies, Bible and Justice will be a valuable resource for both academics and non-academics alike.


Part 1:Challenges and Understanding of Bible and Justice
1. On the Genesis of the Alliance between the Bible and Rights
Yvonne Sherwood, University of Glasgow

2. Rough Justice?
Philip Davies, University of Sheffield

3. Is the Belief in Human Rights either Biblical or Useful?
John Sandys-Wunsch,

4. Jesus: The Justice of God
Stanley Hauerwas, Duke University Divinity School

Part 2: Uses and Approaches to Bible and Justice
5. Justice and Violence in the Priestly Utopia
Walter J. Houston, Mansfield College, Oxford

6. A Signs Source: Approaching Deaf Biblical Interpretation
Louise J. Lawrence, University of Exeter

7. From a Reconstruction and Development Programme (RDP) of the Economy to the RDP of the Soul: Public Realm Biblical Appropriation in Postcolonial South Africa
Gerald West, University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa

Part 3: Prospects for Applications of Bible and Justice
8. The Old Testament and the Environment
J.W. Rogerson, University of Sheffield

9. Ecojustice in the Bible? Pauline Contributions to an Ecological Theology
David G. Horrell, University of Exeter

10. Can the Book of Revelation be a Gospel for the Environment?
Simon P. Woodman, South Wales Baptist College

11. ‘I Have Always Relied on the Kindness of Strangers’: Hospitality and the Geneva Conventions of Ancient Israel
Diana Lipton, King’s College London

12. Prophets to Profits: Ancient Judah and Corporate Globalization
Matthew J.M. Coomber

'This is a truly major contribution to discourse about the Bible and Ethics. To date the discussion has been dominated by simplistically polarized positions: on the one hand, the assumption that the Bible supports justice today without equivocation; on the other hand, the assumption that the outdated ethical views of the Bible are inapplicable today. The present volume confronts this dichotomy head-on by showing how the Bible may indeed contribute to efforts at social justice today once the difficulties in bridging the temporal and sociopolitical gap that separates us from the biblical world is taken fully into account. This volume coincides with the newly established Center and Library for the Bible and Social Justice in the United States which is committed to a critical sharing of the biblical imperatives for social justice with scholars, clergy, laity, and especially social activists and educators.'
Norman K. Gottwald, Professor Emeritus of Biblical Studies, New York Theological Seminary, and author of The Tribes of Yahweh

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