The Pastorals at SBL 2019

The program book for the 2019 SBL Annual Meeting reveals a robust selection of sessions related to the Pastorals, whether directly or indirectly. We’ve listed below pertinent sessions (alphabetically by presenter last name), with links to abstracts where available. Sessions which very directly engage the Pastorals are listed first, then a few sessions which have some pertinence for the letters but are not said to directly engage them.

Presentations directly related to the Pastorals

Jens Herzer, Universität Leipzig.
“Epicurus, Plutarch and Paul: The Philosophical Discourse on Public Life and the Transformation of Pauline Ethics in 1 Timothy.” (abstract)
Herzer has published prolifically on the Pastorals.

Christopher Hutson, Abilene Christian University
“Lifting the Yoke of Slavery: Infrapolitics and Advice to Enslaved Persons in the Pastoral Epistles.” (abstract)
Hutson’s Yale dissertation focused on the rhetoric of youth in the Pastorals; his roughly half-dozen essays on the letters have culminated this year in the volume on the Pastorals in the Paideia commentary series.

Donghyun Jeong, Emory University
“Ambiguous Prayers in 1 Timothy 2:1–2.” (abstract)

Lyn Kidson, Alphacrucis College
“Saving the Woman in 1 Timothy 2: Childbirth, Women’s Bodies, and the ‘Other Instruction.’” (abstract)
Kidson’s Macquarie dissertation focused on rhetorical strategies in 1 Timothy 1, and she has published other work on 1 Timothy. This session builds on her 2018 SBL presentation.

Myriam Klinker-De Klerck, Theologische Universiteit Kampen voor de Gereformeerde Kerken
“Lois, Eunice and Timothy. The Rhetorical Strategy in 2 Timothy in the Light of Social Exclusion of the First Christians.” (abstract)
Klinker-De Klerck’s published dissertation addressed ethics in 1 Timothy and Titus.

Andrew M. Langford, University of Oregon
“‘They pierced themselves with many pains’: Pain Experience and the Rhetoric of Self-Harm in 1 Timothy.” (abstract)
Langford’s recent University of Chicago dissertation examines the polemical use of contemporary philosophical and medical discourses in the Pastorals to stigmatize the opponents in the letters. He has previously presented on 1 Timothy at SBL.

Anna C. Miller, Xavier University
“The ‘Real Widow’ in the City: Widows, Public Space and Speech in 1 Timothy and the Acts of Thecla.” (abstract)
Miller has presented previously on the Pastorals at SBL.

W. Andrew Smith, Shepherds Theological Seminary and Steve Young, Shepherds Theological Seminary
“Great Expectations: Teststellen Efficacy for Byzantine Manuscripts of 1 Timothy.” (abstract)
Smith is presently working on the Pastorals in the Editio Critica Maior project.

Nebeyou Almeu Terefe, Wycliffe Ethiopia
“Some Notes on the Ge’ez/Ethiopic Manuscripts of 1 and 2 Timothy.” (abstract)
Terefe’s Addis Ababa University Ph.D. thesis is titled “Critical Edition of Pastoral Epistles with Their Andemta Tradition” and contributes to the textual history of Ethiopic biblical material.

James Buchanan Wallace, Christian Brothers University
“1 Timothy and Universal Salvation.” (abstract)

Tommy Wasserman, Ansgar Teologiske Høgskole and Conrad Thorup Elmelund, Københavns Universitet
“Second Timothy – When and Where? Text and Traditions in the Subscriptions.” (abstract)

Presentations indirectly related to the Pastorals

Jon-Paul Lapeña, Harvard Divinity School
“Contextualizing Paul’s Rhetoric of the μέθυσος: Attitudes Toward Drunkenness and its Stigma in the Early Imperial Period.” (abstract)
Though μέθυσος is not used in the Pastorals, this presentation likely has implications for the use of πάροινος in 1 Tim 3:3; Titus 1:7.

Troy W. Martin, Saint Xavier University
“Translating ὑποτάσσειν in the Petrine Station Code as Fitting In instead of Submission.” (abstract)
Martin has published on rhetoric in 1 Timothy and Titus. This presentation would have implications for the use of ὑποτάσσω in Titus 2:5, 9; 3:1.

Larry Perkins, Northwest Baptist Seminary, Langley, B.C. and Mr. Spencer Elliott, Trinity Western University.
“The Use of οἰκία/οἶκος in Greek Exodus: An Attempt to Understand Principles of Lexical Variation in Greek Exodus.” (abstract)
Perkins recently published the volume on the Pastorals in the BHGNT series. This presentation is pertinent to the Pastorals’ variance between οἶκος and οἰκία.

Richard A Rhodes, University of California-Berkeley
“Oikos, oikia and the Problem of Metonymy.” (abstract)
This presentation is pertinent to the Pastorals’ variance between οἶκος and οἰκία.

Tyler M. Schwaller, Wesleyan College (Macon, GA)
“White Fragility and Biblical Interpretation: The Case of Reading Paul on Slavery.” (abstract)
This presentation may have implications for reception history of 1 Tim 6:1-2; Titus 2:9-10.


Coming soon: Gerald Bray, The Pastoral Epistles, ITC

Media of The Pastoral Epistles: An International Theological Commentary

In an earlier post, we briefly mentioned Gerald Bray’s forthcoming volume on the Pastoral Epistles in the recently-begun International Theological Commentary (ITC) series. As the cover reveals, the ITC is a companion series to the well-known International Critical Commentary series, and like the ICC will cover both Old and New Testaments. Students of the Pastoral Epistles may rejoice that
the volume on these letters is one of the inaugural volumes in the ITC.

The publisher’s description page gives the release date as July 25, and Dr. Bray has confirmed this. He also provided a paragraph describing the volume, as follows:

“This commentary offers a verse-by-verse theological interpretation of the First and Second Epistles to Timothy and Titus. Bray reads the letters as authoritative Scripture, moving beyond questions of whether they are pseudonymous, and of whether or not they are post-Apostolic, looking closely at how they have been understood in the life of the Church. Bray engages with the history of commentary surrounding these letters, ranging from the Fathers of the Church to contemporary theology and exegesis. He reads the Epistles as the authoritative word from God to his people, and through his engagement with the history of interpretation shows the constant thread of witness and confession that unites believers across the ages. In so doing, Bray shows why the Pastoral Epistles have survived the passage of time and have retained the canonical authority that they have always enjoyed.”