My attitude toward Paul has always been somewhat mixed. On the one hand, I found Paul to be a source of inspiration, with passages that spoke clearly of God's unconditional love and grace toward sinners and his commitment to save any and all who accept his gift through faith. But then, there was what I called Paul the flip-flopper. In one place he would affirm women as fellow laborers and leaders in the church, even as leading apostles; but in another place he would tell women to shut up and be silent in church. If they have questions, they should ask their husbands at home. In one place, he would say that in Christ there is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, that all are equal in Christ Jesus. (There is no place for hierarchies in the church!) But in another place he tells wives to submit to their husbands and slaves to obey their masters. (Hierarchies appear right at home in the church!) I would find myself saying, "Alright, Paul, which is it?" It seemed at times as though Paul had a split personality!
Utilizing current biblical, historical, and literary scholarship, The First Paul by Marcus Borg and John Dominic Crossan helped answer these questions. It introduced me to a Paul that I can truly call a kindred spirit, someone whose values align with my own, someone I would actually like to have known had I lived during his time.
Class Member Roger Domeny, M.Div., RPT
ARCHIVE BOOK REVIEWS
Centennial Complex of Loma Linda University Sabbath Morning 10:30-12:30