By Naomi Koltun-Fromm
In Hermeneutics of Holiness , Naomi Koltun-Fromm examines the traditional nexus of holiness and sexuality and explores its roots within the biblical texts in addition to its manifestations all through historic and late-ancient Judaism and early Syriac Christianity. within the method, she tells the tale of ways the biblical notions of "holy individual" and "holy neighborhood" got here to be outlined by way of the sexual and marriage practices of varied interpretive groups in overdue antiquity.
Koltun-Fromm seeks to provide an explanation for why sexuality, particularly sexual restraint, turned a main demarcation of sacred group limitations between Jews and Christians in fourth-century Persian-Mesopotamia. She charts 3 basic manifestations of holiness: holiness ascribed, holiness completed, and holiness bought via ritual purity. Hermeneutics of Holiness lines the improvement of those 3 techniques, from their starting place within the biblical texts to the second one Temple literature (both Jewish and Christian) to the Syriac Christian and rabbinic literature of the fourth century. In so doing, this publication establishes the significance of biblical interpretation for overdue historical Jewish and Christian practices, the centrality of holiness as a class for self-definition, and the connection of fourth-century asceticism to biblical texts and interpretive history.
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