SNAPSHOT: “Come Out, My People!”, Howard-Brook

“Come Out, My People!” God’s Call out of Empire in the Bible and Beyond

From Publisher

Wes Howard-Brook presents the Bible as a struggle between two competing religions: not Judaism and Christianity, but the religion of creation versus the religion of empire. Throughout the Hebrew Scriptures, these two religions battled for the hearts and minds of the people in claiming radically divergent views of who YHWH is and what it looks like to be YHWH’s people. Though Jesus was killed by the upholders of empire, his resurrection was the definitive vindication of the religion of creation. As a consequence, those who follow his path can accept no violence or domination toward people or creation in his name. While many recent scholars have studies the imperial context of the New Testament, this is the first book to trace this theme throughout the entire Bible.

Contents

PART I IN THE BEGINNING

Introduction: “Is God on Our Side?” The Two Religions

  1. “Then God Said, ‘Let there be light!’” (Gen. 1) The Bible as Story and as History
  2. “By the Sweat of Your Face You Shall Eat Bread” (Gen. 2-3)
  3. “And He Built a City”

4. Making One’s Name Great “Let Us Make a Name for Ourselves”:

The Tower of Babel (Gen. 11)

“I Will Make Your Name Great”: YHWH’s Call to Abram to Come Out of Empire (Gen. 12)

5. The Well-Watered Plain of Sodom

Turning to Egypt for Food (Gen. 12)

Choosing for Oneself (Gen. 13-14)

Entertaining Angels… or Not (Gen. 15-19)

6. Fulfilling YHWH’s Promises

7. The Price of Settling Too Soon

PART II FROM EXODUS TO EXILE: THE TWO RELIGIONS IN CONFLICT AMID GOD’S PEOPLE

8. Entering the “Exit Story”

9. Solomon’s Wisdom

10. Finding the “Way Out” Jeroboam’s Rebellion Birthing Israel, the People of YHWH The Revenge of the Shilonites

11. Kissing Calves

12. “I Have Found the Book of the Torah in the House of YHWH!”

13. What Was “Israel” before the Monarchy?

PART III FROM EXILE TO THE EVE OF EASTER: FALLEN JERUSALEM, FALLEN BABYLON 14. The First Fall of Jerusalem: Jeremiah and Ezekiel

15. “In the Wilderness, Prepare the Way of YHWH”: Envisioning a Way out of Exile

16. The Struggle over Jerusalem’s Restoration

17. Seeking “Wisdom” under Greek Rule, Part One: The Ptolemaic Empire

18. Seeking “Wisdom” under Greek Rule, Part Two: The Seleucid Empire

19. From Greece to Rome: Longing for God’s Reign to Come

PART IV FROM EASTER TO THE ESCHATON: JESUS’ FULFILLMENT OF THE RELIGION OF CREATION AND DEFEAT OF THE RELIGION OF EMPIRE

20. Enlightenment and Empire: Reading Jesus from the Locus Imperii in the Light of the Resurrection

21. The Gospel of Jesus Christ against the Gospel of Empire

22. “The Beginning of the Good News of Jesus Christ”: The Gospel of Mark

23. “Strive First for the Kingdom of God”: Matthew’s Gospel

24. Proclaiming Jubilee: Luke’s Gospel and Acts of the Apostles

25. “Savior of the World”: The Gospel of John

26. “Christ the Power of God and the Wisdom of God”: Paul’s Counter-imperial Gospel

27. “Come Out, My People”: The Book of Revelation

Conclusion: Hearing and Responding to God’s Call: “Come Out, My People!”

EMPIRE BAPTISED

Introduction Why Should We Care about Ancient History? The Question of “Writing Christian History” and How This Book Is Organized A Personal Note

1. The Roman Imperial Context and the “Religion of Empire”

2. Alexandria and Carthage: Urban Laboratories for Brewing “Christianity”

3. How Should Christians Read the Hebrew Scriptures?

4. “Christianity” Moves Closer to the “Religion of Empire” (150– 220 CE)

5. “Christianity” up to and in Response to the Decian Persecution (220– 255 CE)

6. “Christianity” Becomes the Official Religion of the Empire: The Roman Empire in the Late Third Century

7. “Christianity” Embraces Empire: After Constantine: The Roman Empire in the Late Fourth and Early Fifth Centuries

No Notes

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