First Corinthians 1-4 in Light of Jewish Wisdom Traditions. Christ, Wisdom, and Spirituality

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This book examines the influence of Jewish wisdom traditions on Pauls thought and theology. It also evaluates background sources and contains an excellent bibliography on wisdom literature.


"Noteworthy is the attention given to the social dimensions of the wisdom tradition and Paul's focus on the proper exercise of wisdom in the social relations of the Corinthian community. The book is highly recommended to theological students and scholars for a sound, balanced treatment of the influence of Jewish wisdom traditions upon Paul's thought in 1 Cor 1:18-4:21." - M. Robert Mansfield

"Lamp writes in the restrained, thoughtful, and careful fashion of that model exemplified by those masters of twentieth-century British, biblical scholarship: H. H. Rowley, F. F. Bruce, and C. F. D. Moule. Readers will find thorough-going documentation (including copious notes and bibliographies), equitable consideration of alternative interpretations, and, in the author's words, minimalist, though clear, conclusions." - James A. Hewett

"Lamp seeks to fill this lacuna, discovering what notions of sophia were most likely present within Paul’s first Corinthian correspondence. Unlike James Davis’s work on sophia in 1 Cor. (1984), Lamp focuses not on the ideology of sophia among Paul’s opponents but on the vibrant Jewish wisdom tradition of the day. This approach proves more beneficial, as Lamp works to find what Paul is stating positively about wisdom, not merely mining out of the text the heterodoxy that this letter is, in part, written to combat. To this end, Lamp rightly notes that the wisdom tradition is present in a variety of elements in Jewish life, and that it was this dynamic that allowed their faith to flourish in diverse contexts." - Cullen Tanner,London School of Theology

Table of Contents

1. Introduction
2. An Overview of Israel’s Wisdom Tradition: Toward an Understanding of Wisdom
Literary Features of Wisdom
Wisdom in the Religion of Israel
Wisdom in Postbiblical Judaism
3. The Personification of Wisdom In Jewish Thought
4. Wisdom among the Corinthians: City of Corinth and its People
Paul and the Corinthians; Wisdom of the Corinthians
Jewish Wisdom Speculations
Greco-Roman Rhetoric
5. Christ, Wisdom, and Spirituality: Jesus and Wisdom in Early Christian Thought
The Text 6. Summary and Conclusions
Appendix: Wisdom Categories and Christological Predicates
Index of Modern Authors
Index of Ancient Texts Cited

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