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Rabbi Paul

Kenneth Wapner

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Rabbi Paul: An Intellectual Biography

Bruce Chilton’s revisionist biography of the passionately Jewish man who shaped early Christianity

(Doubleday, 2004).

Wapner’s roles:

• Proposal development and writing • Editing

From the Acknowledgments:

“As in the case of Rabbi Jesus, I have particularly to thank Kenneth Wapner. It is amazing how many

different ways you can say something you know, only to have it completely befuddle the reader. Ken

continues to stay on my case; I remain a willing and lumbering patient under the hands of his

physiotherapy in prose.”

• Optioned for film.

“Paul thus emerges as a shaman or spirit guide, a "master preacher [and] oral poet" whose

teachings about the spiritual life in Christ spurred the growth of early Christianity…[Chilton’s] inviting

prose, ability to recreate the cultural contexts of Paul's life and deep affection for the Apostle bring

new life to a tale that has been told many times before.”

-Publisher’s Weekly

“Chilton does readers a real service by explaining the evolution of these churches and the intricate

religious politics that entangled them. The book not only does a credible job of deciphering the

various positions of the nascent Christian movement vis-a-vis traditional Judaism but also offers

revealing portrayals of Paul's rivals, Peter and James the Just. Getting a handle on the quixotic Paul

is a monumental job, but Chilton hangs on quite well, speculating only occasionally and clearly

identifying the contradictions in Paul's theology.”

-Booklist

 

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