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Jeremiah, Writings

(455 words)

Author(s): Schaller, Berndt
[German Version] I. Epistle of Jeremiah – II. Paraleipomena Jeremiou I. Epistle of Jeremiah The Epistle of Jeremiah (‘Επίστολη ᾿Ιερεμίου/ Epístolē Ieremíou, Epistula Jeremiae, Ep Jer) purports to be a copy of a letter sent by the prophet Jeremiah to the exiles in Babylon (Babylonian Exile). The Greek letter, probably composed originally in Hebrew or Aramaic between 330 and 180, is treated by the Septuagint as an independent literary entity; the Vulgate instead integrates it into the book of Baruch as ch. 6. Closely …

Jeremias, Joachim

(347 words)

Author(s): Schaller, Berndt
[German Version] (Sep 20, 1900, Dresden – Sep 6, 1979, Tübingen). Jeremias earned his Dr.phil. in 1922, his Lic.theol. in 1923, and gained his Habilitation in New Testament at Leipzig in 1925. During his teaching career, he was tutor at the Theological Seminary of the Brethren in Herrnhut (1922; Bohemian and Moravian Brethren: II), lecturer at the Herder Institute in Riga (1924), associate professor and director of the Institutum Judaicum in Berlin (1928), professor at Greifswald (1929) and Göttingen (1935) before becoming emeritus in 1968. Jeremias was one of the outstanding…


(9,075 words)

Author(s): Dan, Joseph | Schäfer, Peter | Schaller, Berndt | Thierfelder, Jörg | Frey, Christofer
[German Version] I. Definitions and Problems - II. Greco-Roman Antiquity- III. New Testament (Primitive and Early Christianity) - IV. Christian Antiquity to the Beginning of the MiddleAges - V. The Middle Ages and the Early Modern Period - VI. German Anti-Semitism in Recent History - VII. Systematic Theology I. Definitions and Problems The term “anti-Semitism” in its narrowest sense relates to a racist ideology that emerged in France and Germany in the last decades of the 19th century and de…


(1,285 words)

Author(s): Jacobs, Martin | Wilke, Carsten | Schaller, Berndt
[German Version] I. Terminology The Hebrew title רַבִּי/ rabbî is derived from the nominalized adjective רַב/ rab, “great, of high rank,” which in postbiblical Hebrew took on the meaning “master” (Rav) in contrast to a slave or student/disciple ( m. Sukk. 2:9; m. Giṭ. 4:4; m. ʾAbot 1:3). The honorific rabbi (“my master/teacher”) became a title, associated with the names of Palestinian men of learning (e.g. Rabbi Akiba ben Joseph), while Rav was used for Babylonian rabbis. Rabbi is also found as a name for Judah ha-Nasi. The Aramaic form rabban (“our master”) is associated with some…

Christian-Jewish Cooperation

(603 words)

Author(s): Schaller, Berndt
[German Version] From the days of the Early Church, relations between Christianity and Judaism were dominated for the most part by theological hostility and practical enmity (Anti-Semitism/Anti-Judaism). The relationship was marked by contempt and persecution on the part of Christians, aversion and resistance on the part of Jews (Judaism and Christianity). Before the 19th century, only occasional encounters questioned the traditional antagonism and emphasized matters in…

Judaism and Christianity

(5,219 words)

Author(s): Schaller, Berndt | Lindemann, Andreas | Meyer, Michael A. | Beintker, Michael
[German Version] I. Problems of Terminology – II. Early Judaism – III. New Testament and Primitive Christianity – IV. Early Church – V. Middle Ages to the Present – VI. The Church and Judaism Today I. Problems of Terminology The terminological distinction between Judaism and Christianity (Ἰουδαϊσμός – Χριστιανισμός) made its first appearance at the beginning of the 2nd century, initially in the Ignatian Epistles (Ign. Magn. 10.3; Phld. 6.1). It was a product of Christian usage, borrowed from the contrast between Judaism and Hellenism (Ἑλληνισμός) current in Jewish circles;…

Sedrach, Apocalypse of

(209 words)

Author(s): Schaller, Berndt
[German Version] ( Apoc. Sedr.), apocalyptically conventionalized didactic text, mostly on anthropological themes, named after the biblical Sedrach/Shadrach (LXX and Θ Dan 1:7; 3:12 – corruption of Esdras [Ezra]?). It records Sedrach’s rapture to the third heaven, where he argues with God about the causes of human suffering, the power of the devil, Adam’s sin, the frailness of the body, and the length of sinners’ penance. The date, source, and even the exact compass of the apocalypse are unclear. The text survives fragmen…


(673 words)

Author(s): Schaller, Berndt
Pharisees were members of one of the group movements that characterized early Judaism (Essenes; Sadducees). The name, first found in Phil. 3:5 and based on Aram. pĕrîšayyâ (= Heb. pĕrûšîm, “separated ones”), might well have been first used by others to denote separatists, but the Pharisees themselves could also adopt it in the sense of holy or abstemious ones. 1. Sources We have no reliable sources dating from the period before a.d. 70. For sources we are dependent on Josephus (ca. 37–ca. 100, J.W.  and Ant. ), primitive Christian writings (Paul, the Gospels, and A…


(360 words)

Author(s): Schaller, Berndt
The term “Sadducees” (Gk. saddoukaioi, Heb. ṣaddûqîm, Aram. ṣadduqayya, thought to derive from David’s high priest, Zadok [ ṣādôq], see 2 Sam. 15:24–29) is used for members of a party of priests and nobles in Jerusalem. We have references to them, at times under the name “Boethusians,” only occasionally in Josephus and early Christian and rabbinic writings, mostly hostile. Only within limits, then, can we reconstruct their history and character. Historically important is the question of power in the political and religious life of Palestinian Judaism fro…


(2,572 words)

Author(s): Schaller, Berndt
The seventh day of the week as a day of rest is one of the basic religious and social institutions of Judaism and, along with circumcision, a chief mark of Jewish identity. 1. Term In both biblical and postbiblical texts the usual term is šabbāt. We also find šabbātôn (also meaning “seventh year”) and the combination šabbat šabbātôn, “Sabbath of complete rest,” which can refer to the Sabbath year or to the Day of Atonement. 2. Origin We have no clear knowledge of the origin of the term, which is etymologically obscure. Some derive it from the Heb. verb šbt (cease, celebrate), other…

Herod, Herodians

(598 words)

Author(s): Schaller, Berndt
1. Herod the Great (“the Elder,” according to Josephus Ant.  18.130), the founder of the last Jewish dynasty, derived on his father’s side from Idumeans, who had been forcibly Judaized, and on his mother’s side from Nabateans. He was born in 73 b.c. Already in his youth he was given political appointments by his father Antipater, one of the highest officials in the Hasmonaean kingdom. In 47 b.c. he became military commander in Judea. Like his father, he exploited power struggles between the Hasmonaean br…


(461 words)

Author(s): Schaller, Berndt
The Hasmonaeans (also sometimes called the Maccabees) were the last Jewish ruling family. Under the Hasmonaeans the Jews in Palestine enjoyed a period of political independence in the second and first centuries b.c. The Hasmonaean name occurs for the first time in Josephus (Asamonaioi), and later it is common in the rabbinic writings (beth/bĕnê ḥašmonai). The derivation is uncertain. Josephus ( Ant.  12.265; J.W.  1.36) refers to an ancestor of the same name, but more likely it arises from an association with the place Heshmon (Josh. 15:27) or Hashmonah (Num. 33:29–30). The fami…


(675 words)

Author(s): Schaller, Berndt
1. The name “Enoch” (or “Hanoch,” both from Gk. Henōch, Heb. ḥănôk) is of uncertain meaning, perhaps “follower” or “initiate.” It is used in the Bible for various figures in Genesis 1–11 and the story of the patriarchs: (1) the eldest son of Cain and builder of the first city, of the same name (Gen. 4:17–18); (2) the son of Jared, descendant of Seth (see 2); (3) the son of Midian, grandson of Abraham (Gen. 25:4; 1 Chr. 1:33); and (4) the eldest son of Reuben, grandson of Jacob (Gen. 46:9; Exod. 6:14; 1 Chr. 5:3), and founder of the family of the Hanochites (Num. 26:5). 2. Jewish piety connected…

High Priest

(444 words)

Author(s): Schaller, Berndt
The office of high priest, directing the cult and its personnel, was one of the religious institutions of Israel (§1), as it was of most ancient societies. 1. We have no documentation from the earliest period. The oldest references come from the age of the monarchy (Amos 7:10–15; 1 Sam. 14:3; 21:1–9; 2 Kgs. 12:7; 16:10–16), but with no specific description of the office. Postexilic texts first include the titles hakkōhēn haggādôl (Lev. 21:10; Num. 35:25–28; Hag. 1:1) and kōhēn hārōʾš (2 Chr. 19:11 etc.). The tasks are set forth (atonement of the whole congregation, Lev. 4:16–20),…


(185 words)

Author(s): Schaller, Berndt
[English Version] (ApkSedr), apokalyptisch stilisierte Lehrschrift vornehmlich anthropologischen Inhalts, benannt nach dem bibl. Sedrach (LXX/Θ Dan 1,7; 3,12 – Korruptel aus Esdra [Esra]?). Sie berichtet von Sedrachs Entrückung in den dritten Himmel, Streitgesprächen mit Gott über Ursachen menschlichen Elends, Macht des Teufels, Sünde Adams, Hinfälligkeit des Leibes, Bußzeit der Sünder. Zeit, Herkunft sowie genauer Umfang sind unklar. Der Text ist in einer einzigen griech. Hs. (15.Jh.) überliefert und nur frg…

Rabbi (Rabban, Rabbinen, Rav), Rabbiner

(1,147 words)

Author(s): Jacobs, Martin | Wilke, Carsten | Schaller, Berndt
[English Version] I. Zum BegriffDer hebr. Titel רַבִּי/rabbî leitet sich vom Nomen רַב/rab (»groß«, »von hohem Rang«) ab, das im nachbibl. Hebr., unterschieden vom Sklaven oder Schüler (mSuk 2,9; mGit 4,4; mAv 1,3), die Bedeutung von »Meister« (Rav) annahm. Die Anrede Rabbi (R.; »mein Meister/Lehrer«) wurde zum Titel und u.a. mit den Namen paläst. Gelehrter verbunden (z.B. R. Aqiva), während Rav für bab. Rabbinen gebraucht wurde. R. kommt auch als Name für Jehuda (ha-Nasi) vor. Die aram. Form Rabban (»unser…