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The Parables of Jesus

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In this startling work, Luise Schottroff proposes an alternative reading of Jesus' parables. Her work decries the traditional allegorizing of Jesus' stories, with their easy identification of God as one of the characters in the stories. This work argues that the parables are fictional stories that describe the social realities and structures of an oppressive situation. It describes how they present an alternative to the social structures of the Roman Empire. It provides a critique of the traditional readings of the parables, written by a leading New Testament scholar.
Luise Schottroff is an internationally renowned New Testament scholar who has pioneered both feminist criticism of the New Testament and bold social-justice readings of the Gospels. She is the author of 22 books including The Bible in Women's Perspective.
Acknowledgments Introduction PART 1: LEARNING TO SEE The Pharisee and the Toll Collector (Luke: 18:9-14) The Vinegrowers and Violence (Mark 12:1-12) The Closed Door (Matt 25:1-13) Politics with Carrot and Stick (Matt 22:1-14) The Snubbed Host (Luke 14:12-24) The Barren Fig Tree (Luke 13:1-9) Hearing and Doing the Torah (Mark 4:1-20) PART 2: IN SEARCH OF A NON-DUALISTIC PARABLE THEORY Social-Historical Interpretation of the Bible in the Framework of Contextual Theologies Dualism in Parable Theories Metaphor or Not Metaphor? That Is the Question What Is a Parable? The Historical Jesus and the Jesus in the Gospels The Genre of Parable Discourse Toward a Synthesis of Methods The Literary Context: The Gospels PART 3: JESUS THE PARABLE-TELLER: THE PARABLES IN THE LITERARY CONTEXT OF THE GOSPELS Political Prophecy (Mark 4:26-32) Springtime and the Night Watchers (Mark 13:28-37) Gos Is Near: Jesus the Parable-Teller in the Gospel of Mark (Summary) Loving God: The Merciful Samaritan (Luke 10:25-37) The Great Messianic Feast of Rejoicing, or The Partying Neighbor Women (Luke 15:1-32) "Once There Was a Rich Man": Money and the Torah (Luke 16) "He Lived the Life of a Slave": Slave Parables in the Gospel of Luke (Luke 12:35-48; 17:3-10; 19:11-27) Crying to God: The Insistent Friend and the Stubborn Widow (Luke 11:5-13 and 18:1-8) Parables in the Gospel of Luke (Summary) God's Forgiveness and the World of Finance (Matt 18:21-35) Bread and Hope ((Matthew 13) "Am I Not Allowed to Do What I Choose with What Belongs to Me?" (Matt 20:1-16) The End of Violence: Jesus' Discourse in the Temple (Matt 21:23-22:14) The Parable of the Talents and God's Judgment on the Nations (Matt 25:14-46) Appendix: How Should I Read a Jesus Parable? Notes Abbreviations Bibliography List of Parables Discussed Index of Ancient Sources Index of Subjects and Names
"A far ranging, stimulating and provocative volume that proposes a holistic and integrated approach to the parables. A special strength of the volume can be found in Schottroff's concerted effort to set the parables in the tradition of Jewish parabolic literature." -- William R. Herzog II, Colgate Rochester Divinity School "This book is a brilliant combination of social history, literary acumen, and feminist/liberationist perspectives. It is a 'must read' for anyone, scholar, pastor or student alike, who has ever tried to interpret or preach from the parables." -- Mary Ann Tolbert, Pacific School of Religion and the Graduate Theological Union
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