St Andrews Symposium on the Son of God – Day 1

The St Andrews symposium on ‘Son of God: Divine Sonship in Jewish and Christian Antiquity’ kicked off today with a busy afternoon including four plenary sessions and a parallel session with four papers.

Richard Bauckham started the day with a paper on the use of Lord  (κυριος) as a replacement for the divine name/tetragrammaton within the extant second temple literature and late Hebrew Bible. In contrast the Gospels portray Jesus as never using the titular κυριος for addressing God, but rather uses Father (abba) instead—except in Old Testament quotes and twice in Mark.

There were a bevy of interesting papers in the parallel sessions including Crispin Fletcher-Louis advancing the thesis that Solomon’s presentation in 1 Kings 3-4 provides a partial typological fulfilment of the Adamic intentions, and therefore a resource for the paradigm of earliest Christology. Steven Muir highlighted the abba cry in Romans 8 and linked it to the ὐιοσθεσια metaphor therein; and Jarrett Van Tine provided an interesting reading of the celibacy narrative in Matthew 19 and related it to the fulfilment of the promises to eunuchs in Isaiah 56.

Finally we rounded out the day with three plenaries on cultural and textual backgrounds to the Son of God theme. Menahem Kister looked at Son(s) of God in the Hebrew Bible, Madhavi Nevader investigated the Ancient Near Eastern context and George Brooke presented the evidence in the Dead Sea Scrolls drawing upon 4Q246.

The day drew to a close with a few hours of conversation over a couple of pints and a dram in the local pub. Great day.


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