Walking in Their Sandals: A Guide to First-Century Israelite Ethnic Identity

This volume invites readers to walk in Israelite sandals, that is, to take a journey of the imagination, and to immerse themselves in the identity, values, and institutions of first-century CE Israelites with the help of contemporary social-scientific studies and theories. What emerges is that the Israelites did not practice a religion. Rather, they were an ethnos, or as this book describes it, an ethnic identity, who lived out a particular way of life and culture the customs of the fathers. It is to belong to a people who obtained their collective identity, honor, and sense of worth from their socialization and membership in Israel and from the social convention of loyalty to their rich cultural tradition. It was to belong to a “world,” or having a perspective on the world with its own quality of “knowledge,” which, among other things, preferred collectivism over individualism, and orthopraxy over orthodoxy.

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