“extending Or Restricting The Covenant? Abraham And The People Of God In Christian Tradition” By Anders Runesson

In Jewish tradition, Abraham is the center and point of departure from where the narrative of the origins of the Jewish people is weaved. Non-Jews are, in Jewish discourse, related to Adam, and even more so, to Noah. Interestingly, although some early followers of Jesus referred to a small set of laws that have been associated with Adam and Noah to govern the lives of non-Jews in the movement, the earliest sources we have access to from the Jesus movement, the Pauline letters, connects both Jews and non-Jews to Abraham. Indeed, for Christians, the figure of Abraham is at the very heart of a theological trajectory that opens up for non-Jews the possibility of joining the covenant between the God of Israel and the Jewish people. In other words, Abraham is, in fact, a large part of the reason why Christianity developed as it did.

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Dr. Anders Runesson is an Associate Professor at McMaster University in Canada. Please visit his website www.andersrunesson.com

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