The Idea of Israel in Second Temple Judaism (Signed Copy)


A New Theory of People, Exile, and Israelite Identity

Cambridge University Press


In this book, Jason Staples proposes a new paradigm regarding the biblical concept of Israel and how it was shaped by Jewish apocalyptic hopes for restoration after the Babylonian Exile. Challenging conventional assumptions about Israelite identity in antiquity, his argument is based on a close analysis of a vast corpus of biblical and other early Jewish literature and material evidence. Staples demonstrates that continued hopes for Israel’s restoration in the context of diaspora and imperial domination remained central to Jewish conceptions of Israelite identity throughout the final centuries before Christianity and even into the early part of the Common Era. He also shows that Israelite identity was more diverse in antiquity than is typically appreciated in modern scholarship. His book lays the groundwork for a better understanding of the so-called ‘parting of the ways’ between Judaism and Christianity and how earliest Christianity itself grew out of hopes for Israel’s restoration.

1 review for The Idea of Israel in Second Temple Judaism (Signed Copy)

  1. lawrence s rosenthal

    Thank you for finally providing a current and age old understanding of who and what Israel really is. After the creation of the State of Israel and discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls we now have the luxury of events and data that allow an understanding of Israel that was in centuries past held by great Jewish theologians. I can only hope that Mr. Staples will continue to write & explain the understanding of Jewish Christianity that has been lost for centuries. I feel that Saul of Tarsus is dancing in Heaven. Thanks Jason, Larry Rosenthal,

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