In the School of Ben Sira of Jerusalem

David A. deSilva

in The Jewish Teachers of Jesus, James, and Jude

Published in print October 2012 | ISBN: 9780195329001
Published online January 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780199979073 | DOI:
In the School of Ben Sira of Jerusalem

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This chapter provides an introduction to the social, cultural, and historical context of Ben Sira's work as a trainer of the youth of the Jewish elite in Jerusalem, as well as to the essential contours and content of Ben Sira's curriculum. As a respected voice who left his teaching to posterity in writing, and who was clearly read among Essenes and Pharisees (and oft quoted in rabbinic literature), Ben Sira was in a prime position to enter the streams of Jewish tradition that would influence Judean and Galilean youths brought up in the synagogues. The evidence for the impact of Ben Sira's teaching on the sayings of Jesus, particularly in regard to forgiveness, almsgiving, and other facets of piety, and upon the teaching of James, particularly in regard to proper care in speech and the question of human responsibility, is explored in detail. Points of disagreement are also examined.

Keywords: Ben Sira; Hellenistic Reform; Torah; almsgiving; proper speech; temptation; forgiveness; Jesus; Letter of James; women

Chapter.  14021 words. 

Subjects: Biblical Studies

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