The biblical background of Paul's understanding of faith as obedience
Matthews, Robert Dean
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This study considers the role and nature of obedience in Hebraic religion as prerequisite to an understanding of Paul's conversion experience, hie Christ-mystician, and his rejection of the Law in favor of the submissive act of obedience which is faith. The contention of this at~ is that anthropological research has been unable to discover the motivating factors in the formation of religious customs and beliefs, which have been disguised by the processes of repression and rationalization. The psychoanalytic method, therefore, has been applied to the institutions of Judaism in chapter two resulting in a more penetrating interpretation. Traces of totemism are found throughout the Old Testament. A consideration of early Semitic religion enlightened by the psychoanalytic method leads to the conclusion that the Passover is a ceremonial slaying of the god for the purpose of identification by incorporation. The "subsequent obedience" which this ritual produces is so overwhelming that Hebrew religion becomes a way of life in which submission is regarded as the principal virtue. The feast of unleavened bread was a Canaanite agricultural rite attached to the Passover because it centered around the same conception. The feasts are reinterpreted in Judaism as memorials of God's acts in history. [TRUNCATED]
Thesis (Ph.D.)--Boston University.