Paul’s Expanded Shema in 1 Corinthians 8:6

Paul’s Expanded Shema in 1 Corinthians 8:6 June 9, 2011

On the blog Diglotting, in a post with the title “Paul, 1 Cor. 8.6, and the Shema,” Kevin Brown asked if anyone apart from me views what Paul is doing in 1 Corinthians 8:6 as a supplementing of the Shema (adding one human lord alongside the one God) rather than an inclusion of Jesus within the Shema (and, according to Richard Bauckham, within the “divine identity,” whatever that means).

My own thoughts on this subject can be found not only in the chapter on Paul in my book The Only True God: Early Christian Monotheism in Its Jewish Context but also in a forthcoming article in Biblical Theology Bulletin which you can already read online via my Selected Works page. Jimmy Dunn’s recent book, Did the First Christians Worship Jesus?: The New Testament Evidence, also addresses this possibility.

You already know what I think, and it has been a while since the biblioblogs were alive with a discussion of monotheism and Christology. So let’s hear from others. What do you think Paul meant in this passage? Was Paul a monotheist in exactly the same sense as his other Jewish contemporaries? Please answer in the comments here, or on your own blog!


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