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The scriptures of Israel in Colossians 2:8–15: The echo of Deuteronomy 30:6 in 2:11

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Chapter Summary

Paul's thought is more in line with the MT than the LXX, which freely interprets the divine circumcision as a "cleansing." Aquila has rendered his Greek version so as to literally reflect the Hebrew, as is his custom, and his translation further confirms that Paul's echo is closer to the MT. Two criteria necessary for an echo are: i) availability and ii) rare concept similarity. Regarding availability, the book of Deuteronomy was certainly known and read by Paul. Regarding rare concept similarity, the two texts share the otherwise unique theme of a divinely accomplished circumcision. While several texts of Scripture speak of a circumcision (or uncircumcision) of the heart, only one ever speaks of God circumcising the heart. Nevertheless, recognition of Deut 30:6 deepens and enhances the meaning of Col 2:11 and enlarges our understanding of Paul as a biblical theologian.

Keywords: Aquila; book of Deuteronomy; Colossians 2; God; Paul; rare concept similarity; scripture



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