The Biblical Authors vs. Greek Philosophy (Joseph Dodson)

The Bible is full of references to other texts, containing a diverse range of cultural forces and ideas. The biblical authors engaged with Egyptian mythology, Babylonian theology, and Roman and Greek philosophy with a discerning eye for what to keep, what to reject, and what to turn on its head.

In this episode, Dr. Joseph Dodson, Associate Professor of New Testament at Denver Seminary, joins Dru Johnson to discuss the interaction between the Greek philosophy of Stoicism and Scripture. He describes the philosophical context within which the apostles wrote, including the Stoicism that was popular at the time. Then, they discuss how authors such as Paul and John appropriated (and sometimes contradicted) Stoic beliefs to articulate the gospel. They also talk about the diverse nature of the Hebraic intellectual world, the education of the apostles, and why we should read the Apocrypha.

Show notes:

  • 0:00 The context of Scripture
  • 2:42 Defining Stoicism
  • 7:28 Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle
  • 12:01 Blending Judaism with Roman and Greek philosophy
  • 20:05 The Hebraic intellectual world
  • 24:45 John’s integration of philosophy
  • 28:30 Book recommendations on the context of the New Testament

A recommended book edited by Joseph Dodson: Paul and the Giants of Philosophy: Reading the Apostle in Greco-Roman Context

Show notes by Micah Long.

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