Selling and Buying Slaves in Early Christian and Early Rabbinic Parables

  • M.J. Stoutjesdijk (Speaker)

    Activity: Talk or presentation typesInvited talkScientific


    In this chapter of my dissertation on Early Christian and Early Rabbinic slavery parables we will focus on the way the beginning of a slave’s life is portrayed in the parables. We will see how the terminology of bills, prices, remission of debts and ransoms permeates our parables. At the same time it will be made clear in this chapter how these economical terms parallel a very animated theological discourse on the status of man vis-à-vis god. In the first section we give a brief overview on the sources of slaves in antiquity, ranging from adoption to war. In the second section we discuss, with the help of a number of parables, the formal features of the sale of slaves, like delivery terms and bills. In the third section we focus on one particular source of slaves: debts. In this section a Christian and a rabbinic parable will be compared in detail. In the fourth and last section a hitherto unexplored rabbinic parable from Sifre Numbers demands a detailed study. We think that this parable will be of much help in understanding the Pauline language of slavery in the New Testament. In our conclusion a brief summary of findings will be given, together with the presentation of a Bildfeld.
    Period15 Apr 2019
    Event titleNOSTER Spring Conference 2019
    Event typeConference
    LocationDriebergen-Rijsenburg, NetherlandsShow on map
    Degree of RecognitionNational


    • Slavery
    • Selling
    • Buying
    • Slaves
    • Parables
    • Early Christianity
    • Early Rabbinic Judaism