Theo-Economics in Early Christianity
Imprint: Yale University Press
The divine was an active participant in the economic spheres of the ancient Mediterranean world. Evidence demonstrates that gods and goddesses were represented as owning goods, holding accounts, and producing wealth through the mediation of religious and civic officials. This book argues that early Christ-followers also used financial language to articulate and imagine their relationship to the divine. Theo-economics—intertwined theological and economic logics in which divine and human beings regularly transact with one another—permeate the letters of Paul and other texts connected with Pauline communities. Unlike other studies, which treat the ancient economy and religion separately, Divine Accounting takes seriously the overlapping of themes such as poverty, labor, social status, suffering, cosmology, and eschatology in material evidence from the ancient Mediterranean and early Christian texts.
“An important, convincing, and necessary intervention in Pauline studies and the study of the ancient economy, Divine Accounting stands to make a large impact on future scholarship.”—Cavan Concannon, author of “When You Were Gentiles"
“Divine Accounting is a fascinating and important book – with Jennifer Quigley a brilliant and incomparable guide to both the literary and other material evidence for the roles of divine participants in ancient Mediterranean economies and, thus, within epistles and their audiences.”—Joseph A. Marchal, author of Appalling Bodies: Queer Figures Before and After Paul's Letters