According to Paula Fredriksen in Paul, the Pagan’s Apostle, people have misinterpreted Paul partly because they have used the concept of religion. She has absorbed a lot of the ideas of Brent Nongbri who thinks religion doesn’t exist, but is something that modern people have made up.
I haven’t read Nongbri, but I have watched this interview with him.
It isn’t until about 15 minutes in that he gets down to his main idea, which seems to be that religion as a realm that contrasts with another realm—the secular realm—is a modern invention. So to say that religion does not exist is not to say anything about the reality of divine beings. It is more that, particularly in first-century Roman society, it was not a thing separate from political, economic or family life.
I love the idea that Paul was not religious. I do not consider myself religious either…
View original post 472 more words