Volume 49 - Issue 1

Pedagogy and Biblical Theology: Tracing the Intertextuality of the Book of Proverbs

By Dan Martin


This paper articulates a provisional thesis, namely, that we need a pedagogical category within our biblical theological frameworks, on the basis that such a category was in the New Testament authors’ minds. I begin by outlining the challenges of integrating the book of Proverbs into biblical theology to date, before highlighting the value of intertextuality as the primary inductive method for constructing biblical theology. I then demonstrate through a ‘worked example’ the mutually interpretive canonical relationship of a Proverbs text with the New Testament, providing a tentative basis for a pedagogical biblical theological category. I conclude by outlining how this thesis can be tested and developed through further research.

How does the book of Proverbs ‘fit’ into whole-bible theology? Broadly speaking, treatments of the Proverbs with respect to biblical theology have tended towards one of two poles. Some scholars have tended to ignore the covenantal outlook of the book, insisting it is creation theology.1 Alternatively, some scholars have inserted Proverbs into redemptive-historical frameworks which can integrate some aspects of the book of Proverbs but exclude much at the same time.2 The rich textual connections between Proverbs and Genesis, Deuteronomy, and other parts of the Hebrew canon are well recognised within Old Testament scholarship.3 Yet among works of biblical theology, Proverbs is generally considered in fairly brief terms4 when compared with the space it occupies within the canon.5 In contrast to the first category, we might ask, if the Proverbs do not inform a biblical theology, why are they quoted in the New Testament? In contrast to the second category we might ask, given that the book of Proverbs is quoted and alluded to in multiple New Testament texts, why is so little attention given to it in contemporary works of biblical theology? I have previously argued, following a survey of the literature, that a robust biblical theology which fully integrates the book of Proverbs is lacking.6Much contemporary biblical theology scholarship has tended to be preoccupied with redemptive-historical readings. While the ‘storyline’ of the canon is foundational, redemptive history must not be considered co-extensive with the task of biblical theology.7 The relative under-consideration of the book of Proverbs in works of biblical theology is emblematic of an approach to biblical theology that tacitly views redemptive history as functionally its goal and extent. In such an approach, as we argue below, the pedagogical categories of the canon become overlooked.

The problems are at root methodological, bound up with whether biblical categories are established inductively. For instance, a false dichotomy between ‘creation’ and ‘covenant’ easily creeps into biblical theology. The problem lies not with these as distinct theological themes or concepts, but with the assumption that the canon presents them as separable categories. Further, as will be considered further below, the category of ‘wisdom literature’ is far from inductive. Rather, it is essentially a functional category imposed upon the canon, intended to summarise texts which perform the ‘function’ of wisdom instruction, or appear to meet the criteria of a wisdom ‘form’. The canon does present us with categories within which to understand the Proverbs, but these must be received inductively if we are to be faithful to the project of biblical theology.

The solution is at root methodological. The aim of this paper is to suggest that we need a pedagogical category within our biblical theological frameworks, by demonstrating that such a category was in the New Testament authors’ minds. I argue that intertextuality is the primary inductive method for constructing biblical theology. I demonstrate through a ‘worked example’ the mutually interpretive canonical relationship of a Proverbs text with the New Testament, providing a tentative basis for a pedagogical biblical theological category. Intertextuality is being rewardingly rediscovered as a core tool for biblical theology, and we now turn to consider it directly.

I am using the term ‘pedagogy’ to mean ‘training for right living’, or ‘formation’, a concept which encompasses formal and informal—or explicit and implicit—methods and content, and a focus not only on skills but also on character. It is generally acknowledged that Proverbs 1–9 are pedagogical,8 but Ansberry has shown convincingly that indeed the whole book is compiled as a deliberate pedagogical progression through its discrete units.9

1. Intertextuality and Biblical Theology

There is growing scholarly support for the rejection of ‘wisdom literature’ as a theological category.10 This is due on the one hand to the lack of inductive canonical evidence for such a category11 and on the other hand to the manifest weakness of form-critical approaches which, built upon historical speculation, have been found wanting, especially at the level of individual texts.12

There is a degree of logical inevitability to the rejection of form criticism, given that ‘mixed forms are the norm, not the exception’.13 Furthermore, ‘not only are the historical settings extrapolated from the literary forms along traditional lines, but the forms themselves must be extrapolated as well’.14 The waning interest in form criticism correlates with the rising interest in intertextuality, since generalised form-critical theories imposed upon texts had the effect of ‘obscuring the particularities of individual texts’.15 The quest for wisdom literature’s influence in the canon had the effect of silencing the interpretation of intertextual links, ‘thereby perpetuating wisdom’s isolation even when pursuing its interaction with the rest of the canon’.16 As the form emphasis has dissipated, such textual relationships can be allowed to speak and be heard:

The challenges to form criticism’s focus on generalization encourage these new connections to be pursued. Doing so enables the complexity of these texts and the culture from which they came to emerge anew from the shackles of categorical segmentation.17

What, then, do we mean by intertextuality? ‘Intertextuality’ includes ‘diachronic’ (or ‘sequential’) and ‘synchronic’ (or ‘simultaneous’) methods of reading texts and theoretical reflection on what texts are. Fundamentally, intertextual interpretation ‘examines connections between actual texts as an aid to their interpretation’.18 As a simple shorthand we might say that intertextuality, in its clearest instances, is a form of ‘inner-biblical exegesis’.19

But if intertextuality is the primary avenue to biblical theological construction, we must recognise that it is a variegated category. Whilst no consensus exists about the precise criteria needed to establish a given type of intertextual relationship20— and thus quite where one category becomes the next may be debated—three distinct clusters of intertextuality can be articulated as below.

  • Demonstrable, authorially intended, mutually interpretive intertextuality.
  • Demonstrable, authorially intended, intertextuality without mutual interpretation.
  • Reader controlled intertextuality.

Each cluster is centre-bounded rather than boundary-bounded. Thus, while certain intertextual relationships will clearly fall into one of these three categories, clear criteria are needed to define precisely where the boundaries lie. Thus far, consensus on such criteria has proved elusive and is likely to remain so.21 Nevertheless, our purpose at this point is simply to highlight that ‘intertextuality’ is necessarily a variegated dynamic.

By ‘mutually interpretive’ we mean that the later text interprets the earlier and also in some way is interpreted by it. The later text may make clearer a latent meaning contained in the earlier text, while being controlled or constrained by the earlier text in some way; ‘later biblical quotations of and allusions to earlier Scripture unpack the meaning of that earlier Scripture, and yet the earlier passage also sheds light on the later passage’.22 This relationship is at its most marked when the New Testament explicitly quotes the Old, though it is present within the Hebrew Bible.23 We will explore an instance of mutually interpretive intertextuality below.

In contrast, Ben Sirach’s allusions to Proverbs 7 (for instance) fall into our second category, since the interpretive relationship—though intended by the author of Ben Sirach24— is not mutual. Whilst consensus does not exist regarding the criteria by which authorially intended intertextuality can be established, it is widely accepted that a mere solitary verbal allusion or parallel is insufficient.25 Other factors, such as multiple verbal allusions or similar contexts or genres,26 would likely be needed to substantiate an authorially-intended intertextuality.

Beyond this lie ‘reader controlled’ intertextualities, essentially arbitrary or coincidental points of connection between texts, within which a thoughtful reader can discern meanings which were not necessarily intended by the author of either text. Such intertextual relationships have been called ‘spatial’ in contrast to ‘temporal’ and are ‘completely non-intentional’; their value lies in ‘what texts can be taken to mean’.27

With regards to our first category of intertextual relationship, we cannot have a ‘mutually interpretive’ relationship unless a canon of inspired texts is presupposed. While it is beyond the scope of this paper to engage with questions regarding the canon,28 we can note two points. Firstly, if new redemptive historical stages were accompanied by new inspired writings,29 then biblical theology implies canon as much as canon implies biblical theology. Secondly, we can therefore infer that added layers of intertextuality were necessarily added as biblical redemptive history progressed. The degree to which the books of the canon were ordered so as to promote intertextual readings30 is a subset of this progressive layering.

The task of meaningful theological construction from intertextuality ultimately depends upon an inspired canon. If there is no inspiration, there can be no authorially-intended, mutually interpretive intertextuality. If there is no mutually interpretive intertextuality, the reader of Scripture is left with the problem of arbitrariness: how seriously should I take this intertextual relationship? If the best answer is, ‘this is of intellectual interest’, then it is clear that the intertextual relationship is not authoritative enough to inform life and practice. It is illustrative that, in Dell and Kynes’s volume on reading Proverbs intertextually,31 Heim’s chapter on Proverbs in relationship to the New Testament did not treat the New Testament’s own quotations of Proverbs as qualitatively more significant than the author’s own intertextual explorations.32

To summarise our method, then: the inspired canon provides the redemptive-historical framework which makes mutually interpretive intertextuality possible. This type of intertextuality is authoritative for theological construction. We now provide a worked example of Proverbs/New Testament mutually interpretive intertextuality.

2. Worked Example of Intertextuality Between Proverbs and the New Testament

Below we outline the mutually interpretive relationship of Proverbs 3:34 with two New Testament passages, 1 Peter 5:5 and James 4:6. Before examining the specific details of this connection, we can note that both Peter and James, in quoting this text, considered it to be authoritative to the contexts they were addressing. The presence of even one such quotation challenges both the ‘solely creation theology’ perspective on the Proverbs (since the canon clearly regards at least this text as covenantal) and the ‘Christocentric heuristic’ perspective (since in this example, ‘Christ as wise man’ is not clearly in view).33

2.1. Proverbs 3:34 in Original Context

Toward the scorners he is scornful, but to the humble he gives favour. (Prov 3:34 ESV)

ןחֵֽ־ןתֶּיִ םיינעלו ץילִ֑יָ־אוּהֽ םיצִלֵּלַ־םאִ (Prov 3:34 WLC)

κύριος ὑπερηφάνοις ἀντιτάσσεται ταπεινοῖς δὲ δίδωσιν χάριν. (Prov 3:36 LXX)

In the original context, Proverbs 3 is located within the lengthy preamble of chapters 1–9 which provides the interpretive framework for the rest of the book.34 Both chapter 3 and the wider preamble are strongly pedagogical. Verse 34 forms part of the conclusion (3:33–35) to a discrete lecture (3:13–35) within this preamble section.35 Proverbs 3 contains a number of referents to life in covenant with YHWH.36 The word ‘favour’ ( חֵֽן) functions as an inclusio, occurring at the end of the introduction (3:4) and at the conclusion (3:34). Finally, the chapter ends with a string of covenantal antitheses (3:33–35).

Five prohibitions are given in Proverbs 3:27–31, all of which communicate the kinds of relationships which a young man displaying ‘sound judgement and discernment’ will avoid. The prohibitions are followed by the motivations behind these prohibitions (3:32–35), within which our text is placed. Common to all these motivations is the antithesis between YHWH’s posture towards the wicked and his posture towards the righteous. Verse 34 states this antithesis incisively and pithily. Whilst the humble will receive favour (grace), ‘mockers will get from God exactly what they give others: as they tear everything down with their mouths, so the Lord will tear them down with his curse; as they cover others with reproach, so that Lord will cover them with shame.’37

In James, the quotation of this text falls within a call to repent. In 1 Peter 5 the quotation falls within a call to ‘humble yourselves’. The NT appears to see 3:34 then as a kind of ‘shorthand’ for the covenantal love placed upon those in Christ, as opposed to those who live in opposition to God’s rule. In both James and 1 Peter the Proverbs text appears to have been presumed familiar enough that it is being treated as an axiom. Let us consider each NT text in turn.

2.2. Proverbs 3.34 and James 4.6

But he gives more grace. Therefore it says, ‘God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble.’ (Jas 4:6 ESV)

μείζονα δὲ δίδωσιν χάριν; διὸ λέγει ὁ θεὸς ὑπερηφάνοις ἀντιτάσσεται, ταπεινοῖς δὲ δίδωσιν χάριν. (Jas 4:6 NA28)

James 3 has considered and contrasted two kinds of wisdom and highlighted the ‘wisdom that comes from heaven’ which leads to human flourishing. ‘The beginning of James 4 …is not changing the subject but rather analyses what does not make for peace.’ 38 Carson summarises the logic of James 4:5–6 as follows:

God’s longing for us is driven by his own holy jealousy, but God is as gracious as he is holy, and he supplies us with all the grace we need to meet his own holy demand.…4:6a comes across as an encouragement, [and] James …will not permit grace to stand by itself, without consideration of the appropriate response. That response is humility, and its antithesis is pride—a point that James makes by quoting Prov 3:34. 39

Regarding the Hebrew text, we must note the choice of words. Literally, ‘He [God] mocks the mockers’. In the LXX, which James follows, we have the subtly different phrase, ‘the Lord opposes the proud’. This text does not appear to be quoted or clearly alluded to in extrabiblical Judaism.40 Thus in James 4:6 the author appeals to a familiar wisdom contrast encapsulated in Proverbs 3:34; the text is regarded as axiomatic to how sinful creatures can dwell in relationship with a holy and jealous God.

2.3. Proverbs 3:34 and 1 Peter 5:5

Likewise, you who are younger, be subject to the elders. Clothe yourselves, all of you, with humility toward one another, for ‘God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.’ (1 Pet 5:5 ESV)

Ὁμοίως, νεώτεροι, ὑποτάγητε πρεσβυτέροις πάντες δὲ ἀλλήλοις τὴν ταπεινοφροσύνην ἐγκομβώσασθε, ὅτι [] θεὸς ὑπερηφάνοις ἀντιτάσσεται, ταπεινοῖς δὲ δίδωσιν χάριν. (1 Pet 5:5 NA28)

Peter appeals to Proverbs 3:34 as justification for the exhortation for ‘all’ to ‘humble themselves’. It is clear that by the first century there was a strong tradition within Judaism which stressed the antithesis between the wise and the foolish,41 and which ‘stressed the importance of dependence on God for the kind of wisdom that brings life’.42 Like the book of James, 1 Peter follows the LXX rather than the Hebrew text in its quotation of Proverbs 3:34 which, as already noted, has a subtle loss of the wordplay on ‘mock’. Unlike James, Peter emends ‘the Lord’ to ‘God’.

In context then, Peter calls Christian disciples to ‘true humility …recognizing one’s complete dependence on God …expressed by the acceptance of one’s role and position in God’s economy’.43 It is worthy of remark that Peter appeals to a Proverbs text when wishing to emphasise a theme which ‘lies at the heart of the Bible’s storyline and of God’s plan of redemption brought to fulfillment in the cross and resurrection of Jesus Christ and to consummation at the end.’44 We are thus provided with a connection between the pedagogical and the redemptive-historical.

2.4. Concluding the Worked Example

The initial intertextual exploration above serves as an illustration of the need for further research of this kind if a robust, exegetical, and intertextual biblical theology of the Proverbs is to be constructed. This is because Proverbs 3:34 is one of the most explicit quotations of the book of Proverbs in the New Testament yet does not fall simply into the ready categories of existing biblical theologies. In each of the two New Testament quotations of Proverbs 3:34, the text quoted is referred to as authoritative, axiomatic, and a key point of reference for the point being made (contra the trend of downplaying the canonical matrix of the Proverbs). In both cases the category of ‘Christ as wise man’ is not primarily in view, nor any other redemptive-historical contour (contra the trend of rigidity in biblical theological frameworks).

At this point let me return to my thesis: In the minds of the New Testament writers, the book of Proverbs occupied a predominantly pedagogical category which was located within the broader redemptive-historical framework of the canon. I am not arguing that inductive categories are necessarily limited only to typology or pedagogy, but that pedagogy is a warranted biblical-theological category which should therefore be reflected in our biblical-theological construction.

If it is true that the entirety of the book of Proverbs is intended to function pedagogically,45 we can reasonably expect pedagogy to have been the default category in the minds of NT writers. The use of Proverbs 3:34 in the New Testament is consistent with pedagogy which is located within a broader redemptive-historical framework.

This emerging hypothesis leads us to make the tentative comment that the book of Proverbs leads us not only typologically—to Jesus as the Sage greater than Solomon (Matt 12:42)—but also, pedagogically, to find a treasury of pedagogical content for embodied living in the ‘real world in real time’ under the rule of Christ. If this thesis is substantiated by the intertextual data, the implications are extensive. How might we scrutinise this thesis?

3. Testing the Thesis

A systematic study of intertextual connections between the Proverbs and the rest of the canon, and a subsequent synthesis, is warranted. This would take as its starting point explicit quotations of the Proverbs in the New Testament. The following list (in addition to the texts considered above) represents a starting selection of clear intertextual connections, though it is far from exhaustive:

  • Prov 3:11–12 and Heb 12:5–6
  • Prov 4:26 and Heb 12:13
  • Prov 10:12 and 1 Pet 4:8
  • Prov 11:31 and 1 Pet 4:18
  • Prov 22:9 and 2 Cor 9:7
  • Prov 25:6–7 and Luke 14:10
  • Prov 25:21–22 and Rom 12:20
  • Prov 26:11 and 2 Pet 2:22

This would be followed by a systematic study of lexical allusions in the Greek NT to the LXX text of Proverbs (e.g., Luke 2:52 and Prov 3:4). It is likely that this will yield a more significant volume of intertextual data than has been recognised to date. For example, the NT’s use of a term such as παιδεία (Eph 6:4; Heb 12:5–11) appears not as a referent to a Graeco-Roman category, but to the LXX of Proverbs, where it appears 26 times, often translating רסָּומ (‘discipline/instruction’), and also functioning as a ‘shorthand’ or primary term for wisdom.46 Even on this preliminary detail much hangs, since it would appear that Paul has the book of Proverbs in mind when he urges fathers in the church in Ephesians 6:4. Thus, further study of NT allusions to the LXX text of Proverbs is merited.

The above research can then be synthesised in part around Jesus of Nazareth’s self-awareness as the ‘wisdom of God’. Noting the emphasis on wisdom in Jesus’s boyhood in Luke’s gospel (Luke 2:40, 53), this course of research would go on to consider Jesus’s own wisdom expressions in relation to himself, including Luke 11:49 in relation to its parallel in Matt 23:34, and Jesus’s comment that he is ‘greater than’ Solomon (Matt 12:42). The recent resurgence of interest in Proverbs 8 in relation to texts such as 1 Corinthains 1:24 and Revelation 3:14, in light of eternal generation,47 would be commended for inclusion within this synthesis. Directly related is Jesus’s own apparent pedagogical preference to teach in ‘parables’—the LXX’s main translation of the Hebrew לָשָׁמ, which is doubtless significant.48

The above research can then be synthesised with two directly connected biblical theological themes, namely the tree of life and the fear of the Lord. The ‘tree of life’ is a phrase occurring only in Genesis, Proverbs, and Revelation of the biblical canon. The literature to date seeking to integrate the tree of life’s appearance within the Proverbs to biblical theology has been fairly scant. Although the ‘fear of the Lord’ has long been recognised as a richly intertextual49 organising principle of the Proverbs and indeed of ‘wisdom’ literature,50 it merits attention as an overtly biblical theological theme spanning both testaments.

Our thesis can then be further tested alongside the historical reception of Proverbs. Such an accessory stream of research could help to confirm or disprove whether, historically, the book of Proverbs has been received within Christian communities as (at least in part) pedagogical.

Finally, the ultimate goal of this research is thorough integration of the Proverbs into the dominant themes and categories of biblical theology. In this paper we are making the tentative suggestion that we need a robustly pedagogical category in our biblical theology, a category which connects the canonical redemptive storyline to our dynamic, situated lives and wills. For this to be achieved, all of the above will need to be synthesised with the broader themes of, for instance, the kingdom of God,51 union with Christ,52 ironic ‘redemptive reversals’,53 and more.

Clearly, much theological reflection is required to tease out the relation of pedagogy and typology in the new covenant. If it is true that Proverbs pedagogically complements the Deuteronomic paradigm,54 then we can expect ‘wisdom’—as pedagogical training for right living—in the new covenant to reflect the ‘greater’ redemptive reality of the person and work of Jesus of Nazareth. This in turn brings us back to the study of ‘Jesus as Sage’ above. We might express this a fortiori relationship as ‘fractal’; a consistency of shape with an increase in scale. Just as Jesus’s sermon on the mount is rooted in Deuteronomy but expanded in keeping with the greater redemptive reality, so new covenant wisdom is rooted in Proverbs, and expanded. For instance, the assurance of grace to the humble of Proverbs 3:34 is amplified in Jesus’s assurance that those who take up their cross and follow him will find eternal life.

Furthermore, if this thesis is true, it enriches reflection on the relationship between biblical and systematic theology, since it subverts—to a degree—the assumption that biblical theology (first) sets the stage upon which systematic theology (second) then builds application. The presence of even one demonstrable NT quotation or allusion to the Proverbs shows that, at least in part, biblical theology’s scope legitimately expands into ‘application’. At the same time, the warrant for Proverbs-grounded pedagogy within the new covenant immediately provides a framework for far more granular real time application, given the diversity of content contained within the Proverbs; a framework which complements both biblical and systematic theology in their classic senses. We might say that it adds a third layer, that of necessarily situated pedagogy, which addresses the question of how people should make decisions, and interpret situations, in real time.

If this provisional thesis is found to be warranted after testing against the textual data outlined above, it will add richness to the understanding that the risen Lord Jesus Christ, as Sage, leads his people in real time, in the real world, by his words—words rooted in the Proverbs.

4. Conclusion

How does the book of Proverbs ‘fit’ into whole-Bible theology? If biblical theology functionally ceases at the point of establishing a redemptive-historical reading of a theme or themes through the canon, there will be a resultant skew in the New Testament’s perceived handling of the Old. The book of Proverbs is one example of an Old Testament book which a) features explicitly in the New Testament, through quotations (as well as implicitly through allusions), and yet b) does not feature much in biblical theological literature at either academic or popular levels. Rather than seeing redemptive-history as functionally co-extensive with biblical theology, it should function more as the starting point for rich, biblical theological construction. The hypothesis we have articulated in this paper is that Proverbs occupied a pedagogical category of ongoing importance in the minds of the NT writers.

The significance of recovering a biblical theology of the Proverbs lies in the subsequent capacity for the right application of wisdom within home, church, academy, marketplace, and state. The book of Proverbs claims to hold out wisdom pertinent to all these spheres and more. If a solid foundation can be established for how to read and apply the Proverbs, then wise living can be built upon that foundation. Axiomatic to constructing such a foundation is to arrive at clarity upon how Solomon’s wisdom relates to the Christ and his kingdom. We have argued in this paper that such a biblical theology of Proverbs can be constructed by careful consideration of intertextual connections across the canon. We have argued that Proverbs occupies a pedagogical category within biblical theology, a category that existed in the minds of the New Testament writers, and we have outlined how this hypothesis can be tested in future research.

[1] E.g., Walther Zimmerli, ‘The Place and Limit of the Wisdom in the Framework of the Old Testament Theology’, SJT 17 (1964): 146–58; Douglas Kennard, ‘The Reef of Biblical Theology: A Method for Doing Biblical Theology That Makes Sense for Wisdom Literature’, SwJT 55 (2013): 227–51.

[2] E.g., Stephen G. Dempster, Dominion and Dynasty: A Biblical Theology of the Hebrew Bible, NSBT 15 (Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 2003).

[3] C. Hassell Bullock, ‘Wisdom, the “Amen” of Torah’, JETS 52 (2009): 5–18; Katharine J. Dell and Will Kynes, eds., Reading Proverbs Intertextually, LHBOTS 629 (London: Bloomsbury T&T Clark, 2019).

[4] In one of the newest and most outstanding Biblical theology volumes, Proverbs is considered in a handful of pages and ‘wise living’—as a biblical theological synthesis—in a page: Andreas J. Köstenberger and Gregory Goswell, Biblical Theology: A Canonical, Thematic, and Ethical Approach (Wheaton, IL: Crossway, 2023), 320–24, 762–63.

[5] A laudable exception to this trend is James M. Hamilton, God’s Glory in Salvation through Judgment: A Biblical Theology (Wheaton, IL: Crossway, 2010).

[6] Daniel Martin, “Let the Simple Learn Wisdom: Difficulties in Constructing a Biblical Theology of the Proverbs,” The Evangelical Review of Theology and Politics 9 (2021): A17–36.

[7] Hamilton, God’s Glory in Salvation through Judgment, 565.

[8] Daniel J. Estes, Hear, My Son: Teaching and Learning in Proverbs 1–9, NSBT 4 (Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 1997).1997

[9] Christopher B. Ansberry, Be Wise, My Son, and Make My Heart Glad: An Exploration of the Courtly Nature of the Book of Proverbs, BZAW 422 (Berlin: De Gruyter, 2011), 184–90.

[10] Will Kynes, An Obituary forWisdom Literature: The Birth, Death, and Intertextual Reintegration of a Biblical Corpus (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2019).

[11] Martin, ‘Let the Simple Learn Wisdom’; Tremper Longman III, The Fear of the Lord Is Wisdom: A Theological Introduction to Wisdom in Israel (Grand Rapids: Baker Academic, 2017), 276–82.

[12] Erhard Blum, ‘Formgeschichte—a Misleading Category? Some Critical Remarks’, in The Changing Face of Form Criticism for the Twenty-First Century, ed. Marvin A. Sweeney and Ehud Ben Zvi (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2003), 32–45; Mark Sneed, ‘“Grasping After the Wind”: The Elusive Attempt to Define and Delimit Wisdom’, in Was There a Wisdom Tradition? New Prospects in Israelite Wisdom Studies, ed. Mark Sneed, AIL 23 (Atlanta: SBL, 2015), 39–67; Stuart Weeks, ‘The Limits of Form Criticism in the Study of Literature, with Reflections on Psalm 34’, in Biblical Interpretation and Method: Essays in Honour of Professor John Barton, ed. Katharine J. Dell and Paul M. Joyce (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013), 15–24.

[13] Dell and Kynes, Reading Proverbs Intertextually, 2.

[14] Dell and Kynes, Reading Proverbs Intertextually, 2.

[15] Dell and Kynes, Reading Proverbs Intertextually, 2; James Muilenburg, “Form Criticism and Beyond,” JBL 88 (1969): 1–28.

[16] Dell and Kynes, Reading Proverbs Intertextually, 1; Roland E. Murphy, ‘The Interpretation of Old Testament Wisdom Literature’, Int 23 (1969): 289–301.

[17] Dell and Kynes, Reading Proverbs Intertextually, 2.

[18] Will Kynes, ‘Intertextuality: Method and Theory in Job and Psalm 119’, in Biblical Interpretation and Method: Essays in Honour of Professor John Barton, ed. Katharine J. Dell and Paul M. Joyce (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013), 201–13.

[19] Daniel C. Snell, Twice-Told Proverbs and the Composition of the Book of Proverbs (Winona Lake, IN: Eisenbrauns, 1993).

[20] Timothy K. Beal, ‘Intertextuality’, in Handbook of Postmodern Biblical Interpretation, ed. A. K. M. Adam (St. Louis: Chalice, 2000), 128–30; Geoffrey Miller, ‘Intertextuality in Old Testament Research’, CurBR 9 (2011): 283–309.

[21] Miller, ‘Intertextuality in Old Testament Research’, 283.

[22] G. K. Beale, A New Testament Biblical Theology: The Unfolding of the Old Testament in the New (Grand Rapids: Baker Academic, 2011), 3.

[23] Michael Fishbane, Biblical Interpretation in Ancient Israel (Oxford: Clarendon, 1988).

[24] Pancratius C. Benntjes, ‘Intertextuality Between the Book of Ben Sira and the Book of Proverbs’, in Reading Proverbs Intertextually, ed. Katharine Dell and Will Kynes (London: Bloomsbury T&T Clark, 2019), 141–54.

[25] Vincent Skemp, ‘Avenues of Intertextuality between Tobit and the New Testament’, in Intertextual Studies in Ben Sira and Tobit, ed. Jeremy Corley and Vincent Skemp, CBQMS 38 (Washington, DC: Catholic Biblical Association of America, 2005), 43–70.

[26] Beentjes, ‘Intertextuality Between the Book of Ben Sira and the Book of Proverbs’.

[27] J. Barton, ‘Deja Lu: Intertextuality, Method or Theory?’, in Reading Job Intertextually, ed. Katharine J. Dell and Will Kynes, LHBOTS 574 (London: Bloomsbury T&T Clark, 2019), 1–16.

[28] See, for instance David G. Dunbar, ‘The Biblical Canon’, in Hermeneutics, Authority and Canon, ed. D. A. Carson and John D. Woodbridge (Leicester: Inter-Varsity Press, 1986); Matthew Barrett, Canon, Covenant and Christology: Rethinking Jesus and the Scriptures of Israel, NSBT 51 (Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 2020).

[29] Michael J. Kruger, The Question of Canon: Challenging The Status Quo in the New Testament Debate (Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 2020).

[30] Timothy J. Stone, The Compositional History of the Megilloth: Canon, Contoured Intertextuality and Meaning in the Writings, FAT II/59 (Tübingen: Mohr Siebeck, 2013).

[31] Dell and Kynes, Reading Proverbs Intertextually.

[32] Knut H. Heim, ‘Proverbs in Dialogue with the New Testament’, in Reading Proverbs Intertextually, ed. Katharine Dell and Will Kynes (London: Bloomsbury T&T Clark, 2019), 167–78.

[33] For further consideration of these perspectives see Martin, ‘Let the Simple Learn Wisdom’, 19–25.

[34] Estes, Hear, My Son, 15–17; Brevard S. Childs, Introduction to the Old Testament as Scripture (Philadelphia: Fortress, 1979), 552–53; Brevard S. Childs, Introduction to the Old Testament as Scripture (Philadelphia: Fortress Press, 1979

[35] Bruce Waltke, The Book of Proverbs: Chapters 1–15, NICOT (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2004), 272–74.

[36] Martin, ‘Let the Simple Learn Wisdom’.

[37] Waltke, The Book of Proverbs: Chapters 1–15, 273.

[38] D. A. Carson, ‘James’, ed. G. K. Beale and D. A. Carson, Commentary on the New Testament Use of the Old Testament (Grand Rapids: Baker Academic, 2007), 1007.

[39] Carson, ‘James’, 1008.

[40] Carson, ‘James’, 1008.

[41] Charlotte Hempel, Armin Lange, and Hermann Lichtenberger, The Wisdom Texts from Qumran and the Development of Sapiential Thought, BETL 159 (Leuven: Peeters, 2002).

[42] D. A. Carson, ‘1 Peter’, ed. G. K. Beale and D. A. Carson, Commentary on the New Testament Use of the Old Testament (Grand Rapids: Baker Academic, 2007), 1043.

[43] Karen H. Jobes, 1 Peter, BECNT (Grand Rapids: Baker Academic, 2005), 309.

[44] Carson, ‘1 Peter’, 1043.

[45] Ansberry, Be Wise, My Son, and Make My Heart Glad, 184–90.

[46] For instance, Proverbs 25:1 LXX renders ‘proverbs of Solomon’(המֹׁלֹשְׁ ילֵשְמִ) as αἱ παιδεῖαι Σαλωμῶντος.

[47] Matthew Y. Emerson, ‘The Role of Proverbs 8: Eternal Generation and Hermeneutics Ancient and Modern’, in Retrieving Eternal Generation, ed. Fred Sanders and Scott R. Swain (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2017), 44-66; cf. Craig A. Carter, ‘The Premodern View’, in Five Views of Christ in the Old Testament: Genre, Authorial Intent, and the Nature of Scripture, ed. Brian J. Tabb and Andrew M. King, Counterpoints (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2022), 260–61.

[48] Of the 33 appearances of לָשָׁמ in the LXX, 28 of them are rendered παραβολή. D. A. Carson, The Gospel According to John, PNTC (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1991), 513.

[49] Bullock, ‘Wisdom, the “Amen” of Torah’, 11–16.

[50] Henri Blocher, ‘The Fear of The Lord as the “Principle” of Wisdom’, TynB 28 (1977): 3–28.

[51] Christopher W. Morgan and Robert A. Peterson, The Kingdom of God, Theology in Community (Wheaton, IL: Crossway, 2012).

[52] Constantine R. Campbell, Paul and Union with Christ: An Exegetical and Theological Study (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2015).

[53] G. K. Beale, Redemptive Reversals and the Ironic Overturning of Human Wisdom, SSBT (Wheaton, IL: Crossway, 2019); Hamilton, God’s Glory in Salvation through Judgment.

[54] Ansberry, Be Wise, My Son, and Make My Heart Glad, 188–89; Bullock, ‘Wisdom, the “Amen” of Torah’, 16–18.

Dan Martin

Dan Martin is a pastor at Grace Church Gateshead in the North-East of England.

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