Through a detailed evaluation of treatments of circumcision in the primary authors of the second century BCE to the first century CE, Livesey demonstrates that there is no common or universally recognized meaning for the Jewish rite of circumcision. The meaning of circumcision is contingent upon its literary context.
Livesey contributes to the scholarly arguments that Paul was never anything other than a Jew. She demonstrates that at the point where Paul seems most likely to have stepped from Judaism into Christianity (Phil 3:5-21), Paul‘s language reveals an abundance of parallels to the well-known Greco-Roman motif of self-mastery common to the writings of his Jewish contemporary Philo.
This essay contributes to the scholarly view that in his Dialogue with Trypho, Justin is centrally concerned with the creation of distinct Christians and Jews. By using treatments of circumcision as a test case and engaging Justin‘s Dialogue rhetorically and stylistically – by commenting upon not only the structure of his arguments including aspects pertaining to sound such as breath-measures but also upon his choice of words and biblical references – Livesey documents the distinction making process and provides supporting material often lacking in the scholarship on Justin.
This article is similar in genre to an encyclopedia entry. Livesey characterizes Justin as a Christian philosopher and highlights topics such as his understanding of Christ and demons. She discusses Justin‘s articulation of early Christian practices and his rather lengthy engagement with Jews and Jewish issues.