David Instone-Brewer graduated from the South Wales Baptist College in Cardiff and then began a Ph.D. program at Cambridge University. His research focused on Paul's use of the Hebrew Scriptures in light of ancient Jewish interpretation in New Testament times, and was published as Techniques and Assumptions in Jewish Exegesis Before 70 CE., Vol.30 of Texte und Studien zum Antiken Judentum (Mohr & Siebeck, Tübingen, 1992). For five years Instone-Brewer was Assistant Minister and then Minister at Llanishen Baptist Church in Cardiff. Divorcees often came to him because they could not get remarried in their Anglican or Catholic church. This forced him to look again at the scriptural foundations of the church teaching on this issue. In the light of his Jewish studies he saw that the New Testament presented a very different picture to the one that most scholars had previously seen. He produced several academic papers and a large academic book on the subject. He followed this up with a summary booklet for the Grove Biblical series and a book on divorce and pastoral issues for general readers. Instone-Brewer's hobby is computer programming. Tyndale House in Cambridge approached him to be their Research Librarian because of his dual skills in computers and academic biblical studies. The Ministry Department of the Baptist Union encouraged him, saying that the academic world was an important area of work for Baptist Ministers. After a few years Tyndale House gave him more time to spend on research by making him a Research Fellow and Technical Officer. Tyndale House is (arguably) among the three best libraries in the world in the area of Biblical Studies (alongside the École Biblique in Jerusalem and the Pontifical Institute in Rome). Instone-Brewer is now engaged in a five-year project to identify and elucidate all the rabbinic traditions that can be dated before 70 C.E. He applies dating techniques that have been established by rabbinic scholars during the last thirty years. Publication of asix-volume work by Eerdmans began in 2004. This effort will help New Testament scholars rediscover rabbinic texts that have been neglected due to uncertainties about dating.
Articles by David Instone-Brewer
- Jesus’ Sabbath Dispute with Pharisees in a Cornfield
- Links with Tabernacles and Hanukkah in the Gospel Accounts of Palm Sunday
- Rabbinic Reflections on Living Sacrifices at Romans 12:1