Priests of the Law tells the story of the first people in the history of the common law to think of themselves as legal professionals. In the middle decades of the thirteenth century, a group of justices working in the English royal courts spent a great deal of time thinking and writing about what it meant to be a person who worked in the law courts. This book examines the justices who wrote the treatise known as Bracton. Written and re-written between the 1220s and the 1260s, Bracton is considered one of the great treatises of the early common law and is still occasionally cited by judges and lawyers when they want to make the case that a particular rule goes back to the beginning of the common law. This book looks to Bracton less for what it can tell us about the law of the thirteenth century, however, than for what it can tell us about the judges who wrote it. The judges who wrote Bracton - Martin of Pattishall, William of Raleigh, and Henry of Bratton - were some of the first people to work full-time in England's royal courts, at a time when there was no recourse to an obvious model for the legal professional. They found one in an unexpected place: they sought to clothe themselves in the authority and prestige of the scholarly Roman-law tradition that was sweeping across Europe in the thirteenth century, modelling themselves on the jurists of Roman law who were teaching in European universities. In Bracton and other texts they produced, the justices of the royal courts worked hard to ensure that the nascent common-law tradition grew from Roman Law. Through their writing, this small group of people, working in the courts of an island realm, imagined themselves to be part of a broader European legal culture. They made the case that they were not merely servants of the king: they were priests of the law.
The Borgarthing Law and the Eidsivathing Law is dedicated to two closely linked medieval laws which were intended to cover adjacent legal provinces in eastern Norway, around and beyond the modern capital, Oslo. The core of this book consists of new translations of the two laws, based on the recent editions and translations into modern Norwegian by Eyvind Fjeld Halvorsen and Magnus Rindal. Individual rules cover subjects such as Church rites, prohibitions, property, and payments, and shed light on medieval ideas relating to matters as diverse as disability, sexual relations, witchcraft, and forbidden foods. The volume contains a general introduction by Torgeir Landro and Bertil Nilsson, in addition to a translator’s introduction by Lisa Collinson, summarizing in English some of the information on manuscripts and relevant linguistic studies outlined by Halvorsen and Rindal. The translated texts in English are also supplemented by footnotes, supplying key readings from the original, in some cases with significant variants from relevant manuscripts. With a commentary on the individual chapters after each translation, drawing on recent scholarship on medieval law, Church history, and other relevant historical fields, this book is an ideal resource for students and scholars of medieval Norwegian legal history.
The author of Hebrews is arguing that God himself has brought about the fulfillment of these institutions through his Son's priesthood, his once-for-all sacrifice, and the new covenant he inaugurated in the last days. These new institutions are never denied the Jews. In fact, the context of the epistle presumes that these are primarily for the Jews, considering that the author was speaking to a Jewish-Christian community. The author is not arguing for the abandonment by God of the Jewish people, but rather for the abandonment of the shadowy means by which God's people drew near to him. It is here we can speak of a qualified supersessionism. According to the author of Hebrews, the Levitical priesthood, the Mosaic covenant, and the Levitical sacrifices have been superseded by Jesus' priesthood, the new covenant, and Jesus' once-for-all sacrifice. However, we conclude that the polemical passages in Hebrews do not promote hatred of the Jews, nor do they advocate the destruction of the Jewish people. Rather, the author of Hebrews stresses the fulfillment of specific Jewish institutions for the benefit of the Jews. It is this idea of fulfillment that rules out the charge that the epistle promotes the supercession of the Jewish people. Because of God's great love for his people, he has provided a superior way by which his people can draw near to him. --from the Conclusion
'Canon Law' explores the canon law of the Roman Catholic Church from a comparative perspective. The introduction to the book presents historical examples of antinomian and legalistic approaches to canon law.
In these expositions, author Tim James demonstrates the book of Hebrews to show more fully than any other New Testament book that in Christ and His High Priestly ministry is to be found the fulfillment of the types, shadows and pictures of the priesthood and the offerings of the Old Testament. The inspired writer of Hebrews, without introduction or greeting, immediately sets before us that One to whom all the Old Testament pointed. The Lord Jesus Christ is that Word by whom God speaks to men and through whom we speak to God. Tim reminds us that Hebrews sets forth Christ as being better than the angels, the prophets and the priests of the Old Testament, and His sacrifice fully accomplished the salvation of God’s people. The New Covenant, Tim points out, is more excellent than the Old Covenant and Jesus Christ is not only the message of the New Covenant, but the Messenger of it as well. With clarity and simplicity, Tim sets forth the superiority of Christ and the power of his once-for-all sacrifice that “perfected forever them that are sanctified” (Hebrews 10:14). In a very methodical manner, Tim instructs the reader that the New Covenant exceeds the Old which has been done away with. This letter to the Hebrews (and all others) is a warning to all who forsake the gospel of free grace and return to the law as either a refuge for salvation or even as a rule of life. If a person professes to believe the gospel of Christ and then goes back to a legalistic system, such a treasonous act means that person, as Tim says, “will have no part in the world to come, where a man, the Man, the Messiah rules with His people.” As the author works his way through this Epistle, the reader will appreciate that he avoids technical and deep theological jargon and writes instead in an easy-to-read manner. While reading this manuscript, you will find the book to be not only an accurate exposition, but a very good devotional book as the author continually keeps the focus upon Christ and His substitutionary, justice-satisfying work of redemption.