Dr. Rafael Rodriguez

Professor of New Testament
Profile image for Dr. Rafael Rodriguez
B.A. in Bible (Cincinnati Christian University)
M.A. in Biblical Studies (Cincinnati Christian University)
Ph.D. in Biblical Studies (University of Sheffield)


The First Christian Letters: Reading 1 and 2 Thessalonians

Jesus Darkly

If You Call Yourself a Jew: Reappraising Paul’s Letter to the Romans 

Oral Tradition and the New Testament: A Guide for the Perplexed

Structuring Early Christian Memory: Jesus in Tradition, Performance, and Text

The So-Called Jew in Paul’s Letter to the Romans

Essays and Articles:

Review of Scot McKnight, Lynn H. Choice, and Nijay K. Gupta, eds., Dictionary of Paul and His Letters (second edition) in Catholic Biblical Quarterly

“The Ἰουδαῖος in Romans: First to the Gentile-Become-Jew, Then Also to the Gentile-as-Gentile.” in Catholic Biblical Quarterly

“Father Abraham Had Many Sons: Paul and the Outside-In Family of Abraham,” in The Beginning of Paul’s Gospel: Theological Explorations in Romans 1–4.

“Major Review: Reading Romans Backwards: A Gospel of Peace in the Midst of Empire by Scot McKnight” in Interpretation: A Journal of Bible and Theology

“Zeal that Consumed: Memory of Jerusalem’s Temple and Jesus’ Body in the Gospel of John” in Biblical Interpretation in Early Christian Gospels, Volume 4: The Gospel of John

Commentary of the Gospel of Mark in T&T Clark Social Identity Commentary on the New Testament

“Your Will Be Done: Remembering Jesus’ Submission to the Father” in To Recover What Has Been Lost: Essays on Eschatology, Intertextuality, and Reception History in Honor of Dale C. Allison, Jr.

“Baptism” in The Reception of Jesus in the First Three Centuries.

Published a review of Bernhard Oestreich’s Performance Criticism of the Pauline Letters in Review of Biblical Literature.

Serves on the editorial board of Catholic Biblical Quarterly

Review of Speech-in-Character, Diatribe, and Romans 3:1–9: Who’s Speaking When and Why It Matters by Justin King in SBL Central.

Review of The Pharisees by Amy-Jill Levine and Joseph Siever in Encounter

“Text as Tradition—Tradition as Text: Early Christian Memory and Jesus’ Threat against the Temple” in Svensk Teologisk Kvartalskrift.

Review of William S. Campbell’s Romans: A Social Identity Commentary in Studies in Christian Jewish Relations.

Podcasts: Faith in the Folds: Romans with Rafael Rodriguez

The Two Testaments: Romans 15:14–16:27

Service: Serves on the Institutional Review Board at University of Tennessee, Knoxville

My favorite part about teaching at Johnson is: Being a part of equipping men and women for their calling in service of the kingdom of God.

When I’m not teaching, I love to: Read, drink coffee, spend time with family and friends, and watch movies.

In my classes, students can expect: To learn to experience the Bible again as for the first time.

My best advice to a new student in my program is: Think of your academic work in the Bible as spiritual acts of worship rather than a task or a chore.

Because of my influence, I most want my students to become: Curious about the world around them and the possibilities for meaning and connection that are literally everywhere.

The myth-busting truth about my discipline I most want people to understand is: Biblical scholarship is always changing, growing, and responding to the world we live in. Just because the Bible is two millennia old doesn’t mean the study of the Bible is ancient or irrelevant!

A quote that influences how I live is: “The fact that we think we are following your will does not mean that we are actually doing so. But we believe the desire to please you does in fact please you. And we hope we have that desire in all that we are doing.” – Thomas Merton (adapted)