Professor of New Testament at The Divinity School, Duke University
Echoes of Scripture in the Letters of Paul (Yale, 1989)
The Moral Vision of the New Testament: A Contemporary Introduction to New Testament Ethics (Harper-SanFrancisco, 1996)
First Corinthians: A Bible Commentary for Teaching and Preaching (Westminster John Knox, 1997)
To use a baseball image (and Richard Hays is a serious fan of the minor league Durham Bulls), Hays has hit a home run every time he has stepped to the plate. His Ph.D. thesis, on the correct translation of a phrase in Galatians, sparked theological discussion that continues to this day. His book Echoes of Scripture in the Letters of Paul helped reverse the long-standing belief that the Old Testament was of little importance for Paul's theology. Greg Jones, dean of Duke Divinity School, calls that book "a stunning achievement," and says it was "one of the few books I can remember reading and thinking, 'This is going to change a lot of my thinking.' "
Hays's latest book, The Moral Vision of the New Testament, may well become the standard work in New Testament ethics. Fuller Seminary President Richard Mouw says of Hays, "Richard is a triple threat: a gifted interpreter of biblical materials, an expert on the history of early Christianity, and a first-rate ethicist." In Moral Vision, Hays not only takes up crucial issues in a compelling way, he carefully shows every seam of his argument, so that reading Moral Vision becomes an education in how to reason biblically about ethical issues.
Hays pulls no punches, applying the New Testament texts as morally authoritative on such contentious concerns as homosexuality and divorce. As such, he is bound to please conservatives. ...1