I suppose I could have designed a book cover that was more appealing to the general (book-buying) population. In case you don’t know what it represents, let me tell you.
My book is the result of a life-time of studying early Christianity and a year of full-time writing. In order to demonstrate what my theories mean, I needed to present my own translations of the letters of Paul. By the way, it is a translation but with paraphrasing in italics so the reader can follow my line of interpretation. Every translation is an interpretation, though people can forget that and think the English translation is the text itself. The Greek text upon which a translation is based is a representation of centuries of manuscript copies. The only way to update our understanding of this textual tradition is to go back to the Greek texts with fresh eyes.
What I did was buy a stock image from Shutterstock of a parchment manuscript page. I then found a free font called Sinaiticus. It represents the handwriting of the scribe(s) who copied out the great Codex Sinaiticus in the fourth century. In order to replicate it, I copied the Greek text from the beginning of Romans, stripped out the punctuation and spaces to create the scriptio continua text, made sure the variants in Sinaiticus were included, and then put in most of the nomina sacra with the line across the top of the sacred abbreviations. That’s what you see in the background of the front cover.
I might have been able to get permission to use an image of a page from Codex Sinaiticus. I like, however, that my image represents not the ancient manuscript that has survived for thousands of years but the text as it might have looked when it was first put together. What that means for me is that I have gone back two thousands years to look at the texts in a fresh way based on recent scholarship. With a small set of presuppositions, I followed where my research led me and made myself be true to my conscience.
I didn’t write this book to please people so I could sell a lot of books. I wrote the book to squeeze out of myself what I’ve been trying to say for the past thirty years. I’ve done that to the best of my ability, and that’s all anyone can ask of themselves.