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The Fourth Gospel is deeply shaped by its remarkably high Christology. It depicts the earthly Jesus, the incarnate one, as fully divine. This unrelenting Christology has led interpreters, both ancient and modern, to questionthe historical value of John's Gospel. For many, the Gospel is just theology. It is to the vexed relationship between history and theology that JArg Frey turns in Theology and History in the Fourth Gospel . John's theological obsession with Christology might suggestthat history counts for little in the Gospel. But, as Frey argues, the Gospel's clear andcentralclaim is that John narrates the story of Jesus of Nazareth, his ministry, and his death, as "factual," and that this narrated "history" is foundational for the Christian message.Frey tracesthe Gospel's use of the available historical tradition by chiefly drawing from Mark and the Johanninecommunity. Even if the Gospel ofJohn used this receivedwitness in a remarkably free manner,replotting and renarrating traditional episodes and even creatively staging new episodes, Frey contends thatthe historical life and person ofJesus remain central to John's enterprise. In the end, Frey warns that Johannine interpretation will miss the intention of the Gospel and the interpretive perspective of the evangelist if it remains preoccupiedmerely withquestions ofhistorical accuracy. The interpretivegoalis to "let John be John," and, as Frey shows, readers will always yield to the priority of theology over history in the Fourth Gospel. In John's telling of the Christ story, the significance of history lies precisely in its disclosure of theological meaning, just as the significance of the historical Jesus is only understood in the theological language of Christology.
Greg Carey's guide equips readers to develop their own informed assessments of Luke's Gospel. The book begins with an inductive exposition of Luke's singular approach to composing a story about Jesus, examining its use of Mark, clues to its social setting, and its distinctive literary strategies. Recognizing that many readers approach Luke for theological and religious reasons, while many others do not, a chapter on `Spirit' addresses Luke's presentation of the God of Israel, how the Gospel ties salvation to the person of Jesus, and how the problems of sin and evil find their resolution in the kingdom of God and in community of those who follow Jesus. A chapter on `Practice' examines the Gospel's vision for human community. While many readers find a revolutionary message in which women, the poor, Gentiles and sinners find themselves included and blessed in Luke's Gospel, this volume calls attention to inconsistencies and tensions within the narrative. Luke does speak toward inclusion, Carey argues, but not in a revolutionary way. Could it be that the Gospel promises more than it delivers? Carey suggests that Luke speaks to people of relative privilege, challenging them toward mercy and inclusion rather than toward fundamental social change. An Epilogue reflects upon contemporary readers of Luke, most of whom enjoy privilege in their own right, and how they may respond to Luke's story.
A healthy church is a church in which every member--young and old, mature and immature--unites around the wonderful good news of salvation through Jesus Christ. Toward that end, this study pays close attention to the gospel as defined in Romans 1-4. Participants will learn the Bible's teaching on God, man, Christ, and our response, and see how these truths apply to the practices of the local church.
A series of ten 6-7 week studies covering the nine distinctives of a healthy church as originally laid out in Nine Marks of a Healthy Church by Mark Dever. This series explores the biblical foundations of key aspects of the church, helping Christians to live out those realities as members of a local body. Conveniently packaged and accessibly written, the format of this series is guided, inductive discussion of Scripture passages and is ideal for use in Sunday school, church-wide studies, or small group contexts.
Though considered one of the most important informants about Judaism in the first century CE, the Jewish historian Flavius Josephus's testimony is often overlooked or downplayed. Jonathan Klawans's Josephus and the Theologies of Ancient Judaism reexamines Josephus's descriptions of sectarian disagreements concerning determinism and free will, the afterlife, and scriptural authority. In each case, Josephus's testimony is analyzed in light of his works' general concerns as well as relevant biblical, rabbinic, and Dead Sea texts. Many scholars today argue that ancient Jewish sectarian disputes revolved primarily or even exclusively around matters of ritual law, such as calendar, cultic practices, or priestly succession. Josephus, however, indicates that the Pharisees, Sadducees, and Essenes disagreed about matters of theology, such as afterlife and determinism. Similarly, many scholars today argue that ancient Judaism was thrust into a theological crisis in the wake of the destruction of the second temple in 70 CE, yet Josephus's works indicate that Jews were readily able to make sense of the catastrophe in light of biblical precedents and contemporary beliefs. Without denying the importance of Jewish law-and recognizing Josephus's embellishments and exaggerations-Josephus and the Theologies of Ancient Judaism calls for a renewed focus on Josephus's testimony, and models an approach to ancient Judaism that gives theological questions a deserved place alongside matters of legal concern. Ancient Jewish theology was indeed significant, diverse, and sufficiently robust to respond to the crisis of its day.
Luke wrote the book of Acts as a testament to the explosive spread of the gospel and the rapid growth of the church after Christ's ascension. Beginning with the outpouring of the Holy Spirit on Pentecost when the church was born, he shows how Christ empowered His followers with divine authority to preach the gospel to all nations. Luke also shows how, even in the midst of persecution and opposition, the early believers were able to rely on God's spirit for direction and continue with the work He had given them to do. God showed His infinite power regardless of the circumstances, just as He continues to do today. The MacArthur Bible Studies provide intriguing examinations of the whole of Scripture. Each guide incorporates extensive commentary, detailed observations on overriding themes, and probing questions to help you study the Word of God with guidance from John MacArthur.
In this addition to the successful Catholic Commentary on Sacred Scripture (CCSS) series, Scott Hahn, a bestselling author and a leading Catholic interpreter of Scripture, examines Romans from within the living tradition of the Church for pastoral ministers, lay readers, and students alike. The CCSS relates Scripture to Christian life today, is faithfully Catholic, and is supplemented by features designed to help readers understand the Bible more deeply and use it more effectively in teaching, preaching, evangelization, and other forms of ministry. Supported by leading Catholic scholars as well as popular Bible teachers, the series offers a unique level of commentary for Catholic students of the Bible. Its attractive packaging and accessible writing style make it a series to own--and to read! Drawn from the best of contemporary scholarship, series volumes are keyed to the liturgical year and include an index of pastoral subjects.
The use of Scripture in 1 Peter has been subject to much extensive analysis in the last thirty years. In Written to Serve Benjamin Sargent offers an up to date and comprehensive analysis of how 1 Pet 1.10-12 offers a `hermeneutic,' providing an insight into how Scripture is interpreted in the letter. Sargent also argues that the relation of 1.10-12 has been misunderstood. Rather than offering a Christological hermeneutic with a focus on the suffering and glories of Christ, Sargent asserts that the primary importance of 1.10-12 is its orientation of the prophetic witness towards the eschatological community as an act of service. Similarly, rather than offering a theological narrative of continuity between Israel and Christian communities, 1.10-12 may be seen to suggest a narrative of profound discontinuity in which the community in the present is elevated above God's people of the past.
The Gospel of Thomas sheds new light on the origins of Christianity and portrays Jesus as a wisdom-loving sage. This collection of aphoristic sayings portrays the kingdom of God as a present fact about the world, rather than a future promise or future threat.
Through facing-page commentary this edition focuses on the meaning of the sayings as those teachings were preserved by an ancient source outside of the canonical New Testament, and brings to life the challenging and intriguing figure of Jesus in a new light. Now readers can approach this important spiritual text with no previous background knowledge in Christian history or thought.
One of the most important theologians of the twentieth century illuminates the relationship between ourselves and the teachings of Jesus
What can the call to discipleship, the adherence to the word of Jesus, mean today to the businessman, the soldier, the laborer, or the aristocrat? What did Jesus mean to say to us? What is his will for us today? Drawing on the Sermon on the Mount, Dietrich Bonhoeffer answers these timeless questions by providing a seminal reading of the dichotomy between "cheap grace" and "costly grace." "Cheap grace," Bonhoeffer wrote, "is the grace we bestow on ourselves...grace without discipleship....Costly grace is the gospel which must be sought again and again, the girl which must be asked for, the door at which a man must know....It is costly because it costs a man his life, and it is grace because it gives a man the only true life."
The Cost of Discipleship is a compelling statement of the demands of sacrifice and ethical consistency from a man whose life and thought were exemplary articulations of a new type of leadership inspired by the Gospel, and imbued with the spirit of Christian humanism and a creative sense of civic duty.
In this book, Katherine M. Hockey explores the function of emotions in the New Testament by examining the role of emotions in 1 Peter. Moving beyond outdated, modern rationalistic views of emotions as irrational, bodily feelings, she presents a theoretically and historically informed cognitive approach to emotions in the New Testament. Informed by Greco-Roman philosophical and rhetorical views of emotions along with modern emotion theory, she shows how the author of 1 Peter uses the logic of each emotion to value and position objects within the audience's worldview, including the self and the other. She also demonstrates how, cumulatively, the emotions of joy, distress, fear, hope, and shame are deployed to build an alternative view of reality. This new view of reality aims to shape the believers' understanding of the structure of their world, encourages a reassessment of their personal goals, and ultimately seeks to affect their identity and behaviour.
This study brings three different kinds of readers of the Gospel of John together with the theological goal of understanding what is meant by Incarnation and how it relates to Pascha, the Passion of Christ, how this is conceived of as revelation, and how we speak of it. The first group of readers are the Christian writers from the early centuries, some of whom (such as Irenaeus of Lyons) stood in direct continuity, through Polycarp of Smyrna, with John himself. In exploring these writers, John Behr offers a glimpse of the figure of John and the celebration of Pascha, which held to have started with him. The second group of readers are modern scriptural scholars, from whom we learn of the apocalyptic dimensions of John's Gospel and the way in which it presents the life of Christ in terms of the Temple and its feasts. With Christ's own body, finally erected on the Cross, being the true Temple in an offering of love rather than a sacrifice for sin. An offering in which Jesus becomes the flesh he offers for consumption, the bread which descends from heaven, so that 'incarnation' is not an event now in the past, but the embodiment of God in those who follow Christ in the present. The third reader is Michel Henry, a French Phenomenologist, whose reading of John opens up further surprising dimensions of this Gospel, which yet align with those uncovered in the first parts of this work. This thought-provoking work brings these threads together to reflect on the nature and task of Christian theology.
Timothy was a close associate of Paul who was facing problems within the church that he was leading in Ephesus. In these personal letters, Paul gives practical pastoral instruction to his protege, highlighting godliness and holy living to help Timothy fulfill his calling and effectively carry out his important tasks in the church. "Let no one despise your youth," Paul encouraged, "but be an example to believers in word, in conduct, in love, in spirit, in faith, in purity" (1 Timothy 4:12). Paul's gentle encouragement in these letters challenges Timothy to persevere in his faith-a faith that might have been weakening under the pressure of the church and the persecution of the world. Paul's godly counsel was helpful not only to Timothy, a first-century Christian leader, but is also helpful to each of us as believers today. The MacArthur Bible Studies provide intriguing examinations of the whole of Scripture. Each guide incorporates extensive commentary, detailed observations on overriding themes, and probing questions to help you study the Word of God with guidance from John MacArthur.
Archaeology and the Letters of Paul illuminates the social, political, economic, and religious lives of those to whom the apostle Paul wrote. Roman Ephesos provides evidence of slave traders and the regulation of slaves; it is a likely setting for household of Philemon, to whom a letter about the slave Onesimus is addressed. In Galatia, an inscription seeks to restrain the demands of travelling Roman officials, illuminating how the apostolic travels of Paul, Cephas, and others disrupted communities. At Philippi, a list of donations from the cult of Silvanus demonstrates the benefactions of a community that, like those in Christ, sought to share abundance in the midst of economic limitations. In Corinth, a landscape of grief extends from monuments to the bones of the dead, and provides a context in which to understand Corinthian practices of baptism on behalf of the dead and the provocative idea that one could live"as if not" mourning or rejoicing. Rome and the Letter to the Romans are the grounds for an investigation of ideas of time and race not only in the first century, when we find an Egyptian obelisk inserted as a timepiece into the mausoleum complex of Augustus, but also of a new Rome under Mussolini that claimed the continuity of Roman racial identity from antiquity to his time and sought to excise Jews. Thessalonike and the early Christian literature associated with the city demonstrates what is done out of love for Paul-invention of letters, legends, and cult in his name. The book articulates a method for bringing together biblical texts with archaeological remains. This method reconstructs the lives of the many adelphoi-brothers and sisters-whom Paul and his co-writers address. Its project is informed by feminist historiography and gains inspiration from thinkers such as Claudia Rankine, Judith Butler, Giorgio Agamben, Wendy Brown, and Katie Lofton.
The Passion Translation Bible is a new, heart level translation that expresses God's fiery heart of love using Hebrew, Greek, and Aramaic manuscripts-merging the emotion and life changing truth of God's Word. God longs to have his Word expressed in every language in a way that unlocks the passion of his heart. If you're hungry for God and want to know him on a deeper level, The Passion Translation will help you encounter God's heart and discover what he has for your life. This edition includes: In-depth footnotes with insightful study notes, commentary, word studies, cross references, alternate translations, and more Extensive introductions and outlines for each book Traditional two-column format with white space between columns for improved readability Footnotes in single-column format Premium Bible paper with increased thickness and higher opacity Richer, more readable font for greater visibility Translation updates Stunning spot gloss, and deboss on a beautiful pearlescent cover
Encounter the Heart of God. The Passion Translation is a new, heart-level Bible translation that expresses God's fiery heart of love-merging the emotion and life-changing truth of God's Word. God longs to have his Word expressed in every language in a way that unlocks the passion of his heart. The goal of this work is to trigger inside every reader an overwhelming response to the truth of the Bible, unfolding the deep mysteries of the Scriptures in the love language of God, the language of the heart. If you're hungry for God and want to know him on a deeper level, The Passion Translation will help you encounter God's heart and discover what he has for your life.
The familiar and heart-warming story of Christmas is one of hope, encapsulated by the birth of the infant Jesus. It is also a story which unites two faiths which have so often been at odds with one another. The accounts of the Nativity given by the Evangelists Luke and Matthew find their parallels in surahs 3 and 19 of Qur'an which take up of the Annunciation to Maria, the Incarnation from the Holy Spirit and the Nativity - reason enough to investigate these parallel narratives further. From this starting point, Karl-Josef Kuschel begins to look for Christmas in the Qur'an, a challenge for both Christians and Muslims to engage in a deeper dialogue about the fundamental questions of their faiths. By going back to basics, the holy Word, this detailed analysis of the original texts in both the New Testament and the Qur'an is both revealing and thought provoking.
What is truth? This question, asked by Pilate, a Roman governor in Jerusalem, has echoed down through the centuries and still has ramifications today. His job as representative of Rome and Roman law required that he discover out the truth about the charges brought against the prisoner before him. So he asked Jesus. The answer Jesus gives and Pilate's reaction are enlightening. The truthfulness of Jesus' words matter. Will you respond in the same way as Pilate?
The Max Lucado Life Lessons series continues to be one of the bestselling study guide series on the market today. This updated edition of the popular New Testament and Old Testament series will offer readers a complete selection of studies by Max Lucado. Intriguing questions, inspirational storytelling, and profound reflections will bring God's Word to life for both individuals and small-group members. Each session now includes a key passage of Scripture from both the NIV (formerly NCV) and the NKJV, and the guides have been updated to include content from Max's recent releases (2007-2016).
The debunking of the popular myth of St. Paul as the founder of Christianity produced by a respected New Testament authority Challenging the argument put forth by many skeptics of the Catholic Church that Jesus was a great moral teacher whose message was corrupted by St. Paul, this book helps to untangle what scholars know about Jesus and Paul from the overactive imaginations of nonbelievers. Over recent years some critics of Christianity have claimed that while Jesus was a gifted teacher and a man of unparalleled kindness, St. Paul was the true founder of Christianity, which he based on a delusional mistake--the idea that Jesus was God. This theory has found its way into academia, churches, newspapers, and, most recently, novels. Here, respected New Testament scholar David Wenham looks at the historical evidence for such claims. Comparing the life and message of Jesus with the writings of St. Paul, he offers a thoughtful exploration of their relationship, concluding that far from imagining Christianity, Paul was the messenger of an inherited faith.
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