Introto paulletters
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Introto paulletters

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Introto paulletters Introto paulletters Presentation Transcript

  • Paul: From Persecutor to Apostle
    • A Jew
      • From Tarsus (Acts)
      • Circumcised on the eighth day
      • Member of Israel, the tribe of Benjamin
      • Hebrew born of Hebrews (Paul spoke Hebrew?)
      • Pharisee
      • Studied with Rabbi Gamaliel (according to Acts)
    Paul ’s Life
  • Paul’s Life
    • At home in the Gentile world
    • -Paul is the Latin version of Saul
    • -Fluent written (and
    • written) Greek
    • -Roman Citizen (Acts)
    • Operated in cities
      • Ephesus, Corinth, Philippi, and Thessalonica
      • Uses urban metaphors (athlete, citizenship, slave trade, economic transactions)
    Paul ’s Preaching and Mission
  • Paul’s Preaching and Mission
    • Worked with a team of missionaries
      • Timothy and Titus, Silvanus, Phoebe
      • Prisca and Aquilla, Apollos
    • Self-supporting (Paul had a day job)
    • Independent of human authority
    • Suffered for the gospel (2 Cor. 11:24–28)
    • Preached first in synagogues, then went to the agora (Greek marketplace)
    • Three missionary journeys
    • Tentmaker
    Paul ’s Mission according to Acts
  • Paul’s Mission according to Acts
    • Roman citizen
    • Arrested in Jerusalem, bound for Rome
    • Church tradition relates Paul ’s death under Nero in Rome (circa 64 CE)
    • On clay tablets, pottery shards, papyrus pages
    • By amanuensis , or professional secretary
      • Direct dictation
      • Delegate a portion of the letter
    • With co-senders
    Writing Letters
  • Writing Letters
    • Through letter carriers
      • Represent author to receivers
      • Read letter aloud
      • Interpret author ’s wishes and instructions
    • Ancient letters averaged 90 words
    • Philosophers ’ letters averaged 295 words
    • Paul averaged about 1,300 words
    • Letter to the Romans, over 7,000 words
  • Typical Outline of Pauline Letter
    • Greetings
    • Thanksgiving & Prayer
    • Body of Letter
      • Teaching on some issue
      • Parenesis (moral exhortation) – “I urge you”
    • Conclusion
      • Reinforce Purpose of Letter
      • Travel Plans
      • Regards
      • Benediction
  • • Thirteen letters in the NT name Paul as the author. Romans Facts about Paul ’ s Letters I Corinthians II Corinthians Galatians Ephesians Philippians Colossians I Thessalonians II Thessalonians I Timothy II Timothy Titus Philemon • Scholars dispute the Pauline authorship of some of these. letters of undisputed Pauline authorship
  • • Thirteen letters in the NT name Paul as the author. Romans Facts about Paul ’ s Letters I Corinthians II Corinthians Galatians Ephesians Philippians Colossians I Thessalonians II Thessalonians I Timothy II Timothy Titus Philemon • Scholars dispute the Pauline authorship of some of these. letters whose Pauline authorship is disputed by many scholars
  • • Thirteen letters in the NT name Paul as the author. Romans Facts about Paul ’ s Letters I Corinthians II Corinthians Galatians Ephesians Philippians Colossians I Thessalonians II Thessalonians I Timothy II Timothy Titus Philemon • Scholars dispute the Pauline authorship of some of these. letters whose Pauline authorship is denied by most scholars
  • Prison Epistles
    • Ephesians
    • Philippians
    • Colossians
    • Philemon
    • Various levels of authorship
      • Direct, literal, pen in hand and dictated (1 & 2)
      • Delegated to authorized disciple (3)
      • Posthumous and apprentice disciple (4 & 5)
      • Written to honor the original leader (6)
      • Forgery (7)
    • Early church rejected intentional forgery
      • E.g., Paul and Thecla
    Authenticity and Pseudepigrapha
  • Pseudonymity
    • “ In the ancient world, however, twenty first century ideas about authorship would have been irrelevant, for it was then common for disciples of great thinkers to compose works perpetuating their masters’ thoughts. They wrote about contemporary issues as they believed their leader would have if he were still alive.”
    • Harris, The New Testament p. 377
  • Pseudonymity
    • “ Intending to honor an esteemed figure of the past rather than necessarily to deceive the reading public, both Jews and early Christians produced a large body of pseudonymous literature. In an attempt to apply the teachings of a dead prophet or spiritual mentor to current situations, Hellenistic-Jewish authors wrote books ascribed to revered biblical figures….”
    • Harris, The New Testament p. 377
  • Pseudonymity
    • “ Pseudonymity was practiced, but most often as a transparent fiction employing the name of a person long dead and known to be so. Here, in contrast, we have a school producing a letter shortly after Paul’s death, deliberately using signals—his autograph, the network of names—that make the enterprise much more like a deliberate forgery…
    • … The first generation of Christians, furthermore, were very much concerned with the sources of spiritual teaching and with distinguishing between true and false teachers; they did not live in a charismatic fog. ” Johnson, The Writings of The New Testament
    • Is letter intrinsically possible?
    • Is church tradition reliable?
    • Are language and style consistent?
    • Is theology consistent?
    • Are there historical anachronisms?
    • Any biographical discrepancies?
    • Some scholars argue on the basis of individual criteria, others argue on sum of criteria
    Pseudepigraphic Criteria
    • Authorship is inevitably linked to date of composition and local situations
      • Changing authenticity level of authorship requires adjusting time and place of writing
    • Scholars seek to construct a history of early Christianity and a biography of Paul
      • When level of authenticity changes, the available evidence for biographical reconstruction changes
    So What?