Paul: Apostle of the Living God

Overview

In recent years, there has been a significant surge of interest in Paul of Tarsus's God-talk. However, scholars have given little attention to the integral role that the living God epithet—found in 1 Thessalonians 1:9-10; 2 Corinthians 3:3, 6:16; and Romans 9:25-26—plays in Paul's epistolary discourse. By using this language, Paul presents God as an active and dynamic presence in the lives of God's people, delivering them in times of crisis and dwelling with them in their houses...

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Overview

In recent years, there has been a significant surge of interest in Paul of Tarsus's God-talk. However, scholars have given little attention to the integral role that the living God epithet—found in 1 Thessalonians 1:9-10; 2 Corinthians 3:3, 6:16; and Romans 9:25-26—plays in Paul's epistolary discourse. By using this language, Paul presents God as an active and dynamic presence in the lives of God's people, delivering them in times of crisis and dwelling with them in their houses as a sign of covenantal faithfulness.

In Paul, Apostle of the Living God, Mark Goodwin carefully examines the tradition of living God language in biblical, Jewish, and early Christian sources and then demonstrates the ways in which Paul adopted this tradition in his own letters. As he explores Paul's letters and language, Goodwin concludes that the epithet makes Paul's wider argument in 2 Corinthians 2:14-7:4 clearer and more coherent. In the end, Goodwin says, Paul's use of the living God tradition helps us to appreciate Paul's understanding of himself as an apostle of the living God, commissioned and sent out to bring new life to the Gentiles.

Mark J. Goodwin is Assistant Professor of Religion at the University of Dallas.

For: Seminarians; clergy; graduate students and specialists.

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Editorial Reviews

William Baird
On the basis of solid research, Goodwin presents a lucid exposition of a neglected topic. He argues that the epithet "the living God" expresses a crucial element in Paul's kerygma and in his understanding of the Gentile mission. After an analysis of the historical backgrounds—especially in Hellenistic Judaism—Goodwin supports his argument by careful exegesis of the Pauline texts. The result is a significant contribution to the study of the Paul.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781563383182
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Academic
  • Publication date: 3/1/2001
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 272
  • Product dimensions: 5.49 (w) x 8.45 (h) x 0.65 (d)

Meet the Author

Mark J. Goodwin is Assistant Professor of Religion at the University of Dallas.

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Table of Contents

Abbreviations
Acknowledgments
Introduction 1
1 The Living God as Covenantal God of Israel 15
2 Hosea 2:1 LXX [1:10 MT], the New Covenant, and Eschatological Sonship 42
3 The Living God in Hellenistic Jewish Monotheism 65
4 The Living God in Jewish Prayer and Missionary Language 86
5 The Living God in Paul's Monotheistic Kerygma 109
6 Conversion to the Living God in Paul's Letters 140
7 2 Corinthians 3:3 and the Spirit of the Living God 161
8 2 Corinthians 6:16b and the Temple of the Living God 190
9 Implications for Interpreting 2 Corinthians 2:14-7:4 222
Bibliography 231
Index of Ancient Sources 243
General Index 252
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