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By combining analyses of the historical, cultural and literary features of Judaism and of the Greco-Roman world with careful examination of the writings that became known as the New Testament, this book offers direct insights into the origins of Christianity. It includes religious aspirations of the Mediterranean peoples, including Jews at the turn of the eras, are sketched with detailed analyses of the early Christian writings, and with attention to the social and cultural dimensions of groups by and for whom these works were produced. This book is used throughout the world and is translated into many languages.
Table of Contents
I. COMMUNITY AND IDENTITY.
1.Quest for Community and Identity in the Early Roman Empire.
2. The People of the Book and Their Destiny.
II. THE COMMUNITY OF THE NEW COVENANT.
3. Jesus, Prophet of the New Age.
4. The Beginning of the Gospel: Mark.
5. The True Community of Israel: Matthew.
6. The Mystical Community: The Gospel of John.
7. The Inclusive Community: Luke-Acts.
III. FROM INCLUSIVE COMMUNITY TOWARD UNIFIED INSTITUTION.
8. Paul, Apostle to the Gentiles: Galatians and Romans.
9. Problems in Human Relations Among God's People: 1 and 2 Corinthians, 1 and 2 Thessalonians.
10. Jesus as Lord and as Divine Wisdom: Philippians and Colossians.
IV. THE COMMUNITY ORGANIZES FOR SURVIVAL AND STABILITY.
11. Establishing Authority and Achieving Unity: Letter to the Ephesians and the Pastorals.
12. Encounter with the Roman World: James, Hebrews, 1 Peter, Revelation.
13. Establishing Norms for Faith and Ethics: Letters of John, Jude, 2 Peter.
14. The Early Christian Writings Become the New Testament.
B. A Classification System for Oral Forms in the Synoptic Gospels.
C. The Q Source: A Formal Analysis.
D. Literary Relationships Among the “Prison Epistles.”
E. Authority Models in the Early Church.
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