3 Aspects of Paul’s Moral Ethos: Freedom, Responsibility, and Self-Giving — Excerpt from “Thinking Through Paul”
On Tuesday we examined the question, What kind of thinker was Paul? Today we extend that examination by exploring the end of Paul’s thinking. Because as Bruce Longenecker and Todd Still explain in their new book, Thinking Through Paul, that end isn’t thinking itself, but acting.
Paul’s theological discourse is intricately connected to his attempts to influence the character of Jesus groups and the Jesus-followers within those groups. For Paul, theologizing on the grand scale is never an end in itself, but it serves to inform the kind of people Christians should be and the kind of decisions that they should make in their individual and corporate lives. (pg. 350)
Paul’s theologizing was meant to inspire a moral ethos—an atmosphere which inspired the character of the church. The excerpt below explores three aspects of this…
My Advice to Students — 3 Tips from Bruce Longenecker
(Cant’s see the video? Watch it here)
For today’s advice post, we’ve got a three-piece special from Bruce Longenecker, professor and author of the new book Thinking Through Paul.
We figured since it was the start of a new school year, you needed all the advice you could get!
Longenecker’s three-piece special touches on the theological, the historical, and the linguistic:
Theological: “Avoid buying into the view that history has nothing to do with theology, and theology has nothing to do with history.” Historical: “Any student who wants to explore the world of the New Testament needs to get to the Vesuvius towns of Pompeii and Herculaneum as soon as possible, and as often as possible.” Linguistic: “Learn Latin, to unpack the Greco-Roman world…
What Kind of Thinker Was Paul? Less Theologian, More Theologizer
As a boy, he was fascinated “by Paul’s missionary achievements, particularly his extensive travels and his success in establishing Christianity in Europe.” (TAP, xv)
As a university student, Dunn’s fascination deepened as he began to appreciate Paul as a theologian. “The combination of profound theological reflection and sensitive grappling with all too real human problems, of out-spoken argument and pastoral insight, ‘found me’ at many points.” (TAP, xv)
As a lecturer, he has been “constantly drawn back to him” and has “probed more and more aspects of Paul’s theology.”
Dunn’s retrospective on his relationship with Paul mirrors the feelings…