Introduction To The New Testament

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The word count must be at least 1100 words and three scholarly references in APA format. ( References does not count towards word count!!)

1. Define the term pseudonymity and explain its practice among Hellenistic-Jewish and early Christian writers.

2. In what specific ways concerning Jesus’ return does II Thessalonians differ from Paul’s first letter to the Thessalonians? Why do some scholars think that it was written after Paul’s death?

3. Summarize the arguments for and against Paul’s authorship of Colossians.

4. What is the relationship that Paul seems to think best describes the union between the Church and Christ in the book of Ephesians? What are the implications for Christians in this union?

5. Why do scholars think that the pastoral letters were written by a later churchman? Why do these letters emphasize tradition so much and spend so much time combating heresy.

6. Hebrews chapter 11 is often called the “Hall of Faith”. Who are some of the more recognizable figures in this chapter and how do they exhibit faith?

7. What first century heresy might the book of I John be a response to? What language/images does the author use to indicate that he is opposing this heresy?

8. Define the term apocalypse as a literary genre, and explain how the Book of Revelation unveils realities of the unseen spirit world and previews future events.

9. Identify and explain some of the myths of cosmic conflict that John incorporates into his vision of the universal struggle between good and evil.

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har19138_ch17_386-402.indd Page 386 09/01/14 8:06 PM user /204/MH02032/har19138_disk1of1/0078119138/har19138_pagefiles cha pt er 17 Continuing the Pauline Tradition 2 Thessalonians, Colossians, Ephesians, and the Pastoral Epistles M I Stand firm . . . and hold fast to the traditions which you have L 2 Thessalonians 2:15 learned from us by word or letter. E S Keep before you an outline of the sound teaching which you heard from me. . . . Guard the treasure [apostolic tradition] put, into our charge. 2 Timothy 1:13–14 Key Topics/Themes Paul’s continuing influence on the church was so great after his death that various Pauline disciples composed letters in his name and spirit, claiming his authority to settle new issues besetting the Christian community. Whereas a minority of scholars defend Pauline authorship of 2 Thessalonians and Colossians, a large majority are certain that he did not write Ephesians, 1 or 2 Timothy, or Titus. Repeating themes from Paul’s genuine letter to the Thessalonians, 2 Thessalonians reinterprets Paul’s original eschatology, asserting that a number of traditional apocalyptic “signs” must precede the eschaton. In Colossians, a close Pauline disciple emphasizes Jesus’ identification with the cosmic Six canonical letters in which the author explicitly identifies himself as Paul, Apostle to the Gentiles, contain discrepancies that cause scholars to question their Pauline authorship. Two of the letters—2 Thessalonians and Colossians—are still vigorously disputed, with a large minority 386 S H power and wisdom by and for which the A universe was created. The divine “secret” is N revealed as Christ’s Spirit dwelling in the N believer. A deutero-Pauline composition, Ephesians contains ideas similar to those in O Colossians, revising and updating Pauline N concepts about God’s universal plan of salvation for both Jews and Gentiles and about believers’ spiritual warfare with supernatural evil. 1 Writing to Timothy and Titus as symbols of 9a new generation of Christians, an anonymous (known as the Pastor) warns his 0disciple readers against false teachings (heresy). He 9urges them to adhere strictly to the original Tapostolic traditions, supported by the Hebrew Bible and the church. S championing their authenticity. But an overwhelming scholarly majority deny that Paul wrote the four others—Ephesians, 1 and 2 Timothy, and Titus. The latter three are called the pastoral epistles because the writer—as a pastor or shepherd— offers guidance and advice to his flock, the church. har19138_ch17_386-402.indd Page 387 09/01/14 8:06 PM user /204/MH02032/har19138_disk1of1/0078119138/har19138_pagefiles ch ap te r 17 co n ti n u i n g th e p au l i n e trad i ti o n According to tradition, Paul wrote 2 Thessalonians shortly after his first letter to believers at Thessalonica, and Ephesians and Colossians while imprisoned in Rome. After being released, he traveled to Crete, only to be thrown again in prison a second time (2 Tim.). During this second and final incarceration, the apostle supposedly composed these farewell letters to his trusted associates, Timothy and Titus, young men who represent a new generation of Christian leadership. Since the eighteenth century, however, scholars have increasingly doubted Paul’s responsibility for either Ephesians or the pastorals. More recently, they have also suspected that both 2 Thessalonians and Colossians are the work of later authors who adopted Paul’s persona. Detailed analyses of four of the six documents—Ephesians and the pastorals— strongly indicate that they were composed significantly after Paul’s time. The Problem of Pseudonymity The author of 2 Thessalonians tells his readers not to become overly excited if they receive a letter falsely bearing Paul’s name, indicating that the practice of circulating forged documents purportedly by apostolic writers had already begun (2 Thess. 2:1–3). Known as pseudonymity, the practice of creating new works in the name of a famous deceased author was widespread in both Hellenistic Judaism and early Christianity. From about 200 bce to 200 ce, Jewish writers produced a host of books ascribed to such revered biblical figures as Daniel, Enoch, Noah, David, Solomon, Isaiah, Ezra, and Moses. Some pseudonymous works, such as the Book of Daniel, were accepted into the Hebrew Bible canon; others, such as 1 Enoch (quoted as scripture in the canonical letter of Jude), were not. Still others, including the Wisdom of Solomon, Baruch, and the apocalyptic 2 Esdras, were regarded as deuterocanonical, part of the Old Testament’s “second canon.” 387 Disputed and Pseudonymous Letters Authorship, date, and place of composition of the disputed and pseudonymous letters are unknown. If 2 Thessalonians and Colossians are by Paul, the former was written about 50 ce and the latter perhaps a decade later. Ephesians, which incorporates ideas from some genuine Pauline letters, may have originated about 90 ce. The pastoral epistles were probably composed during the early decades of the second century ce by a Pauline disciple eager to use the apostle’s legacy to enforce church tradition and organizational structure. M Most scholars today view several books in I the New Testament as pseudonymous, the L productions of unknown Christians who adE opted the Jewish literary convention of writing S under an assumed identity. Scholars question , the authenticity of not only six of the Pauline letters but also of the seven catholic epistles, documents ascribed to the “pillars” of the S Jerusalem church whom Paul mentions in H Galatians: James, John, and Peter, as well as the letter of Jude, James’s putative brother A (Gal. 2:9; see Chapter 18). In wrestling with N the problem of pseudonymity in the early N church, many scholars assume that pseudonyauthors wrote not to deceive but to perO mous petuate the thoughts of an apostle, to address N later situations in the Christian community as they believed Peter or Paul would have if he 1 were still alive. According to a common view, twenty-first century principles about the integ9 rity of authorship were irrelevant in the Jewish 0 and Greco-Roman worlds. In this view, ancient 9 society tended to tolerate the practice of pseudonymity, a custom in which disciples of T great thinkers were free to compose works in S their respective masters’ names. Other scholars strongly disagree, pointing out that what little evidence we have of the early church’s recorded attitude toward pseudonymous writing does not support the notion that it was tolerated. When a short missive purporting to be Paul’s third letter to the Corinthians appeared, probably in the latter half of the second century ce, a few Christian groups apparently har19138_ch17_386-402.indd Page 388 12/01/14 3:37 PM user 388 /204/MH02032/har19138_disk1of1/0078119138/har19138_pagefiles p a r t fi ve pa ul and the paul i n e trad i ti o n accepted it. By insisting that the resurrection was a bodily phenomenon, 3 Corinthians was useful in combating the Gnostics, who denigrated all forms of material existence. The church as a whole, however, denounced the work as a forgery and removed from office the bishop who confessed to writing it. Tertullian, a church leader of the late second and early third centuries ce, claimed that the author of the spurious Acts of Paul and Thecla, when discovered, was similarly stripped of his position. (See the discussion of the Paul and Thecla narrative in Chapter 20.) Whereas some scholars believe that no work suspected of being pseudonymous would have been admitted to the canon, others argue that in the late first century and early decades of the second, documents attributed to Paul or other apostles—provided that they were theologically consistent with a celebrated leader’s known ideas—could be assimilated into Christian Scripture. How believers react to the claim that a number of books in the New Testament were written by someone other than their ostensible authors typically depends on a reader’s concept of biblical authority. For some people, the proposal that unknown Christians falsely assumed Paul’s identity is ethically unacceptable on the grounds that such forgeries could not become part of the Bible. Other believers may ask if the value of a disputed or pseudonymous book is based on its traditional link to the “apostolic” generation. Is it “apostolic” authorship only that justifies a document’s place in the New Testament canon? Or is it a book’s ethical and theological content that makes it valuable, regardless of who wrote it? Perhaps most important, if a particular writing is a forgery—a work falsely claiming Paul, Peter, or James as its author—does that authorial deception invalidate its message, especially if its contents are useful to the Christian life? (See Bart Ehrman in “Recommended Reading.”) We can only speculate about the motives that inspired pseudonymous Christian writers, but some may have wished to obtain a respectful hearing for their views that only a letter by Paul, Peter, or James could command. Some Pauline disciples, perhaps even some who were listed as coauthors in the genuine letters, may have wished, after Paul’s death, to address problems as they believed Paul would have. The fact that the historical Paul usually employed a secretary or amanuensis to whom he dictated his thoughts—and that in the ancient world an amanuensis supposedly rephrased dictation in his own style—further complicates the problem of authorship. Scholars defending the authenticity of disputed letters, M such as 2 Thessalonians, Colossians, or 1 Peter, Itend to emphasize the roles that different secreLtaries played in shaping these documents. Other critics suggest that pseudonymous authors may E have incorporated fragments of otherwise unS known letters that Paul or Peter actually com,posed. As the readings for this chapter and the next indicate, scholarly speculation about plausible theories of authorship, genuine and pseuS donymous, abounds. In studying the literature dubiously attributed to Paul or fellow leaders of H the early church, readers will exercise their own A judgments about authenticity. Whatever their N degree of skepticism, they may conclude that Colossians is worthy of the apostle or that, if Paul N wrote the Pastorals, they are a disappointing end O to a brilliant writing career. N Second Letter 1 to the Thessalonians 9 0 9An increasing number of scholars are skeptical about the genuineness of 2 Thessalonians. If TPaul actually composed it, why does he repeat— almost verbatim—so much of what he had S already just written to the same recipients? More seriously, why does the author present an eschatology so different from that presented in the first letter? In 1 Thessalonians, the Parousia will occur stealthily, “like a thief in the night.” In 2 Thessalonians, a number of apocalyptic “signs” will first advertise its arrival. The interposing of har19138_ch17_386-402.indd Page 389 09/01/14 8:06 PM user /204/MH02032/har19138_disk1of1/0078119138/har19138_pagefiles ch ap te r 17 co n ti n u i n g th e p au l i n e trad i ti o n these mysterious events between the writer’s time and that of the Parousia has the effect of placing the eschaton further into the future—unlike in 1 Thessalonians, where the End is extremely close. Scholars defending Pauline authorship advance several theories to explain the writer’s apparent change of attitude toward the Parousia. In the first letter, Paul underscores the tension between the shortness of time the world has left and the necessity of believers’ vigilance and ethical purity as they await the Second Coming. In the second missive, Paul writes to correct the Thessalonians’ misconceptions about or misuses of his earlier emphasis on the nearness of End time. If Paul is in fact the author, he probably wrote 2 Thessalonians within a few months of his earlier letter. Some converts, claiming that “the Day of the Lord is already here” (2:2), were upsetting others with their otherworldly enthusiasms. In their state of apocalyptic fervor, some even scorned everyday occupations and refused to work or support themselves. It is possible that the visionary Spirit of prophecy that Paul encouraged the Thessalonians to cultivate (1 Thess. 5:19–22) had come back to haunt him. Empowered by private revelations, a few Christian prophets may have interpreted the Spirit’s presence—made possible by Jesus’ resurrection and ascension to heaven—as a mystical fulfillment of the Parousia. According to this belief in presently realized eschatology, the Lord’s Day is now. Paul, however, consistently emphasizes that Jesus’ resurrection and the Spirit’s coming are only the first stage in God’s plan of cosmic renewal. God’s purpose can be completed only at the apocalyptic End of history. Placing the Second Coming in Perspective In 2 Thessalonians, Paul (or some other writer building on his thought) takes on the difficult task of urging Christians to be ever alert and prepared for the Lord’s return and at the same time to remember that certain events 389 must take place before the Second Coming can occur. The writer achieves this delicate balance partly by insisting on a rational and practical approach to life during the unknown interim between his writing and the Parousia. In introducing his apocalyptic theme, the author invokes a vivid image of the Final Judgment to imprint its imminent reality on his readers’ consciousness. He paraphrases images from the Hebrew prophets to imply that persons now persecuting Christians will soon suffer God’s wrath. Christ will be revealed from heaven amid blazing M fire, overthrowing those who disobey Jesus’ I gospel or fail to honor the one God (1:1–12). Having assured the Thessalonians that their L present opponents will be punished at Jesus’ reE turn, Paul (or a disciple) now admonishes them S not to assume that the punishment will happen , immediately. Believers are not to run wild over some visionary’s claim that the End is already here. Individual prophetic revelations declaring S that Jesus is now invisibly present were apparH ently strengthened when a letter—supposedly from Paul—conveyed the same or a similar mesA sage. (This pseudo-Pauline letter reveals that the N practice of composing letters in Paul’s name beN gan very early in Christian history.) Speculations on private revelations or forged letters, O founded the apostle points out, are doomed to disappoint N those who fall for them (2:1–3). 1 Traditional (Non-Pauline?) 9 Signs of the End 0 As mentioned previously, one of the strongest 9 arguments against Paul’s authorship of 2 Thessalonians is the letter’s presentation of T eschatological events that presage the End. S Although the writer argues for the Parousia’s imminence (1:6–10), he also insists that the final day cannot arrive until certain developments characteristic of Jewish apocalyptic thought have occurred. At this point, 2 Thessalonians reverts to the cryptic and veiled language of apocalyptic discourse, referring to mysterious personages and events that may have been har19138_ch17_386-402.indd Page 390 09/01/14 8:06 PM user 390 /204/MH02032/har19138_disk1of1/0078119138/har19138_pagefiles p a r t fi ve pa ul and the paul i n e trad i ti o n understood by the letter’s recipients but that are largely incomprehensible to contemporary readers. The End cannot come before the final rebellion against God’s rule, when evil is revealed in human form as a demonic enemy who desecrates the Temple and claims divinity for himself. In this passage, Paul’s terminology resembles that contained in the Book of Daniel, an apocalyptic work denouncing Antiochus IV, a Greek-Syrian king who polluted the Jerusalem Temple and tried to destroy the Jewish religion (see Chapter 5). Some commentators suggest that Paul regards the Roman emperor, whose near-absolute power gave him virtually unlimited potential for inflicting evil on humankind, as a latter-day counterpart of Antiochus. Paul’s explicitly stated view of the Roman government, however, is positive (Rom. 13), so readers must look elsewhere to identify the doomed figure. Reminding the Thessalonians that he had previously informed them orally of these apocalyptic developments, Paul states that the mysterious enemy’s identity will not be disclosed until the appointed time. This is an allusion to the typically apocalyptic belief that all history is predestined: Events cannot occur before their divinely predetermined hour. Evil forces are already at work, however, secretly gathering strength until the unidentified “Restrainer” disappears, allowing the evil personage to reveal himself. Apocalyptic Dualism In this passage, the writer paints a typically apocalyptic worldview, a moral dualism in which the opposing powers of good and evil have their respective agents at work on earth. The enemy figure is Satan’s agent; his opposite is Christ. As Jesus is God’s representative working in human history, so the wicked rebel is the devil’s tool. Operating on a cosmic scope, the conflict between good and evil culminates in Christ’s victory over his enemy, who has deceived the mass of humanity into believing the “lie.” (This is, perhaps, the false belief that any being other than God is the source of humanity’s ultimate welfare.) An evil parody of the Messiah, the unnamed satanic dupe functions as an anti-Christ (2:3–12). The writer’s language is specific enough to arouse speculation about the identities of the enigmatic “wicked man” and the “Restrainer” who at the time of writing kept the anti-Christ in check. It is also vague enough to preclude connecting any known historical figures with these eschatological roles. In typical apocalyptic fashion, the figures are mythic archetypes that belong to a realm beyond the reach of historical investigation. M I A Disputed Letter L to the Colossians E S ,If Paul is the author of Colossians, as a large minority of scholars believe, he had not yet visited the city when he wrote this theologically S important letter. A small town in the Roman province of Asia, Colossae was located about H 100 miles east of Ephesus, the provincial capital A (see Figure 16.1). Epaphras, one of Paul’s misN sionary associates, had apparently founded the church a short time prior to Paul’s writing (1:7). N If genuine, Colossians was probably comO posed at about the same time as Philemon, to N which it is closely related. In both letters, Paul writes from prison, including his friend Timothy 1in the salutation (1:1) and adding greetings from many of the same persons—such as 9Onesimus, Archippus, Aristarchus, Epaphras, 0Mark, and Luke—cited in the earlier missive 9(4:9–18). If Philemon’s was the house church at Colossae, it is strange that Paul does not menTtion him, but his absence from the letter does not discredit Pauline authorship. S Purpose and Organization Although it was not one of his churches, Paul (or one of his later disciples) writes to the Colossae congregation to correct some false teachings prevalent there. These beliefs apparently involved cults that gave undue honor to har19138_ch17_386-402.indd Page 391 09/01/14 8:06 PM user /204/MH02032/har19138_disk1of1/0078119138/har19138_pagefiles ch ap te r 17 co n ti n u i n g th e p au l i n e trad i ti o n angels or other invisible spirits inhabiting the universe. Some Colossians may have attempted to worship beings that the angels themselves worshiped. Paul refutes these “hollow and delusive” notions by emphasizing Christ’s uniqueness and supremacy. Christ alone is the channel to spiritual reality; lesser spirit beings are merely his “captives.” The author’s purpose is to make sure that ...
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School: Carnegie Mellon University

Hello buddy,Here you go, Kindly check it out and let me know if you need any edits. Please note that I used the pdf file you provided me with but I did not reference it because I did not have the actual name of the book where it was extracted from.

Running head: NEW TESTAMENT


Introduction To The New Testament


Introduction To The New Testament

Pseudonymity is that particular act of making a creation of new works, based on the name
of a well-known dead author. In the early Christian writing and in Hellenistic Judaism, the
concept was commonly used. In this context, Pseudonymity was used in such a way that ideas, as
well as thoughts of a certain author, were expressed in such a way as if the author was still alive.
Some interpreters may classify this act as a way of deceiving readers though it was actually
meant to show praise as well as an appreciation for the author’s work. Evidence from 3rd
Corinthians suggests that these writing skills were tolerated by some Christian groups but the
general acceptance at that time is not clear. On the other hand, Pseudonymity makes it difficult
for experts to make a confirmation of authorship of most of the writing at that time.
In 1st Thessalonians, the author leas readers to believe that the end is very near and it will
come in a sudden way without people realizing. This suggestion is very different from how 2nd
Thessalonians which has a very different concept of the coming of Jesus Christ as well as the
end. 2nd Thessalonians state...

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Tutor went the extra mile to help me with this essay. Citations were a bit shaky but I appreciated how well he handled APA styles and how ok he was to change them even though I didnt specify. Got a B+ which is believable and acceptable.

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