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Title: New existence and righteous living in Colossians and 1 Peter in conversation with 4QInstruction and the Hodayot
Author: Cavin, Robert Lloyd
ISNI:       0000 0004 1710 819X
Awarding Body: Durham University
Current Institution: Durham University
Date of Award: 2010
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The present study consists of a comparison of the impact of the Christ-event on the existence of the elect in Colossians and 1 Peter. As such it is a study in the theological anthropology of two significant New Testament texts. The main argument of this thesis is that Colossians and 1 Peter contain distinctive emphases in their understanding of: the σάρξ (“flesh”) of the elect (anthropology), the temporal axis of salvation (eschatology), the extent to which the elect participate in the “heavenly” sphere (cosmology), and the means to live rightly (agency). Because a NT author’s beliefs prior to faith in Christ reflect a particular cognitive environment formed by the author’s historical setting and cultural milieu, setting the author’s views in the context of Early Jewish texts throws fresh light on his thought-world and understanding of the new existence. I argue that many of the features distinguishing Colossians from 1 Peter stem from the possibility that Colossians reflects the thought-world of 4QInstruction and 1 Peter that of the Hodayot. The thesis has the following structure. Chapter 1 explains the reasoning for comparing Colossians and 1 Peter by showing their manifold similarities with one another including their respective Christologies which undergird their remarkably similar paraenetical material. The question is raised why, if the epistles end up offering almost identical paraenesis, they have such distinctive theological patterns of thought. Chapter 2 is an overview of scholarship demonstrating that this question has not been adequately answered. This is due partly to an emphasis on the recipient context and to reading each respective author’s theology primarily as a response to the Sitz im Leben of the recipients. The overview will also demonstrate that both authors draw from the HB and EJL to interpret the impact of the Christ-event, but do so with distinctive language, emphases, and metaphors. Chapter 3 will analyze 1 Peter’s understanding of the new existence locating it within the author’s worldview in which suffering is a significant aspect of being God’s ‘end of days’ people. Chapter 4 will explore the Hodayot and demonstrate the manifold ways in which it provides antecedents to ideas identified in 1 Peter. Chapter 5 will analyze the worldview of the author of Colossians and his understanding of the new existence including his emphasis on the elect as possessing the “mystery” of God. Chapter 6 will explore 4QInstruction and demonstrate the manifold ways in which it provides antecedents to ideas identified in Colossians. Chapter 7 will conclude the thesis drawing the threads together and summarizing the distinctive emphases of Colossians and 1 Peter in their respective understandings of the new existence and the means to live rightly.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available