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Insiders versus Outsiders


Exploring the Dynamic Relationship Between Mission and Ethos in the New Testament


Christianity as a movement developed within the already established, but volatile Jewish movement/religion, expressing a profound sense of inclusivism illustrated in the transcendence of social boundaries. In this book the dynamic reality of creating and transcending boundaries and the relationship between insiders and outsiders are explored by way of reflecting on mission and ethos.
Publisher: Gorgias Press LLC
Availability: In stock
SKU (ISBN): 978-1-4632-0257-6
  • *
Publication Status: In Print

Publication Date: Apr 20,2014
Interior Color: Black
Trim Size: 6 x 9
Page Count: 305
Language: English
ISBN: 978-1-4632-0257-6
$158.00
$94.80

In times of conflict and radical change, group identity is often threatened and boundaries need to be renegotiated. The first century was a time of radical change, especially for the Jews. It was in the first century C.E. that the core symbol of Jewish identity, the temple, was destroyed. Social scientists point out that in such turbulent times, groups will often create stronger boundaries around themselves. In such contexts boundaries between insiders and outsiders are created and in ancient texts, expressed in linguistic forms that illustrate such boundaries. Christianity as a movement developed within the already established, but volatile Jewish movement/religion. As a movement Christianity expressed a profound sense of inclusivism and illustrated that value in the transcendence of social boundaries. However, Christianity was also a moral movement, as Wayne Meeks once remarked, and therefore also created boundaries. This is expressed in linguistic expressions, such as to say that the in-group are the pistoi (believers) to be distinguished from the apistoi (the unbelievers). In this book the dynamic reality of creating and transcending boundaries and the relationship between insiders and outsiders are explored by way of reflecting on mission and ethos. Mission is understood as the expansion of early Christianity which was experienced as a (missionary) call or responsibility to share a particular view on God and life. Ethos is understood as the language and behaviour that flowed forth from a missionary understanding of identity.

Prof. Jacobus (Kobus) Kok is Associate Professor of New Testament Studies at the University of Pretoria and Doctoral Researcher in Religious Studies at the Radboud University Nijmegen in the Netherlands.

John Anthony Dunne is a Doctoral Student under the supervision of Prof. N.T. Wright at the University of St Andrews in Scotland.

In times of conflict and radical change, group identity is often threatened and boundaries need to be renegotiated. The first century was a time of radical change, especially for the Jews. It was in the first century C.E. that the core symbol of Jewish identity, the temple, was destroyed. Social scientists point out that in such turbulent times, groups will often create stronger boundaries around themselves. In such contexts boundaries between insiders and outsiders are created and in ancient texts, expressed in linguistic forms that illustrate such boundaries. Christianity as a movement developed within the already established, but volatile Jewish movement/religion. As a movement Christianity expressed a profound sense of inclusivism and illustrated that value in the transcendence of social boundaries. However, Christianity was also a moral movement, as Wayne Meeks once remarked, and therefore also created boundaries. This is expressed in linguistic expressions, such as to say that the in-group are the pistoi (believers) to be distinguished from the apistoi (the unbelievers). In this book the dynamic reality of creating and transcending boundaries and the relationship between insiders and outsiders are explored by way of reflecting on mission and ethos. Mission is understood as the expansion of early Christianity which was experienced as a (missionary) call or responsibility to share a particular view on God and life. Ethos is understood as the language and behaviour that flowed forth from a missionary understanding of identity.

Prof. Jacobus (Kobus) Kok is Associate Professor of New Testament Studies at the University of Pretoria and Doctoral Researcher in Religious Studies at the Radboud University Nijmegen in the Netherlands.

John Anthony Dunne is a Doctoral Student under the supervision of Prof. N.T. Wright at the University of St Andrews in Scotland.

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Contributor

Jacobus Kok

John Anthony Dunne

Pieter Venter

Athanasios Despotis

Christoph Stenschke

Ernest van Eck

Marius Nel

Rob Van Houwelingen

Ronald van den Bergh

  • Table of Contents (page 5)
  • Acknowledgments (page 7)
  • 1. Insiders versus outsiders: Exploring the dynamic relationship between mission and ethos in the New Testament - An introduction (by Jacobus (Kobus) Kok) (page 9)
    • Determining boundaries: Christianity as a movement within Judaism (page 10)
    • Sensitivity towards outsiders from the very start (page 13)
    • Drawing and transcending boundaries (page 15)
    • Overview of the book (page 17)
    • Bibliography (page 21)
  • 2. Inclusivism and exlusivism: A study of two trends in the Old Testament (by Pieter M. Venter) (page 23)
    • Introduction (page 24)
    • Van Ruler (page 25)
      • Van Ruler's contribution (page 25)
      • Van Ruler's perspective on mission (page 26)
      • The background of Van Ruler's view (page 31)
    • The apparent preference for inclusivity in the New Testament (page 35)
    • The Old Testament: exclusive as well as inclusive (page 37)
      • Exclusivism in the Old Testament (page 38)
      • Inclusivism in the Old Testament (page 44)
    • Conclusion (page 52)
    • Bibliography (page 54)
  • 3. Inclusivity as the essential nature of the Gospel (by Ernest van Eck) (page 57)
    • Different groups (ethnicities) in the New Testament (page 57)
    • Cultural identity (page 59)
      • An introduction to ethnicity (page 59)
      • Ethnicity: A social-scientific model (page 63)
    • Jewish ethnicity: An exclusive God (page 69)
    • Jesus: God is inclusive (page 74)
    • Paul and ethnicity (page 78)
      • Ethnic conflict in Philippians, 2 Corinthians, and Galatians (page 78)
      • Acts (page 84)
    • Conclusion (page 86)
    • Bibliography (page 88)
  • 4. Mission and ethics: Sensitivity to outsiders in Matthew (by Marius Nel) (page 93)
    • Introduction (page 93)
    • The Matthean community (page 94)
    • Insiders and outsiders (page 96)
    • New boundaries (page 97)
    • An inclusive community? (page 100)
    • Sensitivity and separation (page 103)
    • The righteousness of the kingdom (page 105)
    • Summary (page 109)
    • Bibliography (page 109)
  • 5. Exploring a common background of Paul and 'John': Mission and conversion (by Athanasios Despotis) (page 113)
    • Introduction (page 113)
      • Preliminary considerations on the concepts 'mission' and 'conversion' (page 114)
    • The historical context of Paul and "John" (page 116)
    • Paul (page 117)
      • The relationship with Christianity (page 117)
      • The profile of the missionary Paul and his commission (page 119)
      • Obedience and disobedience to the gospel (page 122)
      • The missionary team and the Community (page 123)
      • The concept of conversion and the conversionist community (page 124)
    • "John" (page 127)
      • Mission and eschatological community (page 127)
      • The mission of the Son and the Spirit (page 131)
      • Narratives with a missionary background (page 132)
      • Divine agency and mission (page 135)
      • The conversion and the conversionist community (page 136)
    • Comparison (page 140)
    • Bibliography (page 148)
  • 6. Doing Good to All: Perspectives on Mission and Ethics in Galatians (by Jacobus (Kobus) Kok) (page 153)
    • Introduction (page 154)
    • Mapping the field: Clarification of important concepts idenity, ethics, ethos and mission (page 158)
    • The dynamics of mission in Paul (page 161)
    • God the sender sends Paul the missionary (page 164)
    • An ontological transformation with universalistic implications (page 167)
    • Regression into old thinking patterns (page 173)
    • Ethics of freedom: missionary by nature (page 176)
    • Conclusion (page 180)
    • Bibliography (page 182)
  • 7. Mission and Ethics in 1 Corinthians: Reconciliation, corporate solidarity, and other-regard as missionary strategy in Paul (by Jacobus (Kobus) Kok) (page 187)
    • Conflict over identity and ethos in Corinthians (page 188)
    • Inter-congregational diversity and conflict (page 192)
    • the conflict managements strategy of Paul: Unity, Diversity and Ethical reciprocity (1 Cor 10:23-24 and 1 Cor 12:13) (page 193)
    • The boundaries of sexuality and unity in 1 Cor 5:1-13 (page 199)
    • 1 Corinthians 11:2-16 - Paul on boundaries and Christian gender ethos (page 205)
    • 1 Corinthians 11:17-34 - Intra-congregational status divisions (page 208)
    • 1 Corinthians 6:1-8 - Extra-congregational conflict between believers (page 209)
    • 1 Corinthians 8:1-13 - The epitome of other-regard (page 210)
    • Conclusion (page 214)
    • Bibliography (page 215)
  • 8. 'Holding forth the word of life': Philippians 2:16a and other references to Paul's understanding of the involvement of early Christian communities in spreading the Gospel (by Christoph Stenschke) (page 219)
    • Introduction (page 220)
    • 'Holding out' or 'holding forth' (page 220)
    • 'Holding forth the word of life' in the wider context of Paul's Gentile mission (page 224)
    • Paul's expectation of support from local congregations for his mission (page 225)
    • Paul's expectation of congregational involvement in evangelism (page 231)
    • Conclusion (page 242)
    • Bibliography (page 243)
  • 9. Mission and Ethics in the Epistle to the Hebrews: Faith means Perseverance (by Rob van Houwelingen) (page 247)
    • Introduction (page 247)
    • Aim of the Letter (page 249)
      • The temple as marker (page 249)
      • A word of exhortation (page 250)
      • Shift in thinking (page 251)
      • Review (page 252)
    • Main focus of the Letter (page 253)
      • Theme of the sermon (page 253)
      • The superior high priest (page 254)
      • Atonement in Hebrews (page 255)
      • Jesus Christ is always the same (page 257)
    • Christian life in the letter (page 258)
      • Spoken to by God (page 258)
      • Good courage and confidence in persecution (page 259)
      • Peace with all men (page 260)
      • Care for each other (page 261)
      • A forward looking life (page 262)
    • Conclusion (page 264)
    • Bibliography (page 265)
  • 10. Insiders or Outsiders? The use of the term 'ß??ßa???' in the Acts of the Apostles: A Problemanzeige (by Ronald H. van der Bergh) (page 269)
    • Introduction (page 269)
    • The problematic use of the term ß??ßa??? in Acts 28:1-10 (page 272)
      • Paul's (and Luke's) possible lesser concern for missionary activity among the ß??ßa??? (page 272)
      • The possibly naïve nature of the ß??ßa??? (page 275)
      • Luke's possible predilection for selected people groups (page 276)
    • Proposed trajectories for understanding use of the term ß??ßa??? in Acts 28:1-10 (page 280)
      • The term as a purely linguistic and cultural marker (page 281)
      • The term as a marker of the ?s?at?? t?? ??? ('end of the earth') (page 281)
      • The term as designation of the inhabitants of the island as literary props on Paul's way to Rome (page 283)
      • The term as a marker of the next stage of Christian missionary activity (page 284)
    • Conclusion (page 285)
    • Bibliography (page 285)
  • Index of Biblical References (page 291)
    • Old Testament (page 291)
    • New Testament (page 292)
  • Index of Modern Authors (page 299)
  • Subject Index (page 305)
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