In This Issue. . . -- By: Robert W. Yarbrough
TRINJ 26:2 (Fall 2005) p. 177
In This Issue. . .
If “Christ-centered” is a generally good thing, this edition of Trinity Journal should be a particularly fine one. For every essay relates more or less directly to Jesus.
Eckhard Schnabel begins with a study of Paul’s preaching of Jesus, particularly at Corinth. Schnabel, whose massive Early Christian Mission (2 vols.; Downers Grove: InterVarsity, 2004) is now the benchmark for historical study of that subject, explores seemingly abstract topics: change, transformation, results. But to think his essay abstract would be mistaken. It was commissioned by Geneva Global (www.genevaglobal.com), a philanthropic consulting firm. Schnabel’s task was to glean from Paul’s work and teaching pointers for helping others in our present war-torn and disaster-plagued world. Many will find the dozen “factors of success” in the essay’s last section to be insightful and highly challenging. “Success,” for Paul, was not what we tend to mean by the term today. For it involved acquiescence to a God whose ways transcend ours, worked through a cross whose logic defies human wisdom and resists man’s manipulation. Schnabel’s exegesis and reflection provide grounds for better strategic planning, along with the sobering insight that God’s good and perfect will, on the one hand, and human schemes for immediate and failsafe world betterment, on the other, may not always be congruent.
Andreas Köstenberger calls attention to the state of flux in which Johannine studies finds itself today. Older “critically assured results” of the discipline, like the existence of the “Johannine school,” have been undermined. There is good ground to doubt J. Louis Martyn’s theory that John 9 and the separation of church and synagogue are the real occasion for John’s Gospel. Köstenberger’s service, however, is not primarily to call attention to older theories that deserve revision: it is to argue for a more plausible historical setting for the rise of the Fourth Gospel. Köstenberger finds the background occasion for John’s writing to be Jerusalem’s destruction in A.D. 70, a momentous event that Köstenberger argues echoes in a number of John’s allusions and strategies. Here is an essay that not only casts constructive doubt on former outlooks but lays groundwork for the development of new and better ones.
The interpretation of all four Gospels hinges on the hermeneutic with which we approach them. In recent decades Gospel research has taken a literary turn, and prominent in discussion have been
TRINJ 26:2 (Fall 2005) p. 178
Hans Frei and Erich Auerbach. Adonis Vidu, a young Ro...
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