Abstracts Of Recent WTS Doctoral Dissertations -- By: Anonymous
WTJ 74:2 (Fall 2012) p. 435
Abstracts Of Recent WTS Doctoral Dissertations
The Wilderness Motif In John 3:1–21 And Its Impact On Johannine Signs And Faith: An Intertextual Case Study
Daniel Hastings Fletcher
This dissertation is an intertextual analysis of John 3:1–21 and the wilderness narratives of LXX Numbers. It examines Jesus’ dialogue with Nicodemus against the background of God’s testing of Israel in the forty year wilderness sojourn. It also addresses the complex relationship between signs and faith in John’s Gospel as one of divine testing based on Deut 4:34; 8:2, 16. Seeing signs and believing in Christ is analogous to Israel’s wilderness experience: The Israelites were continually confronted with God’s miraculous signs (Num 14:11, 22), yet many failed to believe in him as their Protector and Provider. Signs ultimately revealed the hard hearts of those who lacked the faith to see them rightly. So also in John, many reject Jesus’ signs due to hardness of heart while others respond in faith. In the OT, the first generation was faithless and died in the wilderness while the second generation entered the Promised Land. So also in John, those who reject Jesus are condemned (3:18) while those who believe come into the light (3:21).
This dissertation places special emphasis on John’s use of the uplifted copper serpent narrative in Num 21:8–9 LXX. John understands the copper serpent as a sign that tested the faith of the wilderness community. The Jewish and Christian interpretive tradition of the narrative explains that the people who were bitten by poisonous serpents believed that God was the source of healing rather than the serpent. Therefore, John appeals to the serpent narrative to illustrate that faith is the prerequisite to interpret Jesus’ signs rightly as indicators of his identity and messianic mission. As signs were tests of faith in the wilderness sojourn, they also function as tests of faith in John’s Gospel. The copper serpent narrative, along with its interpretive tradition, illustrates that faith-seeing is the interpretive key for unlocking the complex relationship between seeing signs and believing in John’s Gospel.
WTJ 74:2 (Fall 2012) p. 436
An Exposition And Examination Of Theodoret Of Cyrus’s Christology: A Reformed Critique
Joseph T. Dyaji
This dissertation examines, explains, and cr...
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