The Pauline Church and the Corinthian Ekklēsia: Greco-Roman Associations in Comparative Context
Moving past earlier descriptions of first-century Christ groups that were based on examining the New Testament in isolation from extant sources produced by analogous cult groups throughout Mediterranean antiquity, this book engages with underexplored epigraphic and papyrological records and situates the behaviour of Paul's Corinthian ekklēsia within broader patterns of behaviour practised by Greco-Roman associations. Richard Last's comparative analysis generates highly original contributions to our understanding of the social history of the Jesus movement: he shows that the Corinthians were a small group who had no fixed meeting place, who depended on financial contributions from all ten members in order to survive, and who attracted recruits by offering social benefits such as crowns and office-holding that made other ancient cult groups successful. This volume provides a much-needed robust alternative to the traditional portrayal of Pauline Christ groups as ecclesiastically egalitarian, devoid of normative honorific practices, and free for the poor.
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AGRW ancient Ascough Asia Minor Athens attested Attica banquet benefaction Brookins Cambridge Chapter Christ believers Christ group civic club’s Collegia Commentary Community context contributions Corinth Corinthian ekklēsia Corinthian group cult groups cultic drachmas Early Christianity economically modest Eerdmans Egypt elected Epistle fees Frag.2 recto Friesen fund Gaius Gerd Theissen GrecoRoman associations Greek guest guild Harland Hellenistic Hierarchie honour host House Church household IG II2 Jerusalem Jerusalem collection Jesus movement John John Kloppenborg Judean Klauck Kloppenborg Lanuvium leadership London Longenecker magistrates meals Meeks meeting membership modest associations Mohr Siebeck Neuen Testament officers organisational Oxyrhynchos P.Tebt papyri Paul Paul’s Pauline Christ Pauline Christianity Pauline groups Philadelphia Piraeus practices recruits regular members Richard Roman Schmeller silver drachmas socalled social status Studies subscription dues surplus economic Synagogue Tebtynis Texts Theissen Tübingen University Press Verboven verso wine Yahweh groups αἱρέσεις ἐν ὑμῖν καὶ ξένος οἱ συναγωγή