Paul and Apostasy: Eschatology, Perseverance, and Falling Away in the Corinthian Congregation

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Mohr Siebeck, 2000 - Religion - 318 pages
B. J. Oropeza presents the concepts of apostasy and perseverance in the light of recent interpretative and intertextual methods. He argues that the Pauline messages include warnings to congregation members who are in danger of falling away. Paul often considers these members to be authentic converts to the early Christian message. A prime example of this is presented in the apostle's use of the Exodus-wilderness traditions in 1 Corinthians 10:1-13. In an effort to persuade the members against apostasy, Paul echoes examples from the Jewish traditions regarding Israel's divine election and punishments. The Corinthians are exhorted not to conduct themselves in a manner that parallels the Israelites who, after crossing the Red Sea, were rejected by God in the wilderness because they committed vices. If the Corinthians commit the same vices in their own spiritual journey, they will suffer divine judgment before the culmination of the eschaton. This language is located within larger rhetorical arguments related to the problems of meat sacrificed to idols, congregational factions and eschatological misperceptions. B. J. Oropeza also deals with theological perspectives associated with the perseverance of the saints, including the Calvinist and Arminian traditions. He thus provides a compelling alternative approach to the theological controversy.
 

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Contents

Introduction Perspectives on Apostasy
1
Rhetorical Approaches to New Testament Interpretation
34
Social and Cultural Anthropological Approaches
40
The Purpose and Scope of This Study
53
113
67
Israels Initiation in the Cloud and Sea
90
The Solidarity of Spiritual Consumption in the Wilderness
104
The Divine Judgements on the Wilderness Generation
117
10
157
The Wilderness Vices in Relation to Pauls Ethics
163
A Warning against Apostasy
192
God Will Not Allow You to Be Tempted beyond
212
Conclusion Paul and Apostasy
223
Selected Works Related to Apostasy and Perseverance
231
Commentaries Bibliography
237
Indices
277

That the Corinthians Would Not Lust After Evil Things
128
7
139
9
149
Authors
309
Subjects
315
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About the author (2000)

B. J. Oropeza, Born 1961; 1990-95 Research Associate, Christian Research Institute, Rancho Santa Margarita, CA; 1989-99 Instructor of Theology, Victory Outreach International, La Puente, CA; 1998-2000 Visiting Assistant Professor of Religion, George Fox University, Newberg, OR.

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