Posts from July 2012

Thumbnails for remembering the Apostolic Fathers: Apostolic Fathers #8

By Kenneth Berding Jul. 30, 2012 11:23 a.m. Church Life, New Testament, Historical Theology

This is my last post (at least in this series) on the Apostolic Fathers.  But together with my class, we have come up with a list of thumbnail descriptions to help us remember the various writings of the Apostolic Fathers.  Here is our list (in the order we read these writings):

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Signs Of Life

By Mick Boersma Jul. 25, 2012 10:46 a.m. Church Life, Marriage and Family, Ministry and Leadership

     It started as I was picking up toys from a visit by our precious grandchildren.  Strewn about the living room, into the kitchen and out the back door was a dizzying array of colorful plastic pieces of everything from ‘Cootie’ to ‘Madeline’s Christmas Book and Doll Set’.  This scene had played out before – every time those five bundles of energy had ‘left the building’. 

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How Christianity is Distinct in "To Diognetus": Apostolic Fathers #7

By Kenneth Berding Jul. 23, 2012 11:48 a.m. Apologetics, Evangelism, New Testament, Historical Theology

Here’s a chapter written by an unknown early Christian to an unbeliever named Diognetus that is well-worth the three minutes it will take you to read it.  This evangelist and apologist refers to Christians as “a new race or way of life” (Diogn. ch. 1).  In chapter 5 he unpacks the distinctiveness of Christians.

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Building a Better Small Group

By Joanne Jung Jul. 18, 2012 12:03 p.m. Church Life, Ministry and Leadership, Spiritual Formation, Historical Theology

My article, "Building a Better Small Group," was just posted by The Gospel Coalition. 

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The So-Called Epistle of Barnabas and the Problem of Allegorical Interpretation: Apostolic Fathers #6

By Kenneth Berding Jul. 16, 2012 10:48 a.m. Biblical Exposition, New Testament, Theology, Historical Theology

We had quite a lively conversation in my Apostolic Fathers class the other evening after reading The Epistle of Barnabas.  (BTW, it was not written by the biblical Barnabas; and the attribution to Barnabas may not even be original, so you don’t need to assume that this author is “pretending” to be Barnabas).  “Barnabas” was committed to the interpretive procedure known as allegorical interpretation. 

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Digging Dan

By Kenneth Way Jul. 12, 2012 10:05 p.m. Biblical Exposition, Old Testament

I recently returned from an excavation at Tel Dan in Israel.  The season was for four weeks (June 25-July 20, 2012), but I only stayed for the first two.  I was accompanied by Ivan Haq, an MA-OT student at Talbot/Biola.  Neither of us is a professional “field” archaeologist, but we paid for our room & board and flights and we offered our labor as volunteers.

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Taking Issue with the Angelic Visitations in The Shepherd of Hermas: Apostolic Fathers #5

By Kenneth Berding Jul. 9, 2012 1:12 p.m. Theology, Historical Theology

I’m still teaching my summer class on the Apostolic Fathers.  We just had a discussion in class about the Shepherd of Hermas.  Hermas claims to have had lots of visions and appearances of angels (one in the form of a shepherd—thus the name of the work) who tell him what to do and what messages he should deliver to others.

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