Faculty & Staff wish all our readers a Blessed Lunar New Year!
book comes from a former Anglican bishop of North Sydney, Australia and a
teaching fellow at Regent College in Vancouver. He has distinguished
himself over a long career as an outstanding historian and a biblical
scholar particularly interested in the historicity of the New Testament
documents. This book is the first of a planned trilogy entitled After
Jesus. The forthcoming volumes are projected as “Paul and His Mission Churches” and “Finding the Historical Christ.”
When one notices that this book is about the birth or origin of
Christianity, an immediate reaction could be that we already have such a “book”
in the Acts of the Apostles. True, that is indeed what Acts purports to
be, but we have problems to overcome. We need to be alerted that the book
of Acts is a highly selective narrative, with surprising omissions and an
absence of chronological markers for Paul’s
present volume is set out to provide an alternative view to J. D. Crossan’s
The Birth of Christianity (HarperSanFrancisco, 1998) by examining
the enigmatic twenty years following the crucifixion. While both books
offer historical reconstructions of the same period, namely, the
beginnings of Christianity in the 30s and 40s, Barnett notes that as his
methods are different from Crossan’s
so will be his conclusions.
an introduction Barnett gives critiques of radical scholars who reject
Jesus as the miracle-working messianic figure presented in the Gospels.
Barnett attempts to demonstrate that such a portrait of Jesus in the
Gospels is historically reliable. In contrast to Crossan, who heavily
relies on the hypothetical document “Q”
and the extra-canonical Gospel of Thomas, Barnett’s
reconstructions are mainly based on Paul’s
authentic letters as the earliest extant witnesses to Jesus and the first
part of Acts. Contrary to Crossan and others, Barnett is convinced that
the first two decades of Christian history are hardly “lost
years,” but are open to historical
a couple of chapters devoted to the discussion of the ancient sources, the
problems of dealing with ancient histories and his calculation of the
chronological framework, Barnett surveys the flow of Christian history for
the years 33-47. This history is integrated with the Roman imperial
developments and the history of the eastern empire for the same period. He
shows his expertise as a “secular”
historian and a biblical scholar.
main thesis is that “the birth of
Christianity and the birth of christology are inseparable, both as to time
and essence” (p.8). In other
words, Barnett finds a “high
christology” in the years
immediately following the crucifixion and detects little christological
development throughout Paul’s
letters. A common scholarly assumption is that a “high”
christology, i.e., understanding Jesus as Messiah, Son of God and Lord,
gradually developed after Jesus’
death and resurrection. Barnett in this book challenges this common view
and focuses on the earliest theological understanding of Jesus and the
spread of that understanding through missionary activity, especially in
the land of Israel. He repeatedly emphasizes the implications of a “high” christology alongside the
brevity of the time span in which that christology was formed. Barnett is
convinced that any attempts to explain the rise of Christianity by
sociological or psychological grounds are doomed to failure. For him,
Christ or christological conviction was “the
engine that drove early Christianity.”
In a way Barnett’s thesis is corroborated by my doctoral work, in which I’ve argued that the root of preexistent Son Christology is found in early Christian exegesis of the two messianic psalms (Pss. 110:1 and 2:7) in the light of Jesus self-consciousness of divine sonship and divine mission. The tremendous impact left by the resurrection event and the resulting conception of Jesus "literally" enthroned to God's right hand led them to see Jesus as the preexistent Lord and Son of God.
on the chronological work of R. Riesner and others, Barnett concludes that
Damascus road conversion took place in 34, one year after Jesus’
crucifixion. As an analysis of Paul’s
letters (e.g., 1 Cor 15:1-7; Rom 1:14) shows that he received this
christological conviction from others, this christology must have been
developed in the year between Jesus’
death and Paul’s conversion. This
early date in turn implies that the christology essentially goes back to
in a very accessible style, Barnett provides an informative, reliable
chronology of the years immediately following Jesus’
crucifixion. Although some speculative arguments are advanced at some
points here and there, the general thrust of his arguments can be well
taken and provides a good guide to those who seek a biblically based
history of the beginning of Christianity during the first twenty years.
̃ Old Testament Foundations I (OT101, 3 credits), starting Feb 2 (new date). Lecturer: Dr Philip Satterthwaite
New Testament Foundations I (NT101, 3 credits),
starting Feb 3. Lecturer: Dr Aquila Lee.
*New Testament Greek I (BG111, video class, 3
credits), starting Feb 4 at Bishan campus. Lecturer: Dr Quek Swee Hwa.
New Testament Greek: Basic Research Tools & Methods (BG214,
video class, 1.5 credits), starting Feb 4 at Bishan campus. Lecturer: Dr
Quek Swee Hwa.
*Greek Exegesis I (BG211, video class, 3 credits),
starting Feb 4 at Bishan campus. Lecturer: Dr Quek Swee Hwa.
*Biblical Hebrew I (BH111, 3 credits), starting Feb 7.
Lecturer: Dr Augustine Pagolu.
*Biblical Hebrew: Basic Research Tools & Methods (BH214,
1.5 credits), starting Feb 7. Lecturer: Dr Augustine Pagolu.
Wisdom & Ecclesiastes (OT353, 1.5 credits),
starting Feb 8 at Thomson Rd Baptist Church. Lecturer: Dr Philip
*Counsellor’s Skills: Developing Micro-Skills in
Counselling (CO213, 3 credits), starting Feb 8 (new date).
Lecturer: Mr Song Cheng Hock.
Contextual Hermeneutics: Reading the Bible in the Asian
Context (HE210, 1.5 credits), starting Feb 10. Lecturer: Dr Augustine
*Better Speech for Leadership & Ministry (AT231,
1.5 credits), starting Feb 22 (new date). Lecturer: Rev Ng Seng
Spirituality for Christian Formation (CE263, 1.5
credits), starting Mar 7. Lecturer: Mr John Chong Ser Choon.
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Courses marked with an asterisk (*) are not offered on audit basis. Visit our website for course description. For registration, call 62276815 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
continue our presentation of our recent graduates. Praise God with us for
Chris Chin and for others to be presented next week.
Summary: A Desert Flower – The Story of Rahab of Jericho (A Novel)
history-in-fiction, A Desert Flower offers a verisimilitude
faithful to biblical history, archaeology, geography and culture amidst a
re-imagining of what could have been. Part I: Death. Rahab seeks
work in Jericho to help support her family. However, it is a troubled
time, and she struggles to make ends meet. Meanwhile, two young spies slip
across the Jordan to survey Jericho, and crash into her life when they
stop by her inn overlooking the town walls. This collision escalates when
the Israelites attack and destroy Jericho, and Rahab and her family are
taken to live among the Israelites. Part II: Birth. Love blossoms
between Rahab and Salmah, one of the two spies. But there is much conflict
as the tribal elders protest against the union between the son of the
chieftain of Judah and a foreign woman who has been a harlot. The
community of Israel and the couple trudge through a morass of theological
and moral problems, moving towards a conclusion whose implications will
ripple through generations to come.
Prize - in memory of the late Mr Charles Phan Chauw Fatt
Prize - in memory of the late Mr Charles Phan Chauw Fatt
Testament Prize - in memory of the late Elder Lee Tsu Hwai
Bereavement. Our deepest
condolences to our alumnus Rev & Mrs Alby Yip Kong Fai on the
homegoing of Alby’s father, the late Mr Yip Nagan, on 17 Jan 2006.
Jonathan Cortes 30/1
Lawrence Low 30/1
Robert Tan 30/1
Chan Chung Hoi 1/2
Seah Chiew Kwan 1/2
Chan Ee Yuee 2/2
Teo Yea Ling 2/2
Tan Kim Tian 3/2
Siew Kim Siang 3/2
Tan Keng Lak 3/2
Wilson Tan 3/2
Anna Toh 4/2
William Teo 4/2
Susan Lim 4/2
Wong Lea Choung 4/2
Mr Siow Yew Mun 4/2