Paul Outside the Walls: A Study of Luke’s Socio-geographical Universalism in Acts 14:8-20 - Analecta Biblica 143


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    Bechard Dean Philiph
    “Analecta Biblica” 143
    pp. 544

    Paul-hors-les murs. étude de Dean P. Béchard. Il s'agit d'une version révisée de la thèse de l'auteur, qui re-examine la forme et la fonction de Actes 14,8-20 dans le contexte littéraire du premier voyage missionnaire (Actes 13,1-14,28). Une attention particulière est accordée aux références socio-géographiques.

    This study, a revised version of the author's dissertation, re-examines the form and function of Acts 14:8-20 within the literary context of the "first missionary journey" (Acts 13:1 -14:28). A review in Chapter One of prior attempts to clarify Luke's obscure delineation of the journey's itinerary clears the way for a new approach that explores the exegetical significance of the travel notices by situating the journey within Luke's implied image of the inhabited world. Chapter Two identifies the Lystran episode (Acts 14:8-20) as the climax of Paul's first journey, whose activity in three mission fields not only completes the divinely appointed "work" of the mission but also fulfills the terms of Paul's commission as the apostle "to the nations". Special attention is given to those socio-geographical references whose placement at key moments in the story underscores their need for further investigation. Chapter Three confirms Luke's social geography. This pattern not only documents Luke's general interest in ethnographic issues but also places him in the company of other ancient authors with similar interests. In order to situate the jour­ney into Lycaonia within Luke's geographical horizon, the study then explores how Luke's image of the world was informed by two distinct traditions.

    Dean P. Bechard is an assistant professor of Biblical Studies in the Theology Department of Fordham University. He holds an M. Div. and an S.T.L. from Weston Jesuit School of Theology. He completed thè Ph.D. pro­gram in New Testament Studies at Yale University in 1997. His dissertation was directed by W.A.Merk.