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Reading the Apostolic Fathers: An Introduction ebook

by Clayton N. Jefford


The Apostolic Fathers is a critically important collection of texts for studying the first century of Christian history.

The Apostolic Fathers is a critically important collection of texts for studying the first century of Christian history. Clayton Jefford has a gift. Not once, but twice, he has taken a complicated, diverse, and hotly debated collection of ancient Christian texts and made them intelligible for a modern, uninitiated audience.

Reading the Apostolic Fathers book.

This work is easy to use and affordable yet offers a thorough overview for students and others approaching these writings for the first time. It explains the context and significance of each document and points to further reading.

Reading the Apostolic Fathers: A Student's Introduction. by Clayton N. Jefford

Reading the Apostolic Fathers: A Student's Introduction. Jefford. The Apostolic Fathers is a critically important collections of texts for studying the first century of Christian history. This work is easy to use and affordable yet offers a thorough overview for students and others approaching these writings for the first time

The Apostolic Fathers: An Essential Guide will explain the nature of the collected writings as they stand between . Clayton N. Jefford is Professor of Scripture at Saint Meinrad School of Theolgy and is the Secretary-Treasurer of the North American Patristics Society.

The Apostolic Fathers: An Essential Guide will explain the nature of the collected writings as they stand between the world of the New Testament and later Christian writers, focusing upon what the texts say about ancient Christian thinkers, early church developments, and the evolution of theological ideas prior to the great ecumenical councils. Chapter Outline: Chapter 1: The Collected Writings Chapter.

Home . Details for: Reading the Apostolic Fathers. Country: Соединенные Штаты Америки. Normal view MARC view ISBD view. Reading the Apostolic Fathers : a student's introduction, Clayton N. Dewey: 27. j44rBibliography: Includes bibliographical references and index.

Reading the Apostolic Fathers provides a succinct but comprehensive introduction to Christian literature of the . This book, intended as a quick and simple guide to the Apostolic Fathers, achieves its goals admirably

Reading the Apostolic Fathers provides a succinct but comprehensive introduction to Christian literature of the 'sub-apostolic' age. It provides the basic background information needed to read these texts intelligently and provides bibliographical aids for further study. This book, intended as a quick and simple guide to the Apostolic Fathers, achieves its goals admirably. The consistency of the format, the clarity of the organization and writing, and the inclusion of numerous tables, maps, and a handy glossary ensure that anyone encountering these documents for the first time will find here a reliable and user-friendly introduction to an often strange and mysterious world.

Reading the Apostolic Fathers: An Introduction. Jefford with Kenneth J. Harder and Louis D. Amezaga Jr Peabody, Mass. Kenneth D. Snyder (a1). University of St. Thomas St. Paul, Minn.

Reading the Apostolic Fathers is, as the subtitle notes, a foundation level introduction to reading the early Christian texts known as the Apostolic Fathers. These texts date from the first and second centuries . The book includes treatments of the Letter of Barnabas, Didache, the Letters of Ignatius of Antioch, the Letter of Polycarp to the Philippians, the Martyrdom of Polycarp, I and II Clement, Shepherd of Hermas, and the Letter of Diognetus.

"Reading the Apostolic Fathers provides a succinct but comprehensive introduction to Christian literature of the 'sub-apostolic' age. It provides the basic background information needed to read these texts intelligently and provides bibliographical aids for further study. The work will be of special interest to students beginning their study of the history of early Christianity."--Harold W. Attridge, University of Notre Dame"The layout of the printed page is as visually satisfying as the text is intellectually gratifying. . . . It is this kind of responsible summary and survey of a complex body of scholarship on a collection of ancient texts that will make interdisciplinary scholarship truly possible. . . . They have also produced the best kind of textbook, providing a student with a complete orientation and leaving to her the final task of reading the text."--Karen J. Torjesen, Institute for Antiquity and Christianity of the Claremont Graduate School
Hystana
Jefford provides excellent discussion of source matterials, provenance etc. but does not provide entire translations, only his summaries. And I found at least one egregious error. Accordingly, you must also purchase Penquine Early Christian Writings to back-check Jefford. An example follows:

Jefford, page 91 regarding The Martyrdom of Polycarp, after describing general Roman persecution in his first full paragraph, continues in the second:

"The local Jewish community is described as a second force that opposes God's will. In 12.3 the Jews rise up and call for Polycarps death after he has confessed that he is a Christian. They call him a "destroyer of our Gods"....

Penquin Classics, Early Christian Writings, full translation, page 129, first paragraph line 7, the Governor sends out his crier who three times proclaims:

"Plycarp has admitted to being a Christian! At the crier's words the whole audience, HEATHENS [emphasis added] and Jewish residence of Smyrna alike, broke into loud yells of ungovernable fury: 'That teacher of Asia! That father-figure of the Christians! that destroyer of our gods...etc"

I am not convinced 'Heathens' was an inadvertent ommision. Whatever Jeffords agenda is, I do not know what it is.
Zulurr
Introductions and Commentaries regarding the Apostolic Fathers can be stale, intimidating, or simply boring. This is unfortunate given how important these writers can be for the study of the New Testament and early Christianity. So it is fortunate that Reading the Apostolic Fathers, An Introduction, by Clayton N. Jefford is available.

In a section entitled "For the Reader" Jefford is quite clear on his goal, which is to provide a "quick and simple introduction" to the material. As he notes, there are "other, more extensive surveys" available, but that "these tend to be expense, hard to obtain, or difficult to use except by specialists in early Church history." Most are out of print as well (thankfully this was remedied somewhat by the release of Michael Holme's The Apostolic Fathers). To be clear, Jeffords does not include the complete texts of the writings themselves. This is an introduction only.

After an introduction focusing on just who the Apostolic Fathers were, Jeffords moves chapter by chapter through each one. Starting with the Letter of Barnabas, Jeffords proceeds through The Didache, the Letters of Ignatius, the Letter of Polycarp, the Martyrdom of Polycarp, 1 Clement, 2 Clement, the Shepard of Hermas, and the Letter to Diognetus. Each section discusses the surviving manuscripts, authorship, dating, provence, the "special traits" of the text, and the relationship to the Old and New Testaments. Thereafter Jeffords provides an Outline of the writing, and a summary of its argument. Finally, there is a list of more detailed commentaries.

On the whole, a very helpful Introduction that fills its niche well. It does not pretend to be more.
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An updated general introduction to the Apostolic Fathers is a welcome addition to the field of early Christian studies. In the Introduction Jefford looks at the history of the term "Apostolic Fathers," at the documents which are considered part of the collection, and at the dates of composition. Each subsequent chapter takes a so-called "Apostolic Father" and discusses the manuscript tradition, literary form, authorship, date, setting, purpose, primary elements, special images, and relationship to scripture. Particularly useful are the diagrams, tables and maps which help the reader place the author/document in his/its literary and historical context.
However, there are some problems. In the introduction to his book Jefford says that it is for students doing work at the "college, seminary or graduate level," but there will be "no footnotes or endnotes for the student to ignore or skip." This is particularly problematic for the serious student, for Jefford, throughout the book, speaks of "many scholars" or "many historians" supporting a certain conclusion or position. The reader has no idea who these "scholars" are.
There is also the difficulty of imprecise language which is found throughout the book. Statements are made which do not have supporting evidence. On p. 5 he states that "many of the writings in the apostolic fathers were considered to have the authority of scripture." Actually, only three of the recognized nine Apostolic Fathers (I Clement, Barnabas, and the Shepherd of Hermas) were considered canonical, and these only in certain Christian communities.
On p. 11 in introducing the Letter of Barnabas he says that the author is non-Jewish, but this issue had not been settled among scholars. He argues that the author's use of the "allegorical method" of interpreting Scripture, used by gnostic Christians, is evidence of an Egyptian setting. However, while gnostics were found in Egypt, and while gnostics used the allegorical method of interpretation, gnostics were not found exclusively in Egypt, nor were they the only early Christians to use allegory to interpret Scripture.
Even with these minor flaws, this study represents a useful introduction to the Apostolic Fathers which can be used as a beginning for a further, deeper study of the literature of the early Church.
Roger S. Evans
Reading the Apostolic Fathers: An Introduction ebook
Author:
Clayton N. Jefford
Category:
World
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EPUB size:
1952 kb
FB2 size:
1794 kb
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1483 kb
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Publisher:
Baker Academic; Reprint edition (September 1, 1996)
Pages:
208 pages
Rating:
4.7
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