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Title: My Beloved Brothers and Sisters: Christian Siblingship in Paul
Author: Aasgaard, Reider
Publisher: T & T Clark; Publication Date: 2004
Paperback; ISBN: 9780567084811
Volumes: 1; Pages: 400
List Price in Paper: $101.00 Our price: $101.00
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In his letters, the apostle Paul more than a hundred times characterises the Christians as 'adelfoi', as 'brothers and sisters' (siblings). This is by far his most common way of speaking about fellow believers. In spite of this, there has been little research on this topic.
This book provides new research on family and sibling relations in the Greco-Roman and Jewish context and discusses the relevant texts on siblingship in the seven authentic Pauline letters. A main thesis is that the sibling terminology is both central and charged with meaning for Paul. When he speaks of the Christians as siblings, he employs contemporary notions of what sibling and family relations should be about: displaying emotional closeness, show love, be tolerant and forgiving, defend family honour, and strive for familial harmony. In various contexts Paul utilises these ideals rhetorically in order to influence the attitudes and behaviour of the Christians, both internally and in relation to outsiders. Since siblingship and family relations were so important in antiquity, Paul's use of this kind of language was significant and powerful.
The book is an in-depth study of Christian relations according to Paul. Its conclusions have important consequences for our understanding of ethics and ecclesiology not only in Paul, but also in the New Testament in general. The book combines metaphor theory, socio-historical perspectives and exegesis of Pauline texts in ways that produce new insights both into Paul's thinking and into several passages of his letters.
Ch. 1 Introduction
Ch. 2 Family and siblingship in Paul: a history of research
Ch. 3 Family and siblingship as metaphors: a metaphor--theoretical approach
Ch. 4 'A haven in a heartless world': siblings within the framework of the family
Ch. 5 Castor and Pollux, Martha and Mary: the sibling relationship
Ch. 6 Plutarch on brotherly love: a case study of siblingship
Ch. 7 Like a brother and a sister: metaphorical use of sibling language
Ch. 8 Mapping Paul's family language: family and sibling metaphors in Paul
Ch. 9 Siblings of Christ--children of God?: Jesus as 'firstborn among many siblings' (Rom. 8.29)
Ch. 10 Love your brothers and sisters! ([actual symbol not reproducible] in 1 Thess. 4.9-12/Rom. 12.9-13)
Ch. 11 Welcome those who are weak! (1 Cor. 8.1-11.1 and Rom. 14.1-15.13)
Ch. 12 Do not sue your brother! (1 Cor. 6.1-11)
Ch. 13 Brothers in the flesh and in the Lord: family role encounters in Paul (Philemon et al.)
Ch. 14 'My brothers and sisters!': sibling address in Paul
Ch. 15 Father, siblings, and false siblings: Paul's relationship with his co-Christians
Ch. 16 Christian siblingship in Paul