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Entertaining Angels: Early Christian Hospitality in its Mediterranean Setting (Andrew Arterbury) Hardcover Book, (Sheffield Phoenix Press, 2005) 9781905048212
Entertaining Angels: Early Christian Hospitality in its Mediterranean Setting (Andrew Arterbury) Hardcover Book, (Sheffield Phoenix Press, 2005) 9781905048212
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Title: Entertaining Angels: Early Christian Hospitality in its Mediterranean Setting

Author: Arterbury, Andrew

Publisher: Sheffield Phoenix Press; Publication Date: 2005

Hardcover; ISBN: 9781905048212

Volumes: 1; Pages: 250

List Price in Cloth: $90.00 Our price: $71.99

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Hospitality in the ancient Mediterranean world was not a matter of entertaining one's neighbours to dinner. And among the early Christians it was not the same as table-fellowship either, though most modern works confuse that with hospitality. Hospitality was essentially the provision of food and protection for travellers; it could include also a bath, supplies for the traveller's onward journey, and an escort along the road toward to the traveller's next destination.Unlike other writers, Arterbury combs through a broad spectrum of Greek, Roman and Jewish texts-as well as early Christian texts outside the New Testament-for literary depictions of the custom of hospitality. As well, he brings into the picture the Greek novels, which provide us with vivid insights into ancient Mediterranean life. His book presents the most complete analysis of the terms used for hospitality. And he shows how important the practice of hospitality is in understanding the narrative of the conversion of the Gentile Cornelius in Acts 10-11: Luke is here suggesting that Christian communities should employ the traditional custom of hospitality as an effective means of bridging the cultural divide between Jews and Gentiles, evangelizing unbelievers, and forging bonds of friendship with strangers.This revealing and engaging example of what Arterbury describes as 'historical audience-oriented criticism' will be appreciated by scholars and students interested in the reality of life in New Testament times.ContentsChapter 1 INTRODUCTION 1Previous Scholarship on Hospitality 4The Approach of this Study 6Methodology 8An Overview of this Study 11Part I MEDITERRANEAN HOSPITALITY IN ANTIQUITYChapter 2 GRECO-ROMAN HOSPITALITY IN ANTIQUITY 15Describing Hospitality in Ancient Greece 15Hospitality in Homer's Odyssey 28Describing Hospitality in the Hellenistic Age 38Hospitality in the Greek Novels 40Hospitality in Dio Chrysostom's The Hunter 48Summary of Greco-Roman Hospitality 51Chapter 3 JEWISH HOSPITALITY IN ANTIQUITY 55An Overview of Jewish Hospitality 56Abraham's Hospitality among Jewish andEarly Christian Writers 59Additional Examples of Hospitality in the Jewish Scriptures 71Additional Examples of Hospitality Outside of the JewishScriptures 86Summary of Jewish Hospitality 90Chapter 4 EARLY CHRISTIAN HOSPITALITY 94Hospitality and Traveling Missionaries 98References to Hospitality in Paul's Letters 100Examples of Hospitality in Matthew, Mark, and John 109Hospitality in the Johannine Epistles 118Hospitality in Non-Canonical Christian Texts 122A Brief Word about Later Christian Hospitality 128Summary of Christian Hospitality 129Summary of Part I: Mediterranean Hospitality 131Part II THE CUSTOM OF HOSPITALITY IN LUKE AND ACTSChapter 5 THE CUSTOM OF HOSPITALITY IN LUKE'S WRITINGS WITH A FOCUS ON ACTS 10-11 135Examples of Hospitality in Luke and Acts 135Summary of Hospitality in Luke and Acts 152The Custom of Hospitality in Acts 10-11 153Chapter 6 CONCLUSION 182Conclusions about the Custom of Hospitality in Antiquity 182Conclusions about the Custom of Hospitality in Acts 10-11 189Bibliography 192Index of References 208Index of Authors 224
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