Messianism is sometimes construed broadly in relation to a wide variety of savior figures, but within the context of Judaism, messianism has a more natural narrow focus on anointed figures – and within early Christianity, the Davidic king in particular. The study of the Gospel of John, however, has tended to veer away from focusing on such matters, often based on the conviction that the Gospel itself does likewise. The case can be made, however, that the exalted status of Jesus in the Gospel of John, as one who embodies the divine presence and power, is attributed to him precisely as messiah in the strict sense of the word. By way of introduction to the subject of the volume as a whole, this study surveys a range of historical examples of scholarly engagement with the intersection or convergence between the Fourth Gospel and Jewish messianism, and combines insights from older scholarship and very recent proposals to offer suggestions on how to do justice to the Christology of John’s Gospel as itself simply another form of first-century Jewish messianism.
McGrath’s chapter on the so-called Gospel of Jesus’ Wife sets aside as settled the question of the papyrus’ authenticity, and explores instead what we can learn about the Digital Humanities and scholarly interaction in a digital era from the way the discussions and investigations of that work unfolded, and how issues that arose were handled. As news of purported new finds can spread around the globe instantaneously facilitated by current technology and social media, how can academics utilize similar technology to evaluate authenticity, but even more importantly, inform the broader public about the importance of provenance, and the need for skepticism towards finds that appear via the antiquities market?
The movie The Matrix and its sequels draw explicitly on imagery from a number of sources, including in particular Buddhism, Christianity, and the writings of Jean Baudrillard. A perspective is offered on the perennial philosophical question ‘What is real?’, using language and symbols drawn from three seemingly incompatible world views. In doing so, these movies provide us with an insight into the way popular culture makes eclectic use of various streams of thought to fashion a new reality that is not unrelated to, and yet is nonetheless distinct from, its religious and philosophical undercurrents and underpinnings.
The aims of this paper are threefold and may be summarized as follows: (1) to reflect on pluralism as a point of similarity - rather than a difference, as it is often thought to be - between the context in which the New Testament authors wrote and that in which we find ourselves today; (2) to reflect on the approach to christological reflection taken by the New Testament authors in relation to the pluralism of their day, which we will argue was one of interacting with two fronts': fidelity to the traditions which they inherited on the one hand and relevance to their context(s) on the other; and finally (3) to consider what light this may shed on our task today as we seek to reflect on the meaning of the traditions we have inherited in our contemporary context of religious pluralism. 1
Despite the extensive attention that has been given to Philippians 2:6–11 in relation to its Christology, the possibility that v8 alludes to the story about Jesus in Gethsemane has received only cursory mention when it has been considered at all. Philippians 2:8 and the Gospel tradition converge in depicting Jesus choosing to be obedient to God even to the point of death, in the absence of an interpretation of that death as itself salvific. The historical allusion, offered in the midst of a heavily theologized Christological statement, offers an excellent test case for an approach to history which accepts that fact and interpretation are inseparable, and yet still proceeds under the conviction that critical historiography remains possible.