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Durham e-Theses
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The doctrine of immortality among the pre-pauline Christians

Jordahl, V. Truman (1967) The doctrine of immortality among the pre-pauline Christians. Doctoral thesis, Durham University.



This investigation treats of the origin of the Doctrine of Immortality. Was it implicit in the teachings of the earliest Jewish Christians or a later addition to Christian thought? Part One, examines this teaching in relation to the thought, practices and institutions of the pre-Christian hellenised Jews in the light of the Zenon Papyri, Maccabees, Dead Sea Scrolls, Enoch, Pseudepigrapha, Josephus and other relevant sources. With the following results: (a) Highly advanced teachings on the Resurrection of the Body and Immortality of the Soul were conjoined by pre-Christian hellenised Jews. (b) The important separation of these doctrines first occurs in the controversies between the Pharisees and the Sadducees: the pre-Herodian Sadducees rejected the Pharisaic General Resurrection and Judgment, but affirmed a doctrine of Immortality and Translation of the Elect. Part Two, examines the Immortality-Resurrection Controversy as it emerged within the early Church and influenced the formulation of its two main Kerygmata, represented by the Immortality-Ascension Kerygma of the Urgemeinde; seen in the Urgemeinde traditions contained in the Gospels, particularly John and the Epistle to the Hebrews; and the Resurrection Kerygma of the Pauline Christians described in Acts and the Pauline Letters. A comparison discloses that: (a) The Urgemeinde interpreted pre-Christian Parousia expectations as already fulfilled in the Passion of Christ. Their Son of Man, Translation and Immortality Kerygma are closer to the eschatology of the pre-Herodian Sadducaic-Esaenes. (b) The Pauline Christians in their teachings on the Messianic Prophet and future Resurrection- Judgment , are shown to be closer to the basic Pharisaic eschatology; (c) Luke, unlike the other Evangelists, has sought to reconcile these differing Kerygmata which were both very much alive in his own day.(d) This Kerygmata Controversy was decisive in Paul's differences with the Urgemeinde. (e) The Fourth Gospel, although written later, discloses a unique continuity with the Urgemeinde Kerygma.

Item Type:Thesis (Doctoral)
Award:Doctor of Philosophy
Thesis Date:1967
Copyright:Copyright of this thesis is held by the author
Deposited On:18 Sep 2013 10:26

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