A. R. Brown 2008: Paul’s Apocalyptic Word in 1 Corinthians 1-2


Virtue in the Pauline letters: theological and ethics motifs in Pauline literature

Alexandra R. Brown’s The Cross and Human Transformation: Paul’s Apocalyptic Word in 1 Corinthians was republished by Fortress Press in 2008 (first published in 1995 by Fortress Press). Brown begins her argument by suggesting that some theologians ‘have tended to eclipse certain rhetorical aspects of Paul’s discourse on the cross, especially the function of the cross in promoting the cognitive transformation that Paul strives for in his letter’ (Brown, xxi). To address this problem, Brown takes an approach similar to that of earlier authors, such as Käsemann, Beker, and Martyn. While these authors may emphasize different aspects of Pauline apocalyptic theology, the similarity in their apocalyptic focus on the ‘end of the old’ allows Brown to take their suggestions further in order to discuss with further clarity the newness which Christ’s death secures. This kind of apocalyptic approach generally suggests that the event of Christ’s death turns the ages, and with Brown’s emphasis it becomes clearer that this…

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