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Orthodoxy and Heresy in Earliest…
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Orthodoxy and Heresy in Earliest Christianity

by Walter Bauer

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This was used as a textbook during my first year in the M.Div. program and Brite Divinity School at Texas Christian University. Its thesis is based more on presuppositions than historical reality. See The Heresy of Orthodoxy by Andreas Kostenberger. ( )
  jgaryellison | Feb 18, 2015 |
An important book for students of the New Testament. While Bauer's arguments are often flawed, the refined and developed points made by Bultmann are, perhaps, more significant. Bauer's impact was important, but without the popularizer Bultmann we may never have felt it's wide influence to this day. ( )
  tehone | Jan 25, 2014 |
The starting place for the modern understanding that early Christianity was diverse and local and that regional doctrinal and administrative unification (in Greece, in Egypt, in Syria, in Rome -- including language barriers and divisions which exist to this day) was a gradual process.

Further scholarship (including taking more seriously the parties and divisions within the New Testament, itself) and added evidence have given Bauer's thesis further depth and detail. This book discusses each ancient local form of Christianity and gives particularity and definition to what is too often smeared into a uniform blur. If we are to take seriously that different gospels writers wrote for different audiences in different locations (and the memory that the apostles each missionized in a separate place) then we must respect the evidence that before wider unifications Christians differed in what they believed, what they read, and how they worshiped.

A helpful reminder that one must always ask "where is this evidence from?" (in addition to "when was it from") while doing history.

(Walter Bauer wrote the New Testament Greek dictionary still used to this day.)

-Kushana ( )
  Kushana | Dec 28, 2010 |
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