Jan 12, 2010

Thielman on Luke and the Law

According to Frank Thielman, Luke writes as a Hellenistic theologian and social apologist. Both roles shape his understanding and presentation of the Mosaic Law. Furthermore, "If we read Luke’s material on the Mosaic law in the light of these two aspects of his narrative, we discover that a coherent approach to the law emerges. It can be summarized in three propositions:

1. The Mosaic Law was normative for God’s people until the ministry of Jesus.
2. Despite some continuity between Jesus’ ethical teaching and the Mosaic law, Jesus replaced the law with his own, more radical ethic.
3. The reluctance of the early Christians to understand this and their pragmatic approach to its implementation in their communities reveals their respect for traditional social customs."

Frank Thielman, The Law and the New Testament: The Question of Continuity (New York: Crossroad, 1999), 140.

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