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“Interactive Diversity” Article: New Link

August 9, 2013

A couple of months ago I posted about the publication of one of my essays, “Interactive Diversity:  A Proposed Model of Christian Origins,” in Journal of Theological Studies.  I gave what I thought was the correct link to the online version of the article, but a number of readers reported that it didn’t work.  I’ve made inquiries of Oxford University Press, and they’ve kindly sent me the correct link, so I hope that you’ll be able now to access the published/online version of the article here.

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  1. Jim Deardorff permalink

    Hello Larry,
    Yes, it’s good to have your article online. With your emphasis on the strong role of Paul’s opponents, I wonder if a simple trajectory approach that improves upon Walter Bauer wouldn’t be most plausible for the 1st century. I.e., the “heresies” of the earliest believers came first, and this was strenuously opposed by Paul. Some of the disciples, and probably James of Jerusalem, were among the opponents; hence their “different gospel” must have provided more than just diversity. However, in the 2nd century after Paul’s influence had come to dominate, “interactive diversity” may be a good descriptor.

    • Jim,
      I think I’ve given the reasons that your proposal doesn’t work. The whole point of my “Interactive Diversity” article is that from the outset we have diversity, and with interaction. So, re-introducing “a simple trajectory” rather goes against all that I’ve shown.
      Second, Paul came to join a religious movement that he previously opposed. He didn’t invent one, but joined one. And as I’ve shown repeatedly (e.g., my book, Lord Jesus Christ, pp. 79-153 on “Pauline Christianity”, and pp. 155-216 on “Judean Jewish Christianity”), the differences between Paul and some other Jewish leaders (e.g., the “false brothers” in Jerusalem mentioned in Gal 2) were over the terms on which Gentile converts could be treated as full co-religionists. Paul was never shy about indicating differences, and that’s the extent of what he indicates. (And I’ve addressed this numerous times earlier on the blog site, so we don’t need to go over it again.)

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