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The lord of the entire world : Lord Jesus, a challenge to Lord Caesar?

Fantin, Joseph D (2007) The lord of the entire world : Lord Jesus, a challenge to Lord Caesar? PhD thesis, University of Sheffield.

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The purpose of this thesis is to determine whether in some of Paul's uses of the title K-6ptoq for Jesus, there exists a polemic against the living Roman emperor. After preliminary matters concerning methodology, history of research, and limitations are addressed (chapter 1), the sources for the study are described (chapter 2). Issues surrounding Paul's letters are considered. Then the various literary and non-literary sources which are used to better understand Paul's letters are discussed. The thesis proceeds inductively. Chapter 3 describes aspects of the first century context in which the original readers lived. This is intended to provide a grid to understand Paul's proclamation ofJesus as Lord as close to the first century context as possible. First, forms of emperor worship (imperial cults) are described within the context of Roman religious experience. However, this alone does not provide sufficient context to determine whether a polemic exists. Thus, the role of the emperor in the larger context is also considered. Chapter 4 focuses on the title K-6ptoq and the nature of lordship. First, the meaning, usage, and possible referents are described. The relational nature of the term is emphasised. The wide range of potential referents make it difficult to determine whether a polemic exists. The result is the postulation and defence of a superlative concept of supreme lord which has a restricted referent in a given culture. In chapter 5, the usages of the title for the Julio-Claudian and Flavian emperors are catalogued and it is determined that the living Caesar fills the role of the concept supreme lord in the context of Paul's original readers. Using communication principles from relevance theory, it is demonstrated that an author may include certain contextual clues that would suggest a challenge to the default referent by another. Certain modifiers and structures in the Pauline text lead to the conclusion that in some cases Paul intended a polemic against the living emperor. Specifically, this is suggested for Rom 10: 9; 1 Cor 8: 5-6; 12: 3; Eph 4: 5; Phil 2: 11.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Academic Units: The University of Sheffield > Faculty of Arts and Humanities (Sheffield) > Biblical Studies (Sheffield)
Identification Number/EthosID: uk.bl.ethos.440938
Depositing User: EThOS Import Sheffield
Date Deposited: 22 Jul 2013 13:26
Last Modified: 08 Aug 2013 08:52
URI: http://etheses.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/3604

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