Kosmos and Ioudaioi in the Fourth Gospel: Parallelism, function and context

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Kosmos and Ioudaioi in the Fourth Gospel: Parallelism, function and context

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Title: Kosmos and Ioudaioi in the Fourth Gospel: Parallelism, function and context
Author: Kierspel, Lars
Advisor: Seifrid, Mark A.
Abstract: This dissertation examines the parallelism, function and context of the terms [Special characters omitted.]<math> <f> <g>k</g><a><ac>o</ac><ac>&d12;</ac></a><g>s</g><g>m</g>o<g>v</g> </f> </math> and [Special characters omitted.]<math> <f> '<g>I</g>o<g>u</g><g>d</g><g>a</g><a><ac><g>i</g></ac><ac>&d4;</ac></a> o<g>i</g></f> </math> in the Gospel of John. Chapter 1 introduces the discussion about the post-Holocaust theology and its significance for biblical studies in general and for the New Testament and the meaning of "the Jews" in the Gospel of John in particular.

Chapter 2 presents five different views about the meaning of "the Jews" in the Gospel of John, ranging from very narrow references (religious authority; Judeans), to an ethnic-religious meaning, "fellow Christians" and a religious term without any empirical reference. After discussing more than ten dissertations and their approaches to the topic, our reflections for the methods chosen in this study point out the past and current failure to employ synchronic approaches which pay attention to macrostructural developments in the text. Too often priority is given to referential aspects of the term [Special characters omitted.]<math> <f> '<g>I</g>o<g>u</g><g>d</g><g>a</g><a><ac><g>i</g></ac><ac>&d4;</ac></a> o<g>i</g></f> </math> before its literary place and function has been sufficiently determined.

Chapter 3 studies the occurrences of [Special characters omitted.]<math> <f> '<g>I</g>o<g>u</g><g>d</g><g>a</g><a><ac><g>i</g></ac><ac>&d4;</ac></a> o<g>i</g></f> </math> in the Gospel and finds that the term is used not only with negative connotations but with positive and neutral meanings as well.

Chapter 4 describes the compositional, narratological, and conceptual parallelism between [Special characters omitted.]<math> <f> '<g>I</g>o<g>u</g><g>d</g><g>a</g><a><ac><g>i</g></ac><ac>&d4;</ac></a> o<g>i</g></f> </math> and [Special characters omitted.]<math> <f> <g>k</g><a><ac>o</ac><ac>&d12;</ac></a><g>s</g><g>m</g>o<g>v</g> </f> </math> . We demonstrate that the author delegated the use of [Special characters omitted.]<math> <f> <g>k</g><a><ac>o</ac><ac>&d12;</ac></a><g>s</g><g>m</g>o<g>v</g> </f> </math> mostly to the prologue, the farewell discourse and Jesus' speeches while it is the narrator who employs most occurrences of [Special characters omitted.]<math> <f> '<g>I</g>o<g>u</g><g>d</g><g>a</g><a><ac><g>i</g></ac><ac>&d4;</ac></a> o<g>i</g></f> </math> .

Based on the discovery that both terms are delegated to particular speaker roles and genres, chapter 5 seeks to determine the function of "the world" in relation to "the Jews." We observe that the author uses [Special characters omitted.]<math> <f> <g>k</g><a><ac>o</ac><ac>&d12;</ac></a><g>s</g><g>m</g>o<g>v</g> </f> </math> as a Leitwort which, together with a gnomic style and a lack of concreteness, helps to translate the particulars of Jesus' life (mission and opposition) into universals that apply to a cosmopolitan audience without regard to ethnic origin.

Chapter 6 defines the predominant meaning of [Special characters omitted.]<math> <f> <g>k</g><a><ac>o</ac><ac>&d12;</ac></a><g>s</g><g>m</g>o<g>v</g> </f> </math> in the Gospel as "humanity," refutes the attempt to reduce the meaning of "the world" to a mere principle of unbelief or to Judaism, and places the Gospel into a socio-political context of conflict with the Roman imperial order at the end of the first century. We conclude that the Gospel does not focus its polemic on the Jews as a race but situates the opposition of the historical Jesus in a post-Easter context of universal hate and persecution.

Chapter 7 finishes with a summary and a conclusion which point out that the Gospel's universalism resists a racist reading because the dualism conveyed is not one of race but one of religion. Two appendices and a bibliography finish the dissertation.

Description: This item is only available to students and faculty of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. If you are not associated with SBTS, this dissertation may be purchased from http://disexpress.umi.com/dxweb or downloaded through ProQuest's Dissertation and Theses database if your institution subscribes to that service.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10392/410
Date: 2005-10-25

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