Monday, February 20, 2006

Gospel in Paul

At the start of this year I suggested that I had some tentative plans to attempt an audio related medium on my blog. I left the idea on the shelf until Ben Myers of Faith and Theology had a stab at it, in which he produced a podcast on the question: ‘what is the gospel?’. And I loved it!

So I thought I’d give it a try, and I’ve produced a 15 minute reflection on a similar topic to Ben: ‘what is the gospel in the apostle Paul?’. So, rather than drawing on the works of modern theologians I’ve restricted my focus to Pauline scholarship, and have tried to say something helpful. However, having just finished the recording, I’m convinced that if I do it again, I’ll prepare my thoughts a little better!

I dunno if I’ll do this again as the whole experience was a bit weird, so tell me what you think.

Here is the mp3 (just over 5 MB).


At 2/20/2006 1:48 AM, Anonymous Steven Harris said...

I enjoyed the Podcast I have to say, I enjoyed the way you brought out a much wider and fuller (and more biblical) understanding of the Gospel and of salvation.

You should stick at the podcasting :)

At 2/20/2006 2:32 AM, Blogger C. Stirling Bartholomew said...

RE: Gospel in Paul - Chris Tiling

Long version:

"The gospel in Paul, I could say, is Christ's gracious risen lordship extending into all the world through the proclamation of the person of Christ through the powerful outworking of the Spirit bringing the gospel as an event."

This definition is self-referencing (recursive). The head term GOSPEL appears in the body of the definition. If the term "gospel" in "The gospel in Paul" is coreferential with the term "gospel" in " the gospel as an event" then we have a recursive definition. It these terms are not coreferential then to understand what you intend to say we need to know what the referent is for each instance of "gospel".

Beyond this, I think a strong case can be made that Paul's own understanding of his gospel was propositional in nature, something that could be written down, not an event (contra Barth, Brunner ...) but I don't want to get into a brawl with a bunch of Barth Ph.Ds. Been there, done that. I am too old for this sort of thing. If you tossed a stone into an ETS plenary session nine times out of ten it would strike a Barthian scholar. :-))

I listened to your pod cast three times. I totally agree with your criticisms of the pre-Saussarian approaches.

thanks for the pod cast, thoroughly enjoyed it.


At 2/20/2006 3:35 AM, Blogger T.B. Vick said...

I really enjoyed this a bunch, Chris. Granted, I had the same notion of "gospel" that you described at the beginning of your presentation (a series of propositions that were believed in order to get my bottom out of hell and into heaven).

I am still working through Paul's gospel (in is latters) and doing certain research to that end, so what you had to say here was very thought provoking and helpful in various ways.

I do hope you decide to do this again - same topic, maybe more directly and with more detail.

At 2/20/2006 4:54 AM, Blogger eddie said...

very important topic, nice podcast.

Quick question. How do you post files?

At 2/20/2006 12:15 PM, Anonymous Guy Davies said...

I appreciated your emphasis on the "bigness" of Paul's gospel. Too often evangelicals have thought of the gospel simply as the means by which we go to heaven when we die. The renovation of creation by the risen Christ has often been downplayed and ignored.

I'm not sure sure about your Wrightian definition of the righteousness of God.

I was delivered from the the more individualistic understanding of Paul's gospel by reading these words:

"Most people in the Christian Church today do not seem to believe truly in the resurrection of the body. All they believe is that we shall continue to live in some other realm. This is not the biblical teaching, which is, that we shall live in the body on this renewed, renovated, regenerated earth...We are not to look forward merely to a vague, indefinite, nebulous spiritual state. No, we shall be in a body, and we shall be on a new earth, under a new heavens wherein dwelleth righteousness."

Whose words are these? Answers on a postcard.

At 2/21/2006 1:18 PM, Blogger Ben Myers said...

I finally got to listen to this, Chris -- and I loved it. I found it interesting and very helpful, and my wife even enjoyed listening to it as well (mainly because she liked your English accent).

I really hope you'll do more of these!

At 2/21/2006 3:14 PM, Anonymous Sean Winter said...

Hi Chris

Thanks for making a brave attempt. I thought there was a lot of interesting stuff. Just a couple of comments:

- your definition left me wondering where you would locate Christiaan Beker's work, emphasising as it does that first and foremost Paul is interested in the apocalyptic triumph of God - i.e. a theological focus to Paul's gospel under which christology in the end has to be subsumed

- if you do this again I would recommend leaving out the forschungsgeschichte and spend more time on the primary texts

Anyway, thanks again


At 2/22/2006 4:39 AM, Blogger Paul said...


I don't care what anyone else says, I liked your Barthian, Wrightian, forschungsgeschichtian, English accented podcast. My brutish American tongue couldn't have said it better.

At 2/22/2006 1:48 PM, Blogger Chris Tilling said...

Hey, thanks Paul!!

At 2/23/2006 2:58 AM, Blogger Rory Shiner said...

Thanks Chris. I really enjoyed listening to this and trust it will be the first of many.

At 2/23/2006 2:04 PM, Blogger Chris Tilling said...

Many thanks Rory.

I see that you live in Perth. My sister will be moving there this year with her to-be husband.


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