Monday, 30 April 2012

Eleutheria 2, 1 (2012)

The third issue of Eleutheria (an open access, peer-reviewed journal led, edited, and reviewed by graduate students of Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary) is online, containing the following mix of main articles:
Letter from the Editors
Wesley L. Handy
Correlating the Nevius Method with Church Planting Movements: Early Korean Revivals as a Case Study
John Nevius served as a missionary to China in the late nineteenth-century. From his field experience, Nevius argued for radical changes in missionary methodology. His greatest influence may have been on the mission to Korea beginning in the 1890s. David Garrison, currently serving in South Asia, served for several years in influential administrative roles within the International (formerly Foreign) Mission Board of the Southern Baptist Convention. He studied and advocated Church Planting Movements [CPM], necessitating a change in contemporary missionary methodology. Both men have made major contributions to the practice of missions. This article endeavors to show the similarities between their methods, viz., the Nevius Method and CPMs, through the historical lens of the introduction of Protestant Christianity to Korea. The impetus behind this analysis is the role and value of missions history in developing missionary strategy. Both the Nevius Method and Church Planting Movements implement certain similar strategies that have proved effective and are worthy of consideration.
Thomas W. Hudgins
An Application of Discourse Analysis Methodology in the Exegesis of John 17
This study applies discourse analysis methodology to the study of the seventeenth chapter of John. Instead of adopting the typical three-fold division of Jesus' prayer based upon the three referents (Jesus, the immediate disciples, and future disciples), greater attention is given to Jesus' requests and final commitment, the mainline verbs. By giving more structural significance to the mainline verbs, the structural division and natural outline of Jesus' prayer become more evident.
Brian T. Scalise
Perichoresis In Gregory Nazianzen and Maximus the Confessor
The doctrine of perichoresis applied to Trinity is the mutual coinherence or interpenetration of the Persons of the Godhead. Applied to Christology, perichoreo is, first, the reciprocal passing of characteristics and titles between the divine and human natures hypostatically united in Yeshua. Secondly, it also describes the distinct but intimate union between Christ's natures. Historically, the Trinitarian use of perichoresis grew out of the christological use of perichoreo first developed by Gregory Nazianzen (A.D. 4th century) and then, subsequently, explained by Maximus the Confessor (A.D 7th century). Maximus, often directly commenting on Gregory's use of perichoreo, seeks to expound upon the union of the divine and human nature in Christ. This essay begins with an investigation into Gregory's use of the term and concept of perichoreo followed by a summarization of the findings . After this, Maximus' use of the concept and term of perichoreo/perichoresis in his Quaestiones Ad Thalassium, Ambigua 1-5, and the 2nd Letter to Thomas will be analyzed and summarized . Lastly, this essay demonstrates how Maximus follows and advances Gregory's use of perichoreo in said works as well as notes the discontinuity between Maximus' use and Gregory's.
Justin K. Morgan
The Burden of Knowing: Camus, Qohelet, and the Limitations of Human Reason
In one of the most influential works of the twentieth century, The Myth of Sisyphus, Albert Camus writes this: ‘This heart within me I can feel, and I judge that it exists. This world I can touch, and I likewise judge that it exists. There ends all my knowledge, and the rest is construction.’ Here, Camus addresses what he believes to be one of the main sources of the absurd: the limitations of human reason. He claims that his inability to fully understand human reality creates a gap between his existence and its meaning, and, in effect, renders the whole of human experience as absurd. Because Camus makes these conclusions from a purely atheistic position, it would seem that his notion of the absurd is incompatible with a theistic understanding of the human condition. Interestingly, however, the main speaker of the ancient Hebrew wisdom book Ecclesiastes, Qohelet, also concludes that the limits of human knowledge give life a sense of absurdity. Although Camus (an atheist) and Qohelet (a theist) begin with different assumptions regarding the existence of God – the very Being who gives meaning and clarity to his creation – their similar conclusions reveal an unlikely compatibility between atheistic and theistic attitudes towards the human predicament. While Camus and Qohelet recognize that the world cannot be explained by human reasoning, and is therefore absurd, they each conclude that uncertainty and human limitations may prompt a certain liberation and solace that allows them to move beyond the absurd. This curious parallel between Camus’s modern existential attitudes in The Myth of Sisyphus and the ancient Hebraic wisdom of Ecclesiastes show that the awareness of the limitation of human reason may compel man to live authentically and passionately despite the seeming unreasonableness of his life.
Book Reviews

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