After Paul Left Corinth: The Influence of Secular Ethics and Social Change

Bruce W. Winter

After Paul Left Corinth: The Influence of Secular Ethics and Social Change
After Paul Left Corinth: The Influence of Secular Ethics and Social Change

Book Details

Categories: Pauline Studies

Book Information

After Paul Left Corinth gathers for the first time all the relevant extant material from literary, nonliterary, and archaeological sources on what life was like in the first-century Roman colony of Corinth. Using this evidence, Bruce Winter not only opens a fascinating vista on day-to-day living in the Graeco-Roman world but, more importantly, helps us understand what happened to the Christian community after Paul left Corinth. As Winter shows, the origin of many of the problems Paul dealt with in 1 Corinthians can be traced to culturally determined responses to aspects of life in Corinth.

The significance of the role that culture played in the life of the Corinthian Christians has either been ignored or underestimated in explaining the reasons for their difficulties after Paul left. Winter first examines the extent to which Paul communicated alternative ways of behaving while he was in Corinth. Winter then explores the social changes that occurred in Corinth after Paul left. Severe grain shortages, the relocation of the Isthmian Games, the introduction of a new federal imperial cult, the withdrawal of kosher meat from the official market—all of these cultural events had a substantial impact on the life of the emerging Christian community.

Accentuated with photos of relevant archaeological artifacts, this volume provides a significant new perspective from which to read Paul’s Corinthian correspondence.

Pages: 364
Publisher: Eerdmans
Published: 2001
ISBN-10: 0802848982
ISBN-13: 9780802848987

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4.93333333333333 out of 5 based on 3 user ratings
BRathbun March 23, 2020 5 5
Essential reading for any serious study on Corinthians. Winter sets the bar high for interdisciplinary studies. Vastly expand your knowledge of 1st century Corinth.
Phillip J. Long July 29, 2017 4.8 5
This is not exactly a commentary, but it is one of the most helpful books I have ever read on the social and political situation of Corinth in the middle of the first century. Winter is a historian who asks the simple question, what happened in the church at Corinth after Paul’s 18 months there? His answer is that the members of the church were swayed by the social and ethical world of Roman Corinth, as well as enormous political pressures on members of the congregation to participate in civic duties. There is a wealth of background material in this book which everyone trying to deal with the problems of the Corinthian church must take into account. [Full Review]
After Paul Left Corinth: The Influence of Secular Ethicsand Social ChangeGrand Rapids: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company,2001. Pp. xvi + 344, Cloth, $28.00, ISBN 0802848982.Donald EngelsFayetteville, AK 72703 This excellent book studies the conflicts that arose in Corinth’s fledgling Christianchurch after Paul completed his mission there in A.D. 51. Although Paul had spent eighteenmonths in the city, after he left numerous disputes arose regarding his teachings. Wintercarefully analyzes each of the disputes against the cultural, intellectual, and socialbackground of the ancient city. The book is based on a comprehensive knowledge of theoriginal sources concerning the ancient Roman city and its Christian church:archaeological, epigraphical, and literary. These sources are analyzed using techniquesfrom the social sciences and impressive linguistic exegesis of critical New Testamentpassages. He has mastered not only the scholarship concerning Corinth’s Christiancommunity but also the social, political, religious, and intellectual background of the first-century Roman world in general. The result is a superb tour de force, a major contributionto New Testament studies. Indeed, one of the great merits of the book is the way it bringsthe ancient Christian community to life in a way that few others have been able to achieve.Chapter 1 introduces us to Roman Corinth and its early Christian church. Part 1follows and is divided into nine chapters. This part discusses the problems of the Corinthiancongregation as seen from the context of contemporary secular ethics. [Full Review]

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