Drawing on recent scholarship on the Pauline tradition within early Christianity, Nicholas Taylor examines Paul's theology of baptism and highlights its practical application in ministry today.
It considers what the rite represented and effected, in the light of the social and cultural milieu in which his letters were written, and of his strategies for mission and the formation and nurture of new Christian communities. The need to integrate recent scholarship with contemporary pastoral issues, and to do so in a theologically reflective way, is acute.
Using a wide range of social scientific approaches to the ancient world and Christian origins, including identity, religious conversion, and ritual, the book explores the implications of this reconstruction for contemporary issues of baptismal practice, pastoral care and mission, aiming to bring the insights of specialists to those working on the frontline of pastoral practice.
"In "Paul on Baptism", Nicholas Taylor applies his expertise as a New Testament scholar to a pressing issue in ecclesial ministry. As a contribution to practical theology, [this book] will benefit readers concerned with the intersection of theology, mission, and ministry in their local contexts. Highly recommended." -- Bruce Longenecker, Baylor University, USA
"This book is a brilliant example of the best scholarship offered at the service of the church. Anyone who wants to think deeply about their own theology of baptism, inspired by the Pauline texts, will find this an invaluable source of lucid and thoughtful insight. I highly recommend it." -- Paula Gooder, Theologian in Residence, Bible Society
"Conscious of the pastoral challenges facing contemporary Churches across the world, and drawing on his own experience in different parts of the globe, Nicholas Taylor brings the latest scholarship to present St. Paul's understanding of baptism and how this can be applied to the current problems of Christian Initiation. This is an important study for clergy looking for some biblical and theological guidance for their baptismal practice." -- Bryan D. Spinks, Yale Institute of Sacred Music and Yale Divinity School, USA
"This fine study lies within a distinguished tradition of Anglican scholarship that is today sadly in grave danger of disappearing. Beautifully written it combines meticulous scholarship with pastoral sensitivity. Nicholas Taylor sustains his vocation as both a parish priest and a New Testament scholar with a firm, yet unassuming, grounding in theology and a solid grasp of Christian origins." -- David Jasper, Professor of Theology and Literature (University of Glasgow)
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