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Acts of The Apostles: An Introduction and Study Guide

Taming the Tongues of Fire

Acts of The Apostles: An Introduction and Study Guide

Taming the Tongues of Fire

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Paperback / softback

£14.99

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
ISBN: 9780567671233
Published: 12/01/2017
The book of Acts opens with the dramatic story of tongues of flame descending upon believers at Pentecost and the prophecy of an egalitarian dispensation of the Spirit being fulfilled. Yet, as the narrative unfolds, we become aware of a tension between the socially egalitarian promise of the Pentecost story and the author's underlying concern to provide reassurance for his elite patron Theophilus that Jesus followers do not disturb the existing social order. In this guide, Acts is read as a struggle to tame the tongues of fire. Acts mutes the egalitarian promise of the Spirit through presenting an `orderly account' (as its author calls it) of the Jesus movement that appeals to elite sensibilities. And, at the same time, the narrative contains contradictions, gaps and fissures that suggest the outlines of a more complex, and even subversive, religious movement.

Shelly Matthews (Brite Divinity School, USA)

Shelly Matthews is Associate Professor of New Testament at Brite Divinity School, Texas Christian University, Forth Worth, USA.

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