CHRIST AND THE SPIRIT IN GALATIANS AND 2 CORINTHIANS 1-5: AN ESCHATOLOGICAL COMPARISON
In this dissertation I compare the role of Christ in a believer's life with the role of the Spirit in a believer's life. I have limited the scope of this comparison in two ways. First, I make primarily an eschatological comparison. I pay special attention to nuances of fulfillment or anticipation, and to qualitative distinctions between past, present, and future. Secondly, I limit this examination to Galatians and 2 Corinthians 1-5, because they have differing eschatological perspectives. Galatians has a throughly realized eschatology, and 2 Corinthians 1-5 is much more futuristic. By examining Christ and the Spirit in such differing passages, I hoped to represent a broad scope of Paul's thought without studying all his letters. (I use only 2 Corinthians 1-5 because 2 Corinthians 6-13 contains little affecting my dissertation, but several critical problems hindering this study.) In the first half of the dissertation I examine the historical context of these letters, the intention and theology Paul reflects in each, as well as the particular christology and pneumatology of these two texts. Upon this background, in the second half I look closely at the relevant passages, to determine the nature of the cooperation of Christ and the Spirit, and the relationship of their respective roles. This investigation shows that Paul will use the person and work of Christ in the believer's past, present, and future. Depending on the needs of his audience, any one of these, or a combination of them, can be christologies that are useful for Paul. The Spirit alone bridges the gap of time and distance between Christ and the believer. Wherever Christ touches believers, the Spirit is there. Paul can vary his christology because of the Spirit, for the Spirit brings all "eras" of christology into the believer's sphere. Paul limits the Spirit's activity to the present, but the christology which the Spirit brings to the present has no eschatological limitations that we can determine. Such is our conclusion from Galatians and 2 Corinthians 1-5. I suggest that this represents the Pauline corpus, but that would require more study to confirm.
EDMUND KURT NEUFELD,
"CHRIST AND THE SPIRIT IN GALATIANS AND 2 CORINTHIANS 1-5: AN ESCHATOLOGICAL COMPARISON"
(January 1, 1986).
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