Biblical Studies, West and East: Trends, Challenges and Prospects date:19-20 September 2013
The collection of writings conveniently referred to as “the Apostolic Fathers” has recently attracted increasing scholarly attention. This corpus embraces diverse textual compositions arising from distinct origins, representing varied literary genres, and serving specific socio-communal purposes. Biblical scholarship especially values the writings of the Apostolic Fathers for the light they cast upon the reception process of the Hebrew Scriptures and the early Christian materials that later formed the New Testament. However, their importance is far greater than this. Precious witnesses to the formative period of the early Jesus movement, they provide valuable information concerning their authors’ views on a variety of topics, including theology, liturgy, ethics. Study of the Apostolic Fathers opens wider perspectives on early Jewish-Christian relations, as well as on the origins of Christian apologetics, homiletics, apocalyptic literature, martyrology, etc. This presentation seeks to explore the relevance of these writings for the study of the New Testament and its environment.