Dedicated to the writings of Saint Luke.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Baptism on Account of the Dead

Last December 8, 2005, I discussed briefly the verse in I Cor. 15:29 that is now the partial title and subject matter of a new book by Michael F. Hull. Hull asserts in his book that I Cor. 15 is a chiastic structure with the disputed passage in the position of prominence although he does not use this terminology. Since I had previously posted on the concept of the position of prominence, I was interested in how this argument was presented in his book using chiastic principles. Hull presents this chiastic structure.

A the presentation of Christ's bodily resurrection on the authority of witnesses (15:1-11)
B an explanation that Christ's resurrection enures Christian's resurrection (15:12-28)
X behavior in accord with the resurrection (15:29-34)
B' an explanation of how the resurrection is feasible (15:35-49)
A' the presentation of bodily resurrection on the authority of "mystery" (15:50-58).

This book was reviewed by David E. Garland, who while finding the book has presented a cogent argument, concludes that the center portion of the chiastic structure should be diagrammed as follow:

A the consequences if the resurrection of the dead is not true (15:12-19)
X the consequences since the resurrection is true (15:20-28)
A' the consequences if the resurrection is not true (15:29-34).

Garland thus concludes this "noble attempt to make sense of 1 Cor. 15:29" fails to demonstrate that the disputed verse is at the center of chapter 15.

Copyrighted 2006


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