Acts 4-5 – SUMMARY

Acts 4-5 picks up threads discussed in previous podcasts: the “name theology” of biblical theology re-imagined in Jesus, the use of the OT by NT writers to make subtle theological assertions, and the “having all things in common” theme. We’ll discuss these items and draw attention to two new theological trajectories that are often missed: the first mention of Barnabas and its connection back to the reclamation of the nations launched in Acts 2 and how what the early believers in Jerusalem undermines the modern concept of “church” as a time and place.

Transcript 42 Acts 4-5

Acts 3

There are two focus points in this episode. The first is Acts 3:6, specifically the concept of the “name” and the NT understanding of the term “Christ” (Greek: Christos). Is the term merely an adjective (“anointed”)? Is it a proper name, like a last name? Or is it a title—and if so, who can bear that title? The second is Acts 3:18, where Peter claims, via the words of Luke, that “what God foretold by the mouth of all the prophets, that his Christ would suffer, he thus fulfilled.” The concept of a suffering messiah (mashiach) is not found in any verse in the Hebrew Bible / Old Testament. Peter does not cite a specific verse from the Hebrew Bible here, but makes a blanket statement, as though to say that, as a collective whole, the Old Testament points to a suffering messiah. How is this possible?

 

Here is the paper referenced in the show:

Christ – Anchor-Yale Bible Dictionary

Transcript 41 Acts 3

Acts 2:42-47

This passage has been used by scholars and lay folks alike to justify socialism, communism, or some sort of politically utopian society that has the veneer of socialism or communism. This isn’t the case at all. Jesus couldn’t have been clearer when he said, prior to the events of Acts 2, “my kingdom is not of this world” (John 18:36). The kingdom of God is not to be identified with any political or socio-economic system that guides statecraft. The concerns of God’s kingdom are other than those of an earthly state. Consequently, Acts 2:42-47 cannot legitimately be used to tell the state how to conduct its business. Such is not the concern of God’s kingdom. The political systems of men are to be evaluated by Biblical theology’s opposition to the coercive abuse of power and the sanctity and dignity of human life reflected in biblical teaching and divine law.

Transcript 39 Acts 2 v42-47