Vincent M. Smiles provides a fresh look at the early Church and the faith with which they approached their dynamic, diverse community. With a brief introduction to each letter, Smiles brings to light issues such as authorship, dating, and historical situation. Smiles focuses on similarities and contrasts-such as eschatology, ecclesiology and the status of women--within these diverse, yet unified letters.
A reading of these letters as "partners in a conversation" provides both an understanding and inspiration for today's Christian society: inspiration to meet our challenges in faith with the same creativity as did the early Church.
With an understandable, yet comprehensive manner, this commentary will appeal to those interested in the changing early Church and its ancient wisdom.
Vincent M. Smiles, PhD, is chair of the Department of Theology at the College of Saint Benedict/Saint John's University, Minnesota. He is author of The Gospel and the Law in Galatia, published by Liturgical Press.
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