The annual conference of The Society for the Study of Early Christianity was a resounding success on Saturday with over 150 people packing a lecture theatre at Macquarie University.
The conference focused on the early church in Corinth and heard from a dozen of the worlds foremost biblical scholars with Professor Laurence Welborn also launching a new book called ‘The Content and Setting of the Gospel Tradition’.
The book was a collaboration between the Ancient History Department at Macquarie University and the Australian College of Theology and draws on 17 New Testament scholars from Australia to explore the political, social and religious context of the bible, along with an examination of the contribution of archaeology and textual criticism to biblical studies.
Professor Welborn said ‘The Content and Setting of the Gospel Tradition’ was testament to the strong relationship between Macquarie University and the Australian College of Theology, built over many years.
“That relationship has resulted in this superb introduction to both the content and the setting of the New Testament,” he said.
Despite the book having just hit the shelves, it is expected to appear in 2012 as a textbook in many of the colleges associated with the Australia College of Theology.
Another highlight of the conference was the presentation of a paper by University of Queensland lecturer Dr Amelia Brown. Dr Brown focused in on archaeological and epigraphic evidence for the legacy of St Paul in Corinth.
“Awareness of Paul’s ministry is apparent at Corinth in letters of Byzantine bishops, inscriptions and the placement of churches,” she said.
“Corinthians successfully constructed both concrete buildings and local legends over several centuries to attract Christian travellers and maintain the memory of Paul’s visit.
Dr Brown’s lecturer drew correlations between modern day tourism to Greece and religious pilgrimages to Corinth in the 4th-8th century AD.
The Content and Setting of the Gospel Tradition can be purchased Koorong Bookstore.
New book on Early New Testament Studies “Superb"
By: Clayton Hinds
Monday, 16 May 2011, 7:13 (EST)