Academic journal article Theological Studies

Aposteldekret Und Antikes Vereinswesen: Gemeinschaft Und Ihre Ordnung

Academic journal article Theological Studies

Aposteldekret Und Antikes Vereinswesen: Gemeinschaft Und Ihre Ordnung

Article excerpt

APOSTELDEKRET UND ANTIKES VEREINSWESEN: GEMEINSCHAFF LIND IHRE ORDNUNG. Edited by Markus Ohler. Wissenschaftliche Untersuchungen zum Neuen Testament 280. Tubingen: Mohr Siebeck, 2011. Pp. xv + 411. 114 [euro].

The volume collects 13 papers delivered at a symposium at the University of Vienna in February 2009. The symposium's topic was "The Apostolic Decree and Ancient Voluntary Associations"; its purpose was to show that the decree of Acts 15 can be understood only in relation to the variety of associations of people that were such an important part of ancient society.

Since the 19th century, scholars have studied the epigraphical and literary evidence for Roman collegia and Greek thiasoi in order to compare their organizational structures with those of early Christian communities. Voluntary associations may have been organized for cultic reasons around the devotion to a particular divinity, or for noncultic fellowship within a particular trade or profession like linen workers or firefighters. One of the more interesting of these groups is the "funerary" club that provided for the obsequies associated with death and burial. …

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