I’ll never forget it, as I peeled back the shipping papers to reveal my green, hardcovered, 3rd ed of Michael Holmes digloted Apostolic Fathers I knew that I had in my posession something spectacular. “Now here is what the early church was “really” like, no form criticism needed to discern multiple communitites and redactions underneath historical narratives, just Ignatius and Polycarp, Clement and Diocletian. I do enjoy reading the AF’s.
As we have spent some considerable time unpacking foundational elements of Christian Authority, I have decided to discuss Authority in the Apostolic Fathers. In part because it is just fun, in part because it is useful to test my Protestant assumptions, and to test my “Catholic” (for the record when I just say Catholic I mean both Roman and Orthodox, when I want to be more specific I’ll use the proper terms) siblings (I know at least one Catholic who reads this blog, perhaps others will come and test my ideas).
Now, I know this will not be anything like the quality of a peer reviewed journal, but I am gonna attempt to be thorough; so if anyone wants to use any of my “research” in their own work (VERY unlikely I know, but my ego is large) then all I ask is that you site me.
One can assume the standard reference works: 3rd ed. BDAG, BDB, NA 27, Holmes 3rd ed, LSL 12th I will basically just be repeating what they tell me