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The Resource Alms : charity, reward, and atonement in early Christianity, David J. Downs

Alms : charity, reward, and atonement in early Christianity, David J. Downs

Label
Alms : charity, reward, and atonement in early Christianity
Title
Alms
Title remainder
charity, reward, and atonement in early Christianity
Statement of responsibility
David J. Downs
Creator
Author
Subject
Language
eng
Summary
  • Christianity has often understood the death of Jesus on the cross as the sole means for forgiveness of sin. Despite this tradition, David Downs traces the early and sustained presence of yet another means by which Christians imagined atonement for sin: merciful care for the poor. In Alms: Charity, Reward, and Atonement in Early Christianity, Downs begins by considering the economic context of almsgiving in the Greco-Roman world, a context in which the overwhelming reality of poverty cultivated the formation of relationships of reciprocity and solidarity. Downs then provides detailed examinations of almsgiving and the rewards associated with it in the Old Testament, Second Temple Judaism, and the New Testament. He then attends to early Christian texts and authors in which a theology of atoning almsgiving is developed--2 Clement, the Didache, the Epistle of Barnabas, Polycarp, Clement of Alexandria, Origen, and Cyprian. In this historical and theological reconstruction, Downs outlines the emergence of a model for the atonement of sin in Christian literature of the first three centuries of the Common Era, namely, atoning almsgiving, or the notion that providing material assistance to the needy cleanses or covers sin. Downs shows that early Christian advocacy of almsgiving's atoning power is located in an ancient economic context in which fiscal and social relationships were deeply interconnected. Within this context, the concept of atoning almsgiving developed in large part as a result of nascent Christian engagement with scriptural traditions that present care for the poor as having the potential to secure future reward, including heavenly merit and even the cleansing of sin, for those who practice mercy. Downs thus reveals how sin and its solution were socially and ecclesiologically embodied, a vision that frequently contrasted with disregard for the social body, and the bodies of the poor, in Docetic and Gnostic Christianity
  • Alms, in the end, illuminates the challenge of reading Scripture with the early church, for numerous patristic witnesses held together the conviction that salvation and atonement for sin come through the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus and the affirmation that the practice of mercifully caring for the needy cleanses or covers sin. Perhaps the ancient Christian integration of charity, reward, and atonement has the potential to reshape contemporary Christian traditions in which those spheres are separated. (Publisher)
Cataloging source
DLC
http://library.link/vocab/creatorDate
1977-
http://library.link/vocab/creatorName
Downs, David J.
Dewey number
248.4/6
Index
index present
LC call number
BV4639
LC item number
.D69 2016
Literary form
non fiction
Nature of contents
bibliography
http://library.link/vocab/subjectName
  • Charity
  • Redemption
  • Atonement
  • Charity
  • Redemption
  • Atonement
Label
Alms : charity, reward, and atonement in early Christianity, David J. Downs
Instantiates
Publication
Copyright
Bibliography note
Includes bibliographical references (pages 287-324) and index
Carrier category
volume
Carrier category code
nc
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Content category
text
Content type code
txt
Content type MARC source
rdacontent
Contents
Introduction: What can wash away my sin? -- Redeem your sins with acts of mercy : charity and reward in the Hebrew-Aramaic Bible and its Greek translation -- Merciful deeds deliver from death : charity and reward in the Apocrypha -- I desire mercy, not sacrifice : cult criticism and atoning almsgiving? -- Give alms with respect to the things within : charity and reward in the Synoptic Gospels and Acts -- Storing up treasure for a good foundation : almsgiving and reward in the Pauline Epistles -- Love covers a multitude of sins : atoning almsgiving in 1 Peter 4:8 and its early Christian reception -- Merciful practice is good as repentance for sin : resurrection, atonement, and care for the poor in second-century Christianity -- By alms and faith sins are purged away : almsgiving and atonement in early Christian scriptural exegesis
Control code
ocn918591008
Dimensions
24 cm
Extent
ix, 340 pages
Isbn
9781602589995
Lccn
2015027496
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
Media type code
n
System control number
(OCoLC)918591008
Label
Alms : charity, reward, and atonement in early Christianity, David J. Downs
Publication
Copyright
Bibliography note
Includes bibliographical references (pages 287-324) and index
Carrier category
volume
Carrier category code
nc
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Content category
text
Content type code
txt
Content type MARC source
rdacontent
Contents
Introduction: What can wash away my sin? -- Redeem your sins with acts of mercy : charity and reward in the Hebrew-Aramaic Bible and its Greek translation -- Merciful deeds deliver from death : charity and reward in the Apocrypha -- I desire mercy, not sacrifice : cult criticism and atoning almsgiving? -- Give alms with respect to the things within : charity and reward in the Synoptic Gospels and Acts -- Storing up treasure for a good foundation : almsgiving and reward in the Pauline Epistles -- Love covers a multitude of sins : atoning almsgiving in 1 Peter 4:8 and its early Christian reception -- Merciful practice is good as repentance for sin : resurrection, atonement, and care for the poor in second-century Christianity -- By alms and faith sins are purged away : almsgiving and atonement in early Christian scriptural exegesis
Control code
ocn918591008
Dimensions
24 cm
Extent
ix, 340 pages
Isbn
9781602589995
Lccn
2015027496
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
Media type code
n
System control number
(OCoLC)918591008

Library Locations

    • William Smith Morton Library (Richmond Campus)Borrow it
      3401 Brook Road, Richmond, VA, 23227, US
      37.5789301 -77.4492905
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