San Clemente was one of the Apostolic Fathers
and author of the Letter to the Corinthians.
Scholars of religion, theology, and the New Testament explore how and if Paul was received in the collection of works known as the Apostolic Fathers
, some of the earliest Christian writings to follow Paul's time.
The Apostolic Fathers
are the men who comprised the earliest generation of post-Biblical Christian writers, that is, after the apostles whose writings make up the books of the New Testament and before the unification of the Christian church at Emperor Constantine's Council of Nicea in 325A.D.
The excursus sets up the discussion of the ancient church and the theological debates between the Apostolic Fathers
, the Apologists, the Heresiologists such as Irenaeus of Lyon, and the doctrinal controversies in the Arian Crisis, the Council of Nicaea, Alexandria versus the Syrian Church, and the Eastern versus the Western Church.
Among his topics are whether rethinking hell is apostasy or a new reformation, historical examples of divine justice, the parable of the sheep and the goats, Galatians and Corinthians, apostolic fathers
and their successors, Augustine's case for unending torment, and a kinder and gentler traditionalism.
The Apostolic Fathers
are five Early Christian authors who lived and wrote in the second half of the 1st century and the first half of the 2nd century.
P.'s survey of the earliest period of Christian literature, including the Apostolic Fathers
as well as the apologists, covers territory familiar to all historians of Christian literature, but it offers a clear and concise precis of some of the foundational authors and works of the time, such as Clement of Rome, Ignatius of Antioch, and Melito of Sardis.
Twenty-three readings (nine from the New Testament, six from the Septuagint, four from the Apostolic Fathers
, and four from early creeds) lead the reader through a review of morphology, grammar and vocabulary, and verse by verse analysis.
(2.) Ignatius (of Antioch), "Ignatius: Epistle to the Ephesians," Early Christian Writings: The Apostolic Fathers
(Harmondsworth: Penguin, 1968), 20.
Then in a broad sweep of theological history the author, beginning with the Apostolic Fathers
and ending with the contributions of nineteenth-century theologians, supports his basic contention that the Bible's value as a list of prescriptions and proscriptions, is limited in today's world.
Gospels were recorded with Apostolic authority, authorship was confirmed by Apostolic Fathers
such as Iraneus, they were written so early that legend is not a factor, and the Epistles were written even earlier .
Paul, then embodied in the writings of the New Testament and the Apostolic Fathers
. The church exists to preserve and teach that body of truth.