Date of Award

1-2009

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts in Theological Studies (MATS)

Department

Seminary

First Advisor

Kent Yinger

Second Advisor

Roger Nam

Abstract

This thesis argues that patronage is a crucial and not yet sufficiently utilized interpretive lens to understanding xcxpK (grace) in Paul's letter to Titus. It introduces patronage in the Greco-Roman world and surveys definitions and characteristics. It offers descriptions of the roles of clients and patrons. It discusses different forms of patronage: personal patronage, friendship, public benefaction, literary patronage, divine patronage, political patronage and brokerage. It also considers the relationship of patronage and benefaction. A major focus is a consideration of the usage of grace (xapic.:) in patronage looking to inscriptions, letters, and literature from the era. The influence on Hellenistic Judaism is also considered. The thesis examines the evidence of the patronage background of grace in the New Testament and in the letters of Paul. In particular, it examines the importance of generalized reciprocity in understanding the importance of gratitude in responding to grace. It suggests that Titus 2:9-11 is seen in the context of patronage as a passage which highlights the benefaction of grace that results in a life of moral virtue in the present world. It also suggests that Titus 3:3-8 is an example of patronal synkrisis, a literary form that highlights the honor of the benefactor by recounting the effects of grace received. These significant texts evidence the importance of the patronage background of xap1c;: (grace).

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