On-line version ISSN 2074-7705
Print version ISSN 1609-9982
Verbum Eccles. (Online) vol.30 n.1 Pretoria 2009
A biblical death-wish: Paul celebrating dying in Phil 1:211
University of Stellenbosch
Death features as an important concept in the Pauline writings in the New Testament for a number of reasons. However, the intriguing way in which the apostle at times addressed death as positive notion in itself, was traditionally related to Paul 's theological convictions and his understanding of the death of Christ in particular. The remarkably pointed way in which Paul positively celebrated death in Philippians 1:21 borders on invoking a martyrological paradigm, and raises questions about his convictions regarding life, and bodily existence in particular. Interesting analogies emerge when Paul's celebration of death is compared in a concluding section with contemporary, popular instances where death is - even if for different reasons - presented as "gain".
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1 Paper read at the international All Souls conference on "Death and Beyond", arranged by the Amsterdam School for Cultural Analysis (ASCA), Amsterdam, 1-2 November 2007.