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The “Word of God” and retribution theology in Luke-acts

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Chapter Summary

It is widely accepted that Luke wrote his two-volume work to be a continuation of biblical history. Two of the many features that link Luke-Acts with OT historiography are his use of the phrase ?the word of God/the Lord? as a part of his depiction of the ministry of Jesus and the Christian movement and the idea that divine retribution plays a role in the flow of historical events. These themes are connected via their relationship to the prophetic character of OT historiography and of Luke-Acts. The main point to be explored in this chapter is how these themes get reconfigured in Luke?s work, especially in Acts. This reconfiguring, it argues, is primarily due to the changed place of the people of Israel in Luke-Acts vis-à-vis the OT narratives and to the emphasis on the eschatological nature of God?s retributive action in Luke-Acts.

Keywords: biblical history; Christian movement; divine retribution; Israel; Luke-Acts; ministry of Jesus; OT historiography; word of God

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