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A Significant Decade: The Trajectory Of The Hellenistic Epistolary Thanksgiving

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Chapter Summary

This chapter discusses comparison of Pauline thanksgivings with the Hellenistic Greek letter form. In the letters written by Toubias and Dromon, a conditional clause precedes the expression of thanksgiving in such a way that the thanksgiving presumes and is dependent on the satisfaction of the condition: the recipient of the letter is in good health and all is well with him. The motivation for thanksgiving was a communal salvation experience, the inhabitants of Jerusalem and the Judeans were saved by God from grave dangers. The thanksgivings of 2 Macc 1:11-12 and 1 Thess 1:2-5 share a common epistolary setting insofar as they are written by a charismatic leader to a community. Paul's thanksgiving shares with the thanksgivings of the earlier papyri letters a similar function, that is, an appeal to the good will of the addressee(s).

Keywords: God; Hellenistic Greek letter form; Jerusalem; Judeans; papyri letters; Pauline thanksgivings



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