Sunday, 25 September 2016

A Matter of time

Okay, so I've been gathering today a lot of my thinking about NT chronology into one place. Not the chronology of the dates at which the books were written, but the chronology of the events of first-generation Christianity. Little, if any, is original to me, but I figured that I would put it up here for the interested.

April, 30--Jesus executed.

Between April, 30, and October 31--the establishment of a collegium apostolorum in Jerusalem, which begins the work of interpreting Jewish scripture in light of Jesus. The persecution under Paul. Due to this persecution, the first significant expansion as Christians travel at least as far afield as Cyprus. There may have been previous expansion, as pilgrims converted in Jerusalem returned to their homelands (cf. Acts 2). This appears to have constituted the real foundation of the Antioch community.

October, 31--Paul converted.

34--Paul flees Damascus for Jerusalem.

41--the persecution under Agrippa; James, son of Zebedee executed; Peter flees Jerusalem.

42--Peter makes his first visit to Rome.

43--Mark goes to Alexandria (possibly: still thinking about that one).

44--death of Agrippa.

46--Paul's second visit to Jerusalem, i.e. the famine relief visit (cf. Acts 11, paralleled by Gal. 2:1-10).

48--the Jerusalem conference (i.e. Acts 15).

51--Paul before Gallio in Corinth.

57--Paul returns to Jerusalem, gets arrested and is incarcerated in Caesarea.

59--Paul sent to Rome late in the year.

60--Paul arrives in Rome.

62--Paul released from his first Roman captivity. Might or might not have traveled on to Spain. Perhaps also laboured again in the eastern Mediterranean. Also, the death of James the Just.

66--the Jerusalem church relocates to Pella (the one in the Decapolis, not Macedonia). This is probably just the core of the community. One does not imagine that every second member went to the same place, and I'd hardly rule out the possibility that many chose to remain in Jerusalem itself.

Sometime between 64 and 68--Peter and Paul are both executed in Rome.

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