From Brepols, Turnhout, Belgium
Instrumenta Patristica et Mediaevalia, no. 41
J. G. Mueller,
L'Ancien Testament dans l'ecclésiologie des Pères.
Une lecture des "Constitutions apostoliques"
634 p., 160 x 240 mm, 2005, Hardback
ISBN 2-503-51631-9, EUR 120.00
Date de publication prévue pour/Publication date scheduled for Février/February 2005
Circa 380 in Syria, an anonymous redactor produced the Apostolic Constitutions, a pseudo-apostolic reworking of older church order texts (Didache, Apostolic Tradition, Didascalia, etc.). Until now this collection has mostly interested historians of the liturgy and canon law of the ancient Church. While putting the Apostolic Constitutions into their historical and literary and always attending to their complex redactional history, this study presents the ecclesiology expressed in the diverse prescriptions, exhortations, and prayers of this collection. Father Mueller tries especially to highlight the manner in which the redactor of the Apostolic Constitutions adapted traditional techniques of Old Testament exegesis in order to represent the contours and foundations of church institutions that had greatly evolved between the time when the sources were composed and the one in which he was living. From this point of view, the present study examines closely the doctrine of the Apostolic Constitutions on the presbyterate and penitential institutions, and it details the notion of the divine foundation of church institutions at work in this collection. By showing the contact between exegesis, anti-Nicene theology, and pseudo-apostolicity in the Apostolic Constitutions, this study aims to demonstrate the properly theological and ecclesiological interest of the collection. Father Mueller shows that an attentive reading of the Apostolic Constitutions invites us to renew the recourse to the Old Testament in contemporary ecclesiology, as well as calling for a deepened reflection on the relations between Trinitarian theology and the doctrine of the church about itself.
Main Subject: 263 - Religion & Theology / Christian Theology & Theologians / Western Fathers (c. 160-735)
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