Paul’s community formation in 1 Thessalonians: The creation of symbolic boundaries

HTS Theological Studies 71 (1) (2015)
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This article presents how Paul, in 1 Thessalonians, executes the process of the formation of the Thessalonian community. Using the sociological concept of symbolic boundaries, it is argued that the resources – the kerygmatic narrative, the local narratives, and the ethical norms – that Paul incorporates into the letter take an essential role to promote the converts to derive a cooperative identity from the community to which they belong and to strengthen the distinction between them and the larger society. By providing internal consensus and external separation, the resources serve to construct and maintain the Thessalonian community that is internally united and externally distinct.



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“st. Paul In Greece: The Letters To The Thessalonians,”.T. W. Manson - 1953 - Bulletin of the John Rylands Library 35 (2):428-447.
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