Role of the Rule of Faith in the Formation of the New Testament Canon According to Eusebius of Caesarea

Author: Armstrong, Jonathan J.
Year:2014
Pages:324
ISBN:0-7734-4254-5
978-0-7734-4254-2
Price:219.95
The book evaluates the canonization process from a new angle in that, according to Eusebius of Caesarea, the Rule of Faith served as a criterion of canonicity, encompassing both the subcriteria of apostolicity and catholicity.

Reviews

“Too often canon history has been a record of lists of books or of explicit statements about particular books, and too little attention has been given to the transmission of the living faith of which authoritative scriptures were an integral part. Dr. Armstrong seeks to correct that situation by placing the recognition of authoritative books in the doctrinal developments and polemical controversies in which the texts were used and in which they were appealed to.”
-Dr. Everett Ferguson,
Abilene Christian University


“The dual resonance of the word “canon” often goes unnoticed, or unconnected, when the “Canon of Scripture” is viewed as something different than the patristic “rule of faith”. Jonathan shows that these two things must be brought together. I truly believe he is onto something important here, something typically overlooked. This book has the potential to launch a new trajectory in canon studies.”
-Dr. Bryan Litfin,
Moody Bible Institute


“This is a fascinating and extremely instructive piece of scholarship…by the breadth of knowledge that the author possesses in the field of study and its relevant subfields, and by the skill with which he conveys this knowledge to his readers, this manuscript will constitute a useful resource for anyone wanting to get up to date with recent thinking in these difficult areas.”
-Professor Marc Debanné,
University of Sudbury/Laurentian University, Canada


"... Armstrong as provided a useful, well-researched, and balanced look at canon formation in Early Christianity through the lens of the rule of faith. ...Armstrong's volume is an important contribution to the study of the New Testament canon and the rule of faith."
Dr. Michael J. Kruger,
Reformed Theological Seminary


Table of Contents

Foreword by Everett Ferguson
Preface
Acknowledgements
Abbreviations of Standard Resources
Abbreviations of Latin Treatises
I. Canon and Creed in the Ante-Nicene Period:
The Critical Reappraisal of the Formation of the New Testament Canon
A. The Methodology of the Present Study
B. The Nineteenth and Twentieth-Century Critique of Eusebius’s Historiography: Marcion as the Founder of the New Testament Canon
1. Ferdinand Christian Baur (1792–1860)
2. Adolf von Harnack (1851–1930)
3. Walter Bauer (1877–1960)
4. Hans von Campenhausen (1903–1989)
C. The Rule of Faith as a Criterion of Canonicity according to Eusebius
II. The Rule of Faith as a Criterion of Apostolicity:
Irenaeus’s Influence in Eusebius’s Account of the Formation of the New Testament Canon
A. Eusebius’s Historiography of the Apostolic Age
1. The Theological Foundations of the Apostolic Age
2. The Chronological Boundaries of the Apostolic Age
3. The Rule of Faith as a Criterion of Apostolicity
B. Eusebius’s Reception of the Rule of Faith
1. Clement of Rome and the Rule of Tradition
2. Ignatius of Antioch and Confessional Orthodoxy
3. Justin Martyr and the Ancient Christian Liturgy
C. Exceptions that Prove the Rule
1. The Case of the Paschal Controversy: Eusebius’s Reading of Conflicting Apostolic Traditions
2. The Case of Papias of Hierapolis: Eusebius’s Reading of Ancient Unorthodoxy
D. Conclusion
III. The Rule of Faith as a Criterion of Catholicity: Origen’s Influence in Eusebius’s Account of the Formation of the New Testament Canon
A. The Origenian Contribution to the Eusebian Paradigm of Canonicity
1. The Separation of Sacred and Secular Literature in the Curriculum of the School of Alexandria
2. The Threefold Division of Candidate Documents: “Recognized,” “Disputed,” and “Spurious”
3. The Rule of Faith as a Criterion of Catholicity
B. The Criterion of Catholicity and the Reception of Books of Uncertain Apostolicity
1. The Catholic Epistles: 1, 2 Peter, James, Jude, 1, 2, 3 John
2. The Epistle to the Hebrews: A Question of Apostolic Authorship
3. The Johannine Apocalypse: A Question of Orthodox Doctrine
C. Conclusion
IV. The Genesis of the New Testament Commentary and the Formation of the New Testament Canon
A. The Advent of the New Testament Commentary
B. Origen and the Development of the New Testament Commentary as a Genre of Early Christian Literature
C. Origen as the Progenitor of the New Testament Canon
V. The Rule of Faith as a Criterion of Canonicity: Historical Summary and Theological Reflection
A. The Role of the Rule of Faith in the Formation of the New Testament Canon according to Eusebius
B. The Theological Implications of the Historical Survey
1. The Protestant Problem of the Canon
2. The Canon as Theologically Closed but Historically Open
Primary Bibliography /Secondary Bibliography /Index