A summary of my book, Till Jesus Comes: Origins of Christian Apocalyptic Expectation (Hendrickson Publishers, 1996).
This monograph of under 200 pages emerged from my 1982 Ph.D. dissertation which was submitted to the University of Nottingham (U. K.) and entitled “Eschatological Delay in Jewish and Early Christian Apocalyptic Literature.” The research was supervised by my esteemed mentor, Prof. James D. G. Dunn, now Professor of New Testament at the University of Durham.
The research followed my personal interest for the balance of my professional life regarding the theological tension between imminent expectation of the End (or Second Coming of Christ) in biblical eschatology and the many centuries which have obviously intervened till our present time. However, this was a biblical study (primarily New Testament), but with much recourse to relevant non-canonical Jewish documents which reflected a tension between eschatological expectation and delay in fulfillment.
My book is an abridgement of my dissertation, but also an elaboration in adding more Old Testament background, updating the research, and attempting to make the discussion more pastorally relevant for the church today.
I have received interesting if mixed reviews. The most encouraging reviews have appeared in the Journal of Evangelical Theology (June, 1999), 334f. and for the Web page of the Society of Biblical Literature (5/24/99). The latter says the book “should become a standard treatment of the subject of apocalypticism.
It is my prayer that this book will help Christians be people of hope, while at the same time reckoning with the mystery of God’s own timing in the unfolding and climax of salvation history.
Published articles I have written include the following:
This is a paper that was delivered in November, 2002 at a session of the annual meeting of the Evangelical Theological Society. This was received and discussed at the "Charismatic Themes in Luke-Acts" study group. It is based on a paper I gave earlier in March at the annual meeting of the Society for Pentecostal Studies, but includes some data concerning the world-wide influence of charismatic spirituality, with thoughts for ecumenical considerations.
“The Biblica Basis of Missions,” Emphasis on Faith and Living (March-April, 1998), p. 11. This is the journal of the Missionary Church, with which I am an ordained minister. The article shows how Luke’s version of what we call the Great Commission (24:45-49) is an interpretation of the Servant of Yahweh mission found at points in Isaiah 42-53. The church’s mandate for reaching the world is firmly rooted in this mission, as we understand ourselves to be those who are to fulfill the Jesus mission, who Himself was the fulfillment of Isaiah’s Servant of Yahweh. I draw upon Luke 24 and Acts 13:46-47.
“Which Translation is Best for You,” Charisma (November, 1997), p. 59. In this article I present distinctives of five modern translations or revisions (NKJV, NAS, NIV, NRSV, and NLT). I conclude that it is advisable to use both a somewhat literal translation along with one that is more interpretive. The New Living Translation (NLT) is the most interpretive of those discussed, and is a revision of the Living Bible, which was more of a paraphrase than a “translation.”
“Titus 3:5-6: A Window on World-Wide Pentecost,” in the Journal of Pentecostal Theology 8 (1996), 53-62. In this essay I seek to show the commonality between the above Titus text and Acts. I refer to both literary and historical factors. In this study “I find reasons to see the dynamic of the Pentecostal Spirit as found in Acts serving as a presupposition for understanding Spirit reception in the Pauline mission and even beyond within first-century Christianity” (p. 53).
“Paul’s Preaching--Cognitive and Charismatic,” in Spirit and Renewal: Essays in honor of J. Rodman Williams, ed. M. W. Wilson. Journal of Pentecostal Theology Supplement Series 5 (Sheffield Academic Press), 1994 (pp. 145-156). Here I compare the accounts of Paul’s preaching as recorded in Acts with Paul’s own description of his preaching as found in his letters. The Acts accounts show a kind of apologetic thrust, as Paul sought to appeal cognitively to the reasoning of his audiences. Paul’s own letters show his proclamation as charismatic. We thus have the legacy of a broad witness in the character of early church preaching. Both cognitive and charismatic.
“A Lesson from Matthew’s Gospel for Charismatic Renewal,” in Faces of Renewal: Studies in Honor of Stanley M. Horton Presented on His 70th Birthday, ed. Paul Elbert (Hendrickson, 1988), pp. 48-63. In this essay I see Matthew’s Gospel addressing a charismatic community which needed admonition in wedding charismatic activity with the ethical and moral injunctions stemming from Jesus’ teaching. The presence of prophets in the community addressed by Matthew is significant. “Righteousness” is also a key term in this Gospel.