Episode: In this third episode of a mini-series on "faith" (pistis), Jeanette Hagen Pifer brings a different method to bear on pistis, looking at what we might glean from wider conceptual categories related to "faith," like persuasion and boasting. And she was a missionary in the former Soviet Union before becoming a professor! Join her and OnScript co-host Matthew W. Bates, as they discuss Jeanette's new book, Faith as Participation.

Guest: Jeanette Hagen Pifer is Assistant Professor of New Testament at Biola University She has served in a variety of ministry capacities including evangelistic and humanitarian work with orphans in the former Soviet Union, helping to facilitate for theological and ministry training around the world, and serving in a church plant in Whittier, Calif. She completed her Ph.D., studying under Professor John Barclay at Durham University. Her research focused on the Pauline concept of faith. Hagen has presented academic papers at a number of conferences in the U.S. and in Europe. She also contributed to the Lightfoot Legacy, a three volume set of previously unpublished commentaries by this foremost English NT scholar of the 19th century. Prior to coming to Biola, Hagen taught at Cranmer Hall in Durham England, a theological college focused on training individuals called to full-time Christian service.

The Book: Jeanette Hagen Pifer, Faith as Participation: An Exegetical Study of Some Key Pauline Texts (WUNT 486; Mohr Siebeck, 2019). Jeanette Hagen Pifer contends that several of the apparent conundrums in recent Pauline scholarship turn out to derive from an inadequate understanding of what Paul means by faith. By first exploring the question of what Paul means by faith outside of the classic justification passages in Romans and Galatians, she reveals faith as an active and productive mode of human existence. Yet this existence is not a form of human self-achievement. On the contrary, faith is precisely the denial of self-effort and a dependence upon the prior gracious work of Christ. In this way, faith is self-negating and self-involving participation in the Christ-event. (Publisher’s description, abridged).

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