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The topos of Divine Testimony in Luke-Acts
McConnell Jr., James R.

Eugene, OR: Pickwick, 2014 pp. xii + 322. $29.60


Description: In this study James McConnell addresses the concept of authoritative testimony in Luke-Acts. Specifically, he argues that particular elements in the narrative of Luke-Acts can be understood as instances of the topos of divine testimony through utterances and deeds, considered in some ancient rhetorical handbooks to be the most authoritative form of testimony when seeking to persuade an audience. McConnell claims the gods' testimony was used in ancient law courts and political speeches to persuade a judge of a defendant's guilt or innocence, and in attempts in public forums to convince others of a particular course of action. Similarly, the topos is used in ancient narratives and biographies to legitimate certain characters and discredit others. The instances of the topos of God's speech (both oral and through OT citations) and deeds in Luke-Acts are functioning in the same way.

Subjects: Bible, New Testament, Synoptic Gospels, Luke, Acts, Literature, Methods, Literary Approaches

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Review by Kyle R. Hughes
Published 8/18/2016
Citation: Kyle R. Hughes, review of James R. Mcconnell Jr., The topos of Divine Testimony in Luke-Acts, Review of Biblical Literature [http://www.bookreviews.org] (2016).


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