In The Last Days: Eschatology, the Spirit and the Church
September 30, 2021 03:30 PM - 04:00 PM On Demand Save the Date
…discussions on the Lukan Peter’s editorial move in Acts 2:17 and its implications for Luke’s eschatology are incomplete without considering the context of Isaiah 2:2 and the implication that Luke sees the early community at Pentecost as the new eschatological temple of God.
While the Lukan Peter makes six changes from the LXX version of Joel 2:28–32 in his Pentecost sermon (Acts 2:17–21), his first change, replacing μετὰ ταῦτα (after this) with ἐν ταῖς ἐσχάταις ἡμέραις (in the last days) has the most impact. Scholarship has seen this editorial move as heightening the eschatological level of Acts, indicating that Pentecost is the beginning of a new period of salvation history, or that Pentecost one in a number of events that characterise the “end times”.
This paper will take a different track, by establishing that this editorial move indicates that the Lukan Peter sees God establishing the new eschatological temple at Pentecost, through two arguments. First, with the universal outpouring of the Spirit of God and the cosmic portents, Joel 2:28–32 already exhibits a heightened eschatology. That is, this editorial move seems superfluous in the light of the clear eschatological setting of Joel 2:28–32. Second, the addition of ἐν ταῖς ἐσχάταις ἡμέραις is a direct quotation of the LXX’s version of Isaiah 2:2, which describes YHWH returning to Jerusalem and establishing an eschatological temple. Therefore, discussions on the Lukan Peter’s editorial move in Acts 2:17 and its implications for Luke’s eschatology are incomplete without considering the context of Isaiah 2:2 and the implication that Luke sees the early community at Pentecost as the new eschatological temple of God.
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