Chris Tilling has taken the trouble to reply at some length to my review of his contribution to How God Became Jesus: The Real Origins of Belief in Jesus’ Divine Nature. I want to address the issues he raises, not with a view to picking a fight with him—honestly, Chris—but because the points he makes are astute and I think worth exploring further. Plus he’s annoyingly entertaining.
The main issues have to do with my so-called “lordship narrative”, how it relates to the Pauline data, and my dubious reasons for promoting it. I’ll get on to these weighty matters in another post, but to cover myself I will say this: I do not regard the “lordship narrative” (as I understand it) and a “divine christology” as mutually incompatible, but I do not think that the current proponents of an early high christology take adequate account of how the apocalyptic narrative works, not just in Paul but in the whole of the New Testament.
Meanwhile, here I want to deal with a particular bone of contention—1 Corinthians 8:12:
Thus, sinning against your brothers and wounding their conscience when it is weak, you sin against Christ.