I am in the midst of an unusual period of 'apostolic' activity. No, I am not planting churches (the essence, in my view, of apostolicity) but I am engaging with the apostles and their associates.
Today I lead a seminar in Rangiora on the theology of Paul. By Wednesday I need to have completed a paper on Luke for a one day conference on Luke at Carey Baptist College - I may say more about Luke after that - the gist of my paper is that he has no reliability as an independent historian! Meantime work has begun on the next Lenten Studies book to be published by Theology House in time for 2015, based on John's Gospel. In early July I begin teaching a paper on the Book of Revelation (written by John the apostle? Another John?) for the University of Otago.
Such engagement is very fulfilling but it raises many questions. One question is the extent to which the New Testament is a collection of diverse theologies which have a degree of unity drawing them together but which, when all is said and done, do not quite fit with each other. (Prompted by a remark or two I have read in the past week) do John and Paul, for example, share the same approach to communicating the gospel to the Hellenistic world? Does John connect the gospel comfortably with that world while Paul offers a radical critique of it?
Of course such diversity in the early church brings the thought to mind that it was a prototype of the Anglican church we experience today: diversity with strained unity.
I must be off to Rangiora ...!