From Palestine to Persia one may trace the rise of Wisdom literature (the teachings of a sage concerning the hidden purposes of the deity) and apocalyptic traditions (referring to a belief in the dramatic intervention of a god in human and natural events) that represent these central concernsi.e., national destiny, the importance of traditional lore, the saving power of kingship, and the revival of mythic images. 7.6; Comm. 2.18182; Comm. The Hellenization of Christianity is a long-standing and notoriously contentious historiographical construct in early Christian studies. 12 Tzamalikos, Panayiotis, Origen: Cosmology and Ontology of Time (Supplements to Vigiliae Christianae 77; Leiden: Brill, 2006) 8081Google Scholar. For more on the problem of evil in Origen, see Wrmer, Anneliese Meis, El problema del mal en Orgenes: importancia y significado teolgico del tiempo en la argumentacin sobre el mal del Peri archon III, 124 (Santiago: Pontificia Universidad Catlica de Chile, 1988)Google Scholar; Roukema, Riemer, L'origine du mal selon Origne et dans ses sources, RHPR 83 (2003) 40520Google Scholar; Scott, Mark S. M., Journey Back to God: Origen on the Problem of Evil (American Academy of Religion Academy Series; Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2012) 2340, 5052CrossRefGoogle Scholar. A key factor in the confluence of Hellenism and Christianity came in the first century, with the apostolic church's shift of focus "from the closed world of the Synagogue and the Law to the cosmopolitan society of the Roman-Hellenistic world," writes Christopher Dawson in "The Formation of Christendom.". Jean Hering, tude sur la doctrine de la chute et de la prexistence des mes chez Clment d'Alexandrie (Bibliothque de lcole des hautes tudes, sciences religieuses 38; Paris: E. Leroux, 1923) 2834. MAKING APOLOGETICS APPEALING TO AFRICANS: A Clarion Call to Defending the Christian Faith in Africa, Daniel Boyarin, Apartheid Comparative Religion in the Second Century: Some Theory and a Case Study, The Journal of Medieval and Early Modern Studies, vol. Each of these native religions also had diasporic centres that exhibited marked change during the Hellenistic period. 6.14. 1.6.2 (GK 220, 81.1112/Butterworth, 154). There follows (4) a brief argument against the pre-existence of the soul of Christ (ibid., 9394), an error attributed to the English translation of the phrase ab initio creaturae (Princ. The Hellenistic world is that world that was created after the conquests of the near east by Alexander the Great at the end of the fourth century B.C. "useRatesEcommerce": false Hellenistic religion was based on a polytheistic tradition of hundreds of Greek gods, conflicting with Christianity's adherence to belief in one God. See esp. In Dawson's words, this "synthesis has remained the foundation of Western culture and has never been destroyed.". Lev. We do not know just what is meant by "the link between the Palestinian and hellenistic development of Judaism." Jo. Christologische Forschungen und Perspektiven (Freiburg: Herder, 1975)Google Scholar; Scheffczyk, Leo, Tendenzen und Brennpunkte der neueren Problematik um die Hellenisierung des Christentums (Sitzungsberichte der Bayerischen Akademie der Wissenschaften; Munich: Verlag der Bayerischen Akademie der Wissenschaften, 1982)Google Scholar; Meijering, E. P., Die Hellenisierung des Christentums im Urteil Adolf von Harnacks (Verhandelingen der Koninklijke Nederlandse Akademie van Wetenschappen, Afd. The historical Hellenistic Age is defined as the period from the death of the Greco-Macedonian conqueror Alexander the Great (323 bc) to the conquest of Egypt by Rome (30 bc), but the influence of the Hellenistic religions extended to the time of Constantine, the first Christian Roman emperor (d. ad 337); these religions are confined to those that were active within the Mediterranean world. Matt. Ronald E. Heine; FC 80; Washington, D.C.: Catholic University of America Press, 1989] 14344). 50 Princ. 88.34 that parallels Origen's lists (Philosophical Tradition and the Self, in Late Antiquity: A Guide to the Postclassical World [ed. Note as well that Origen treated many biblical pericopes as symbolic of pre-existence. Let us know if you have suggestions to improve this article (requires login). Matt. maps, archaeology & sources. For more on the Aristotelian and Stoic views of embodiment, and their presence in Christian circles, see; Waszink, J. H., Quinti Septimi Florentis Tertulliani De Anima (Supplements to Vigiliae Christianae 100; Leiden: Brill, 2010) 34247Google Scholar. I then provide a theological synthesis of the three texts and discuss the potential of constructing a better understanding of the development of theology proper in ante-Nicene, early Christianity. 72e77c; Resp. Both Roman Catholicism and Protestantism belong to what can be termed Hellenistic Christianity, that is, a form of Christianity heavily influenced by Greek philosophies, particularly Gnosticism. 54 Princ. The influence of the latter precipitated a debasement of Christianity, the ossification of its teachings, or more seriously, the infiltration of heresy. @TJ. Ic}Z-i"L\/E%u3%K.\a3wny2 The great Church Father compared Classical literature to the gold of the Egyptians, which God permitted the Hebrews to use on their journey to the Promised Land even though it had once been used in pagan religious practice. The present version was revised while I was a fellow at the Center for Philosophy of Religion (Notre Dame, 20122013). Thus, while not formally included in the acts of the council, the bishops certainly had Justinian's letter and these anathemas fresh in mind when they formally condemned Origen at the council. 3.5.4; Comm. However, creationism becomes, according to J. N. D. Kelly, the prevalent Greek theory by the fourth century (Early Christian Doctrines [5th ed. Each of these native traditions likewise underwent hellenization (modifications based on Greek cultural ideas), but in a manner frequently different from their diasporic counterparts. Glawe, Walter, Die Hellenisierung des Christentums in der Geschichte der Theologie von Luther bis auf die Gegenwart (Neue Studien zur Geschichte der Theologie und der Kirche 15; Berlin: Trowitzsch und Sohn, 1912)Google Scholar; Grillmeier, Aloys, HellenisierungJudaisierung des Christentums als Deuteprinzipien der Geschichte des kirchlichen Dogmas: Mit ihm und in ihm. 5 See Harnack's distinction between Jewish and Hellenistic views of pre-existence and Origen's illustration of the latter variety (History of Dogma, 1:318-31).Note as well the perspective by one of Origen's most important modern biographers, Eugne de Faye, in his Origen and His Work (trans. ; London: A. The German and Swedish Lutheran Mission was a major and pioneering Protestant mission society that started its mission work in Tamil Nadu. Jo. Titus 3:1011)that is spoken of hereticsif perchance, on the subjects that we mentioned above, he seems to introduce an opinion, whatever it may be, that sometimes sounds strange to many (SC 464, 248250/St. Hellenistic religion, any of the various systems of beliefs and practices of eastern Mediterranean peoples from 300 bc to ad 300. In Fight Against ISIS, a Lose-Lose Scenario Poses Challenge for West. 70 For Origen, as for other early Christian authors, the attractiveness of pre-existence was its ability to function as a theodicy. Although Judaism and early Christianity were affected by the surrounding culture in certain ways, they diligently guarded their religious beliefs and practices from Hellenistic pagan influences, even to the point of martyrdom. Gen. 12.4; Fr. Note as well the perspective by one of Origen's most important modern biographers, Eugne de Faye, in his Origen and His Work (trans. 2; Cels. Justin Martyr was a key figure during this period who helped reconcile Hellenism with Christian teachings. 48 Danilou, Origen, 209. Early Christianity engaged Hellenistic culture generally, and more specifically Greek philosophy, from the end of the first century on. Philo was an example of the intense Hellenization of Judaism. Robin Waterfield; Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2002). (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Henry Chadwick; Cambridge, U.K.: Cambridge University Press, 1953] 21617)allusion to Phaedr. So too Bostock: It must be recognized however that the Platonic or Pythagorean doctrine of pre-existence was not antagonistic to Jewish belief and that the difference between them was one of emphasis and viewpoint rather than of fundamental philosophy (The Sources, 260). He expresses reserve about the value of philosophy, particular philosophical doctrines, or philosophers at Hom. Gen. 1.13; Comm. 60 Princ. The reasons for this persecution are uncertain but have been ascribed, among other things, to the influence of Galerius, a fanatic follower of the traditional Roman religion; Diocletians own devotion to traditional religion and his desire to use Roman religion to restore complete unity in the empire; and the fear of an alienation of rebellious armies from emperor worship. F. Rothwell; London: George Allen & Unwin, 1926) 92; see also 94, as well as his Origne: sa vie, son oeuvre, sa pense (3 vols. 86 Princ. Christologische Forschungen und Perspektiven, Tendenzen und Brennpunkte der neueren Problematik um die Hellenisierung des Christentums, Verlag der Bayerischen Akademie der Wissenschaften, Die Hellenisierung des Christentums im Urteil Adolf von Harnacks, The Influence of Greek Ideas on Christianity, The Suffering of the Impassible God: the Dialectics of Patristic Thought, Cambridge History of Later Greek and Early Medieval Philosophy, Origen and Scripture: The Contours of the Exegetical Life, La notion d'hrsie dans la littrature grecque, IIeIIIe sicles, Iamblichus and the Theory of the Vehicle of the Soul, Become Like the Angels: Origen's Doctrine of the Soul, L'apport d'Origne pour la connaissance de la philosophie grecque, Origen, Patristic Philosophy, and Christian Platonism: Re-Thinking the Christianisation of Hellenism, When Souls Had Wings: Pre-Mortal Existence in Western Thought, Perception, Sensibility, and Moral Motivation in Augustine: A Stoic-Platonic Synthesis, Der ursprngliche Sinn der Dogmatik des Origenes, Philosophy and Theology in the Middle Ages, The Preexistence of the Soul in Medieval Thought, El problema del mal en Orgenes: importancia y significado teolgico del tiempo en la argumentacin sobre el mal del, L'origine du mal selon Origne et dans ses sources, Journey Back to God: Origen on the Problem of Evil, Rethinking Gnosticism: An Argument for Dismantling a Dubious Category, Des Origenes Lehre vom Urstand des Menschen, Thologie de l'image de dieu chez Origne, Alcune osservazioni sull interpretazione Origeniana di Genesi 2,7 e 3,21, Origen, Greek Philosophy, and the Birth of the Trinitarian Meaning of, On the Confusion of Tongues and Origen's Allegory of the Dispersion of Nations, Origen's Platonism. 61 There is a substantial debate in the literature about whether rational souls were originally discarnate or were always associated with some sort of body. 2.6.4 [GK 364, 143.2427]). HVnH+ venY$LAn--8$5)Kb-{U`+?"J1lvy)JwM{UQT=&U{Q5"0Vv/C/4"reU]Y\47k2c Erskine, Andrew; Blackwell Companions to the Ancient World; Oxford: Blackwell, 2003) 26479Google Scholar; Drobner, Hubertus R., Christian Philosophy, in The Oxford Handbook of Early Christian Studies (ed. Martyr was an early apologist, explaining Christianity to this new Greek flock within their own system of philosophy. Religion from the death of Alexander to the reformation of Augustus: 32327, Religion from the Augustan reformation to the death of Marcus Aurelius: 27,, ReligionFacts - Hellenic Reconstructionism. 2; Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1901). Taylor Echolls is an award-winning writer whose expertise includes health, environmental and LGBT journalism. eccl. Much of this activity would have centered in Alexandria, the capital of Egypt, but there was similar activity going on in Palestine, and some of these literary products that survive in some cases only in fragments, were probably written in Palestine, by Jews who were adopting these Hellenistic literary modes. posit that the soul is always in a body (as Eratosthenes, Ptolemy the Platonist, and others do) and make it pass from subtler bodies into dense bodies (John F. Finamore and John M. Dillon, Iamblichus De Anima: Text, Translation, and Commentary [Philosophia antiqua 92; Boston: Brill, 2002], 55). Its membership was drawn from the ethnic group for whom the deity was indigenous, and the group tended to continue to speak the native language. Princ. 1.1.46; Hom. 1.3.1; Ep. To regain divine protection, the emperors introduced the systematic persecution of Christians throughout the empire. 3:1011 (= Pamphilus, Apol. And so, much of what we see in the culture of these cities, like Caesarea Maritima, is a kind of Greek city structure with a Roman political organization, playing off between the different elements of Roman and Greek city life. During the 3rd century, economic collapse, political chaos, military revolt, and barbarian invasion nearly destroyed the empire. : Harvard University Press, 1999] 76). For more on the distinction between the church's teaching and the scholar's research, see esp., Kettler, Franz Heinrich, Der ursprngliche Sinn der Dogmatik des Origenes (Beihefte zur Zeitschrift fr die neutestamentliche Wissenschaft und die Kunde der lteren Kirche 31; Berlin: Alfred Tpelmann, 1966)Google Scholar. See as well Edwards, Mark, Origen's Platonism. You may be asking whether it is necessary to consider as heretics those who hold various opinions on these matters, or who investigate them in various ways. Lastly (5) Edwards claims that when Origen says newly-created human souls or minds are immaterial or incorporeal, he does not mean to imply that they ever existed without a bodymind refers to the mind proper as well as some sort of body (Origen against Plato, 9497). Some of the main themes that Jesus taught, which Christians later embraced, include: Love God. On this series of fifteen anathemas, and their relationship to the council, see Price, Acts of Constantinople, 2:270286. The Hellenistic world is that world that was created after the conquests of the near east by Alexander the Great at the end of the fourth century B.C. hb```a``Rf`f`r,@br2a?u,YWw DE@h7E30xTTT4y"@ 9% WGBH educational foundation. Thomas P. Scheck; FC 120; Washington, D.C.: Catholic University of America Press, 2010] 11011).Pamphilus also makes Origen's view his own (Apol. Moreover, in many of these passages Origen speaks of a contrast between a discarnate and incarnate existence, and this distinction seems to lose its force if discarnate does not really mean discarnate (e.g., Princ. Luc. Harvey, Susan Ashbrook and Hunter, David G.; Oxford Handbooks; Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2008) 67290Google Scholar; Markschies, Christoph, Does it Make Sense to Speak of a Hellenization of Christianity in Antiquity? Church History and Religious Culture 92 (2012) 3334CrossRefGoogle Scholar. For the first time, Rome was conscious that Christians were distinct from Jews. For more on this theme, see Scott, D., Recollection and Experience: Plato's Theory of Learning and Its Successors (Cambridge, U.K.: Cambridge University Press, 1995)CrossRefGoogle Scholar. The Stoics (for whom the soul of the embryo derived from the souls of both parents) also accepted the theory of simultaneous origins, and apparently so too did some Platonists. Cartwright, Sophie Hom. *A2$ [a5i8Q#a~ba>o&1Mq3~R728{w1.n;p!JMQcF/ )E View all Google Scholar citations 246bc. The New Testament and other parts of the Bible are considered Hellenistic in form, and much of Christian art throughout the centuries has been based on a Greek artistic and sculptural sensibility. 1.32 (SC 132 164.3132) he refers by name to Pythagoras, Plato and Empedocles whom he is following when he proposes the pre-existence of Jesus's soul. For many Jews, it seemed not to be a problem at all. They wished only to reject all polytheistic myth and cult and all metaphysical and ethical doctrines irreconcilable with Christian belief (e.g., Stoic materialism and Platonic doctrines of the transmigration of souls and the eternity of the world). Note as well the claim that in the doctrine of the faith of the early church there resided the philosophic spirit of the Greeks (ibid., 45). There were varying clashes between the two ideals Hellenism and Christianity which were often deemed 'incompatible'. The impact of Christianity following its legitimisation as the official state religion of Rome under Constantine in the 4th century contributed key impacts for the empire and its Hellenistic character. 5 See Harnack's distinction between Jewish and Hellenistic views of pre-existence and Origen's illustration of the latter variety (History of Dogma, 1:31831). Jo. 0 uses cookies to personalize content, tailor ads and improve the user experience. The nature of God was another tricky bridge between two schools of thought for Hellenistic Christianity to overcome. During the second century and beyond there's a continuing engagement over a variety of issues. Because among Greek philosophers there was a growing appreciation for the unity of the divine and for the notion that there may be a single simple divine principle underlying all things. That became the lingua franca of all of these subject peoples. See as well, Pamphilus, Apol. Le Boulluec, Alain, La notion d'hrsie dans la littrature grecque, IIeIIIe sicles (2 vols. 139 0 obj <>/Filter/FlateDecode/ID[]/Index[126 23]/Info 125 0 R/Length 72/Prev 639192/Root 127 0 R/Size 149/Type/XRef/W[1 2 1]>>stream Hft; Gtersloh, Germany: C. Berteslmann, 1950) 92185. On Stoic definitions, see esp. 69 Princ. 5.62 for Origen's open acknowledgment that he read philosophical texts. 85 Note esp. 3.9 (432a) and Philo, Leg. 2.9.5 (GK 410, 169.1213) and 2.9.6 (GK 412, 170.14) where accident and chance do not explain how this universe is organized. The ambivalence of official policy is perhaps best revealed in the exchange between Pliny the Younger, governor of Bithynia, and the emperor Trajan in 111. 1.8.4 (end); 2.8.4; 2.9.2; 2.9.6; 3.4.5; Comm. Cant. One of the reasons used to justify this reading is that Origen says several times in Princ. 1.7.2; 1.7.5; 2.9.7). berlegungen zur Grenzziehung zwischen Platonismus und Christentum, TRu36 [1971] 285302). Taylor Echolls - Updated September 29, 2017, Copyright 2023 Leaf Group Ltd. / Leaf Group Education, Explore state by state cost analysis of US colleges in an interactive article, PBS Frontline: From Jesus to Christ - Hellenistic Culture, BBC Religions: The Basics of Christian History.

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