By Christine Shepardson
The politically embroiled and sharply divided Council of Nicaea (325) supplied a turbulent starting to Christianity's fight for self-definition within the political enviornment. Questions of final fact apart, those that may perhaps legally declare the name of Christian orthodoxy have been these whose teachings had the backing of the emperor's felony and armed forces authority. regardless of the concrete judgements of 325 and the ecumenical council's try to create an imperial orthodoxy, the many years that witnessed ongoing battles among these Christians who supported the council's end result and people who didn't. This ebook investigates the advanced anti-Jewish and anti-Judaizing rhetoric of Ephrem, a fourth-century poet, deacon, and theologian from jap Roman Syria whose Syriac-language writings stay strange and linguistically inaccessible to centuries of students who examine the well known Greek and Latin writings of his contemporaries. A severe interpreting of Ephrem's quite a few poetic writings demonstrates that his sharp anti-Jewish and anti-Judaizing language helped to solidify a pro-Nicene definition of Christian orthodoxy, removing from that neighborhood within the very act of defining it his so-called Judaizing and Arian Christian rivals, either one of whom he accused of being extra like Jews than Christians. via conscientiously crafted rhetoric, Ephrem developed for his viewers new social and theological parameters that reshaped the non secular panorama of his neighborhood. This booklet exhibits that the anti-Jewish polemic of Ephrem's hymns represents his calculated efforts to depart his Syrian congregation without doable substitute yet to comply to the Council of Nicaea, his personal version for Christian orthodoxy.Comparing Ephrem's texts with the modern Greek writings of Athanasius, the well known bishop of Alexandria, Christine Shepardson unearths the numerous position that anti-Jewish rhetoric performed extra generally during this severe fourth-century theological clash, and demonstrates that long-ignored Syriac-speaking Christians reminiscent of Ephrem participated absolutely within the fierce fight to outline Christian orthodoxy for the Roman Empire.
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Additional resources for Anti-Judaism and Christian Orthodoxy: Ephrem's Hymns in Fourth-century Syria (Patristic Monograph Series 20)
Scholars Press, 1981). 61. See, for example, Rabbula, Canons 55, in which he forbids those in his audience to cas trate themselves, a practice that was important in the Syrian cult of Atargatis. Legend also claims that Rabbula aggressively attacked pagan temples (see G. G. Blum, Rabbula von Edessa: Der Christ, der Bischof, der Theologe, CSCO, Sub. 34 [Louvain, 1969], 30-32; R. Doran, Stewards of the Poor: The Man of God, Rabbula, and Hiba in Fifth-Century Edessa, Cistercian Studies 208 [Kala mazoo: Cistercian Publications, 2006]; and the Life of Rabbula, Acta Martyrum et Sanctorum, vol.
Segal, "The Jews of North Mesopotamia," in Sepher Segal, eds. J. M. Grintz and J. Liver (Jerusalem: Kiryat Sepher, 1964), 40; Segal, Edessa, 42; Han J. W. Drijvers, "Jews and Christians at Edessa," JJS 36, no. 1 (1985): 90. These inscriptions, three in Hebrew and one in Greek and a separate menorah, are located in Kirk Magara, "the Forty Caves," one of several ancient burial sites around Edessa. This evidence corroborates ear lier assumptions about Judaism in Edessa during the time of early Christianity, assumptions that had largely been based on later Syriac literature such as the Teaching of Addai.
These claims can be seen as early as Paul's writings. See, for example, Rom 9-11, in which he claims that Gentiles who follow Christ have been grafted onto the tree of Israel. ) There is a wealth of scholarship on this topic. See, for example, Karl Ludwig Schmidt, Die Judenfrage im Lichte der Kapitel 9-11 des Römerbriefes (Zürich: Evangelical Press, 1947); Johannes Munck, Christus und Israel: Eine auslegung von Köm. 9-11 (Aarhus: University Press, 1956); Christian Müller, Gottes Gerechtigkeit und Gottes Volk: Eine Untersuchung zu Römer 9-11 (Görtingen: Vandenhoeck& Rupre cht, 1964); Paul E.