Ambrosiaster's Political Theology (Oxford Early Christian by Sophie Lunn-Rockliffe

By Sophie Lunn-Rockliffe

The works of Ambrosiaster, a Christian writing in Rome within the overdue fourth century, have been influential on his close to contemporaries and during the heart a while. within the first 1/2 her learn, Sophie Lunn-Rockliffe addresses the matter of the author's mysterious id (which students have wondered over for hundreds of years) and locations him in a huge old and highbrow context. within the moment part she addresses Ambrosiaster's political theology, an concept which has been explored in different overdue Roman Christian writers yet which hasn't ever been addressed in his works. She appears at how Ambrosiaster's attitudes to social and political order have been shaped at the foundation of theological innovations and the translation of scripture, and exhibits that he espoused a inflexible hierarchical and monarchical association within the church, society, and the Roman empire. He additionally traced shut connections among the satan, characterised as a insurgent opposed to God, and the earthly tyrants and usurpers who his example.

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Although the evidence for Ambrosiaster being a convert from Judaism is inconclusive, it is just possible that Jerome was referring to Ambrosiaster here. 386, and Ambrosiaster’s Quaestiones are broadly datable to the mid-370s to 380s. 55 Was Damasus the original questioner who inspired Ambrosiaster’s answers, or had he 50 Ambrosiaster, Q. 127. 17: ‘Sed quis tu es, qui nuptias prohibes? forte Marcion, quia corpus non a deo fabricatum putas, sed a diabolo . ’ 51 See Jerome, Letter, 22. ’ See also Hunter, ‘On the sin of Adam and Eve’, 298.

Why did Ambrosiaster’s works circulate anonymously, or ascribed incorrectly, so early? After all, the eYcacy of a Christian text was partly dependent on the orthodoxy and holiness of its author; if the author of a text was unknown, there may have been scepticism about the value of the text itself. Jerome, in his De Viris Illustribus, a catalogue of ecclesiastical writers, weeded out apparently pseudonymous texts 60 See A. J. Smith, ‘The Latin sources of the Commentary of Pelagius on the Epistle of St Paul to the Romans’, JTS 19 (1918), 162–230; Souter, Earliest Latin Commentaries; and Pelagius, Commentary on St Paul’s Epistle to the Romans (trans.

3: ‘cuius rei traditio et in sinagoga mansit et nunc in ecclesia celebratur . , Q. 20. , Q. 108. 5. 39 Lydia Speller, ‘Ambrosiaster and the Jews’, StP 17 (1982), 72. g. J. N. D. Kelly, Jerome (London, 1975), 84, on Jerome’s interest in Judaism and Jewish writings. 41 Ambrosiaster, Q. 44. , Comm. Gal. argumentum. 42 On John Chrysostom and the Jews, see J. N. D. Kelly, Golden Mouth: The Story of John Chrysostom, Ascetic, Preacher, Bishop (London, 1995), 62–6. ’46 The single piece of evidence for Ambrosiaster having converted to Christianity from paganism has been located in the opening words of this passage from his Quaestio 114, ‘Against the pagans’: When we lived in the error in which the pagans now persist, we were attracted not by signs of power, but by bare words which they call sacred.

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