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The abuse and misuse of Josephus in Eusebius’ ecclesiastical history, books 2 and 3

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Chapter Summary

The history of Christianity in the western world seems to have been a history of the abuse and misuse of the Bible. Likewise, the reception history of Josephus in the western world seems to have been a history of the abuse and misuse of Josephus. This is at least true of Eusebius of the fourth century. In his Ecclesiastical History, Eusebius abused and misused Josephus to express his anti-Jewish message, which seems to have paved a way for Christian anti-Judaism in subsequent generations. The gist of Eusebius’s anti-Jewish message in his Ecclesiastical History is as follows: (1) Jews put the Saviour on the cross; (2) This is the crime against Christ; (3) The Jewish people, to whom the above-mentioned Jews belong, must be accused as a race. This chapter discusses how Eusebius used Josephus in his Ecclesiastical History, Books 2 and 3.

Keywords: abuse and misuse; anti-Jewish message; Bible; Christ; Christianity; Ecclesiastical History; Eusebius; Josephus



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