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Τελετη In Jewish And Christian Authors

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Chapter Summary

The Greek and Jewish realm of ideas together form the spiritual foundation from which nascent Christianity emerged. Of Greek culture, it is the mystery cults in particular that have influenced Christianity, at least outwardly. It is not our intention here to assess to what extent the similarity in terminology covers an adoption of ideas. This chapter attempts to examine whether, and to what extent, the meaning of τελετή evolves in the Christian authors. Clement of Alexandria sharply condemns the Greek mysteries and what took place at them. On briefly examining the use of τελετή in Jewish and Christian authors, it appears that the Septuagint uses the term to refer to Canaanite cult customs, especially temple prostitution. The Apocrypha, written in Hellenistic and later times, often have the hendiadys τελεταí χαíμυστήρια, to indicate Greek mystery rites.

Keywords: τελετή; Christian authors; Clement of Alexandria; Jewish realm



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