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Introduction to Part One

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Chapter Summary

This introduction of the first part of the book discusses the presence of the enigmatic figure of the Heavenly Anthopos in the earliest paschal materials (specifically in the works of Melito, Pseudo-Hippolytus, Origen, and Methodius). It tries to find the roots of this figure in Second Temple traditions and other Hellenistic contexts. The part one shows that the Heavenly Anthropos figure in itself is very diverse, and implies a large spectrum of ontological statuses and functions, the phrase denoting a wide variety of conceptions from a Platonic paradigm to quasi-angelic and quasi-divine characters. At the end of this investigation, one may conclude that the Paschal Anthropos reflects a special Heavenly Anthropos trend, namely, one rooted in the Pauline texts. Paschal writings, therefore, echo the Pauline construction of this concept, preserving the ontological status and soteriological functions which Paul associates with this title. This is also the case with the title Son of Man.

Keywords: heavenly Anthropos; Paschal writings; Pauline texts; Second Temple traditions

10.1163/9789004251700_003
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