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Summary of Part Four

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Chapter Summary

Modern scholarship has unveiled the large anthropomorphic trend of the late Second Temple, early Christian, and early rabbinic milieus. In general, apocalyptic literature and the most part of the apocryphal and pseudepigraphic Jewish and Christian documents preserved the ordinary language of Scriptures in its main ontological and epistemological assumptions. In contradistinction, educated authors of Late Antiquity such as Philo, Josephus, the author of the Hermetic Corpus, and pre-Nicene Christian writers tried to find new hermeneutical alternatives, from allegorical interpretation to noetic transfer, to mystery language. One of the main theoretical debates of their time, if not the central one, concerned the distinction between the literal and allegorical or noetic readings of biblical theophanies. Origen and Methodius are two fascinating authors of a different nature. While Origen expounds in metaphorical ways about the anthropomorphic traits of the Logos, both of them consider that the Logos possesses a Divine Form.

Keywords: late Second Temple; mystery language; pre-Nicene Christian writers



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