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Sed de quo peccato? Augustine’s exegesis of Rom. 8:3c in sermo 152, 9-11

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Abstract Augustine explored four exegetical solutions to reconcile Christ’s sinlessness with the expression de peccato in Rom. 8:3c (de peccato damnauit peccatum in carne): de peccato as referring to (1) Christ’s death, (2) Christ’s mortal body, (3) the sin of Judas and the Jews, which caused Christ’s death, and (4) Christ’s sacrifice for man’s sin. Augustine’s elaborate treatment of the fourth interpretation in s. 152, 9-11 is the main focus of this article. In light of other works from the same period (417/418), these paragraphs can be read as implicitly answering Pelagian criticism of Augustine’s Christology.


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