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The Reception of the Truth at Baptism and the Church as Epistemological Principle in the Work of Irenaeus of Lyons

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image of Ecclesiology

This article explores the meaning of the statement made by Irenaeus of Lyons that the truth (i.e. the faith) is received at baptism. It is argued that what is meant here is the reception of true 'first principles' that allow the newly baptized to see the world fully as it is; the shape of these first principles is understood as integration into the church and its tradition. In this way, the integration of the newly baptized into a community of interpretation is the way in which s/he learns to see the world anew, namely from the perspective of the community of faith.


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