ARGUMENTS FOR FAITH IN CLEMENT OF ALEXANDRIA BY ERIC OSBORN In the history of ideas, the defence of faith, which is offered by Cle- ment of Alexandria, ranks beside that of Paul who, in Romans 4, sought to prove the primacy of the faith of Abraham over the law of Moses. Paul was supported by the Letter to the Hebrews, which claimed that not only Abraham, but all the notables of Jewish scripture were persons of faith. Yet faith found its first principle and perfection in Jesus. For Clement, just as the law was a paidagogos to the Jews, so philosophy was a paidagogos to the Greeks to bring them to Christ. In the second century, both paidagogoi were unhappy at their compulsory retirement, especially since they were required to leave their books behind for use by their younger replacement. Justin made it clear that the scriptures now belonged to Christians; Tertullian warned all that the scriptures were Christian property. In philosophy, Justin and Clement used an identical formula to assert that whatever had been well said, belonged to Christians. Justin's logos spermatikos claimed Socrates and Heraclitus as Christians before Christ. Clement, in his Stromateis, claimed that the
Vigiliae Christianae – Brill
Published: Jan 1, 1994
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