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"Chrestus" <> Christ

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  • Ian Hutchesson
    Dear Jon, Chrestos is used several times in the NT, though never suggesting a title or a name. I don t have access the cited texts to see exactly what is said,
    Message 1 of 2 , Feb 23, 1999
      Dear Jon,

      Chrestos is used several times in the NT, though never suggesting a title
      or a name.

      I don't have access the cited texts to see exactly what is said, but I
      notice again that there is no support from the NT and the first citation
      comes from the middle of the second century.

      The Maas passage may have been alright in 1913.


      Ian


      At 07.23 23/02/99 -0800, Jon Peter wrote:
      >Excerpt from A.J. Maas' article 'Origin of the Name Jesus Christ' (Catholic
      >Encyclopedia 1913)
      >
      >"....Greeks and Romans understood little or nothing about the import of the
      >word anointed; to them it did not convey any sacred conception. Hence they
      >substituted Chrestus, or "excellent", for Christians or "anointed", and
      >Chrestians instead of "Christians." There may be an allusion to this
      >practice in I Pet., ii, 3; hoti chrestos ho kyrios, which is rendered "that
      >the Lord is sweet." Justin Martyr (Apol., I, 4), Clement of Alexandria
      >(Strom., II, iv, 18), Tertullian (Adv. Gentes, II), and Lactantius (Int.
      >Div., IV, vii, 5), as well as St. Jerome (In Gal., V, 22), are acquainted
      >with the pagan substitution of Chrestes for Christus, and are careful to
      >explain the new term in a favourable sense. The pagans made little or no
      >effort to learn anything accurate about Christ and the Christians..."
      >
      >Regards,
      >
      >Jon
      >
      >
      >
    • Ian Hutchesson
      Jon, All you re doing is putting off your problems. ... If you are referring to Acts 26.28, you d better forget it. First, the text uses Christian , which has
      Message 2 of 2 , Mar 1, 1999
        Jon,

        All you're doing is putting off your problems.

        At 17.04 28/02/99 -0800, Jon Peter wrote:
        >Ian wrote:
        >
        >> OK Jon, all ya gotta do is gettit to have significance 160 years earlier!
        >
        >Ian, I did so in my post last Tues. on Agrippa, and again on Fri. or so,
        >titled "Chrestus=Christ" (Earl). You replied to neither. Did you see them?

        If you are referring to Acts 26.28, you'd better forget it. First, the text
        uses "Christian", which has nothing necessarily to do with Chrestos.
        Second, you haven't dated the text, or at least this part of the text, so
        as to introduce its usage here.

        You are wanting to justify the equality of Chrestus = Christ from a text
        that doesn't use Chrestos. I don't understand what you have in your mind
        here. It doesn't make sense to me.

        >The essential point is that "Chrestus" as a corruption of Christos is well
        >attested. ("Chrestians"=Christian counts as part of the same corruption of
        >course). This is what Latins called the Church and its leader.

        This has still not been established. Stop bs-ing. All you've got is a
        connection after the middle of the second century for "good" people.
        Tertullian doesn't give you Chrestus = Christ.

        >Weeks ago we began all this with Suetonius' "Chrestus." I pointed out that
        >the absence of any qualifier to this from Sue., such as saying "this is
        >Chrestus, the centurion from wherever" argues in favor of interpreting this
        >as a reference to Christ. As you know, any single-name or otherwise
        >unqualified reference to a person in ancient history accts is extremely
        >rare. To insert a name without some further identifier wouldn't make sense
        >stylistically. On the contrary, the absence of some identifier would require
        >an explanation.
        >
        >You said you could produce other "Chrestus" references, but have not done
        >so.

        What I said was that I could with some effort produce an example of
        Chrestus as a common name. I haven't done so yet, but will this secondary
        source do for the moment? J.Stevenson, "A New Eusebius", SPCK, 1957:
        "'Chrestus' was quite common as a personal name." (p2) Another indicator
        I've found in secondary sources is that in 222 the prefect Ulpian had a
        colleagues called Chrestus.

        >And good luck finding a "Chrestus" other than Christ, who makes sense as a
        >troublemaker among Jews in Rome a decade after the crucifixion.

        You haven't got the sources to talk about Christ in such a context.

        >As I've said, Suetonius could have corrected this,

        Suetonius was talking about Chrestus, whatever you think.

        >and surely would have, to
        >avoid readers confusing this with Jesus Christ.
        >
        >I also noted that St Peter was in Claudian Rome preaching "Chrestus" at
        >precisely this time.

        Oh now, now. You go for the Domine Quo Vadis????

        >In a dozen years the persecution under Nero began, and
        >when it did, "Chrestus" became established in the Latin lexicon as the name
        >for you-know-who. Likewise "Chrestians" were his followers.

        Hey, look at the sources for that persecution. More late stuff as well.

        >Is my case for "Chrestus" absolutely certain? Of course not. But, given
        >Tacitus' repetition of the term only a generation later,

        Haven't we decided, Jon, that the Tacitus reference was "Christus"? That
        gives you no help.

        >and Agrippa's
        >"Christians" in this period, my case deserves to be called "likely" by any
        >reasonable standards.

        Sorry, but "rubbish". You have well over 100 years between your reasonable
        example of Christian/Chrestian connection.


        Ian
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