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22760Re: Social Healing, Movement Constitution and Titling

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  • RSBrenchley@aol.com
    Aug 3, 2008
      In a message dated 02/08/2008 11:24:42 GMT Daylight Time,
      crosstalk2@yahoogroups.com writes:

      <<And I want to end
      this note by saying that I really think all the other titles applied
      to Jesus make best sense when understood in relationship to this
      social formation. And so, for instance, when Caesar communicated on
      coins and temples across the empire was hailed as "son of God,"
      "Divine," "Savior," "establisher of the Heavenly Pax," and patron to
      all the temples (including Aesclepius')all the temples (including
      surprising at all that a social praxis that became an enduring social
      movement dug into the Scriptural heritage to counter those Roman
      social order affirmations with counter affirmations of their own. >>

      I like most of what you say, but you're generalising a bit here. the
      inscription DIVI F(ilius), 'son of a god' was used on a few coin issues by Augustus
      only. He was the adopted son of Julius Caesar, and used the relationship for
      political purposes as he was establishing himself, even taking the name
      'Julius Caesar' at one point. The title refers to his relationship to the
      divinised Caesar, not to God himself.

      Emperors the Senate approved of were divinised after their deaths, hence
      Vespasian's alleged last words, 'I think I'm becoming a god.' If Seneca's
      'Apocolocyntosis Divi Clavdii' is anything to go by, deification was not highly
      regarded by the Romans, at least this early. Divine kingship was, of course,
      long established in the eastern Mediterranean, and under the Romans, city
      coins regularly boasted of their neocorates (temples of the imperial cult). In
      the 280's, Aurelian, who seems to have had a good relationship with the
      church, called himself DEO ET DOMINO on a few of his coins, but it's a rare
      inscription only found from one or two eastern mints. I think you need to look more
      at the specific traditions of the eastern Mediterranean, or the Jews
      themselves, rather than the Roman empire as a whole.


      Robert Brenchley

      Birmingham UK

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