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Document Details :

Title: Athanasius and the Book of Wisdom
Author(s): LEEMANS, J.
Journal: Ephemerides Theologicae Lovanienses
Volume: 73    Issue: 4   Date: Dec. 1997   
Pages: 349-368
DOI: 10.2143/ETL.73.4.504830

Abstract :
This article discusses Athanasius' borrowings from the Book of Wisdom. There are three reasons why we choose this book. First of all there is the fact that so far no research has been done into Athanasius' use of Wisdom Literature. Secondly the Book of Wisdom gradually developed during the patristic period into an important theological source. Some passages played a prominent role in the works of the Alexandrian authors before Athanasius. By the fourth century the book, despite the existing doubts on its canonicity, had become a locus theologicusof considerable importance. The book increased in importance in the theology of authors such as Gregory of Nyssa and Augustine. As examples of much used proof texts can be mentioned the following: Wisd 1,7 for the development of a theology of the Holy Spirit; Wisd 2,23-24 about immortality and Wisd 7,25-26 contributed immensely to the reflection about the relationship between the Father and the Son. An overview of Athanasius' use of Wisdom may contribute to the assessment of his place in this development. A final, more practical reason was that there are relatively few clear-cut cases where Athanasius uses Wisdom, which makes it possible to present them into some detail.

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