By D. Joslyn-Siemiatkoski
This e-book examines texts and fabrics, starting from the jap Mediterranean to northwestern Europe, on the topic of the Maccabean martyrs. Joslyn-Siemiatkoski demonstrates that Christian thinkers developed thoughts of the Maccabean martyrs that at the same time appropriated Jewish traditions and obscured the Jewish origins of Christianity.
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Extra info for Christian Memories of the Maccabean Martyrs
Ambrose addressed catechumens desiring baptism who were designated as competentes. This group stood in distinction to aspirantes who received instruction solely by listening to Bible readings and sermons. The competentes in Milan received twice daily instruction from Ambrose during Lent drawn from the lives of the patriarchs in Genesis. From the content of these sermons, Marcia Colish has argued that 36 Christian Memories of the Maccabean Martyrs these competentes were well-educated adults with the means to engage in intensive catechetical instruction.
56 Turning to the example of the man who was struck dead while gathering sticks on the Sabbath, Chrysostom contrasted the Law as punishment of sin and the Spirit given in Christ as life giving. 57 Drawing his sermon to its conclusion, Chrysostom declared he had proved Christ’s status as the true Lawgiver spoken of in prophets like Jeremiah. Thus the Maccabean martyrs, because they died for the Law, also died for Christ the Lawgiver. In the course of On Eleazar, the Maccabean martyrs have become hybrids, simultaneously Jewish in body and Christian in spirit.
Ambrose created his own form of resistance culture in his encouragement to cultivate virtues that would enable his community to resist both physical and political temptation to side with the imperially favored Arians. Ambrose did not advocate for armed rebellion but for a spiritual resistance that would lead to growth in virtue and the formation of a Catholic Christian identity. Although Ambrose’s rhetoric was directed at an Arian emperor, Ambrose himself was not opposed to the alliance of Christianity with the Roman Empire.