Original Research

Polarity: The theology of anti-Judaism in Ephrem the Syrian’s hymns on Easter

P. J. Botha
HTS Teologiese Studies / Theological Studies | Vol 46, No 1/2 | a2294 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/hts.v46i1/2.2294 | © 1990 P. J. Botha | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 08 January 1990 | Published: 08 January 1990

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P. J. Botha, University of Pretoria, South Africa

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In this paper, the polarity Jews :: Christians in the hymns on Easter of the fourth-century Syrian theologian Ephrem is investigated. This polarity is found to be polemical against the Jews. But since polarity is a constant feature in the work of Ephrem which serves to communicate his theological frame of mind, the question is asked whether anti-Judaism does not also serve to convey theological ideas. An attempt is made to demonstrate that anti-Judaism indeed had a theological function for Ephrem: Anti-Judaism seems to have been an aspect of Christian self-definition. It was also a way of expressing the concepts of theological balance and reciprocity.


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