De persoon van Jezus in de godsdienstpolemiek van de vierde eeuw | Amsterdam University Press Journals Online
Volume 48, Issue 2
  • ISSN: 2542-6583
  • E-ISSN: 2590-3268



At the beginning of the fourth century, the debate between pagans and Christians centred round the question of whether Jesus had to be considered a ‘divine man’, like the famous Apollonius of Tyana, or a God in human shape. Because of his miracles, the pagans were prepared to accept that Jesus had been a ‘divine man’, but they strongly opposed the Christian view that by these miracles he had proved himself to be God. Moreover, they pointed out that certain aspects of Jesus’ behavior had not been in accordance with that of a true ‘divine man’. These views, expressed by Sossianus Hierocles and an anonymous philosopher, were answered by Eusebius, Lactantius and Macarius of Magnesia. They refused to see Jesus as a ‘divine man’ and, , pointed out that the prophets had predicted his incarnation sufferings long before they actually took place. For Macarius the question was no real issue anymore, in answering the pagan accusations he often attacks the Jews.


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