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By Peter W. Jones

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Additional resources for The Concept of Community in Tertullian's Writings. In the Light of Contemporary Legal, Philosophical, and Literary Influences

Sample text

Which is synony mous with the chris tian revel ation . 'Trut h, which is l of expre ssing it. way rite favou a is es' charg aIl rs answe , de si our on ition of Tertu llian 's De Testim onio Anima e is perha ps the clear est expos conce pt of the relati onsh ip of truth to the comm unity. Truth is seen iled human soule to be in natur e, it exist s parti cular ly in the unspo y and affec tation of Yet this truth is damag ed and obscu red by the vanit sophe rs. the pagan world , and parti cular ly of the pagan philo Only the t and the Scrip tures chris tians can fully appre ciate truth throu gh Chris chris tians resul ts in the" comm unity.

Chris tians a10ne , havin g free1 y con- fesse d, are then tortu red to extra ct a denia 1! { cutio ns at this time 1. 148 . the provi nces (cf. Barne s, Tertu 11ian , Oxfor d 1970) 2. 18. 1ff. 1 27 y estab lishe d In Roman Law, the system or trial by jury never real1 1 The only altern ative was a system that itse1 r, even in the capit al. 2 tio extra ordin aria. 1ater came to be ca1le d cogni tio extra ordine m or cogni to the magi strate This system in pract ice lert almos t total discr etion cou1d punis h any (in Carth age usua1 ly the proco nsul) .

Every popular mis concept ion regarding christians is reviewed, and each one is proved to be ralse. Once these presuppositions are seen to be untenable, th en Tertullian turns his attention to the law itselr, stating that it no longer has any relation to the situation, and must be considered an unjust law. Rome must permit the christians to worship the true God in the same way that she permits others to worship ralse ones. 3 1. Ad Nationes is a work written in much the same style as the earlier apologists such as Justin.

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