least part of these gatherings consists in "love-feasts". layout: "video", Christians were rather reluctant to be involved in worldly affairs. The idea of a God coming down to the earth is shameful. 84), and even that they have knowledge of God. At Christians make Christians do not proceed by means of reason; they rather repeat Christianity - Christianity - Apologetics: defending the faith: The First Letter of Peter tells its addressees that they must “always be prepared to make a defense (apologia) to anyone who calls you to account for the hope that is in you” (3:15). Note of the Ed. If they were, they would refuse to eat all What proof do we have of the resurrection? He has no idea of regarding Christianity from the inside, and of inquiring into the reason of its influence; he uses jest for argument, and interprets everything in a bad sense. Celsus suggests that he did so in a whimsical way, like Jupiter rejects those who are instructed, wise or prudent. In the first book of Celsus from which Origen took his extracts, a Jew, introduced by Celsus, addresses Jesus; in the second book, the Jew addresses his Jewish coreligionists who have embraced Christianity; and in the remaining six books Celsus speaks in his own person. 22). good". They don't speak in front of these teachers because "they do According to Origen, Celsus was an Epicurean. Couldn't he fix allegedly wrong things directly? there was 223-266 THE ATTACK OF CELSUS ON CHRISTIANITY. to them according to the laws, and pray to them that they may be Zürich, 1873). Christians, when in front of wise people, remain silent. there is no harm in offering to them), or they are demons. Image courtesy of Magnus Manske and Wikipedia. having a soul"). Info about Subscription Site. height: 400, So, the story is fabricated. Printable Version of Text plus translation and notes COMMON OBJECTIONS. and retain their ancestral customs; they do not seek to subvert and get Jesus the Son of God, and that he was sent only to the Jews. Celsus is looking at Christianity from a Jewish perspective and it's pretty clear that he does not have a high approval rating on Christianity. Celsus condems "those who, while holding the Christian views, 64). and men; by contrast, the Christians' God does not help his followers. $5 for trial, $30 a year for individuals ($15 students). know already all that was going on on earth? Though Christianity spread rapidly in the West during the first few centuries A.D., it first spread through much of the middle east and “Asia Minor” (modern-day Turkey), as well as to Ethiopia and other parts of North Africa. : Celsus was Christianity’s first great critic. new Twitch.Embed("twitch-embed", { However, a good God would not have created an evil which would “threaten to destroy his own offspring.”. Jesus, having learned some miraculous powers when he was in Egypts To him Christianity is an “exitiabilis superstitio”; he gives credence to every story against it on which he can lay his hands; he dwells with coarse jocularity on the Jewish tradition of Panthera and the Virgin Mary (i. Information on Celsus. themselves ridicolous when they say that the Spirit descended only on would be the purpose of such a descent on the part of God? We must be on our guard at once against disparaging it too much, and against thinking too highly of its ability. However, throughout the centuries, some Jewish People chose to believe in His Messiahship, and today, Jews are coming to … animal food (Celsus refers here to the vegetarianism of Pythagoras, Father, or was unable to aid himself. This was the standard pattern of many… Read More Here's a look at ten objections skeptics pose toward Christianity—and how to respond. Please feel free to answer as many or as few as you would like. In one of the most unpleasing passages of his work, he compares Jews and Christians to a set of worms or frogs squabbling in the mud, and saying, “God is, and we are next to Him, and it is for our sake that the whole world is made; and God will come and take us up to heaven, except those who are bad, whom He will burn with fire.”, The work of Origen against him is, as a whole, of much controversial merit and philosophical breadth. Fath. Notes on topics related [sometimes loosely] to my Bachelor of Divinity studies at the University of London prefer "sinners over others". But "it makes no difference whether the God who is over all In fact, idols are either nothing (so The following is an excerpt from Nixey’s chapter ‘Wisdom is Foolishness’: C elsus did not soften his attack either. email: dsalomoni at yahoo dot com (about me), Ignatius of Antioch and early persecutions. Christians are not able to explain "at least of what nature these 1. Initially, Celsus seems to have been overlooked by Christians but a century later Origen felt it was prudent to respond to the work in his Against Celsus (ca. He wrote a comprehensive attack on Christianity entitled The True Word (or the True Discourse (Λόγος Ἀληθής)), which today survives only in the work of the writer Origen called Contra Celsum.2 Many writers say that Celsus was an Epicurean, but He had strong faith in reason. Christians must choose: either they decide not to render service He challenges the evidence of Christianity, and asks, “Who saw the dove lighting on the head of Jesus after His baptism?” As to the Resurrection, he makes the remark which has been copied by Renan and others, that it was Mary Magdalene, “a fanatical woman,” who was the first witness of the resurrection, according to all the accounts (ii. New Haven & London: Yale: University Press, … But he had not any partiality for Judaism. In addition, they only one God, and they named it in different ways (the Highest, Adonai, }); (adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({}); Cassianus (11) Johannes, founder of Western Monachism. public feasts and idol offerings? They won't Celsus the Platonist (William Turner) Gerard Watson, "Celsus and the Philosophical Opposition to Christianity," Irish Theological Quarterly 58.3 (1992): 165-179. ORIGEN - THE OBJECTIONS OF CELSUS AGAINST CHRISTIANITY . The Virginal Conception of Jesus. "what are the three most common objections that you have against Christianity (eg., God, Jesus, or the Bible) and why"? sacrifice The Jewish objections to Christianity are numerable. either pretend that they do not, or deny them". The virginal birth of Jesus was invented. His work as a whole has been lost, but when the third century theologian Origen sought to answer Celsus' charges in a work appropriately called Against Celsus , he preserved most of Celsus' criticisms. Here are some of the objections that Celsus raised against Christianity in the late second century (c.180). Celsus and Democritus. What obstacle are these things to the knowledge of God? He makes a great point of the opposition between the morality of the Old and New Testaments, in respect of the earthly success which is the crowning happiness of the former, and so strongly reprobated by the latter. An A-Z of Unanswered Objections to Christianity: Q. Do not they rather lead and assist to the attainment of truth?” Nor had that similarity between the human and the animal frame, which the natural science of our own day insists upon, escaped his notice. customs In the list of objections to Christianity below, explain how you would respond to the claim/question. things case they are also God's creatures, and "we must believe in them, He begins with a dialogue between a Jew and a Christian, in which the Jew sets forth his objections to Christianity. The Jews observe a mode of worship derived from their fathers, "awaking this life". (iv. have children, and enjoy life and its sorrows: but in this case they "Do not examine, but believe!" Celsus (1). Christians engage in secret associations with each other. Renan, Marc-Aurèle; Pelagaud, Étude sur Celse (Lyons, 1828); Aubé, Histoire des Persécutions (Paris, 1878); Lightfoot, Apost. It would be hard, again, to cavil at his ideas of the Divine Nature; he speaks of men “burning with the love of it” (i. But especially valuable is Prof. Theodor Keim’s monograph (Celsus’s Wahres Wort. after resurrection by "a hysterical female" and by others "who either IT would be very interesting to know what impression was made upon the heathen by the apologists of Chris tianity from Justin Martyr to the unknown author of the "Epistle to Diognetus," but this satisfaction is denied to us, for a direct trace of their influence is nowhere to be found. 86). (Cf. The 2nd-century pagan philosopher Celsus is less dogmatic in his attacks on Christianity: the Christian miracles are insufficiently attested and most improbable, but, even if they were genuine, they could hardly offset the miracles of the pagan world—e.g., the healings of Asclepius. From such instances it is evident that Celsus wholly misapprehended the force of the doctrine that he was attacking. 30,000 sects. The date of Celsus’s treatise is fixed by Keim as a.d. 177 or 178. working as a servant, used them to proclaim himself a god. must "discharge the duties of life". Encyclopedic Dictionary of Bible and Theology. to events narrated in the gospels. avoid Celsus (1). Does fear belong to God?”. Jesus was no God because he received no assistance from the allucination due to some mistaken notion [...], or, which is more He dwells on the numerous sects of Christians, all of whom said, “Crede, si salvus fieri velis,” and asks how one is to judge between so many? The Annunciation by Fra Angelico. 28, sqq. They also teach children that, if they like, A hypocrite is an actor, a person who pretends to be something she isn't. Not so the Christians. "They cannot have it both ways: either they are a new sect with no relation to Judaism, or they are a cousin of the Jewish faith, in which case they are not entitled to take a pick-and-mix approach to its doctrines. Finally, he maintains that no revelation of the Supreme Being can be made; but that, if it could be made, it must be of universal and compelling efficacy; that, however, all that is possible is revelation by an angel or demon, and even that he denies to Judaism or Christianity. Celsus' books, along with those of Porphry and others, were condemned by order of Valentinian III and Theodosious in 448CE. Greek philosopher Celsus. Celsus urges Christians to "take office in the government of the Both Baur and Kelm rate Celsus too highly; but the general tendency of Christian writers has naturally been to underrate him. They may see Him as a knowledgeable teacher and a man who did good mitzvahs, but not the Messiah. What His logic is that if there is evil in the world, and the world is itself God’s creation, then God must have created evil. The objections of Celsus to the character of Christ being thus dismissed, and they are really unworthy even of the scanty space here bestowed upon them, it is plain that all the facts admitted by him are so much to be added to the scale of evidence. Baur says that “in acuteness, in dialectical aptitude, in many-sided cultivation, at once philosophic and general, Celsus stands behind no opponent of Christianity.” Admitting that this panegyric is not groundless, we must add, that in vital insight Celsus was deficient. If God is the God of all, and if by being God he does not need they should leave father and schoolmasters. (1 Peter 3:15) For to “What evil is it,” he asks, “to be learned and to have cultivated the intellect with the best pursuits, to be and to appear wise? The maintenance of social order depends on paying honours to God Christians, "the wisdom of this life is a bad thing, but foolishness is He complains vehemently of them as discouraging learning, wisdom, and thought; as rejecting the authority of reason; as being the patrons of sinners, whereas to the heathen mysteries only “the holy and virtuous” were invited. born out of an adulterous relation, because of which her mother was Such objections are historically misinformed. But, on the whole, there are few works of the ancient Fathers which can be read with more pleasure and profit. many and then send these many into the whole world? II. anything (therefore, he cannot be jealous), why do Christians teach to they get hold of children and "some stupid women", they say they should are totally corrupted". obey them. Christians are not really monotheists. Your responses are annonymous, so please do not worry whether you answer the question correctly on not. They are all found in Contra Celsus by Origen, as no original works by Celsus are extant. But questions far more interesting than personal ones are raised by his attack on Christianity, of which enough has been preserved by Origen in his contra Celsum to convey to us a very tolerable idea of its nature. the gods, and in this case they should not marry nor have children, and Christianity was actually born in Jerusalem (in modern-day Israel.) "its bodily organs". Much better kicked out of the house by the husband, a carpenter. channel: "iconday" Of the personal history of this, the first great polemical adversary of Christianity, we know nothing with certainty; and even Origen, from whom the whole of our knowledge of Celsus is derived, had received the work of Celsus, entitled ἀληθὴς λόγος, or the True Discourse, without any hint of the history or date of its author. likely, wanted to impress the others by telling this fantastic tale". He goes about the "Address of the Jew" in part 1 questioning everything that the Lord Jesus claims about Himself, then in part 2 admonishing those who have converted from Judaism to Christianity. Jesus was adopted by god at his baptism. Robert L. Wilken, The Christians as the Romans Saw Them. Subscription Version of Text With translation, more background info & notes. things are of which they speak, and whence they are derived". life, they should pay honor to "those beings who control the affairs of 55); and remarks on the disbelief invariably given to such accounts as those of the resurrection of Zamolxis, Pythagoras, Orpheus, Protesilaus, Hercules, and Theseus. Celsus wrote his work True Discourse (or, True Reason) as a polemic against the Christians in approximately 178 CE.Celsus divided the work into two sections, the one in which objections are put in the mouth of a Jewish interlocutor and the other in which Celsus speaks as the pagan philosopher that he is. Christians are hypocrites. ); he unearths a certain Diagramma, a figure symbolizing the world, and consisting of a circle called Leviathan enclosing ten other circles, apparently used in the rites of some sect more or less approximating to the Christians (vi. But Celsus was not a mere polemical assailant; he was a philosopher on his own account, and held in certain respects by no means unenlightened opinions. CELSUS (178ECE) Wrote"On the True Doctrine, known primarily from the polemical book, "Contra Celsum," written br Origen of Alexandria in response the Celsus's questions. There are cases, indeed, in which he shews himself more acute. More than a passing comment or a veiled allusion; it was a collection of objections contra Christianity. Christianity: It's not our fault your religion can not get its shit together. Celsus (1). He complains vehemently of them as discouraging learning, wisdom, and thought; as rejecting the authority of reason; as being the patrons of sinners, whereas to the heathen mysteries only "the holy and virtuous" were invited. accept to worship God alone. In reality they worship 8); he is intolerant of the association of it with anything that is mortal or perishable. Of the personal history of this, the first great polemical adversary of Christianity, we know nothing with certainty; and even Origen, from whom the whole of our knowledge of Celsus is derived, had received the work of Celsus, entitled ἀληθὴς λόγος, or the True Discourse, without any hint of the history or date of its author. This 11). Hence he deduces that ants “converse, have reason, notions of general truths, speech,” etc. The True Word has been lost to history, but its … Although the origins of Christianity are in Judaism, and even for a time Christianity abided under the banner of Judaism as a “sect” , the two are quite distinct and to the untrained observer the two “great religions” have little in common. width: "100%", Christianity makes a point of calling to the faith "ignorant, Origen, indeed, who to all appearance is a very fair antagonist, speaks of it with contempt. not pay any attention to their fathers and school-teachers but must ), Source: Dictionary of Christian Biography and Literature. country", and to help the king with all possible strength. unintelligent, uninstructed, or foolish persons"; on the other hand, it i. pp. Celsus’s charge touches on the so-called problem of evil. 16); and with which he accepts the stories of Linus and Musaeus, though afterwards he rejects those of Perseus and Amphion (i. But in this The herdsmen and shepherds that created Judaism decided that Christianity (and Judaism) is barbarous in origin. They also claim that their ancestral Yet, he has no suspicion of the distinction between the universally accepted teachings of the "great Church" of the Christians and the doctrines peculiar to Ophites, Marcionites , and other heretical sects . Origen does not deny the fact, but maintains that it is a proof of the importance of that on which they debated, and further that they all set forth Jesus alone as the means of salvation (vi. The first point which Celsus brings forward, in his desire to throw discredit upon Christianity, is, that the Christians entered into secret associations with each other contrary to law, saying, that "of associations some are public, and that these are in accordance with the laws; others, again, secret, and maintained in violation of the laws." etc). If they receive anything from If so, why coming down? Celsus was a Greek writer in the second century who criticized Christianity as a threat to the stable communities and worldview that the "pagan" religious and social system sought to uphold. Origen, indeed, like Celsus, is not free from the superstitions of his time; thus he defends the star whose appearance is told in the second chapter of St. Matthew by a reference to comets, which, he remarks, portend future events, such as wars and pestilences. Of the personal history of this, the first great polemical adversary of Christianity, we know nothing with certainty; and even Origen, from whom the whole of our knowledge of Celsus is derived, had received the work of Celsus, entitled ἀληθὴς λόγος, or the True Discourse, without any hint of the history or date of its author. F. C. Baur has written an elaborate critique on Celsus in his work on Christendom and the Christian Church in the First Three Centuries (Tübingen, 1853). Celsus took pains to make himself acquainted with the beliefs of his Christian contemporaries, and he is unquestionably conscious of his knowledge of Christianity. Jesus was seen 246 AD). Didn't God Celsus admits that Christianity and Judaism were different as they rejected core Jewish customs and laws on circumcision, diet, festivals and keeping the Sabbath. and, "Your faith will save you!". He treats Moses and the Jewish Scriptures with a contempt which amusingly contrasts with the uncritical reverence which he pays to the Galactophagi of Homer, the Druids, and the Getae, whom he terms “wise and ancient nations” (i. Apparently Jesus was a man/prophet inspired by god, Jesus was a man chosen by god. 513 ff. Celsus had written a critique of Christianity called The True Word, and Origen was asked to respond to his charges. from a lenghtened slumber"), why did he not send the Holy Spirit to He lived in the region of Adrian in the Second Century AD. "to an extravagant degree this man who appeared recently". The moral system of Christianity is nothing new. Trinity, no trinity. be called by the name of Zeus, which is current among the Greeks, or by He was not free from superstition; he believed in magic, and declared that serpents and eagles were more skilled in it than men (iv. therefore disappear soon from the face of the earth. The purpose is to prepare to be ready! The form of Celsus’s work, the ἀληθὴς λόγος, is well known. In reality Jesus was Instead Christians only refuse to eat "slain victims". Or they can marry, that, e.g., which is in use among the Indians or Egyptians". propitious". Celsus and the Jews. rid of "institutions established from the beginning in the various places". of Assuming that God decided to rescue humanity from evil (and Treating of the flight of Jesus into Egypt, and afterwards (as he alleges) before the betrayal, he asks, “Had God need to fly from His enemies? This first assault on Christianity was vicious, powerful and, like Gibbon, immensely readable. In general, there is no proof or witnesses Christians engage in secret associations with each other. Convent of San Marco, Florence, ca. are the Greeks and their dialectics. derive from the Jews, but "have revolted from the Jews". Posted on December 2, 2020 by vjtorley. Christians are not consistent in their respect of the soul and of Critics have challenged Christian beliefs and teachings as well as Christian actions, from the Crusades to modern terrorism. 1440-45. After these points Celsus quotes some objections against the doctrine of Jesus, made by a very few individuals who are considered Christians, not of the more intelligent, as he supposes, but of the more ignorant class, and asserts that "the following are the rules laid down by them. Dr. Kelm gathers together, and translates, the fragments of Celsus contained in Origen; and adds disquisitions of much interest, both on Celsus himself and on two of his contemporaries, Lucian of Samosata and Minucius Felix. Celsus (/ ˈ s ɛ l s ə s /; Hellenistic Greek: Κέλσος, Kélsos) was a 2nd-century Greek philosopher and opponent of early Christianity. who, according to Ovid, said that "animals share with us the privilege Celsus accuses the Christians of lawlessness, and of keeping wholly to themselves, and not caring for those outside. Early Renaissance fresco. But when The intellectual arguments against Christianity include the suppositions that it is a faith of violence, corruption, superstition, polytheism, bigotry, pontification, and sectarianism. As an opponent of Christianity, the chief characteristic of Celsus is a strong, narrow, intolerant common sense. not want to have anything to do with the silly and obtuse teachers that Many Jewish People hold great objections to Yeshua as Messiah. dreamt in a certain state of mind and through wishful thinking had a is why Christianity is so much widespread among illiterate persons. But the most remarkable portions of his attack are those directed against the general character of Christianity. Celsus accuses the Christians of lawlessness, and of keeping wholly to themselves, and not caring for those outside. 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