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Asceticism and Anthropology in Irenaeus and Clement$
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John Behr

Print publication date: 2000

Print ISBN-13: 9780198270003

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198270003.001.0001

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Conclusion

Conclusion

Chapter:
(p.208) (p.209) Conclusion
Source:
Asceticism and Anthropology in Irenaeus and Clement
Author(s):

John Behr

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198270003.003.0008

The book defines two different theologies regarding the existence and nature of man. For Irenaeus, asceticism is man living life in the image of God. For Clement, man is in control of how he becomes godlike. Unique features of Irenaeus's theology include: the link between theology and anthropology, how the body is fashioned in the image of God, and man's dependence on God to attain true freedom. Clement, on the other hand, asserts that it is not the body but the intellect that is made in God's image, and man has free will to decide and live. Clement also analyzes the nature of perfection in newly baptized Christians. Clement explains his theology of asceticism in terms of ‘synergy’, emphasizing Christians obeying God's commandments and how their actions become righteous. Irenaeus gives focus on the economy of Scripture while Clement emphasizes how paideia results in man's salvation.

Keywords:   asceticism, theology, Irenaeus, Clement, apatheia, economy, freedom, salvation, paideia, perfection

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