Origen and the Spiritual Reading of the Song of Songs

J. Christopher King

in Origen on the Song of Songs as the Spirit of Scripture

Published in print October 2005 | ISBN: 9780199272181
Published online February 2006 | e-ISBN: 9780191603433 | DOI:

Series: Oxford Theological Monographs

Origen and the Spiritual Reading of the Song of Songs

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This chapter examines the status of the literal sense of the Commentary and Homilies on the Song, focusing on Origen’s hermeneutic, in order to place the ‘bodilessness’ of the Song in the context of his whole doctrine of Scripture. It provides three main conclusions: that all ‘bodiless’ texts retain a vital connection with the sensibility and corporeality of the ‘letter’; that the ‘letter’ of ‘bodiless’ text has not simply disappeared but converged with and terminated in the ‘spirit’; and that the interconnected logoi of the ‘bodiless’ text make higher realities present in pure immediacy. These conclusions apply equally to all ‘bodiless’ texts, not exclusively to the Song.

Keywords: Origen; Song of Songs; Commentary; Homilies on the Song; bodiless

Chapter.  15661 words. 

Subjects: Early Christianity

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