Chapter

Theology of Ascent

Mark S. M. Scott

in Journey Back to God

Published in print July 2012 | ISBN: 9780199841141
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199949809 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199841141.003.0006

Series: AAR ACADEMY SER

Theology of Ascent

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The fifth chapter explores Origen's spirituality. It argues that his theodicy does not dissociate the logical and spiritual problem of evil: they are deeply interconnected. It shows how the themes of his theodicy calibrate with the journey of the soul to perfection. In particular, this chapter traces his theory of the progressive ascent of the soul in his allegorical interpretation of the Exodus in his Homilies on Numbers and the union of the Bride and Bridegroom in his commentaries and homilies on the Song of Songs. The stages of the Exodus correspond to the stages of the soul's purification. Similarly, the three books of Solomon correspond to the threefold ascent of the soul. Just as the fall of the soul occurred gradually, so its restoration occurs gradually. Finally, the chapter engages the problem of the nature of the resurrected body in Origen's eschatology.

Keywords: spirituality; mysticism; divinization; purification; perfection; resurrection; eschatology; la nouvelle théologie; Exodus; Song of Songs

Chapter.  12578 words. 

Subjects: Early Christianity

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