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By Max. Rieser

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Here this angle of ethics is strengthened, the poor, the slave is divine, in the person of the Xristos. The faith of the Xristos was never preached to Jews in their homeland, because the geographical and national, the physical and spiritual bases for it, as foreshadowed by the prophets, were lacking there. It could have been merely an importation from the Hellenistic countries, from abroad. e. in a personal way. This was already a meta­ morphosis for the comprehension of the people. It is quite futile to attempt to convert this version of the glad tidings, the miraculous life of the Xristos, into a materialistic biography, after the manner of historians of human events.

The disappear­ ance of Messianism from the doctrine of Christianity and its replacement by epiphany alone in the concept of Trinity is the most important doctrinal development in the pristine faith of the saints. It was totally alien to Judaism. The question of the double nature (human and divine) of the Xristos was left standing but was resolved on the higher level of the trinitarian concep­ tion of Deity. As the appearance of monophysitism shows, these questions never came to rest, especially in the Asiatic East.

It is not directed to Aramaic speaking Jews of the homeland but to Greek speakers, and the Greek language is essential here, as the implications of the designations "Xristos ", or the fish symbol "ichthys ", show. This is also shown by the connection of the Messianic faith with the Paschal Feast which commemo­ rates the death-and probably later on-the resurrection of the Messiah-Xris­ tos. This connection arose as a result of the identification of the suffering Messiah with the Paschal Lamb, the weakest and most innocent creature sacrificed at the feast of the unleavened breads.

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Messianism and epiphany : an essay on the origins of christianity. by Max. Rieser


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