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Title: Martyrdom from Exegesis in Hippolytus: An Early Church Presbyter's Commentary on Daniel
Author: Shelton, W Brian
Publisher: Wipf and Stock; Publication Date: 2008
Paperback; ISBN: 9781606083116
Volumes: 1; Pages: 192
List Price in Paper: $22.00 Our price: $17.99
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In the third century C.E., Emperor Septimius Severus unleashed a shocking and severe persecution against the Christian church. Witnessing the fear and confusion in his congregations, the presbyter Hippolytus crafted his Commentary on Daniel to encourage Christians confronted with the reality of martyrdom and persecution. In a work which comes to us as the earliest orthodox Christian commentary on scripture, Hippolytus interprets the text through allegory, typology, theodicy, ,paraenesis, and reflection to create a motif of martyrdom. By doing so, Hippolytus guides Christians iin their communities as they stand heroically before the tribunal of Caesar, like the Danielic characters stood before authorities in Babylon. His purpose in the commentary is clearly pastoral, arising from his role as presbyter: to exhort his Christian congregations to prepare to be martyred for Christ amidst Roman persecution.