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Showing posts from March, 2016

Paul’s Use of Pagan Literature

Did you know that several writers of scripture referred to or quoted other literature? This shouldn’t come as a surprise, since the Christian worldview allows a person to affirm truth wherever it is found. The Apostle Paul seems especially well read in this area and used authors his readers would be familiar with to connect with his audience or illustrate a point. Here are a few examples of pagan citations that have interested me over the years.

Epimenides of Knossos, a sixth century BC pagan poet who lived in Crete,seems to be one of Paul’s favorites.In Acts 17:28, Paul is quoting Epimenides when he says, “for in him we live and move and have our being.”Legend has it that this eccentric poet never quite blended in with his fellow Cretans, since he always wore his hair long.Some even believe he was called on to stop a plague in Athens that led to the erection of an altar to “the unknown god” that Paul found centuries later.Paul quoted him a second time when writing to his protégé, T…