Judging the Judges. Exaltation and Humiliation in Origen’s Homilies on Judges

Sara Contini

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter in a book


In his Homilies on Judges, Origen deals with the biblical narrative of the cyclical abandonment and renewal of the covenant between God and his people: the Israelites neglect their pact (διαθήκη, Judg. 2:1) with God, and God hands them over to their enemies; this punishment serves an educational purpose, as it prompts the Israelites to pray to God to raise a new leader amongst them. The heroes of the Book of Judges, such as Ehud or Gideon, are interpreted by Origen as mediators between humanity and heaven, in light of his notion of the journey of the human soul from the slavery of sin back to the triumph in Christ. This paper intends to investigate passages from the homilies where Origen, in Rufinus’ translation, reflects on the relationship between God and his children, and on the role of these coercive mediators who facilitate this connection, by employing an effective communication style based on powerful oppositions as a form of “hard power.”
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAdamantiana 21: Perspectives on Origen and the History of his Reception
EditorsAlfons Fürst
Place of PublicationMünster
Number of pages100
ISBN (Print)978-3-402-13752-9
Publication statusPublished - 6 Sep 2021


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