Justin Martyr, St

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Justin Martyr, St (c.100–c.165). Early Christian apologist (see APOLOGETICS). A native of Samaria, he became a Christian after a long search for truth in pagan philosophies. According to an authentic record of proceedings, he and some of his disciples were denounced as Christians and, on refusing to sacrifice, they were beheaded. Justin's First Apology (c.155) argues that traces of the truth are to be found in pagan thinkers, since all share in the ‘generative word’ (logos spermatikos), but Christianity alone is rationally credible, because the logos became incarnate to redeem as well as to instruct. His Dialogue with Trypho (R. Tarphon) the Jew is considered one of the more fair-minded of ancient Christian rebuttals of Judaism.

Justin Martyr, Saint

views updated Jun 08 2018

Justin Martyr, Saint (100–165) Greek philosopher. He was one of the first Christian apologists in the early Church. Raised as a Jew, he converted to Christianity, probably while studying Platonic and Stoic philosophy at Ephesus. He strongly defended Christian doctrine and was put to death in Rome for his faith. His feast day is June 1.

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Saint Justin Martyr

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Saint Justin Martyr