Christianity in Jewish Terms

By Tikva Frymer-Kensky; David Novak et al. | Go to book overview

GLOSSARY
This glossary presents brief, and therefore general, definitions of key terms that appear throughout the essays in this book. For more information, and for terms not included here, the reader should consult one or more of the following references: the Encyclopedia Judaica, the Anchor Bible Dictionary, and the Encyclopedia of Religion. Another useful resource is the glossary initiated by Robert Kraft (expanded and refined by others) for the University of Pennsylvania course "Religions of the West"; it can be found on the World Wide Web at http://ccat.sas.upenn.edu/~rs2/glossopt.html.
Apocrypha From the Greek meaning "to hide" or "to uncover." Refers to certain Jewish books written in the Hellenistic-Roman period that came to be included in the Greek translation of Jewish scriptures (and thus in the Eastern Christian biblical canon) and in the Roman Catholic canon (as "deuterocanonical") but not in the Jewish or Protestant biblical canons.
Apostle Greek for "ambassador, legate." In early Christian circles, it was used to refer especially to the earliest missionaries sent out to preach the gospel message concerning Jesus; traditionally twelve of Jesus' close associates came to be called "the 12 Apostles" (also "the 12 disciples"). Paul considered himself an apostle of Jesus Christ, although he had not been an associate of Jesus during his life.
Augustine (354-430 C.E.) One of the foremost philosophers and theologians of early Christianity. He had a profound influence on the subsequent development of Western thought and culture and first gave shape to the themes and defined the problems that have characterized the Western tradition of Christian theology.
B.C.E. (before the common era) An attempt to use a neutral designation for the period traditionally labeled "B.C." (before Christ) by Christians. Thus 586 B.C.E. is identical to 586 B.C.
Baptism In earliest Christianity, the rite of ritual immersion in water that initiated a person (usually an "adult") into the Christian church. Later, pouring or sprinkling with water, as well as the practice of baptizing infants, came into use in some churches.
Bar Kochba, Simon Jewish leader of a failed revolt against Rome ( 132-135 C.E.).
Ben (Hebrew) or Bar (Aramaic) "Son," used frequently in "patronymics" (naming by identity of father); Akibaben Joseph means Akiba son of Joseph.
C.E. (common era) An attempt to use a neutral designation for the period traditionally labeled "A.D." (in Latin, anno domini, or "year of the Lord") by Christians. Thus 1992 C.E. is identical to 1992 A.D.

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