Aphrahat; Sons of the Covenant; Syrian language; Passover
Śląskie Studia Historyczno-Teologiczne, z. 1 (2017), s. 5-18
The Homily “On the Passover” is included in the second part of Aphrahat’s “Demonstrationes” and it begins with the lōmad, the twelfth letter of the Syriac alphabet. The Persian Sage refers clearly to the preceding homily (De circumcisione) and consistently applies the biblical argumentation. In his discourse on the Passover, Aphrahat opposes the Jews, charging them with disregard for the Law and the prophets.
According to him, the Chosen Nation and its teachers rejected the God’s command to celebrate the Passover in Jerusalem only. In effect, the Jews lost their exclusive choseness and became defiled as the Gentiles. Moreover, Aphrahat accuses the Jews of deliberate forgery of the God’s law. Exclusiveness of the Chosen Nation in the Old Covenant has been replaced by the „universalism of the peoples” in the Covenant of Christ. In the teaching of the Sage the idea of Sabbath is strictly connected with the Christian Passover, which in Mesopotamia was celebrated not as a day of Christ’s resurrection, but as a remembrance of His death.