Drawing on other parts of their writings, what are Tertullian and Justin Martyr saying about faith, reason, and philosophy in these passages?Tertullian says that the gospel brought about faith as it tells the story of Jesus. He goes ahead to say that when faith is rooted in Jesus, one does not need research another truth. On his side, Justin says that despite the fact that the prophets and Greek philosophers lived during different historical years; their belief on reason is the same. Tertullian says that what philosophers say is not import while Justin says it is essential as it agrees with the prophets’ words.
Are their positions in conflict?
Their views conflict with each other’s opinions. Tertullian takes the New Testament approach to faith while Justin uses the Old Testament. Tertullian says that there is no need to search for the truth as Jesus is the truth. Justin on his part says that the seed of truth is planted in every man. The two do not conflict but agree that truth is in each person. Jesus brought the truth, and that is why there is no need for anyone to search for it. The prophets and early Greek philosophers alike had the truths planted in their hearts. Tertullian’s perspective shows that there is no need for the Greek philosophers’ teachings. He seems not to regard their teachings on Jesus. On the other hand, Justin shows that the Greek lessons comply with the prophets in the bible.
What are the implications of each perspective?
From the texts of Tertullian, it implies that Jesus is true despite the teachings that exist. On the other hand, Justin implies that the truth not only started when Jesus came, but it was there even when the prophets lived. He implies that Greek philosophers make the prophets’ teachings stronger. The two, therefore, implies that the truth was there in human hearts from the start.
- Bingham, D. Jeffrey. Pocket History of the Church. InterVarsity Press, 2002.
- Kerr, Hugh T. Readings in Christian thought. Abingdon Press, 2010.
- Lane, Tony, and A. N. S. Lane. Concise History of Christian Thought, A. Baker Academic, 2006.