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Desiring DivinitySelf-deification in Early Jewish and Christian Mythmaking$
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M. David Litwa

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780190467166

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190467166.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 28 November 2021

“I and You Are One.”

“I and You Are One.”

Simon of Samaria as Hero and Heretic

(p.91) 5 “I and You Are One.”
Desiring Divinity

M. David Litwa

Oxford University Press

This chapter first attempts to reconstruct Simonian theology from the Simonian document called The Great Declaration (preserved in the anonymous Refutation of All Heresies). Next, it traces the development of Simon’s character in the Acts of the Apostles and later heresiographical mythology. In this mythology, Simon morphs from a Samaritan magician-become-Christian to a deified man to a self-deified magician who acts as the archenemy of the apostles and false Christ. It is uncertain—in fact unlikely—that any of these metamorphoses describe the historical Simon. Instead, they describe discursive processes wherein Christian communities localized perceived others in their midst and ritually exorcized them.

Keywords:   Simon of Samaria, Simon Magus, The Great Declaration, Justin Martyr, Irenaeus, Refutation of All Heresies, Acts of Peter, Clementine Homilies, heresiography

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