Sunday, August 06, 2017
Bats, Ants, Frogs, and Worms
After this he continues as usual by laughing at the race of Jews and Christians, comparing them all to a cluster of bats or ants coming out of a nest, or frogs holding council round a marsh or worms assembling in some filthy corner, disagreeing with one another about which of them are the worse sinners.With ἐκκλησιάζουσι, could Celsus be alluding to ἐκκλησία (ecclesia), a word used of the synagogue of the Jews and the church of the Christians? Similarly συνεδρεύουσιν seems to recall συνέδριον (the Jewish Sanhedrin). It would be too far-fetched, however, to conjecture προσελθοῦσιν for προελθοῦσιν and to connect it with προσήλυτος (proselyte, a word derived from προσέρχομαι). As for the sinning contest, Paul declared himself winner (1 Timothy 1.15: Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief).
μετὰ ταῦτα συνήθως ἑαυτῷ γελῶν τὸ Ἰουδαίων καὶ Χριστιανῶν γένος πάντας παραβέβληκε νυκτερίδων ὁρμαθῷ ἢ μύρμηξιν ἐκ καλιᾶς προελθοῦσιν ἢ βατράχοις περὶ τέλμα συνεδρεύουσιν ἢ σκώληξιν ἐν βορβόρου γωνίᾳ ἐκκλησιάζουσι καὶ πρὸς ἀλλήλους διαφερομένοις, τίνες αὐτῶν εἶεν ἁμαρτωλότεροι.
Related post: A Puddle of Mere Slime.