Philo on Logos

Source: Peder Borgen, “Philo of Alexandria,” Jewish Writings of the Second Temple Period, ed. Michael E. Stone (Philadelphia: Fortress, 1984) 273.

“Philo’s technical use of the term Logos connotes God’s mental activity during the act of creating. The Logos, one of the powers of the intelligible world, reaches into our world, mainly through the mediators Moses and Aaron, both called Logos. The plural logoi can indicate the heavenly principles which are embodied in the laws and precepts given to the Jews through Moses. In another sense, the Logos and the logoi may be conceived as heavenly figures such as angels and archangels. The Logos is also called a ‘second god’, or God’s firstborn.”

In light of this historical context, what did John mean when he called Jesus the Logos (John 1:1)? Was Jesus God’s spokesman? Was he the thoughts God had during the creation (i.e., the order of the universe)? “Second god” makes sense, but in what way did Philo understand that? Philo wasn’t a binitarian, was he?

About jamesbradfordpate

My name is James Pate. This blog is about my journey. I read books. I watch movies and TV shows. I go to church. I try to find meaning. And, when I can’t do that, I just talk about stuff that I find interesting. I have degrees in fields of religious studies. I have an M.Phil. in the History of Biblical Interpretation from Hebrew Union College in Cincinnati, Ohio. I also have an M.A. in Hebrew Bible from Jewish Theological Seminary, an M.Div. from Harvard Divinity School, and a B.A. from DePauw University.
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