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Jacob of Sarug’s Homilies on the Six Days of Creation: The First Day


Metrical Homilies of Mar Jacob of Sarug


Edited and Translated by Edward G Mathews Jr
Jacob of Sarug's (d. 521) homily constitutes the first example of a Hexameron, or Commentary on the Six Days of Creation, in Syriac literature. This edition presents Jacob’s comments on the first day, Gen. 1:1-5. The volume constitutes a fascicle of The Metrical Homilies of Mar Jacob of Sarug, which, when complete, will contain the original Syriac text of Jacob's surviving sermons, fully vocalized, alongside an annotated English translation.
Publisher: Gorgias Press LLC
Availability: In stock
SKU (ISBN): 978-1-60724-323-6
  • *
Publication Status: In Print

Publication Date: Sep 17,2009
Interior Color: Black
Trim Size: 6 x 9
Page Count: 76
Languages: English, Syriac
ISBN: 978-1-60724-323-6
$34.00
$20.40

In this homily, Jacob essentially insists on two main themes: that God–and God alone!–is the creator of everything that exists; and that everything that exists was created by God from nothing. Not to acknowledge these two fundamental principles leads inevitably to idolatry, an idolatry into which the world had already plunged when God chose to reveal Himself and the mystery of His creation to Moses on Mt. Sinai.

About the Series Recognized as a saint by both Chalcedonian and non-Chalcedonian Christians alike, Jacob of Sarug (d. 521) produced many narrative poems that have rarely been translated into English. Of his reported 760 metrical homilies, only about half survive. Part of a series of fascicles containing the bilingual Syriac-English editions of Saint Jacob of Sarug’s homilies, this volume contains his homilies on the Six Days of Creation. The Syriac text is fully vocalized, and the translation is annotated with a commentary and biblical references. The volume is one of the fascicles of Gorgias Press’s The Metrical Homilies of Mar Jacob of Sarug, which, when complete, will contain all of Jacob’s surviving sermons.

In this homily, Jacob essentially insists on two main themes: that God–and God alone!–is the creator of everything that exists; and that everything that exists was created by God from nothing. Not to acknowledge these two fundamental principles leads inevitably to idolatry, an idolatry into which the world had already plunged when God chose to reveal Himself and the mystery of His creation to Moses on Mt. Sinai.

About the Series Recognized as a saint by both Chalcedonian and non-Chalcedonian Christians alike, Jacob of Sarug (d. 521) produced many narrative poems that have rarely been translated into English. Of his reported 760 metrical homilies, only about half survive. Part of a series of fascicles containing the bilingual Syriac-English editions of Saint Jacob of Sarug’s homilies, this volume contains his homilies on the Six Days of Creation. The Syriac text is fully vocalized, and the translation is annotated with a commentary and biblical references. The volume is one of the fascicles of Gorgias Press’s The Metrical Homilies of Mar Jacob of Sarug, which, when complete, will contain all of Jacob’s surviving sermons.

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Contributor Biography

Edward G Mathews Jr

Edward G. Mathews Jr. taught at The Catholic University of America, Our Lady of Lebanon Maronite Seminary, University of Scranton, Hebrew University in Jerusalem, the Armenian Evangelical Seminary in Yerevan, and St. Nersess Armenian Seminary.

  • Table of Contents (page 7)
  • List of Abbreviations (page 9)
  • Introduction (page 11)
    • Outline (page 11)
    • Summary (page 13)
  • Text and Translation (page 15)
    • I. Prayer for Grace to Describe Gods Creation (page 16)
    • II. The Minds Ascent into Heaven (page 22)
    • III. The Indescribable Goodness of God (page 28)
    • IV. God Creates the World from Nothing (page 32)
    • V. God Brings into Being the Hosts of Heaven (page 36)
    • VI. The Angelic Hosts Praise their Creator (page 42)
    • VII. Creation Perfected in the Holy Trinity (page 44)
    • VIII. David, Ezekiel, and Daniel Tell of the Angels (page 46)
    • IX. The Prophets Witness to the Heavenly Beings (page 50)
    • X. All Scripture Testifies that God is Creator (page 54)
    • XI. God Created the World in Six Days (page 58)
    • XII. The Creation of Darkness and Wind (page 62)
    • XIII. The Creation of Light (page 66)
  • Bibliography of Works Cited (page 75)
    • (A) Ancient Sources (page 75)
    • Basil 65 (page 75)
    • Ephrem (page 75)
    • Jacob of Sarug (page 75)
    • Narsai (page 76)
    • (B) Secondary Works (page 76)
  • Index of Names and Themes (page 79)
  • Index of Biblical References (page 81)
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