Joseph Hazzaya, On Providence: Text, Translation and Introduction


The East Syriac mystic Joseph Hazzaya (8th century AD) wrote On Providence in an attempt to derive universal salvation (apokatastasis) from Theodore of Mopsuestia, the highest theological authority in the East Syriac Church, and thus to defend himself from heresy accusations coming from that Church’s Primate, Catholicos Timothy I, as Nestor Kavvadas draws out in the introduction to this first edition and translation of the treatise. At the same time, in On Providence Joseph Hazzaya reacts, by way of a remodelled Elijah-Apocalypse, to a rising wave of conversions to Islam that was to change the face of his homeland Mesopotamia as well as of the entire Middle East; thus, On Providence is a valuable addition to the scanty sources on that epochal change.

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Nestor Kavvadas, Dr. phil. (2007), University of Tübingen, is research fellow in Ancient Church History at that university. He has published monographs, translations and articles on Late Antiquity and Byzantium, including Isaak von Ninive und seine Kephalaia Gnostika (Brill, 2015).
'In making this significant work by Joseph available in an attractive format, with facing text and reliable translation, preceded by an illuminating introduction, Kavvadas has performed an excellent service.' Sebastian Brock, Oxford, Journal of Ecclesiastical History 69 (2018)

1 Date and Place

2 On Providence and Its Statement: God’s Pedagogy as the Story Line of the Bible
2.1 Joseph’s Exegesis: Demonstrating God’s Care and Mercy
2.2 The Endpoint of God’s Providence: Apokatastasis

3 Joseph’s Apocalypse

4 On Providence and Exegetical Tradition: First Soundings

On the Text

Joseph Hazzaya’s On Providence: Text and Translation

All interested in Patristic theology of Providence or in the Christianity of the Abbasid Caliphate vis-à-vis Islamisation, and anyone studying Joseph Hazzaya, East Syriac Church history, or Early Islamic Middle East.
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