Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Satan: The Early Christian Tradition” as Want to Read:
Satan: The Early Christian Tradition
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Satan: The Early Christian Tradition

3.83  ·  Rating Details ·  99 Ratings  ·  10 Reviews
Undeniably, evil exists in our world; we ourselves commit evil acts. How can one account for evil's ageless presence, its attraction, and its fruits? The question is one that Jeffrey Burton Russell addresses in his history of the concept of the Devil the personification of evil itself. In the predecessor to this book, The Devil: Perceptions of Evil from Antiquity to Primit ...more
Paperback, 258 pages
Published August 25th 1987 by Cornell University Press (first published December 12th 1981)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Satan, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Satan

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Nick
Feb 23, 2016 Nick rated it liked it
Jeffery Burton Russell's "Satan: The Early Christian Tradition" is, like Elaine Pagels' later "The Origin of Satan", in part a meditation on the nature of evil, using the various early Christian schools as a framework. While Pagels focused largely but not exclusively on the Gospels, Russell concerns himself with the early writers, famous and forgotten, concluding with Augustine. These writers faced the problem of developing the intellectual framework of their still-developing faith, and they lai ...more
Paul
Nov 25, 2011 Paul rated it really liked it
In this second book in the series that began with The Devil: Perceptions of Evil from Antiquity to Primitive Christianity, Jeffrey Burton Russell picks up the story of the Devil where the New Testament left it and carries it on to the time of St. Augustine in the 5th century.

The "story" he's telling is actually that of the development of the "concept" of the Devil, a term that he is at pains to distinguish from that of "idea". For Russell, while an idea "is intellectual and closely defined, a co
...more
Mehmet Dönmez
Jun 19, 2016 Mehmet Dönmez rated it liked it
Shelves: din-felsefe
4 kitaplı bir serinin ikinci kitabı, erken Hristiyanlık zamanlarında Şeytan kavramına nasıl bakıldığını irdeliyor. Konusu ve konsepti son derece cazip olsa da, gerek dilinin ağırlığı, gerek Hristiyan ekastolojisine olan göndermeleri itibarıyla benim çok zor okuduğum ve yazılanların çoğunu anlamadığım bir eser oldu.

Kitabın temel tartışma eksenlerinden bazılarının, örneğin Hristiyanlıkta kötülüğün kaynağı (yani kötülük Tanrının bünyesinde mi vardır, yoksa ondan bağımsız olarak mı yaratılmıştır), ö
...more
Jeff McCormack
In Russell's first volume, The Devil: Personifications of Evil from Antiquity to Primitive Christianity, he dealt with an era of time that was much more diverse, covering ancient history of all kinds of religious views. This time around, he sticks with Christian history, and focuses on only the first few hundred years of church history. A much easier read than the first volume, and covering an era already somewhat familiar to me, this volume was easier to digest overall.

I found it very interesti
...more
Joseph F.
Aug 04, 2013 Joseph F. rated it it was amazing
Part 2 of Russell's monumental study of history's baddest dude. The author gives us the many opinions that the early church fathers had of who Satan was, when and why he fell from grace, and the problems of reconciling evil with the existence of a loving God. The book is heavy on philosophy and history as well as theology, so be prepared for a cerebral workout. I did not know so much could be written about Satan in such a small slice of history (1st to 6th Centuries AD).
But he is more complicate
...more
Steven
Oct 07, 2011 Steven rated it liked it
Jeffrey Burton Russell is the author of (at least) five books on Satan, mostly biographies, so I think it's safe to say that we need to give the devil his due, he knows his Lucifer. This particular volume is a study of the Christian Devil up to the time of St. Augustine. Your enjoyment of the book depends on how much detail you want to know about what people thought of Satan during that time period. I won't say that you'll have a devil of a good time, but at least there won't be hell to pay.
A b
...more
Adam
May 17, 2016 Adam rated it really liked it
I just picked this book up again after years. I have read excerpts in the past. I decided to sit down with it an plow through. I really appreciate what Jeffrey Burton Russell contributes to theology and philosophy. He is really good about taking a survey of the historical development of a concept and giving it to his readers in a way that is thorough, and yet approachable, deep, but not daunting. Satan: The Early Christian Tradition, is no exception. An invaluable perspective.
Burcu
Jun 01, 2015 Burcu added it
Kitabin degerlendirmesi icin, bkz. http://wanderlustpress.blogspot.com.t...
Walt
Jan 29, 2009 Walt rated it liked it
Shelves: religion
Focusing largely on late Medieval European interpretations, this is a good book describing the literary development of Satan from obscure Zoroastrian Persia to the present day.
Dan Bee
Sep 06, 2013 Dan Bee rated it liked it
An interesting and informative look at the concept of Evil from a purely historiological perspective. Good read.
Eslamious
Eslamious rated it really liked it
Feb 25, 2013
s. koh
s. koh rated it it was amazing
Nov 04, 2015
Bruce Greene
Bruce Greene rated it liked it
Sep 15, 2014
Will Caskey
Will Caskey rated it really liked it
Dec 30, 2011
Kenny Brouwers
Kenny Brouwers rated it really liked it
Sep 29, 2014
Daniel Lukotch
Daniel Lukotch rated it it was amazing
Jan 07, 2015
Pelayo
Pelayo rated it really liked it
Oct 22, 2011
Mandy Kirk
Mandy Kirk rated it really liked it
Jan 15, 2012
Richard
Richard rated it really liked it
Jul 06, 2015
Michael Graham
Michael Graham rated it liked it
Oct 19, 2010
Aaron Woodsworth
Aaron Woodsworth rated it it was amazing
Jul 09, 2008
Darrol Pierson
Darrol Pierson rated it liked it
Apr 20, 2015
Jack
Jack rated it really liked it
Aug 09, 2011
Rachel Summers
Rachel Summers rated it really liked it
Dec 04, 2012
Larry
Larry rated it liked it
Nov 16, 2014
Tom Hatsis
Tom Hatsis rated it really liked it
Jul 13, 2015
Abraham Sixx
Abraham Sixx rated it it was amazing
Oct 04, 2013
Abby
Abby rated it really liked it
Aug 18, 2014
Rebecca
Rebecca rated it really liked it
Sep 21, 2015
« previous 1 3 4 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • The Birth of Satan: Tracing the Devil's Biblical Roots
  • The Time Falling Bodies Take To Light: Mythology, Sexuality and the Origins of Culture
  • The Jack Tales
  • The History of Hell
  • Nero
  • Cross Your Fingers, Spit in Your Hat
  • A New History of Early Christianity
  • Advaita Vedanta: A Philosophical Reconstruction
  • An Exorcist: More Stories
  • Mandala Symbolism
  • Damned: An Illustrated History of the Devil
  • The History of the Devil and the Idea of Evil
  • The Cult of the Black Virgin
  • Sex Magic, Tantra & Tarot: The Way of the Secret Lover
  • The Oxford History Of The Biblical World
  • A History of the Devil
  • The Crusades: Iron Men and Saints
  • Witchcraft in Europe, 400-1700: A Documentary History
1281
Jeffrey Burton Russell is Professor of History, Emeritus, at the University of California, Santa Barbara. Besides UCSB, he has taught History and Religious Studies at Berkeley, Riverside, Harvard, New Mexico, and Notre Dame. He has published seventeen books and many articles, most of them in his special field, history of theology. He is most noted for his five-volume history of the concept of the ...more
More about Jeffrey Burton Russell...

Share This Book