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HISTORY of Christian Theology

A method of reading scripture involving figurative and symbolic meaning. Greek philosophers, particularly Platonists, used allegorical interpretation to derive moral lessons from classical Greek epics that taken literally lacked moral substance. Philo of Alexandria, a Jewish Platonist philosopher at the time of Christ, applied this approach to reading the Torah. This approach was widely adopted by early Christian theologians, particularly those from the Alexandria school of theology verses the Antioch school which stress a more literal interpretation of scripture. Allegory was inextricably tied with typology. This approach persisted throughout the middle ages, but is generally not favored by Protestants.

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