Brill Encyclopedia of Early Christianity Online

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(3,147 words)

As its etymology implies, the term “atonement” (at-one-ment) denotes the restored state of fellowship between God and humanity – God and humanity being “at one.” In the early church, a variety of categories – such as redemption, forgiveness, revealed knowledge, purification or expiation, and propitiation – contribute to making “atonement.” The word is, therefore, used …

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Moffitt, David M., “Atonement”, in: Brill Encyclopedia of Early Christianity Online, General Editor David G. Hunter, Paul J.J. van Geest, Bert Jan Lietaert Peerbolte. Consulted online on 01 October 2023 <>
First published online: 2018

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