Syncretism: The Earliest Yet Christian Inscription and What it Suggests

Researchers have identified what is believed to be the world’s earliest surviving Christian inscription, shedding light on an ancient sect that followed the teachings of a second-century philosopher named Valentinus.


  1. As translated by Snyder, the inscription reads:
  2. To my bath, the brothers of the bridal chamber carry the torches,
    [here] in our halls, they hunger for the [true] banquets,
    even while praising the Father and glorifying the Son.
    There [with the Father and the Son] is the only spring and source of truth.
  3. Details on the provenance of the inscription are sketchy. It was first published in 1953 by Luigi Moretti in the “Bullettino della commissione archeologica comunale di Roma,” an Italian archaeological journal published annually.

Via Antonio, who has more.

Frankly it isn’t at all surprising that early Christians were a tad syncretistic. Read 1 Corinthians and you can see the problem well documented.