Greek and Roman Literature


Much of the Greek and Roman literature is ignored by teachers and parents because of the assumption that mythology (the basis for most of the Greek characters and ideas) is far removed from the Christian perspective.  I encourage parents to take a second look at the Greek and Roman literature for its contributions to social actions.  I intend to devote several columns to the review of some of these classic teachings so that parents may realize common ground in many values expressed by the ancient writers.  Although these writers were certainly not inspired as the authors of biblical text, God instilled in many of them an inherent knowledge of a supreme being and moral responsibilities.  Moral responsibility and ethics play the most prominent role in the ancient writings.  Moral teachings deal with understanding the difference between right and wrong according to a particular standard.  For Christians, the Bible becomes our absolute authority.  For the ancient writers (who certainly predate most New Testament teachings), a strict code of morality and ethics governed their lives.  They knew the necessity of standards (laws), respect for authority, and civility.  Yes, the Greeks and Romans had their sinners, but serious punishment for wrongdoing was the order of the day. As you read through the recommended readings in the following columns, you will find one abiding rule of all ancient writers: laws and rules must be considered as absolutes which are strictly enforced by severe punishments.  That’s not a bad idea for our day.