In chapters 36-41 Justin continues to quote prophecies of the coming Messiah from the Hebrew Bible, mainly from Isaiah and Psalms – seven from the former and five from the latter, including all of Psalms 1 and 2, as a single quote.  Chapter 41 ends with a quotation from Psalm 96, most of the first ten verses.  The last sentence (10a) is “the Lord reigneth from the tree.”  Neither the Septuagint nor the Masoretic text have anything like “from the tree,” but both Tertullian and Augustine have it, as well as Justin.  The Epistle of Barnabas talks about “the tree” also (chapter 8).  It appears that the early church fathers believed that the original psalm included those words, but the rabbis deleted it, ostensibly to discourage anyone from concluding that David foresaw Jesus and his crucifixion.   


We remain puzzled why Justin would expect a Roman emperor to be persuaded by Jewish prophecies that Jesus was the Son of God and Christianity was the only true religion. 


Chapter 42 reminded us of “Alice’s axiom,” but in reverse.  Alice’s axiom is, “Ex Eventu prophecy is very accurate.”  Put differently, if you know something has happened, you predict that it will happen.  Justin turns that around.  If the prophets know that something will take place (thanks to God), they speak as if it has already taken place.  Dating anything on that basis would be a mare’s nest.


In chapter 43, Justin proves he is no Protestant, and especially no Presbyterian.  He scorns the idea of predestination, rips it up, down and sideways, and he doesn’t believe in justification by faith alone, either.