Valentinius, a mid-2nd century Gnostic thinker and preacher, was among the early Christians who attempted to align Christianity with middle Platonism. Valentinius pooled dual concepts from the Platonic world of ideal forms, or fullness, (pleroma) and the lower world of phenomena, or emptiness (kenoma). Employing a third concept of cosmos, what is manifest, Valentinian initiates could exegete scripture in light of these three aspects of correlated existence.

The ancient Greek term for emptiness or void (kenoma), as pertaining to Theodotus's exegesis of Gospel of John chapter 1 verse 3, is described in The Excerpta ex Theodoto of Clement of Alexandria (Casey, 1934).


  • Elaine Pagels, The Johannine Gospel in Gnostic Exegesis, ed. J. Ross (Atlanta, 1989)
  • The Excerpta ex Theodoto of Clement of Alexandria, ed., transl., and intro. by R.P. Casey (London, 1934).

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