Dito como “homem estranho” pelo seu povo, Epimênides era um dos poucos da sua época e região que criam em apenas um Deus e, segundo conta Diógenes Laertius, quando houve a praga em Atenas muito se fizeram de holocaustos para “apaziguar a fúria dos deuses”, que passavam de 30.000, ou seja, tinham mais deuses em estátuas nas ruas do que pessoas vivendo em Atenas, onde foram até chamados sacerdotes egípcios e babilônicos para tentarem resolver aquela praga, mas sem sucesso algum. Quando então lembraram o Deus único de Epimênides, então o chamaram. Ele mostrou-os o erro de adorarem deuses que não poderiam os ajudar em nada, e mandou que colocassem ovelhas no alto do areópago que estas iriam lhes mostrar o local onde esse Deus queria ser adorado. Então, num ato “místico” as ovelhas desceram o areópago e andaram até um local onde não havia nenhum tipo de idolatria. E ali os artífices construíram um altar e como não sabiam o “nome” desse Deus, a mando de Epimênides talharam como “o Deus desconhecido” (assim como descrito em Atos 17:23), e assim conseguiram resolver o problema da praga.
Saifullah, M. S. M. (1999), “Epimenides’ Paradox: Was Paul Inspired?,” Islamic Awareness
Paul was a well-educated man. He was trained by the highly respected Jewish teacher, Gamaliel (Acts 22:3; 5:34), and was knowledgeable not only in Jewish Scripture and literature, but also in classical Greek literature. While lecturing a group of Epicurean and Stoic philosophers in Acts 17:22-34, Paul, in verse 28, quoted from Epimenides’ Cretica (“For in him we live and move and have our being”) and Aratus’ Phaenomena (“For we are also his offspring”), using these two pagan poets to make a point. In 1 Corinthians 15:33, Paul quoted from Menander’s comedy Thais (“Evil company corrupts good habits”). However, when Paul spoke to Titus concerning his mission on the island of Crete, some critics have suggested that the apostle committed a logical fallacy by quoting the Cretan poet Epimenides: “One of them, a prophet of their own, said, ‘Cretans are always liars, evil beasts, lazy gluttons.’ This testimony is true” (Titus 1:12-13a).
Stated as “strange man” by his people , Epimenides was one of the few of his era and region who believed in only one God , and Diogenes Laertius second counts when there was a plague in Athens very burnt offerings were made to “appease the fury of gods” , who passed 30,000 , ie , had more gods statues in the streets than people living in Athens , where they were called by the Egyptians and Babylonians priests to try to solve the plague , but without any success. When then remembered the one God of Epimenides , then called .He showed them the error of worshiping gods who could not help at all , and told them to put sheep on top of the Areopagus that they would show them where that God wanted to be worshiped. So , a “mystic” act the sheep down the Areopagus and walked to a place where there was no kind of idolatry. And there the craftsmen built an altar and how they did not know the “name ” of God , at the behest of Epimenides carved as “the unknown God” (as described in Acts 17:23) , and so managed to solve the pest problem.
This is a form of the logical paradox commonly known as Epimenides’ Paradox: “A Cretan said, ‘All Cretans are liars.’ ” If, as Paul affirms, this statement is true, then the statement is false because a Cretan, who is a liar, made it. These affirmations—that the statement is true and the statement is false—contradict each other and violate the Law of Non-Contradiction, because a statement cannot be both true and false at the same time. The Islamic apologist M.S.M. Saifullah stated concerning Titus 1:12, “The writer Paul at least on this occasion, was without Divine Guidance for he did not discern the subtlety” (Saifullah, 1999). What is a Christian’s response to this attack upon the infallibility of the inspired Word?
The first step in understanding this alleged contradiction is to realize that Epimenides was a poet. Poets, playwrights, and other writers sometimes use a literary technique known as hyperbole, which is a deliberate exaggeration used to make a point. To say that “Cretans are always liars, evil beasts, lazy gluttons,” is to say that the Cretan society as a whole was immoral and decadent, not necessarily that every single individual in that society was a liar, evil beast, or lazy glutton. When viewed in the light of hyperbole, there is no logical paradox found in Titus 1:12. Epimenides had made a hyperbolic statement regarding the conduct of the people of Crete, and Paul was agreeing with him in order to point out to Titus the difficulty facing the Cretan elders. Paul was not affirming a contradiction, but following a common literary convention. Once again, our Bible shines through as an inerrant book that allowed the authors’ writing styles to remain intact while maintaining the integrity of the inspired Word.