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Tiresias: The Ancient Mediterranean Religions Source Database



771
Anon., Acts Of John, 49-55


nanBut the young man, beholding the violence (sharpness) of death, and looking to be taken, drew out the sickle that was in his girdle and started to run to his own abode; and John met him and said: Stand still, thou most shameless devil, and tell me whither thou runnest bearing a sickle that thirsteth for blood. And the young man was troubled and cast the iron on the ground, and said to him: I have done a wretched and barbarous deed and I know it, and so I determined to do an evil yet worse and more cruel, even to die myself at once. For because my father was alway curbing me to sobriety, that I should live without adultery, and chastely, I could not endure him to reprove me, and I kicked him and slew him, and when I saw what was done, I was hasting to the woman for whose sake I became my father's murderer, with intent to kill her and her husband, and myself last of all: for I could not bear to be seen of the husband of the woman, and undergo the judgement of death.


nanAnd John said to him: That I may not by going away and leaving you in danger give place to him that desireth to laugh and sport with thee, come thou with me and show me thy father, where he lieth. And if I raise him up for thee, wilt thou hereafter abstain from the woman that is become a snare to thee. And the young man said: If thou raisest up my father himself for me alive, and if I see him whole and continuing in life, I will hereafter abstain from her.


nanAnd while he was speaking, they came to the place where the old man lay dead, and many passers-by were standing near thereto. And John said to the youth: Thou wretched man, didst thou not spare even the old age of thy father? And he, weeping and tearing his hair, said that he repented thereof; and John the servant of the Lord said: Thou didst show me I was to set forth for this place, thou knewest that this would come to pass, from whom nothing can be hid of things done in life, that givest me power to work every cure and healing by thy will: now also give me this old man alive, for thou seest that his murderer is become his own judge: and spare him, thou only Lord, that spared not his father (because he) counselled him for the best.


nanAnd with these words he came near to the old man and said: My Lord will not be weak to spread out his kind pity and his condescending mercy even unto thee: rise up therefore and give glory to God for the work that is come to pass at this moment. And the old man said: I arise, Lord. And he rose and sat up and said: I was released from a terrible life and had to bear the insults of my son, dreadful and many, and his want of natural affection, and to what end hast thou called me back, O man of the living God? (And John answered him: If) thou art raised only for the same end, it were better for thee to die; but raise thyself unto better things. And he took him and led him into the city, preaching unto him the grace of God, so that before he entered the gate the old man believed.


nanBut the young man, when he beheld the unlooked-for raising of his father, and the saving of himself, took a sickle and mutilated himself, and ran to the house wherein he had his adulteress, and reproached her, saying: For thy sake I became the murderer of my father and of you two and of myself: there thou hast that which is alike guilty of all. For on me God hath had mercy, that I should know his power.


nanAnd he came back and told John in presence of the brethren what he had done. But John said to him: He that put it into thine heart, young man, to kill thy father and become the adulterer of another man's wife, the same made thee think it a right deed to take away also the unruly members. But thou shouldest have done away, not with the place of sin, but the thought which through those members showed itself harmful: for it is not the instruments that are injurious, but the unseen springs by which every shameful emotion is stirred and cometh to light. Repent therefore, my child, of this fault, and having learnt the wiles of Satan thou shalt have God to help thee in all the necessities of thy soul. And the young man kept silence and attended, having repented of his former sins, that he should obtain pardon from the goodness of God: and he did not separate from John.


nanWhen, then, these things had been done by him in the city of the Ephesians, they of Smyrna sent unto him saying: We hear that the God whom thou preachest is not envious, and hath charged thee not to show partiality by abiding in one place. Since, then, thou art a preacher of such a God, come unto Smyrna and unto the other cities, that we may come to know thy God, and having known him may have our hope in him. [Q has the above story also, and continues with an incident which is also quoted in a different form (and not as from these Acts) by John Cassian. Q has it thus: Now one day as John was seated, a partridge flew by and came and played in the dust before him; and John looked on it and wondered. And a certain priest came, who was one of his hearers, and came to John and saw the partridge playing in the dust before him, and was offended in himself and said: Can such and so great a man take pleasure in a partridge playing in the dust? But John perceiving in the spirit the thought of him, said to him: It were better for thee also, my child, to look at a partridge playing in the dust and not to defile thyself with shameful and profane practices: for he who awaiteth the conversion and repentance of all men hath brought thee here on this account: for I have no need of a partridge playing in the dust. For the partridge is thine own soul. Then the elder, hearing this and seeing that he was not bidden, but that the apostle of Christ had told him all that was in his heart, fell on his face on the earth and cried aloud, saying: Now know I that God dwelleth in thee, O blessed John! for he that tempteth thee tempteth him that cannot be tempted. And he entreated him to pray for him. And he instructed him and delivered him the rules (canons) and let him go to his house, glorifying God that is over all. Cassian, Collation XXIV. 21, has it thus: It is told that the most blessed Evangelist John, when he was gently stroking a partridge with his hands, suddenly saw one in the habit of a hunter coming to him. He wondered that a man of such repute and fame should demean himself to such small and humble amusements, and said: Art thou that John whose eminent and widespread fame hath enticed me also with great desire to know thee? Why then art thou taken up with such mean amusements? The blessed John said to him: What is that which thou carriest in thy hands? A bow, said he. And why, said he, dost thou not bear it about always stretched? He answered him: I must not, lest by constant bending the strength of its vigour be wrung and grow soft and perish, and when there is need that the arrows be shot with much strength at some beast, the strength being lost by excess of continual tension, a forcible blow cannot be dealt. Just so, said the blessed John, let not this little and brief relaxation of my mind offend thee, young man, for unless it doth sometimes ease and relax by some remission the force of its tension, it will grow slack through unbroken rigour and will not be able to obey the power of the Spirit. The only common point of the two stories is that St. John amuses himself with a partridge, and a spectator thinks it unworthy of him. The two morals differ wholly. The amount of text lost here is of quite uncertain length. It must have told of the doings at Smyrna, and also, it appears, at Laodicca (see the title of the next section). One of the episodes must have been the conversion of a woman of evil life (see below, 'the harlot that was chaste ')-] Our best manuscript prefixes a title to the next section: From Laodicca to Ephesus the second time.


Intertexts (texts cited often on the same page as the searched text):

4 results
1. New Testament, John, 21, 20 (1st cent. CE - 1st cent. CE)

2. Anon., The Acts of John, 101-102, 106-110, 113, 19-29, 31, 33-54, 60-61, 63-100 (2nd cent. CE - 3rd cent. CE)

100. Now the multitude of one aspect (al. of one aspect) that is about the cross is the lower nature: and they whom thou seest in the cross, if they have not one form, it is because not yet hath every member of him that came down been comprehended. But when the human nature (or the upper nature) is taken up, and the race which draweth near unto me and obeyeth my voice, he that now heareth me shall be united therewith, and shall no more be that which now he is, but above them, as I also now am. For so long as thou callest not thyself mine, I am not that which I am (or was): but if thou hear me, thou, hearing, shalt be as I am, and I shall be that which I was, when I thee as I am with myself. For from me thou art that (which I am). Care not therefore for the many, and them that are outside the mystery despise; for know thou that I am wholly with the Father, and the Father with me.
3. Anon., Acts of John, 101-102, 106-110, 113, 19-29, 31, 33-48, 50-55, 60-61, 63-100 (2nd cent. CE - 3rd cent. CE)

100. Now the multitude of one aspect (al. of one aspect) that is about the cross is the lower nature: and they whom thou seest in the cross, if they have not one form, it is because not yet hath every member of him that came down been comprehended. But when the human nature (or the upper nature) is taken up, and the race which draweth near unto me and obeyeth my voice, he that now heareth me shall be united therewith, and shall no more be that which now he is, but above them, as I also now am. For so long as thou callest not thyself mine, I am not that which I am (or was): but if thou hear me, thou, hearing, shalt be as I am, and I shall be that which I was, when I thee as I am with myself. For from me thou art that (which I am). Care not therefore for the many, and them that are outside the mystery despise; for know thou that I am wholly with the Father, and the Father with me.
4. Nag Hammadi, The Treatise On The Resurrection, 49.9-49.25 (3rd cent. CE - 3rd cent. CE)



Subjects of this text:

subject book bibliographic info
acts of john, and liberation Bremmer, Magic and Martyrs in Early Christianity: Collected Essays (2017) 110
acts of john, and roman world Bremmer, Magic and Martyrs in Early Christianity: Collected Essays (2017) 110
acts of john, female readership Bremmer, Magic and Martyrs in Early Christianity: Collected Essays (2017) 110
acts of john, women Bremmer, Magic and Martyrs in Early Christianity: Collected Essays (2017) 110
acts of paul (and thecla) McGowan, Ascetic Eucharists: Food and Drink in Early Christian Ritual Meals (1999) 187
acts of paul and thecla, female readership Bremmer, Magic and Martyrs in Early Christianity: Collected Essays (2017) 110
acts of peter McGowan, Ascetic Eucharists: Food and Drink in Early Christian Ritual Meals (1999) 187
andronicus Bremmer, Magic and Martyrs in Early Christianity: Collected Essays (2017) 110
apocryphal acts McGowan, Ascetic Eucharists: Food and Drink in Early Christian Ritual Meals (1999) 187
apocryphal texts, armenian Piovanelli, Burke, Pettipiece, Rediscovering the Apocryphal Continent: New Perspectives on Early Christian and Late Antique Apocryphal Textsand Traditions. De Gruyter: 2015 (2015) 262, 265
apocryphal texts, syriac Piovanelli, Burke, Pettipiece, Rediscovering the Apocryphal Continent: New Perspectives on Early Christian and Late Antique Apocryphal Textsand Traditions. De Gruyter: 2015 (2015) 262
bread McGowan, Ascetic Eucharists: Food and Drink in Early Christian Ritual Meals (1999) 187
breaking of the bread McGowan, Ascetic Eucharists: Food and Drink in Early Christian Ritual Meals (1999) 187
cleopatra Bremmer, Magic and Martyrs in Early Christianity: Collected Essays (2017) 110
drusiana Bremmer, Magic and Martyrs in Early Christianity: Collected Essays (2017) 110
eschatology Piovanelli, Burke, Pettipiece, Rediscovering the Apocryphal Continent: New Perspectives on Early Christian and Late Antique Apocryphal Textsand Traditions. De Gruyter: 2015 (2015) 265
eucharist, of bread and water McGowan, Ascetic Eucharists: Food and Drink in Early Christian Ritual Meals (1999) 187
eucharist Piovanelli, Burke, Pettipiece, Rediscovering the Apocryphal Continent: New Perspectives on Early Christian and Late Antique Apocryphal Textsand Traditions. De Gruyter: 2015 (2015) 265
sacrifice, criticism/avoidance of McGowan, Ascetic Eucharists: Food and Drink in Early Christian Ritual Meals (1999) 187
sexuality, sexual abstinence' McGowan, Ascetic Eucharists: Food and Drink in Early Christian Ritual Meals (1999) 187