Home About Network of subjects Linked subjects heatmap Book indices included Search by subject Search by reference Browse subjects Browse texts

Tiresias: The Ancient Mediterranean Religions Source Database

Tertullian, Against Marcion, 5.7

nanAnd the hidden things of darkness He will Himself bring to light, 1 Corinthians 4:5 even by Christ; for He has promised Christ to be a Light, Isaiah 42:6 and Himself He has declared to be a lamp, searching the hearts and reins. From Him also shall praise be had by every man, 1 Corinthians 4:5 from whom proceeds, as from a judge, the opposite also of praise. But here, at least, you say he interprets the world to be the God thereof, when he says: We are made a spectacle unto the world, and to angels, and to men. 1 Corinthians 4:9 For if by world he had meant the people thereof, he would not have afterwards specially mentioned men. To prevent, however, your using such an argument as this, the Holy Ghost has providentially explained the meaning of the passage thus: We are made a spectacle to the world, i.e. both to angels, who minister therein, and to men, who are the objects of their ministration. Of course, a man of the noble courage of our apostle (to say nothing of the Holy Ghost) was afraid, when writing to the children whom he had begotten in the gospel, to speak freely of the God of the world; for against Him he could not possibly seem to have a word to say, except only in a straightforward manner! I quite admit, that, according to the Creator's law, Leviticus 18:8 the man was an offender who had his father's wife. 1 Corinthians 5:1 He followed, no doubt, the principles of natural and public law. When, however, he condemns the man to be delivered unto Satan, 1 Corinthians 5:5 he becomes the herald of an avenging God. It does not matter that he also said, For the destruction of the flesh, that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord, 1 Corinthians 5:5 since both in the destruction of the flesh and in the saving of the spirit there is, on His part, judicial process; and when he bade the wicked person be put away from the midst of them, 1 Corinthians 5:13 he only mentioned what is a very frequently recurring sentence of the Creator. Purge out the old leaven, that you may be a new lump, as you are unleavened. 1 Corinthians 5:7 The unleavened bread was therefore, in the Creator's ordinance, a figure of us (Christians). For even Christ our passover is sacrificed for us. 1 Corinthians 5:7 But why is Christ our passover, if the passover be not a type of Christ, in the similitude of the blood which saves, and of the Lamb, which is Christ? Exodus 12 Why does (the apostle) clothe us and Christ with symbols of the Creator's solemn rites, unless they had relation to ourselves? When, again, he warns us against fornication, he reveals the resurrection of the flesh. The body, says he, is not for fornication, but for the Lord; and the Lord for the body, 1 Corinthians 6:13 just as the temple is for God, and God for the temple. A temple will therefore pass away with its god, and its god with the temple. You see, then, how that He who raised up the Lord will also raise us up. 1 Corinthians 6:14 In the body will He raise us, because the body is for the Lord, and the Lord for the body. And suitably does he add the question: Do you not know that your bodies are the members of Christ? 1 Corinthians 6:15 What has the heretic to say? That these members of Christ will not rise again, for they are no longer our own? For, he says, you are bought with a price. 1 Corinthians 6:20 A price! surely none at all was paid, since Christ was a phantom, nor had He any corporeal substance which He could pay for our bodies! But, in truth, Christ had wherewithal to redeem us; and since He has redeemed, at a great price, these bodies of ours, against which fornication must not be committed (because they are now members of Christ, and not our own), surely He will secure, on His own account, the safety of those whom He made His own at so much cost! Now, how shall we glorify, how shall we exalt, God in our body, 1 Corinthians 6:20 which is doomed to perish? We must now encounter the subject of marriage, which Marcion, more continent than the apostle, prohibits. For the apostle, although preferring the grace of continence, 1 Corinthians 7:7-8 yet permits the contraction of marriage and the enjoyment of it, and advises the continuance therein rather than the dissolution thereof. 1 Corinthians 7:27 Christ plainly forbids divorce, Moses unquestionably permits it. Now, when Marcion wholly prohibits all carnal intercourse to the faithful (for we will say nothing about his catechumens), and when he prescribes repudiation of all engagements before marriage, whose teaching does he follow, that of Moses or of Christ? Even Christ, however, when He here commands the wife not to depart from her husband, or if she depart, to remain unmarried or be reconciled to her husband, 1 Corinthians 7:10-11 both permitted divorce, which indeed He never absolutely prohibited, and confirmed (the sanctity) of marriage, by first forbidding its dissolution; and, if separation had taken place, by wishing the nuptial bond to be resumed by reconciliation. But what reasons does (the apostle) allege for continence? Because the time is short. 1 Corinthians 7:29 I had almost thought it was because in Christ there was another god! And yet He from whom emanates this shortness of the time, will also send what suits the said brevity. No one makes provision for the time which is another's. You degrade your god, O Marcion, when you make him circumscribed at all by the Creator's time. Assuredly also, when (the apostle) rules that marriage should be only in the Lord, 1 Corinthians 7:39 that no Christian should intermarry with a heathen, he maintains a law of the Creator, who everywhere prohibits marriage with strangers. But when he says, although there be that are called gods, whether in heaven or in earth, 1 Corinthians 8:5 the meaning of his words is clear - not as if there were gods in reality, but as if there were some who are called gods, without being truly so. He introduces his discussion about meats offered to idols with a statement concerning idols (themselves): We know that an idol is nothing in the world. 1 Corinthians 8:4 Marcion, however, does not say that the Creator is not God; so that the apostle can hardly be thought to have ranked the Creator among those who are called gods, without being so; since, even if they had been gods, to us there is but one God, the Father. 1 Corinthians 8:6 Now, from whom do all things come to us, but from Him to whom all things belong? And pray, what things are these? You have them in a preceding part of the epistle: All things are yours; whether Paul, or Apollos, or Cephas, or the world, or life, or death, or things present, or things to come. 1 Corinthians 3:21-22 He makes the Creator, then the God of all things, from whom proceed both the world and life and death, which cannot possibly belong to the other god. From Him, therefore, among the all things comes also Christ. 1 Corinthians 3:23 When he teaches that every man ought to live of his own industry, 1 Corinthians 9:13 he begins with a copious induction of examples - of soldiers, and shepherds, and husbandmen. 1 Corinthians 9:7 But he wanted divine authority. What was the use, however, of adducing the Creator's, which he was destroying? It was vain to do so; for his god had no such authority! (The apostle) says: You shall not muzzle the ox that treads out the grain, and adds: Does God take care of oxen? Yes, of oxen, for the sake of men! For, says he, it is written for our sakes. 1 Corinthians 11:10 Thus he showed that the law had a symbolic reference to ourselves, and that it gives its sanction in favour of those who live of the gospel. (He showed) also, that those who preach the gospel are on this account sent by no other god but Him to whom belongs the law, which made provision for them, when he says: For our sakes was this written. Still he declined to use this power which the law gave him, because he preferred working without any restraint. Of this he boasted, and suffered no man to rob him of such glory 1 Corinthians 9:15 - certainly with no view of destroying the law, which he proved that another man might use. For behold Marcion, in his blindness, stumbled at the rock whereof our fathers drank in the wilderness. For since that rock was Christ, 1 Corinthians 10:4 it was, of course, the Creator's, to whom also belonged the people. But why resort to the figure of a sacred sign given by an extraneous god? Was it to teach the very truth, that ancient things prefigured the Christ who was to be educed out of them? For, being about to take a cursory view of what befell the people (of Israel) he begins with saying: Now these things happened as examples for us. 1 Corinthians 10:6 Now, tell me, were these examples given by the Creator to men belonging to a rival god? Or did one god borrow examples from another, and a hostile one too? He withdraws me to himself in alarm from Him from whom he transfers my allegiance. Will his antagonist make me better disposed to him? Should I now commit the same sins as the people, shall I have to suffer the same penalties, or not? 1 Corinthians 10:7-10 But if not the same, how vainly does he propose to me terrors which I shall not have to endure! From whom, again, shall I have to endure them? If from the Creator, What evils does it appertain to Him to inflict? And how will it happen that, jealous God as He is, He shall punish the man who offends His rival, instead of rather encouraging him. If, however, from the other god - but he knows not how to punish. So that the whole declaration of the apostle lacks a reasonable basis, if it is not meant to relate to the Creator's discipline. But the fact is, the apostle's conclusion corresponds to the beginning: Now all these things happened unto them for ensamples; and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world have come. 1 Corinthians 10:11 What a Creator! How prescient already, and considerate in warning Christians who belong to another god! Whenever cavils occur the like to those which have been already dealt with, I pass them by; certain others I dispatch briefly. A great argument for another god is the permission to eat of all kinds of meats, contrary to the law. 1 Corinthians 10:25-27 Just as if we did not ourselves allow that the burdensome ordinances of the law were abrogated - but by Him who imposed them, who also promised the new condition of things. The same, therefore, who prohibited meats, also restored the use of them, just as He had indeed allowed them from the beginning. If, however, some strange god had come to destroy our God, his foremost prohibition would certainly have been, that his own votaries should abstain from supporting their lives on the resources of his adversary.

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

11 results
1. Anon., Epistle of Barnabas, 4, 14 (1st cent. CE - 2nd cent. CE)

2. Ignatius, To The Magnesians, 8 (1st cent. CE - 2nd cent. CE)

3. Tertullian, Against Marcion, 4.1.3, 4.7.3, 5.1-5.6, 5.8-5.21 (2nd cent. CE - 3rd cent. CE)

5.1. There is nothing without a beginning but God alone. Now, inasmuch as the beginning occupies the first place in the condition of all things, so it must necessarily take precedence in the treatment of them, if a clear knowledge is to be arrived at concerning their condition; for you could not find the means of examining even the quality of anything, unless you were certain of its existence, and that after discovering its origin. Since therefore I am brought, in the course of my little work, to this point, I require to know of Marcion the origin of his apostle even - I, who am to some degree a new disciple, the follower of no other master; who at the same time can believe nothing, except that nothing ought to be believed hastily (and that I may further say is hastily believed, which is believed without any examination of its beginning); in short, I who have the best reason possible for bringing this inquiry to a most careful solution, since a man is affirmed to me to be an apostle whom I do not find mentioned in the Gospel in the catalogue of the apostles. Indeed, when I hear that this man was chosen by the Lord after He had attained His rest in heaven, I feel that a kind of improvidence is imputable to Christ, for not knowing before that this man was necessary to Him; and because He thought that he must be added to the apostolic body in the way of a fortuitous encounter rather than a deliberate selection; by necessity (so to speak), and not voluntary choice, although the members of the apostolate had been duly ordained, and were now dismissed to their several missions. Wherefore, O shipmaster of Pontus, if you have never taken on board your small craft any contraband goods or smuggler's cargo, if you have never thrown overboard or tampered with a freight, you are still more careful and conscientious, I doubt not, in divine things; and so I should be glad if you would inform us under what bill of lading you admitted the Apostle Paul on board, who ticketed him, what owner forwarded him, who handed him to you, that so you may land him without any misgiving, lest he should turn out to belong to him, who can substantiate his claim to him by producing all his apostolic writings. He professes himself to be an apostle - to use his own, words - not of men, nor by man, but by Jesus Christ. Galatians 1:1 of course, any one may make a profession concerning himself; but his profession is only rendered valid by the authority of a second person. One man signs, another countersigns; one man appends his seal, another registers in the public records. No one is at once a proposer and a seconder to himself. Besides, you have read, no doubt, that many shall come, saying, I am Christ. Luke 21:8 Now if any one can pretend that he is Christ, how much more might a man profess to be an apostle of Christ! But still, for my own part, I appear in the character of a disciple and an inquirer; that so I may even thus both refute your belief, who have nothing to support it, and confound your shamelessness, who make claims without possessing the means of establishing them. Let there be a Christ, let there be an apostle, although of another god; but what matter? since they are only to draw their proofs out of the Testament of the Creator. Because even the book of Genesis so long ago promised me the Apostle Paul. For among the types and prophetic blessings which he pronounced over his sons, Jacob, when he turned his attention to Benjamin, exclaimed, Benjamin shall ravin as a wolf; in the morning he shall devour the prey, and at night he shall impart nourishment. He foresaw that Paul would arise out of the tribe of Benjamin, a voracious wolf, devouring his prey in the morning: in order words, in the early period of his life he would devastate the Lord's sheep, as a persecutor of the churches; but in the evening he would give them nourishment, which means that in his declining years he would educate the fold of Christ, as the teacher of the Gentiles. Then, again, in Saul's conduct towards David, exhibited first in violent persecution of him, and then in remorse and reparation, on his receiving from him good for evil, we have nothing else than an anticipation of Paul in Saul - belonging, too, as they did, to the same tribe - and of Jesus in David, from whom He descended according to the Virgin's genealogy. Should you, however, disapprove of these types, the Acts of the Apostles, at all events, have handed down to me this career of Paul, which you must not refuse to accept. Thence I demonstrate that from a persecutor he became an apostle, not of men, neither by man; Galatians 1:1 thence am I led to believe the Apostle himself; thence do I find reason for rejecting your defense of him, and for bearing fearlessly your taunt. Then you deny the Apostle Paul. I do not calumniate him whom I defend. I deny him, to compel you to the proof of him. I deny him, to convince you that he is mine. If you have regard to our belief you should admit the particulars which comprise it. If you challenge us to your belief, (pray) tell us what things constitute its basis. Either prove the truth of what you believe, or failing in your proof, (tell us) how you believe. Else what conduct is yours, believing in opposition to Him from whom alone comes the proof of that which you believe? Take now from my point of view the apostle, in the same manner as you have received the Christ - the apostle shown to be as much mine as the Christ is. And here, too, we will fight within the same lines, and challenge our adversary on the mere ground of a simple rule, that even an apostle who is said not to belong to the Creator - nay, is displayed as in actual hostility to the Creator - can be fairly regarded as teaching nothing, knowing nothing, wishing nothing in favour of the Creator while it would be a first principle with him to set forth another god with as much eagerness as he would use in withdrawing us from the law of the Creator. It is not at all likely that he would call men away from Judaism without showing them at the same time what was the god in whom he invited them to believe; because nobody could possibly pass from allegiance to the Creator without knowing to whom he had to cross over. For either Christ had already revealed another god - in which case the apostle's testimony would also follow to the same effect, for fear of his not being else regarded as an apostle of the god whom Christ had revealed, and because of the impropriety of his being concealed by the apostle who had been already revealed by Christ - or Christ had made no such revelation concerning God; then there was all the greater need why the apostle should reveal a God who could now be made known by no one else, and who would undoubtedly be left without any belief at all, if he were revealed not even by an apostle. We have laid down this as our first principle, because we wish at once to profess that we shall pursue the same method here in the apostle's case as we adopted before in Christ's case, to prove that he proclaimed no new god; that is, we shall draw our evidence from the epistles of St. Paul himself. Now, the garbled form in which we have found the heretic's Gospel will have already prepared us to expect to find the epistles also mutilated by him with like perverseness - and that even as respects their number. 5.3. But with regard to the countece of Peter and the rest of the apostles, he tells us that fourteen years after he went up to Jerusalem, in order to confer with them Galatians 2:1-2 about the rule which he followed in his gospel, lest perchance he should all those years have been running, and be running still, in vain, (which would be the case,) of course, if his preaching of the gospel fell short of their method. So great had been his desire to be approved and supported by those whom you wish on all occasions to be understood as in alliance with Judaism! When indeed he says, that neither was Titus circumcised, Galatians 2:3 he for the first time shows us that circumcision was the only question connected with the maintece of the law, which had been as yet agitated by those whom he therefore calls false brethren unawares brought in. Galatians 2:4 These persons went no further than to insist on a continuance of the law, retaining unquestionably a sincere belief in the Creator. They perverted the gospel in their teaching, not indeed by such a tampering with the Scripture as should enable them to expunge the Creator's Christ, but by so retaining the ancient régime as not to exclude the Creator's law. Therefore he says: Because of false brethren unawares brought in, who came in privily to spy out our liberty which we have in Christ, that they might bring us into bondage, to whom we gave place by subjection not even for an hour. Galatians 2:4-5 Let us only attend to the clear sense and to the reason of the thing, and the perversion of the Scripture will be apparent. When he first says, Neither Titus, who was with me, being a Greek, was compelled to be circumcised, and then adds, And that because of false brethren unawares brought in, Galatians 2:3-4 etc., he gives us an insight into his reason for acting in a clean contrary way, showing us wherefore he did that which he would neither have done nor shown to us, if that had not happened which induced him to act as he did. But then I want you to tell us whether they would have yielded to the subjection that was demanded, if these false brethren had not crept in to spy out their liberty? I apprehend not. They therefore gave way (in a partial concession), because there were persons whose weak faith required consideration. For their rudimentary belief, which was still in suspense about the observance of the law, deserved this concessive treatment, when even the apostle himself had some suspicion that he might have run, and be still running, in vain. Galatians 2:2 Accordingly, the false brethren who were the spies of their Christian liberty must be thwarted in their efforts to bring it under the yoke of their own Judaism before that Paul discovered whether his labour had been in vain, before that those who preceded him in the apostolate gave him their right hands of fellowship, before that he entered on the office of preaching to the Gentiles, according to their arrangement with him. He therefore made some concession, as was necessary, for a time; and this was the reason why he had Timothy circumcised, Acts 16:3 and the Nazarites introduced into the temple, Acts 21:23-26 which incidents are described in the Acts. Their truth may be inferred from their agreement with the apostle's own profession, how to the Jews he became as a Jew, that he might gain the Jews, and to them that were under the law, as under the law, - and so here with respect to those who come in secretly -and lastly, how he became all things to all men, that he might gain all. Now, inasmuch as the circumstances require such an interpretation as this, no one will refuse to admit that Paul preached that God and that Christ whose law he was excluding all the while, however much he allowed it, owing to the times, but which he would have had summarily to abolish if he had published a new god. Rightly, then, did Peter and James and John give their right hand of fellowship to Paul, and agree on such a division of their work, as that Paul should go to the heathen, and themselves to the circumcision. Galatians 2:9 Their agreement, also, to remember the poor Galatians 2:10 was in complete conformity with the law of the Creator, which cherished the poor and needy, as has been shown in our observations on your Gospel. It is thus certain that the question was one which simply regarded the law, while at the same time it is apparent what portion of the law it was convenient to have observed. Paul, however, censures Peter for not walking straightforwardly according to the truth of the gospel. No doubt he blames him; but it was solely because of his inconsistency in the matter of eating, which he varied according to the sort of persons (whom he associated with) fearing them which were of the circumcision, Galatians 2:12 but not on account of any perverse opinion touching another god. For if such a question had arisen, others also would have been resisted face to face by the man who had not even spared Peter on the comparatively small matter of his doubtful conversation. But what do the Marcionites wish to have believed (on the point)? For the rest, the apostle must (be permitted to) go on with his own statement, wherein he says that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by faith: Galatians 2:16 faith, however, in the same God to whom belongs the law also. For of course he would have bestowed no labour on severing faith from the law, when the difference of the god would, if there had only been any, have of itself produced such a severance. Justly, therefore, did he refuse to build up again (the structure of the law) which he had overthrown. The law, indeed, had to be overthrown, from the moment when John cried in the wilderness, Prepare the ways of the Lord, that valleys and hills and mountains may be filled up and levelled, and the crooked and the rough ways be made straight and smooth Luke 3:4-5 - in other words, that the difficulties of the law might be changed into the facilities of the gospel. For he remembered that the time had come of which the Psalm spoke, Let us break their bands asunder, and cast off their yoke from us; since the time when the nations became tumultuous, and the people imagined vain counsels; when the kings of the earth stood up, and the rulers were gathered together against the Lord, and against His Christ, in order that thenceforward man might be justified by the liberty of faith, not by servitude to the law, because the just shall live by his faith. Habakkuk 2:4 Now, although the prophet Habakkuk first said this, yet you have the apostle here confirming the prophets, even as Christ did. The object, therefore, of the faith whereby the just man shall live, will be that same God to whom likewise belongs the law, by doing which no man is justified. Since, then, there equally are found the curse in the law and the blessing in faith, you have both conditions set forth by the Creator: Behold, says He, I have set before you a blessing and a curse. Deuteronomy 11:26 You cannot establish a diversity of authors because there happens to be one of things; for the diversity is itself proposed by one and the same author. Why, however, Christ was made a curse for us, Galatians 3:13 is declared by the apostle himself in a way which quite helps our side, as being the result of the Creator's appointment. But yet it by no means follows, because the Creator said of old, Cursed is every one that hangs on a tree, that Christ belonged to another god, and on that account was accursed even then in the law. And how, indeed, could the Creator have cursed by anticipation one whom He knew not of? Why, however, may it not be more suitable for the Creator to have delivered His own Son to His own curse, than to have submitted Him to the malediction of that god of yours - in behalf, too, of man, who is an alien to him? Now, if this appointment of the Creator respecting His Son appears to you to be a cruel one, it is equally so in the case of your own god; if, on the contrary, it be in accordance with reason in your god, it is equally so - nay, much more so - in mine. For it would be more credible that that God had provided blessing for man, through the curse of Christ, who formerly set both a blessing and a curse before man, than that he had done so, who, according to you, never at any time pronounced either. We have received therefore, the promise of the Spirit, as the apostle says, through faith, even that faith by which the just man lives, in accordance with the Creator's purpose. What I say, then, is this, that that God is the object of faith who prefigured the grace of faith. But when he also adds, For you are all the children of faith, Galatians 3:26 it becomes clear that what the heretic's industry erased was the mention of Abraham's name; for by faith the apostle declares us to be children of Abraham, and after mentioning him he expressly called us children of faith also. But how are we children of faith? And of whose faith, if not Abraham's? For since Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness; Galatians 3:6 since, also, he deserved for that reason to be called the father of many nations, while we, who are even more like him in believing in God, are thereby justified as Abraham was, and thereby also obtain life - since the just lives by his faith - it therefore happens that, as he in the previous passage called us sons of Abraham, since he is in faith our (common) father, so here also he named us children of faith, for it was owing to his faith that it was promised that Abraham should be the father of (many) nations. As to the fact itself of his calling off faith from circumcision, did he not seek thereby to constitute us the children of Abraham, who had believed previous to his circumcision in the flesh? In short, faith in one of two gods cannot possibly admit us to the dispensation of the other, so that it should impute righteousness to those who believe in him, and make the just live through him, and declare the Gentiles to be his children through faith. Such a dispensation as this belongs wholly to Him through whose appointment it was already made known by the call of this self-same Abraham, as is conclusively shown by the natural meaning. 5.4. But, says he, I speak after the manner of men: when we were children, we were placed in bondage under the elements of the world. This, however, was not said after the manner of men. For there is no figure here, but literal truth. For (with respect to the latter clause of this passage), what child (in the sense, that is, in which the Gentiles are children) is not in bondage to the elements of the world, which he looks up to in the light of a god? With regard, however, to the former clause, there was a figure (as the apostle wrote it); because after he had said, I speak after the manner of men, he adds), Though it be but a man's covet, no man disannuls, or adds thereto. For by the figure of the permanency of a human covet he was defending the divine testament. To Abraham were the promises made, and to his seed. He said not 'to seeds,' as of many; but as of one, 'to your seed,' which is Christ. Galatians 3:16 Fie on Marcion's sponge! But indeed it is superfluous to dwell on what he has erased, when he may be more effectually confuted from that which he has retained. But when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth His Son Galatians 4:4 - the God, of course, who is the Lord of that very succession of times which constitutes an age; who also ordained, as signs of time, suns and moons and constellations and stars; who furthermore both predetermined and predicted that the revelation of His Son should be postponed to the end of the times. It shall come to pass in the last days, that the mountain (of the house) of the Lord shall be manifested; and in the last days I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh as Joel says. It was characteristic of Him (only) to wait patiently for the fullness of time, to whom belonged the end of time no less than the beginning. But as for that idle god, who has neither any work nor any prophecy, nor accordingly any time, to show for himself, what has he ever done to bring about the fullness of time, or to wait patiently its completion? If nothing, what an impotent state to have to wait for the Creator's time, in servility to the Creator! But for what end did He send His Son? To redeem them that were under the law, Galatians 4:5 in other words, to make the crooked ways straight, and the rough places smooth, as Isaiah says Isaiah 40:4 - in order that old things might pass away, and a new course begin, even the new law out of Zion, and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem, Isaiah 2:3 and that we might receive the adoption of sons, Galatians 4:5 that is, the Gentiles, who once were not sons. For He is to be the light of the Gentiles, and in His name shall the Gentiles trust. Isaiah 42:4, 6 That we may have, therefore the assurance that we are the children of God, He has sent forth His Spirit into our hearts, crying, Abba, Father. Galatians 4:6 For in the last days, says He, I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh. Now, from whom comes this grace, but from Him who proclaimed the promise thereof? Who is (our) Father, but He who is also our Maker? Therefore, after such affluence (of grace), they should not have returned to weak and beggarly elements. Galatians 4:9 By the Romans, however, the rudiments of learning are wont to be called elements. He did not therefore seek, by any depreciation of the mundane elements, to turn them away from their god, although, when he said just before, Howbeit, then, you serve them which by nature are no gods, Galatians 4:8 he censured the error of that physical or natural superstition which holds the elements to be god; but at the God of those elements he aimed not in this censure. He tells us himself clearly enough what he means by elements, even the rudiments of the law: You observe days, and months, and times, and years Galatians 4:10 - the sabbaths, I suppose, and the preparations, and the fasts, and the high days. For the cessation of even these, no less than of circumcision, was appointed by the Creator's decrees, who had said by Isaiah, Your new moons, and your sabbaths, and your high days I cannot bear; your fasting, and feasts, and ceremonies my soul hates; Isaiah 1:13-14 also by Amos, I hate, I despise your feast-days, and I will not smell in your solemn assemblies; Amos 5:21 and again by Hosea, I will cause to cease all her mirth, and her feast-days, and her sabbaths, and her new moons, and all her solemn assemblies. Hosea 2:11 The institutions which He set up Himself, you ask, did He then destroy? Yes, rather than any other. Or if another destroyed them, he only helped on the purpose of the Creator, by removing what even He had condemned. But this is not the place to discuss the question why the Creator abolished His own laws. It is enough for us to have proved that He intended such an abolition, that so it may be affirmed that the apostle determined nothing to the prejudice of the Creator, since the abolition itself proceeds from the Creator. But as, in the case of thieves, something of the stolen goods is apt to drop by the way, as a clue to their detection; so, as it seems to me, it has happened to Marcion: the last mention of Abraham's name he has left untouched (in the epistle), although no passage required his erasure more than this, even his partial alteration of the text. For (it is written) that Abraham had two sons, the one by a bond maid, the other by a free woman; but he who was of the bond maid was born after the flesh, but he of the free woman was by promise: which things are allegorized (that is to say, they presaged something besides the literal history); for these are the two covets, or the two exhibitions (of the divine plans), as we have found the word interpreted, the one from the Mount Sinai, in relation to the synagogue of the Jews, according to the law, which genders to bondage - the other genders (to liberty, being raised) above all principality, and power, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but in that which is to come, which is the mother of us all, in which we have the promise of (Christ's) holy church; by reason of which he adds in conclusion: So then, brethren, we are not children of the bond woman, but of the free. In this passage he has undoubtedly shown that Christianity had a noble birth, being sprung, as the mystery of the allegory indicates, from that son of Abraham who was born of the free woman; whereas from the son of the bond maid came the legal bondage of Judaism. Both dispensations, therefore, emanate from that same God by whom, as we have found, they were both sketched out beforehand. When he speaks of the liberty wherewith Christ has made us free, Galatians 5:1 does not the very phrase indicate that He is the Liberator who was once the Master? For Galba himself never liberated slaves which were not his own, even when about to restore free men to their liberty. By Him, therefore, will liberty be bestowed, at whose command lay the enslaving power of the law. And very properly. It was not meet that those who had received liberty should be entangled again with the yoke of bondage Galatians 5:1 - that is, of the law; now that the Psalm had its prophecy accomplished: Let us break their bands asunder, and cast away their cords from us, since the rulers have gathered themselves together against the Lord and against His Christ. All those, therefore, who had been delivered from the yoke of slavery he would earnestly have to obliterate the very mark of slavery - even circumcision, on the authority of the prophet's prediction. He remembered how that Jeremiah had said, Circumcise the foreskins of your heart; Jeremiah 4:4 as Moses likewise had enjoined, Circumcise your hard hearts Deuteronomy 10:16 - not the literal flesh. If, now, he were for excluding circumcision, as the messenger of a new god, why does he say that in Christ neither circumcision avails anything, nor uncircumcision? Galatians 5:6 For it was his duty to prefer the rival principle of that which he was abolishing, if he had a mission from the god who was the enemy of circumcision. Furthermore, since both circumcision and uncircumcision were attributed to the same Deity, both lost their power in Christ, by reason of the excellency of faith- of that faith concerning which it had been written, And in His name shall the Gentiles trust? Isaiah 42:4 - of that faith which, he says works by love. Galatians 5:6 By this saying he also shows that the Creator is the source of that grace. For whether he speaks of the love which is due to God, or that which is due to one's neighbor - in either case, the Creator's grace is meant: for it is He who enjoins the first in these words, You shall love God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength; Deuteronomy 6:5 and also the second in another passage: You shall love your neighbour as yourself. Leviticus 19:18 But he that troubles you shall have to bear judgment. Galatians 5:10 From what God? From (Marcion's) most excellent god? But he does not execute judgment. From the Creator? But neither will He condemn the maintainer of circumcision. Now, if none other but the Creator shall be found to execute judgment, it follows that only He, who has determined on the cessation of the law, shall be able to condemn the defenders of the law; and what, if he also affirms the law in that portion of it where it ought (to be permanent)? For, says he, all the law is fulfilled in you by this: 'You shall love your neighbour as yourself.' Galatians 5:14 If, indeed, he will have it that by the words it is fulfilled it is implied that the law no longer has to be fulfilled, then of course he does not mean that I should any more love my neighbour as myself, since this precept must have ceased together with the law. But no! We must evermore continue to observe this commandment. The Creator's law, therefore, has received the approval of the rival god, who has, in fact, bestowed upon it not the sentence of a summary dismissal, but the favour of a compendious acceptance; the gist of it all being concentrated in this one precept! But this condensation of the law is, in fact, only possible to Him who is the Author of it. When, therefore, he says, Bear one another's burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ, Galatians 6:2 since this cannot be accomplished except a man love his neighbour as himself, it is evident that the precept, You shall love your neighbour as yourself (which, in fact, underlies the injunction, Bear one another's burdens), is really the law of Christ, though literally the law of the Creator. Christ, therefore, is the Creator's Christ, as Christ's law is the Creator's law. You are deceived; God is not mocked. Galatians 6:7 But Marcion's god can be mocked; for he knows not how to be angry, or how to take vengeance. For whatsoever a man sows, that shall he also reap. Galatians 6:7 It is then the God of recompense and judgment who threatens this. Let us not be weary in well-doing; Galatians 6:9 and as we have opportunity, let us do good. Galatians 6:10 Deny now that the Creator has given a commandment to do good, and then a diversity of precept may argue a difference of gods. If, however, He also announces recompense, then from the same God must come the harvest both of death and of life. But in due time we shall reap; Galatians 6:9 because in Ecclesiastes it is said, For everything there will be a time. Ecclesiastes 3:17 Moreover, the world is crucified unto me, who am a servant of the Creator - the world, (I say,) but not the God who made the world - and I unto the world, Galatians 6:14 not unto the God who made the world. The world, in the apostle's sense, here means life and conversation according to worldly principles; it is in renouncing these that we and they are mutually crucified and mutually slain. He calls them persecutors of Christ. But when he adds, that he bare in his body the scars of Christ - since scars, of course, are accidents of body - he therefore expressed the truth, that the flesh of Christ is not putative, but real and substantial, the scars of which he represents as borne upon his body. 5.8. The head of every man is Christ. 1 Corinthians 11:3 What Christ, if He is not the author of man? The head he has here put for authority; now authority will accrue to none else than the author. of what man indeed is He the head? Surely of him concerning whom he adds soon afterwards: The man ought not to cover his head, forasmuch as he is the image of God. 1 Corinthians 11:7 Since then he is the image of the Creator (for He, when looking on Christ His Word, who was to become man, said, Let us make man in our own image, after our likeness Genesis 1:26), how can I possibly have another head but Him whose image I am? For if I am the image of the Creator there is no room in me for another head. But wherefore ought the woman to have power over her head, because of the angels? 1 Corinthians 11:10 If it is because she was created for the man, 1 Corinthians 11:9 and taken out of the man, according to the Creator's purpose, then in this way too has the apostle maintained the discipline of that God from whose institution he explains the reasons of His discipline. He adds: Because of the angels. 1 Corinthians 11:10 What angels? In other words, whose angels? If he means the fallen angels of the Creator, there is great propriety in his meaning. It is right that that face which was a snare to them should wear some mark of a humble guise and obscured beauty. If, however, the angels of the rival god are referred to, what fear is there for them? For not even Marcion's disciples, (to say nothing of his angels,) have any desire for women. We have often shown before now, that the apostle classes heresies as evil 1 Corinthians 11:18-19 among works of the flesh, and that he would have those persons accounted estimable who shun heresies as an evil thing. In like manner, when treating of the gospel, we have proved from the sacrament of the bread and the cup the verity of the Lord's body and blood in opposition to Marcion's phantom; while throughout almost the whole of my work it has been contended that all mention of judicial attributes points conclusively to the Creator as to a God who judges. Now, on the subject of spiritual gifts, 1 Corinthians 12:1 I have to remark that these also were promised by the Creator through Christ; and I think that we may derive from this a very just conclusion that the bestowal of a gift is not the work of a god other than Him who is proved to have given the promise. Here is a prophecy of Isaiah: There shall come forth a rod out of the stem of Jesse, and a flower shall spring up from his root; and upon Him shall rest the Spirit of the Lord. After which he enumerates the special gifts of the same: The spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and of religion. And with the fear of the Lord shall the Spirit fill Him. Isaiah 11:1-3 In this figure of a flower he shows that Christ was to arise out of the rod which sprang from the stem of Jesse; in other words, from the virgin of the race of David, the son of Jesse. In this Christ the whole substantia of the Spirit would have to rest, not meaning that it would be as it were some subsequent acquisition accruing to Him who was always, even before His incarnation, the Spirit of God; so that you cannot argue from this that the prophecy has reference to that Christ who (as mere man of the race only of David) was to obtain the Spirit of his God. (The prophet says,) on the contrary, that from the time when (the true Christ) should appear in the flesh as the flower predicted, rising from the root of Jesse, there would have to rest upon Him the entire operation of the Spirit of grace, which, so far as the Jews were concerned, would cease and come to an end. This result the case itself shows; for after this time the Spirit of the Creator never breathed among them. From Judah were taken away the wise man, and the cunning artificer, and the counsellor, and the prophet; that so it might prove true that the law and the prophets were until John. Luke 16:16 Now hear how he declared that by Christ Himself, when returned to heaven, these spiritual gifts were to be sent: He ascended up on high, that is, into heaven; He led captivity captive, meaning death or slavery of man; He gave gifts to the sons of men, that is, the gratuities, which we call charismata. He says specifically sons of men, and not men promiscuously; thus exhibiting to us those who were the children of men truly so called, choice men, apostles. For, says he, I have begotten you through the gospel; 1 Corinthians 4:15 and You are my children, of whom I travail again in birth. Galatians 4:19 Now was absolutely fulfilled that promise of the Spirit which was given by the word of Joel: In the last days will I pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh, and their sons and their daughters shall prophesy; and upon my servants and upon my handmaids will I pour out of my Spirit. Since, then, the Creator promised the gift of His Spirit in the latter days; and since Christ has in these last days appeared as the dispenser of spiritual gifts (as the apostle says, When the fullness of the time had come, God sent forth His Son; Galatians 4:4 and again, This I say, brethren, that the time is short ), it evidently follows in connection with this prediction of the last days, that this gift of the Spirit belongs to Him who is the Christ of the predicters. Now compare the Spirit's specific graces, as they are described by the apostle, and promised by the prophet Isaiah. To one is given, says he, by the Spirit the word of wisdom; this we see at once is what Isaiah declared to be the spirit of wisdom. To another, the word of knowledge; this will be the (prophet's) spirit of understanding and counsel. To another, faith by the same Spirit; this will be the spirit of religion and the fear of the Lord. To another, the gifts of healing, and to another the working of miracles; this will be the spirit of might. To another prophecy, to another discerning of spirits, to another various kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues; this will be the spirit of knowledge. See how the apostle agrees with the prophet both in making the distribution of the one Spirit, and in interpreting His special graces. This, too, I may confidently say: he who has likened the unity of our body throughout its manifold and various members to the compacting together of the various gifts of the Spirit, shows also that there is but one Lord of the human body and of the Holy Spirit. This Spirit, (according to the apostle's showing,) meant not that the service of these gifts should be in the body, nor did He place them in the human body); and on the subject of the superiority of love above all these gifts, He even taught the apostle that it was the chief commandment, just as Christ has shown it to be: You shall love the Lord with all your heart and soul, with all your strength, and with all your mind, and your neighbour as your own self. Luke 10:27 When he mentions the fact that it is written in the law, how that the Creator would speak with other tongues and other lips, while confirming indeed the gift of tongues by such a mention, he yet cannot be thought to have affirmed that the gift was that of another god by his reference to the Creator's prediction. 1 Corinthians 14:21 In precisely the same manner, when enjoining on women silence in the church, that they speak not for the mere sake of learning 1 Corinthians 14:34-35 (although that even they have the right of prophesying, he has already shown when he covers the woman that prophesies with a veil), he goes to the law for his sanction that woman should be under obedience. Now this law, let me say once for all, he ought to have made no other acquaintance with, than to destroy it. But that we may now leave the subject of spiritual gifts, facts themselves will be enough to prove which of us acts rashly in claiming them for his God, and whether it is possible that they are opposed to our side, even if the Creator promised them for His Christ who is not yet revealed, as being destined only for the Jews, to have their operations in His time, in His Christ, and among His people. Let Marcion then exhibit, as gifts of his god, some prophets, such as have not spoken by human sense, but with the Spirit of God, such as have both predicted things to come, and have made manifest the secrets of the heart; 1 Corinthians 14:25 let him produce a psalm, a vision, a prayer 1 Corinthians 14:26 - only let it be by the Spirit, in an ecstasy, that is, in a rapture, whenever an interpretation of tongues has occurred to him; let him show to me also, that any woman of boastful tongue in his community has ever prophesied from among those specially holy sisters of his. Now all these signs (of spiritual gifts) are forthcoming from my side without any difficulty, and they agree, too, with the rules, and the dispensations, and the instructions of the Creator; therefore without doubt the Christ, and the Spirit, and the apostle, belong severally to my God. Here, then, is my frank avowal for any one who cares to require it. 5.9. Meanwhile the Marcionite will exhibit nothing of this kind; he is by this time afraid to say which side has the better right to a Christ who is not yet revealed. Just as my Christ is to be expected, who was predicted from the beginning, so his Christ therefore has no existence, as not having been announced from the beginning. Ours is a better faith, which believes in a future Christ, than the heretic's, which has none at all to believe in. Touching the resurrection of the dead, 1 Corinthians 15:12 let us first inquire how some persons then denied it. No doubt in the same way in which it is even now denied, since the resurrection of the flesh has at all times men to deny it. But many wise men claim for the soul a divine nature, and are confident of its undying destiny, and even the multitude worship the dead in the presumption which they boldly entertain that their souls survive. As for our bodies, however, it is manifest that they perish either at once by fire or the wild beasts, or even when most carefully kept by length of time. When, therefore, the apostle refutes those who deny the resurrection of the flesh, he indeed defends, in opposition to them, the precise matter of their denial, that is, the resurrection of the body. You have the whole answer wrapped up in this. All the rest is superfluous. Now in this very point, which is called the resurrection of the dead, it is requisite that the proper force of the words should be accurately maintained. The word dead expresses simply what has lost the vital principle, by means of which it used to live. Now the body is that which loses life, and as the result of losing it becomes dead. To the body, therefore, the term dead is only suitable. Moreover, as resurrection accrues to what is dead, and dead is a term applicable only to a body, therefore the body alone has a resurrection incidental to it. So again the word Resurrection, or (rising again), embraces only that which has fallen down. To rise, indeed, can be predicated of that which has never fallen down, but had already been always lying down. But to rise again is predicable only of that which has fallen down; because it is by rising again, in consequence of its having fallen down, that it is said to have re-risen. For the syllable RE always implies iteration (or happening again). We say, therefore, that the body falls to the ground by death, as indeed facts themselves show, in accordance with the law of God. For to the body it was said, (Till you return to the ground, for out of it were you taken; for) dust you are, and unto dust shall you return. That, therefore, which came from the ground shall return to the ground. Now that falls down which returns to the ground; and that rises again which falls down. Since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection. 1 Corinthians 15:21 Here in the word man, who consists of bodily substance, as we have often shown already, is presented to me the body of Christ. But if we are all so made alive in Christ, as we die in Adam, it follows of necessity that we are made alive in Christ as a bodily substance, since we died in Adam as a bodily substance. The similarity, indeed, is not complete, unless our revival in Christ concur in identity of substance with our mortality in Adam. But at this point (the apostle) has made a parenthetical statement concerning Christ, which, bearing as it does on our present discussion, must not pass unnoticed. For the resurrection of the body will receive all the better proof, in proportion as I shall succeed in showing that Christ belongs to that God who is believed to have provided this resurrection of the flesh in His dispensation. When he says, For He must reign, till He has put all enemies under His feet, we can see at once from this statement that he speaks of a God of vengeance, and therefore of Him who made the following promise to Christ: Sit at my right hand, until I make Your enemies Your footstool. The rod of Your strength shall the Lord send forth from Sion, and He shall rule along with You in the midst of Your enemies. It is necessary for me to lay claim to those Scriptures which the Jews endeavour to deprive us of, and to show that they sustain my view. Now they say that this Psalm was a chant in honour of Hezekiah, because he went up to the house of the Lord, and God turned back and removed his enemies. Therefore, (as they further hold,) those other words, Before the morning star did I beget you from the womb, are applicable to Hezekiah, and to the birth of Hezekiah. We on our side have published Gospels (to the credibility of which we have to thank them for having given some confirmation, indeed, already in so great a subject ); and these declare that the Lord was born at night, that so it might be before the morning star, as is evident both from the star especially, and from the testimony of the angel, who at night announced to the shepherds that Christ had at that moment been born, and again from the place of the birth, for it is towards night that persons arrive at the (eastern) inn. Perhaps, too, there was a mystic purpose in Christ's being born at night, destined, as He was, to be the light of the truth amidst the dark shadows of ignorance. Nor, again, would God have said, I have begotten You, except to His true Son. For although He says of all the people (Israel), I have begotten children, Isaiah 1:2 yet He added not from the womb. Now, why should He have added so superfluously this phrase from the womb (as if there could be any doubt about any one's having been born from the womb), unless the Holy Ghost had wished the words to be with special care understood of Christ? I have begotten You from the womb, that is to say, from a womb only, without a man's seed, making it a condition of a fleshly body that it should come out of a womb. What is here added (in the Psalm), You are a priest for ever, relates to (Christ) Himself. Hezekiah was no priest; and even if he had been one, he would not have been a priest for ever. After the order, says He, of Melchizedek. Now what had Hezekiah to do with Melchizedek, the priest of the most high God, and him uncircumcised too, who blessed the circumcised Abraham, after receiving from him the offering of tithes? To Christ, however, the order of Melchizedek will be very suitable; for Christ is the proper and legitimate High Priest of God. He is the Pontiff of the priesthood of the uncircumcision, constituted such, even then, for the Gentiles, by whom He was to be more fully received, although at His last coming He will favour with His acceptance and blessing the circumcision also, even the race of Abraham, which by and by is to acknowledge Him. Well, then, there is also another Psalm, which begins with these words: Give Your judgments, O God, to the King, that is, to Christ who was to come as King, and Your righteousness unto the King's son, that is, to Christ's people; for His sons are they who are born again in Him. But it will here be said that this Psalm has reference to Solomon. However, will not those portions of the Psalm which apply to Christ alone, be enough to teach us that all the rest, too, relates to Christ, and not to Solomon? He shall come down, says He, like rain upon a fleece, and like dropping showers upon the earth, describing His descent from heaven to the flesh as gentle and unobserved. Solomon, however, if he had indeed any descent at all, came not down like a shower, because he descended not from heaven. But I will set before you more literal points. He shall have dominion, says the Psalmist, from sea to sea, and from the river unto the ends of the earth. To Christ alone was this given; while Solomon reigned over only the moderately-sized kingdom of Judah. Yea, all kings shall fall down before Him. Whom, indeed, shall they all thus worship, except Christ? All nations shall serve Him. To whom shall all thus do homage, but Christ? His name shall endure forever. Whose name has this eternity of fame, but Christ's? Longer than the sun shall His name remain, for longer than the sun shall be the Word of God, even Christ. And in Him shall all nations be blessed. In Solomon was no nation blessed; in Christ every nation. And what if the Psalm proves Him to be even God? They shall call Him blessed. (On what ground?) Because blessed is the Lord God of Israel, who only does wonderful things. Blessed also is His glorious name, and with His glory shall all the earth be filled. On the contrary, Solomon (as I make bold to affirm) lost even the glory which he had from God, seduced by his love of women even into idolatry. And thus, the statement which occurs in about the middle of this Psalm, His enemies shall lick the dust (of course, as having been, (to use the apostle's phrase,) put under His feet ), will bear upon the very object which I had in view, when I both introduced the Psalm, and insisted on my opinion of its sense - namely, that I might demonstrate both the glory of His kingdom and the subjection of His enemies in pursuance of the Creator's own plans, with the view of laying down this conclusion, that none but He can be believed to be the Christ of the Creator. 5.11. If, owing to the fault of human error, the word God has become a common name (since in the world there are said and believed to be gods many 1 Corinthians 8:5), yet the blessed God, (who is the Father) of our Lord Jesus Christ, 2 Corinthians 1:3 will be understood to be no other God than the Creator, who both blessed all things (that He had made), as you find in Genesis, Genesis 1:22 and is Himself blessed by all things, as Daniel tells us. Now, if the title of Father may be claimed for (Marcion's) sterile god, how much more for the Creator? To none other than Him is it suitable, who is also the Father of mercies, 2 Corinthians 1:3 and (in the prophets) has been described as full of compassion, and gracious, and plenteous in mercy. In Jonah you find the signal act of His mercy, which He showed to the praying Ninevites. Jonah 3:8 How inflexible was He at the tears of Hezekiah! How ready to forgive Ahab, the husband of Jezebel, the blood of Naboth, when he deprecated His anger. How prompt in pardoning David on his confession of his sin 2 Samuel 12:13 - preferring, indeed, the sinner's repentance to his death, of course because of His gracious attribute of mercy. Ezekiel 33:11 Now, if Marcion's god has exhibited or proclaimed any such thing as this, I will allow him to be the Father of mercies. Since, however, he ascribes to him this title only from the time he has been revealed, as if he were the father of mercies from the time only when he began to liberate the human race, then we on our side, too, adopt the same precise date of his alleged revelation; but it is that we may deny him! It is then not competent to him to ascribe any quality to his god, whom indeed he only promulged by the fact of such an ascription; for only if it were previously evident that his god had an existence, could he be permitted to ascribe an attribute to him. The ascribed attribute is only an accident; but accidents are preceded by the statement of the thing itself of which they are predicated, especially when another claims the attribute which is ascribed to him who has not been previously shown to exist. Our denial of his existence will be all the more peremptory, because of the fact that the attribute which is alleged in proof of it belongs to that God who has been already revealed. Therefore the New Testament will appertain to none other than Him who promised it - if not its letter, yet its spirit; 2 Corinthians 3:6 and herein will lie its newness. Indeed, He who had engraved its letter in stones is the same as He who had said of its spirit, I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh. Joel 2:28 Even if the letter kills, yet the Spirit gives life; 2 Corinthians 3:6 and both belong to Him who says: I kill, and I make alive; I wound, and I heal. Deuteronomy 32:39 We have already made good the Creator's claim to this twofold character of judgment and goodness - killing in the letter through the law, and quickening in the Spirit through the Gospel. Now these attributes, however different they be, cannot possibly make two gods; for they have already (in the prevenient dispensation of the Old Testament) been found to meet in One. He alludes to Moses' veil, covered with which his face could not be steadfastly seen by the children of Israel. 2 Corinthians 3:7, 13 Since he did this to maintain the superiority of the glory of the New Testament, which is permanent in its glory, over that of the Old, which was to be done away, 2 Corinthians 3:7-8 this fact gives support to my belief which exalts the Gospel above the law and you must look well to it that it does not even more than this. For only there is superiority possible where was previously the thing over which superiority can be affirmed. But then he says, But their minds were blinded - of the world; certainly not the Creator's mind, but the minds of the people which are in the world. of Israel he says, Even unto this day the same veil is upon their heart; 2 Corinthians 3:15 showing that the veil which was on the face of Moses was a figure of the veil which is on the heart of the nation still; because even now Moses is not seen by them in heart, just as he was not then seen by them in eye. But what concern has Paul with the veil which still obscures Moses from their view, if the Christ of the Creator, whom Moses predicted, is not yet come? How are the hearts of the Jews represented as still covered and veiled, if the predictions of Moses relating to Christ, in whom it was their duty to believe through him, are as yet unfulfilled? What had the apostle of a strange Christ to complain of, if the Jews failed in understanding the mysterious announcements of their own God, unless the veil which was upon their hearts had reference to that blindness which concealed from their eyes the Christ of Moses? Then, again, the words which follow, But when it shall turn to the Lord, the evil shall be taken away, 2 Corinthians 3:16 properly refer to the Jew, over whose gaze Moses' veil is spread, to the effect that, when he is turned to the faith of Christ, he will understand how Moses spoke of Christ. But how shall the veil of the Creator be taken away by the Christ of another god, whose mysteries the Creator could not possibly have veiled - unknown mysteries, as they were of an unknown god? So he says that we now with open face (meaning the candour of the heart, which in the Jews had been covered with a veil), beholding Christ, are changed into the same image, from that glory (wherewith Moses was transfigured as by the glory of the Lord) to another glory. 2 Corinthians 3:18 By thus setting forth the glory which illumined the person of Moses from his interview with God, and the veil which concealed the same from the infirmity of the people, and by superinducing thereupon the revelation and the glory of the Spirit in the person of Christ - even as, to use his words, by the Spirit of the Lord - he testifies that the whole Mosaic system was a figure of Christ, of whom the Jews indeed were ignorant, but who is known to us Christians. We are quite aware that some passages are open to ambiguity, from the way in which they are read, or else from their punctuation, when there is room for these two causes of ambiguity. The latter method has been adopted by Marcion, by reading the passage which follows, in whom the God of this world, 2 Corinthians 4:4 as if it described the Creator as the God of this world, in order that he may, by these words, imply that there is another God for the other world. We, however, say that the passage ought to be punctuated with a comma after God, to this effect: In whom God has blinded the eyes of the unbelievers of this world. In whom means the Jewish unbelievers, from some of whom the gospel is still hidden under Moses' veil. Now it is these whom God had threatened for loving Him indeed with the lip, while their heart was far from Him, Isaiah 29:13 in these angry words: You shall hear with your ears, and not understand; and see with your eyes, but not perceive; and, If you will not believe, you shall not understand; and again, I will take away the wisdom of their wise men, and bring to nought the understanding of their prudent ones. But these words, of course, He did not pronounce against them for concealing the gospel of the unknown God. At any rate, if there is a God of this world, He blinds the heart of the unbelievers of this world, because they have not of their own accord recognised His Christ, who ought to be understood from His Scriptures. Content with my advantage, I can willingly refrain from noticing to any greater length this point of ambiguous punctuation, so as not to give my adversary any advantage, indeed, I might have wholly omitted the discussion. A simpler answer I shall find ready to hand in interpreting the god of this world of the devil, who once said, as the prophet describes him: I will be like the Most High; I will exalt my throne in the clouds. Isaiah 14:14 The whole superstition, indeed, of this world has got into his hands, so that he blinds effectually the hearts of unbelievers, and of none more than the apostate Marcion's. Now he did not observe how much this clause of the sentence made against him: For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, has shined in our hearts, to (give) the light of the knowledge (of His glory) in the face of (Jesus) Christ. 2 Corinthians 4:6 Now who was it that said; Let there be light? Genesis 1:3 And who was it that said to Christ concerning giving light to the world: I have set You as a light to the Gentiles - to them, that is, who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death? (None else, surely, than He), to whom the Spirit in the Psalm answers, in His foresight of the future, saying, The light of Your countece, O Lord, has been displayed upon us. Now the countece (or person ) of the Lord here is Christ. Wherefore the apostle said above: Christ, who is the image of God. 2 Corinthians 4:4 Since Christ, then, is the person of the Creator, who said, Let there be light, it follows that Christ and the apostles, and the gospel, and the veil, and Moses- nay, the whole of the dispensations - belong to the God who is the Creator of this world, according to the testimony of the clause (above adverted to), and certainly not to him who never said, Let there be light. I here pass over discussion about another epistle, which we hold to have been written to the Ephesians, but the heretics to the Laodiceans. In it he tells them to remember, that at the time when they were Gentiles they were without Christ, aliens from (the commonwealth of) Israel, without intercourse, without the covets and any hope of promise, nay, without God, even in his own world, Ephesians 2:12 as the Creator thereof. Since therefore he said, that the Gentiles were without God, while their god was the devil, not the Creator, it is clear that he must be understood to be the lord of this world, whom the Gentiles received as their god - not the Creator, of whom they were in ignorance. But how does it happen, that the treasure which we have in these earthen vessels of ours 2 Corinthians 4:7 should not be regarded as belonging to the God who owns the vessels? Now since God's glory is, that so great a treasure is contained in earthen vessels, and since these earthen vessels are of the Creator's make, it follows that the glory is the Creator's; nay, since these vessels of His smack so much of the excellency of the power of God, that power itself must be His also! Indeed, all these things have been consigned to the said earthen vessels for the very purpose that His excellence might be manifested forth. Henceforth, then, the rival god will have no claim to the glory, and consequently none to the power. Rather, dishonour and weakness will accrue to him, because the earthen vessels with which he had nothing to do have received all the excellency! Well, then, if it be in these very earthen vessels that he tells us we have to endure so great sufferings, 2 Corinthians 4:8-12 in which we bear about with us the very dying of God, (Marcion's) god is really ungrateful and unjust, if he does not mean to restore this same substance of ours at the resurrection, wherein so much has been endured in loyalty to him, in which Christ's very death is borne about, wherein too the excellency of his power is treasured. 2 Corinthians 4:10 For he gives prominence to the statement, That the life also of Christ may be manifested in our body, 2 Corinthians 4:10 as a contrast to the preceding, that His death is borne about in our body. Now of what life of Christ does he here speak? of that which we are now living? Then how is it, that in the words which follow he exhorts us not to the things which are seen and are temporal, but to those which are not seen and are eternal 2 Corinthians 4:16-18 - in other words, not to the present, but to the future? But if it be of the future life of Christ that he speaks, intimating that it is to be made manifest in our body, 2 Corinthians 4:11 then he has clearly predicted the resurrection of the flesh. 2 Corinthians 4:14 He says, too, that our outward man perishes, 2 Corinthians 4:16 not meaning by an eternal perdition after death, but by labours and sufferings, in reference to which he previously said, For which cause we will not faint. 2 Corinthians 4:16 Now, when he adds of the inward man also, that it is renewed day by day, he demonstrates both issues here - the wasting away of the body by the wear and tear of its trials, and the renewal of the soul by its contemplation of the promises. 5.12. As to the house of this our earthly dwelling-place, when he says that we have an eternal home in heaven, not made with hands, 2 Corinthians 5:1 he by no means would imply that, because it was built by the Creator's hand, it must perish in a perpetual dissolution after death. He treats of this subject in order to offer consolation against the fear of death and the dread of this very dissolution, as is even more manifest from what follows, when he adds, that in this tabernacle of our earthly body we do groan, earnestly desiring to be clothed upon with the vesture which is from heaven, 2 Corinthians 5:2-3 if so be, that having been unclothed, we shall not be found naked; in other words, shall regain that of which we have been divested, even our body. And again he says: We that are in this tabernacle do groan, not as if we were oppressed with an unwillingness to be unclothed, but (we wish) to be clothed upon. 2 Corinthians 5:4 He here says expressly, what he touched but lightly in his first epistle, where he wrote:) The dead shall be raised incorruptible (meaning those who had undergone mortality), and we shall be changed (whom God shall find to be yet in the flesh). 1 Corinthians 15:52 Both those shall be raised incorruptible, because they shall regain their body - and that a renewed one, from which shall come their incorruptibility; and these also shall, in the crisis of the last moment, and from their instantaneous death, while encountering the oppressions of anti-christ, undergo a change, obtaining therein not so much a divestiture of body as a clothing upon with the vesture which is from heaven. So that while these shall put on over their (changed) body this, heavenly raiment, the dead also shall for their part recover their body, over which they too have a supervesture to put on, even the incorruption of heaven; because of these it was that he said: This corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. 1 Corinthians 15:53 The one put on this (heavenly) apparel, when they recover their bodies; the others put it on as a supervesture, when they indeed hardly lose them (in the suddenness of their change). It was accordingly not without good reason that he described them as not wishing indeed to be unclothed, but (rather as wanting) to be clothed upon; 2 Corinthians 5:4 in other words, as wishing not to undergo death, but to be surprised into life, that this moral (body) might be swallowed up of life, by being rescued from death in the supervesture of its changed state. This is why he shows us how much better it is for us not to be sorry, if we should be surprised by death, and tells us that we even hold of God the earnest of His Spirit 2 Corinthians 5:5 (pledged as it were thereby to have the clothing upon, which is the object of our hope), and that so long as we are in the flesh, we are absent from the Lord; 2 Corinthians 5:6 moreover, that we ought on this account to prefer rather to be absent from the body and to be present with the Lord, 2 Corinthians 5:8 and so to be ready to meet even death with joy. In this view it is that he informs us how we must all appear before the judgement-seat of Christ, that every one may receive the things done in his body, according as he has done either good or bad. 2 Corinthians 5:10 Since, however, there is then to be a retribution according to men's merits, how will any be able to reckon with God? But by mentioning both the judgment-seat and the distinction between works good and bad, he sets before us a Judge who is to award both sentences, 2 Corinthians 5:10 and has thereby affirmed that all will have to be present at the tribunal in their bodies. For it will be impossible to pass sentence except on the body, for what has been done in the body. God would be unjust, if any one were not punished or else rewarded in that very condition, wherein the merit was itself achieved. If therefore any man be in Christ, he is a new creature; old things are passed away; behold, all things have become new; 2 Corinthians 5:17 and so is accomplished the prophecy of Isaiah. Isaiah 43:19 When also he (in a later passage) enjoins us to cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of flesh and blood (since this substance enters not the kingdom of God 1 Corinthians 15:50); when, again, he espouses the church as a chaste virgin to Christ, 2 Corinthians 11:2 a spouse to a spouse in very deed, an image cannot be combined and compared with what is opposed to the real nature of the thing (with which it is compared). So when he designates false apostles, deceitful workers transforming themselves into likenesses of himself, 2 Corinthians 11:13 of course by their hypocrisy, he charges them with the guilt of disorderly conversation, rather than of false doctrine. The contrariety, therefore, was one of conduct, not of gods. If Satan himself, too, is transformed into an angel of light, 2 Corinthians 11:14 such an assertion must not be used to the prejudice of the Creator. The Creator is not an angel, but God. Into a god of light, and not an angel of light, must Satan then have been said to be transformed, if he did not mean to call him the angel, which both we and Marcion know him to be. On Paradise is the title of a treatise of ours, in which is discussed all that the subject admits of. I shall here simply wonder, in connection with this matter, whether a god who has no dispensation of any kind on earth could possibly have a paradise to call his own - without perchance availing himself of the paradise of the Creator, to use it as he does His world - much in the character of a mendicant. And yet of the removal of a man from earth to heaven we have an instance afforded us by the Creator in Elijah. 2 Kings 2:11 But what will excite my surprise still more is the case (next supposed by Marcion), that a God so good and gracious, and so averse to blows and cruelty, should have suborned the angel Satan- not his own either, but the Creator's - to buffet the apostle, 2 Corinthians 12:7-8 and then to have refused his request, when thrice entreated to liberate him! It would seem, therefore, that Marcion's god imitates the Creator's conduct, who is an enemy to the proud, even putting down the mighty from their seats. Is he then the same God as He who gave Satan power over the person of Job that his strength might be made perfect in weakness? How is it that the censurer of the Galatians Galatians 1:6-9 still retains the very formula of the law: In the mouth of two or three witnesses shall every word be established? 2 Corinthians 13:1 How again is it that he threatens sinners that he will not spare them 2 Corinthians 13:2 - he, the preacher of a most gentle god? Yea, he even declares that the Lord has given to him the power of using sharpness in their presence! 2 Corinthians 13:10 Deny now, O heretic, (at your cost,) that your god is an object to be feared, when his apostle was for making himself so formidable! 5.13. Since my little work is approaching its termination, I must treat but briefly the points which still occur, while those which have so often turned up must be put aside. I regret still to have to contend about the law - after I have so often proved that its replacement (by the gospel) affords no argument for another god, predicted as it was indeed in Christ, and in the Creator's own plans ordained for His Christ. (But I must revert to that discussion) so far as (the apostle leads me, for) this very epistle looks very much as if it abrogated the law. We have, however, often shown before now that God is declared by the apostle to be a Judge; and that in the Judge is implied an Avenger; and in the Avenger, the Creator. And so in the passage where he says: I am not ashamed of the gospel (of Christ): for it is the power of god unto salvation to every one that believes; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek; for therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith, Romans 1:16-17 he undoubtedly ascribes both the gospel and salvation to Him whom (in accordance with our heretic's own distinction) I have called the just God, not the good one. It is He who removes (men) from confidence in the law to faith in the gospel - that is to say, His own law and His own gospel. When, again, he declares that the wrath (of God) is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness, Romans 1:18 (I ask) the wrath of what God? of the Creator certainly. The truth, therefore, will be His, whose is also the wrath, which has to be revealed to avenge the truth. Likewise, when adding, We are sure that the judgment of God is according to truth, Romans 2:2 he both vindicated that wrath from which comes this judgment for the truth, and at the same time afforded another proof that the truth emanates from the same God whose wrath he attested, by witnessing to His judgment. Marcion's averment is quite a different matter, that the Creator in anger avenges Himself on the truth of the rival god which had been detained in unrighteousness. But what serious gaps Marcion has made in this epistle especially, by withdrawing whole passages at his will, will be clear from the unmutilated text of our own copy. It is enough for my purpose to accept in evidence of its truth what he has seen fit to leave unerased, strange instances as they are also of his negligence and blindness. If, then, God will judge the secrets of men - both of those who have sinned in the law, and of those who have sinned without law (inasmuch as they who know not the law yet do by nature the things contained in the law) Romans 2:12-16 - surely the God who shall judge is He to whom belong both the law, and that nature which is the rule to them who know not the law. But how will He conduct this judgment? According to my gospel, says (the apostle), by (Jesus) Christ. Romans 2:16 So that both the gospel and Christ must be His, to whom appertain the law and the nature which are to be vindicated by the gospel and Christ - even at that judgment of God which, as he previously said, was to be according to truth. Romans 2:2 The wrath, therefore, which is to vindicate truth, can only be revealed from heaven by the God of wrath; Romans 1:18 so that this sentence, which is quite in accordance with that previous one wherein the judgment is declared to be the Creator's, cannot possibly be ascribed to another god who is not a judge, and is incapable of wrath. It is only consistent in Him among whose attributes are found the judgment and the wrath of which I am speaking, and to whom of necessity must also appertain the media whereby these attributes are to be carried into effect, even the gospel and Christ. Hence his invective against the transgressors of the law, who teach that men should not steal, and yet practise theft themselves. Romans 2:21 (This invective he utters) in perfect homage to the law of God, not as if he meant to censure the Creator Himself with having commanded Exodus 3:22 a fraud to be practised against the Egyptians to get their gold and silver at the very time when He was forbidding men to steal, - adopting such methods as they are apt (shamelessly) to charge upon Him in other particulars also. Are we then to suppose that the apostle abstained through fear from openly calumniating God, from whom notwithstanding He did not hesitate to withdraw men? Well, but he had gone so far in his censure of the Jews, as to point against them the denunciation of the prophet, Through you the name of God is blasphemed (among the Gentiles). Romans 2:24 But how absurd, that he should himself blaspheme Him for blaspheming whom he upbraids them as evil-doers! He prefers even circumcision of heart to neglect of it in the flesh. Now it is quite within the purpose of the God of the law that circumcision should be that of the heart, not in the flesh; in the spirit, and not in the letter. Romans 2:29 Since this is the circumcision recommended by Jeremiah: Circumcise (yourselves to the Lord, and take away) the foreskins of your heart; Jeremiah 4:4 and even of Moses: Circumcise, therefore, the hardness of your heart, - the Spirit which circumcises the heart will proceed from Him who prescribed the letter also which clips the flesh; and the Jew which is one inwardly will be a subject of the self-same God as he also is who is a Jew outwardly; Romans 2:28 because the apostle would have preferred not to have mentioned a Jew at all, unless he were a servant of the God of the Jews. It was once the law; now it is the righteousness of God which is by the faith of (Jesus) Christ. Romans 3:21-22 What means this distinction? Has your god been subserving the interests of the Creator's dispensation, by affording time to Him and to His law? Is the Now in the hands of Him to whom belonged the Then? Surely, then, the law was His, whose is now the righteousness of God. It is a distinction of dispensations, not of gods. He enjoins those who are justified by faith in Christ and not by the law to have peace with God. With what God? Him whose enemies we have never, in any dispensation, been? Or Him against whom we have rebelled, both in relation to His written law and His law of nature? Now, as peace is only possible towards Him with whom there once was war, we shall be both justified by Him, and to Him also will belong the Christ, in whom we are justified by faith, and through whom alone God's enemies can ever be reduced to peace. Moreover, says he, the law entered, that the offense might abound. Romans 5:20 And wherefore this? In order, he says, that (where sin abounded), grace might much more abound. Romans 5:20 Whose grace, if not of that God from whom also came the law? Unless it be, forsooth, that the Creator intercalated His law for the mere purpose of producing some employment for the grace of a rival god, an enemy to Himself (I had almost said, a god unknown to Him), that as sin had in His own dispensation reigned unto death, even so might grace reign through righteousness unto (eternal) life by Jesus Christ, Romans 5:21 His own antagonist! For this (I suppose it was, that) the law of the Creator had concluded all under sin, Galatians 3:22 and had brought in all the world as guilty (before God), and had stopped every mouth, Romans 3:19 so that none could glory through it, in order that grace might be maintained to the glory of the Christ, not of the Creator, but of Marcion! I may here anticipate a remark about the substance of Christ, in the prospect of a question which will now turn up. For he says that we are dead to the law. It may be contended that Christ's body is indeed a body, but not exactly flesh. Now, whatever may be the substance, since he mentions the body of Christ, whom he immediately after states to have been raised from the dead, Romans 7:4 none other body can be understood than that of the flesh, in respect of which the law was called (the law) of death. But, behold, he bears testimony to the law, and excuses it on the ground of sin: What shall we say, therefore? Is the law sin? God forbid. Romans 7:7 Fie on you, Marcion. God forbid! (See how) the apostle recoils from all impeachment of the law. I, however, have no acquaintance with sin except through the law. But how high an encomium of the law (do we obtain) from this fact, that by it there comes to light the latent presence of sin! It was not the law, therefore, which led me astray, but sin, taking occasion by the commandment. Romans 7:8 Why then do you, (O Marcion,) impute to the God of the law what His apostle dares not impute even to the law itself? Nay, he adds a climax: The law is holy, and its commandment just and good. Romans 7:13 Now if he thus reverences the Creator's law, I am at a loss to know how he can destroy the Creator Himself. Who can draw a distinction, and say that there are two gods, one just and the other good, when He ought to be believed to be both one and the other, whose commandment is both just and good? Then, again, when affirming the law to be spiritual Romans 7:14 he thereby implies that it is prophetic, and that it is figurative. Now from even this circumstance I am bound to conclude that Christ was predicted by the law but figuratively, so that indeed He could not be recognised by all the Jews. 5.14. If the Father sent His Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, Romans 8:3 it must not therefore be said that the flesh which He seemed to have was but a phantom. For he in a previous verse ascribed sin to the flesh, and made it out to be the law of sin dwelling in his members, and warring against the law of the mind. On this account, therefore, (does he mean to say that) the Son was sent in the likeness of sinful flesh, that He might redeem this sinful flesh by a like substance, even a fleshly one, which bare a resemblance to sinful flesh, although it was itself free from sin. Now this will be the very perfection of divine power to effect the salvation (of man) in a nature like his own. For it would be no great matter if the Spirit of God remedied the flesh; but when a flesh, which is the very copy of the sinning substance - itself flesh also - only without sin, (effects the remedy, then doubtless it is a great thing). The likeness, therefore, will have reference to the quality of the sinfulness, and not to any falsity of the substance. Because he would not have added the attribute sinful, if he meant the likeness to be so predicated of the substance as to deny the verity thereof; in that case he would only have used the word flesh, and omitted the sinful. But inasmuch as he has put the two together, and said sinful flesh, (or flesh of sin,) he has both affirmed the substance, that is, the flesh and referred the likeness to the fault of the substance, that is, to its sin. But even suppose that the likeness was predicated of the substance, the truth of the said substance will not be thereby denied. Why then call the true substance like? Because it is indeed true, only not of a seed of like condition with our own; but true still, as being of a nature not really unlike ours. And again, in contrary things there is no likeness. Thus the likeness of flesh would not be called spirit, because flesh is not susceptible of any likeness to spirit; but it would be called phantom, if it seemed to be that which it really was not. It is, however, called likeness, since it is what it seems to be. Now it is (what it seems to be), because it is on a par with the other thing (with which it is compared). But a phantom, which is merely such and nothing else, is not a likeness. The apostle, however, himself here comes to our aid; for, while explaining in what sense he would not have us live in the flesh, although in the flesh - even by not living in the works of the flesh - he shows that when he wrote the words, Flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God, 1 Corinthians 15:50 it was not with the view of condemning the substance (of the flesh), but the works thereof; and because it is possible for these not to be committed by us while we are still in the flesh, they will therefore be properly chargeable, not on the substance of the flesh, but on its conduct. Likewise, if the body indeed is dead because of sin (from which statement we see that not the death of the soul is meant, but that of the body), but the spirit is life because of righteousness, Romans 8:10 it follows that this life accrues to that which incurred death because of sin, that is, as we have just seen, the body. Now the body is only restored to him who had lost it; so that the resurrection of the dead implies the resurrection of their bodies. He accordingly subjoins: He that raised up Christ from the dead, shall also quicken your mortal bodies. Romans 8:11 In these words he both affirmed the resurrection of the flesh (without which nothing can rightly be called body, nor can anything be properly regarded as mortal), and proved the bodily substance of Christ; inasmuch as our own mortal bodies will be quickened in precisely the same way as He was raised; and that was in no other way than in the body. I have here a very wide gulf of expunged Scripture to leap across; however, I alight on the place where the apostle bears record of Israel that they have a zeal of God - their own God, of course - but not according to knowledge. For, says he, being ignorant of (the righteousness of) God, and going about to establish their own righteousness, they have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God; for Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believes. Romans 10:2-4 Hereupon we shall be confronted with an argument of the heretic, that the Jews were ignorant of the superior God, since, in opposition to him, they set up their own righteousness - that is, the righteousness of their law - not receiving Christ, the end (or finisher) of the law. But how then is it that he bears testimony to their zeal for their own God, if it is not in respect of the same God that he upbraids them for their ignorance? They were affected indeed with zeal for God, but it was not an intelligent zeal: they were, in fact, ignorant of Him, because they were ignorant of His dispensations by Christ, who was to bring about the consummation of the law; and in this way did they maintain their own righteousness in opposition to Him. But so does the Creator Himself testify to their ignorance concerning Him: Israel has not known me; my people have not understood me; Isaiah 1:3 and as to their preferring the establishment of their own righteousness, (the Creator again describes them as) teaching for doctrines the commandments of men; moreover, as having gathered themselves together against the Lord and against His Christ - from ignorance of Him, of course. Now nothing can be expounded of another god which is applicable to the Creator; otherwise the apostle would not have been just in reproaching the Jews with ignorance in respect of a god of whom they knew nothing. For where had been their sin, if they only maintained the righteousness of their own God against one of whom they were ignorant? But he exclaims: O the depth of the riches and the wisdom of God; how unsearchable also are His ways! Romans 11:33 Whence this outburst of feeling? Surely from the recollection of the Scriptures, which he had been previously turning over, as well as from his contemplation of the mysteries which he had been setting forth above, in relation to the faith of Christ coming from the law. If Marcion had an object in his erasures, why does his apostle utter such an exclamation, because his god has no riches for him to contemplate? So poor and indigent was he, that he created nothing, predicted nothing - in short, possessed nothing; for it was into the world of another God that he descended. The truth is, the Creator's resources and riches, which once had been hidden, were now disclosed. For so had He promised: I will give to them treasures which have been hidden, and which men have not seen will I open to them. Isaiah 45:3 Hence, then, came the exclamation, O the depth of the riches and the wisdom of God! For His treasures were now opening out. This is the purport of what Isaiah said, and of (the apostle's own) subsequent quotation of the self-same passage, of the prophet: Who has known the mind of the Lord? Or who has been His counsellor? Who has first given to Him, and it shall be recompensed to him again? Now, (Marcion,) since you have expunged so much from the Scriptures, why did you retain these words, as if they too were not the Creator's words? But come now, let us see without mistake the precepts of your new god: Abhor that which is evil, and cleave to that which is good. Romans 12:9 Well, is the precept different in the Creator's teaching? Take away the evil from you, depart from it, and be doing good. Then again: Be kindly affectioned one to another with brotherly love. Romans 12:10 Now is not this of the same import as: You shall love your neighbour as your self? Leviticus 19:18 (Again, your apostle says:) Rejoicing in hope; Romans 12:12 that is, of God. So says the Creator's Psalmist: It is better to hope in the Lord, than to hope even in princes. Patient in tribulation. Romans 12:12 You have (this in) the Psalm: The Lord hear you in the day of tribulation. Bless, and curse not, Romans 12:12 (says your apostle.) But what better teacher of this will you find than Him who created all things, and blessed them? Mind not high things, but condescend to men of low estate. Be not wise in your own conceits. Romans 12:16 For against such a disposition Isaiah pronounces a woe. Isaiah 5:21 Recompense to no man evil for evil. Romans 12:17 (Like unto which is the Creator's precept:) You shall not remember your brother's evil against you. Leviticus 19:17-18 (Again:) Avenge not yourselves; Romans 12:19 for it is written, Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord. Live peaceably with all men. Romans 12:18 The retaliation of the law, therefore, permitted not retribution for an injury; it rather repressed any attempt thereat by the fear of a recompense. Very properly, then, did he sum up the entire teaching of the Creator in this precept of His: You shall love your neighbour as yourself. Romans 13:9 Now, if this is the recapitulation of the law from the very law itself, I am at a loss to know who is the God of the law. I fear He must be Marcion's god (after all). If also the gospel of Christ is fulfilled in this same precept, but not the Creator's Christ, what is the use of our contending any longer whether Christ did or did not say, I am not come to destroy the law, but to fulfil it? Matthew 5:17 In vain has (our man of) Pontus laboured to deny this statement. If the gospel has not fulfilled the law, then all I can say is, the law has fulfilled the gospel. But it is well that in a later verse he threatens us with the judgment-seat of Christ,- the Judge, of course, and the Avenger, and therefore the Creator's (Christ). This Creator, too, however much he may preach up another god, he certainly sets forth for us as a Being to be served, if he holds Him thus up as an object to be feared. 5.17. We have it on the true tradition of the Church, that this epistle was sent to the Ephesians, not to the Laodiceans. Marcion, however, was very desirous of giving it the new title (of Laodicean), as if he were extremely accurate in investigating such a point. But of what consequence are the titles, since in writing to a certain church the apostle did in fact write to all? It is certain that, whoever they were to whom he wrote, he declared Him to be God in Christ with whom all things agree which are predicted. Now, to what god will most suitably belong all those things which relate to that good pleasure, which God has purposed in the mystery of His will, that in the dispensation of the fullness of times He might recapitulate (if I may so say, according to the exact meaning of the Greek word ) all things in Christ, both which are in heaven and which are on earth, Ephesians 1:9-10 but to Him whose are all things from their beginning, yea the beginning itself too; from whom issue the times and the dispensation of the fullness of times, according to which all things up to the very first are gathered up in Christ? What beginning, however, has the other god; that is to say, how can anything proceed from him, who has no work to show? And if there be no beginning, how can there be times? If no times, what fullness of times can there be? And if no fullness, what dispensation? Indeed, what has he ever done on earth, that any long dispensation of times to be fulfilled can be put to his account, for the accomplishment of all things in Christ, even of things in heaven? Nor can we possibly suppose that any things whatever have been at any time done in heaven by any other God than Him by whom, as all men allow, all things have been done on earth. Now, if it is impossible for all these things from the beginning to be reckoned to any other God than the Creator, who will believe that an alien god has recapitulated them in an alien Christ, instead of their own proper Author in His own Christ? If, again, they belong to the Creator, they must needs be separate from the other god; and if separate, then opposed to him. But then how can opposites be gathered together into him by whom they are in short destroyed? Again, what Christ do the following words announce, when the apostle says: That we should be to the praise of His glory, who first trusted in Christ? Ephesians 1:12 Now who could have first trusted - i.e. previously trusted - in God, before His advent, except the Jews to whom Christ was previously announced, from the beginning? He who was thus foretold, was also foretrusted. Hence the apostle refers the statement to himself, that is, to the Jews, in order that he may draw a distinction with respect to the Gentiles, (when he goes on to say:) In whom you also trusted, after that you heard the word of truth, the gospel (of your salvation); in whom you believed, and were sealed with His Holy Spirit of promise. Ephesians 1:13 of what promise? That which was made through Joel: In the last days will I pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh, Joel 2:28 that is, on all nations. Therefore the Spirit and the Gospel will be found in the Christ, who was foretrusted, because foretold. Again, the Father of glory Ephesians 2:17 is He whose Christ, when ascending to heaven, is celebrated as the King of Glory in the Psalm: Who is this King of Glory? The Lord of Hosts, He is the King of Glory. From Him also is besought the spirit of wisdom, Ephesians 1:17 at whose disposal is enumerated that sevenfold distribution of the spirit of grace by Isaiah. Isaiah 11:2 He likewise will grant the enlightenment of the eyes of the understanding, Ephesians 1:18 who has also enriched our natural eyes with light; to whom, moreover, the blindness of the people is offensive: And who is blind, but my servants?...yea, the servants of God have become blind. In His gift, too, are the riches (of the glory) of His inheritance in the saints, Ephesians 1:18 who promised such an inheritance in the call of the Gentiles: Ask of me, and I will give You the heathen for Your inheritance. It was He who wrought in Christ His mighty power, by raising Him from the dead, and setting Him at His own right hand, and putting all things under His feet Ephesians 1:19-22 - even the same who said: Sit on my right hand, until I make Your enemies Your footstool. For in another passage the Spirit says to the Father concerning the Son: You have put all things under His feet. Now, if from all these facts which are found in the Creator there is yet to be deduced another god and another Christ, let us go in quest of the Creator. I suppose, forsooth, we find Him, when he speaks of such as were dead in trespasses and sins, wherein they had walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, who works in the children of disobedience. Ephesians 2:1-2 But Marcion must not here interpret the world as meaning the God of the world. For a creature bears no resemblance to the Creator; the thing made, none to its Maker; the world, none to God. He, moreover, who is the Prince of the power of the ages must not be thought to be called the prince of the power of the air; for He who is chief over the higher powers derives no title from the lower powers, although these, too, may be ascribed to Him. Nor, again, can He possibly seem to be the instigator of that unbelief which He Himself had rather to endure at the hand of the Jews and the Gentiles alike. We may therefore simply conclude that these designations are unsuited to the Creator. There is another being to whom they are more applicable - and the apostle knew very well who that was. Who then is he? Undoubtedly he who has raised up children of disobedience against the Creator Himself ever since he took possession of that air of His; even as the prophet makes him say: I will set my throne above the stars;... I will go up above the clouds; I will be like the Most High. This must mean the devil, whom in another passage (since such will they there have the apostle's meaning to be) we shall recognize in the appellation the god of this world. For he has filled the whole world with the lying pretence of his own divinity. To be sure, if he had not existed, we might then possibly have applied these descriptions to the Creator. But the apostle, too, had lived in Judaism; and when he parenthetically observed of the sins (of that period of his life), in which also we all had our conversation in times past, Ephesians 2:3 he must not be understood to indicate that the Creator was the lord of sinful men, and the prince of this air; but as meaning that in his Judaism he had been one of the children of disobedience, having the devil as his instigator - when he persecuted the church and the Christ of the Creator. Therefore he says: We also were the children of wrath, but by nature. Ephesians 2:3 Let the heretic, however, not contend that, because the Creator called the Jews children, therefore the Creator is the lord of wrath. For when (the apostle) says, We were by nature the children of wrath, inasmuch as the Jews were not the Creator's children by nature, but by the election of their fathers, he (must have) referred their being children of wrath to nature, and not to the Creator, adding this at last, even as others, Ephesians 2:3 who, of course, were not children of God. It is manifest that sins, and lusts of the flesh, and unbelief, and anger, are ascribed to the common nature of all mankind, the devil however leading that nature astray, which he has already infected with the implanted germ of sin. We, says he, are His workmanship, created in Christ. Ephesians 2:10 It is one thing to make (as a workman), another thing to create. But he assigns both to One. Man is the workmanship of the Creator. He therefore who made man (at first), created him also in Christ. As touching the substance of nature, He made him; as touching the work of grace, He created him. Look also at what follows in connection with these words: Wherefore remember, that you being in time past Gentiles in the flesh, who are called uncircumcision by that which has the name of circumcision in the flesh made by the hand - that at that time you were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covets of promise, having no hope, and without God in the world. Ephesians 2:11-12 Now, without what God and without what Christ were these Gentiles? Surely, without Him to whom the commonwealth of Israel belonged, and the covets and the promise. But now in Christ, says he, you who were sometimes far off are made near by His blood. Ephesians 2:13 From whom were they far off before? From the (privileges) whereof he speaks above, even from the Christ of the Creator, from the commonwealth of Israel, from the covets, from the hope of the promise, from God Himself. Since this is the case, the Gentiles are consequently now in Christ made near to these (blessings), from which they were once far off. But if we are in Christ brought so very near to the commonwealth of Israel, which comprises the religion of the divine Creator, and to the covets and to the promise, yea to their very God Himself, it is quite ridiculous (to suppose that) the Christ of the other god has brought us to this proximity to the Creator from afar. The apostle had in mind that it had been predicted concerning the call of the Gentiles from their distant alienation in words like these: They who were far off from me have come to my righteousness. For the Creator's righteousness no less than His peace was announced in Christ, as we have often shown already. Therefore he says: He is our peace, who has made both one Ephesians 2:14 - that is, the Jewish nation and the Gentile world. What is near, and what was far off now that the middle wall has been broken down of their enmity, (are made one) in His flesh. Ephesians 2:15 But Marcion erased the pronoun His, that he might make the enmity refer to flesh, as if (the apostle spoke) of a carnal enmity, instead of the enmity which was a rival to Christ. And thus you have (as I have said elsewhere) exhibited the stupidity of Pontus, rather than the adroitness of a Marrucinian, for you here deny him flesh to whom in the verse above you allowed blood! Since, however, He has made the law obsolete by His own precepts, even by Himself fulfilling the law (for superfluous is, You shall not commit adultery, when He says, You shall not look on a woman to lust after her; superfluous also is, You shall do no murder, when He says, You shall not speak evil of your neighbour,) it is impossible to make an adversary of the law out of one who so completely promotes it. For to create in Himself of two, for He who had made is also the same who creates (just as we have found it stated above: For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus), Ephesians 2:10 one new man, making peace (really new, and really man - no phantom - but new, and newly born of a virgin by the Spirit of God), that He might reconcile both unto God Ephesians 2:15-16 (even the God whom both races had offended - both Jew and Gentile), in one body, says he, having in it slain the enmity by the cross. Ephesians 2:16 Thus we find from this passage also, that there was in Christ a fleshly body, such as was able to endure the cross. When, therefore, He came and preached peace to them that were near and to them which were afar off, we both obtained access to the Father, being now no more strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints, and of the household of God (even of Him from whom, as we have shown above, we were aliens, and placed far off), built upon the foundation of the apostles Ephesians 2:17-20 - (the apostle added), and the prophets; these words, however, the heretic erased, forgetting that the Lord had set in His Church not only apostles, but prophets also. He feared, no doubt, that our building was to stand in Christ upon the foundation of the ancient prophets, since the apostle himself never fails to build us up everywhere with (the words of) the prophets. For whence did he learn to call Christ the chief corner-stone, Ephesians 2:20 but from the figure given him in the Psalm: The stone which the builders rejected has become the head (stone) of the corner? 5.19. I am accustomed in my prescription against all heresies, to fix my compendious criterion (of truth) in the testimony of time; claiming priority therein as our rule, and alleging lateness to be the characteristic of every heresy. This shall now be proved even by the apostle, when he says: For the hope which is laid up for you in heaven, whereof you heard before in the word of the truth of the gospel; which has come unto you, as it is unto all the world. Colossians 1:5-6 For if, even at that time, the tradition of the gospel had spread everywhere, how much more now! Now, if it is our gospel which has spread everywhere, rather than any heretical gospel, much less Marcion's, which only dates from the reign of Antoninus, then ours will be the gospel of the apostles. But should Marcion's gospel succeed in filling the whole world, it would not even in that case be entitled to the character of apostolic. For this quality, it will be evident, can only belong to that gospel which was the first to fill the world; in other words, to the gospel of that God who of old declared this of its promulgation: Their sound is gone out through all the earth, and their words to the end of the world. He calls Christ the image of the invisible God. Colossians 1:15 We in like manner say that the Father of Christ is invisible, for we know that it was the Son who was seen in ancient times (whenever any appearance was vouchsafed to men in the name of God) as the image of (the Father) Himself. He must not be regarded, however, as making any difference between a visible and an invisible God; because long before he wrote this we find a description of our God to this effect: No man can see the Lord, and live. Exodus 33:20 If Christ is not the first-begotten before every creature, as that Word of God by whom all things were made, and without whom nothing was made; John 1:3 if all things were not in Him created, whether in heaven or on earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones or dominions, or principalities, or powers; if all things were not created by Him and for Him (for these truths Marcion ought not to allow concerning Him), then the apostle could not have so positively laid it down, that He is before all. For how is He before all, if He is not before all things? How, again, is He before all things, if He is not the first-born of every creature - if He is not the Word of the Creator? Now how will he be proved to have been before all things, who appeared after all things? Who can tell whether he had a prior existence, when he has found no proof that he had any existence at all? In what way also could it have pleased (the Father) that in Him should all fullness dwell? Colossians 1:19 For, to begin with, what fullness is that which is not comprised of the constituents which Marcion has removed from it - even those that were created in Christ, whether in heaven or on earth, whether angels or men? Which is not made of the things that are visible and invisible? Which consists not of thrones and dominions and principalities and powers? If, on the other hand, our false apostles and Judaizing gospellers have introduced all these things out of their own stores, and Marcion has applied them to constitute the fullness of his own god, (this hypothesis, absurd though it be, alone would justify him;) for how, on any other supposition, could the rival and the destroyer of the Creator have been willing that His fullness should dwell in his Christ? To whom, again, does He reconcile all things by Himself, making peace by the blood of His cross, Colossians 1:20 but to Him whom those very things had altogether offended, against whom they had rebelled by transgression, (but) to whom they had at last returned? Conciliated they might have been to a strange god; but reconciled they could not possibly have been to any other than their own God. Accordingly, ourselves who were sometime alienated and enemies in our mind by wicked works Colossians 1:21 does He reconcile to the Creator, against whom we had committed offense - worshipping the creature to the prejudice of the Creator. As, however, he says elsewhere, Ephesians 1:23 that the Church is the body of Christ, so here also (the apostle) declares that he fills up that which is behind of the afflictions of Christ in his flesh for His body's sake, which is the Church. Colossians 1:24 But you must not on this account suppose that on every mention of His body the term is only a metaphor, instead of meaning real flesh. For he says above that we are reconciled in His body through death; Colossians 1:22 meaning, of course, that He died in that body wherein death was possible through the flesh: (therefore he adds,) not through the Church (per ecclesiam), but expressly for the sake of the Church (proper ecclesiam), exchanging body for body - one of flesh for a spiritual one. When, again, he warns them to beware of subtle words and philosophy, as being a vain deceit, such as is after the rudiments of the world (not understanding thereby the mundane fabric of sky and earth, but worldly learning, and the tradition of men, subtle in their speech and their philosophy), Colossians 2:8 it would be tedious, and the proper subject of a separate work, to show how in this sentence (of the apostle's) all heresies are condemned, on the ground of their consisting of the resources of subtle speech and the rules of philosophy. But (once for all) let Marcion know that the principle term of his creed comes from the school of Epicurus, implying that the Lord is stupid and indifferent; wherefore he refuses to say that He is an object to be feared. Moreover, from the porch of the Stoics he brings out matter, and places it on a par with the Divine Creator. He also denies the resurrection of the flesh - a truth which none of the schools of philosophy agreed together to hold. But how remote is our (Catholic) verity from the artifices of this heretic, when it dreads to arouse the anger of God, and firmly believes that He produced all things out of nothing, and promises to us a restoration from the grave of the same flesh (that died) and holds without a blush that Christ was born of the virgin's womb! At this, philosophers, and heretics, and the very heathen, laugh and jeer. For God has chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise 1 Corinthians 1:27 - that God, no doubt, who in reference to this very dispensation of His threatened long before that He would destroy the wisdom of the wise. Thanks to this simplicity of truth, so opposed to the subtlety and vain deceit of philosophy, we cannot possibly have any relish for such perverse opinions. Then, if God quickens us together with Christ, forgiving us our trespasses, Colossians 2:13 we cannot suppose that sins are forgiven by Him against whom, as having been all along unknown, they could not have been committed. Now tell me, Marcion, what is your opinion of the apostle's language, when he says, Let no man judge you in meat, or in drink, or in respect of a holy day, or of the new moon, or of the sabbath, which is a shadow of things to come, but the body is of Christ? Colossians 2:16-17 We do not now treat of the law, further than (to remark) that the apostle here teaches clearly how it has been abolished, even by passing from shadow to substance - that is, from figurative types to the reality, which is Christ. The shadow, therefore, is His to whom belongs the body also; in other words, the law is His, and so is Christ. If you separate the law and Christ, assigning one to one god and the other to another, it is the same as if you were to attempt to separate the shadow from the body of which it is the shadow. Manifestly Christ has relation to the law, if the body has to its shadow. But when he blames those who alleged visions of angels as their authority for saying that men must abstain from meats - you must not touch, you must not taste - in a voluntary humility, (at the same time) vainly puffed up in the fleshly mind, and not holding the Head, (the apostle) does not in these terms attack the law or Moses, as if it was at the suggestion of superstitious angels that he had enacted his prohibition of sundry aliments. For Moses had evidently received the law from God. When, therefore, he speaks of their following the commandments and doctrines of men, Colossians 2:22 he refers to the conduct of those persons who held not the Head, even Him in whom all things are gathered together; for they are all recalled to Christ, and concentrated in Him as their initiating principle - even the meats and drinks which were indifferent in their nature. All the rest of his precepts, as we have shown sufficiently, when treating of them as they occurred in another epistle, emanated from the Creator, who, while predicting that old things were to pass away, and that He would make all things new, commanded men to break up fresh ground for themselves, and thereby taught them even then to put off the old man and put on the new. 5.21. To this epistle alone did its brevity avail to protect it against the falsifying hands of Marcion. I wonder, however, when he received (into his Apostolicon) this letter which was written but to one man, that he rejected the two epistles to Timothy and the one to Titus, which all treat of ecclesiastical discipline. His aim, was, I suppose, to carry out his interpolating process even to the number of (St. Paul's) epistles. And now, reader, I beg you to remember that we have here adduced proofs out of the apostle, in support of the subjects which we previously had to handle, and that we have now brought to a close the topics which we deferred to this (portion of our) work. (This favour I request of you,) that you may not think that any repetition here has been superfluous, for we have only fulfilled our former engagement to you; nor look with suspicion on any postponement there, where we merely set forth the essential points (of the argument). If you carefully examine the entire work, you will acquit us of either having been redundant here, or diffident there, in your own honest judgment.
4. Tertullian, On The Soul, 9 (2nd cent. CE - 3rd cent. CE)

5. Tertullian, On Baptism, 18.5, 19.1-19.3, 20.1 (2nd cent. CE - 3rd cent. CE)

6. Tertullian, On The Crown, 3.2 (2nd cent. CE - 3rd cent. CE)

7. Tertullian, On Idolatry, 6.2 (2nd cent. CE - 3rd cent. CE)

8. Tertullian, On Repentance, 6.14 (2nd cent. CE - 3rd cent. CE)

9. Tertullian, Prescription Against Heretics, 41.2 (2nd cent. CE - 3rd cent. CE)

10. Origen, Against Celsus, 5.34-5.36, 8.29 (3rd cent. CE - 3rd cent. CE)

5.34. But, that we may not pass without notice what Celsus has said between these and the preceding paragraphs, let us quote his words: We might adduce Herodotus as a witness on this point, for he expresses himself as follows: 'For the people of the cities Marea and Apis, who inhabit those parts of Egypt that are adjacent to Libya, and who look upon themselves as Libyans, and not as Egyptians, finding their sacrificial worship oppressive, and wishing not to be excluded from the use of cows' flesh, sent to the oracle of Jupiter Ammon, saying that there was no relationship between them and the Egyptians, that they dwelt outside the Delta, that there was no community of sentiment between them and the Egyptians, and that they wished to be allowed to partake of all kinds of food. But the god would not allow them to do as they desired, saying that that country was a part of Egypt, which was watered by the inundation of the Nile, and that those were Egyptians who dwell to the south of the city of Elephantine, and drink of the river Nile.' Such is the narrative of Herodotus. But, continues Celsus, Ammon in divine things would not make a worse ambassador than the angels of the Jews, so that there is nothing wrong in each nation observing its established method of worship. of a truth, we shall find very great differences prevailing among the nations, and yet each seems to deem its own by far the best. Those inhabitants of Ethiopia who dwell in Meroe worship Jupiter and Bacchus alone; the Arabians, Urania and Bacchus only; all the Egyptians, Osiris and Isis; the Saïtes, Minerva; while the Naucratites have recently classed Serapis among their deities, and the rest according to their respective laws. And some abstain from the flesh of sheep, and others from that of crocodiles; others, again, from that of cows, while they regard swine's flesh with loathing. The Scythians, indeed, regard it as a noble act to banquet upon human beings. Among the Indians, too, there are some who deem themselves discharging a holy duty in eating their fathers, and this is mentioned in a certain passage by Herodotus. For the sake of credibility, I shall again quote his very words, for he writes as follows: 'For if any one were to make this proposal to all men, viz., to bid him select out of all existing laws the best, each would choose, after examination, those of his own country. Men each consider their own laws much the best, and therefore it is not likely than any other than a madman would make these things a subject of ridicule. But that such are the conclusions of all men regarding the laws, may be determined by many other evidences, and especially by the following illustration. Darius, during his reign, having summoned before him those Greeks who happened to be present at the time, inquired of them for how much they would be willing to eat their deceased fathers? Their answer was, that for no consideration would they do such a thing. After this, Darius summoned those Indians who are called Callatians, who are in the habit of eating their parents, and asked of them in the presence of these Greeks, who learned what passed through an interpreter, for what amount of money they would undertake to burn their deceased fathers with fire? On which they raised a loud shout, and bade the king say no more.' Such is the way, then, in which these matters are regarded. And Pindar appears to me to be right in saying that 'law' is the king of all things. 5.35. The argument of Celsus appears to point by these illustrations to this conclusion: that it is an obligation incumbent on all men to live according to their country's customs, in which case they will escape censure; whereas the Christians, who have abandoned their native usages, and who are not one nation like the Jews, are to be blamed for giving their adherence to the teaching of Jesus. Let him then tell us whether it is a becoming thing for philosophers, and those who have been taught not to yield to superstition, to abandon their country's customs, so as to eat of those articles of food which are prohibited in their respective cities? Or whether this proceeding of theirs is opposed to what is becoming? For if, on account of their philosophy, and the instructions which they have received against superstition, they should eat, in disregard of their native laws, what was interdicted by their fathers, why should the Christians (since the Gospel requires them not to busy themselves about statues and images, or even about any of the created works of God but to ascend on high, and present the soul to the Creator); when acting in a similar manner to the philosophers, be censured for so doing? But if, for the sake of defending the thesis which he has proposed to himself, Celsus, or those who think with him, should say, that even one who had studied philosophy would keep his country's laws, then philosophers in Egypt, for example, would act most ridiculously in avoiding the eating of onions, in order to observe their country's laws, or certain parts of the body, as the head and shoulders, in order not to transgress the traditions of their fathers. And I do not speak of those Egyptians who shudder with fear at the discharge of wind from the body, because if any one of these were to become a philosopher, and still observe the laws of his country, he would be a ridiculous philosopher, acting very unphilosophically. In the same way, then, he who has been led by the Gospel to worship the God of all things, and, from regard to his country's laws, lingers here below among images and statues of men, and does not desire to ascend to the Creator, will resemble those who have indeed learned philosophy, but who are afraid of things which ought to inspire no terrors, and who regard it as an act of impiety to eat of those things which have been enumerated. 5.36. But what sort of being is this Ammon of Herodotus, whose words Celsus has quoted, as if by way of demonstrating how each one ought to keep his country's laws? For this Ammon would not allow the people of the cities of Marea and Apis, who inhabit the districts adjacent to Libya, to treat as a matter of indifference the use of cows' flesh, which is a thing not only indifferent in its own nature, but which does not prevent a man from being noble and virtuous. If Ammon, then, forbade the use of cows' flesh, because of the advantage which results from the use of the animal in the cultivation of the ground, and in addition to this, because it is by the female that the breed is increased, the account would possess more plausibility. But now he simply requires that those who drink of the Nile should observe the laws of the Egyptians regarding cattle. And hereupon Celsus, taking occasion to pass a jest upon the employment of the angels among the Jews as the ambassadors of God, says that Ammon did not make a worse ambassador of divine things than did the angels of the Jews, into the meaning of whose words and manifestations he instituted no investigation; otherwise he would have seen, that it is not for oxen that God is concerned, even where He may appear to legislate for them, or for irrational animals, but that what is written for the sake of men, under the appearance of relating to irrational animals, contains certain truths of nature. Celsus, moreover, says that no wrong is committed by any one who wishes to observe the religious worship sanctioned by the laws of his country; and it follows, according to his view, that the Scythians commit no wrong, when, in conformity with their country's laws, they eat human beings. And those Indians who eat their own fathers are considered, according to Celsus, to do a religious, or at least not a wicked act. He adduces, indeed, a statement of Herodotus which favours the principle that each one ought, from a sense of what is becoming, to obey his country's laws; and he appears to approve of the custom of those Indians called Callatians, who in the time of Darius devoured their parents, since, on Darius inquiring for how great a sum of money they would be willing to lay aside this usage, they raised a loud shout, and bade the king say no more. 8.29. But it is to be observed that the Jews, who claim for themselves a correct understanding of the law of Moses, carefully restrict their food to such things as are accounted clean, and abstain from those that are unclean. They also do not use in their food the blood of an animal nor the flesh of an animal torn by wild beasts, and some other things which it would take too long for us at present to detail. But Jesus, wishing to lead all men by His teaching to the pure worship and service of God, and anxious not to throw any hindrance in the way of many who might be benefited by Christianity, through the imposition of a burdensome code of rules in regard to food, has laid it down, that not that which goes into the mouth defiles a man, but that which comes out of the mouth; for whatsoever enters in at the mouth goes into the belly, and is cast out into the draught. But those things which proceed out of the mouth are evil thoughts when spoken, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies. Paul also says, Meat commends us not to God: for neither, if we eat, are we the better; neither, if we eat not, are we the worse. Wherefore, as there is some obscurity about this matter, without some explanation is given, it seemed good to the apostles of Jesus and the elders assembled together at Antioch, and also, as they themselves say, to the Holy Spirit, to write a letter to the Gentile believers, forbidding them to partake of those things from which alone they say it is necessary to abstain, namely, things offered to idols, things strangled, and blood.
11. Anon., Epistle To Diognetus, 4

Subjects of this text:

subject book bibliographic info
augustus Gunderson (2022), The Social Worlds of Ancient Jews and Christians: Essays in Honor of L. Michael White, 109
carthage Pignot (2020), The Catechumenate in Late Antique Africa (4th–6th Centuries): Augustine of Hippo, His Contemporaries and Early Reception, 2
catechumenate,dismissal Pignot (2020), The Catechumenate in Late Antique Africa (4th–6th Centuries): Augustine of Hippo, His Contemporaries and Early Reception, 2
catechumenate,fasting Pignot (2020), The Catechumenate in Late Antique Africa (4th–6th Centuries): Augustine of Hippo, His Contemporaries and Early Reception, 2
catechumenate,penance Pignot (2020), The Catechumenate in Late Antique Africa (4th–6th Centuries): Augustine of Hippo, His Contemporaries and Early Reception, 2
catechumenate,renunciation Pignot (2020), The Catechumenate in Late Antique Africa (4th–6th Centuries): Augustine of Hippo, His Contemporaries and Early Reception, 2
catechumenate,vigils Pignot (2020), The Catechumenate in Late Antique Africa (4th–6th Centuries): Augustine of Hippo, His Contemporaries and Early Reception, 2
christ,and dualism Yates and Dupont (2020), The Bible in Christian North Africa: Part I: Commencement to the Confessiones of Augustine (ca. 180 to 400 CE), 98
cicero Gunderson (2022), The Social Worlds of Ancient Jews and Christians: Essays in Honor of L. Michael White, 109
circumcision' Rosenblum (2016), The Jewish Dietary Laws in the Ancient World, 142
colossian assembly,correspondence Gunderson (2022), The Social Worlds of Ancient Jews and Christians: Essays in Honor of L. Michael White, 120
corinthian assembly,correspondence Gunderson (2022), The Social Worlds of Ancient Jews and Christians: Essays in Honor of L. Michael White, 120
diogenes laërtius Gunderson (2022), The Social Worlds of Ancient Jews and Christians: Essays in Honor of L. Michael White, 109
dualism Yates and Dupont (2020), The Bible in Christian North Africa: Part I: Commencement to the Confessiones of Augustine (ca. 180 to 400 CE), 98
ephesian assembly,correspondence Gunderson (2022), The Social Worlds of Ancient Jews and Christians: Essays in Honor of L. Michael White, 120
epicurus Gunderson (2022), The Social Worlds of Ancient Jews and Christians: Essays in Honor of L. Michael White, 109
epistolography Gunderson (2022), The Social Worlds of Ancient Jews and Christians: Essays in Honor of L. Michael White, 109, 120
eucharist Pignot (2020), The Catechumenate in Late Antique Africa (4th–6th Centuries): Augustine of Hippo, His Contemporaries and Early Reception, 2
euthalian apparatus Gunderson (2022), The Social Worlds of Ancient Jews and Christians: Essays in Honor of L. Michael White, 120
faith,faithfulness (pistis) Gunderson (2022), The Social Worlds of Ancient Jews and Christians: Essays in Honor of L. Michael White, 120
galatian assembly,correspondence Gunderson (2022), The Social Worlds of Ancient Jews and Christians: Essays in Honor of L. Michael White, 120
heresy,heretics Gunderson (2022), The Social Worlds of Ancient Jews and Christians: Essays in Honor of L. Michael White, 120
heretics see also donatists manichaeans,tertullians scriptural interpretation against Yates and Dupont (2020), The Bible in Christian North Africa: Part I: Commencement to the Confessiones of Augustine (ca. 180 to 400 CE), 98
horace Gunderson (2022), The Social Worlds of Ancient Jews and Christians: Essays in Honor of L. Michael White, 109
laodicean assembly,correspondence Gunderson (2022), The Social Worlds of Ancient Jews and Christians: Essays in Honor of L. Michael White, 120
law,the,letter of Rosenblum (2016), The Jewish Dietary Laws in the Ancient World, 142
law,the,moral law Rosenblum (2016), The Jewish Dietary Laws in the Ancient World, 142
law,the,ritual law Rosenblum (2016), The Jewish Dietary Laws in the Ancient World, 142
law,the,spirit of Rosenblum (2016), The Jewish Dietary Laws in the Ancient World, 142
macedonia Gunderson (2022), The Social Worlds of Ancient Jews and Christians: Essays in Honor of L. Michael White, 120
marcion Gunderson (2022), The Social Worlds of Ancient Jews and Christians: Essays in Honor of L. Michael White, 109, 120; Yates and Dupont (2020), The Bible in Christian North Africa: Part I: Commencement to the Confessiones of Augustine (ca. 180 to 400 CE), 98
old testament,and dualism Yates and Dupont (2020), The Bible in Christian North Africa: Part I: Commencement to the Confessiones of Augustine (ca. 180 to 400 CE), 98
origen Gunderson (2022), The Social Worlds of Ancient Jews and Christians: Essays in Honor of L. Michael White, 120
paul,and faithfulness (pistis) Gunderson (2022), The Social Worlds of Ancient Jews and Christians: Essays in Honor of L. Michael White, 120
paul,and moral progress Gunderson (2022), The Social Worlds of Ancient Jews and Christians: Essays in Honor of L. Michael White, 109, 120
paul Gunderson (2022), The Social Worlds of Ancient Jews and Christians: Essays in Honor of L. Michael White, 109, 120
philippian assembly,correspondence Gunderson (2022), The Social Worlds of Ancient Jews and Christians: Essays in Honor of L. Michael White, 109, 120
plato Gunderson (2022), The Social Worlds of Ancient Jews and Christians: Essays in Honor of L. Michael White, 109
pliny the younger Gunderson (2022), The Social Worlds of Ancient Jews and Christians: Essays in Honor of L. Michael White, 109
roman assembly,correspondence Gunderson (2022), The Social Worlds of Ancient Jews and Christians: Essays in Honor of L. Michael White, 120
seneca Gunderson (2022), The Social Worlds of Ancient Jews and Christians: Essays in Honor of L. Michael White, 109
tertullian,adversus judaeos Yates and Dupont (2020), The Bible in Christian North Africa: Part I: Commencement to the Confessiones of Augustine (ca. 180 to 400 CE), 98
tertullian,adversus marcionem Yates and Dupont (2020), The Bible in Christian North Africa: Part I: Commencement to the Confessiones of Augustine (ca. 180 to 400 CE), 98
tertullian,scriptural interpretation against heretics Yates and Dupont (2020), The Bible in Christian North Africa: Part I: Commencement to the Confessiones of Augustine (ca. 180 to 400 CE), 98
tertullian Gunderson (2022), The Social Worlds of Ancient Jews and Christians: Essays in Honor of L. Michael White, 120; Pignot (2020), The Catechumenate in Late Antique Africa (4th–6th Centuries): Augustine of Hippo, His Contemporaries and Early Reception, 2