« AnteriorContinuar »
• salvation of men. The scriptures teach true religion in a plain style ; that the ignorant as well ' as the knowing, and even children and women, may understand. Nor is that any injury to the knowing: whereas the contrary method would have been detrimental to the greatest part of • the world. And, by consulting the benefit of the most, or rather of all, the scriptures evidently • manifest themselves to be divine and heavenly.'
2. I refer to divers other places, where “ he exhorts to the reading the scriptures, or commends them; and lays down rules for the right reading them, so as to understand them. James Basnage says, All that can be offered upon this subject, may be seen in Isidore of Pelusium.
VI. 1. He had the first chapter of St. Matthew's gospel : and says, that the sacred volume of the gospels brings down the genealogy of Joseph from David; and thereby shews, that Mary likewise was of the tribe of Judah.
2. Isidore' had the doxology at the end of the Lord's Prayer.
3. He explains 6* Rom. i. 32, according to our present common reading, which he prefers. But some were rather for the other; and not only they who do them, but they also who have pleasure in them that do them:' and they said it was the ancient reading. I do not suppose that Philo ever read any of St. Paul's epistles ; but there is in him a passage very agreeable to the sense of this last mentioned reading. They are wicked,' says he, not only that do such • things, but they also who willingly approve of those who do them : however, his expressions are very different from St. Paul's. Philo, in approving,' seems to include flattery.
4. As some unbelievers absurdly and wickedly deny the prophets to have spoken at all of Christ, so he thinks, they are blameable, who endeavour to explain all the Old Testament, as • relating to him ; for, by forced applications of texts, which do not speak of Christ, they cause • those to be suspected, where he is really intended ; and so hurt the cause of truth, and strengthen the adversary.'
5. The excellent Paul, though enriched with spiritual gifts, employed some time in reading; and therefore he writes to that eminent disciple of his : “Give attendance to reading." 1 Tim. iv. 13.
6. Some,' in his time, wore about them small gospels, or some portions of the gospels; which he blames, as resembling the Jewish superstition, in wearing phylacteries. This kind of superstition we have already seen censured by TM Jerom, and Chrysostom.
CHA P. CXXX.
CYRIL, BISHOP OF ALEXANDRIA.
1. Cyril," born at Alexandria, was made bishop of his native city in the year 412. Beside other things, he wrote commentaries upon the five books of Moses, Isaiah, the twelve lesser prophets, and St. John's gospel.
Αναγινωσκειν τας γραφας οφειλεις, και μη περι πανίων Epwlav. L. iii. Ep. 13. in.
• L. i. Ep. xxiv. 369. 449. 1. ii. Ep. v. 297. I. iii. Ep. 125. 335. 1. iv. Ep. 33.61. 91. 133. 140. I. v. Ep. 281.
« Hist. de l'Eglise. I. ix, ch. 2. sect. 7. fin.
* Ασεβασι γαρ εχ' οι δρωνlες μονοι, αλλα και όσοι τοις δρωσιν έκασια γνωμη συν τη των δρωνίων εξασια συνεπιγραφονται. De Special. Leg. p. 779. C.
.. ελως τες πασαν παλαιαν εις αυλον μελαφερειν σειρωμενες 8κ εξω αίλιας τιθημι... Τα γαρ ελεγχεσθαι παρ' εκείνων
περι τεΐε μη ειρημενα εις αυτον έλκειν εκβιαζομενοι, τελων καν οις περι αυτο αληθως και διαρρηδην ειρημενοις υπονοιαν τικθεσι. L. 3. Ep. 339. Conf. I. 1. Ep. 107. 1. 2. Ep. 195.
* Και ο θεσπεσιος Παύλος, και τοι πνευματικους κομων χα. ρισμασι, της αναγνωσεως και μικραν εποιείτο σπεδην. Διο και τα θρεμματι αυτο το περιβλεπίω εγραφε. προσεχε τη αναγνωσει. L. 4. Ep. 88. in.
..απερ εφορgν οι των Ιεδαιων καθηγηθαι, ώσπερ νυν αι γυναικες τα ευαγγελια τα μικρα. . L. 2. Ep. 150. in Vol ii. p 572.
• Vol. ii.
610. o Vid. Cav. H L. Du Pin. Bib. T. iv. Tillem. Mem. T. xiv. Fabr. Bib. Gr. T. viii. p. 553, &c. Pagi in Baron. an. 412. n. 23, 24, et passim. Basnag. Amp. 412. n. 12. et alibi Et Conf. Socrat. H. E. 1. 7. c. 17. 13.. 15.
2. It is needless to say, that all the books of the New Testament, commonly received, are frequently quoted by him: I therefore observe only a few things.
3. The epistle to the Hebrews is often quoted in Cyril's works, as written by Paul.
4. The epistle of James also is often quoted by him; once after this manner : · As* says a disciple of Christ.
5. The second epistle of Peter is quoted by Cyril, sometimes.
6. Once at least he has quoted the second epistle of John; whether the third also, I cannot say certainly.
7. The epistle of Jude is quoted by him divers times.
8. The book of the Revelation is quoted as St. John's several times; once after this manner: • This' we are taught by the wise man John, who wrote the book of the Revelation, which has • had the approbation of the fathers.' Possibly that expression may denote, that the Revelation was a book about which there were disputes or different opinions.
9. From these quotations we may perceive that Cyril received all the books of the New Testament which we do ; nor did he receive any other. 10. We meet with the Lord's prayer in % Cyril
, exactly as we now have it in St. Matthew ; except that it wants the doxology.
11. Cyril commends all the evangelists; but " speaks of John as superior to the rest : he likewise calls him,' the Divine.
12. Het recommends the studying of the scriptures; and says, “that' from the holy prophets, • apostles, and evangelists, we may learn how to attain to piety, and may secure to ourselves true peace of mind.'
13. I formerly referred" to several places of Cyril, for an explication of 2 Thess. ii. 1....12. and many good interpretations of texts of the New Testament may be found in him; but I forbear to take any notice of them at present.
14. How this bishop of Alexandria treated the Novatians, in his diocese, was shewn some while ago," from Socrates.
CHA P. CXXXI.
I. His time. II. His works. III. Books of the Old Testament received by him. IV. Books of
the New Testament received by him. V. General titles and divisions of the scriptures. VI. Marks of respect for them, and exhortations to read them. VII. Explications of texts, and remarkaðle observations. VIII. The swift and wonderful progress of the Gospel.
1. THEODORET,o as is computed, was born at Antioch, about 386; made bishop of Cyrus, in Syria, in the Euphratesian province, in 420, or 423; and died in 457, or 458.
... λεγων ο Χρισ8 μαθησης. De Adorat. in Spirit. et Ιωαννης, ο και ταις των πατερων τετιμηθαι ψηφοις, κ. λ. De Verit. I. 1. T. i. p. 10. E. Par. 1638.
Adorat. in Sp. et Verit. 1. 6. 1. i. p. 196. A. • Αλλα τελων απανίων λυομενων, καθα και το σωληρος διϊσ- 8 De Adorat. in Sp. et Verit. 1. 13. T. i. p. 471. E. χυρισαίο μαθητης, πολαπες δει ευρεθηναι ημας. . [2 Pet. ii. 11.] h In Joan. T. iv. p. 8. A. Ib. 1. 9. p. 288. A. Vid. et Glapb. in Exod. 1. 3. T. i. P. ii. 10 θεολογος. Ιb. p. 87. Ε. p. 329. A. Thesaur. T. v. P. i. p. 368. C. De. Recta Fid. T. k Glaph. in Gen. 1. 1. in. T. i.
2. V. P. ii. p. 77.
Πηγας δε φαμεν εν τελοις τας αγιας προφηίας, αποστολές το • Τοις τοιςλοις μηδε χαιρειν λεγετε, φησι τα σωτηρος ημων και ευαγγελισας: οίς ενομιλενίες σαφως τε, και εντεχνως, αρυοMagrirs' %. 2. De Ador. in Spirit. et Verit. 1. 8. T. i. p. μεθα παρ' αυλων ζωοποιον τε και θειον λογον, αποχρωνίως εχονία 255. E.
προς το δυνασθαι διανευρεν εις ευσεβειαν τας ημετερας ψυχας, , 1 Τι γαρ Ιαδας ημιν επιςελλει, το σωληρος ο μαθησης και κ. λ. και τρυφην ημιν εργαζεσθαι την πνευματικην." In Es. T. i. In Joan. Ev. 1. 9. T. iv. p. 798. C. Vid. et Thesaur. T. v. P: 302. C. De Recta Fid. T. v. P. ii. p. 77.
a See vol ii. p. 94.
n See vol. ji p. 57. • Ταυτης γαρ ένεκα της αίθιας οιηθειην αν εγωγε, τον Ιωαννης • Vid. Sirmond. Garner. Cay. H. L. Fabric. Bib. Gr. T. ειπειν· “Ο ων, ο ην,
EPXQueyos. Glaph. in Exod. 1. 2. T. 1. P. vii. p. 430, &c. Du Pin Bib. T. iv. Tillem. Mem. T. xv. Pagi ü. p. 273. A. Vid. et Thesaur. T. v.
P. i. p. 20. et p. 149. C. Ann. 423. n. 8. 9. 427. n. 9, 10, 11, 18, 19. et passim. Basn. Καίλοι το της Αποκαλύψεως βιβλιον ημιν συνειθεις ο σοφος Ann. 424. n. 9, 10, et alibi. VOL. III.
p. 671. B.
II. Beside his Ecclesiastical History, and divers other useful works, he wrote Commentaries upon most parts of the sacred scripture; particularly, the five books of Moses, Joshua, the Judges, Ruth, Samuel, the Kings, the Chronicles, the Psalms, the Canticles, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Baruch, the Lamentations, Ezekiel, Daniel, the twelve lesser prophets, and St. Paul's fourteen epistles.
Most of the writings ascribed to him are generally allowed to be his; but Pagi," and some others
say, the letter to Sporacius was not written by him : and the late Mr. Barratier disputes the genuineness of the Dialogues on the Incarnation, and of the Philotheus; and he seeins to me to have proved those Dialogues to be supposititious. As for the Philotheus, it is unquestioned that Theodoret wrote å book with that title; it is referred to, and quoted by him, several times, in his Ecclesiastical History: but Mr. Barratier asserts, that the Philotheus, which we have, was not written by Theodoret: he says, that divers things are wanting in our copy, which were in the original work; and other things have been added : moreover there are in it many mistakes in historical facts, unworthy of Theodoret, and contrary to what he writes in his Ecclesiastical History. Upon the whole, if Mr. Barratier has not demonstrated this point, what he says is material, and deserves the consideration of the learned. As both those writings, therefore, may be reckoned doubtful, I shall never take any thing from them, without giving particular notice of it.
III. 1. He speaks of the great care, which Ezra had taken, to publish exact copies of the sacred scriptures of the Old Testament, one hundred and fifty years before the Greek version had been made by the Seventy. In another place he supposeth, that ° Ezra restored all the books of the Old Testament, which had been lost.Though that be not a right sentiment, I observe, that the books here mentioned by him, are the five books of Moses, Joshua, the Judges, the Kings, Job, David's Psalms, the sixteen prop'iets : and three books of Solomon, the Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, and the Canticles; which passage alone is sufficient to shew what was Theodoret's canon of the Old Testament.
2. He' vindicates the spirituality, and the divine mystery, of the book of Canticles.
3. Theodoret explains Baruch ; but his Commentary concludes $ with the end of the fifth chapter : he takes no notice of the epistle of Jeremiah, in the sixth chapter of that book, as it is divided by us.
4. In his Commentary upon Daniel, he takes no notice of the stories of Susannah, or of Bel and the Dragon, as is owned by Tillemont; but' he has the Song of the Three Children, inserted in the third chapter of the book of Daniel.
5. He says, that “ Ezekiel was the last prophet, during the captivity; and that Haggai, Zechariah, and Malachi, prophesied after the return. Again, he says : After the return from the captivity, the Jewish people had but three prophets, Haggai, Zechariah, and Malachi ; and then the gift of prophecy ceased among them: but after the coming of our Saviour, and after his ascension, the Holy Ghost came down upon the holy apostles, and by them the like gift was bestowed, not upon Jews only, but also upon all the Gentiles that believed. In another place, he says: · As" Moses is the first who committed to writing the divine oracles ; so Malachi is the last • of the prophets that wrote.'
6. Whence it is apparent, that Theodoret's canon of the Old Testament was very little, if at all, different from that of the Jews.
7. We plainly perceive, from Theodoret as well as from others, that " what we call the books of the Kings, were in those times generally called, the books of the Kingdoms.
8. He thinks it probable, that the books of the Chronicles were written after the return from the Babylonish captivity.
IV. 1. It is almost needless to observe, that Theodoret received four gospels only; of a Ann. 428. n. 21. et Seq.
* In Ezech. T. ii. p. 304. D. 6 Dissertation sur quelques écrits de Théodoret Evêque de · In Ez. ib. p. 501. A. B. Cyr, par Mr. Barratier. See Bibliothéque Germanique, T. m Pr. in Malach. T. ii. p. 931. B. xlviii. p. 50.. . . 99.
n In Judic. T. i. p. 208. B. Conf. p. 229, 230. Eranistes, seu Polymorphus. Dialogi tres. T. iv. Paris, • In Paral T. i. p. 364. A. B.
P Ταυλα οι τεσσαρες ευαγγελισαι συνεγραψαν. Εp. 130. d Præf, in Psalm. T. i. p. 396. B.
Τ. iii. p. 1003. C. Μαρίυρες οι τεσσαρες ευαγγελισαι· απαν• Præf. in Cant. T. i. p, 985.
Πες γαρ συμφωνως τα7ο διδασκασιν. Εp. 145. p.1019. D. Και į Pr. in Cant. p. 984. , & Vid. T. ï. p. 285, 286.
διδασκει ημας διαρρηδην των ιερων ευαγγελιων η τείρακλυς. Theodoret. Art. xlv. Mem. T. xy..
Ep. 145. p. 1026. B. · Vid. T. ii. p. 578, &c.
* which we saw good proof formerly: or, that he received the book of the Acts, and ascribed it to St. Luke; or, that he received fourteen epistles of the apostle Paul, upon which he wrote commentaries, still extant, as before mentioned.
2. Theodoret has digested St. Paul's epistles, according to the order of time in which they were written; and has observed, likewise, the places from which they were sent.
• I will shew,' says he, the order of the apostle's epistles: The blessed Paul wrote four* teen epistles; but « I do not think that he assigned them that order which we now have in * our Bibles. The epistle written by the divine Paul to the Romans, stands first in order ; never• theless, it is the last of those which were sent from Asia, Macedonia, and Achaia: the two
epistles first written are, the two epistles to the Thessalonians; next, the two epistles to the • Corinthians: the fifth, in order of time, is the first to Timothy; the next, is that to Titus: • the epistle to the Romans is the seventh. The other epistles were sent from Rome; the first • of these I take to be that to the Galatians. From Rome likewise he sent the epistles to the
Philippians, and that to the Ephesians, and to the Colossians, in which last he also mentions • Onesimus : for which reason the epistle to Philemon may be supposed to have been written • before ; for in it he desires, that Onesimus may be received: afterwards he wrote the epistle to * the Hebrews, and from Rome, as the conclusion shews : “ They of Italy salute you. The • last of all his epistles is the second to Timothy. This is the order of the epistles in point of • time. The epistle to the Romans has been placed first, as containing the most full and exact • representation of the Christian doctrine, in all its branches; but some say, that it has been so placed out of respect to the city to which it was sent, as presiding over the whole world.'
3. Theodoret's preface to his Commentary upon the epistle to the Ephesians deserves to be carefully read. At the end of that preface, he says: • The e former part of the epistle contains • the doctrine of the gospel ; the latter part, a moral admonition. That may be said in some measure of most of St. Paul's epistles; but it is more especially manifest in this.
4. In a note upon Eph. i. 15, 16, he says : Some' argued from thence, that the apostle had • not yet seen the Ephesians, when he wrote that epistle to them; but he does not allow their argument to be good.'
5. It may be here observed, that Theodoret always cites the epistle to the Ephesians by that title.
6. In the preface to the epistle to the Colossians, he says: Some 8 have been of opinion, that the apostle had not seen those Christians, when he wrote to them: and they endeavoured to support their opinion by these expressions, ch. ii. 1; but he says, they do not rightly interpret the words, the meaning of which is, that he was not concerned for them only, but likewise for those who had not seen him; he says, therefore: • I would ye should know, how great concern • I have for you, and for them of Laodicea; and for as many as have not seen my face in the • flesh.' He farther argues it to be very likely, from the history in the Acts, that the apostle had been at Colosse : so he argues again, in his comment upon Col. ii. 1; and iv. 10.
7. Upon Col. iv. 16, he says: • Some " have hence imagined, that the apostle had also written • to the Laodiceans, and they had forged such an epistle: but the apostle does not say the epistle • to the Laodiceans, but from Laodicea; for they had written to him about some things : pro• bably, they had informed him of some things amiss among the Colossians; whilst the like • faults were to be found with them also: therefore, he directs, that this epistle should be likewise * read to them.'
8. It is surprising to observe, how seldom Theodoret has quoted the catholic epistles: they are not quite overlooked; they are quoted: but all his quotations of them might be placed, at full length, in a little room. It was formerly shewn, that “ there are but few quotations of the catholic epistles, either in Theodoret, or Chrysostom.
a See vol. i.
p. 354. Upon Col. iv. 14. T. č. p. 363. he says : ' This person 'wrote the divine gospel, and the history of the Acts.' Oslos και το θειον συνέγραψε ευαγγελιον, και την ισοριαν των πραξawy. The book of the Acts is very often quoted by Theodoret, and as written by St. Luke.
e Pr. in Ep. ad Eph. T. iii. p. 292. C.
• Præf. in Ep. S. P. T. iii. p. 2. D. et p. 3, 4, 5, 6.
4 Την δε ταξιν, ήν εν τοις βιβλιοις εχεσιν, εκ αυτον ηγεμαι WETOITMEYO... Ib. p. 2. D.
362. C. * Ib. p. 363. C. | See before, vol. ii. p. 439. m See vol. ii. p. 438, 439.
9. He quotes the epistle of St. James. In his comment upon Gal. i. 19, he says, that James, the Lord's brother, was not so literally; nor was he the son of Joseph, by a former marriage, as some have thought; but he was the son of Cleophas, who had married the sister of our Lord's mother: he was, therefore, cousin-german to our Lord.
10. Theodoret has several times quoted the first epistle of St. Peter; and once, either 2 Pet. ii. 22, or Prov. xxvi. 11.
11. The first epistle of John is thus quoted by him : • And the divine apostle John, at the beginning of his epistle, says: “ That which we have seen, and our hands have handled." ; And, in one of the Dialogues on the Incarnation, if it be genuine, the first of St. John is thus quoted : · Hear the great John, in his catholic epistle, saying. This epistle is quoted again, 5 in the epistle to Sporacius.
12. I do not recollect any quotation of the Revelation, in the unquestioned works of Theodoret. In a passage of " Athanasius, inserted in the forementioned Dialogues, the Revelation is cited; but the genuineness of those dialogues is disputed, as before seen: and, if they were unquestionably genuine, it might not follow, that Theodoret received the book of the Revelation, unless he had himself cited it upon some other occasion. The Revelation is, once or twice, slightly cited, in the fifth volume of Theodoret's works, or the Appendix, published by Garnier; but it is not certainly known, that those writings are Theodoret's. It appears to me, therefore, probable, that Theodoret did not receive the book of the Revelation.
13. Here it may not be amiss, for the reader to compare Theodoret with Cyril of Alexandria : Cyril, who lived in Egypt, received the Revelation, and quotes the catholic epistles very freely; but Theodoret, who lived in Syria, either rejected the Revelation, or was shy of quoting it, and likewise cites the catholic epistles very seldom.
14. Upon the whole, Theodoret received the four gospels, the Acts, Paul's fourteen epistles, the epistle of James, the first of Peter, and the first of John; but there is no plain proof, that he received the book of the Revelation, or the other four catholic epistles : insomuch, that there is some reason to think, that his canon of the New Testament was the same with that of the Syrian Christians.
V. General titles and divisions of the scriptures, used by Theodoret, are such as these: the k ancient scripture, and the gospels; gospels, ? prophets, and apostles: prophets, ” and apostles; the "books of the sacred gospels, the writings of the holy apostles, and the oracles of the thrice blessed prophets ; evangelists, and apostles ; prophets; and Moses, the chief of the prophets.
VI. Terms of respect are such as these : the divine scripture; the divine apostle ; as says the most excellent Paul; the most wise Paul; oracles of the Spirit ; the Lord, in the divine gospels; the voice of the sacred gospels; divine oracles; the divine apostle, in the epistle to the Hebrews; the blessed Paul; great Peter [in the Acts;] the most excellent Peter, chief of the apostles ; thrice blessed Luke, in the Acts; which 4 the blessed Matthew teaches by the genealogy; the great and excellent Paul, Master of the whole World ; the most wise Paul, the excellent architect of the Churches.
What he asserts, he proves from the 'scriptures ; he likewise recommends the study of the scriptures, and shews the benefit of it. They," he says, who will compare the divine oracles withi human writings, may easily discern the superior excellence of the former: so he writes in an argument with heathen people. Writing to a woman, who had buried a hopeful son, he says: · He * sends her some consolatory thoughts, taken partly from reason, partly from scripture; • God having given us all manner of consolation by the divine oracles : but he needs not enlarge,
* In Ps. T. i. p. 496. A. b T. iii. p. 268. A.
c Vid. in Cant. T. i. p. 1058. A. et 1082. B. In Es. T. ii. p. 93. A. In Ep. ad Rowy. T. iii. p. 81. C. In 1 ad Tim.
p. 472. A.
« In Dan. T. ii. p. 572. D.
Hær. Fab. 1. v. c. 15. T. iv. p. 287. f Vid. Dial. 1. T. iv. p. 29. C. & T. iv. p. 701. C.
Dial. i. T. iv. p. 39. C. i Vid. Ady. Macedon. Dial. 4. T. v, p.374. A. et. p. 378. A.
In Gen. T. i. p. 31. C. D. ' Ep. 109. T. iii. p. 978. C.
m Här. Fab. Compend. T. iv. p. 187.
Ep. 17. T. iii. p. 91. D.
P Ta θεσπεσια Πειρα, το κορυφαια των αποφολων εν ταις
67. B. Γ Και ο μεγας δε της οικεμενης διδασκαλος, ο θεσπεσιος laukos. Ep. 83. T. iii. p. 958. B.
• Παυλος, ο πανσοφος, ο των εκκλησιων αριςος αρχίζεκίαν. Ep. 146. T. iii. p. 1033. D.
De Provid. Or. ix. T. iv. p. 425. A.