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The passages I have quoted have sufficiently shown, not only the age of Clement, and of this epistle, but the character of it, and also that this is the only iece of Clement that can be relied on asd genuine. I shalll) therefore be excused, if I do not quote the Constitutions, Recognitions, or any other piece, as his: no, not that which is called his second epistle: though I shall give some account of it, after I have put down my extracts out of this.
Indeed the second epistle might be shown by many arguments not to be genuine, though some learned men have been willing to own it as such. It is ex ressly rejected as spurious bya Photius. Grabef has we 1 observed, that the forementioned Dionysius, bishop of Corinth, in the second century, makes mention of but one epistle of Clement: that Clement of Alexandria and Origen, who have quoted the first, never take any notice of the second: nor yet Irenaeus, who has so particularly mentioned the first, and could not well have omitted to mention the other also, if he had known any thing of it. From all which Grabe concludes, with great probability, that this piece was not written before the middle of the third centur .
I would only farther observe, that some have supposed our Clement to have been of the famil of the Caesars, and to have suffered martyrdom. But bot these suppositions seem to be originally owing to a confounding him with Flavius Clemens, the consul: who was a near relation of Domitian, and was also put to death by him for christianity.That Clement was no martyr, is fairly concluded from the silence of Irenaeus, Tertullian, Eusebius, and others: who could not have omitted this, if there had been any ground for it.
A Book qf the New Testament expressly quoted by
In this epistle there is but one book of the New Testament expressly named, which is the first epistle of St. Paul to the Corinthians.
N. T. CLEMENT. .
I. 1 Cor. i. 12. “ Now this I. Ch. xlvii. ‘ Takeg into I say, that every one of you your hands the e istle of the saith, I am of Paul, and I of blessed Paul t e apostle.
N. T. Apollos, and I of Cephas, and I of Christ.”
What did he at the first write to you in the beginning of the gospel? Verily he did by the Spirit admonish you concerning himself, and Cephas, and Apollos, because that even then you did form parties.’
St. Clement here quotes this epistle to the Corinthians themselves: to whom, he sa s, it was written by the apostle
I need not observe,
ow strong an argument t
for the genuineness of the first epistle to the Corinthians,
which we now have.
And he says, Paul wrote, and admo
nished them, by the Spirit: or, as in the original, spiritually.
Quotations and flllusiom.
II. Jer. ix. 23, 24. “ Thus saith the Lord: Let not the wise man glory in his wisgpm,” &c. Comp. 1 Cor. i.
Luke vi. 36. “ Be ye thereforeh merciful, as your Father also is merciful. V. 37, Judge not, and ye shall not be judged: condemn not, and ye shall not be condemned: forgive, and ye shall be forgiven: 38, Give, and it shall be given unto you: good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom. For with the same measure that ye mete withal, it shall be measured to you again.”
II. Ch. xiii. ‘ And let us do as it is written. For thus saith the Holy Spirit.“Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom”—i Especially rememberin the words of the Lord esus, which he spake, teaching gentleness and long sufl‘ering. For thus he said: “ Be ye merciful, that ye may obtain mercy: forgive, that it may be forgiven unto you. As you do, so shall it be done unto you: as you give, so shall it be given unto you: as ye judge, so shall ye bejudged : as ye show kindness, so shall kindness be shown unto you : with what measure ye mete, with the same shall it be N. T.
Matt. vii. l. “ Judge not, that ye be not judged. 2. For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again. Ver. 12, Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do unto you, do ye even so to them.”
CLEMENT. measured to ou.” By this command,an b these rules, let us establislli ourselves, that we may always walk obediently to his holy words.’
This passage shows the great respect, which was aid to the words of Christ, [as recorded by the evangelistsfi since having quoted a text of the Old Testament, as dictated by
Spirit; he yet demands a still more especial re
gard to the words of Christ, which there follow.
III. Matt. xxvi. 24, “ But woe to that man, by whom the Son of Man is betrayed: it had been good for that man, if he had not been born.”
Matt. xviii. 6. “ But whoso shall offend one of these little ones which believe in me; it were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that he were cast into the sea.”
Mark ix. 42. “ And whosoever shall offend one of these little ones that believe in me, it is better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and he were cast into the sea.”
Luke xvii. 2. “ It were better forhim,that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and he cast into the sea, than that he should offend one of these little ones.”
III. Ch. xlvi. ‘ Remember the words of the Lord Jesus. For he said: “ Woe to that man [by whom offences come]. It were better for him that he had not been born, than that he should offend one of my elect. It were better for him, that a millstone should be tied about his neck, and that he should be drowned in the sea, than that he should of_ fend one of my little ones.’
I have put down on the other side the words of several evangelists, that every one may the better judge: but it is generally supposed, that the latter part of this passage refers to Luke xvii.
Here is however one difficult : and it is a difficulty which may frequently occur, w ilst we are considering these very early writers, who were conversant With the apostles, and others, who had seen and heard our Lord, and were in a manner as well acquainted with our Saviour’s doctrine and history as the evangelists themselves; unless their quotations or allusions are very express and clear. The question then here is, whether Clement in these places refers to words of Christ written and recorded; or whether he reminds the Corinthians of words of Christ” which he and they might have heard from the apostles, or other eye and ear witnesses of our Lord. Le Clerck in his Dissertation on the Four Gospels is of opinion, that Clement refers to written words of our Lord, which were in the hands of the Corinthians, and well known to them. On the other hand, I find, bishop Pearsonl thought, that Clement speaks of words which he had heard from the apostles themselves, or their disciples.
I certainly make no question but the first three gos els were written before this time. And I am well satisfied, that Clement might refer to our written gospels, though he does not exactly agree with them in expression. But whether he does refer to them, is not easy to determine, concerning a man, who very probably knew these things before they were committed to writing: and even after they were so, mi ht continue to speak of them, in the same manner he had een wont to do, as things he was well informed of, without appealing to the scriptures themselves. However either way he by these passages greatly confirms the truth of our gospels. If he be supposed to refer to them, the case is clear. If the words are spoken of, as what he had received from the apostles or others, he confirms our gospels, forasmuch as these words are agreeable to those which are there recorded: and he speaks of them, as certain and well known; both to himself, and the Corinthians of that time. We are therefore assured by Clement, that
k Clemens quidem non laudat nomine ullum evangelistam, sed bis X018; sermones Jesu Christi, quorum jubet memores esse Corinthios, cap. xiii. et cap. xlvi. Quae manifesto videntur respicere ad scriptos sermones, eosque manibus Corinthiorum vulgo tritos. Ac sane prior locus exstat, Luc. vi. 36, 37, et 38, quamvis non totidem prorsus verbis, sed eodem plane sensu. Posteriora vero verba leguntur, Matt.- xxvi. 24. Marc. ix. 42. Luc. xvii. 2. Matt. xviii. 6. Fateor tamen hic etiam sensum potissirnum respici. Sed sic solent quoque apostoli passim laudare Vetus Testamentum, et varia loca in unam orationem conjungere: nee tamen dubium est, quin respiciant ad libros sacros, quos etiamnum habemus, et quorum sacrosancta dudum eiat auctoritas. Dissert. iii. . 542. a.
lpCum veritati magis mihi consonum videatur ab apostolis ipsis, aut eorum discipulis, hzec accepisse Clementem.
I have not room for his whole argument, which is in Vindic. lgnat. Part ii cap. 11:. .
our evangelists have truly and justly recorded the words of Christ, which he spake, teaching gentleness and longsuffering, and that they are worthy to be remembered with the highest respect.
But though here is a difficulty, yet I su pose, most learned men may be of that opinion, which I ave spoken of as Le Clerc’s. Indeed when St. Paul exhorts some in a like manner, Acts xx. 35, “ To remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he said, It is more blessed to give than to receive:”I believe, it is generally reckoned, he refers them not to any writing, but only to some words of Christ, of which he and they were well informed. But nevertheless, it does not follow, that this form of reference ought always to be so understood. It may be as well used to refer to written, as to unwritten, words of the Lord. We shall find Polycarp using the same form, when he very probably, or rather certainly, refers to our written gospels. ‘ Remem‘ bering what the Lord said teaching.’ See hereafter, in Polycarp, Numb. 1V. and VIII.
Before we proceed an farther, we ought likewise to observe, that the learned ]; . Millm concludes from a passage of Irenmus, that Clement did in his manner obscurely quote Matt. xxv. 41. Irenaeusn is arguin with some heretics, and refers them to the epistle of lement, ‘ who therein ‘ delivers the doctrine received from the apostles, which ‘ declares, that there is one God Almighty, the maker of ‘ the heaven and the earth,——who brought in the flood, and ‘ called Abraham, who s ake to Moses, and sent the ‘ prophets, who has prepare the fire for the devil and his ‘ angels. That He is declared by the churches to be the ‘ Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, they who will may learn ‘ from the epistle itself.’ And this is one of Mill’s arguments, that the true reading of that text of Matthew is not, as in our copies, “everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels ;” but‘ everlasting fire, which my Father has pre‘ pared for the devil and his angels.’
I must leave it to the reader to consider, whether it can be hence determined, that Clement did here refer to Mat
“ Citavit nimirum obscurius, suo more, locum illum. Matt. xxv. 41. Prolegom. n. 140. vid. et n. 141, 343, 369, et ad Matthaei locum.
“ Adnuntians quam in recenti ab apostolis accepeiat traditionem, annuntiantem unum Deum omnipotentem, factorem coeli et terrae,——qui induxerit cataclysmum, et advocaverit Abraham,——qui colloquutus sit Moysi,—-et prophetas miserit, qui ignem praeparaverit diabolo et angelis ejus. Hunc Patrem Domini nostri Jesu Christi ab ecclesiis annuntiari, ex ipsa scriptura, qui velint, discere pomlnt, apostolieam ecclesiae traditionem intelligere. lren. lib. iii. c. 3. sect. 3.