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hated, that it may be ke t to eternal life; so do on, who have them, hate also wi e and children, and bret ren and sisters, that you may be profitable to those you hate.———And1 as it was said to those who were of the seed of Abraham, John viii. 37, 39, “ I know that ye are Abraham’s seed ;” again, “ If ye were Abraham’s children, ye would do his works ;” so it will be said to your children, I know that ye are the children of Ambrose; and, if ye were the seed of Ambrose, ye would do his works. And perhaps they will do so, you helping them more after your departure than if you had continued with them.’
8. Still, in the same work: ‘ Christm has laid down his life for us. Let us therefore also lay down our life, I will not say for him, but for ourselves, and for those who may be edified by our martyrdom.’ Once more: ‘ Andn perhaps, as we are redeemed by the blood of Christ, Jesus havin received a name above every name; so some will be redeemed by the blood of martyrs.’
9. It is glorious to write in this manner to a beloved and excellent friend, upon whom too a man has his chief dependence, as Origen had upon Ambrose. This is true friendship; this is to esteem heaven above the world, and . to prefer religion to our own private interest. Such exhortations as these may be reckoned, next to suffering for Christ ourselves, some of the best proofs of our integrity, and of our true love both of Christ and our friends.
10. The conclusion of that work is admirable. Says Origen, ‘ These0 things I have written unto you according to my ability, praying likewise that they may be of some use to on in the present combat. But if the abundant ~knowledlge of the mysteries of religion, with which you are favoured, especially in your present honourable condition, afl‘ords you better counsel, and more effectual to the urpose, insomuch that you cannot but look upon what I lave offered as childish and contemptible, it is no more than I could wish. My aim is not that you should obtain the crown by my assistance, but by any means whatever. And may it be obtained by what is most divine and excellent, and surpassing all human capacity, the words and wisdom of God.’
‘ Ibid. sect. as. p. 299. E.
m 'thp fipwv s91)er Iqosg rm! szxnv' xat iymg av Simpsv avrqv, 8K epw im'tp aura, aM' inrsp Eav'rww‘ 0mm 6' (in EQJI inrep ram 511 ftp yap'rvpvp fipaw omob‘opquaopwt-m. sect. 41. p. 301. D.
” Taxa. 65 [Cal (Lamp 11me ai'tafl 1's Inca nyopaoen/ch, 11103 Xafiovrog 10 01101111 r0 inrep Trail ova/ta' 0138-); 11‘) nth alps-n Ton! paprvpaw ayopao—
ll. Origen impartially teaches the duties of the pastors, as well as of the people, of Christ’s church. HeP mightily recommends humility and coudescension to bishops and ' presbyters. He complainsq of the ride and haughtiness of some bishops in his time, especial y in great cities. He says it is not to be thought that‘ the clergy will be universally saved; for many presbyters wil erish, and many of the laity will be found among t e blessed. Hell earnestly dissuades from committing the care of churches to covetous, tyrannical, ignorant, and irreligious bishops, or presbyters, or deacons, which he compares to selling doves in the temple: and 'elsewheret declares, that for the most part the government of the churches was bestowed upon men qualified to teach, and of a good life; not upon uch as were ambitious of authority, but upon those who out of modesty were unwilling to accept so great a charge. And he says, more“ will he expected of him, as a presbyter, than of a deacon; more of a deacon than of a layman; but from a bishop most of all. Whence it appears that Origen preached to himself, as well as to others.
III. To these passages, showin the pious disposition of Origen’s mind, and, as I apprehen , strongly recommending
the like to others, I would add a few miscellaneous obser. vations worthy of our notice.
1. Ori en was of opinion that the light of nature, duly cultivate , is of use to bring men to embrace the christian reli ion. For having quoted Rom. ii. 15, he‘1 says, ‘ that Go gave the law of nature to mankind, and wrote it in the minds of all. This affords seeds and rinciples of truth: and if we rightly cultivate those seegs, they will bring forth the fruit of life, through Jesus Christ our Lord.’
2. Origen affirms, ‘ ThatW they are the wisest christians, who have most carefully examined the several sects of judaism and christianity.’
3. Origen was a man of generous sentiments, and he represents the moderation of christians toward men of different opinions as very remarkable. Celsus had said that the several sects of christians were very rigid, and full of enmit toward each other. Origen answers: ‘ Suchx of us as f0 low the doctrine of Jesus, and endeavour to be conformed to his precepts, in our thoughts, words, and actions, “ being reviled, we bless; being persecuted, we sufl'er it; being defamed, we entreat.” Nor doY we say injurious thin s of those who think differently from us. We labour in eed all that is in our power to convert men to the service of the only true God, the creator of the world, and to engage them to act in all respects as they that shall be judged.-+-—But they who consider the words of our Lord, “ Blessed are the peaceable,” and “ Blessed are the meek,” will not hate those2 who corrupt the christian religion, nor give opprobrious names to those who are in error.’
4. Origen believes there will be different degrees of glory an happiness in the future state, according to men’s works in the present world. Having quoted l Thess. iv. 15, 16, 17, he says, ‘ Aa diversity of translation, and a different glory undoubted] will be given to every one, according to the merits of is actions; and every one will be in that order which the merits of his works have procured for him.’
' Quis autem scripsit in COI‘diblE eorum, nisi Deus digito suo? Legem utique naturalem, quam dedit Deus humano generi, et in cunctorum menti~ bus scripsit: unde et initia sumimus, ac semina quaedam ad perscrutandam capimus veritatem: quaa semina, si bene excolamus, fructum vitae afferent in nobis in Christo Jesu Domino nostro. In Numeros Hom. x. T. ii. p. 303. C. Bened- " Obrwg smoip' an Icon 701! £771,45wa widow-a rang Leda'iopa mu xplszawope aipweo'i, uo¢wrarov xplswwov yea/£00m. Contr. Cels. 1. iii. p. 119. Cant. p. 455. C. Bened.
" Contr. Cels. l. v. p. 273. Cant. p. 627. B. C. D. Bened.
7 Kat wc av (317m nu afifm-ra Xeyotpw reg aMa doEaZovrag. Ibid.
2 Ow: av awos'vyrlo'aiev rag THIPGXIIQGTTO‘VTIIQ ru xplsbavw'w, 855 Klpxag xai xvrnepa aiiwha Myoisv reg werhavnpweg. Ibid.
f Diversitas autem translationis et glorize ex meritis sine dubio et aclibus UDIUSCUJUSQUB piazstabitur, et erit unusquisque in eo ordine quem sibi gestorum merita contulerint. In Num. Hom. i. T. ii. p. 277. Bened. b By 55 av ep.-Irodi 'ra wipnenvat T711! Inc's didau'xahtav erg 1raaa11 'rml oucs'tevnv 'ro, roMag awa: flamkuag' a [:0va 5m 'ra wpoetpnpwa, aMa mu 51a 10 avaymzZweat spanned-7m. Kat 1'11rep run! warptdwv wokqmv rag wavraxa. ContrC815. 1. ii. T. ,i. p. 412. D. E. Bened. \
5. He has a fine observation in his books against Celsus: ‘ That when God designed true religion should obtain among the Gentiles, he had so ordered things by his providence, that they should be under the one empire of the Romans; lest, if there had been many kingdoms and nations, the a lostles of Jesus should have been obstructed in fulfilling t e command he gave them, saying, Go and teach all nations. ' It would,’ saysb he, ‘ have been a great impediment to the s reading of the doctrine of Christ all over the world, if there had been many kingdoms. For, not to mention other thin 's, these might have been at war with each other; and t en men would have been obliged to be every where in arms, and fight for the defence of their country.’ . ‘
6. I shall add here but one passage more, concerning the success of the christian doctrine; which, considering the age of our author, is very valuable. When Origen wrote his books a ainst Celsus, the church had peace. ‘ By the good provi ence of God,’ says he, ‘the christian religion
as so flourished, and continually increased, that it is now preached freely, without molestation, although there were a thousand obstacles to the spreading 'the doctrine of Jesus in the world. But as it was the will of God that ‘the Gentiles should have the benefit of it, all the counsels of men against the christians were defeated. And by how ° much the more emperors, and governors of rovinces, and the people, every where strove to depress them; so much the more have they increased, and prevailed exceedingly.’
IV. I now proceed to Origen’s testimony to the books of the New Testament.
In Eusebius’s Ecclesiastical History is a chapter with this title: ‘ How'd Origen'mentions the scriptures of both Testaments.’ The former part of that chapter contains a catalogue of the books of the Old Testament, in a passage of Origen taken from his exposition of the first Psalm; the latter part of the chapter concerns the books of the New Testament. I shall transcribe thi part now at length, though it relates to several parts of the New Testament, and is taken from several pieces of Origen ; that so we may have the benefit of Eusebius’s connection, if indeed there is any benefit in it.
c 'Omp yap au'reg tramway flamkstc, Kat erwv fiyepwot, Kat 61mm. 1ravTllXB, Toasjrw "his; eywovro, mt mflo'xvov a¢05pm—C0nir. Cels. 1. vii. p. 349. Cant. p. 713. A. Bened.
d :Omug raw evdiaemcwu ypa¢wv' epvnpovsvcrw. H. E. lib. vi. cap. 25.
Having then recited Origen’s catalogue of the scriptures of the Old Testament, Eusebius proceeds: ‘ But in the" ‘ first book of his Commentaries upon the gospel of Mat‘ thew, Origen,] observing the ecclesiastical canon, de‘ clares t at he knew only four gospels, expressing himself ‘ thus: “ As I have learned by tradition concerning the ‘ four gospels, which alone are received without dispute by ‘ the whole church of God under heaven. The first was ‘ written by Matthew, once a publican, afterwards an apos‘ tle of Jesus Christ; who delivered it to the Jewish be‘ lievers, composed in the Hebrew language. The second ‘ is that according to Mark, who wrote it as Peter dictated ‘ it to him; who therefore also calls him his son in his caa ‘ tholic e istle, 1 Pet. v. 13, saying, “ The church which is ‘ at Bab on, elected together with on, saluteth you, and ‘ so dot Mark my son.” The third' is that according to ‘ Luke, the gospel commended by Paul, published for the ‘ sake of the Gentile converts. Rom. xvi. 25; 2 Tim. ii. 8. ‘ Lastly, that according to John.” And in the first book ‘ of his ex ositions upon the gospel according to John, the ‘ same author speaks thus of the epistles of the a ostles: ‘ “ Paul,f who was made” an able minister of tie New ‘ Testament, not of the letter, but of the spirit; who fully ‘ preached the gospel from Jerusalem ‘round about unto ‘ lllyricum, “ did not write to all the churches he had ‘ taught; and to those, to which he did write, he sent only ‘ a few lines, 2 Cor. iii. 6; Rom. xv. 19. Peter, on whom t the church of Christ is built,” against which the gates of ‘ hell shall not prevail, “ has left one epistle [universally]
‘ Ibid. p. 226. D. 227.