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φας είχεν. ο δε 'Ωριγένην ανέπνεεν. vii. 6. Ούδέ ' Πλάτων, says he, το δεύτερον και το τρίτον αίτιον, ως αυτός ονομάζειν είωθεν, αρχήν υπάρξεως ειληφέναι φησί και 'Ωριγένης συναΐδιον σαλαχε ομολοgei tèr yòr tớ 11c7pí. Etenim nec Plato secundam ac tertiam Causam, ut ipse quidem nominare solet, existendi initium cepisse dicit: Et Origenes passim in libris suis Filium Patri coætérnum esse confitetur.

He adds, that these two eloquent and learned ecclesiastics, though they continued in their own church, mended and improved the Arians not a little, and brought them nearer to the Consubstantialists. Both sides wanted mending very much, and to be taught to differ and dispute at least like Christians, and not to pull out one ano

ther's eyes.

The Arians and the Consubstantialists * both laid claim to Origen, as favouring their systems, and neither side wanted arguments drawn from his writings ; for, on the one hand, Origen admitted the eternity of the óyos, and, on the other hand, he said many things concerning the sóyos, which seemed agreeable to the Semi-Arian doctrines.

Origen was a Platonic Christian, and a Platonist would have readily allowed that the Aéyos was an eternal emanation, or production from the First Cause, the To "Er.

Cudworth hath made it probable that some notion of a trinity obtained in the Pagan world. It is to be found even amongst the Chinese, if the accounts given us of that nation may be credited. Whence had the Pagans this notion ? From the first chapter of Genesis, say some persons. Let them by all means enjoy their opinion, if they can refrain from anathematizing those who differ from them, and not imitate the sage council of Sirmium, which anathematized all those who should dare to deny that God the Father spake to his Son, when he said, Let us make man, &c. Socrates H. E. ii. 30.

tizing * One part of them, I mean : for others condemned him as a father of Arianism.

The Platonic philosophers, when they considered the visible, and vital, and intellectual system, found that, besides sluggish and inanimate matter, which has a shadowy being, and is a small remove above nothing, there existed in the universe, life and active power; above that, reason, understanding, wisdom; above that, goodness, above which there could be no imaginable perfection. The same things they found in every man who acts according to his nature, namely, life, reason, and goodness. Tracing effects up to their causes, and proceeding in the ascending scale, above all other beings they placed as principles, a Yuxn, above that a sáyes, and above both a Tò "Ev vai 'Alatór. These notions the Platonics ascribed to their master; but it must be confessed that Plato talks very obscurely upon the subject.

The emperor Julian, who rejected Clirist, did not reject the notion of a sógos. His Néyos was the sun, whom he accounted to be the visible image of the invisible God, whilst he perversely shut his eyes against the Sun of righteousness that arose on a benighted world with salvation in his rays.

Erasmus was one of those who had a high esteem for Origen. Plus me docet, says he, Christiance philosophice unica Origenis pagina, quum decem Augustini. This is an honourable testimony for Origen ; it is Laurlari a viro laudato.

Gregory, called Thaumaturgus, a disciple of Origen, is said to have wrought many miracles ; but Eusebius,




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who makes honourable mention of him, says not a word concerning them, which is remarkable ; and some of them are of a very suspicious kind, as his writing laconic epistles to Satan, and laying commands upon him, which were punctually obeyed. This is full as probable as that the bones of Babylas drove the devil from Daphne, though both these ingenious stories, with others of the same kind, are defended by Tillemont, and by Father Baltus, and the latter by Cave, and by many other writers. The relators of Gregory's miracles lived when romancing was much in fashion, as Socrates, Theodoret, Rufinus ; and also Gregory of Nyssa who wrote his life, and this Gregory's brother, Basil, who had learned many of these stories from their grandmother Macrina. Gregory Nyssen says also that the apostle St John, at the request of the Virgin Mary, presented Thaumaturgus with a creed *, which the saint wrote down immediately, and ever after made use of, as well he might, and transmitted it to posterity. The story seems to have been borrowed from the transactions between Numa and the goddess Egeria; and both are equally credible. This &.0 élès @yanna, this symbol dropt from the clouds, which must needs be a wonderful curiosity, is still extant, to our great benefit, and may be seen (though it cannot be warranted free from interpolations,) in Fabricius, Bibl. Greec. v. p. 249. or in Cave's Life of Gregory. Here arises no small difficulty, the solution of which shall be left to those whoin it concerns : If the Christians of the fourth and following centuries were satisfied with the truth of this narration, they should certainly have drawn up no new Creeds, but have rested


* See Waterland's Importance, &c. p. 232. Berriman's Hisi. Acc. of the Trin. Contr. p. 138. 1411 Middleton's Inquiry, p. 148.

contented with a truly apostolical symbol, and not have had the vanity to think that they could compose a better than St John's.

Many of these celestial gifts * were bestowed in better days upon mortal men. Pachomius, a monk of the fourth century, received from an angel a table of brass, containing rules for the monastic order. The fact is related by Cyril of Alexandria, by Palladius Lausiac. 38. by Sozomen iii. 14. and by Gennadius Vit. Patr. Be it as it will, says Du Pin, for although this story be reported by many Authors, I cannot think that we are absolutely obliged to believe it. Saint Pacome.

In the eighth century some monks pretended that the angel Gabriel had brought twelve articles from heaven, one of which was, that ecclesiastics must not marry. A thirteenth should have been added, thus they might keep concubines, Bibl. Univers. xii. p. 376.

In the twelfth century an angel brought from heaven a book of prophecies upon copper plates, and gave it to a priest called Cyril, who gave it 10 Abbot Joachim. Bibl. Univ. xi. p. 13.

In Fabricius there is an epistle of Jesus Christ which was said to fall from heaven. Cod. Apocr. N. T. p. 307. But this is an imposture too profane to be laughed at.

Not only the ancient Pagan legislators, but the heretics also had the start of the Catholics in this curious device. An obscure sect of men called Helcesait, Citrov Tsvce péproir, rv aéyrouvé spars xclanelwxérce, produce a book which they affirm to huve fallen from heuren, says Origen upud Euseb. vi. 38. B b 2


See more of these Christian frauds in Beausobre, Hist, de Marish.

i. p. 338.

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It is affirmed, that there is no reason to reject it; that when Gregory was made bishop, Neocæsarea and its neiglıbourhood, consisted almost entirely of Pagans; and that when he died he left it as full of Christians, whom he had converted, and who retained a great and lasting respect for his memory, which was honoured, says Socrates, in Athens, Berytus, Pontus, and indeed in all the earth.

In the third century began the Manichæan heresy, of which I shall give an account extracted from Beausobre, who has fully discussed the subject in his History of Manichæism, and cleared it from abundance of lies and forgeries.

The Manichæans fell into great errors, and strangely corrupted the Christian faith ; but they were much misrepresented, and cruelly treated by their adversaries, which probably was the case of many other ancient heretics.

The Christians of every sect and denomination, the eastern Pagans, the Mahometans, and the Jews, have all agreed in hating the Manichæans.

Their books are lost ; for it was an old custom with the Christians to burn heretical writings, and to forbid the reading of them.

The accounts therefore which we have of ancient heretics are usually very imperfect, and not to be depended upon; for the Orthodox, either through resentment or ignorance, have not done them justice.

Manichæus pretended to be an apostle of Jesus Christ, and a prophet illuminated by the Paraciete, to reform all religions, and to reveal those truths which our Saviour thought it not proper to commit to his first disciples. This was his imposture, or his fanaticism :


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