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VII. From many writers also of the third cen- | pressly cites some of our present histories under tury, and especially from Cyprian, who lived in the title of Gospel, and that not as a name by the middle of it, it is collected that the Christian him first ascribed to them, but as the name by Scriptures were divided into two codes, or volumes, which they were generally known in his time. one called the “Gospels or Scriptures of the Lord," His words are these :—" For the apostles in the the other, the “ Apostles, or Epistles of the Apos- memoirs composed by them, which are called tles.'**
Gospels, have thus delivered it, that Jesus comVIII. Eusebius, as we have already seen, takes manded them to take bread, and give thanks." * some pains to show, that the Gospel of Saint John There exists no doubt, but that, by the memoirs had been justly placed by the ancients the fourth above mentioned, Justin meant our present histoin order, and after the other three. These are rical Scriptures; for throughout his works, he the terms of his proposition: and the very introduc- quotes these, and no others. tion of such an argument proves incontestably, III. Dionysius, bishop of Corinth, who came that the four Gospels had been collected into a thirty years after Justin, in a passage preserved in volume, to the exclusion of every other ; that their Eusebius, (for his works are lost,) speaks of " the order in the volume had been adjusted with much Scriptures of the Lord." + consideration; and that this had been done by IV. And at the same time, or very nearly so, those who were called ancients in the time of Eu- by Irenæus, bishop of Lyons in France, # they sebius.
are called “Divine Scriptures,”
“ Divine OraIn the Diocletian persecution, in the year 303, cles,”—“Scriptures of the Lord,”—“Evangelic the Scriptures were sought out and burnt: # and Apostolic Writings.” $ The quotations of many suffered death rather than deliver them up; Irenæus prove decidedly, that our present Gosand those who betrayed them to the persecutors, pels, and these alone, together with the Acts of were accounted as lapse and apostate. On the the Apostles, were the historical books compreother hand, Constantine, after his conversion, hended by him under these appellations. gave directions for multiplying copies of the Di V. Saint Matthew's Gospel is quoted by Thevine Oracles, and for magnificently adorning them ophilus, bishop of Antioch, contemporary with at the expense of the imperial treasury. S What Irenæus, under the title of the “ Evangelic the Christians of that age so richly embellished Voice;" !! and the copious works of Clement of in their prosperity, and, which is more, so tena- Alexandria, published within fifteen years of the ciously preserved under persecution, was the very same time, ascribed to the books of the New Tesvolume of the New Testament which we now tament the various titles of “ Sacred Books,” read.
“Divine Scriptures,”—“ Divinely inspired Scriptures,”—“Scriptures of the Lord," " the true Evangelical Canon." I
VI. Tertullian, who joins on with Clement, SECTION IV.
beside adopting most of the names and epithets
above noticed, calls the Gospels "our Digestia, Our present Sacred Writings were soon distin- in allusion, as it should seem, to some collection of guished by appropriate names and titles of Roman laws then extant. ** respect.
VII. By Origen, who came thirty years after POLYCARP. “I trust that ye are well exercised Tertullian, the same, and other no less strong in the Holy Scriptures ;-as in these Scriptures titles, are applied to the Christian Scriptures : and, it is said, Be ye angry and sin not, and let not the in addition thereunto, this writer' frequently sun go down on your wrath.”li This passage is speaks of the "Old and New Testament," –"the extremely important; because it proves that, in Ancient and New Scriptures,”—"the Ancient the time of Polycarp, who had liveil with the and New Oracles." ++ apostles, there were Christian writings distin
VIII. In Cyprian, who was not twenty years guished by the name of “Holy Scriptures,” or Sa- later, they are " Books of the Spirit,”—“Divine cred Writings. Moreover, the text quoted by Fountains," “ Fountains of the Divine FulPolycarp is a text found in the collection at this ness.” #1 day. What also the same Polycarp hath else The expressions we have thus quoted, are where quoted in the same manner, may be con- evidences of high and peculiar respect. They sidered as proved to belong to the collection ; and all occur within two centuries from the publithis comprehends Saint Matthew's, and, probably, cation of the books. Some of them commence Saint Luke's Gospel, the Acts of the Apostles, with the companions of the apostles; and they ten epistles of Paul, the First Epistle of Peter, increase in number and variety, through a series and the First of John. I In another place, Poly- of writers touching one upon another, and decarp has these words: “Whoever perverts the duced from the first age of the religion. Oracles of the Lord to his own lusts, and says there is neither resurrection nor judgment, he is the first-born of Satan." **-It does not appear what else Polycarp could mean by the “Oracles
SECTION V. of the Lord,” but those same.“ Holy Scriptures,” Our Scriptures were publicly read and expoundor Sacred Writings, of which he had spoken
ed in the religious ussemblies of the early before.
Christians. II. Justin Martyr, whose apology was written about thirty years after Polycarp's epistle, ex * Lardner, Cred. vol i. p. 271. # Ib. p. 298.
1 The reader will observe the remoteness of these * Lardner, vol. iv. p. 846. † Ib. vol. viii. p. 90. two writers in country and situation. 1 Ib. vol. vii. p. 214, &c. $ Ib. p. 432.
Lardner, vol. i. p. 343, &c. | Ib. p. 427. | Ib. vol. i. p. 203. IT Ib. vol. i. p. 223. T Ib. vol. ii. p. 515.
** Ib. p. 630. tt lb. vol. iii. p. 230. 11 Ib. vol. iv, p. 844.
** Ib. p. 22
Justin MARTYR, who wrote in the year 140, count, the public reading of the Scriptures in the which was seventy or eighty years after some, churches, " where," says he, “is a confluence of and less, probably, after others of the Gospels all sorts of people of both sexes; and where they were published, giving, in his first apology, an ac- hear how they ought to live well in this world, count, to the emperor, of the Christian worship, that they may deserve to live happily and eterhas this remarkable passage:
nally in another." And this custom he declares “ The Memoirs of the Apostles, or the Writ- to be universal : “ The canonical books of Scripings of the Prophets, are read according as the ture being read every where, the miracles therein time allows: and, when the reader has ended, the recorded are well known to all people."* president makes a discourse, exhorting to the imi It does not appear that any books, other than tation of so excellent things." *
our present Scriptures, were thus publicly read, A few short observations will show the value except that the epistle of Clement was read in the of this testimony.
church of Corinth, to which it had been addressed, 1. The “Memoirs of the Apostles," Justin in and in some others; and that the Shepherd of another place expressly tells us, are what are call- Hermas was read in many churches. Nor does ed “Gospels :" and that they were the Gospels it subtract much from the value of the argument, which we now use, is made certain by Justin's that these two writings partly come within it, numerous quotations of them, and his silence because we allow them to be the genuine writabout any others.
ings of apostolical men. There is not the least 2. Justin describes the general usage of the evidence, that any other Gospel, than the four Christian church.
which we receive, was ever admitted to this dis3. Justin does not speak of it as recent or new- tinction. ly instituted, but in the terms in which men speak of established customs.
II. Tertullian, who followed Justin at the distance of about fifty years, in his account of the
SECTION VI. religious assemblies of Christians as they were conducted in his time, says, “We come together Commentaries were anciently written upon the to recollect the Divine Scriptures; we nourish
Scriptures ; harmonies formed out of them; our faith, raise our hope, contirm our trust, by the
different copies carefully collated ; and rersions Sacred Word." +
made of them into different languages. III. Eusebius records of Origen, and cites for his authority the letters of bishops contemporary
No greater proof can be given of the esteem in with Origen, that, when he went into Palestine which these books were holden by the ancient about the year 216, which was only sixteen years Christians, or of the sense then entertained of their after the date of 'Tertullian's testimony, he was value and importance, than the industry bestowed desired by the bishops of that country to discourse upon them. And it ought to be observed, that and expound the Scriptures publicly in the church, the value and importance of these books consisted though he was not yet ordained a presbyter. t entirely in their genuineness and truth. There This anecdote recognises the nsage, not only of was nothing in them, as works of taste, or as comreading, but of expounding the Scriptures; and positions, which could have induced any one to both as subsisting in full force. Origen also him-have written a note upon them. Moreover it self bears witness to the same practice: “ This,” shows that they were even then considered as says he,
we do, when the Scriptures are read ancient books. Men do not write comments in the church, and when the discourse for expli- upon publications of their own times: therefore cation is delivered to the people.” And what is the testimonies cited under this head, afford an a still more ample testimony, many homilies of his evidence which carries up the evangelic writings upon the Scriptures of the New Testament, de much beyond the age of the testimonies themlivered by him in the assemblies of the church, are selves, and to that of their reputed authors. still extant.
I. Tatian, a follower of Justin Martyr, and IV. Cyprian, whose age was not twenty years who flourished about the year 170, composed a 'lower than that of Origen, gives his people an ac
harmony, or collation of the Gospels, which he count of having ordained two persons, who were called Diatessaron, Of the four.f The title, as before confessors, to be readers; and what they well as the work, is remarkable ; because it shows were to read, appears by the reason which he that then, as now, there were four, and only four, gives for bis choice : “ Nothing,” says Cyprian, Gospels in general use with Christians. And this
can be more fit, than that he, who has made a was little more than a hundred years after the glorious confession of the Lord, should read pub- publication of some of them. licly in the church ; that he who has shown him II. Pantænus, of the Alexandrian school, a man self willing to die a martyr, should read the Gospel of great reputation and learning, who came twenof Christ, by which martyrs are made." || ty years after Tatian, wrote many commentaries
V. Intimations of the same custom may be traced upon the Holy Scriptures, which, as Jerome testiin a great number of writers in the beginning fies, were extant in his time. and throughout the whole of the fourth century.
III. Clement of Alexandria wrote short exOf these testimonies I will only use one, as being, plications of many books of the Old and New of itself, express and full. Augustine, who ap
Testament.s peared near the conclusion of the century, displays
IV. Tertullian appeals from the authority of a the benefit of the Christian religion on this very ac- later version, then in use, to the authentic Greek.'
V. An anonymous author, quoted by Eusebius, Lardner, Cred. vol. i. p. 273.
* Lardner, Cred. vol. x. p. 276, et seq. Ib. vol. ii. p. 628.
Tb. vol. iii. p. 68.
1 Ib. p. 455. Ib. A 302.
Ib. vol. iv. p. 842
| Ib. p. 638.
and who appears to have written about the year of learned Christians of that age, to notice the 212, appeals to the ancient copies of the Scrip following: tures, in refutation of some corrupt readings al Eusebius, in the very beginning of the century, leged by the followers of Artemon.*
wrote expressly upon the discrepancies observable VI. "The same Eusebius, mentioning by name in the Gospels, and likewise a treatise, in which several writers of the church who lived at this he pointed out what things are related by four, time, and concerning whom he says, “ There still what by three, what by two, and what by one remain divers monuments of the laudable industry I evangelist.* This author also testifies what is of those ancient and ecclesiastical men” (i. e. of certainly a material piece of evidence, “that the Christian writers who were considered as ancient writings of the apostles had obtained such an esin the year 300,) adds, " There are, besides, trea- teem, as to be translated into every language both tises of many others, whose names we have not of Greeks and Barbarians, and to be diligently been able to learn, orthodox and ecclesiastical studied by all nations.”+ This testimony was men, as the interpretations of the Divine Scrip- given about the year 300; how long before that tures given by each of them show."'+
date these translations were made, does not appear, VII. The last five testimonies may be referred Damasus, bishop of Rome, corresponded with to the year 200; immediately after which, a period Saint Jerome upon the exposition of difficult of thirty years gives us.
texts of Scripture; and, in a letter still remaining, Julius Africanus, who wrote an epistle upon desires Jerome to give him a clear explanation of the apparent difference in the genealogies in Mat- the word Hosanna, found in the New Testament; thew and Luke, which he endeavours to reconcile he (Damasus) having met with very different by the distinction of natural and legal descent, interpretations of it in the Greek and Latin comand conducts his hypothesis with great industry mentaries of Catholic writers which he had read.”I through the whole series of generations... This last clause shows the number and variety of
Ammonius, a learned Alexandrian, who com- commentaries then extant. posed, as Tatian had done, a harmony of the four Gregory of Nyssen, at one time, appeals to the Gospels ; which proves, as 'Tatian's work did, that most exact copies of Saint Mark's Gospel; at there were four Gospels, and no more, at this time another time, compares together, and proposes to in use in the church. It affords also an instance reconcile, the several accounts of the resurrection of the zeal of Christians for those writings, and of given by the four Evangelists ; which limitation their solicitude about them.s
proves, that there were no other histories of Christ And, above both these, Origen, who wrote com- deemed authentic beside these, or included in the mentaries, or homilies, upon most of the books same character with these. This writer observes, included in the New Testament, and upon no acutely enough, that the disposition of the clothes other books but these. In particular, he wrote in the sepulchre, the napkin that was about our upon Saint John's Gospel, very largely upon Saint Saviour's head, not lying with the linen clothes, Matthew's, and commentaries, or homilies, upon but wrapped together in a place by itself, did not the Acts of the Apostles.Il
bespeak the terror and hurry of thieves, and thereVIII. In addition to these, the third century fore refutes the story of the body being stolen. likewise contains
Ambrose, bishop of Milan, remarked various Dionysius of Alexandria, a very learned man, readings in the Latin copies of the New Testawho compared, with great accuracy, the accounts ment, and appeals to the original Greek; in the four Gospels of the time of Christ's resur And Jerome, towards the conclusion of this rection, adding a reflection which showed his century, put forth an edition of the New Testaopinion of their authority: " Let us not think that ment in Latin, corrected, at least as to the Gospels, the evangelists disagree, or contradict each other, by Greek copies, "and those (he says) ancient.” although there be some small difference; but let Lastly, Chrysostom, it is well known, deliverus honestly and faithfully endeavour to reconcile ed and published a great many homilies, or serwhat we read.''
mons; upon the Gospels and the Acts of the Victorin, bishop of Pettaw, in Germany, who Apostles. wrote comments upon Saint Matthew's Gos It is needless to bring down this article lower:
but it is of importance to add, that there is no exLucian, a presbyter of Antioch; and Hesy- ample of Christian writers of the first three centuchius, an Egyptian bishop, who put forth editions ries composing comments upon any other books of the New Testament.
than those which are found in the New TestaIX. The fourth century supplies a cataloguett ment, except the single one of Clement of Alexof fourteen writers, who expended their labours andria commenting upon a book called the Reveupon the books of the New Testament, and whose lation of Peter. works or names are come down to our times; Of the ancient versions of the New Testament, amongst which number it may be sufficient, for one of the most valuable is the Syriac.. Syriac the purpose of showing the sentiments and studies was the language of Palestine when Christianity
was there first established. And although the * Lardner, Cred. vol. iji. p. 46.
books of Scripture were written in Greek, for the
† Ib. vol. ij. p. 551. Ib. vol. iii. p. 170.
§ Ib. vol. iii. p. 122. purpose of a more extended circulation than within Ib. vol. iii. p. 352. 192. 202. 246.
ihe precincts of Judea, yet it is probable that they Tlb vol. iv. p. 166.
** Ib. p. 195. would soon be translated into the vulgar language # Eusebius, Å D. 315 Gregory, Nyssen,
371 of the country where the religion first prevailed. Juvencus, Spain, 330 Didimus of Alex, Theodore, Thrace, Ambrose of Milan,
Accordingly, a Syriac translation is now extant, Hilary, Poictiers, 354 | Diodore of Tarsus, 378 all along, so far as it appears, used by the inhabi
340 Gaudent of Brescia, 387 tants of Syria, bearing many internal marks of Apollinarius of Lao Theodore of Cilicia 362 | Jerome,
* Lardner, Cred. vol. viii. p. 46. Ib. p. 201. Damasus, Rome, 366 Chrysostom,
1 Ib. vol. ix. p. 108.
§ Ib. p. 163
394 392 398
high antiquity, supported in its pretensions by the the other three: on the contrary, it appears tha" uniform traditions of the East, and confirmed by he wrote a commentary upon the Gospel, so com the discovery of many very ancient manuscripts pious as to be divided into twenty-four books.* in the libraries of Europe. It is about 200 years II. The Valentinians appeared about the same since a bishop of Antioch sent a copy of this time. Their heresy consisted in certain notions translation into Europe, to be printed; and this concerning angelic natures, which can hardly be seems to be the first time that the translation be- rendered intelligible to a modern reader. They came generally known to these parts of the world. seem, however, to have acquired as much importThe bishop of Antioch's Testament was found ance as any of the separatists of that early age. to contain all our books, except the second epistle of this sect, Irenæus, who wrote, A. D. 172, exof Peter, the second and third of John, and the pressly records that they endeavoured to fetch arRevelation; which books, however, have since guments for their opinions from the evangelic and been discovered in that language in some ancient apostolic writings. # Heracleon, one of the most manuscripts of Europe. But in this collection, no celebrated of the sect, and who lived probably so other book, beside what is in ours, appears ever to early as the year 125, wrote commentaries upon have had a place. And, which is very worthy Luke and John. Some observations also of his of observation, the text, though preserved in a re- upon Matthew are preserved by Origen. Nor is mote country, and without communication with there any reason to doubt that he received the ours, differs from ours very little, and in nothing whole New Testament. that is important.*
III. The Carpocratians were also an early heresy, little, if at all, later than the two preceding. IT Some of their opinions resembled what we at this
day mean by Socinianism. With respect to the SECTION VII.
Scriptures, they are specifically charged, by IreOur Scriptures were received by ancient Chris- næus and by Epiphanius, with endeavouring to tians of different sects and persuasions, by pervert a passage in Matthew, which amounts to
a positive proof that they received that Gospel.** many Heretics as well as Catholics, and were usually appealed to by both sides in the con- saries, of rejecting any part of the New Testa
Negatively, they are not accused, by their advertroversies which arose in those days.
ment. The three most ancient topics of controversy IV. The Sethians, A. D. 150;t+ the Montaamongst Christians, were, the authority of the nists, A. D. 156;#the Marcosians, A. D. 160;SS Jewish constitution, the origin of evil, and the Hermogenes, A. D. 180 ;||
Praxias, A. D. 196;79 nature of Christ. Upon the first of these we find, Artemon, A. D. 200 ;*** Theodotus, A. D. 200; in very early times, one class of heretics rejecting all included under the denomination of heretics, the Old Testament entirely; another contending and all engaged in controversies with Catholic for the obligation of its law, in all its parts, Christians, received the Scriptures of the New throughout its whole extent, and over every one Testament. who sought acceptance with God. Upon the two V. Tatian, who lived in the year 172, went latter subjects, a natural, perhaps, and venial, but into many extravagant opinions, was the founder a fruitless, eager, and impatient curiosity, prompt. of a sect called Encratites, and was deeply ined by the philosophy and by the scholastic habits volved in disputes with the Christians of that age; of the age, which carried men much into bold hy- yet Tatian so received the four Gospels, as to potheses and conjectural solutions, raised, amongst compose a harinony from them. some who professed Christianity, very wild and VI. From a writer, quoted by Eusebius, of unfounded opinions. I think there is no reason about the year 300, it is apparent that they who at to believe that the number of these bore any consi- that time contended for the mere humanity of derable proportion to the body of the Christian Christ, argued from the Scriptures; for they are church; and amidst the disputes which such accused by this writer, of making alterations in opinions necessarily occasioned, it is a great satis- their copies, in order to favour their opinions.ttt faction to perceive, what, in a vast plurality of in VII. Origen's sentiments excited great controstances, we do perceive, all sides recurring to the versies,—the bishops of Rome and Alexandria, same Scriptures.
and many others, condemning, the bishops of the + I. Basilides lived near the age of the apostles, East espousing them; yet there is not the smallest about the year 120, or, perhaps, sooner.I He re- question, but that both the advocates and adversajected the Jewish institution, not as spurious, but ries of these opinions acknowledged the same auas proceeding from a being inferior to the true thority of Scripture. In his time, which the reader God; and in other respects advanced a scheme of will remember was about one hundred and fifty theology widely different from the general doctrine years after the Scriptures were published, many of the Christian church, and which, as it gained dissensions subsisted amongst Christians, with over some disciples, was warmly opposed by which they were reproached by Celsus ; yet OriChristian writers of the second and third century. gen, who has recorded this accusation without In these writings, there is positive evidence that contradicting it, nevertheless testifies, that the four Basilides received the Gospel of Matthew; and Gospels were received without dispute, by the there is no sufficient proof that he rejected any of whole church of God under heaven. Itt
* Jones on the Canon, vol. i. c. 14.
The materials of the former part of this section are taken from Dr. Lardner's History of the Heretics of the two first Centuries, published since his death, with ad. ditions, by the Rev. Mr. Hogg, of Exeter, and inserted into the ninth volume of his works, of the edition of 1778.
1 Lardner, vol. ix. ed. 1788, p. 271.
* Lardner, vol. ix. ed. 1788, p. 305, 306.
i Ib. vol. i.
383. SIb, vol. ix. ed. 1788, p. 352. Ib. p. 353. Ib. 309.
** Ib. 318. # Ib. 455. 11 Ib. 482. 88 Tb. 348. || Ib. 473. 11 Ib. 433.
***Ib. 466. At Ib. vol. iii. p. 16 111 Ib. vol. iv. p. 642.
VIII. Paul of Samosata, about thirty years after controversy, which arose soon after the Origen, so distinguished himself in the controver- both sides appealed to the same Scriptures, and sy concerning the nature of Christ, as to be the with equal professions of deference and regard. subject of two councils or synods, assembled at The Arians, in their council of Antioch, A. D. Antioch upon his opinions. Yet he is not charged | 341, pronounce, that, “if any one, contrary to the by his adversaries with rejecting any book of the sound doctrine of the Scriptures, say, that the Son New Testament. On the contrary, Epiphanius, is a creature, as one of the creatures, let him be who wrote a history of heretics a hundred years an anathema.”* They and the Athanasians muafterward, says, that Paul endeavoured to support tually accuse each other of using unscriptural his doctrine by texts of Scripture. And Vincen- phrases; which was a mutual acknowledgment of tius Lirinensis, A. D. 434, speaking of Paul and the conclusive authority of Scripture. other heretics of the same age, has these words : XIV. The Priscillianists, A. D. 378,+ the Pe" Here, perhaps, some one may ask, whether he- lagians, A. D. 405,4 received the same Scriptures retics also urge the testimony of Scripture. They as we do. urge it indeed, explicitly and vehemently; for you XV. The testimony of Chrysostom, who lived may see them flying through every book of the near the year 400, is so positive in affirmation of sacred law."*
the proposition which we maintain, that may IX. A controversy at the same time existed form a proper conclusion of the argument." The with the Noëtians or Sabellians, who seem to general reception of the Gospels is a proof that have gone into the opposite extreme from that of their history is true and consistent; for, since the Pau of Samosata and his followers. Yet, accord-writings of the Gospels, many heresies have arisen, ing to the express testimony of Epiphanius, Sa- holding opinions contrary to what is contained in bellius received all the Scriptures. And with them, who yet received the Gospels either entire both sects Catholic writers constantly allege the or in part."'s' I am not moved by what may seem Scriptures, and reply to the arguments which a deduction from Chrysostom's testimony, the their opponents drew from particular texts. words, "entire or in part;" for, if all the parts,
We have here, therefore, a proof, that parties, which were ever questioned in our Gospels, were who were the most opposite and irreconcilable to given up, it would not affect the miraculous orione another, acknowledged the authority of Scrip- gin of the religion in the smallest degree : e. g. ture with equal deference..
Cerinthus is said by Epiphanius to have reX. And as a general testimony to the same ceived the Gospel of Matthew, but not entire. point, may be produced what was said by one of What the omissions were, does not appear. The the bishops of the council of Carthage, which was common opinion, that he rejected the first two holden a little before this time, -"I am of opinion chapters, seems to have been a mistake.ll It is that the blasphemous and wicked heretics, who agreed, however, by all who have given any acpertert the sacred and adorable words of the count of Cerinthus, that he taught that the Holy Scriptures, should be execrated. Undoubtedly Ghost (whether he meant by that name a person what they perverted they received.
or a power) descended upon Jesus at his baptism; XI. The Millennium, Novatianism, the baptism that Jesus from this time performed many miraof heretics, the keeping of Easter, engaged also cles, and that he appeared after his death. He the attention and divided the opinions of Chris- must have retained therefore the essential parts tians, at and before that time (and, by the way, it of the history. may be observed, that such disputes, though on Of all the ancient heretics, the most extraordisome accounts to be blamed, showed how much nary was Marcion. One of his tenets was the men were in earnest upon the subject); yet every rejection of the Old Testament, as proceeding one appealed for the grounds of his opinion to from an inferior and imperfect deity: and in purScripture authority. Dionysius of Alexandria, suance of this hypothesis he erased from the New, who flourished A. D. 247, describing a conference and that, as it should seem, without entering into or public disputation with the Millennarians of any critical reasons, every passage which recogEgypt, confesses of them, though their adversary, nised the Jewish Scriptures. He spared not a " that they embrace whatever could be made out text which contradicted his opinion. It is reasonby good arguments from the Holy Scriptures.": able to believe that Marcion treated books as he Novatus, X. D. 251, distinguished by some rigid treated texts; yet this rash and wild controversialsentiments concerning the reception of those who ist published a recension, or chastised edition, of had lapsed, and the founder of a numerous sect, Saint Luke's Gospel, containing the leading facts, in his few remaining works quotes the Gospel and all which is necessary to authenticate the rewith the same respect as other Christians did; ligion. This example affords proof, that there and concerning his followers, the testimony of were always some points, and those the main Socrates, who wrote about the year 440, is posi- points, which neither wildness nor rashness, neitive, riz: “ That in the disputes between the Cather the fury of opposition nor the intemperance tholics and them, each side endeavoured to sup- of controversy, would venture to call in question. port itself by the authority of the divine Scrip. There is no reason to believe that Marcion, though tures."
full of resentment against the Catholic Christians, XIJ. The Donatists, who sprung up in the ever charged them with forging their books. “The year 328, used the same Scriptures as we do. Gospel of Saint Matthew, the Epistle to the HeProduce (saith Augustine) soine proof from the brews, with those of Saint Peter and Saint James, Scriptures, whose authority is common to us both."as well as the Old Testament in general (he said,) XIII. It is perfectly notorious that, in the Arian
• Lardner, Cred. vol. vii. p. 277. * Lardner, vol. xi. p. 158. Ib. vol. xi. p. 839.
Ib. vol. ix. p. 325. | 1b. vol. xi. p. 52. 1 lb. vol. iv. p. 666. § Ib. vol. v. p. 105.
Ib. vol. x. p. 316. | Ib. vol. ix. ed. 1788, p. 222. Ib. vol. vii. p. 243.
Ib. sect. ii. c. I. Also Michael. vol. i. c. i. sect. xviii