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are, indeed, the very same words; only with that grammatical alteration which was necessary to fit them to the circumstances; that is, to the application which Ignatius makes of them to himself, and his readers.
The next writer, from whom Michaelis in vain attempts to extract evidence in support of his views of this question, is the old Syriac translator. But it is clearly shown by the learned annotator upon Michaelis's Introduction, that the Syriac version cannot be proved to be of this early date, since the first notice of it is by Ephrem, who wrote in in the fourth century. It cannot, therefore, be admitted as an evidence belonging to these early Christian times.
HERMAS, or the writer bearing that name, is not mentioned by Michaelis. But Lardner has produced some passages from this book, from which he is inclined to think that Hermas had seen and imitated the Apocalypse. They do not appear to me in this light, nor can we expect it; for Hermas wrote in the first century; Lardner says, towards the end of it; some mention the year 75, others 92: and as the book was written at Rome, it is not likely that the author of it could have seen the Apocalypse, which began to be circulated in Asia only in 97. If, then, Herinas wrote before he could see the Apocalypse, his silence is no evidence against its authenticity; but it may be taken, as a proof additional, that the Apocalypse was not published before the date now assigned to it.
POLYCARP has not been cited as an evidence in the question before us. He is reported by Irenæus to have written many epistles, only one of which has come down to our times. This is so replete with practical exhortations, that there is little reason to expect in it quotations from a mystical book. We
1 Vol. i. ch. 7. sect. 6,
have, however, other reasons for concluding that Polycarp received the Apocalypse as of divine authority; because Irenæus, who so received it, constantly appeals to him and the Asiatic Churches, over one of which Polycarp presided,—for the truth of his assertions. This apostolical man suffered martyrdom, about seventy years after the Apocalypse had been published. An interesting account of this is given in an epistle written from the Church of Smyrna, over which he had presided. In this epistle, part of which is reported by Eusebius, there seem to be some allusions to the Apocalypse, which have hitherto escaped cbservation; and if the Apocalypse was received by the Church of Smyrna at the time of Polycarp's death, as of divine authority, there can be no doubt but that it was so received by him, their aged bishop and instructor.
In the EPISTLE, The fect of the Son of Man are The body of the suffering martyr is deseribed,
represented, Ομοιοι χαλκολιβανω ώς εν καμινω πεπυρ- Ουκ ώς σαρξ καιομενη, αλλ' ώς χρυσος και
In Rev. i. 15.
αργυρος εν καμίνω πυρωμενοι. .
That the writer did not use the word χαλκολιβανος, , may be accounted for, by his having in view, at the same time, another passage of Scripture, 1 Peter, i. 7, where the apostle compares the suffering Christians to “gold tried by the fire.” But why did he, after having used the word gold, omit the dia
πυρος dokiuaLouevou of St. Peter, to substitute xv kapuvų TUPwuevou ? Why? But because he was led to it by this passage of the Apocalypse ? Besides, in Rev. iii. 18, we read also χρυσίον πεπυρωμενον εκ πυρος.
The pious and sublime prayer of Polycarp, at the awful moment when the fire was about to be lighted under him, begins with these words: Kupie, ó Okoç, ο παντοκρατωρ. They are the identical words in the
1 Hist. Eccl. lib. iv. c. 15.
prayer of the Elders, Rev. xi. 17. Κυριε, ο θεος, ο παντοκράτωρ. .
From these instances, some additional confirmation may be derived, that Polycarp, and his disciples of the Church of Smyrna, received the Apocalypse.
Papias belongs also to the apostolical age, and is said to have been an auditor of St. John. He is asserted by Andreas, bishop of Cæsarea in the fifth century, to have given his testimony to the Apocalypse,' and is classed by this writer in the list of those who have undoubtedly testified in its favour, with Irenæus, Methodius, and Hippolitus. What writings of Papias had come down to the time of Andreas, we know not; we have only a few short fragments preserved by Eusebius. In these there is no mention of the Apocalypse : they treat of other subjects, of the Gospels chiefly; and to two only of the four Gospels has Papias given any evidence. But no one has hence inferred that he rejected them. Yet, as his writings have reference to the Gospels, the evidence of those neglected by him is more affected by his silence, than that of the Apocalypse, which formed no part of his subject. The same is the case with the quotations from the Epistles of the New Testament by Papias. According to Eusebius, he has left quotations from only two of them, the first of St. Peter, and the first of St. John. Yet no one has supposed that he rejected the other Epistles of the sacred canon. firms these which he has mentioned,
Lardner, without prejudicing the rest." 4
Upon the same footing stands his silence concern
ri He con
i Irenæus, lib. v. 33. Eusebius, H. E. lib. iii. c. 29. 2 Proleg. ad Apoc. 3 H. E. lib.iii. c. 39. 4 Cred. Gosp. Hist. art. Papias.
ing the Apocalypse. This silence, in these short fragments of his works, would be no evidence against it, even if we had no assurance that he received it as holy writ. But such assurance we have from Andreas of Cæsarea.
Justin Martyr was contemporary with the apostolical Fathers whose evidence we have been reviewing. His testimony is full, positive, indubitable. He accounted the Apocalypse to be the production “ of John, one of the apostles of Christ.” He names expressly this John as the writer of it.” He appears also, from the report of Jerome, to have commented on some parts of this mystical book ; but no work of this kind has come down to us.
ATHENAGORAS, contemporary with Polycarp and Justin Martyr, is admitted by Michaelis to have been acquainted with the Apocalypse.
Michaelis has passed over in silence the evidence obtained from that valuable remnant of ecclesiastical antiquity, The EPISTLE FROM THE Gallic CHURCHES, which relates the sufferings of their martyrs, about the year 177, eighty years after the publication of the Apocalypse. We owe to Eusebius the preservation of a great part of this letter, in which Lardner has remarked this passage, AkodsOwv το Αρνιω οπε αν υπαγη. They are the very words of the Apocalypse, (ch. xiv. 4.), and so peculiar in idea and expression, as evidently to be derived from no other source. To this quotation, and another
1 From this testimony we collect, that Papias had commented upon the Apocalypse : en detews on the text. See cap. xxxiv. Serm. xii. of And. Cæs. Some other objections of Michaelis are reported in the Dissertation, and there answered, it is hoped, satisfactorily. But as they are of a minor character, there is no need to abridge them here.
2 Dialog. cum. Tryphone, lib. vi. c. 20. 3 Catal. Script. Eccles. c. 9.
4 This Epistle is supposed by some to be written by Irenæus, at that time a member of that church, but there is no proof of this.
reported in the Dissertation, I have added a third, which had not been noticed before. In Rev. i. 5. i:i. 14.
In the Epistle, Our Lord Jesus Christ is called The martyrs give place to Jesus Christ, as, Ο μαρτυρ,
και πιστος,και αληθινος, και Τω πιστω και αληθινά μαρτυρι, και προτοτοκος εκ των νεκρων. .
προτοτοκωτων νεκρων. . The perusal of these quotations cannot fail to convince us that the Churches of Gaul received the Apocalypse into their canon; and their testimony is of the greater importance in this inquiry, because these Churches received their articles of faith from the Churches in Asia. The epistle is addressed to the Churches of Asia and Phrygia. And there appears to have been another epistle, from the martyrs, with the same address, but on a different subject, written at the same time. The Gallic Churches render account to those of Asia, as colonies to their mother country. They agreed with them in receiving the Apocalypse as of divine authority, otherwise they could not have quoted from it as such. The Church of Lyons had received her venerable bishop Pothinus from Asia,' who being martyred at the age of ninety years, was succeeded by the Asiatic Irenæus. It is important to impress this fact, that the Churches, colonized from the Seven Churches in Asia, received the Apocalypse as a divine book.
Melito, after some hesitation, is admitted by Michaelis as a witness in favour of the Apocalypse. He is stated to have flourished about the year 170," and might be living at the time the Gallic Epistle was received by the Asiatic Churches, of one of which (Sardis) he was bishop. He was a bishop of the highest reputation in the Christian world, according to the testimonies of Polycrates, Tertullian, and Eusebius. He wrote upon the Apocalypse,
| Mosheim, Eccl. Hist. Cent. ii. part 1. ch. 1. 2 Cave, Hist. Lit. 3 Euseb. lib. iv. c. 26. Hierom. Proleg. 327.