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Chapter XXI.—The System of Cerinthus Concerning Christ.

But a certain Cerinthus,884884    See [vol. i. pp. 351, 415] Irenæus, i. 26, iii. 2, 3; [vol. iii. p. 651] Tertullian, Præscript., c. xlviii.; Eusebius, Hist. Ecclesiast., iii. 28, vii. 25; Epiphanius, Hær., xxviii.; Theodoret, Hær. Fab., ii. 3; St. Augustine, Hær., c. viii.; and St. Jerome, Ep., lxxxix. We have here, as in the preceding articles, Irenæus in the Greek, as Hippolytus’ text corresponds with the Latin version of this portion of Irenæus’ work. himself being disciplined in the teaching of the Egyptians, asserted that the world was not made by the primal Deity, but by some virtue which was an offshoot from that Power which is above all things, and which (yet) is ignorant of the God that is above all. And he supposed that Jesus was not generated from a virgin, but that he was born son of Joseph and Mary, just in a manner similar with the rest of men, and that (Jesus) was more just and more wise (than all the human race). And (Cerinthus alleges) that, after the baptism (of our Lord), Christ in form of a dove came down upon him, from that absolute sovereignty which is above all things. And then, (according to this heretic,) Jesus proceeded to preach the unknown Father,885885    Acts xvii. 23. and in attestation (of his mission) to work miracles. It was, however, (the opinion of Cerinthus,) that ultimately Christ departed from Jesus, and that Jesus suffered and rose again; whereas that Christ, being spiritual,886886    Or, “paternal.” remained beyond the possibility of suffering.


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