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§ 129. Saturninus (Satornilos).


Iren. I. 24, § 1, 2; ch. 28. Hippol. VII. 3, 28 (depending on Iren.). Tert. Praesc. Haer. 46. Hegesippus in Euseb. IV. 22, 29. Epiph. Haer. XXIII. Theod. Fab. Haer. I. 3. Comp. Möller, l c., p. 367–373.


Contemporary with Basilides under Hadrian, was Saturninus or Satornilos90906906    This second form, says Renan (L’égl. chrét, p. 177), is common in inscription. in Antioch. He was, like him, a pupil of Menander. His system is distinguished for its bold dualism between God and Satan, the two antipodes of the universe, and for its ascetic severity.907907    So Mosheim, Neander, Baur, Gieseler, Renan. But Möller (p. 371) disputes the dualism of Saturninus, and maintains that Satan and the God of the Jew, ; are alike subordinate, though antagonistic beings. But so is Ahriman in the Parsee dualism, and the Demiurge in all the Gnostic systems.07 God is the unfathomable abyss, absolutely unknown (θεὸς ἄγνωστος). From him emanates by degrees the spirit-world of light, with angels, archangels, powers, and dominions. On the lowest degree, are the seven planetary spirits (ἄγγελοι κοσμοκράτορες) with the Demiurge or God of the Jews at the head. Satan, as the ruler of the hyle, is eternally opposed to the realm of light. The seven planetary spirits invade the realm of Satan, and form out of a part of the hyle the material world with man, who is filled by the highest God with a spark of light (σπινθήρ). Satan creates in opposition a hylic race of men, and incessantly pursues the spiritual race with his demons and false prophets. The Jewish God, with his prophets, is unable to overcome him. Finally the good God sends the aeon Nous in an unreal body, as Soter on earth, who teaches the spiritual men by gnosis and strict abstinence from marriage and carnal food to emancipate themselves from the vexations of Satan, and also from the dominion of the Jewish God and his star-spirits, and to rise to the realm of light.



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