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Chapter 20 [VIII.]—The Testimonies of the Ancients Against the Pelagians.

But since they say “that their enemies have taken up our words for hatred of the truth,” and complained that “throughout nearly the whole of the West a dogma not less foolish than impious is taken up, and from simple bishops sitting in their places without a Synodal congregation a subscription is extorted to confirm this dogma,”—although the Church of Christ, both Western and Eastern shuddered at the profane novelties of their words—I think it belongs to my care not only to avail myself of the sacred canonical Scriptures as witnesses against them, which I have already sufficiently done, but, moreover, to bring forward some proofs from the writings of the holy men who before us have treated upon those Scriptures with the most widespread reputation and great glory. Not that I would put the authority of any controversialist on a level with the canonical books, as if there were nothing which is better or more truly thought by one catholic than by another who likewise is a catholic; but that those may be admonished who think that these men say anything as it used to be said, before their empty talk on these subjects, by catholic teachers following the divine oracles, and may know that the true and anciently established catholic faith is by us defended against the receding presumption and mischief of the Pelagian heretics.

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