Table of Contents

Title Page


Introductory Note to the First Epistle of Clement to the Corinthians

First Epistle to the Corinthians

Chapter I.—The salutation. Praise of the Corinthians before the breaking forth of schism among them.

Chapter II.—Praise of the Corinthians continued.

Chapter III.—The sad state of the Corinthian church after sedition arose in it from envy and emulation.

Chapter IV.—Many evils have already flowed from this source in ancient times.

Chapter V.—No less evils have arisen from the same source in the most recent times. The martyrdom of Peter and Paul.

Chapter VI.—Continuation. Several other martyrs.

Chapter VII.—An exhortation to repentance.

Chapter VIII.—Continuation respecting repentance.

Chapter IX.—Examples of the saints.

Chapter X.—Continuation of the above.

Chapter XI.—Continuation. Lot.

Chapter XII.—The rewards of faith and hospitality. Rahab.

Chapter XIII.—An exhortation to humility.

Chapter XIV.—We should obey God rather than the authors of sedition.

Chapter XV.—We must adhere to those who cultivate peace, not to those who merely pretend to do so.

Chapter XVI.—Christ as an example of humility.

Chapter XVII.—The saints as examples of humility.

Chapter XVIII.—David as an example of humility.

Chapter XIX.—Imitating these examples, let us seek after peace.

Chapter XX.—The peace and harmony of the universe.

Chapter XXI.—Let us obey God, and not the authors of sedition.

Chapter XXII.—These exhortations are confirmed by the Christian faith, which proclaims the misery of sinful conduct.

Chapter XXIII.—Be humble, and believe that Christ will come again.

Chapter XXIV.—God continually shows us in nature that there will be a resurrection.

Chapter XXV.—The phœnix an emblem of our resurrection.

Chapter XXVI.—We shall rise again, then, as the Scripture also testifies.

Chapter XXVII.—In the hope of the resurrection, let us cleave to the omnipotent and omniscient God.

Chapter XXVIII.—God sees all things: therefore let us avoid transgression.

Chapter XXIX.—Let us also draw near to God in purity of heart.

Chapter XXX.—Let us do those things that please God, and flee from those He hates, that we may be blessed.

Chapter XXXI.—Let us see by what means we may obtain the divine blessing.

Chapter XXXII.—We are justified not by our own works, but by faith.

Chapter XXXIII.—But let us not give up the practice of good works and love. God Himself is an example to us of good works.

Chapter XXXIV.—Great is the reward of good works with God. Joined together in harmony, let us implore that reward from Him.

Chapter XXXV.—Immense is this reward. How shall we obtain it?

Chapter XXXVI.—All blessings are given to us through Christ.

Chapter XXXVII.—Christ is our leader, and we His soldiers.

Chapter XXXVIII.—Let the members of the Church submit themselves, and no one exalt himself above another.

Chapter XXXIX.—There is no reason for self-conceit.

Chapter XL.—Let us preserve in the Church the order appointed by God.

Chapter XLI.—Continuation of the same subject.

Chapter XLII.—The order of ministers in the Church.

Chapter XLIII.—Moses of old stilled the contention which arose concerning the priestly dignity.

Chapter XLIV.—The ordinances of the apostles, that there might be no contention respecting the priestly office.

Chapter XLV.—It is the part of the wicked to vex the righteous.

Chapter XLVI.—Let us cleave to the righteous: your strife is pernicious.

Chapter XLVII.—Your recent discord is worse than the former which took place in the times of Paul.

Chapter XLVIII.—Let us return to the practice of brotherly love.

Chapter XLIX.—The praise of love.

Chapter L.—Let us pray to be thought worthy of love.

Chapter LI.—Let the partakers in strife acknowledge their sins.

Chapter LII.—Such a confession is pleasing to God.

Chapter LIII.—The love of Moses towards his people.

Chapter LIV.—He who is full of love will incur every loss, that peace may be restored to the Church.

Chapter LV.—Examples of such love.

Chapter LVI.—Let us admonish and correct one another.

Chapter LVII.—Let the authors of sedition submit themselves.

Chapter LVIII.—Blessings sought for all that call upon God.

Chapter LIX.—The Corinthians are exhorted speedily to send back word that peace has been restored. The benediction.



Introductory Note to the Epistle of Polycarp to the Philippians

Epistle to the Philippians

Introductory Note to the Martyrdom of Polycarp

The Martyrdom of Polycarp


Introductory Note to the Epistles of Ignatius

Epistle to the Ephesians: Shorter and Longer Versions

Epistle to the Magnesians: Shorter and Longer Versions

Epistle to the Trallians: Shorter and Longer Versions

Epistle to the Romans: Shorter and Longer Versions

Epistle to the Philadelphians: Shorter and Longer Versions

Epistle to the Smyrnæans: Shorter and Longer Versions

Epistle to Polycarp: Shorter and Longer Versions

Introductory Note to the Syriac Version of the Ignatian Epistles

Epistle to Polycarp: Syriac Version

Epistle to the Ephesians: Syriac Version

Epistle to the Romans: Syriac Version

Introductory Note to the Spurious Epistles of Ignatius

Epistle to the Tarsians

Epistle to the Antiochians

Epistle to Hero, a Deacon of Antioch

Epistle to the Philippians

Epistle from Maria of Cassobelæ

Epistle to Mary at Neapolis

First Epistle to St John

Second Epistle to St John

Epistle to Mary the Virgin

Epistle from Mary the Virgin

Introductory Note to the Martyrdom of Ignatius

The Martyrdom of Ignatius




Introductory Note to the Writings of Justin Martyr

The First Apology

Chapter I.—Address.

Chapter II.—Justice demanded.

Chapter III.—Claim of judicial investigation.

Chapter IV.—Christians unjustly condemned for their mere name.

Chapter V.—Christians charged with atheism.

Chapter VI.—Charge of atheism refuted.

Chapter VII.—Each Christian must be tried by his own life.

Chapter VIII.—Christians confess their faith in God.

Chapter IX.—Folly of idol worship.

Chapter X.—How God is to be served.

Chapter XI.—What kingdom Christians look for.

Chapter XII.—Christians live as under God’s eye.

Chapter XIII.—Christians serve God rationally.

Chapter XIV.—The demons misrepresent Christian doctrine.

Chapter XV.—What Christ himself taught.

Chapter XVI.—Concerning patience and swearing.

Chapter XVII.—Christ taught civil obedience.

Chapter XVIII.—Proof of immortality and the resurrection.

Chapter XIX.—The resurrection possible.

Chapter XX.—Heathen analogies to Christian doctrine.

Chapter XXI.—Analogies to the history of Christ.

Chapter XXII.—Analogies to the sonship of Christ.

Chapter XXIII.—The argument.

Chapter XXIV.—Varieties of heathen worship.

Chapter XXV.—False Gods abandoned by Christians.

Chapter XXVI.—Magicians not trusted by Christians.

Chapter XXVII.—Guilt of exposing children.

Chapter XXVIII.—God’s care for men.

Chapter XXIX.—Continence of Christians.

Chapter XXX.—Was Christ not a magician?

Chapter XXXI.—Of the Hebrew prophets.

Chapter XXXII.—Christ predicted by Moses.

Chapter XXXIII.—Manner of Christ’s birth predicted.

Chapter XXXIV.—Place of Christ’s birth foretold.

Chapter XXXV.—Other fulfilled prophecies.

Chapter XXXVI.—Different modes of prophecy.

Chapter XXXVII.—Utterances of the Father.

Chapter XXXVIII.—Utterances of the Son.

Chapter XXXIX.—Direct predictions by the Spirit.

Chapter XL.—Christ’s advent foretold.

Chapter XLI.—The crucifixion predicted.

Chapter XLII.—Prophecy using the past tense.

Chapter XLIII.—Responsibility asserted.

Chapter XLIV.—Not nullified by prophecy.

Chapter XLV.—Christ’s session in heaven foretold.

Chapter XLVI.—The Word in the world before Christ.

Chapter XLVII.—Desolation of Judæa foretold.

Chapter XLVIII.—Christ’s work and death foretold.

Chapter XLIX.—His rejection by the Jews foretold.

Chapter L.—His humiliation predicted.

Chapter LI.—The majesty of Christ.

Chapter LII.—Certain fulfilment of prophecy.

Chapter LIII.—Summary of the prophecies.

Chapter LIV.—Origin of heathen mythology.

Chapter LV.—Symbols of the cross.

Chapter LVI.—The demons still mislead men.

Chapter LVII.—And cause persecution.

Chapter LVIII.—And raise up heretics.

Chapter LIX.—Plato’s obligation to Moses.

Chapter LX.—Plato’s doctrine of the cross.

Chapter LXI.—Christian baptism.

Chapter LXII.—Its imitation by demons.

Chapter LXIII.—How God appeared to Moses.

Chapter LXIV.—Further misrepresentations of the truth.

Chapter LXV.—Administration of the sacraments.

Chapter LXVI.—Of the Eucharist.

Chapter LXVII.—Weekly worship of the Christians.

Chapter LXVIII.—Conclusion.

Epistle of Adrian in behalf of the Christians.

Epistle of Antoninus to the common assembly of Asia.

Epistle of Marcus Aurelius to the senate, in which he testifies that the Christians were the cause of his victory.

The Second Apology

Dialogue with Trypho

Chapter I.—Introduction.

Chapter II.—Justin describes his studies in philosophy.

Chapter III.—Justin narrates the manner of his conversion.

Chapter IV.—The soul of itself cannot see God.

Chapter V.—The soul is not in its own nature immortal.

Chapter VI.—These things were unknown to Plato and other philosophers.

Chapter VII.—The knowledge of truth to be sought from the prophets alone.

Chapter VIII.—Justin by his colloquy is kindled with love to Christ.

Chapter IX.—The Christians have not believed groundless stories.

Chapter X.—Trypho blames the Christians for this alone—the non-observance of the law.

Chapter XI.—The law abrogated; the New Testament promised and given by God.

Chapter XII.—The Jews violate the eternal law, and interpret ill that of Moses.

Chapter XIII.—Isaiah teaches that sins are forgiven through Christ’s blood.

Chapter XIV.—Righteousness is not placed in Jewish rites, but in the conversion of the heart given in baptism by Christ.

Chapter XV.—In what the true fasting consists.

Chapter XVI.—Circumcision given as a sign, that the Jews might be driven away for their evil deeds done to Christ and the Christians.

Chapter XVII.—The Jews sent persons through the whole earth to spread calumnies on Christians.

Chapter XVIII.—Christians would observe the law, if they did not know why it was instituted.

Chapter XIX.—Circumcision unknown before Abraham. The law was given by Moses on account of the hardness of their hearts.

Chapter XX.—Why choice of meats was prescribed.

Chapter XXI.—Sabbaths were instituted on account of the people’s sins, and not for a work of righteousness.

Chapter XXII.—So also were sacrifices and oblations.

Chapter XXIII.—The opinion of the Jews regarding the law does an injury to God.

Chapter XXIV.—The Christians’ circumcision far more excellent.

Chapter XXV.—The Jews boast in vain that they are sons of Abraham.

Chapter XXVI.—No salvation to the Jews except through Christ.

Chapter XXVII.—Why God taught the same things by the prophets as by Moses.

Chapter XXVIII.—True righteousness is obtained by Christ.

Chapter XXIX.—Christ is useless to those who observe the law.

Chapter XXX.—Christians possess the true righteousness.

Chapter XXXI.—If Christ’s power be now so great, how much greater at the second advent!

Chapter XXXII.—Trypho objecting that Christ is described as glorious by Daniel, Justin distinguishes two advents.

Chapter XXXIII.—Ps. cx. is not spoken of Hezekiah. He proves that Christ was first humble, then shall be glorious.

Chapter XXXIV.—Nor does Ps. lxxii. apply to Solomon, whose faults Christians shudder at.

Chapter XXXV.—Heretics confirm the Catholics in the faith.

Chapter XXXVI.—He proves that Christ is called Lord of Hosts.

Chapter XXXVII.—The same is proved from other Psalms.

Chapter XXXVIII.—It is an annoyance to the Jew that Christ is said to be adored. Justin confirms it, however, from Ps. xlv.

Chapter XXXIX.—The Jews hate the Christians who believe this. How great the distinction is between both!

Chapter XL.—He returns to the Mosaic laws, and proves that they were figures of the things which pertain to Christ.

Chapter XLI.—The oblation of fine flour was a figure of the Eucharist.

Chapter XLII.—The bells on the priest’s robe were a figure of the apostles.

Chapter XLIII.—He concludes that the law had an end in Christ, who was born of the Virgin.

Chapter XLIV.—The Jews in vain promise themselves salvation, which cannot be obtained except through Christ.

Chapter XLV.—Those who were righteous before and under the law shall be saved by Christ.

Chapter XLVI.—Trypho asks whether a man who keeps the law even now will be saved. Justin proves that it contributes nothing to righteousness.

Chapter XLVII.—Justin communicates with Christians who observe the law. Not a few Catholics do otherwise.

Chapter XLVIII.—Before the divinity of Christ is proved, he [Trypho] demands that it be settled that He is Christ.

Chapter XLIX.—To those who object that Elijah has not yet come, he replies that he is the precursor of the first advent.

Chapter L.—It is proved from Isaiah that John is the precursor of Christ.

Chapter LI.—It is proved that this prophecy has been fulfilled.

Chapter LII.—Jacob predicted two advents of Christ.

Chapter LIII.—Jacob predicted that Christ would ride on an ass, and Zechariah confirms it.

Chapter LIV.—What the blood of the grape signifies.

Chapter LV.—Trypho asks that Christ be proved God, but without metaphor. Justin promises to do so.

Chapter LVI.—God who appeared to Moses is distinguished from God the Father.

Chapter LVII.—The Jew objects, why is He said to have eaten, if He be God? Answer of Justin.

Chapter LVIII.—The same is proved from the visions which appeared to Jacob.

Chapter LIX.—God distinct from the Father conversed with Moses.

Chapter LX.—Opinions of the Jews with regard to Him who appeared in the bush.

Chapter LXI—Wisdom is begotten of the Father, as fire from fire.

Chapter LXII.—The words “Let Us make man” agree with the testimony of Proverbs.

Chapter LXIII.—It is proved that this God was incarnate.

Chapter LXIV.—Justin adduces other proofs to the Jew, who denies that he needs this Christ.

Chapter LXV.—The Jew objects that God does not give His glory to another. Justin explains the passage.

Chapter LXVI.—He proves from Isaiah that God was born from a virgin.

Chapter LXVII.—Trypho compares Jesus with Perseus; and would prefer [to say] that He was elected [to be Christ] on account of observance of the law. Justin speaks of the law as formerly.

Chapter LXVIII.—He complains of the obstinacy of Trypho; he answers his objection; he convicts the Jews of bad faith.

Chapter LXIX.—The devil, since he emulates the truth, has invented fables about Bacchus, Hercules, and Æsculapius.

Chapter LXX.—So also the mysteries of Mithras are distorted from the prophecies of Daniel and Isaiah.

Chapter LXXI.—The Jews reject the interpretation of the LXX., from which, moreover, they have taken away some passages.

Chapter LXXII.—Passages have been removed by the Jews from Esdras and Jeremiah.

Chapter LXXIII.—[The words] “From the wood” have been cut out of Ps. xcvi.

Chapter LXXIV.—The beginning of Ps. xcvi. is attributed to the Father [by Trypho]. But [it refers] to Christ by these words: “Tell ye among the nations that the Lord,” etc.

Chapter LXXV.—It is proved that Jesus was the name of God in the book of Exodus.

Chapter LXXVI.—From other passages the same majesty and government of Christ are proved.

Chapter LXXVII.—He returns to explain the prophecy of Isaiah.

Chapter LXXVIII.—He proves that this prophecy harmonizes with Christ alone, from what is afterwards written.

Chapter LXXIX.—He proves against Trypho that the wicked angels have revolted from God.

Chapter LXXX.—The opinion of Justin with regard to the reign of a thousand years. Several Catholics reject it.

Chapter LXXXI.—He endeavours to prove this opinion from Isaiah and the Apocalypse.

Chapter LXXXII.—The prophetical gifts of the Jews were transferred to the Christians.

Chapter LXXXIII.—It is proved that the Psalm, “The Lord said to My Lord,” etc., does not suit Hezekiah.

Chapter LXXXIV.—That prophecy, “Behold, a virgin,” etc., suits Christ alone.

Chapter LXXXV.—He proves that Christ is the Lord of Hosts from Ps. xxiv., and from his authority over demons.

Chapter LXXXVI.—There are various figures in the Old Testament of the wood of the cross by which Christ reigned.

Chapter LXXXVII.—Trypho maintains in objection these words: “And shall rest on Him,” etc. They are explained by Justin.

Chapter LXXXVIII.—Christ has not received the Holy Spirit on account of poverty.

Chapter LXXXIX.—The cross alone is offensive to Trypho on account of the curse, yet it proves that Jesus is Christ.

Chapter XC.—The stretched-out hands of Moses signified beforehand the cross.

Chapter XCI.—The cross was foretold in the blessings of Joseph, and in the serpent that was lifted up.

Chapter XCII.—Unless the scriptures be understood through God’s great grace, God will not appear to have taught always the same righteousness.

Chapter XCIII.—The same kind of righteousness is bestowed on all. Christ comprehends it in two precepts.

Chapter XCIV.—In what sense he who hangs on a tree is cursed.

Chapter XCV.—Christ took upon Himself the curse due to us.

Chapter XCVI.—That curse was a prediction of the things which the Jews would do.

Chapter XCVII.—Other predictions of the cross of Christ.

Chapter XCVIII.—Predictions of Christ in Ps. xxii.

Chapter XCIX.—In the commencement of the Psalm are Christ’s dying words.

Chapter C.—In what sense Christ is [called] Jacob, and Israel, and Son of Man.

Chapter CI.—Christ refers all things to the Father

Chapter CII.—The prediction of the events which happened to Christ when He was born. Why God permitted it.

Chapter CIII.—The Pharisees are the bulls: the roaring lion is Herod or the devil.

Chapter CIV.—Circumstances of Christ’s death are predicted in this Psalm.

Chapter CV.—The Psalm also predicts the crucifixion and the subject of the last prayers of Christ on Earth.

Chapter CVI.—Christ’s resurrection is foretold in the conclusion of the Psalm.

Chapter CVII.—The same is taught from the history of Jonah.

Chapter CVIII.—The resurrection of Christ did not convert the Jews. But through the whole world they have sent men to accuse Christ.

Chapter CIX.—The conversion of the Gentiles has been predicted by Micah.

Chapter CX.—A portion of the prophecy already fulfilled in the Christians: the rest shall be fulfilled at the second advent.

Chapter CXI.—The two advents were signified by the two goats. Other figures of the first advent, in which the Gentiles are freed by the blood of Christ.

Chapter CXII.—The Jews expound these signs jejunely and feebly, and take up their attention only with insignificant matters.

Chapter CXIII.—Joshua was a figure of Christ.

Chapter CXIV.—Some rules for discerning what is said about Christ. The circumcision of the Jews is very different from that which Christians receive.

Chapter CXV.—Prediction about the Christians in Zechariah. The malignant way which the Jews have in disputations.

Chapter CXVI.—It is shown how this prophecy suits the Christians.

Chapter CXVII.—Malachi’s prophecy concerning the sacrifices of the Christians. It cannot be taken as referring to the prayers of Jews of the dispersion.

Chapter CXVIII.—He exhorts to repentance before Christ comes; in whom Christians, since they believe, are far more religious than Jews.

Chapter CXIX.—Christians are the holy people promised to Abraham. They have been called like Abraham.

Chapter CXX.—Christians were promised to Isaac, Jacob, and Judah.

Chapter CXXI.—From the fact that the Gentiles believe in Jesus, it is evident that He is Christ.

Chapter CXXII.—The Jews understand this of the proselytes without reason.

Chapter CXXIII.—Ridiculous interpretations of the Jews. Christians are the true Israel.

Chapter CXXIV.—Christians are the sons of God.

Chapter CXXV.—He explains what force the word Israel has, and how it suits Christ.

Chapter CXXVI.—The various names of Christ according to both natures. It is shown that He is God, and appeared to the patriarchs.

Chapter CXXVII.—These passages of Scripture do not apply to the Father, but to the Word.

Chapter CXXVIII.—The Word is sent not as an inanimate power, but as a person begotten of the Father’s substance.

Chapter CXXIX.—That is confirmed from other passages of Scripture.

Chapter CXXX.—He returns to the conversion of the Gentiles, and shows that it was foretold.

Chapter CXXXI.—How much more faithful to God the Gentiles are who are converted to Christ than the Jews.

Chapter CXXXII.—How great the power was of the name of Jesus in the Old Testament.

Chapter CXXXIII.—The hard-heartedness of the Jews, for whom the Christians pray.

Chapter CXXXIV.—The marriages of Jacob are a figure of the Church.

Chapter CXXXV.—Christ is king of Israel, and Christians are the Israelitic race.

Chapter CXXXVI.—The Jews, in rejecting Christ, rejected God who sent him.

Chapter CXXXVII.—He exhorts the Jews to be converted.

Chapter CXXXVIII.—Noah is a figure of Christ, who has regenerated us by water, and faith, and wood: [i.e., the Cross.]

Chapter CXXXIX.—The blessings, and also the curse, pronounced by Noah were prophecies of the future.

Chapter CXL.—In Christ all are free. The Jews hope for salvation in vain because they are sons of Abraham.

Chapter CXLI.—Free-will in men and angels.

Chapter CXLII.—The Jews return thanks, and leave Justin.

The Discourse to the Greeks

Hortatory Address to the Greeks

Chapter I.—Reasons for addressing the Greeks.

Chapter II—The poets are unfit to be religious teachers.

Chapter III.—Opinions of the school of Thales.

Chapter IV.—Opinions of Pythagoras and Epicurus.

Chapter V.—Opinions of Plato and Aristotle.

Chapter VI.—Further disagreements between Plato and Aristotle.

Chapter VII.—Inconsistencies of Plato’s doctrine.

Chapter VIII.—Antiquity, inspiration, and harmony of Christian teachers.

Chapter IX.—The antiquity of Moses proved by Greek writers.

Chapter X—Training and inspiration of Moses.

Chapter XI.—Heathen oracles testify of Moses.

Chapter XII.—Antiquity of Moses proved.

Chapter XIII.—History of the Septuagint.

Chapter XIV.—A warning appeal to the Greeks.

Chapter XV.—Testimony of Orpheus to monotheism.

Chapter XVI.—Testimony of the Sibyl.

Chapter XVII.—Testimony of Homer.

Chapter XVIII.—Testimony of Sophocles.

Chapter XIX.—Testimony of Pythagoras.

Chapter XX.—Testimony of Plato.

Chapter XXI.—The namelessness of God.

Chapter XXII.—Studied ambiguity of Plato.

Chapter XXIII.—Plato’s self-contradiction.

Chapter XXIV.—Agreement of Plato and Homer.

Chapter XXV.—Plato’s knowledge of God’s eternity.

Chapter XXVI.—Plato indebted to the prophets.

Chapter XXVII.—Plato’s knowledge of the judgment.

Chapter XXVIII.—Homer’s obligations to the sacred writers.

Chapter XXIX.—Origin of Plato’s doctrine of form.

Chapter XXX.—Homer’s knowledge of man’s origin.

Chapter XXXI.—Further proof of Plato’s acquaintance with Scripture.

Chapter XXXII.—Plato’s doctrine of the heavenly gift.

Chapter XXXIII.—Plato’s idea of the beginning of time drawn from Moses.

Chapter XXXIV.—Whence men attributed to God human form.

Chapter XXXV.—Appeal to the Greeks.

Chapter XXXVI.—True knowledge not held by the philosophers.

Chapter XXXVII.—Of the Sibyl.

Chapter XXXVIII.—Concluding appeal.

On the Sole Government of God

On the Resurrection, Fragments

Other Fragments from the Lost Writings of Justin

Introductory Note to the Martyrdom of Justin Martyr

The Martyrdom of Justin Martyr


Introductory Note to Irenæus Against Heresies

Against Heresies: Book I


Chapter I.—Absurd ideas of the disciples of Valentinus as to the origin, name, order, and conjugal productions of their fancied Æons, with the passages of Scripture which they adapt to their opinions.

Chapter II.—The Propator was known to Monogenes alone. Ambition, disturbance, and danger into which Sophia fell; her shapeless offspring: she is restored by Horos. The production of Christ and of the Holy Spirit, in order to the completion of the Æons. Manner of the production of Jesus.

Chapter III.—Texts of Holy Scripture used by these heretics to support their opinions.

Chapter IV.—Account given by the heretics of the formation of Achamoth; origin of the visible world from her disturbances.

Chapter V.—Formation of the Demiurge; description of him. He is the creator of everything outside of the Pleroma.

Chapter VI.—The threefold kind of man feigned by these heretics: good works needless for them, though necessary to others: their abandoned morals.

Chapter VII.—The mother Achamoth, when all her seed are perfected, shall pass into the Pleroma, accompanied by those men who are spiritual; the Demiurge, with animal men, shall pass into the intermediate habitation; but all material men shall go into corruption. Their blasphemous opinions against the true incarnation of Christ by the Virgin Mary. Their views as to the prophecies. Stupid ignorance of the Demiurge.

Chapter VIII.—How the Valentinians pervert the Scriptures to support their own pious opinions.

Chapter IX.—Refutation of the impious interpretations of these heretics.

Chapter X.—Unity of the faith of the Church throughout the whole world.

Chapter XI.—The opinions of Valentinus, with those of his disciples and others.

Chapter XII.—The doctrines of the followers of Ptolemy and Colorbasus.

Chapter XIII.—The deceitful arts and nefarious practices of Marcus.

Chapter XIV.—The various hypotheses of Marcus and others. Theories respecting letters and syllables.

Chapter XV.—Sige relates to Marcus the generation of the twenty-four elements and of Jesus. Exposure of these absurdities.

Chapter XVI.—Absurd interpretations of the Marcosians.

Chapter XVII.—The theory of the Marcosians, that created things were made after the image of things invisible.

Chapter XVIII.—Passages from Moses, which the heretics pervert to the support of their hypothesis.

Chapter XIX.—Passages of Scripture by which they attempt to prove that the Supreme Father was unknown before the coming of Christ.

Chapter XX.—The apocryphal and spurious Scriptures of the Marcosians, with passages of the Gospels which they pervert.

Chapter XXI.—The views of redemption entertained by these heretics.

Chapter XXII.—Deviations of heretics from the truth.

Chapter XXIII.—Doctrines and practices of Simon Magus and Menander.

Chapter XXIV.—Doctrines of Saturninus and Basilides.

Chapter XXV.—Doctrines of Carpocrates.

Chapter XXVI.—Doctrines of Cerinthus, the Ebionites, and Nicolaitanes.

Chapter XXVII.—Doctrines of Cerdo and Marcion.

Chapter XXVIII.—Doctrines of Tatian, the Encratites, and others.

Chapter XXIX.—Doctrines of various other Gnostic sects, and especially of the Barbeliotes or Borborians.

Chapter XXX.—Doctrines of the Ophites and Sethians.

Chapter XXXI.—Doctrines of the Cainites.

Against Heresies: Book II


Chapter I.—There is but one God: the impossibility of its being otherwise.

Chapter II.—The world was not formed by angels, or by any other being, contrary to the will of the most high God, but was made by the Father through the Word.

Chapter III.—The Bythus and Pleroma of the Valentinians, as well as the God of Marcion, shown to be absurd; the world was actually created by the same Being who had conceived the idea of it, and was not the fruit of defect or ignorance.

Chapter IV.—The absurdity of the supposed vacuum and defect of the heretics is demonstrated.

Chapter V.—This world was not formed by any other beings within the territory which is contained by the Father.

Chapter VI.—The angels and the Creator of the world could not have been ignorant of the Supreme God.

Chapter VII.—Created things are not the images of those Æons who are within the Pleroma.

Chapter VIII.—Created things are not a shadow of the Pleroma.

Chapter IX.—There is but one Creator of the world, God the Father: this the constant belief of the Church.

Chapter X.—Perverse interpretations of Scripture by the heretics: God created all things out of nothing, and not from pre-existent matter.

Chapter XI.—The heretics, from their disbelief of the truth, have fallen into an abyss of error: reasons for investigating their systems.

Chapter XII.—The Triacontad of the heretics errs both by defect and excess: Sophia could never have produced anything apart from her consort; Logos and Sige could not have been contemporaries.

Chapter XIII.—The first order of production maintained by the heretics is altogether indefensible.

Chapter XIV.—Valentinus and his followers derived the principles of their system from the heathen; the names only are changed.

Chapter XV.—No account can be given of these productions.

Chapter XVI.—The Creator of the world either produced of Himself the images of things to be made, or the Pleroma was formed after the image of some previous system; and so on ad infinitum.

Chapter XVII.—Inquiry into the production of the Æons: whatever its supposed nature, it is in every respect inconsistent; and on the hypothesis of the heretics, even Nous and the Father Himself would be stained with ignorance.

Chapter XVIII.—Sophia was never really in ignorance or passion; her Enthymesis could not have been separated from herself, or exhibited special tendencies of its own.

Chapter XIX.—Absurdities of the heretics as to their own origin: their opinions respecting the Demiurge shown to be equally untenable and ridiculous.

Chapter XX.—Futility of the arguments adduced to demonstrate the sufferings of the twelfth Æon, from the parables, the treachery of Judas, and the passion of our Saviour.

Chapter XXI.—The twelve apostles were not a type of the Æons.

Chapter XXII.—The thirty Æons are not typified by the fact that Christ was baptized in His thirtieth year: He did not suffer in the twelfth month after His baptism, but was more than fifty years old when He died.

Chapter XXIII.—The woman who suffered from an issue of blood was no type of the suffering Æon.

Chapter XXIV.—Folly of the arguments derived by the heretics from numbers, letters, and syllables.

Chapter XXV.—God is not to be sought after by means of letters, syllables, and numbers; necessity of humility in such investigations.

Chapter XXVI.—“Knowledge puffeth up, but love edifieth.”

Chapter XXVII.—Proper mode of interpreting parables and obscure passages of Scripture.

Chapter XXVIII.—Perfect knowledge cannot be attained in the present life: many questions must be submissively left in the hands of God.

Chapter XXIX.—Refutation of the views of the heretics as to the future destiny of the soul and body.

Chapter XXX.—Absurdity of their styling themselves spiritual, while the Demiurge is declared to be animal.

Chapter XXXI.—Recapitulation and application of the foregoing arguments.

Chapter XXXII.—Further exposure of the wicked and blasphemous doctrines of the heretics.

Chapter XXXIII.—Absurdity of the doctrine of the transmigration of souls.

Chapter XXXIV.—Souls can be recognised in the separate state, and are immortal although they once had a beginning.

Chapter XXXV.—Refutation of Basilides, and of the opinion that the prophets uttered their predictions under the inspiration of different gods.

Against Heresies: Book III


Chapter I.—The apostles did not commence to preach the Gospel, or to place anything on record until they were endowed with the gifts and power of the Holy Spirit. They preached one God alone, Maker of heaven and earth.

Chapter II.—The heretics follow neither Scripture nor tradition.

Chapter III.—A refutation of the heretics, from the fact that, in the various Churches, a perpetual succession of bishops was kept up.

Chapter IV.—The truth is to be found nowhere else but in the Catholic Church, the sole depository of apostolical doctrine. Heresies are of recent formation, and cannot trace their origin up to the apostles.

Chapter V.—Christ and His apostles, without any fraud, deception, or hypocrisy, preached that one God, the Father, was the founder of all things. They did not accommodate their doctrine to the prepossessions of their hearers.

Chapter VI—The Holy Ghost, throughout the Old Testament Scriptures, made mention of no other God or Lord, save him who is the true God.

Chapter VII.—Reply to an objection founded on the words of St. Paul (2 Cor. iv. 4). St. Paul occasionally uses words not in their grammatical sequence.

Chapter VIII.—Answer to an objection, arising from the words of Christ (Matt. vi. 24). God alone is to be really called God and Lord, for He is without beginning and end.

Chapter IX.—One and the same God, the Creator of heaven and earth, is He whom the prophets foretold, and who was declared by the Gospel. Proof of this, at the outset, from St. Matthew’s Gospel.

Chapter X.—Proofs of the foregoing, drawn from the Gospels of Mark and Luke.

Chapter XI—Proofs in continuation, extracted from St. John’s Gospel. The Gospels are four in number, neither more nor less. Mystic reasons for this.

Chapter XII.—Doctrine of the rest of the apostles.

Chapter XIII—Refutation of the opinion, that Paul was the only apostle who had knowledge of the truth.

Chapter XIV.—If Paul had known any mysteries unrevealed to the other apostles, Luke, his constant companion and fellow-traveller, could not have been ignorant of them; neither could the truth have possibly lain hid from him, through whom alone we learn many and most important particulars of the Gospel history.

Chapter XV.—Refutation of the Ebionites, who disparaged the authority of St. Paul, from the writings of St. Luke, which must be received as a whole. Exposure of the hypocrisy, deceit, and pride of the Gnostics. The apostles and their disciples knew and preached one God, the Creator of the world.

Chapter XVI.—Proofs from the apostolic writings, that Jesus Christ was one and the same, the only begotten Son of God, perfect God and perfect man.

Chapter XVII.—The apostles teach that it was neither Christ nor the Saviour, but the Holy Spirit, who did descend upon Jesus. The reason for this descent.

Chapter XVIII.—Continuation of the foregoing argument. Proofs from the writings of St. Paul, and from the words of Our Lord, that Christ and Jesus cannot be considered as distinct beings; neither can it be alleged that the Son of God became man merely in appearance, but that He did so truly and actually.

Chapter XIX.—Jesus Christ was not a mere man, begotten from Joseph in the ordinary course of nature, but was very God, begotten of the Father most high, and very man, born of the Virgin.

Chapter XX.—God showed himself, by the fall of man, as patient, benign, merciful, mighty to save. Man is therefore most ungrateful, if, unmindful of his own lot, and of the benefits held out to him, he do not acknowledge divine grace.

Chapter XXI.—A vindication of the prophecy in Isa. vii. 14 against the misinterpretations of Theodotion, Aquila, the Ebionites, and the Jews. Authority of the Septuagint version. Arguments in proof that Christ was born of a virgin.

Chapter XXII.—Christ assumed actual flesh, conceived and born of the Virgin.

Chapter XXIII.—Arguments in opposition to Tatian, showing that it was consonant to divine justice and mercy that the first Adam should first partake in that salvation offered to all by Christ.

Chapter XXIV.—Recapitulation of the various arguments adduced against Gnostic impiety under all its aspects. The heretics, tossed about by every blast of doctrine, are opposed by the uniform teaching of the Church, which remains so always, and is consistent with itself.

Chapter XXV.—This world is ruled by the providence of one God, who is both endowed with infinite justice to punish the wicked, and with infinite goodness to bless the pious, and impart to them salvation.


Against Heresies: Book IV


Chapter I.—The Lord acknowledged but one God and Father.

Chapter II.—Proofs from the plain testimony of Moses, and of the other prophets, whose words are the words of Christ, that there is but one God, the founder of the world, whom Our Lord preached, and whom He called His Father.

Chapter III.—Answer to the cavils of the Gnostics. We are not to suppose that the true God can be changed, or come to an end because the heavens, which are His throne and the earth, His footstool, shall pass away.

Chapter IV.—Answer to another objection, showing that the destruction of Jerusalem, which was the city of the great King, diminished nothing from the supreme majesty and power of God, for that this destruction was put in execution by the most wise counsel of the same God.

Chapter V.—The author returns to his former argument, and shows that there was but one God announced by the law and prophets, whom Christ confesses as His Father, and who, through His word, one living God with Him, made Himself known to men in both covenants.

Chapter VI.—Explanation of the words of Christ, “No man knoweth the Father, but the Son,” etc.; which words the heretics misinterpret. Proof that, by the Father revealing the Son, and by the Son being revealed, the Father was never unknown.

Chapter VII.—Recapitulation of the foregoing argument, showing that Abraham, through the revelation of the Word, knew the Father, and the coming of the Son of God. For this cause, he rejoiced to see the day of Christ, when the promises made to him should be fulfilled. The fruit of this rejoicing has flowed to posterity, viz., to those who are partakers in the faith of Abraham, but not to the Jews who reject the Word of God.

Chapter VIII.—Vain attempts of Marcion and his followers, who exclude Abraham from the salvation bestowed by Christ, who liberated not only Abraham, but the seed of Abraham, by fulfilling and not destroying the law when He healed on the Sabbath-day.

Chapter IX.—There is but one author, and one end to both covenants.

Chapter X.—The Old Testament Scriptures, and those written by Moses in particular, do everywhere make mention of the Son of God, and foretell His advent and passion. From this fact it follows that they were inspired by one and the same God.

Chapter XI.—The old prophets and righteous men knew beforehand of the advent of Christ, and earnestly desired to see and hear Him, He revealing himself in the Scriptures by the Holy Ghost, and without any change in Himself, enriching men day by day with benefits, but conferring them in greater abundance on later than on former generations.

Chapter XII.—It clearly appears that there was but one author of both the old and the new law, from the fact that Christ condemned traditions and customs repugnant to the former, while He confirmed its most important precepts, and taught that He was Himself the end of the Mosaic law.

Chapter XIII.—Christ did not abrogate the natural precepts of the law, but rather fulfilled and extended them. He removed the yoke and bondage of the old law, so that mankind, being now set free, might serve God with that trustful piety which becometh sons.

Chapter XIV.—If God demands obedience from man, if He formed man, called him and placed him under laws, it was merely for man’s welfare; not that God stood in need of man, but that He graciously conferred upon man His favours in every possible manner.

Chapter XV.—At first God deemed it sufficient to inscribe the natural law, or the Decalogue, upon the hearts of men; but afterwards He found it necessary to bridle, with the yoke of the Mosaic law, the desires of the Jews, who were abusing their liberty; and even to add some special commands, because of the hardness of their hearts.

Chapter XVI.—Perfect righteousness was conferred neither by circumcision nor by any other legal ceremonies. The Decalogue, however, was not cancelled by Christ, but is always in force: men were never released from its commandments.

Chapter XVII.—Proof that God did not appoint the Levitical dispensation for His own sake, or as requiring such service; for He does, in fact, need nothing from men.

Chapter XVIII.—Concerning sacrifices and oblations, and those who truly offer them.

Chapter XIX.—Earthly things may be the type of heavenly, but the latter cannot be the types of others still superior and unknown; nor can we, without absolute madness, maintain that God is known to us only as the type of a still unknown and superior being.

Chapter XX.—That one God formed all things in the world, by means of the Word and the Holy Spirit: and that although He is to us in this life invisible and incomprehensible, nevertheless He is not unknown; inasmuch as His works do declare Him, and His Word has shown that in many modes He may be seen and known.

Chapter XXI.—Abraham’s faith was identical with ours; this faith was prefigured by the words and actions of the old patriarchs.

Chapter XXII.—Christ did not come for the sake of the men of one age only, but for all who, living righteously and piously, had believed upon Him; and for those, too, who shall believe.

Chapter XXIII.—The patriarchs and prophets by pointing out the advent of Christ, fortified thereby, as it were, the way of posterity to the faith of Christ; and so the labours of the apostles were lessened inasmuch as they gathered in the fruits of the labours of others.

Chapter XXIV.—The conversion of the Gentiles was more difficult than that of the Jews; the labours of those apostles, therefore who engaged in the former task, were greater than those who undertook the latter.

Chapter XXV.—Both covenants were prefigured in Abraham, and in the labour of Tamar; there was, however, but one and the same God to each covenant.

Chapter XXVI.—The treasure hid in the Scriptures is Christ; the true exposition of the Scriptures is to be found in the Church alone.

Chapter XXVII—The sins of the men of old time, which incurred the displeasure of God, were, by His providence, committed to writing, that we might derive instruction thereby, and not be filled with pride. We must not, therefore, infer that there was another God than He whom Christ preached; we should rather fear, lest the one and the same God who inflicted punishment on the ancients, should bring down heavier upon us.

Chapter XXVIII.—Those persons prove themselves senseless who exaggerate the mercy of Christ, but are silent as to the judgment, and look only at the more abundant grace of the New Testament; but, forgetful of the greater degree of perfection which it demands from us, they endeavour to show that there is another God beyond Him who created the world.

Chapter XXIX.—Refutation of the arguments of the Marcionites, who attempted to show that God was the author of sin, because He blinded Pharaoh and his servants.

Chapter XXX.—Refutation of another argument adduced by the Marcionites, that God directed the Hebrews to spoil the Egyptians.

Chapter XXXI.—We should not hastily impute as crimes to the men of old time those actions which the Scripture has not condemned, but should rather seek in them types of things to come: an example of this in the incest committed by Lot.

Chapter XXXII.—That one God was the author of both Testaments, is confirmed by the authority of a presbyter who had been taught by the apostles.

Chapter XXXIII.—Whosoever confesses that one God is the author of both Testaments, and diligently reads the Scriptures in company with the presbyters of the Church, is a true spiritual disciple; and he will rightly understand and interpret all that the prophets have declared respecting Christ and the liberty of the New Testament.

Chapter XXXIV.—Proof against the Marcionites, that the prophets referred in all their predictions to our Christ.

Chapter XXXV.—A refutation of those who allege that the prophets uttered some predictions under the inspiration of the highest, others from the Demiurge. Disagreements of the Valentinians among themselves with regard to these same predictions.

Chapter XXXVI.—The prophets were sent from one and the same Father from whom the Son was sent.

Chapter XXXVII.—Men are possessed of free will, and endowed with the faculty of making a choice. It is not true, therefore, that some are by nature good, and others bad.

Chapter XXXVIII.—Why man was not made perfect from the beginning.

Chapter XXXIX.—Man is endowed with the faculty of distinguishing good and evil; so that, without compulsion, he has the power, by his own will and choice, to perform God’s commandments, by doing which he avoids the evils prepared for the rebellious.

Chapter XL.—One and the same God the Father inflicts punishment on the reprobate, and bestows rewards on the elect.

Chapter XLI.—Those persons who do not believe in God, but who are disobedient, are angels and sons of the devil, not indeed by nature, but by imitation. Close of this book, and scope of the succeeding one.

Against Heresies: Book V


Chapter I.—Christ alone is able to teach divine things, and to redeem us: He, the same, took flesh of the Virgin Mary, not merely in appearance, but actually, by the operation of the Holy Spirit, in order to renovate us. Strictures on the conceits of Valentinus and Ebion.

Chapter II.—When Christ visited us in His grace, He did not come to what did not belong to Him: also, by shedding His true blood for us, and exhibiting to us His true flesh in the Eucharist, He conferred upon our flesh the capacity of salvation.

Chapter III.—The power and glory of God shine forth in the weakness of human flesh, as He will render our body a participator of the resurrection and of immortality, although He has formed it from the dust of the earth; He will also bestow upon it the enjoyment of immortality, just as He grants it this short life in common with the soul.

Chapter IV.—Those persons are deceived who feign another God the Father besides the Creator of the world; for he must have been feeble and useless, or else malignant and full of envy, if he be either unable or unwilling to extend external life to our bodies.

Chapter V.—The prolonged life of the ancients, the translation of Elijah and of Enoch in their own bodies, as well as the preservation of Jonah, of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, in the midst of extreme peril, are clear demonstrations that God can raise up our bodies to life eternal.

Chapter VI.—God will bestow salvation upon the whole nature of man, consisting of body and soul in close union, since the Word took it upon Him, and adorned with the gifts of the Holy Spirit, of whom our bodies are, and are termed, the temples.

Chapter VII.—Inasmuch as Christ did rise in our flesh, it follows that we shall be also raised in the same; since the resurrection promised to us should not be referred to spirits naturally immortal, but to bodies in themselves mortal.

Chapter VIII.—The gifts of the Holy Spirit which we receive prepare us for incorruption, render us spiritual, and separate us from carnal men. These two classes are signified by the clean and unclean animals in the legal dispensation.

Chapter IX.—Showing how that passage of the apostle which the heretics pervert, should be understood; viz., “Flesh and blood shall not possess the kingdom of God.”

Chapter X.—By a comparison drawn from the wild olive-tree, whose quality but not whose nature is changed by grafting, he proves more important things; he points out also that man without the Spirit is not capable of bringing forth fruit, or of inheriting the kingdom of God.

Chapter XI.—Treats upon the actions of carnal and of spiritual persons; also, that the spiritual cleansing is not to be referred to the substance of our bodies, but to the manner of our former life.

Chapter XII.—Of the difference between life and death; of the breath of life and the vivifying Spirit: also how it is that the substance of flesh revives which once was dead.

Chapter XIII.—In the dead who were raised by Christ we possess the highest proof of the resurrection; and our hearts are shown to be capable of life eternal, because they can now receive the Spirit of God.

Chapter XIV.—Unless the flesh were to be saved, the Word would not have taken upon Him flesh of the same substance as ours: from this it would follow that neither should we have been reconciled by Him.

Chapter XV.—Proofs of the resurrection from Isaiah and Ezekiel; the same God who created us will also raise us up.

Chapter XVI.—Since our bodies return to the earth, it follows that they have their substance from it; also, by the advent of the Word, the image of God in us appeared in a clearer light.

Chapter XVII.—There is but one Lord and one God, the Father and Creator of all things, who has loved us in Christ, given us commandments, and remitted our sins; whose Son and Word Christ proved Himself to be, when He forgave our sins.

Chapter XVIII.—God the Father and His Word have formed all created things (which They use) by Their own power and wisdom, not out of defect or ignorance. The Son of God, who received all power from the Father, would otherwise never have taken flesh upon Him.

Chapter XIX.—A comparison is instituted between the disobedient and sinning Eve and the Virgin Mary, her patroness. Various and discordant heresies are mentioned.

Chapter XX.—Those pastors are to be heard to whom the apostles committed the Churches, possessing one and the same doctrine of salvation; the heretics, on the other hand, are to be avoided. We must think soberly with regard to the mysteries of the faith.

Chapter XXI.—Christ is the head of all things already mentioned. It was fitting that He should be sent by the Father, the Creator of all things, to assume human nature, and should be tempted by Satan, that He might fulfil the promises, and carry off a glorious and perfect victory.

Chapter XXII.—The true Lord and the one God is declared by the law, and manifested by Christ His Son in the Gospel; whom alone we should adore, and from Him we must look for all good things, not from Satan.

Chapter XXIII.—The devil is well practised in falsehood, by which Adam having been led astray, sinned on the sixth day of the creation, in which day also he has been renewed by Christ.

Chapter XXIV.—Of the constant falsehood of the devil, and of the powers and governments of the world, which we ought to obey, inasmuch as they are appointed of God, not of the devil.

Chapter XXV.—The fraud, pride, and tyrannical kingdom of Antichrist, as described by Daniel and Paul.

Chapter XXVI.—John and Daniel have predicted the dissolution and desolation of the Roman Empire, which shall precede the end of the world and the eternal kingdom of Christ. The Gnostics are refuted, those tools of Satan, who invent another Father different from the Creator.

Chapter XXVII.—The future judgment by Christ. Communion with and separation from the divine being. The eternal punishment of unbelievers.

Chapter XXVIII.—The distinction to be made between the righteous and the wicked. The future apostasy in the time of Antichrist, and the end of the world.

Chapter XXIX.—All things have been created for the service of man. The deceits, wickedness, and apostate power of Antichrist. This was prefigured at the deluge, as afterwards by the persecution of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego.

Chapter XXX.—Although certain as to the number of the name of Antichrist, yet we should come to no rash conclusions as to the name itself, because this number is capable of being fitted to many names. Reasons for this point being reserved by the Holy Spirit. Antichrist’s reign and death.

Chapter XXXI.—The preservation of our bodies is confirmed by the resurrection and ascension of Christ: the souls of the saints during the intermediate period are in a state of expectation of that time when they shall receive their perfect and consummated glory.

Chapter XXXII.—In that flesh in which the saints have suffered so many afflictions, they shall receive the fruits of their labours; especially since all creation waits for this, and God promises it to Abraham and his seed.

Chapter XXXIII.—Further proofs of the same proposition, drawn from the promises made by Christ, when He declared that He would drink of the fruit of the vine with His disciples in His Father’s kingdom, while at the same time He promised to reward them an hundred-fold, and to make them partake of banquets. The blessing pronounced by Jacob had pointed out this already, as Papias and the elders have interpreted it.

Chapter XXXIV.—He fortifies his opinions with regard to the temporal and earthly kingdom of the saints after their resurrection, by the various testimonies of Isaiah, Ezekiel, Jeremiah, and Daniel; also by the parable of the servants watching, to whom the Lord promised that He would minister.

Chapter XXXV.—He contends that these testimonies already alleged cannot be understood allegorically of celestial blessings, but that they shall have their fulfilment after the coming of Antichrist, and the resurrection, in the terrestrial Jerusalem. To the former prophecies he subjoins others drawn from Isaiah, Jeremiah, and the Apocalypse of John.

Chapter XXXVI.—Men shall be actually raised: the world shall not be annihilated; but there shall be various mansions for the saints, according to the rank allotted to each individual. All things shall be subject to God the Father, and so shall He be all in all.

Fragments from the Lost Writings of Irenæus

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