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Ante-Nicene Fathers, Vol I:
POLYCARP: Chapter V.—The duties of deacons,...

Early Church Fathers  Index     

Chapter V.—The duties of deacons, youths, and virgins.

Knowing, then, that “God is not mocked,” 365 we ought to walk worthy of His commandment and glory. In like manner should the deacons be blameless before the face of His righteousness, as being the servants of God and Christ, 366 and not of men. They must not be slanderers, double-tongued, 367 or lovers of money, but temperate in all things, compassionate, industrious, walking according to the truth of the Lord, who was the servant 368 of all. If we please Him in this present world, we shall receive also the future world, according as He has promised to us that He will raise us again from the dead, and that if we live 369 worthily of Him, “we shall also reign together with Him,” 370 provided only we believe. In like manner, let the young men also be blameless in all things, being especially careful to preserve purity, and keeping themselves in, as with a bridle, from every kind of evil. For it is well that they should be cut off from 371 the lusts that are in the world, since “every lust warreth against the spirit;” 372 and “neither fornicators, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, shall inherit the kingdom of God,” 373 nor those who do things inconsistent and unbecoming. Wherefore, it is needful to abstain from all these things, being subject to the presbyters and deacons, as unto God and Christ. The virgins also must walk in a blameless and pure conscience.


Footnotes

34:365

Gal. vi. 7.

34:366

Some read, “God in Christ.”

34:367

Comp. 1 Tim. iii. 8.

34:368

Comp. Matt. xx. 28.

34:369

Πολιτευσώμεθα, referring to the whole conduct; comp. Phil. i. 27.

34:370

2 Tim. ii. 12.

34:371

Some read, ἀνακύπτεσθαι, “to emerge from.” [So Chevallier, but not Wake nor Jacobson. See the note of latter, ad loc.]

34:372

1 Pet. ii. 11.

34:373

1 Cor. 6:9, 10.


Next: Chapter VI.—The duties of presbyters...

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