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Ante-Nicene Fathers, Vol I:
POLYCARP: Chapter XIV.—The prayer of Polycarp.

Early Church Fathers  Index     

Chapter XIV.—The prayer of Polycarp.

They did not nail him then, but simply bound him. And he, placing his hands behind him, and being bound like a distinguished ram [taken] out of a great flock for sacrifice, and prepared to be an acceptable burnt-offering unto God, looked up to heaven, and said, “O Lord God Almighty, the Father of thy beloved and blessed Son Jesus Christ, by whom we have received the knowledge of Thee, the God of angels and powers, and of every creature, and of the whole race of the righteous who live before thee, I give Thee thanks that Thou hast counted me, worthy of this day and this hour, that I should have a part in the number of Thy martyrs, in the cup 456 of thy Christ, to the resurrection of eternal life, both of soul and body, through the incorruption [imparted] by the Holy Ghost. Among whom may I be accepted this day before Thee as a fat 457 and acceptable sacrifice, according as Thou, the ever-truthful 458 God, hast foreordained, hast revealed beforehand to me, and now hast fulfilled. Wherefore also I praise Thee for all things, I bless Thee, I glorify Thee, along with the everlasting and heavenly Jesus Christ, Thy beloved Son, with whom, to Thee, and the Holy Ghost, be glory both now and to all coming ages. Amen.” 459


Footnotes

42:456

Comp. Matt. xx. 22, Matt. xxvi. 39; Mark x. 38.

42:457

Literally, “in a fat,” etc., [or, “in a rich”].

42:458

Literally, “the not false and true God.”

42:459

Eusebius (Hist. Eccl., iv. 15) has preserved a great portion of this Martyrium, but in a text considerably differing from that we have followed. Here, instead of “and,” he has “in the Holy Ghost.”


Next: Chapter XV.—Polycarp is not injured...

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