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Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers, Vol. II:
City of God: Chapter 14

Early Church Fathers  Index     

Chapter 14.—Of the Pride in the Sin, Which Was Worse Than the Sin Itself.

But it is a worse and more damnable pride which casts about for the shelter of an excuse even in manifest sins, as these our first parents did, of whom the woman said, “The serpent beguiled me, and I did eat;” and the man said, “The woman whom Thou gavest to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I did eat.” 737   Here there is no word of begging pardon, no word of entreaty for healing.  For though they do not, like Cain, deny that they have perpetrated the deed, yet their pride seeks to refer its wickedness to another,—the woman’s pride to the serpent, the man’s to the woman.  But where there is a plain trangression of a divine commandment, this is rather to accuse than to excuse oneself.  For the fact that the woman sinned on the serpent’s persuasion, and the man at the woman’s offer, did not make the transgression less, as if there were any one whom we ought rather to believe or yield to than God.



Gen. 3:12, 13.

Next: Chapter 15

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