All Coptic Links - Coptic Directory - Orthodox Church Directory The Agbeya - The Coptic Book of Prayers (English Agbiya + Arabic Agpeya) English Bible + Holy Bible in other languages - Arabic, French, Ethiopian Amharic Holy Bible, ArabicBible, Enjeel Saint Takla dot org - Main page - English Photo and Image Gallery: Jesus - Mary - Saints - St. Takla - Church - Priests - Bible - Activities - pictures and Icons.. Download and listen to Hymns - Carols - Midnight Praise (Tasbeha) - Midis - Videos - Liturgies - Masses - Sermons - Online Streaming St-Takla.org   Coptic Church Website Logo of Saint Takla Haymanot the Ethiopian Coptic Orthodox Website - Alexandria - Egypt - موقع الأنبا تكلا هيمانوت القبطي الأرثوذكسي FAQ - Frequently Asked Questions and Answers - Coptic and Christan Q&A - Faith, Creed, Site, Youth, Family, Holy Bible Contact Us - Address - Map - Online Support Send a free Christian and Coptic Greeting Cards to your friends موقع الكنيسة القبطية باللغة العربية - الموقع العربي StTaklaorg Site News and Updates Downloads.. Winamp Skins - Coptic fonts - Agbeya - Software - Freeware - Icons - Gallery - Mp3s Feedback - Submit URL - ideas - Suggestions.. Kids' Corner - Coloring - Songs - Games - Stories Free Coptic Books - Christian Arabic Books, Orthodox English Books  


Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers, Vol. II:
On Christian Doctrine: Chapter 7

Early Church Fathers  Index     

Chapter 7.—The Useless Bondage of the Gentiles.

And if ever any of them endeavored to make it out that their idols were only signs, yet still they used them in reference to the worship and adoration of the creature.  What difference does it make to me, for instance, that the image of Neptune is not itself to be considered a god, but only as representing the wide ocean, and all the other waters besides that spring out of fountains?  As it is described by a poet of theirs, 1857 who says, if I recollect aright, “Thou, Father Neptune, whose hoary temples are wreathed with the resounding sea, whose beard is the mighty ocean flowing forth unceasingly, and whose p. 560 hair is the winding rivers.”  This husk shakes its rattling stones within a sweet covering, and yet it is not food for men, but for swine.  He who knows the gospel knows what I mean. 1858   What profit is it to me, then, that the image of Neptune is used with a reference to this explanation of it, unless indeed the result be that I worship neither?  For any statue you like to take is as much god to me as the wide ocean.  I grant, however, that they who make gods of the works of man have sunk lower than they who make gods of the works of God.  But the command is that we should love and serve the One God, who is the Maker of all those things, the images of which are worshipped by the heathen either as gods, or as signs and representations of gods.  If, then, to take a sign which has been established for a useful end instead of the thing itself which it was designed to signify, is bondage to the flesh, how much more so is it to take signs intended to represent useless things for the things themselves!  For even if you go back to the very things signified by such signs, and engage your mind in the worship of these, you will not be anything the more free from the burden and the livery of bondage to the flesh.


Footnotes

559:1857

Claudian.

560:1858

Luke 15.16.


Next: Chapter 8

Send this page to a friend

St. Takla Church - Main Index111111111 - Commentary on the New Testament by Matthew Henry تفسير العهد القديم - متى هنرى

Like & share St-Takla.org


© Saint Takla Haymanout Website: Coptic Orthodox Church - Alexandria, Egypt / URL: http://St-Takla.org / Contact us at

http://st-takla.org/books/en/ecf/102/1020787.html