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Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers, Vol. IV:
Writings in Connection with the Donatist Controversy.: Chapter 46

Early Church Fathers  Index     

Chapter 46.—107.  Petilianus said:  "In the first Psalm David separates the blessed from the impious, not indeed making them into parties, but excluding all the impious from holiness.  ‘Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners.’  Let him who had strayed from the path of righteousness, so that he should perish, return to it again.  ‘Nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful.’ 2124   When he gives this warning, O ye miserable men, why do you sit in that seat?  ‘But his delight is in the law of the Lord; and in His law doth he meditate day and night.  And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season:  his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper.  The ungodly are not so:  but are like the chaff which the wind driveth away.’  He blindeth their eyes, so that they should not see.  ‘Therefore the ungodly shall not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous.  For the Lord knoweth the way of the righteous:  but the way of the ungodly shall perish.’" 2125

108.  Augustin answered:  Who is there in the Scriptures that would not distinguish between these two classes of men?  But you slanderously charge the corn with the offenses of the chaff; and being yourselves mere chaff, you boast yourselves to be the only corn.  But the true prophets declare that both these classes have been mingled together throughout the whole world, that is, throughout the whole corn-field of the Lord, until the winnowing which is to take place on the day of judgment.  But I advise you to read that first Psalm in the Greek version, and then you will not venture to reproach the whole world with being of the party of Macarius; because you will perhaps come to understand of what Macarius there is a party among all the saints, who throughout all nations are blessed in the seed of Abraham.  For what stands in our language as "Blessed is the man," is in Greek Μαχάριος ἀνήρ.  But that Macarius who offends you, if he is a bad man, neither belongs to this division, nor is to its prejudice.  But if he is a good man, let him prove his own work, that he may have glory in himself alone, and not in another. 2126


Footnotes

558:2124

Et super cathedram pestilentiæ, cp. Hieron.

558:2125

Ps. i.

558:2126

Gal. vi. 4.


Next: Chapter 47

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