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Nicene and Ante-Nicene Fathers, Ser. II, Vol. IV:
Defence of His Flight. (Apologia de Fuga.): Athanasius's wonderful escape.

Early Church Fathers  Index     

25. Athanasius’s wonderful escape.

Now when Providence had delivered us in such an extraordinary manner, who can justly lay any blame upon me, because we did not give ourselves up into the hands of them that sought after us, nor return and present ourselves before them? This would have been plainly to shew ingratitude to the Lord, and to act against His commandment, and in contradiction to the practice of the Saints. He who censures me in this matter must presume also to blame the great Apostle Peter, because though he was shut up and guarded by soldiers, he followed the angel that summoned him, and when he had gone forth from the prison and escaped in safety, he did not return and surrender himself, although he heard what Herod had done. Let the Arian in his madness censure the Apostle Paul, because when he was let down from the wall and had escaped in safety, he did not change his mind, and return and give himself up; or Moses, because he returned not out of Midian into Egypt, that he might be taken of them that sought after him; or David, because when he was concealed in the cave, he did not discover himself to Saul. As also the sons of the prophets remained in their caves, and did not surrender themselves to Ahab. This would have been to act contrary to the commandment, since the Scripture says, ‘Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God 1502 .’



Deut. vi. 16; Matt. iv. 7.

Next: He acted according to the example of the Saints. Character of his accusers.

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