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Ante-Nicene Fathers, Vol VIII:
Pseudo-Clementine Literature.: Chapter IV

Early Church Fathers  Index     

Chapter IV.—Peter’s Arguments Against Genesis.

“And I said:  ‘If all things are subject to Genesis, and you are fully convinced that this is the case, your thoughts and advice are contrary to your own opinion. 1198   For if it is impossible even to think in opposition to Genesis, why do you toil in vain, advising me to do what cannot be done?  Yea, moreover, even if Genesis subsists, do not make haste to prevail on me not to worship Him who is also Lord of the stars, by whose wish that a thing should not take place, that thing becomes an impossibility.  For always that which is subject must obey that which rules.  As far, however, as the worship of the common gods is concerned, that is superfluous, if Genesis has sway.  For neither does anything happen contrary to what seems good to fate, nor are they themselves able to do anything, since they are subject to their own universal Genesis.  If Genesis exists, there is this objection to it, that that which is not first has the rule; or, in other words, the uncreated cannot be subject, for the uncreated, as being uncreated, has nothing that is older than itself.’ 1199



Lit., “thinking you counsel what is contrary to yourself.”


The argument here is obscure.  Probably what is intended is as follows:  Genesis means origination, coming into being.  Origination cannot be the ruling power, for there must be something unoriginated which has given rise to the origination.  The origination, therefore, as not being first, cannot have sway, and it must itself be subject to that which is unoriginated.

Next: Chapter V