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

Early Church Fathers  Index     

Chapter VIII.—The Origin of the Good One Different from that of the Evil One.

When Peter said this, Micah, 1509 who was himself also one of the companions that attended on him, said:  “I also should like to learn from you if the good one has been produced in the same way that the evil one came into being.  But if they came into being in a similar manner, then they are brothers in my opinion.”  And Peter said:  “They have not come into being in a similar way:  for no doubt you remember what I said in the beginning, that the substance of the body of the wicked one, being fourfold in origin, was carefully selected and sent forth by God; p. 342 but when it was combined externally, according to the will of Him who sent it forth, there arose, in consequence of the combination, the disposition which rejoices in evils: 1510   so that you may see that the substance, fourfold in origin, which was sent forth by Him, and which also always exists, is the child of God; but that the accidentally arising disposition which rejoices in evils has supervened when the substance 1511 was combined externally by him.  And thus disposition has not been begotten by God, nor by any one else, nor indeed has it been sent forth by Him, nor has it come forth spontaneously, 1512 nor did it always exist, like the substance before the combination; but it has come on as an accident by external combination, according to the will of God.  And we have often said that it must be so.  But the good one having been begotten from the most beautiful change of God, and not having arisen accidentally through an external combination, is really His Son.  Yet, since these doctrines are unwritten, and are confirmed to us only by conjecture, let us by no means deem it as absolutely certain that this is the true state of the case.  For if we act otherwise, our mind will cease from investigating the truth, in the belief that it has already fully comprehended it.  Remember these things, therefore; for I must not state such things to all, but only to those who are found after trial most trustworthy.  Nor ought we rashly to maintain such assertions towards each other, nor ought ye to dare to speak as if you were accurately acquainted with the discovery of secret truths, but you ought simply to reflect over them in silence; for in stating, perchance, that a matter is so, 1513 he who says it will err, and he will suffer punishment for having dared to speak even to himself what has been honoured with silence.”



Dressel remarks that this cannot be the true reading.  Some other name mentioned in Hom. II. c. 1 must be substituted here or in c. 4.


This passage is corrupt.  We have adopted Wieseler’s emendations for the most part.


We have read τῆς with Wieseler for τις.


Wieseler translates “accidentally.”


We have changed οὐχ ὡς ἔχον into οὕτως ἔχειν.

Next: Chapter IX