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Nicene and Post Nicene-Fathers, Vol. I:
The Confessions: Chapter XIV

Early Church Fathers  Index     

Chapter XIV.—Of the Depth of the Sacred Scripture, and Its Enemies.

17. Wonderful is the depth of Thy oracles, whose surface is before us, inviting the little ones; and yet wonderful is the depth, O my God, wonderful is the depth. 1103 It is awe to look into it; and awe of honour, and a tremor of love. The enemies thereof I hate vehemently. 1104 Oh, if Thou wouldest slay them with Thy two-edged sword, 1105 that they be not its enemies! For thus do I love, that they should be slain unto themselves that they may live unto Thee. But behold others not reprovers, but praisers of the book of Genesis,—“The Spirit of God,” say they, “Who by His servant Moses wrote these things, willed not that these words should be thus understood. He willed not that it should be understood as Thou sayest, but as we say.” Unto whom, O God of us all, Thyself being Judge, do I thus answer.


Footnotes

180:1103

See p. 112, note 2, and p. 178, note 2, above. See also Trench, Hulsean Lectures (1845), lect. 6, “The Inexhaustibility of Scripture.”

180:1104

Ps. 139.21.

180:1105

Ps. 149.6. He refers to the Manichæans (see p. 71, note l). In his comment on this place, he interprets the “two-edged sword” to mean the Old and New Testament, called two-edged, he says, because it speaks of things temporal and eternal.


Next: Chapter XV

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