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Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers, Vol. IV:
Writings in Connection with the Donatist Controversy.: Chapter 95

Early Church Fathers  Index     

Chapter 95.—216.  Petilianus said:  "If you wish that we should be your friends, why do you drag us to you against our will?  But if you wish that we should be your foes, why do you kill your foes?"

217.  Augustin answered:  We neither drag you to us against your will, nor do we kill our foes; but whatever we do in our dealings with you, though we may do it contrary to your inclination, yet we do it from our love to you, that you may voluntarily correct yourselves, and live an amended life.  For no one lives against his will; and yet a boy, in order to learn this lesson of his own free will, 2261 is beaten contrary to his inclination, and that often by the very man that is most dear to him.  And this, indeed, is what the kings would desire to say to you if they were to strike you, for to this end their power has been ordained of God.  But you cry out even when they are not striking you.



Nam nemo vivit invitus; et tamen puer ut hoc volens discat, invitus vapulat.  Perhaps a better reading is, "Nam nemo vult invitus; et tamen puer ut volens discat," etc., leaving out "hoc," which is wanting in the Fleury Mss.:  "No one wishes against his will; and yet a boy, wishing to learn, is beaten against his will."

Next: Chapter 96

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