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THE HIBBERT LECTURES,


1888.

The Hibbert
series

Trustees cannot add this volume to their

without a few lines of grateful acknowledgment.

It is impossible to forget either the courteous readiness

with which the accomplished author undertook the task


originally, or the admirable qualities

he brought to

it.

"When he died without completing the MS.

for the press,

the anxiety of the Trustees was at once relieved by the

kind

effort of his

family to obtain adequate assistance.

The public

will learn from the Preface

how much had

to

be done, and will join the Trustees in grateful appreciation of the services of the gentlemen

who responded

to

the occasion.

That Dr. Hatch's

friend, Dr. Fairbairn,

consented to edit the volume, with the valuable aid of

Mr. Bartlet and Professor Sanday, was an ample pledge


that the

want would be most

efficiently met.

To

those

gentlemen the Trustees are greatly indebted for the


learned
revision

and

earnest

care with which

the

laborious

was made.

AUG CI

iQsg

THE HIBBERT LECTUlh^^,^888,


THE

INFLUENCE OF GREEK IDEAS AND USAGES


UPON THE

CHRISTIAN CHURCH.
BT THE LATB

EDWIN" HATCH,

D.D.

READER IN BCCLESUSTIOAL HISTORT IN THE UNIVBKSITT OP OXFORD.

EDITED BY

A. M.

FAIEBAIRN,

D.D.

PRINCIPAL OP MANSFIELD COLLEGE, OXFORD.

SIXTH EDITION.

WILLIAMS AKD I^OEGATE,


14,

HENRIETTA STREET, COVENT GARDEN, LONDON; 20, SOUTH FREDERICK STREET, EDINBURGH
AND
7,

BROAD STREET, OXFORD.


1897.
\^AU Eights reserved.]

PJUKTED BT

LONDON C. GRKKN AND BOH,


:

178, STKAND.

PREFACE.

The

fittest

introduction to these Lectures will be a

few words of explanation.


Before his death, Dr. Hatch had written out and sent
to press the first eight Lectures.

Of

these he had cor-

rected six, while the proofs of the seventh and eighth,

with some corrections in his own hand, were found among


his papers.

As regards
:

these two, the duties of the editor


to correct

were simple

he had only

them

for the press.

But

as regards the remaining four Lectui'es, the


responsible.

work

was much more arduous and

continuous

MS., or even a connected outline of any one of the


Lectures, could not be said to exist.

The Lectures had

indeed been delivered a year and a half before, but the


delivery had been as
it

were

of selected passages,

with

the connections orally supplied, while the Lecturer did not always follow the order of his notes,
or, as

we know

from the Lectures he himself prepared

for the press, the

one into which he meant to work his finished material.

What came

into the editor's hands

was

a series of note-

VI

PREFACE,
first

books, which seemed at

sight but

an amorphous mass

or collection of hurried and disconnected jottings,


ink,

now in

now

in pencil

with a multitude of cross references

made by symbols and abbreviations whose very significance


had
and
to

be laboriously learned

with abrupt beginnings


with pages crowded with

still

more abrupt endings


it

successive strata, as

were, of reflections and references,


or entirely blank, speaking of

followed

by pages almost
meant
to

sections or fields

be further explored

with an

equal multitude of erasures,


plete,

now

complete,

now incom-

now

cancelled;

with passages marked as trans-

posed or as to be transposed, or with a sign of interrogation

which

indicated,

now

a suspicion as to the validity

or accuracy of a statement,

now

a simple suspense of

judgment,

now

a doubt as to position or relevance,

now

a simple query as of one asking.

Have

I not said this, or

something like

this,

before

In a word, what we had and the


literary
to

were the note-books

of the scholar

work-

man, well ordered, perhaps, as a garden

him who

made

it

and had the clue


to

to

it,

but at once a wilderness


in its making,
it

and a labyrinth and who had


it

him who had no hand

to discover the

way through
But

and out of

by research and experiment.

patient, and, I will

add, loving and sympathetic work, rewarded the editor

and his kind helpers.

The

clue

was found, the work

proved more connected and continuous than under the

PREFACE.

VU

conditions could have been thought to be possible, and

the result

is

now

presented to the world.

considerable proportion of the material for the ninth


;

Lecture had been carefully elaborated

but some of

it,

and the whole of the material


the state just described.

for the other three,

was

in

This of course added even more

to the responsibilities than to the labours of the editor.

In the body
been taken

of the Lectures

most scrupulous care has

to preserve the author's ipsissima verba, and,

wherever possible, the structure and form of his sentences.

But from the very


to

necessities of the case, the


little

hand had now and then

be allowed a

more

free-

dom

connecting words, headings, and even here and

there a transitional sentence or explanatory clause, had


to

be added

but in no single instance has a word,

phrase or sentence been inserted in the text without

warrant from some one part or another of these crowded


note-books.

With

the foot-notes

it

has been different.


difficulties

One
find

of our earliest

and most serious

was

to

whence many

of the quotations, especially in the

ninth Lecture, came.

The

author's

name was

given, but

often no clue to the book or chapter.

We
to

have been, I

think, in every case successful in tracing the quotation


to
its

source.

Another

difficulty

was

connect the

various references with the paragraph, sentence or state-

ment, each was meant to prove.'

This involved a

new

VIU

PREFACE.

labour; the sources had to be consulted alike for the

purposes of verification and determination of relevance

and

place.

The

references, too, in the note-books


it

were

often of the briefest, given, as

were, in algebraics, and

they had frequently to be expanded


while the search into the originals led
of excerpts,

and con-ected;
the

now to

making

and now

to the discovery of

new

authorities

which

it

seemed a pity not

to use.

As

a result, the

notes to Lecture IX. are mainly the author's, though all


as verified

by other hands
also

but the notes to Lecture X.,


This is

and in part
stated in

XL,

are largely the editor's.


all

order that

responsibility for errors


It

and

inaccuracies

may be

laid at the proper door.

seemed

to the editor that, while he could do little to

make the
had been

text what the author would have

made

it if it

by

his

own hand

prepared for the press, he was bound^


state of the

in the region

where the

MSS. made

a discreet

use of freedom not only possible but compulsory, to

make the book

as little

unworthy

of the scholarship
it

and

scrupulous accuracy of the author as


to do.

was in

his

power

The pleasant duty remains

of

thanking two friends


labours.

who have
Vernon

greatly lightened

my

The

first is

Bartlet,

M.A.; the second. Professor Sanday.

Mr. Bartlet's part has been the heaviest; without him


the work could never have been done.

He

laboured at

PREFACE.
the

IX

MSS.

till

the broken sentences became whole, and

the disconnected paragraphs

wove themselves together

and then he transcribed the black and bewildering pages


into clear

and legible copy

for the printer.

He

had

heard the Lectures, and had happily taken a few notes,


which, supplemented from other sources, proved most
helpful, especially in the
to

way

of determining the order

be followed.

He

has indeed been in every

way a
also

most unwearied and diligent co-worker.

To him we

owe the Synopsis

of Contents

and the Index.


all

Professor

Sanday has kindly read over

the Lectures that have

passed under the hands of the editor, and has furnished

him with most


dations.

helpful criticisms, suggestions, and emen-

The work
grateful that

is
it

sent out with a sad gratitude.

am
the

has been possible so far to

fulfil

author's design, but sad because he no longer lives to

serve the cause he loved so well.


to say a

This

is

not the place

word

either in criticism or in praise of

him

or

his work.

Those of us who knew him know how

little

book

like this expresses his

whole mind, or represents


in

all

that in this field he


is

had

it

him

to do.

The book

an admirable

illustration of his
it

method

in order to be judged aright,

ought to be judged
It is a study

within the limits he himself has drawn.


in historical development,

an analysis of some of the

PREFACE.

formal factors that conditioned a given process and de-

termined a given result

but

it

deals throughout solely

with these formal factors and the historical conditions

under which they operated.

He

never intended to

dis-

cover or discuss the transcendental causes of the process

on the one hand, or


of

to

pronounce on the value or validity

the result on the other.


;

His purpose,

like his

method,

was scientific and


of the

as an attempt at the scientific treatment


of ideas, of the evolution

growth and formulation

and establishment of usages within the Christian Church,


it

ought

to

be studied and

criticised.

Behind and beintellect,

neath his analytical method was a constructive

and beyond

his conclusions

was a

positive

and co-ordi-

nating conception of the largest and noblest order.


his

To

mind every
if

species of mechanical

Deism was

alien

and

his

method bears hardly upon the

traditions
lives in

and assumptions by which such a Deism


the region of early ecclesiastical history,
that he might prepare the

still it

was only
of a faith

way

for the

coming
of the

and a society that should be worthier


loved and the Church he served.

Master he

A. M. Fairbaien.

Oxford, Julyy 1890.

SYNOPSIS OF CONTENTS.

Lecture

I.

INTRODUCTOEY.
The Problem How the Church passed from the Sermon on the Mount
a change in
soil
:

page
to

the Nicene Creed ; the change in spirit coincident with


...
...

...

...

...

1,2
2

The need
1.

of caution

two preliminary considerations

...

A religion relative to
mind during the

the whole mental attitude of an age

hence need to estimate the general attitude of the Greek


first

three centuries a.d.


religious belief
:

...

...

3,

2.

Every permanent change in

and usage

rooted in historical conditions

roots of the Gospel in

Judaism, but of fourth century Christianity


to historical

in Hellenism
as to

the
...

key
...

...

...

4,5

The Method
Evidence

as to process of

change scanty, but ample and


Eespects in which evi... ... ...
...

representative

ante -Nicene Greek thought and

post-Nicene Christian thought.

dence defective

...

10

Two
1.

resulting tendencies

To

overrate the value of the surviving evidence.

2.

To under-estimate opinions no longer accessible or known


only through opponents
... ...

...

...

10

Hence method, the


Antecedents
:

correlation of antecedents

and consequents 11
...

13
14
14

sketch of the phenomena of Hellenism

13,

Consequents

changes in original Christian ideas and usages

XU
Attitude of
1.

SYNOPSIS OF CONTENTS.
PAGE

mind required

...

...

...

...
...

...

15
15, IG

Demand upon
Need
(a)

attention and imagination

...
...

2.
3.

Personal prepossessions to be allowed for


to observe under-currents, e.g.

...

17, 18

The

dualistic hypothesis, its bearing on


...

baptism
...

and exorcism
(h)

...

...

...

19,

20
21

The nature of religion,


:

e.g. its

relation to conscience

History as a scientific study

the true apologia in religion

21

24

Lecture

II.

GEEEK EDUCATION.
The first step a study of environment, particularly as The contemporary Greek world an educated world in
literary sense
I,
..

literary.

a special

...

...

...

...

...

25

27

Its

forms varied, but

all literary

Grammar
Rhetoric

2830 3032
...

A
1.

"lecture-room" Philosophy

...

32

35

II. Its influence

shown by

Direct literary evidence

...

...

...

35

37
40 42 48
49

2.

Recognized and lucrative position of the teaching


profession
...

...

...
...

...
...

37

3. 4.

Social position of

its

professors

40

Its persistent survival

up

to

to-day in general
...

education, in special terms and usages


Into such an artificial habit of

42
...

mind

Christianity

came

48,

Lecture

III.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN EXEGESIS.


To the Greek the mystery of writing, the reverence
for antiquity,

the belief in inspiration, gave the ancient poets a unique

value

...

50, 51

SYNOPSIS OF CONTENTS.

XUl
PAGE

Homer, his place in moral education


ethics, physics,

used by the Sophists in


... ... ...

metaphysics, &c.

52

57
64

Apologies for this use culminate in allegory, especially

among the
The

Stoics

...

...

...

...

57

Allegoric temper widespread, particularly in things religious.

Adopted by Hellenistic Jews,


Philo

especially at Alexandria

6569
harmony with Greek
...

Continued by early Christian exegesis in varied schools,


chiefly as regards the Prophets, in

thought, and as a main line of apologetic

69

74

Application to the

New

Testament writings by the Gnostics


...
...

and the Alexandrines


Its aid as solution of the

...

...

...

75,70

Old Testament problem, especially in

Origen
Reactions both Hellenic and Christian
1.
:

7779
viz.

in
...

The

Apologists' polemic against

Greek mythology

79,

80 80

2. 3.

The Philosophers' polemic

against Christianity

...

Certain Christian Schools, especially the Antiochene


... ...
..

81,

82 82

Here hampered by dogmatic complications

Use and abuse of

allegory

the poetry

of life

...

...

82, 83

Alien to certain drifts of the modern


1. 2.

spirit, viz.
..
.

Historic handling of literature

...

...

...

84
84, 85

Recognition of the living voice of

God

Lecture IV.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN RHETORIC.


The period one
of widely diffused literary culture.
Schools, old

The Rhetorical

and new

...

...

86

88

Sophistic largely pursued the old lines of Rhetoric, but also

philosophized and preached professionally


Its

88
... ...

manner of

discourse

its

rewards

94

94 99

Objections of earnest
tetus

men

reaction led

by Stoics

like Epic-

99105

XIV

SYNOPSIS OF CONTENTS.
PAOX 105
v.

Significance for Christianity

...

Primitive Christian "prophesying"

later

"preaching."
e.g.

Preaching of composite origin


fourth century, A,D.
:

its

essence and form,

in

preachers sometimes itinerant


... ...

Summary and

conclusions

...

...

113 113 115


105

Lecture V.

CHEISTIANITY
Abstract ideas

AND GREEK PHILOSOPHY.


of the

among the Greeks, who were hardly aware

different degrees

of precision possible in mathematics

philosophy

and 116
118

118

Tendency

to define strong

with them, apart from any


...
...

criterion; hence dog^nas

...

120
123

Dogmatism, amid decay of


yet

originality
...

reaction towards doubt;


...
...

Dogmatism regnant

...

120

"Palestinian Philosophy," a complete contrast

...

123, 124

Fusion of these in the Old Catholic Church achieved through

an underlying kinship of ideas

...

...

...

125,126
126

Explanations of this from both sides


Philosophical Judaism as a bridge,
e.g.,

...

...

128

in allegorism and

cosmology
Christian philosophy partly apologetic, partly speculative.

128, 129

Alarm

of Conservatives

the second century one of tran...


...
...

sition

and

conflict

...

130

133
134

The

issue,

compromise, and a certain habit of mind


to the

...

133, 134
...

Summary answer

main question
:

...

...

The Greek mind seen 1. The tendency


2.
3.

in

to define
to speculate
i.e.

...
...

...
...

...
...
...

... ... ...

135

The tendency
The point

136
137

of emphasis,

Orthodoxy

Further development in the West.


the true damnosa h ereditas
...

But Greece the source of


...

1 37, 1 38

SYNOPSIS OF CONTENTS.

XV

Lecture VI.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN


The average morality

ETHICS.
PAGE
139, 140

of the age: its moral philosophy


...
...

An

age of moral reformation


1.

...

...
...

140
...

142
142

Relation of ethics to philosophy and

life

Revived

practical bent of Stoicism

Epictetus
...

143
...

147 147

A moral gymnastic
(1) Askesis

cultivated
:

,.

...

(aa-Kr^a-is)

Philo, Epictetus,

Dio

Chrysostom
(2)
2.

148150
or moral reformer
...

The "philosopher"

150

152

The contents
reference.

of ethical teaching,
Epictetus'

marked by a religious two maxims, " Follow Nature,"

"Follow God"
Christian ethics

152155
difference
;

show agreement amid


;

based upon

the Divine
sized at
1.

command

idea of sin

agreement most empha...

first, i.e.

the importance of conduct


:

158, 159
:"

Tone of

earliest Christian writings


i.

the
...

"Two "Ways
...

Apostolical Constitutions, Bk.


2.

159
v.

162

Place of discipline in Christian


later corpus

life

Puritan ideal
... ...

permixtum
:

...

162

164
168

Further developments due to Greece


1.

Church

within
...

the
...

Church
...

askesis,
... ...

ticism...
2.

Monas164

Resulting deterioration of average ethics

Ambrose of
168, 169

Milan

Complete victory of Greek ethics seen in the basis of modern


society

169, 17G

XTl

SYNOPSIS OF CONTENTS.

Lecture VII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.


L The
The
idea of

Creator.

PAGE

One God, begotten

of the unity

and order of the

world, and connected with the ideas of personality and mind.

Three elements in the idea


lute

Creator,

Moral Governor, Abso-

Being
of idea of a beginning:

171174
Monism and Dualism
...

Growth
1.

174, 175

Monism

of the Stoics

natura naturata and naturans

a beginning not necessarily involved


2.

175

Dualism, Platonic

creation recognized
:

...

177

177 180

Syncretistic blending of these as to process

Logos idea common.


:

Hence

Philo's significance
;

God
is

as Creator

Monistic and

Dualistic aspects

his terms for the Forces in their plurality

and unity
world
Earlj'-

after all,

God

Creator, even Father, of the

180188
but questions as to mode emerged, and the
... ...
...
...

Christian idea of a single supreme Artificer took perma;

nent root

first

answers were tentative


1.

Evolutional typo

supplemented by idea of a lapse

190 190 194


188
194

2.

Creational type accepted

There remained
(i.)

The ultimate
solutions
:

relation

of matter to

God

Dualistic

Basilides' Platonic theory the basis of the

later doctrine,
(ii.)

though not

at once recognized
:

194

198 200

The

Creator's contact with matter


:

Mediation hypo...
...

thesis
(iii.)

the

Z(0<70s

solution
:

...

198

Imperfection and evil

Monistic and Dualistic answers,


... ... ...

especially Marcion's

200, 201

But the Divine Unity overcomes

all

position of Irena^us, &c.,

widely accepted: Origen's cosmogony a theodicy.


of the simpler view seen in Monarchianism

Prevalence
...

202

207

Results

207, 208

SYNOPSIS OF CONTENTS.

XYll

Lecture VIII.

GEEEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.


II.

The Moral Governor.


and order
page 209

A.

The Greek Idea.


1.

Unity of God and Unity of the world


Order, number, necessity and destiny
:

will

intelligent force

and law

209211
as a city-state (ttoAis)
...

The Cosmos
2.

...

211,212
and 213

New

conceptions of the Divine Nature

Justice
...

Goodness in connection with Providence


Tlius about the Christian era

215

we

find Destiny

and Providence,

and a tendency
of the terra
3.

to synthesis

through two stages in the use


215217
:

God
of evil emerges

The problem
(a)

attempts at solution.

Universality of Providence denied (Platonic and


Oriental)

217

(6) Eeality of apparent evils denied (Stoic)

217

220 223

This not pertinent to moral


(c)

evil,
...

hence
...
:

Theory of human freedom

220, 221

Its relation to Universality of Providence

the

Stoical theodicy exemplified in Epictetus 221

B.

The Christian Idea.


Primitive Christianity a contrast
1.
:

two main conceptions.


...

Wages

for

work done

...

2.

Positive

Law

God a Lawgiver and Judge


two
types.
...
...
:

...

Difficulties in fusing the


(i.)

Forgiveness and

Law

Marcion's ditheism

Solution in Irenaus, Tertullian, &c.


(ii.)

result

The Moral Governor and

Free-will.

Marcion's dualistic view of moral evil


Justin Martyr, Tatian, Irenaeus
Tertullian and the Alexandrines
...

Origen's comprehensive theodicy

by

aid of Stoicism

and Neo-Platonism

233237
5

x^all

SYNOPSIS of contents.

Lecture IX.

GREEK AKD CHRISTIAN" THEOLOGY.


III.

God as the Supreme

Being.

PAQB
Christian Theology shaped
basis

by Greece, though on

a Jewish

238, 239

A.

The Idea and

its

Develojmient in Greek Philosophy.

Parallel to Christian speculation in three stages.


1.

Transcendence of God.
History of the idea before and after Plato
Its
...

240

243
244

two forms, transcendent proper and supra- cosmic


e.g.

Blending with religious feeling,


2.

in Philo

...

244,245

Revelation of the Transcendent.

Through intermediaries
(i.)

Mythological
Philosophical,
e.g.

246
in Philo

(ii.)

246, 247

3.

Distinctions in the nature of God.


Philo's Logos

247,248
rela-

Conceived both monistically and dualistically in


tion to

God

249
. . .

But especially under metaphor of generation


B.
1.

250

The Idea and

its

Development in Christian Theology.


is

Here the idea of Transcendence


Present in the Apologists

at first absent
...

250

252

...

..
first
...

252,253
empha254

But God as transcendent (v, supra-cosmic) sized by Basilides and the Alexandrines
2.

256

Mediation

Revelation) of the Transcendent, a vital

problem

256,257
7nanifestation
...
...

TheouGS oi modal

257,258
258
259

Dominant idea that of modal existence (i.) As manifold so among certain Gnostics
:

...

(ii.)

As

constituting a unity

SYNOPSIS OF CONTENTS.

xix
PAGE

Its Gnostic forms

259, 260
logoi
to

Eelation
Justin

of

the

the

Logos,

especially

in

260262
is

The
3.

issue

the Logos doctrine of Irenseus

...

262, 263

Distinctions in the nature of


(i.)

God based on

the Logos.

Theories as to the genesis of the Logos, analogous to those as to the world


...

263, 264

Theories guarding the "sole monarchy," thus endangered,

culminate in Origen's idea of eternal generation


(ii.)

265

267

Theories of the nature of the Logos determined

by either the supra-cosmic or transcendental


idea of

God

267,268
a stage

Origen marks a stage


versies

and but
...

in the contro-

268, 269

Greek elements in the subsequent developments.


Ousia
;

its

history

...

...

...

...

269

272
277

Difficulty felt in applying

it to

God
...

273, 274
274, 275

As

also

with homoousios : need of another term


its

Hypostasis:

history

...

...

...

...

275

Comes
tism

to

need definition by a third term

(ttpoo-wttov)

277, 278

Eesum6

of the use of these terms; the reign of

dogma278

280

Three underlying assumptions

a legacy of the Greek

spirit

280, 281

L The
2.

importance of metaphysical distinctions.

Their absolute truth.

3.

The nature

of God's perfection.

Conclusion

282

XX

SYNOPSIS OF CONTENTS.

Lecture X.

THE INFLUENCE OF THE MYSTERIES UPON


CHRISTIAN USAGES.
PAGE

A. The
Greek
religion.

Greek Mysteries and Related

Cults.

Mysteries and religious associations side by side with ordinary

L The

Mysteries,
(i.)

e.g. at

Eleusis

283,284
lustra-

Initial Purification,

through confession and

tion (baptism)
(ii.)
(iii.)

285287
...

Sacrifices, -with procession, &c.

...

287, 288

Mystic Drama, of nature and


:

human
...

life

288
sacri-

290

2.

Other religious associations


fice

condition of entrance,
... ...

and common meal


extent of the above
B.

290, 291

Wide

291,292
the Church.

The Mysteries and


;

Transition to the Christian Sacraments


special
1.

influence, general

and

292294
:

Baptism

Its primitive simplicity

...
:

...

...

...

294, 295

Later period marked by


(i.)

(ii.)

Change of w?ne Change of ime and conception


parallelism

295,296 296,297
298

Minor confirmations of the


2.

300

The Lord's Supper


Stages of extra-biblical development,
Apost. Const., the "altar,"
teries"
its

e.g.

in Didach6,
as

offerings

"mys-

300303
fifth

Culmination of tendency in

century in Dionysius

303
viz.

305

The tendency
Gnostics

strongest

in

the

most Hellenic

circles,

305, 306
... ...

Secrecy and long catechumenato

306, 307

Anointing

...

...

...
...

...
...

307, 308
308, 309

Realistic change of conception

...

Conclusion

...

...

...

...

309

SYNOPSIS OF CONTENTS.

XXL

Lecture

XL

THE LNCOEPORATION OF CHRISTIAN IDEAS, AS MODIFIED BY GREEK, INTO A BODY OF DOCTRINE.


"Faith" in Old Testament =
trust

PAGE
trust in a person.

In Greek philosophy = intellectual conviction In Philo, these blend into trust in God
city, i.e. in

310, 311
vera-

in His
...
...

the Holy Writings


for certainty based

...

311, 312
...

Contemporary longing

on

fact

312

Here we have the germs of ... ment Canon ...


1.

(1) the Creed, (2) the


...
... ...

New
...

Testa...

313

At

first
;

emphasis on

its ethical

purpose and revealed

basis

then the latent intellectual element emerges,


... ...

though not uniformly

...

...

315

The baptismal formula becomes a

test.
...

Expansion by "apostolic teaching"

316,317

The "Apostles' Creed" and the Bishops


2.

317319

Related question as to sources of the Creed and the


materials for
its interpretation.
:

Value of written tradition


limit

influence of
:

Old Testament
apostolicity
as

and common idea of prophecy


Marcion and

319,320
the idea of a

Canon
it

...

...

320,321
321

"Faith" assumes the sense


3.

had

in Philo

But the speculative temper remained


"rule of faith:" yvwo-ts alongside
at Alexandria
:

active
Trio-Tts,

upon the
especially

Origen

...

...

...

321

323

Hence tendency

to

(1) Identify a fact


(2)

with speculations upon

it

...

323, 324

Check individual speculations in favour of those of the


majority

324326

XXU
Results
(i.)

SYNOPSIS OF CONTENTS.
page

Such speculations formulated and inserted in the Creed,


formally as interpretations
the importance attached to
:

belief changed, but not


... ...

it

327,328
329

(ii.)

Distinction between "majority" and " minority" views


at a meeting,

on points of metaphysical speculation

Resum^

of the stages of belief


...

329,330
...

Underlying conceptions to bo noted

...

330,331

(1) Philosophic regard for exact definition.


(2) Political belief in a majority.

(3) Belief in the finality of the views of


tained.

an age so

ascer-

Development,

if

admitted, cannot be arrested

...

...

332

Place of speculation in Christianity

332, 333

Lecture XII.

THE TRANSFORMATION OF THE BASIS OF CHRISTIAN UNION DOCTRINE IN THE PLACE OF CONDUCT.
:

Association at
tianity

first
...

voluntary, according to the genius of Chris... ... ...


...

...

334, 335
characi.),

Its basis primarily


teristic
:

moral and spiritual

Holiness

its

the "

Two Ways,"
:

Apost. Const. (Bk.

the

Elchasaites

335337
its

Also a

common Hope

changing form

...

337, 338

Coincident relaxation of bonds of discipline and change in idea


of the

Church
stress also

338,339
upon the
intellectural

Growing

clement
...

...
...

339, 340 340, 341

Causes for

this,

primary and collateral

(1) Importance given to Baptism


its relation to

realistically
...

conceived
...

the ministrant
:

341,342
moral
for-

(2)

Intercommunion
(e.g.

the necessary test at

first

Didache),
...

subsequently a
... ... ...

doctrinal
...

mula

343

345

SYNOPSIS OF CONTENTS.

XXIU
PAGE

This elevation of doctrine due to causes internal to the Christian

communities

but an external factor enters with case of Paul


its results
...

ofSamosata:

...

...

...

345

347

Lines of reaction against this transformation


(1) Puritan or conservative tendency
:

Novatianism

347,348
348, 349

(2)

Formation of esoteric

class

with higher moral ideal

Monachism
Conclusion
:

The Greek

spirit still lives in Christian

Churches: the
...

vital question is its relation to Christianity

349, 350

Two

theories

permanence of the primitive, assimilative


logical third
...

development: no

...

...

350, 351
...

On

either theory, the

Greek element may largely go

351

The problem

pressing

our study a necessary preliminary and


...

truly conservative

...

...

...

...

...

352

New ground here


of the future

broken

a pioneer's forecast

the Christianity
,

352,353

Lecture

I.

IITTEODUCTOEY.

It

is

impossible for any one, wl.etlier he be a student

of history or no, to fail to notice a difference of both

form and content between the Sermon on the Mount and


the Nicene Creed.

The Sermon on
of conduct
; ;

the
it

Mount

is

the

promulgation of a

new law

assumes beliefs

rather than formulates them

the theological conceptions

which underlie
absent.

it

belong to the ethical rather than the


metaphysics are wholly
a statement partly of his-

speculative side of theology;

The Mcene Creed


and partly
of
it

is

torical facts

dogmatic inferences ; the metacontains would probably have


;

physical terms which

been unintelligible
place in
it.

to the first disciples


to

ethics

have no

The one belongs


is

a world of Syrian

peasants, the other to a world of

Greek philosophers.
it is

The

contrast

patent.

If

any one thinks that


that the one
is

v^

sufficiently explained

by saying
it

a sermon
in reply

and the other a creed,


that the question

must be pointed out


and

why

an ethical sermon stood in the


a meta-

forefront of the teaching of Jesus Christ,

physical creed in the forefront of the Christianity of the

fourth century,

is

a problem

which claims
it

investigation.

It claims investigatioUj

but B

has not yet been inves*

2
tigatcd.

I.

INTRODUCTORY.

There have been inquiries, which in some cases


at positive results, as to the causes of par-

have arrived

ticular changes

or

developments in Christianity

the

development, for example, of th^ doctrine of the Trinity,


or of the theory of a Catholic Church.

But the main


is

question to which I invite your attention


to all such inquiries.
societies

antecedent

It asks, not

how

did the Christian

come

to

believe one proposition rather than

another, but

how

did they

come

to the

frame of mind

which attached importance


and made the assent
condition of
to the

to either the one or the other,

one rather than the other a

membership.
first

In investigating this problem, the


obvious to an inquirer
of gravity
is,

point that

is

that the change in the centre

from conduct

to belief is coincident

with the

transference of Christianity from a Semitic to a Greek


soil.

The presumption

is

that

it

was the

result of

Greek

influence.

It will appear

from the Lectures which follow


Their general subject
is,

that this presumption

is true.

consequently,

The Influence

of Greece

upon

Christianity.

The
subject

difficulty, the interest,

and the importance


to

of the
it

make
It

it

incumbent upon us
necessary to bear
it
;

approach

with

caution.

is

many

points in

mind

as

we

enter upon

and I will begin by asking your

attention to two considerations, which, being true of


all

analogous phenomena of religious development and

change,

may be presumed
us.
first is,
is

to

bo true of the particular

phenomena before
1.

The

that the religion of a given race at a

given time

relative to the

whole mental attitude of

I.

INTRODUCTORY.
to

that time.

It is impossible

separate the religious


in the

phenomena from the other phenomena,


that

same way

yon can separate a vein


it is

of silver

from the rock in

which

embedded.

They

are as

much determined by
its soil,

the general characteristics of the race as the fauna and


flora of a geographical area are
its climate,

determined by

and

its

cultivation

and they vary with the


as the fauna

changing characteristics
flora of

of the race

and

the tertiary system differ from those of the chalk.

They

are separable from the whole mass of phenomenaj,


fact,

not in

but only in thought.

We

may

concentrate
still

our attention chiefly upon them, but they


part of the whole complex
life

remain

of the time,

and they
life.

cannot be understood except in relation to that

If

any one
will ask

hesitates to accept this historical induction, I

him

to take the instance that lies nearest to him,

and

to consider

phenomena
doubts,
its

of

how he could understand the religious our own country in our own time its

hopes,

its

varied
its

enterprises,

its

shifting

enthusiasms,
its

its noise,

learning, its eestheticism,


of the
arts,

and

philanthropies

unless he took account

growth
of the

of the inductive sciences

and the mechanical

expansion of literature, of the social

stress, of

the com-

mercial activity, of the general drift of society towards


its

own improvement.
In dealing, therefore, with the problem before
us,

we

must endeavour
attitude of the

to realize to ourselves the

whole mental

Greek world in the


must take account

first

three centuries

of our

era.
its

We
its

of the breadth

and

depth of
sophy, of

education, of the

many

currents of
its

its

philoits

love of literature, of

scepticism and

4
mysticism.

I.

IXTEODUCTORT.

We

must gather together whatever evidence

we can
sion,

find,

not determining the existence or measuring

the extent of drifts of thought by their literary exjores-

but taking note also of the testimony of the monuof art

ments

and

history, of paintings

and sculptures,

of

inscriptions
at

and laws.

In doing

so,

we

musi^ be content,

any

rate for the present

and

until the

problem has

been more fully elaborated, with the broader features

both

of the

Greek world and

of the early centuries.

The

distinctions

which the precise study of history requires


Asia Minor, and between the age of the

us to draw between the state of thought of Greece proper

and that

of

Antonines and that of the Severi, are not necessary for


our immediate purpose, and

may

be

left to

the minuter

research which has hardly yet begun,


v/
2.

The second
is

consideration

is,

that no permanent

change takes place in the religious beliefs or usages of


a race which

not rooted in the existing beliefs and

usages of that race.

The truth which

Aristotle enun-

ciated, that all intellectual teaching is


is

based upon what

previously

known

to the person taught,^ is applicable

to a race as well as to an in lividual,

and

to beliefs
is,

even

more than

to

knowledge.

religious

change

like a

physiological change, of the nature of assimilation by,

and absorption

into,

existing elements.

The

religion
It

which our Lord preached was rooted

in Judaism.

came

''

not to destroy, but to


Kal iraaa

fulfil."

It took the

Jewish

TTucra Oi5tt(TKttA(a

jxi9r](TL'i
i.

otaro)yTt/<i) 6K 7rpovapyov(Ti]<i

yiviTai yKJcrews (Arist. Anal,

j^ost.

1, p.

71).

John
is laid

I'liilopouus, in

his note on the passage, points out that emphasis


SiavoijTiKi'j, in
or/v
'i)^ci

upon the word


196

antithesis to sensible knowledge,

7;

yap

alcrOijTiK^] yvwcris
6).

-pov-OKHiiunp' yvwjiv (Sc/toL

ed. Brandis, p.

I.

INTRODUCTORY.
it

conception of a Father in heaven, and gave

new

meaning.

It took existing moral precepts,


application.

and gave
applica-

them a new

The meaning and the

tion had already been anticipated in some degree by the Jewish prophets. There were Jewish minds which had yu a.-^ been ripening for them and so far as they were ripe for "h*"**^ '
;

them, they received them.


find that the

In a similar way we

shall

Greek Christianity

of the fourth century

was rooted

in Hellenism.

The Greek minds which had

been ripening for Christianity had absorbed new ideas

and new motives; but there was a continuity between their present and their past; the new ideas and new
motives mingled with the waters of existing currents;

and

it is

only by examining the sources and the volume

of the previous flow that

we

shall

understand

how

it is

that the !N"icene Creed rather than the

Sermon on the
^

Mount has formed


Christianity.

the

dominant element in Aryan

The method of the investigation, like that of all investigations, must be determined by the nature of the evidence. The special feature of the evidence which aff'ects the method is, that it is ample in regard to the causes,
and ample
also in regard to the eff'ects,

but scanty in

regard to the process of change.

We

have ample evidence in regard to the

state of

Greek thought during the ante-Nicene period.


winters shine with a

The
side

dim and

pallid light

when put
;

by
to

side with the master-spirits of the Attic age

but

their lesser importance in the scale of genius rather adds

than diminishes from their importance as representa-

b
tives.

I.

IXTRODrCTORY.
cliildrcn of their time.

They were more the

They
its

are consequently better evidence as to the currents of

men who supremely transcended it. I will mention those from whom we shall derive most informathought than
tion, in the

hope that you will in course


with their names, but

of time
also

become

familiar, not only

with their

works.

Dio

of Prusa,

commonly known

as

Dio Chry-

sostom, " Dio of the golden mouth,"

who was raised above

the class of travelling orators to which he belonged, not

only by his singular literary


of his character

skill,

but also by the nobility


of his protests against

and the vigour

political unrighteousness.

Epictetus, the lame slave, the

Socrates of his time, in

whom

the morality and the reli-

gion of the Greek world find their sublimest expression,

and whoso conversations and lectures

at ISTicopolis, taken
reflect

down, probably in short-hand, by a faithful pupil,

exactly, as in a photograph, the interior life of a great


moralist's
school.

Plutarch, the prolific essayist and

diligent

encyclopaedist,

whose materials are

far

more

valuable to us than the edifices which he erects with

them.

Maximus

of Tyre, the eloquent preacher, in

whom

the cold metaphysics of the

Academy

arc transmuted into

a glowing mysticism.
philosopher, in
losophies are

Marcus Aurelius, the imperial


or darkened

whose mind the fragments of many phi-

lit

by hope

by

despair, as the

clouds float and drift in uncertain sunlight or in gathered

gloom before the clearing


wit,

rain.

Lucian, the

satirist

and

the prose Aristophanes of later Greece.

Sextus

Empiricus, whose writings

gathered under his

name

the are
or

collection of writings

tlic

richest of all

mines
Philo-

for the investigation of later

Greek philosophy.

I.

INTRODUCTORY.

stratus, the

author of a great religious romance, and of


It

many

sketches of the lives of contemporary teachers.

will hardly be

an anachronism

if

we add

to these the
;

great syncretist philosopher, Philo of Alexandria

for,

on

the one hand, he was more Greek than Jew, and, on the
other, several of the

works which are gathered together


to

under his name seem


quent
to his

belong to a generation subse-

own, and to be the only survivors of the


cities

Judseo-Greek schools which lasted on in the great


of the empire until the verge of Christian times.

We have

ample evidence also as

to the state of Chris-

tian thought in the

post-Mcene
Gregory
of

period.

The Fathers
Gregory of
of general

Athanasius, Basil,
jN'yssa,

Nazianzus,

and Cyril of Jerusalem, the decrees


form a

and

local Councils,

the apocryphal and pseudonymous


clear conception of the

literature, enable us to

change which Greek influences had wrought.

But the evidence


effects

as to the

mode

in Avhich the causes

operated within the Christian sphere before the final

were produced

is

singularly imperfect.

If

we

look at the literature of the schools of thought which


ultimately became dominant,

we

find that

it

consists for
It tells us

the most part of some accidental survivals.^

about some parts of the Christian world, but not about


others.
^

It represents a
c,

few phases
5) singles

of

thought with

Tertullian {adv. Valentin,

out four writers of the


:

previous generation

whom

he regards as standing on an equal footing

Justin, Miltiades, Iren^us, Proculus.

Of

these, Proculus has entirely


;

perished

of Miltiades, only a

few fragments remain

Justin survives
i.

in only a single

MS.

(see

A. Harnack, Texte und Untersuchungen, Bd.

1,

die Ueherlieferung dergriechischen Apologeten des zweitenJalirlmnderts)',

and the

greater part of Irenaeus remains only in a Latin translation.

I.

INTRODUCTORY.
it

adequate fulness, and of others


fossils.

presents only a few

In regard

to Palestine,

which in the third and


of culture,

fourth centuries

was a great centre

we have

only the evidence of Justin Martyr.

In regard to Asia

Minor, which seems to have been the chief crucible for


the alchemy of transmutation,

we have but such

scanty

fragments as those of Melito and Gregory of l^eocsesarea.

The

largest

and most important monuments are those of

Alexandria, the works of Clement and Origen, which


represent a stage of singular interest in the jDrocess of
philosophical development.

Of the

Italian wiiters,

we

have

little

that

is

genuine besides Hippolytus.


chiefly Irenseus,

Of Gal-

ilean writers,

we have

whose

results are

important as being the earliest formulating of the oj)inions

which ultimately became dominant, but whose method


of the rhetorical schools.

is

mainly interesting as an example of the dreary polemics

Of African

writers,

we have

Tertullian, a skilled lawyer,

who would
;

in

modern times

have taken high rank as a pleader at the bar or as a


leader of Parliamentary debate

and Cyprian, who sur-

vives chiefly as a champion of the sacerdotal hypothesis,

and whose vigorous personality gave him a moral


powers.

influ-

ence which was far beyond the measure of his intellectual

The evidence

is

not only imperfect, but also

insuflicient in relation to the effects that

were produced.

Writers of the stamp of Justin and Irenceus are wholly


inadequate to account for either the conrersion of the

educated world to Christianity, or for the forms which


Christianity

assumed when

the

educated world had

moulded

it.

And

if

we

look for the literature of the schools of

I.

INTROBUCTORY.
as heretical,

thoiiglit

which were ultimately branded

we

look almost wholly in vain. philosophers thonght,


significant exceptions,

What

the earliest Christian

we know, with

comparatively in-

only from the writings of their


subject to a double hate
left,

opponents.
of the

They were

that
of

heathen schools which they had

and that

the Christians
philosophy.^

who The little

were saying "


trust that

l*^on

possumus"

to

we

can place in the

them is shown by the wide differences in those accounts. Each opjoonent, with the dialectical skill which was common at the
accounts which their opponents give of
time, selected, paraphrased, distorted,

and re-combined

the points which seemed to


result
is,

him

to

be weakest.

The

naturally, that the accounts

which the several


It

opponents give are so different in form and feature as


to

be irreconcilable with one another.^

was

so also

with the heathen opponents of Christianity.^


^

"With one

Marcion, in the sad tone of one 'who bitterly

felt

that every man's

hand was against him, addresses one of his in hate and wretchedness" (o-v/x/ztcroi'/xevoi'
adv. 31 arc.
2

disciples as
/cat

"my

partner

crvvTaXaiTrwpov, Tert.

4. 9).

Examples are the accounts of Basilides in Clement of Alexandria and Hippolytus, compared with those in Irenjeus and Epiphanius ; and the accounts of the Ophites in Hippolytus, compared with those of Irena3us and Epiphanius. The literature of the subject is considerable
see especially A. Hilgenfeld, die Keizergescliiclite des Urcliristeiithum^
(e.g.

p.

202); E. A. Lipsius, zur

Qiielleiilcriiik

des Epiphanios

and

A. Harnack, zur Quellenlaitik der Gesclddde des Gnosticismus.


^

The YGvy names

of most of the heathen opponents are lost

Lac-

tantius (5. 4) speaks of "plurimos et raultis in locis et


Grrecis sed etiam Latinis litteris."

non modo

But for the ordinary student, Keim's remarkable restoration of the work of Celsus from the quotations of
Origen, with
losses (Th.
its

wealth of illustrative notes, compensates for


Celsus'

many

Keim,

Wahrcs Wort, Zurich, 1873).

10

I.

INTRODUCTORY.
the

important exceiDtion,

we cannot tell how


philosophers outside

struck a dispassionate outside observer,


that
it left

new religion or why it was


Then,

so

many

its fold.

as now, the forces of

human

nature were at work.


is

The
not
the

tendency to disparage and suppress an opponent


jDCCuliar to the early ages of Christianity.

When

associated Christian

communities won at length their

hard-fought battle, they burned the enemy's camp.


This fact of the scantiness and inadequacy of the
evidence as to the process of transformation has led to

two

results

which constitute

difficulties

and dangers in

our path.
1.

The one

is

the tendency to overrate the value of

the evidence that has survived.

When

only two or three


it is difficult

monuments

of a great

movement remain,
tend at almost
all

to

appreciate the degree in which those


representative.

monuments

are

We

times to attach
;

an exaggerated importance
writers

to individual writers

the

who have moulded

the thoughts of their contem-

poraries, instead of being

moulded by them, are always

few in number and exceptional.


writers

We

tend also to attach

an undue importance to phrases which occur in such


;

few,

if

any, writers write with the precision of

a legal document, and the inverted pyramids which have

been built upon chance phrases of Clement or Justin are

monuments
2.

of caution

which we

shall

do well to keep

before our eyes.

The other
or

is

the tendency to under-estimate the

importance of the opinions that have disappeared from


sight,

which we know only in the form and


If

to the

extent of their quotation by their opponents.

we were

I.

INTRODUCTOHY.

11
current,

to trust tlie histories that are

commonly

we

should believe that there was from the

first

a body of

doctrine of which certain writers were the recognized

exponents

and that outside

this

body of doctrine there

was only the play of more or


like a fitful guerilla warfare

less insignificant opinions,

on the flanks of a great

army.

Whereas what we
is,

really find

on examining the

evidence

that out of a mass of opinions which for a

long time fought as equals upon equal ground, there was

formed a vast alliance which was strong enough


off the
lation,

to

shake

extremes at once of conservatism and of specu-

but in which the speculation whose monuments


less

have perished had no


of which some

a share than the conservatism

monuments have survived.

This survey of the nature of the evidence enables us


to determine the

method which we should follow.


and we can see the
effects
;

We can

trace the causes

but we have

only scanty information as to the intermediate processes.


If the evidence as to those processes existed in greater

mass,

if

the writings of those

who made

the

first

tenta-

tive efforts to give to Christianity a

Greek form had been


to follow in

preserved to us,

it

might have been possible

order of time and country the influence of the several

groups of ideas upon the several groups of Christians.


This method hasbeen attempted, with questionable success,

by some

of those

who have
But

investigated the history of

particular doctrines.

it is

impossible to dej)recate

too strongly the habit of erecting theories

upon

historical

quicksands

and I propose

to pursue the surer path to


points,

which the nature of the evidence

by

stating the

12
causes,

I.

INTRODUCTORY.

by viewing

tlicm in relation to the effects, and


far they

by considering liow
There
is

were adequate in

resjoect of

both mass and complexity to produce those


v/
is

effects.

a consideration in favour of this method which

in entire

harmony with
It

that
is,

which

arises

from the

nature of the evidence.

that the changes that took

place were gradual and at

first

hardly perceptible.
if

It

would probably be impossible, even

we were

in posses-

sion of ampler evidence, to assign a definite cause

and a

definite date for the introduction of each separate idea.

For the early years

of Christianity

were in some respects


It has sometimes been

like the early years of our lives.

thought that those early years are the most important


years in the education of
all of us.

"We learn then, we

hardly

know how, through


by

effort

and struggle and inno-

cent mistakes, to use our eyes and our ears, to measure


distance and direction, a process

which ascends by

unconscious steps to the certainty which


maturity.
degree,
is

we

feel in

our

We

are helped in doing

so, to

an incalculable

by the accumulated experience


up
in language
;

of

mankind which
is

stored

but the growth

our own, the


It

unconscious development of our

own powers.

was

in

some such rmconscious way that the Christian thought


of the earlier centuries gradually acquired the form

which

WT
its

when it emerges, as it were, into the developed manhood of the fourth century. Greek pliilosophy helped
find

development, as language helps a child


it

but the

assi-

milation of

can no more be traced from year to year

than the growth of the body can be traced from day to


day.

We

shall begin, therefore,

by looking

at the several

I.

INTEODUCTOHY.

13

groups of facts of the age in which Christianity grew,

and endeavour, when we have looked their influence upon it.

at them, to estimate

We

shall look at the facts


:

which indicate the


it

state of

education

we
it

shall find that

was an age that was


all

penetrated with culture, and that necessarily gave to


ideas which

absorbed a cultured and, so to speak,

scholastic form.

We

shall look at the facts


:

which indicate the

state of

literature

we

shall find that it

was an age
its

of great lite-

rary activity, which was proud of

ancient monuments,

and which spent a large part of

its

industry in endea-

vouring to interpret and to imitate them.

We

shall look at the facts


:

which indicate the

state of

philosophy

we

shall find that it

was an age in which

metaphysical concej)tions had come to occupy relatively


the same place which the conceptions of natural science

occupy among ourselves; and that just as we tend to


look upon external things in their chemical and physical
relations, so there

was then,

as

it

were, a chemistry and

physics of ideas.

We

shall look at the facts


:

which indicate the


it

state of

moral ideas

we

shall find that

was an age

in

which
with

the ethical forces of

human

nature were

stru2:2;liu2:

an altogether unprecedented force against the degradation


of

contemporary society and contemporary religion, and

in

which the

ethical instincts

were creating the new


old

ideal of

"folloAving God,"

and were solving the


life

question whether there was or was not an art of


practising self-discipline.

by

Wc

shall look at the facts

which indicate the

state of

14
theological ideas
:

I.

INTRODTJCTOEY.
shall find that it

wc

was an age

in

which men were


vain,

feelinej after

God and

not feeling; in

and that from the domains

of ethics, physics,

meta-

physics alike, from the depths of the moral consciousness,

and from the cloud-lands

of poets' dreams, the ideas of

men were

trooping in one vast host to proclaim with a

united voice that there are not

many

gods, but only One,

one First Cause by Avhom

all

things were made, one


all

Moral Governor whose providence was over

His

works, one Supreme Being "of infinite power, wisdom,

and goodness."

We

shall look at the facts


:

which indicate the

state of

religion

we

shall find that it


for centuries

was an age

in

which the

beliefs that

had

been evolving themselves

from the old religions were showing themselves in new


forms of worship and

new
;

concei)tioiis

of

what God

needed in the worshipper

in

which

also the older ani-

malism was passing into mysticism, and mysticism was

the preparation of the soul for the spiritual religion of the time to come.

We

shall then, in the case of each great

group of

ideas,

endeavour to ascertain from the

earliest Christian docu-

ments the original Christian ideas upon which they acted;

and then compare the


Christian ideas
;

later

with the earlier form of those

and

finally

examine the combined result

of all the influences that

were at work upon the mental

attitude of the Christian world

and upon the basis

of

Christian association.

I should be glad

if

I could at once proceed to


of facts.

examine

some

of these groups

But

since the object

I.

mTRODUCTORY.
is

15
to lead

whicli I have in view

not so

much

you

to

any

conclusions of

my

own, as to invite you to walk with

me
to

in comparatively untrodden paths,

and

to

urge those of

you who have leisure for


able to do

historical

investigations

explore them for yourselves more fully than I have been

and since the main


my
purpose
if

difficulties of

the investi-

gation
of

lie less in

the facts themselves than in the attitude

mind

in

which they are approached

I feel that I

should

fail of

I did not linger still

upon
either
is

the threshold to say something of the "personal equation'' that

we must make

before

we can become
There

accurate observers or impartial judges.

the

more reason
history
is

for doing so, because the study of Christian

no doubt discredited by the dissonance in the

voices of its exponents.


state almost

An

ill-informed writer

may
state
his-

any propositions he pleases, with the certainty


;

of finding listeners

a well-informed writer

may

propositions which are as demonstrably true as


torical proposition

any

can be, with the certainty of being


is

contradicted.

There

no court of appeal, nor will there

be until more than one generation has been engaged

upon the task


1.

to

which I am inviting you.


necessary to take account of

In the

first place, it is

the

and the imagination of the student.


is

demand which the study makes upon the attention The scientific, that
is

the accurate, study of history


care

comparatively new.

The minute
which
is

which

is

required in the examination

of the evidence for the facts,

and the painful caution


requires not only

required in the forming of inferences, are but

inadequately appreciated.
attention,

The study

but also imagination.

student must have

16

I.

INTRODUCTORY.

somctliing aualogous to the power of a dramatist before

he can realize the scenery of a vanished age, or watch,


as in a

events.

moving panorama, the series and sequence of its He must have that power in a still greater

degree before he can so throw himself into a bygone

time as to be able to enter into the motives of the actors,

and

to

imagine how, having such and such a character,

and surrounded by such and such circumstances, he

would himself have thought and


the greatest

felt

and acted.

But
is

demand

that can be

made upon
is

either the

attention or the imagination of a student

that

which

made by such

a problem as the present, which requires

us to realize the attitude of mind, not of one man, but of


a generation of men, to
iloat

move with
mind
it is

their

movements,
to pass

to

upon the current


In the second

of their thoughts,

and

with

them from one


2.

attitude of
place,

into another.

necessary to take account

of our

own
it.

personal prepossessions.

Most

of us

come

to

the study of the subject already knowing something

about

It is a comparatively easy task for a lecturer

to present,
of,

and

for a hearer to realize,

an accurate picture
or of

for

example, the religion of Mexico

Peru,
the

because the mind of the student

when he begins
But most

study

is

a comparatively blank sheet.

of us

bring to the study of Christian history a


clusions already formed.

number

of con-

We

tend to beg the question

before

we examine
have before

it.

We
ideas

us,

on the one hand, the ideas and

usages of early Christianity;

on the other hand, the

and usages of imperial Greece.


to the

We bring

former the thoughts, the associations,

I.

INTRODUCTORY.

17

tlie

sacred memories, the liappy dreams,

which have been

rising

up round
if

us,

one by one, since our chiklhood.

among us who in the maturity of their years have broken away from their earlier moorings, They are not these associations still tend to remain.
Even
there be some

confined to those of us Avho not only consciously retain

them, but also hold their basis to be true.


unconsciously in the minds of those
lutely to

They

linger
reso-

who seem most

have abandoned them.


the latter, most of us, a similar wealth of
to us

We bring to
associations
tion.

which have come

through our educato deal are

The ideas with which we have

mostly

expressed in terms which are


turies of Christianity,

common

to the early cenliterature of five


tlieii

and to the Greek

centuries before.

The terms

are the same, but

meaning
Greek

is

different.

Those of us who have studied

literature tend to attach to


at

them the connotation


literature

which they had


its

Athens when Greek

was in

most perfect flower.

We

ignore the long interval of

time,

and the new connotation which, by an inevitable

law

of language,

had in the course of centuries clustered


of

round the old nucleus

meaning.

The terms have

in

some cases come down by direct transmission

into our

own

language.

They have

in such cases gathered to


until

themselves wholly
sciously hold

new meanings, which,

we

con-

them

up to the light, seem to us to form


and are with
difficulty

part of the original meaning,

disentangled.

We bring
made by

to

both the Christian and the Greek world

the inductions respecting


ourselves and

them which have been already


by
others.

We

have in those

18
inductions so

I.

INTRODUCTORY.

many

moulds, so to speak, into "which Tve

press the plastic statements of early writers.

We assume

the primitivencss of distinctions which for the most part


represent only the provisional conclusions of earlier generations of scholars,

and stages in our own

historical edu-

cation

and we arrange

facts in the categories

which we

find ready to hand, as Jewish or Gentile, orthodox or


heretical, Catholic or Gnostic, while the question of the

reality of such distinctions

and such categories

is

one of

the main points which our inquiries have to solve.


3.

In the third

place, it is necessary to take account

of the under- currents, not only of our OAvn age, but of

the past ages with which

we have

to deal.

Every age

has such under-current s, and every age tends to be unconscious of them.

We

ourselves have succeeded to a

splendid heritage.
beliefs, the habits of

Behind us are the thoughts, the


mind, which have been in process

of formation since the first beginning of our race.

They

are inwrought, for the


nature. of of

most

part, into the texture of our

of

To them the mass our thoughts are relative, and by them the thoughts other generations tend to be judged. The importance recognizing them as an element in our judgments of
cannot transcend them.

We

other generations increases in proportion as those generations recede from our own.

In dealing with a country

or a period not very remote,

we may

not go far wi'ong in


is

assuming that

its

inheritance of ideas

cognate to our

own. liut in dealing with a remote country, or a remote


period of time,
it

becomes of extreme importance to allow

for the difference, so to speak, of mental longitude.

The

men

of earlier

days had other mental scenery round them.

I.

INTRODUCTORY.

19

Fewer streams
Consequently,
kvith

of

thought had converged upon them.


ideas

many

which were in

entire

harmony

the mental fabric of their time, are unintelligible


to the standard of our

^hen referred
)ut the

own

nor can

we

inderstand them until

we have been

at the pains to find

underlying ideas to which they were actually

'dative.

I will briefly illustrate this point


[a)

by two
to

instances

"We tend

to take

with

us, as

we

travel into

bygone
is

:imes, the dualistic hypothesis

lypothesis, but

an axiomatic truth

which

most of us

no

of the existence of
soul,

m unbridged
jpirit.
;o

chasm between body and


minds

matter and

The

relation in our

of the idea of matter

the idea of spirit is such, that

though we readily conspirit,

ceive
iVe

matter to act upon matter, and spirit upon


it

find

difficult

or impossible to conceive a direct

iction

either of matter

upon

spirit

or of spirit

upon

natter.

When,

therefore, in studying, for example, the

mcient
:o

rites of baptism,

we

find expressions

which seem

attribute a virtue to the material element,

we measure
them
belong,

5uch expressions
IS

by a modern

standard, and regard

containing only an analogy or a symbol.


to another phase of

They

^n reality,

thought than our own.

riiey are an outflow of the earlier conception of matter

md
^

spirit

as

varying forms of a single substance.^ common view


;

Tins was the

of the Stoics,

probably following
4.

^Vnaxagoras or his school


^Diels,

of.

Plutarch [Aetius], de Plac. Philos,


387).
It

BoxograpM
(TVfj.TrdcT'x^eL

Grcbci, p.

was stated by Chrysippus,


crviyfia

jv8ev acrco/xaTov
Tw/xaTt'

crvfnrd(T')(^i

crcofiaTt

ov8e d(T(ofidT(^
(TWjJiarL

dXXa
apa
ij

aoifxa
^v)(r}

Se
aj}.

>)

^v^r]

tw

....

crwpia
;

(Chrysipp. Fragm.

Nemes. de Nat. Horn. 33)

by Zeno, in

Cic.

c2

20
*'

I.

INTRODUCTORY.

Whatever

acts,

is

body,"

it

subtlest form of body, but

it is

was said. Mind is the body nevertheless. The


for instance^

conception of a direct action of the one upon the other

presented no difficulty.
that

It

was imagined,
direct causes

demons might be the


to
enter,

of diseases,

because the extreme tenuity of their substance enabled

them
all

and

to exercise a malignant influence

upon, the bodies of men.

So water,

when

exorcized from
it,

the evil influences which might reside in

actually

cleansed the soul.^

The conception
It

of the process as

symbolical came with the growth of later ideas of the


relation of matter to spirit.
is,

so to speak, a ration-

alizing explanation of a conception

which the world was

tending to outgrow.
Academ.
1. 1.

11. 39;

Ly

their followers, Plutarch [Aetius],

(r?e

P^ac. P77o^.

11. 4 (Dials, p. 310), 06 ^toukoX iravTa to. acVta crtDjiaTtKa.' Trrei'/xara

yap;

SO

by Seneca,

Ejyist.

117.

2,

"quicquicl facit corpus est;" so

among some
^

Christian writers,

e.g. Tertullian,

de Anima,

5.

The conception
:

underlies the whole of Tertullian's treatise, de


rites

tismo

it

accounts for the

of exorcism

Bapand benediction of both

and the water which are foiind in the older Latin service-books, what is known as the Gelasian Sacramentary, i. 73 (in Muratori^ Liturgia Romana veins, vol. i. p. 594), " exaudi nos omnipotens Deus
the
oil
e.g.

in

et
et

171

hujus aquce suhstantiam immitte virtutem ut abluendus per earn

sanitatem simul et vitam mereatur a?ternam." This prayer is immediately followed by an address to the water, " exorcizo te creatura aqua3
per

Deum vivum

adjuro te per
cfficiaris

Jesum Christum

filium ejus

unicum

dominum nostrum
Spiritui Sancto
.

ut

in eo qui in te baptizandus erit fons

aqua3 salientis in vitam retcrnam, regenerans


.

eum Deo

Patri et Filio et

So in the Galilean Sacramentary published by ]\Iabillon {de Liturgia GaUlcana lihri ires, p. 362), " exorcizo te fons aqua) perennis per Deum sanctum et Deum verum qui te in principio
."

ab arida separavit

et in

quatuor lluminibus terram rigore prrccepit


ahlueiis sordcs ct dlmitttns jpeccata,
.

aqua sancta, aqua benedicta,

sis ."

I.

INTRODUCTOEY.

21

(5)

We

take with us in our travels into the past the

underlying conception of religion as a personal bond

between God and the individual


that there
is

soul.

We

cannot believe

any virtue in an

act of worship in

which

the conscience has no place.

We

can understand, how-

ever

much we may

deplore, such persecutions as those of

the sixteenth century, because they ultimately rest upon

men were so profoundly convinced own personal beliefs as to deem it of supreme importance that other men should hold those beliefs also. But we find it difficult to understand why, in the second century of our era, a great emperor who
the same conception
:

of the truth of their

was

also a great philosopher should

have deliberately per-

secuted Christianity.

The

difficulty arises

from our over-

looking the entirely different aspect under which religion


presented itself to a
lay, not

Eoman mind.

It

was a matter which


indiit.

between the soul and God, but between the


ancestral usage
It

vidual and the State.

Conscience had no place in

Worship was an
of
^

which the State sancof the ordinary duties

tioned and enforced.


life.^

was one
it,

The neglect

of

and

still

more the disavowal

These conceptions are found in Xenophon's account of Socrates,


v6{j.o)

wlio quotes more than once the Delphic oracle, ^ re yap Ili^^ta
TToAews dvaipet TroLovvra'; eucre/^ws av
Trotetv,

Xen, Mem.

1. 3. 1,

and

again

4. 3.

16

in Epictet, Encli. 31, o-TrevSetv Se Koi Oveuv Kal aTrdp:

y^iddai Kara to. Trdrpia eKayrots Trpoa-^Kei repeatedly in Plutarch, e.g. de Defect. Orac. 12, p. 416, de Comm. Notit. 31. 1, p. 1074 in the Atireum Carmen of the later Pythagoreans, dOavaTovs jxlv Trpwra deohs
:

v6{i(a

ws 8idKivTai,

TLfj.a

(Frag. Pliilos. Grcbc.

i.

p.

193)

and in the
yap

IN'eoplatonist

Porphyry {ad Marcell.

18, p. 286, ed. Nauclc), outos

/AeytcTTos KapiTo'i vcre/3etas rtfiav to Oelov

Kara

to, Trdrpia. its

The
5,

intel-

lectual opponents of Christianity laid stress

upon

desertion of the

ancestral religion; e.g. Ccecilius in Minucius Felix,

Odav.

"quanto

22
of
it,

I.

INTRODIJCTOIIY.

was a crime.
to

An

emperor might pity the offender

for his obstinacy, but he

must necessarily

either compel

him

obey or punish him

for disobedience.

It is not until

we have

thus realized the fact that the

study of history requires as diligent and as constant an


exercise of the mental powers as
sciences,

any

of the physical

and until we have made what may be called the


the theories which

''personal equation," disentangling ourselves as far as

we can from
of

we have

inherited or

formed, and recognizing the existence of under-currents

thought in past ages widely different from those which

flow in our own, that

we

shall

be likely to investigate
I

with success the great problem that lies before us.


lay stress

upon these

points, because the interest of the


its

subject tends to obscure


full of

difficulties.

Literature

is

fancy sketches of early Christianity;

they are

written, for the most part,

by

enthusiasts

whose imagi-

nation soars

by an easy

flight to the

mountain-tops which

the historian can only reach by a long and rugged road

they are read, for the most part, by those

who

give them

only the attention which they would give to a shilling

hand-book or

to

an

article in a review.

have no

desire,

and

am

sure that

you have no

desire, to

add one more


for a precise

to such fancy sketches.

The time has come

study.

The materials for such a study are available. The method of such a study is determined by canons which have been established in analogous fields of reThe difficulties of such a study come almost search.
venerabilius ac melius .... iiiajorum cxcipere disciplinam, religiones
traditas colore ;"

aud Celsus

iu Origeii,

c.

Ccls. 5. 25,

35

8.

57.

I.

INTEODUCTORY.
it

23

entirely

from ourselves, and

is

a duty to begin

by

recognizing them.

Eor the study


also of

is

one not only of living interest, but

supreme importance.

Other history

or less antiquarian.
gratify our curiosity

Its ultimate result

may be more may be only to


stores of our

and

to

add

to the

knowledge.
guide of our

But
lives.

Christianity claims to be a present'!


It has

been so large a factor in the

moral development of our race, that


its

claim unheard.

JN'either
is.

we cannot can we admit it


speak in
its

set aside

until

we
The

know what
are each of

Christianity

A thousand
to

dissonant voices

them professing
from them to
its

name.
its

appeal

lies

documents and to

history.

In order

to

know what

it is,

we must
it

first

know both
The study
it is

what

it

professed to be and

what

has been.
;

of the one is the

complement

of the other

but

with

the latter only that

we have

at present to do.

We

may

enter upon the study with confidence, because


tific

it is

a scien-

inquiry.

We may hear,
It is

if

we

will, the

solemn tramp

of the science of history

marching slowly, but marching


marching in our day, almost

always to conquest.

for the first time, into the

domain

of Christian history. of

Upon

its

flanks,

as

upon the

flanks

the

physical

sciences, there are scouts

and skirmishers, who venture


is

sometimes into morasses where there


into ravines

no foothold, and
issue.

from which there


on.

is

no

But the

science

is

marching

"Yestigia nulla retrorsum."

It marches, as the physical sciences

have marched, with

the firm tread of certainty.

It meets, as the physical

sciences have met, with opposition,

and even with con-

tumely.

In front

of

it,

as in front of the physical

24
sciences, is chaos
;

I.

INTEODUCTOr.Y.
it is

beliind

order.

"We mny marcbi

in its progress, not only -with the confidence of scientific


certainty, but also with the confidence of Christian faith.
It to Ave

may

shoAV

some things
;

to

be derived which
to

wc thought

be original
thought
to

and some things

be compound which
;

be incapable of analysis

and some things


realities.

to
it

be phantoms which
will

we thought

to

be

Eut
;

add a new chapter

to Christian apologetics

it

Avill

confirm the divinity of Christianity


all else

by showing

it

to

be in harmony with
its results

that

will take their place

we believe to be divine among those truths which


a fire that cannot be

burn in the souls of men


with a light that

w^ith

quenched, and light up the darkness of this stormy sea


is

never dim.

Lecture

II.

GEEEK EDUCATIOIT.

The

general result of the considerations to wliich I


is,

have already invited your attention

that a study of

the growth and modifications of the early forms of Christianity

must begin with a study


it

of their environment. to

For a complete study,

would be necessary

examine
all life

that environment as a whole.

In some respects
it is

hangs together, and no single element of


isolation.

in absolute
of

The

political

and economical features


its literary

given time affect more or less remotely

and and

philosophical features, and a complete investigation would

take them

all into

account.

But

since life is short,

human powers many other studies,

are limited, it is necessary in this, as in


to

be content with something


It will

less

than ideal completeness.

be found

sufficient in

practice to deal only with the proximate causes of the

phenomena
shall

into
do,

which we inquire
with literary

and in dealing,

as

we

mainly

effects, to deal also

mainly
also.

with those features of the age which were literary

The most general summary of those features is, that the Greek world of the second and third centuries was,
in a sense which,

though not without some just demur,


It

has tended to prevail ever since, an educated world.

26

II.

GREEK EDUCATION.

was reaping the harvest which many generations had


sown.
Fi^ e centuries before, the

new elements
Greek
to
till

of

knowIt

ledge and cultured speech had begun to enter largely


into the simpler elements of early
life.

had

become no longer enough


to

for

men

the ground, or

pursue their several handicrafts, or to be practised in

the use of arms.

The word
could

a-ocpo?,

which in
skilled in

earlier

times had been applied to one


the arts of
life,

who

who was string a bow

any of

or tune a lyre or
if

even trim a hedge, had come to be applied,


sively, yet at least chiefly, to

not exclu-

one who was shrewd with

practical

wisdom, or who knew the thoughts and sayings

of the ancients. in the Greek

The

original reasons,

which lay deep


knowledge
be

character, for the element of

assuming

this special form,

had been accentuated by the


There seems
to

circumstances of later Greek history.


little

reason in the nature of things

why

Greece should

not have anticipated modern Europe in the study of


nature,
chief

and why knowledge should not have had


in earlier times that

for its

meaning

which

it is

tending to
of

mean

now, the knowledge of the

phenomena and laws


to collect

the physical world.

The tendency

and

colligate
less

and compare the

facts of nature appears to

be no

instinctive than the tendency to

become acquainted with


before us.
13ut

the thoughts of those

who have gone

Greece on the one hand had

lost political

power, and on

the other hand possessed in her splendid literature an


inalienable heritage. She could acquiesce with the greater

equanimity in
of letters she

political subjection,

because in the domain

was

still

supreme with an indisputable


tui*n to letters.

supremacy. It was natural that she should

II.

GREEK EDUCATION.

27
bo

It

was natural

also that the study of letters should

reflected

upon speech. For the lore


of talkers.

of speech

had become

to a large proportion of

Greeks a second nature.

They

They were almost the slaves of cultivated expression. Though the public life out of which orators had grown had passed away with political
were a nation
freedom,
it

had

left

behind

it

a habit which in the second

century of our era was blossoming into a

Like children playing at

new spring. "make-believe," when real

speeches in real assemblies became impossible, the Greeks

revived the old practice of public speaking by addressing


fictitious assemblies

and arguing

in fictitious courts.

In

the absence of the distractions of either keen


struggles at

political

home

or wars abroad, these tendencies

had

spread themselves over the large surface of general Greek


society.

A
of

kind of literary instinct had come to

exist.

The mass
rations,

men

in the

Greek world tended


of

to lay stress

on that acquaintance with the literature

bygone gene-

and that habit

of cultivated speech,

which has

ever since been

commonly spoken
it

of as education.

Two
to the

points have to be considered in regard to that

education before

can be regarded as a cause in relation


Ave are

main subject which


at its forms,
it

examining: we must
at its mass. It is

look

first

and secondly

not enough that


certain
in
eff'ects
;

should have corresponded in kind to


to

it

must be shown

have been adequate

amount
I.

to account for them.

The education was almost


field.

as

complex as our own.


it

If

we

except only the inductive physical sciences,


It was, indeed, not so
it.

covered the same


analogous to our

much

own

as the cause of

Our own comes

28

II.

GREEK EDrCATION.
it.

by

direct tradition

from

It set a fashion

which until

recently has uniformly prevailed over the whole civilized

world.

We

study literature rather than nature because


so,

the Greeks did


the

and because when the Eomans and

Eoman

provincials resolved, to educate their sons,

they employed Greek teachers and followed in Greek


paths.

The two main elements were those which have been


already indicated, Gra;mmar and Rhetoric.^
1.

By Grammar was meant

the study of literature.^

In
it
^'

its

original sense of the art of reading


art begins

and writing,
ourselves.

began as early as that

among

We

are given over to

Grammar," says Sextus Empiriit

cus,^ " from childhood, and almost from our baby-clothes."

But

this

elementary part of

was usually designated by


itself

another name,^ and


^

Grammar

had come

to include
the

The following
:

is

designed to be a short account, not of


its

all

elements of later Greek education, but only of

more prominent and

important features

nothing has been said of those elements of the

eyKwAios waiSeta which constituted the mediaeval quadrivium. The "works bearing on the subject will be found enumerated in K. F. Hermann, Lehrliuch der griechischen Antiquitliten, Bd. iv. p. 302, 3te aufl, ed. Blumner the most important of them is Grasberger, Erzichung und UnterricM im dassischen AUertlaim, Ed. i. and ii. Wlirzburg, 18G4: the shortest and most useful for an ordinary reader is Ussing, Erzielmng und Jugendunterricht bet den Griechen und liomeni, Berlin, 1885.
:

Littcratura

is

the Latin for ypafifiaTiK-q


1.

Quintil. 2. 1. 4.

Adv. Gramm.

44.

which was taught by the ypaufxaTia-Ttjs, Avheroas ypafxnaTLKT] was taught by the ypa/ximriKo^. The relation between the two arts is indicated by the fact that in the Edict of Diocletian the fee
* ypafifxaTLo-TLKy,

of the former

is
:

limited to fifty denarii, while that of the latter rises to


Edict. Diodet. ap. Haencl, Corj^us Lcgtim, No. 1054,

two hundred
p.

178.

II.

GREEK EDUCATION.

29

all

that in later times has been designated Belles Lettres.


it

This comprehensive view of


sequently, the art
division
is

was

of slow

growth

con-

variously defined and divided.

The

which Sextus Empiricus^ speaks of as most free


sufficiently indicate the

from objection, and which will


general limits of the subject,
historical,

is

into the technical, the


first of

and the exegetical elements. The


of diction, the laying

these

was the study


barisms.

down
was

of canons of

correctness, the distinction

between Hellenisms and Barstress

Upon

this as

much

laid as

was

laid

upon academic French


to

in the age of Boileau.

"I owe
of not

Alexander," says Marcus Aurelius,^

"my habit

finding fault, and of not using abusive language to those

who

utter a barbarous or

awkward

or unmusical plu'ase."

" I must apologize for the style of this letter," says the
Christian Father Basil two centuries afterwards, in writing
to his old teacher Libanius
;

" the truth


Elias,
is

is,

have been in
of that kind,,

the

company
tell

of

Moses and

and men

who

us no doubt what

true,

but in a barbarous

dialect, so that

your instructions have quite gone out of


of
:

my

head."^

The second element

Grammar was

the

study of the antiquities of an author

the exj)lanation of

the names of the gods and heroes, the legends and histories,

which were mentioned.

It is continued to this

day in most notes upon


^

classical authors.
250.

The
liave

third

Adv. Gramm.
"With

1.

91 sqq.,

cf. ih.

This

is

quoted as being most mainly to

representative of the period with


do.
it

which these Lectures

may be compared

the elaborate account given by Quin-

tilian, 1.
2 3

4 sqq.

1. 10.

The substance
is

There

of Basil's letter, Ep. 339 (146), tom. iii. p. 455. a charming irony in Libanius's answer, Ep. 340 (147), iUd.

30

II.

GREEK EDUCATION.
critical,

element was partly

the distinguishing between

true and spurious treatises, or between true and false

readings

but chiefly exegetical, the explanation of an


It is

author's meaning.

spoken of as the prophetess of

the poets, ^ standing to them in the same relation as the

Delphian priestess

to

her inspiring god.

The main subject-matter of this literary education was They were read, not only for their literary, the poets. but also for their moral value.^ They were read as we read the Bible. They were committed to memory. The
minds

men were saturated with them. A quotation from Homer or from a tragic poet was apposite on all
of

occasions and in every kind of society.


in an account of his travels, tells

Dio Chrysostom,
to the

how he came

Greek colony
of the empire,

of the Borysthenitce,

on the farthest borders


settle-

and found that even in those remote


the inhabitants

ments almost

all

knew

the Iliad

by

heart,
else.^

and that they did not care


2.

to hear

about anything
Bhetoric

Grammar was succeeded by

the

study

forensic argument.

by the study of literary expression and quasiThe two were not sharply distinguished in practice, and had some elements in common. The conception of the one no less than of the other had widened with time, and Ehctoric, like Grammar, was
of literature

variously defined and divided.


precept, partly

It

was taught partly by


practice.

by example, and partly by


and gave
1.

The

professor either dictated rules


^ 2
Trpo(jirJTi<s,

lists of

selected

Sext.

Emp.

adv.

Gramm.

279.
^I'j'^ovOev ^iAt}?

Strabo,

1. 2. 3,

ov xpvxaydyyias x^P'"

dXXa

o-ox^-

povicr/xoi;.
3

Dio Chrys, Orat. xxxvi.

vol.

ii.

p.

51, ed. Diml.

II.

GREEK EDUCATION.

31

passages of ancient authors, or he read such passages

with comments upon the


speeches of his own.
literary

style,
first

or he delivered of these

model
its

The

methods has

monument

in the hand-books

which remain.^ The


has

second survives as an institution in modern times, and

on a large

scale, in

the University "lecture," and

it

monuments in the Scholia upon Homer and other great writers. The third method gave birth to an institution which also survives in modern Each of these methods was followed by the stutimes. dent. He began by committing to memory both the
also left important literary

professor's

rules

and

also

selected

passages

of

good
In

authors
tions

the latter he recited, with appropriate modula-

and gestures, in the presence of the professor.

the next stage, he


is

made
fii'st

his
is

a short example which

comments upon them. Here embedded in Epictetus ^ the


:

student reads the


hilia^
*

sentence of Xenophon's Memorait

and makes his criticism upon

" I have often wondered what in the world were the grounds

on which Eather
, .
.

.'
. . .

'

the ground on which

.*

It is neater."

From

this,

or concurrently with this, the student pro-

ceeded to compositions of his own.


imitation of style,
^

Beginning with mere


to invent the
:

he was gradually led

These are printed in Walz, Rhetores Grceci, vol. i. the account is mainly that of the Progi/mnasmafa of Theo of Smyrna (circ. A.D. 130). There is a letter of Dio Chrysostom, printed among
here followed
his speeches,

Orat

xvii.

irepl

Xoyov

d(TK7]creM<s,

ed.

Dind.

i.

279, con-

sisting of advice to a
late in life,

man who was

beginning the study of Rhetoric


treatise, gives as

which, without being a formal

good a view

as could be
2

found of the general course of

training.

Diss. 3. 23. 20.

32

II.

GREEK EDUCATION.

structure as well as the style of

what he wrote, and

to

vary both the style and the subject-matter. Sometimes he

had the use

of the professor's library;^

and though writwords


if

ing in his native language, he had to construct his periods


according to rules of
art,

and to avoid

all

for whicli

an authority could not be quoted, just as

he were an

English undergraduate writing his Greek prose.

The

crown

of all

was the

acquisition of the art of speaking

extempore.

A student's education in Rhetoric was finished


the power to talk off-hand on any subject

when he had

that might be proposed.

Lut whether he

recited a pre-

pared speech or spoke off-hand, he was expected to show


tlie

same

artificiality of structure

and the same pedantry


boundless length

of diction.

"

You must
who
is

strip off all that

of sentences that is

wrapped round you," says Charon to


just stepping into his boat, ''and

the rlietorician

those antitheses of yours, and balancings of clauses, and

strange expressions, and

all

the other heavy weights of


too heavy)."

speech (or you will

make my boat

To
phy.

a considerable extent there prevailed, in addition

to Belles Lett res


It

and Ehetoric, a teaching

of Philoso-

was the highest element


was common

in the education of

the average Greek of the period.


of Dialectic,

Logic, in the form

to Pliilosophy

and Rhetoric.
learnt,

Every one

learnt to argue: a large

number

in

addition, the technical terms of Philosophy


lines of its history.

and the out-

Lucian^

tells

a tale of a country

gentleman of the old school, whose nephew went home

from lecture night


1

after niglit,

and regaled

his

mother

Philostr.

V.S.

2.

21. 3, of Pioclns.
3

Lucian, Dial Mart. 10. 10.

jf,,rmaiiin. SI.

II.

GREEK EDUCATION.

33

and himself with


tations,"

and dilemmas, talking about *' relations" and "comprehensions" and " mental presenfallacies

and jargon
" that

of that sort; nay, worse than that,

saying,

God

does not live in heaven, but goes

about among stocks and stones and such-like."


as Logic

As

far

was concerned,

it

was almost natural

to a

Greek

mind

Dialectic

was but the conversation

of a sharp-

witted people conducted under recognized rules.


it

But
it

was a comparatively
It

new phase
It
to

of Philosophy that

should have a literary


degeneracy.
It

side.

had come

had shared in the common take wisdom at second-hand.

was not the evolution of a man's own thoughts, but


of others.
to a

an acquaintance with the recorded thoughts


It

was divorced from

practice.

It

was degraded
It

system of lectures and disputations.


the same general

was taught in
it.

way

as the studies

which preceded
place.

But

lectures

had a more important

Sometimes

the professor read a passage from a philosopher, and gave


his interpretation of of his own.
it
;

sometimes he gave a discourse

Sometimes a student read an essay of his

own, or interpreted a passage of a philosopher, in the


presence of the professor, and the professor afterwards

pronounced his opinion upon the correctness of the reasoning or the interpretation.! The Discourses of Epictetus

have a singular interest in this respect, apart from their


contents; for they are in great measure notes of such

There

is

a good example

of the former of these

methods iu
and of the

Maximus

of Tyre, Dissert. 33, where 1 is part of a student's essay,


sections are the professor's

and the following


legcre^

comments
is

latter in Epictetus, Diss. 1. 10. 8,

where the student

said

dvayvwu,

the professor CTavayvwi/ai, pnclegere.

34
lectures,

II.

GREEK EDUCATION.
it

and form, as

were, a photograph of a philo-

sopher's lecture-room.

Against this degradation of Philosophy, not only the


Cynics, but almost
tested.
all

the more serious philosophers proprofessor,

Though Epictetus himself was a

and

though he followed the current usages of professorial teaching, his life and teaching alike were in rebellion
against
it.

"If

I study Philosophy," he says,

"with a

view only

to its literature, I

am

not a philosopher, but


is,

a litterateur ;

the only difference

that I interpret
pro-

Chrysippus instead of Homer." ^

They sometimes

tested not only against the degradation of Philosophy,

but also against the whole conception of literary educa"There are two kinds of education," says Dio tion.
Chrysostom,^ " the one divine, the other
divine
is

great and powerful and easy;

the

human the human is


;

mean and weak, and has many dangers and no small The mass of people call it education deceitfulness. being, I suppose, an amusement (-rraiSlav^j (iraiSeiav), as and think that a man who knows most literature
Persian

and Greek

and Syrian
find

and Phoenician
;

is

the wisest and best-educated


other hand,

when they

man and then, on the a man of this sort to be man


himself.

vicious and cowardly and fond of money, they think the

education to be as worthless as the


other kind they
call

The

sometimes education, and sometimes


It

manliness and high-mindedness.

men

of old

used

to call those

who had
souls,

was thus that the this good kind


and educated as

of education
1

men
:

with manly

Enchir. 49

see also Dins. 3. 21, quoted below, p. 102.


i.

* Orat. iv. vol.

p. 69, ed.

Dind.

II.

GREEK EDUCATIOX.
of

35

Herakles was

sons

God."

And

not less significant


this kind

as an indication not only of the reaction against

of edncation but also of


of
it

its

prevalence,
it

is

the deprecation

by Marcus Aurelius: "I owe

to Eusticus,"

he

says,^ " that I formed the idea of the need of moral refor-

mation, and that I was not diverted to literary ambition,


or to write treatises on philosophical subjects, or to
rhetorical exhortations

make

.... and that I kept away from


of speech." to its extent.
it

rhetoric

and poetry and foppery


diffusion of
of

II. I pass

from the forms of education


it,

The general
evidence.
1.

and the hold which

had

upon the mass

men, are shown by many kinds of

They

are

shown by the large amount

of literary

modes of obtaining eduThe exclusiveness of the old aristocracy had broken down. Education was no longer in the hands of
evidence as to scholars and the
cation.
''

private tutors" in the houses of the great families.


life,

It

entered public
it.

and in doing

so left a record

behind

It

may be

inferred from the extant evidence that

there were grammar-schools in almost every town.


these
all

At

youths received the

first

part of their education.

But it became a common practice for youths to supplement this by attending the lectures of an eminent professor elsewhere.

school to a University.^
1
-

They went, as we might say, from The students who so went away

17.

This higher education was not confined to Kome or Athens, but was found in many parts of the empire Marseilles in the time of Strabo was even more frequented than Athens. There were other great schools at Antioch and Alexandria, at Ehodes and Smyrna, at Ephesus and Byzantium, at I^aples and Nicopolis, at Bordeaux and
:

d2

36

II.

GREEK EDUCATION.
all classes of tlie

from home were drawn from

community.
"bettel-

Some
to

of tliem

were very poor, and,

like the

Btudenten" of the medieeval Universities, had sometimes

beg their bread.^

"You
to-day,

are a miserable race," says

Epictetus^ to some students of this kind; ''when you

have eaten your

fill

you

sit

down whining about

to-morrow, where to-morrow's dinner will come from."

Some of them went because it was the fashion. The young sybarites of Eome or Athens complained bitterly
that at T^icopolis, where they had gone to listen to Epictetus,

lodgings were bad, and the baths were bad, and


bad, and "society" hardly existed.^

the

gymnasium was

Then, as now, there were home-sick students, and mothers

weeping over their absence, and

letters that

were

looked for but never came, and letters that brought bad

news

and young men of promise who were expected

to

return

doubts
tion

home as living encyclopaedias, but who only raised when they did return home whether their educaas

had done them any good.^ Then,


The

now, they went


In the
it

Autun.

practice of resorting to such schools lasted long.

fourth century and

among

the Christian Fathers, Basil and Gregory


:

Nazianzen, Augustine and Jerome, are recorded to have followed


rent educational system
"

the general recognition of Christianity did not seriously affect the cur:

Through the whole world," says Augustine


viii.

(de idilitate credendi, 7, vol.

76, ed. Migne), " the schools of the

rhetoricians are alive with the din of crowds of students."


^

There

is

an interesting instance,

at a rather later time, of the

poverty of two students, one of Avliom afterwards became famous,


Prohairesius and Ilephajstion
:

they had only one ragged

gown between

them, so that while one went to lecture, the other had to stay at home
iu

bed (Eunap. Pruhcbrcs.


2

p. 78).
3

Diss.

1.

9.

1.'.

Ih. 2. 21.

12;

3. 24. 54.

lb. 2. 21.

12, 13,

15;

3.

24. 22, 24.

II.

GEEEK EDUCATION.

37

from the lecture-room

to athletic sports or the theatre

"and

the consequence is," says Epictetus,^ "that you

don't get out of your old habits or

make moral
show
off.

progress."

Then, as now, some students went, not for the sake of


learning, but in order to be able to

Epictetus

draws a picture of one who


next

looked forward to airing his

logic at a city dinner, astonishing the


to

"alderman" who

sat

him with the

puzzles of hypothetical syllogisms.^

And

then, as now, those

who had

followed the fashion

by attending lectures showed by their manner that they were there against their will. " You should sit upright,"
says Plutarch,^ in his advice to hearers in general, "not
lolling, or

whispering, or smiling, or yawning as

if

you

were
of

asleep, or fixing

your eyes on the ground instead


also speak-

on the speaker."

In a similar way Philo,^

ing of hearers in general, says:

"Many

persons

who

come

to a lecture

do not bring their minds inside with

them, but go wandering about outside, thinking ten

thousand things about ten thousand different subjects


family
affairs,

other people's
talks to

affairs,

private affairs, ....


it

and the professor

an audience, as

were, not of

men but
2.

of statues,

which have

ears but hear not."

second indication of the hold which education


is

had upon the age


not so
1

the fact that teaching had come to

be a recognized and lucrative profession.

This

is

shown

much by
3.

the instances of individual teachers,^


15.
ii.

who

n.

16.

U,

2 77,, 1.

00

9,

2 *

De

audiendo, 13, vol.

p. 45.
i.

The passage

is

abridged above.

Quis

rer. div. lieres. 3, vol.

p. 474.

ssays,"

For example, Verrius Flaccus, the father of the system of " prize who received an annual salary of 100,000 sesterces from

38

II.

GREEK EDUCATION.

might be regarded as exceptional, as by the fact of the recognition of teachers by the State and by municipalities.

The recognition by the State took the double form of endowment and of immunities from public burdens. (a) Endowments probably began with Vespasian, who
endowed teachers
of Ehetoric at

Home with an

annual

grant of 100,000 sesterces from the imperial treasury.


Iladrian founded an Athenaeum or University at
like the

Eome,
an

Museum

or University at Alexandria, with

adequate income, and with a building of sufficient importance to be sometimes used as a Senate-house.
also

He
per-

gave large sums to the professors at Athens


:

in this

he was followed by Antoninus Pius

but the

first

manent endowment

at

Athens seems

to

have been that of

Marcus Aurelius, who founded two chairs in each of the


four great philosophical schools of Athens, the Academic,

the Peripatetic, the Epicurean, and the Stoic, and added

one of the

new

or literary Ehetoric,

and one of the old

or forensic Ehetoric.^

The inscriptions of Asia Augustus (Suet, de illusfr. Gramm. 17). Minor furnish several instances of teachers who had left their homes to teach in other provinces of the Empire, and had returned rich
enough
^

to

make

presents to their native

cities.

The evidence

for the above paragraph,

additional facts rehitive to the

same

subject,

with ample accounts of but unnecessary for the

present purpose, will be found in F. H. L. Ahrens, de

statu politico et literario inde ah Achaici foederis intentu usque


;

Antuninorum femjiora, Gottingen, 1829 K. 0. Mliller, resimhlica apud Grxcos et Roinanos Uteris dodrinisque colendis et promovetidis impenderit, Gottingen (Programm zur Siicularfcier), 1837;
P. Seidel,

Athcnarum ad Quam curam

de scliolarum quoi florente

Romanonnn

imperio Athenis

exstiferunt conditione, Glogau,

1838

C. G. Zumpt, Ueber den Bestand

der philosoijlLischcn Schiden in Athen tind die Succession der Scholarcken, Berlin (Ahhandl. der Akadeniie der Wisseuschaften),

1843; L.

II.

GREEK EDUCATION.
of the teaching classes

S9

(h)

The immunities

began with

Julius Csesar, and appear to have been so

amply recogand limited

nized in the early empire that Antoninus Pius placed

them upon a footing which


them.

at once established
cities

He

enacted that small

might place upon

the free

list five

physicians, thi-ee teachers of rhetoric,


;

and three of

literature

that assize towns might so place

seven physicians, three teachers of rhetoric, and three of


literature;

and that metropolitan

cities

might

so place
lite-

ten physicians, five teachers of rhetoric, and five of


rature
;

but that these numbers should not be exceeded.


of indirect

These immunities were a form

endowment.^
all

They exempted

those

whom

they affected from


literaria Atlieniensium,

the

Weber, Commentatio de academia


1858.

Marburg,

an interesting Roman inscription of the end of the Avhich almost seems to show that the endowments century a.d. second were sometimes diverted for the benefit of others besides philosophers it is to an athlete, who was at once " canon of Serapis," and entitled to
There
is
:

free

commons

at the

museum, vewKopov tov /xya[Aou


\p-LTov\[xkv(iiv

2apa7rtS]os koI

Tcov ^v TO? Movcretto

dreAwv

(juXoa-ocfiOiv,

Corpus Inscr.

Grcec. 59 i 4.
^

The

edict of
:

Antoninus Pius

is

contained in L.
is

cusat. 27. 1

the

number

of philosophers
:"

6, 2, D. de exnot prescribed, " quia rari

sunt qui philosophantur

"iude iam manifesti


immunities
is

fient

described,

and if they make stipulations about pay, non philosophantes." The nature of the "a ludorum publicorum regimine, ibid. 8
:

ab

eedilitate,

a sacerdotio, a receptione militum, ab emtione frumenti,

olei, et

nolentes neque ad alium famulatum cogi."

neque judicare neque legates esse neque in militia numerari The immunities were somee.g.

times further extended to the lower classes of teachers,


magistri at Vipascum in Portugal
EpJiemeris EjngrajMca, vol.
iii.
:

the

liidi

cf.

Hiibner and jNIommsen in the

For the regulations of de studiis Uhercdlhus urhis Romce et Constantirtopolitanai ; and for a good popular account of the whole subject, see G. Boissier, L' instruction xniblique dans V empire
pp. 185, 18S,
9,

the later empire, see Cod. Theodos. 14.

Romain^

in the

Revue des Deux Mondcs, mars

15, 1884.

40

II.

GnEEK EDUCATION.

burdens which tendod in the later empire to impoverish


the middle and upper classes.

They were consequently

equivalent to the gift from the municipality of a considerable annual income.


3.

third indication of the hold of education


is

upon

contemporary society

the place which

its

professors

held in social intercourse.


nized class
;

They were not only a


life.

recog-

they also mingled largely, by virtue of their


If a dinner of

profession, with ordinary

any pre-

tensions were given, the professor of Belles Lettres

must

be there to recite and expound passages of poetry, the


jDrofessor of Ehetoric to

speak upon any theme which

might be proposed

to him,

and the professor

of Philoso-

phy
was

to read a discourse

upon morals.

"sermonette"

from one of these professional philosophers after dinner


as

much
is

in fashion as a piece of vocal or instrumental


us.^

music

with

All three kinds of professors were

sometimes part of the permanent retinue of a great household.

But the philosophers were even more in fashion than theii' brother professors. They were petted by great ladies. They became " domestic chaplains." ^ They were
^

Lucian's Convivium

is

humorous and
17.

satirical

description of

such a dinner.

The philosopher
c.

reads his discourse from a small.

finely-written manuscript,

The

Deipnosophist(B of Athena?us,

and the
-

Quccstiones

Convivialcs of Plutarch, are important literary

monuments

of the practice.
is

An

interesting corroboration of the literary references

afforded

by the mosaic pavement of a large villa at Hammam Grous, near Milev, in North Africa, where "the philosopher's apartment," or "chaplain's room" [filosophi locus), is specially marked, and near it is a lady (tho'
mistress of the house?) sitting under a palm-tree.

(The inscription

is

given in the Corpus Inscr. Lat. vol.


is

viii.

No. 10890, -where reference

made

to a

drawing of the pavement iu Koussot, Les Bains de Pom-

pei'uiua, Constantine, 1879).

II.

GREEK EDUCATION.

41

Bometimes, indeed, singularly like the chaplains of

whom

we

read in novels of the last century.

Lucian, in his

essay

"On

Persons

who

give their Society for Pay," has


life.

some amusing vignettes of their


sopher

One

is of

a philo-

who has

to

accompany

his patroness on a tour

he

is

put into a waggon with the cook and the lady'sis

maid, and there

but a scanty allowance of leaves

thrown in
is of

to ease his limbs against the jolting.^

Another

a philosopher

who

is

summoned by
will

his lady

and

complimented, and asked as an especial favour,


are so very kind
into the

"You
lapdog

and careful

you take

my

waggon with you, and see that the poor creature does not want for anything ?"2 Another is of a philosohaving her hair braided
her maid comes in with a
is

pher who has to discourse on temperance while his lady


is
:

hillet-douXj

and the discourse on temperance


an answer

suspended

until she has written


is

to her lover. ^

Another
he asks

of a philosopher

who

only gets his pay in doles of two

or three pence at a time,


for
it,

and

is

thought a bore
is

if

and whose

tailor or

shoemaker

meanwhile wait-

ing to be paid, so that even

when

the

money comes

it

seems to do him no good.^

It is natural to find that

Philosophy, which had thus become a profession, had


also

become degenerate.
It

It afforded

an easy means of

livelihood.
it it

was natural that some of those who adopted

should be a disgrace to their profession.

And

although

would be unsafe

to take every description of the great


it is difficult to

satirist literally,
is

yet

believe that there

not a substantial foundation of truth in his frequent


^

Lucian, de mere. cond. 32.


3

lb. 34.

H}. 36.

* Ih. 38.

42
caricatures.
fact that such

II.

GEEEK EDUCATION.
and
also the

The

fact of their frequency,

men

as he describes could exist, strengthen

the inference which other facts enable us to draw, as


to the large place

which the professional philosophers

occupied in contemporary society.


picture of Thrasycles
"
^
:

The following

is

his

He comes

along with his beard spread out and his eyebrows

raised, talking

eyes, with his hair

solemnly to himself, with a Titan-like look in his thrown back from his forehead, the very
This
is

picture of Boreas or Triton, as Zeuxis painted them.


tlie

morning dresses himself simply, and walks sedately, and wears a sober gown, and preaches long sermons about virtue, and inveighs against the votaries of pleasure then he has his bath and goes to dinner, and the butler offers him a large goblet of wine, and he drinks it down with as much gusto
in the
:

man who

as if

it

opposite

were the water of Lethe and he behaves in exactly the way to his sermons of the morning, for he snatches all
:

the tit-bits like a hawk, and elbows his neighbour out of the

way, and he peers into the dishes with as keen an eye as if he were likely to find Virtue herself in them and he goes on
;

preaching

all

the time about temperance and moderation, until

he

is

so dead-drunk that the servants

have to carry him

out.

jSTay,

besides this, there

is

not a

man
:

to beat
is

him

in the

way

of

lying and braggadocio and avarice


:

he

the

first

of flatterers

and the readiest of perjurers chicanery leads the way, and impudence follows after in fact, he is clever all round, doing
:

to perfection whatever he touches."

But nothing could more conclusively prove the great hold which these forms of education had upon their
4.

time than the fact of their persistent survival.

It

might

be maintained that the prominence which is given to them iu literature, their endowment by the State, and
1

Timo7i, 50, 51.

II.

GREEK EDUCATION.

43

their social influence, represented only a superficial

and

passing phase.
spreads
its

But when the product


its

of one generation

branches far and wide into the generations


roots

that succeed,

must be deep and firm in the


it

generation from which


of civilization

springs.

'No lasting element

grows upon the

surface.

Greek education
itself,

has been almost as permanent as Christianity


for similar reasons.

and

It passed from Greece into Africa

and the West. It had an especial hold first on the Eoman and then upon the Celtic and Teutonic populations of
Gaul ; and from the Galilean schools
bly by direct descent, to our
time.
it

has come, proba-

own country and our own

Two
(i.)

things especially have come

The place which

literature holds in general edu-

cation.

We educate

our sons in grammar, and in doing

so

we

feed them upon ancient rather than upon English

literature,

by simple continuation

of the first branch of

the mediteval trivmrn, which was itself a continuation of the Greek habit which has been described above.

The other point, though less important in itself, is even more important as indicating the strength of the Greek educational system. It is that we retain still its
(ii.)

technical terms and

many

of its scholastic usages, either

in their original Greek form or as translated into Latin

and modified by Latin habits, in the schools of the West. The designation "professor" comes to us from the Greek sophists, who drew their pupils by promises to
:

"profess" was to "promise," and to promise was the


characteristic of the class of teachers with

whom

in the
title

fourth century B.C.

Greek education began.

The

44

II.

GKEEK EDUCATION.
and became the general designation
titles,

lost its original force,

of a public teacher, superseding the special

" phi-

losopher," "sophist," "rhetorician," "grammarian," and

ending by being the synonym of "doctor."^

The

practice of lecturing, that

is

of giving instruction

by comments upon
in

reading an ancient author, with longer or shorter


his meaning,
of

comes

to us

from the schools

which a passage

Homer
The

or Plato or Chrysippus

was

read and explained.


first

" lecture" was probably in the


:

instance a student's exercise

the function of the

teacher was to

make remarks

or to give his
:

judgment
so

upon the explanation that was given


Icgere ^^ prcelegere,

it

was not

much

whence the existing

title of

"prae-

lector."^

The use
office,

of the

word " chair"

to designate the teacher's


to denote the

and

of the

word "faculty"

branch

of

knowledge which he teaches, are similar survivals of

Greek terms.^
^

Profiteri, professio, are tlie Latin translations of cTrayyeAAecr^at,


:

eVayyeAia

the latter words are found as early as Aristotle in connec-

tion with the idea of teaching,


StSao-Kciv 01 o-oipia-Tol TrpaTTet S
p. 1180/;,

ra

8e ttoXitiko.
ouSet's,

kirayykXXovTai

fiev

avrwv

Arist. EfJi.

N.

10. 10,

and apparently tovs eVayyeAAo/xevoDS is used absolutely for The first use oi projitcri "professors" in Soph. Elench. 13, p. 172a. in an absolute sense in Latin is probably in Pliny, e.g. Ep. 4. 11. 1,
"audistine Y. Licinianum in Sicilia profiteri," "is teaching rhetoric."
2

See note on
1. 8.

p.

33

an early use of prcelcgere in this sense

is

Quintil.
3

13.
is

FacuUas

the translation of 5rva/xts in

its

meaning

of an art or

branch of knowledge, which is found in Epictetus and elsewhere, e.g. a writer of the end Diss. 1. 8 tit., 8, 15, chiefly of logic or rhetoric of the third century draws a distinction between 5x'i'u/xts and rexvat,
:

and
in

classes rhetoric
'Jr.

under the former voL


ix.

Meuander,

Jlepl tViSetKTtKwf,

Walz, lihdf.

196.

II.

GREEK EDUCATION.
is

45
also

Tlie use of academical designations as titles

Greek

it

was written upon a man's tombstone that he


or

was "philosopher"

"sophist,"

"rhetorician," as in later times he

"grammarian" or would be designated

M.A.
is

or D.D.^

that of

The most interesting of these designations " sophist." The long academical history of the
at

word only ceased

Oxford a few years ago, when the

clauses relating to "sophistee generales" were erased as


obsolete from the statute-book.

The

restriction of the right to teach,

and the mode

of

testing a man's qualifications to teach, have come to us

from the same source.


of the fact

The former

is

probably a result

which has been mentioned above, that the

teachers of liberal arts were privileged and endowed.

The

State guarded against the abuse of the privilege, as


it

in subsequent times for similar reasons

put limitations

upon the appointment


case of

of the Christian clergy.

In the

some

of the professors at

Athens who were en-

dowed from the imperial

chest, the

Emperors seem

to

have exercised a certain right of nomination, as in our

own country the Crown nominates a "Eegius Professor;" ^


1

Instances of this practice are

(1)

grammaticus, in Hispania Tar;

raconensis,
maticcB, at

Corpus Inscr. Led.

ii.

2892, 5079

magister artis grara-

Saguntum, ihid. 3872 ; magister grammaticus Groicus, at Cordova, ihid. 2236 ; grammaticus Grxcus, at Trier, Corpus Inscr. Rhenan. 801 (2) philosoplms, in Greece, Corpus Inscr. Grcec. 1253; in Asia Minor, ihid. 3163 (dated a.d. 211), 3198, 3865, add. 4366 1 2 ; in Egypt, ihid. 4817; sometimes with the name of the school added,
:

e.g. at

Chieronea, c^iAoo-o^ov IIAaTwviKoV, ihid. 1628

at Brundisium,

pliilosophus Epicureus, ihid. 5783.


2

Marcus Aurelius himself nominated Theodotus

to be

" Regius

Professor of Rhetoric," but he entrusted the nomination of the Professors of

Philosophy to Herodes Atticus, Philostrat. V.S. 2. and Commodus nominated Polydeuces, ibid. 2. 12, p. 258,

3, p.

245/

46
"but in

II.

GREEK EDUCATION.

the case of others of those professors, the nominain the hands of


is,

tion

was

"the best and oldest and wisest


special Board.^

in the city," that

either the Areopagus, or the City

Council,

or,

as

some have thought, a

Elsewhere, and apparently without exception in later


times, the right of approval of a teacher

was in the hands

of the City Council, the ordinary body for the administration of municipal affairs.^

ferred the right might also take

The authority which conit away a teacher who


:

proved incompetent might have his licence withdrawn.'^

The
1

testing of qualifications preceded the admission to

Lucian, Eunuclms,

3, after

mentioning the endowment of the chairs,

says, eSci Se aTro^avovros avrl^v tivos

aAAov avTiKaO lut aaOai


1, p.

So/ci/xacr-

dkvra ^-qjn^ Ttov apicrTwv, which last words have been variously

understood

see the treatises

mentioned above, note


p. 59),

38, especially

Ahrens,
\pi](f>L(Tfj.a

p. 74,

Zumpt,

p. 28.

In the case of Libanius, there was a


i.

(Liban. de/ort. sua, vol.

lation of

Athenian usage in his time

to that

which points to an assimiwhich is mentioned in the

following note.
2
it

as a concession

This was fixed by a law of Julian in 362, which, however, states on the part of the Emperor " c^uia singulis civitati:

bus adesse ipse non possum, jubeo quisquis docere vult non rcpente nee temere prosiliat ad hoc munus sed judicio ordinis probatus decretum
curialium mereatur, optimorum conspirante consilio," Cud. Theodos. 13. 3. 5 ; but the nomination was still sometimes left to the Emperor
or his chief officer, the prefect of the city.

This has an especial interest


:

in connection with the history of St. Augustine

a request

was sent

from Milan
magister

to the prefect of the city at


:

Rome
sent,
5.
:

for the

nomination of a

rhetoi'iccs

St.

Augustine was

and so came under the


13.

influence of St. Ambrose, S. Aug. Covfess.


3

This

is

mentioned in a law of Gordian


si

" grammaticos sou oratores

decreto ordinis probatos,

nou

se utiles studentibus prcxbcant,


est,"

denuo

ab eodem ordine reprobari posse incognitum non A professor was sometimes removed 10. 52. 2.
being a Christian, Eunap, PruJutres.
p. 92.

Cod. Justin.

for other reasons

besides incompetency, e.g. Proluxiresius was removed

by Julian

for

II.

GEEEK EDUCATION.

47
sort of conge
it

office.

It

was sometimes superseded by a


; ^

d^elire

from the Emperor

but in ordinary cases

con-

sisted in the candidate's giving a lecture or taking part

in a discussion before either the Emperor's representative


or the City Council.^

system of

was the small beginning of that "examination" which in our own country and
It

time has grown to enormous proportions.

The

successful

candidate was sometimes escorted to his house, as a

mark

of honour, by the proconsul and the " examiners," just as in Oxford, until the present generation,

a "grand

compounder" might claim

to

be escorted home by the

Vice-chancellor and Proctors.^

In the

foui'th

century

appear to have come restrictions not only upon teaching,

but also upon studying

a student might probably go to

a lecture, but he might not formally announce his devotion to learning

by putting on the

student's

gown without

the leave of the professors, as in a

modern University a

student must be formally enrolled before he can assume


the academical dress.^

The
^

survival of these terms and usages, as indicating


1,

Alexander of Aphrodisias, de Fato,

says that he obtained his

professorship on the testimony, vtto t^s [xapTvpLa<;, of Severus and


Caracalla.
^

The

existence of a competition appears in Lucian, Eumichus,


is

3,

the fullest account


^

that of Eunapius, Prohceres. pp. 79 sqq.

Eunapius,

ibid. p. 84.

Olympiodorus, ap. Phot. Biblioth. 80; S. Greg. Naz. Oraf. 43 (20). 15, vol. i. p. 782; Liban. de fort, sua, vol. i. p. 14. The admission was probably the occasion of some academical sport the novice was
*
:

marched in mock procession to the baths, whence he came out with his gown on. It was something like initiation into a religious guild or order. There was a law against any one who assumed the philosopher's
dress without authority, "indebite et insolenter," Cud. TJieodos. 13.
3. 7.

48

II.

GEEEK EDUCATION.
to

the strength of the system

which they originally


any, traces of them.^

belonged,

is

emphasized by the fact that for a long


if

interval of time there are few,

They

are found in full force in Gaul in the fifth and


:

sixth centuries

they are found again

when

education

began to revive on a large scale in the tenth century


they then appear, not as
usages which had lasted
^

new
all

creations, but as terms

and

through what has been called

"the Benedictine era," without special nurture and without literary expression,
original roots.

by the sheer

persistency of their

This
tianity

is

the feature of the Greek


to

life into

which ChrisThere

came

which

I first invite your attention.

was a complex system of education, the main elements in


which were the knowledge of
of literary expression,
literature, the cultivation

and a general acquaintance with


This education was widely
society.
dif-

the rules of argument.


fused,
at
1

and had a great hold upon


in its

It

had been
Its

work
The

main

outlines for several centuries.


the Christian poets
:

last traces are in

for

example, in Sidonius
est;"

Apollinaris (t482), Carm. xxiii. 211, ed. Luetjohann, "quicquid rhetorics institutionis,

quicquid grammaticalis aut

palrestrre

in

Ennodius (t521), Carm. ccxxxiv, p. 182, ed. Vogel, and in ^;. 94, which is a letter of thanks to a grammarian for having successfully in Venantius Fortunatus (t 603), who instructed the -writer's nephew speaks of himself as " Parvula grammaticse lambens refluamina gutta*,
;

Khetorici exiguum prtelibans gurgitis haustum," V. Martini,


ed.

i.

29, 30,

Leo ; but there are traces in the same poets of the antagonism between classical and Christian learning which ultimately led to the disappearance of the former, e.g. Fortunatus speaks of Martin as
"doctor apostolicus vacuans ratione sophistas," V. Martini,
^
i.

139.

"La

periode boncdictiue,"

Leon Maitre, Les

ecoles 6pisco2)ales ci

monastigues de

V Occidentf

p. 173.

II.

GREEK EDUCATION.

49

effect in the

second century of our era had been to create

a certain habit of mind.

When

Christianity

came
of

into

contact with the society in


existed,
it

which that habit


it

mind
it

modified,

it

reformed,

elevated, the ideas

which

it

contained and the motives which stimulated


;

to action
fied

but

in its turn it

was

itself

profoundly modiaccepted
it.

by the habit

of

mind

of those

who

It

was impossible

for Greeks,

educated as they were with


to

an education which penetrated their whole nature,

receive or to retain Christianity in its primitive simplicity.


ficial
it
:

Their
it

own

life

had become complex and


its

arti:

had

its

fixed ideas and

permanent categories

necessarily gave to Christianity something of its

own

form.

The world

of the time

was a world,

I will not
its

say like our

own

world, which has already burst

bonds,

but like the world from which we are beginning to be


emancipated
type of
life,

world which had created an


artificial to

artificial

and which was too

be able to

recognize

its

own

artificiality

world whose schools,

instead of being the laboratories of the


future,

knowledge

of the

were forges in which the chains of the present

were fashioned from the knowledge of the past.


on the one hand,
larger
yet,
it

And

if,

incorporated Christianity with the


it

humanity from which

had

at first

been

isolated,

on the other hand, by crushing uncultivated earnest-

ness,

and by laying more

stress
it

on the expression of ideas


tended to stem the very
its

than upon ideas themselves,


forces

which had given Christianity

place,

and

to

change the rushing torrent of the river of God into a


broad but feeble stream.

Lectuee III.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN EXEGESIS.

Two thousand than we are now


writing.

years ago, the Greek world was nearer


to the first

wonder

of the invention of

The mystery

of it still

seemed divine. The fact

that certain signs, of

little

or no

meaning in themselves,
felt or

could communicate what a

man

thought, not only

to the generation of his fellows, but also to the generations

that

came afterwards, threw a kind


It gave

of

glamour over

them an importance and an improssiveness which did not attach to any spoken words.
wi'itten words.

They came
their
OTVTi.

in time to have, as

it

were, an existence of

Their precise relation to the person

who

first

uttered them, and their literal


their utterance,

meaning

at the time of

tended to be overlooked or obscured.

In the case of the ancient poets, especially Homer,


this

glamour

of

written words was accompanied, and

perhaps had been preceded, by two other feelings.

The one was the reverence


of the past
2)resent.

for antiquity.

The

voice

sounded with a

fuller note

than that of the

It

came from the age

of the heroes

who had
of noble

become

divinities.

It expressed the national legends

and the current mythology, the primitive types


life

and the simple maxims

of

awakening

reflection, the

III.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN EXEGESIS.

51
itself

^'wisdom of the ancients," which has sometimes


taken the place of religion.
inspiration.

The other was the belief in With the glamour of writing was blended the glamour of rhythm and melody. When the gods
spoke, they spoke in verse.^

The

poets sang under the

impulse of a divine enthusiasm.


the words
:

It

was a god who gave

the poet was but the interpreter.^

The

belief

was not merely popular, but was found


of the imperial age.

in the best

minds

''Whatever wise and true words

were spoken in the world about God and the universe, came into the souls of men not without the Divine will

and intervention through the agency of divine and prophetic men." ^ "To the poets sometimes, I mean the very ancient poets, there came a brief utterance from the
Muses, a kind of inspiration of the divine nature and
truth, like a flash of light

from an unseen

fire."^

The combination

of these three feelings, the

mystery

oi writing, the reverence for antiquity, the belief in


inspiration, tended to give the writings of the ancient

poets a unique value.


limitations of place

It lifted

them above the common

and time and circumstance.

The

verses of

Homer were

not simply the utterances of a

particular person with a particular

meaning

for a par-

from the

"DictfE per carmina sortes," Hor. A. P. 403. But title of Plutarch's treatise, Ilept rov yur)

it

may

be inferred

XP^^

efifierpa vvv ttjv

UvdCav, that the practice had ceased in the second century.


^

Cf. e.g. Pindar, Frag.


;

127(118), iiavr^veo
Aristides, vol.
i.

[xola-a

7rpo(f>aTV(r(o

8'

iyio
2

and, in later times,

^ius
i.

iii.

p. 22, ed.

Cant.

Dio Chrysostom, Orat


Orat. xxxvi. vol.

vol.
p.

p. 12, ed.

Dind.
OeCai <f>v(rm

* Id.

ii.

59

/cat ttov tls iiriTrvoia

T Kai

(j.Xy]6ua<i

KaOdwep auyi)

Trvpos i^ dcfjavovs Xd/xipavTOS.

e2

52

III.

GKEEK AND CHRISTIAN EXEGESIS.


Tliey had a universal validity.

ticiilar time.

They were

the voice of an undying wisdom.


of the

They were the Bible

Greek

races.

When the unconscious

imitation of heroic ideals passed


life, it

into a conscious philosophy of

was necessary that


be consonant with terms

that philosophy should be

shown

to

current beliefs,

by being formulated,
;

so to speak, in

of the current standards

and when, soon afterwards, the

conception of education, in the sense in which the term

has ever since been understood, arose,

it

was inevitable

that the ancient poets should be the basis of that education.

Literatui'e consisted, in effect, of the ancient poets.

Literary education necessarily meant the understanding


of them.

"I

consider," says Protagoras, in the Platonic

dialogue which bears his name,^ " that the chief part of a

man's education

is

to

be skilled in epic poetry


to

and

this

means that he should be able


1

understand what the


which he was held that

It

was a natural

result of the estimation in

lie

should sometimes have been regarded as being not only inspired,


:

but divine

the passages which refer to this are collected in G. Cuper,

Ajx'fheosis vel consecratio

Homeri
which

(in vol.
is

ii.

of Polenus's

Supplement
(figured,

to Gronovius's Thesaurus),
bas-relief
e.g.

primarily a commentary on the


in the British

by Archelaus of Priene, now

Museum
ii.

in Overbeck, Gcschichte der griechischen Plastik,

333).

The

idea has existed in


divine, but that so

much more recent times, much truth and wisdom


is,

not indeed that he was


could not have existed

outside Judaja.
titled,
ofj.rjpo's

There

for example, a treatise

by G. Croesus,

en-

ePpaLos sive liistoria Hebrceorum ah Ilomero Hehraicis

Avliich

nominilms ac sentcntiis conscripta in Odyssea et Iliade, Dordraci, 170-i, endeavours to prove both that the name Homer is a Hebrew word, that the Iliad is an account of the conquest of Canaan, and that
is

the Odyssey
ttji

a narrative of the wanderings of the children of Israel

to tlie

death of Mioses.

a I'lat. Frufai/. 72, p.

339

a.

III.

GKEEK AND CHRISTIAN EXEGESIS.


it

63
rightly

poets have said, and whether they have said


or not, and to

and to know how to draw The give an answer when a question is put to him." educators recognized in Homer one of themselves he,
distinctions,
:

too,

was a "sophist," and had aimed Greek continued


to

at educating

men.^

Homer was the common text-book


as long as

of the

grammar-schools

be taught, far on into

The study of him branched out in more than one direction. It was the beginning of that study of literature for its own sake which still holds its ground.
imperial times.
It

was continued

until far on in the Christian era, partly

by the

schools of textual critics, and partly

by

the suc-

cessors of the first sophists,

who sharpened

their wits

by

disputations as to Homer's meaning, posing difficulties

and solving them

of these disputations

some

relics sur-

vive in the Scholia, especially such as are based upon the


Questions of Porphyry.^

But

in the first conception, liteIt

rary and moral education had been inseparable.


impossible to regard

was
j

Homer simply as literature.


itself,

Literary

education was not an end in

but a means.

The
no
the

end was moral


less

training.

It

was imagined that


less

virtue,

than literature, could be taught, and


the one kind of education no

Homer was
so.

basis of
other.

than of the

Nor was

it difficult

for

him

to

become

For

though 'the thoughts


Ibid. 22, p.
:

of

men had

changed, and the

new

317 & oiio\oy(a re (ro<f)L(TTrjS sTvai /cat TratSeuciv dvOpiLFor detailed information as to the relation between the early sophists and Homer, reference may be made to a dissertation by W. 0.
vov<s.

Friedel, de sophistarum studiis Homericis, printed in the Dissertationes


^hilologiccz Halenses, Halis, 1873.
^

Cf,

H. Schrader, uber die porjphyrianischen

Ilias-Scholien,

Ham-

burg, 1872.

54

III.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN EXEGESIS.

education was bringing in

new

conceptions of morals,

Homer was
directions.
is

a force which could easily be turned in

All imaginative literature


;

is

plastic

new when it
There

used to enforce a moral

and the sophists could easily


texts.

preach sermons of their

own upon Homeric


;

was no fixed

traditional interpretation

and they were

but following a current fashion in drawing their own

meanings from him.


not a
rival.

He

thus became a support, and


3Iinor of Plato furnishes as

The Hippias
Homer.

pertinent instances as could be mentioned of this educational use of

The method
found in
It

lasted as long as

Greek

literature.

It is

full operation in

the

first

centuries of our era.


of the
its

was

explicitly recognized,

and most

prominent

writers of the time supply instances of

application.

"In

the childhood of the world," says Strabo,^

"men,

like children, had to be taught by tales;" and

Homer

told tales with a moral purpose.

"It has been contended,"

he says again,^ "that poetry was meant only to please:" on the contrary, the ancients looked upon poetry as a
form
life,

of philosophy, introducing us early to the facts of

and teaching us in a pleasant way the characters


of

and feelings and actions


were quoted,
like

men.
:

It
it

was from Homer


his verses that
us,

that moralists drew their ideals


verses
of

was

the
is

Bible with
in

to

enforce moral truths.

There

Dio Chrysostom^

a charming "imaginary conversation" between Philip and Alexander. "How is it," said the father, "that

Homer

is
1

the only poet you care for


Strab.
1. 2. 8. 2, vol.
i.
"^

there are others


\.

U.

2. 3.

Dio Chrys. Orat.

pp. 19, 20.

III.

GEEEK AND CHRISTIAN EXEGESIS.

55

who ought
son,

not to be neglected?"

"Because," said the


it is
;

"it

is

not every kind of poetry, just as


is fitting

not

every kind of dress, that


poetry of

for a

king

and the

Homer

is

the only poetry that I see to be truly


fit

noble and splendid and regal, and

for

one

who

will

some day rule over men."

And

Dio himself reads into


for example,^ the
staff

Homer many

a moral meaning.

When,

poet speaks of the son of Kronos having given the

and rights of a chief that he might take counsel


people, he

for the

meant

to

imply that not

all kings,

but only
staff

those

who have

a special gift of God,

had that

and
he

those rights, and that they had them, moreover, not for
their

own

gratification,
fact,

but for the general good

meant, in

that no bad

man

can be a true master

either of himself or of others

no, not if all the

Greeks

and
It

all

the barbarians join in calling

him

king.
of ethics that
all

was not only the developing forms


to find a support in

were thus made

Homer, but

the

varying theories of physics and metaphysics, one by one.

The Heracliteans
spoke of

held, for example, that

when Homer

" Ocean, the birth of gods,

and Tethys

their mother,"

he meant

to

say that

all

things are the offspring of


Platonists held that

flow and movement.^

The
of the

Zeus reminded Hera


heaven,
1
2

when time when he had hung


to

her trembling by a golden chain in the vast concave of


it

was God speaking


1, vol.
i.

matter which he had

Dio Chrys. Or at.


Plat. ThecBt. 9, p.

p. 3.

152 d, quoting Horn. II. 14. 201302. In later times, the same verse was quoted as having suggested and supported
the theory of Thales, Irena^us,
2.

14

Theodoret, Grcsc. Affect. Cur.

2. 9.

56

III.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN EXEGESIS.


tlio

taken and bound by


into the poets so

cbains of laws.^

The

Stoics read

much

Stoicism, that Cicero says, in good-

liumoured banter,

tliat

you would think the

old poets,

who had

really no suspicion of such things, to

have been

Stoical philosophers.^

Sometimes Homer was treated as a

kind of encyclopaedia. Xenophon, in his Banquetf makes


one of the speakers, who could repeat
tliat all

" the wisest of things ;"

human

Homer by heart, say mankind had written about almost and there is a treatise by an unknown

author of imperial times which endeavours to show in


detail that

he contains the beginning of every one of

the later sciences, historical, philosophical, and political.^

When

he

calls

men

deep-voiced and

women

high-

voiced, he

shows his knowledge

of the distinctions of
its

music.

When

he gives to each character

appropriate

style of speech,
is

he shows his knowledge of rhetoric.

He

the father of political science, in having given

exam-

ples of each of the three forms of


aristocracy,

government

monarchy,
tactics

democracy.

He

is

the father of military

science, in the information

which he gives about

and siege-works.
be wrong

He knew and

taught astronomy and

medicine, gymnastics and surgery; "nor would a


if

man
of

he were to say that he was a teacher

painting also."

This indifference to the actual meaning of a writer,


1

Celsus in Origen,
Cic.

c.

Cels. 6. 42, referring to

Horn.

II. 15.

18 sqq,

N. D.

1.

15

"ut etiam veterrimi

poeta^ qui hccc nc

quidem

suspicati sint, Stoici fuisse videantur."


2 *

Xcn. Sjpnpos.
Ps-Plutarcli,

4.

3. 5.

do,

vita ct poesl

Homeri,

vol. v. pp.

1056

sqq., chapters

148, 1G4, 182, 192,216.

III.

GEEEK AND CHRISTIAN EXEGESIS.


of reading

o7

and the habit

him by

the light of the reader's

own
of

fancies,

have a certain analogy in our own day in

the feeling with


art.

which we sometimes regard other works

We stand before
St.

some great masterpiece

of paintare,

ing
as

the

Cecilia or the Sistine

Madonna

and
of
it.

it

were, carried off our feet


critics if
it.

by the wonder

We
emo-

must be cold
Eaffaelle
tions.

we simply

ask ourselves what

meant by

We interpret it by our own

The

picture speaks to us with a personal and


It links itself

individual voice.
ries of the past

with a thousand memoof the future. of a lost


It

and a thousand dreams

translates us into another world

the world

and

impossible love, the dreamland of achieved aspirations,

the tender and half -tearful heaven of forgiven sins


are ready to believe,
if it

we

only for a moment, that Eaffaelle

meant by

it all

that

means

to us

and for what he did

actually mean,

we have but

little care.

But

these tendencies to

draw a moral from

all

that

Homer wrote, and to read philosophy into it, though common and permanent, were not universal. There was
an instinct in the Greek mind, as there
times,
ists
is

in

modern
literal-

which rebelled against them.


insisted that the

There were

who

words should be taken as they

stood,

and that some of the words as they stood were


There were, on the other hand, apoloXenophanes, which
1.

clearly immoral.^

The

earliest expression of this feeling is that of

is

twice quoted by Sextus Empiricus, adv.

Gramm.

288, adv. Phys.

193:
TTavra ^eois dvW'qKav Ofirjpos 6 'Ho"i'oSos re
ocro-a Trap

dv9pu>7rotcriv di'ttSea Kal

^oyos

ecrru

58
gists

III.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN EXEGESIS.

who

said sometimes that

Homer

reflected faithfully

the chequered lights and shadows of

human

life,

and

sometimes that the existence of immorality in

Homer

must

clearly

be allowed, but that


evil,

if

a balance were struck

between the good and the


largely to predominate.^

the good would be found

There were other apologists who

made a
elements
their

distinction
:

between the divine and the human


it

the poets sometimes spoke,

was

said,

on

own

account

some of their poetry was


:

inspired,

and some was not


''

the

Muses sometimes
if,

left

them

and they may very properly be forgiven

being men,

they made mistakes

when

the

divinity

which spoke

through their mouths had gone away from them."^

But
poets,

all

these apologies were insufficient.

The chasm

between the older religion


progress

which was embodied in the

and the new ideas which were marching in steady

away from the Homeric world, was widening day by day. A reconciliation had to be found which had deeper roots. It was found in a process of interpretation whose strength must be measured by its permanence. The process was based upon a natural tendency.

The unseen working


which by an

of the will

which

lies

behind

all

voluntary actions, and the unseen working of thought


instinctive process causes

some of those

actions to be symbolical, led

men

in comparatively early

times to find a meaning beneath the surface of a record


or representation of actions.
less

A narrative

of actions, no

than the actions themselves, might be symbolical.

It

might contain a hidden meaning.


*

Men who
pp. 24, 25.

retained

Plutarch, de and. iwct.

c.

4,

'

Lucian, Ju_pit

coiifat. 2.

III.

GEEEK AND CHRISTIAN EXEGESIS.

59

their reverence for

Homer,

or wlio at least

were not pre-

pared to break with the current belief in him, began to


search for such meanings.
so

They were

assisted in doing

by the concomitant development of the "mysteries.'^ The mysteries were representations of passages in the history of the gods which, whatever their origin, had
become symbolical.
It is possible that

no words of ex-

planation were spoken in


standing, habituating the

them

but they were, notwithto symbolical

Greek mind both

expression in general,

and

to the finding of physical or

religious or moral truths in the representation of fantastic

or even immoral actions.^


It
is

uncertain

when

this

method

of interpretation

began

to

be applied

to ancient literature.

It

was part

of

the general intellectual


It is

movement by the
It

of the fifth century B.C.

found in one of

its

forms in Hecatseus,

who

explained

the story of Cerberus

existence of a poisonous
It

snake in a cavern on the headland of Tsenaron.^


elaborated

was

by the

sophists.

was deprecated by Plato.


was recognized

The connection

of allegory -with the mysteries


c.

Heraclitus Ponticus,

6, justifies

his interpretation of Apollo as the


0.1

sun, cK Tcuv iMva-TiKwv

Aoywv ovs

aTvoppqToi TeXeraL 6'eoAoyo{;crt


c.

ps-Demetrius Phalereus, de interpret,


IX. p. 47,

99, 101,
.

ajy.
.

Walz, Rhett. Gr.

/zeyaAetov Tt icm. Kal

rj

dXXrjyopca
ctAAo Tt

Trav
.

yap to wroyoovra
fJLVcrTt']pi.a

fxevov ^o/Je/DcijTaTov Kal

aAAos
tt/dos

etKa^'et

5io Kal
:

V aXX-qyopiais Xeyerai

eK7rAr/^tv Kal cfiptK-qv

SO Macrobius,

til

Somn.

an account of the way in which the poets veiled truths in symbols, " sic ipsa mysteria figurarum cuniculis operiuntur ne That a phy. vel hsec adeptis nuda rerum talium se natura prcebeat."
Scip. 1. 2, after
sical

explanation lay behind the scenery of the mysteries


e.g.

is

stated else'

where,

by Theodoret, Grac.
3. 25.

Affect. Cur.

i.

vol. iv. p. 721,

without

being connected with the allegorical explanation of the poets.


2

Pausan,

46.

60
''

III.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN EXEGESIS.

If I disbelieved it," lie

makes Socrates

say,^ in reference

to the story of Boreas

and Oreithyia, "


:

as the philoso-

phers do, I should not be unreasonable

then I might

say, talking like a philosopher, that Oreithyia

was a

girl

who was caught by


playing on the

a strong

wind and
;
.

carried ofE while


it

cliffs

yonder

but

would take a
to deal

long and laborious and not very happy lifetime

with

all

such questions

and

for

my own

part I cannot

investigate
I first

them

until, as

the Delphian precept bids me,

Know

myself."

Nor

will he admit allegorical

interpretation as a sufficient vindication of

Homer

" The

chaining of Hera, and the flinging forth of Hephoestus

by

his father,

and

all

the fightings of gods which

Homer

has described,

we

shall not

admit into our

state,

whether

with allegories or without them."


historical tradition of the

But the

direct line of

method seems

to

begin with

Anaxagoras and
allegory

his school.^

In Anaxagoras himself the


:

was probably
vii'tues

ethical

he found in Homer a

symbolical account of the movements of mental powers

and moral
earlier or

Zeus was mind, Athene was


it is

art.

But the method which, though

found in germ among


to

contemporary writers, seems

have been

first

formulated by his disciple Metrodorus, was not ethical


1

Plat. Phccdr. \x

229
d.

c.

2 Plat.
2

Resp.

p.

378

Diogenes Laertius,
first

2.

11, quotes Favorinus as saying that

goras was the

who showed
p.

that the

Anaxapoems of Hoiuer had virtue

and righteousness

for their subject.

If the later traditions (Georg.

Syncollus, Chronogr.

149

c)

could be trusted, the disciples of Anaxa-

goras were the authors of the explanations which Plato attributes to


01

vvv

irepl "Ofi-qpov Setvot,

and which

tried

by a

fanciful etymology to

prove that Athene

Avas vovv re Kal SidyoLay (Plat. Cratijl.

407

h).

III.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN EXEGESIS.

61

but

pliysical.^

By a

remarkable anticipation of a modern

by a survival of memories of an earlier religion, the Homeric stories were treated as a symbolical representation of physical phenomena. The gods were
science, possibly

the powers of nature


their loves,

their gatherings, their


battles,

movements,

and their

were the play and inter-

action and apparent strife of natural forces.

The method

had

for
;

many
it
;

centuries an enormous hold

upon the Greek


scholars

mind

lay beneath the whole theology of the S^pical


it

schools

was largely current among the

and

critics of the early empire.^

Its

most detailed exposition

is

contained in two writerSy

of both of
is

whom

so little is personally

a division of opinion whether the

known that there name of the one was

Heraciitus or Heraclides,^ and of the other Cornutus or


Diog. Laert.

2.

11

Tatian, Orat.
Ofjiy^pov

ad

Grt2cos,

c.

21,

Mr^rpo'Swpos
et?
:

Se o Aajtii^aKTjvos v

tw

ivepi

Xiav eujj^ws StetAcKrat Travra

dWrjyopiav

fieraycoi/.

later tradition

used the name of Pherecydes


6, p.

Isidore, son of Basilides, in


2

Clem, Alex. Strom.

767.

On

the general subject of allegorical interpretation, especially ia

regard to Homer, reference

may be made
;

to

Heraciitus Ponticus mentioned below

L.

losopMca de allegoria Homerica, Halse,


2)hamus, pp. 155, 844, 987;
Philologie, Bd.
i.

N. Schow in the edition of H. Jacob, Dissertatio pld1785 ; C. A. Lobeck, Aglao-

Grafenhau, Geschichte der Massischen

p.

211.

It has

been unnecessary for the present


(e.g.

purpose to make the distinction which has sometimes


LitteratHscher Nacldass, ed.

Lauer,

Wichmann, Bd.

ii.

p.

105) been drawn

between allegory and symbol.


^

The most

recent edition
:

is

Heracliti Allegorlce Homericce, ed. E.

Schow, Gottingen, 1782, contains a Latin translation, a good essay on Homeric allegory, and a critical letter

Mehler, Leyden, 1851

that of N.

by Heyne. It seems probable that the treatise is really anonymous, and that the name Heraciitus was intended to be that of the philosopher of Ephesus see Diels, Doxographi Ch'ceci, p. 95 .
:

62

III.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN EXEGESIS.


Stoics,

Phornutus;^ but both were

both are most probably

assigned to the early part of the first century of our era,

and in both

of

them the physical

is

blended with an

ethical interpretation.
1.

Heraclitus begins

apologetic purpose.

by the definite avowal of his His work is a vindication of Homer


"

from the charge of impiety.


be impious
^'

He would

unquestionably
it
is,

if

he were
of

not allegorical ;" ^ but as

there

is

no stain

unholy fables in his words: they


Apollo
is

are pure and free from impiety."^

the sun;
:

the
it

''

far-darter"

is

the sun sending forth his rays

when
it

is

said that Apollo slew

men with
when
it is

his arrows,
of

is

meant that there was a pestilence in the heat


time.*

summerAthene

Athen^
to

is

thought
it

said that

came

Telemachus,
first

is

meant only that the young upon the waste and pro-

man

then

began
:

to reflect

fligacy of the suitors

a thought, shaped like a wise old

man, came, as
of Proteus

it

were, and sat by his side.^


is

The

story

and Eidothea

an allegory of the original


shapes
is
:

formless matter taking

many

the story of Ares

and Aphrodite and Hephaestus

a picture of iron sub-

dued by

fire,

and restored
is

to its original hardness

by

Poseidon, that
^

by

water.^
critical,
is

The most

recent,

and best

edition is

by

C. Lang, ed. 1881,

in Teubner's series.

More help

aflbrded to an ordinary student

by

that which was edited from the notes of de Villoison


tingen, 1844.
^
c.

by Osann,

Gijt-

1,
c.

TravTWS yap
5,

y)(Te(3rjaev

el [irjSev

dXXi^y6pr](Tev

he defines

allegory,

/xi/

yap aXAa

fxev dyopev(i)v rpoTTOS

eVepa 8e civ Aeyet

(ri]fj.aivwv

iTr(iivvp.(ii<i

dXXqyopia KaAeirai.
* c. 8.
'
c.

c. 2. c.

^ c. Gl.

66

69.

III.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN EXEGESIS.

C3

2.

Cornutus writes in vindication not so much of the


:

piety of the ancients as of their knowledge


as

they knew
it

much

as

men

of later times, but they expressed

at greater length
his interpretation

and by means of symbols.


of those

He

rests

symbols to a large extent

upon etymology. The science of religion was to him, as it has been to some persons in modern days, an extension
of the science of philology.

The following
is

are examples

Hermes (from

epeiv,

''to

speak")

the power of speech


their peculiar

which the gods sent from heaven as


distinguishing gift to men.

and

He is called the

"conductor,"

because speech conducts one man's thought into his neighbour's soul. He is the " bright- shiner," because
speech makes dark things clear.
the symbols of
souls," because
''

His winged

feet are

winged words."

He

is

the " leader of

words soothe the soul

to rest;

and the

^'awakener from sleep," because words rouse


action.

men

to

The

serpents twined round his staff are a symbol

of the savage natures that are

calmed by words, and

their discords gathered into harmony.^

The

story of

Prometheus (''forethought"), who made a man from


clay, is

an allegory of the providence and forethought


:

of the universe
it

he

is

said to have stolen


of

fire,

because
:

was the forethought


have stolen
it
:

men found

out

its
it

use

he

is

said to

from heaven, because

came down
is

in a lightning-flash

and

his being chained to a rock

a picture of the quick inventiveness of

human thought
life, its

chained to the painful necessities of physical

liver

gnawed

at unceasingly
1
c.

by petty

cares.^
* c. IS.

16.

C4

III.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN EXEGESIS.

Two

other examples of the method

may be

given from

later writers, to

show the variety

of its application.

The one
of our era.

is

from

Sallust, a writer of the fourth

century

lie thus explains the story of the

judgment

of Paris.

The banquet

of the gods

is

a picture of the

vast supra-mundane Powers, who are always in each


other's society.

The apple

is

the world, which

is

thrown
itself

from the banquet by Discord, because the world


is

the play of opposing forces

and

different qualities

are given to the world


to

by

different Powers, each trying


;

win the world


life,

for itself

and Paris

is

the soul in

its

sensuous

which

sees not the other

Powers in the
is

world, but only Beauty, and says that the world

the

property of Love.^

The other

is

from a writer

of a late

but uncertain age.

He
of a

deals only with the Odyssey.

Its hero is the picture

man who
that

is

tossed

upon the

sea of

life,

drifted this

by adverse winds of fortune and of passion the companions who were lost among the Lotophagi are pictures of men who are caught by the baits of pleasure

way and

and do not return


over the sea of

to reason as their guide

the Sirens
j)ass

are the pleasures that tempt and allure all


life,

men who

and against which the only counter-

charm

is to fill

one's senses

and powers of mind

full of

divine words and actions, as Odysseus filled his ears

with wax,
pleasure
^

that,

no part of them being

left

empty^

may knock
vol.
iii.

at their doors in vain.c.

Sallust, de diis et viundo,

4,

in Mullacli, Fragnienfa Philoso-

phorum Grcecorum,
-

p. 32.

Incerti Scrlpton's Gncci

Fahnhc aliquot Homerica: de Vlixis

crrori'

bus ethice exiAicatce, ed. J. Columbus, Lei Jen, 1745.

III.

GREEK AND CHEISTIAN EXEGESIS.

G5

The method survived


original purpose failed.

as a literary habit long after its

The mythology which


but in so passing,
it

it

had
took

been designed

to vindicate passed
;

from the sphere of


it

religion into that of literature

with

it

the method to which

had given

rise.

The
|

habit of trying to find an arriere pensee beneath a man's


actual words had

become

so inveterate, that all great

writers without distinction were treated as writers of


riddles.

The

literary class insisted that their functions

were needed as
not

interpreters,

and that a plain man could

know what
Augustan

a great writer meant.

"The

use of

symbolical speech," said Didymus, the great grammarian


of the
age, "is characteristic of the wise
its

man,

and the explanation of


is said

meaning."^ Even Thucydides

by

his biographer to

have purposely made his

style obscure that

he might not be accessible except to

the truly wise.^

It tended to

become a fixed idea

in the

minds

of

many men

that religious truth especially

must

y/

be wrapped up in symbol, and that symbol must contain


religious truth.

The
is

idea has so far descended to the

present day, that there are, even now, persons


that a truth which

who think

obscurely stated

is

more worthy

of respect, and more likely to be divine, than a truth

which "he that runs may read."

The same kind


1
*

of difficulty

which had been

felt

on a

Clem. Alex. Strom.

5. 8, p.

673.
c.

Mavcellinus, Vita Thuajdidis,


I'va jxi] Tracriv etjj

35, do-a(^w5 5e Aeywi/ dvijp eVtTJj-

Ses

ySaros

/>ir;8e

evreXrjS (^atVr/Tat TravTt

tw

fSovXc/xeyia

voovfievos ev^cpws
Oaviid^rjTai.

aAAa

tois Atav cro^ois SoKt/^a^o'/xci'os Trapa tovtois

66

III.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN EXEGESIS. Greek world in regard


to

large scale in the


felt in
I
I

Homer, was

no

less a

degree by those Jews

students of Greek philosophy in


sacred books.

who had become regard to their own

The Pentateuch,
It,

in a higher sense than

Homer, was regarded


inspiration of God.

as having been written under the

no

less

than Homer, was so


that
it

inwrought into the minds of


set
aside.
It,

men

conld not be

no

less

than Homer, contained some


than to Homer, was
A^eils

things which, at least on the surface, seemed inconsistent

with morality.

To

it,

no

less

applicable the theory that the words were the

of

a hidden meaning.

The

application fulfilled a double

purpose

it

enabled educated Jews, on the one hand, to

reconcile their

own

adoption of Greek philosophy with

their continued adhesion to their ancestral religion, and,

on the other hand,

to

show

to the

educated Greeks with

whom

they associated, and

whom
It

they frequently

ti'ied

to convert, that their literature

was neither barbarous,

nor unmeaning, nor immoral.


that, just as in
rical

may be

conjectured

Greece proper the adoption of the allego-

method had been helped by the existence of the mysteries, so in Egypt it was helped by the large use in earlier times of hieroglyphic writing, the monuments of
which were
all

around them, though the writing

itself

had

ceased.^
earliest

The

Jewish writer of

this school of
is

whom any
of the
-i

remains have come down to us,


bulus (about
^

reputed to be AristO'

B.C.
is

170

150).^
1.

In an exposition
5,
:

The analogy
It
is

drawn by Clem. Alex. Strom.

chapters

and

7.

impossible not to mention Aristobxilus


of

he

is

quoted by

Clement

Alexandria {Strum.

15,

22;

5. 1-i;

G. 3),

and extracts

III.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN EXEGESIS.


is

67

Pentateiicli

which he

said to

have addressed

to

Ptolemy

Philometor, he boldly claimed that, so far from the Mosaic


writings being outside
the sphere of philosophy, the
their philosophy

Greek philosophers had taken


"Moses," he
tells

from them.

said,

"using the figures

of visible things,

us the arrangements of nature and the constitutions

of important matters."

The anthropomorphisms
this principle.

of the

Old Testament were explained on

The

"hand"

of

God, for example, meant His power. His

" feet," the stability of the world.

Put by far the most considerable monument of this mode of interpretation consists of the works of Philo. They are based throughout on the supposition of a hidden meaning. Put they carry us into a new world. The hidden meaning is not physical, but metaphysical and spiritual. The seen is the veil of the unseen, a robe
thrown over
ceals
it

which marks

its

contour, " and half con-

and half reveals the form within."

It

would be easy

to interest

you, perhaps even to

amuse you, by quoting some


which Philo gives

of the strange

meanings

to the narratives of familiar incidents.

Put

I deprecate the injustice

which has sometimes been


which
allegorical interit

done to him by taking such meanings apart from the


historical circumstances out of

pretation grew, and the purpose


to serve.

which

was designed
which I have

I will give only one passage,


it

chosen because

shows as well as any other the contem8.

from him are given by Eusebius {Prap. Evang.


the genuineness of the information that
controverted and has given rise to
will be
p.

10;

13. 1.2; but

we

possess about

him

is

much

much literature,
i.

of

which an account

found in

Schiirer,

Geschichte des judischen Vollces, 2er Th.

760

Drummond, PMlo-Judceus,

242.

f2

68

III.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAX EXEGESIS.

porary existence of both, the methods of interpretation of

which I have spoken


narrative,
cally
:

that

of finding a moral in every

and that

of interpreting the narrative symboliliteral,

the former of these Philo calls the

the

latter the

deeper meaning.

The
is
^
:

text

is

Gen. xxviii. 11,

"

He

took the stones of that place and put them beneath


;"

his

head

the commentary

"The words

are wonderful, not only because of their alle-

gorical and physical meaning, but also because of their literal teaching of trouble and endurance. The writer does not think that a student of virtue should have a delicate and luxurious
life,

imitating those

who

are called fortunate, but

who

are in

reality full of misfortunes, eager anxieties

and

rivalries,

whose

whole

life

the Divine Lawgiver describes as a sleep and a dream.


after

These are men who,

spending their days in doing injuries

homes and upset them I mean, not the houses they live in, but the body \vhich is the home of the soul by immoderate eating and drinking, and at night lie down in soft and costly beds. Such men are not the disciples
to others, return to their

of the sacred word.

Its disciples are real

men, lovers of tempe-

rance and sobriety and modesty, who make self-restraint and contentment and endurance the corner-stones, as it were, of
their lives
:

who

rise superior to

money and

pleasure and fame

who
and

are ready, for the sake of acquiring virtue, to endure hunger


thirst,

heat and cold: whose costly couch


is

is

a soft
is

turf,

whose bedding
men, Jacob
is

grass and leaves, whose pillow

a heap of

stones or a hillock rising a little above the ground.

Of such
:

an example

he

put a stone for his pillow

a little

while afterwards (v. 20), we fiud him asking only for nature's wealth of food and raiment he is the archetype of a soul that disciplines itself, one who is at war with every kind of effemi:

nacy.
"

in symbol.

But the passage has a further meaning, which is conveyed You must know tliat the divine place and the holy
*

Philo, de somniis,

i.

20, vol.

i.

p.

639.

III.

GEEEK AND CHEISTIAX EXEGESIS. who

C9

ground
souls.

is

full of incorporeal Intelligences,

are immortal

It is

one of these that Jacob takes and puts close to his


is,

mind, which

as

it

were, the head of the combined person,

body and

soul.

He

does so under the pretext of going to sleep,

but in reality to find repose in the Intelligence which he has


chosen, and to place all the burden of his
life

upon

it."

In

all

this,

Philo was following not a

Hebrew but
as the

Greek method.
of the

He

expressly speaks of

it

method

Greek mysteries.

He

addresses his hearers


to

by

the

name which was given

those

who were being


to

initiated.

He

bids
it

them be
was

purified before they listen.

And

in this

way

possible for

him

be a Greek

philosopher without ceasing to be a Jew.

The

earliest

methods

of Christian exegesis

were conat the

tinuations of the methods

which were common

time to both Greek and Grseco-Jud^ean writers.

They
Just as

were employed on the same subject-matter.

the Greek philosophers had found their philosophy in

Homer,
theology.
''

so

Christian wi'iters

found in him Christian

"When he

rej^resents

Odysseus as saying,^
let there

The

rule of

many

is

not good

be one ruler,"

he means to indicate that there should be but one

God
us

and his whole poem


that comes of having

is

designed to show the mischief


gods.^

many

When

he

tells

that Hephaestus represented on the shield of Achilles

" the earth, the heaven, the sea, the sun that rests not,

and the moon full-orbed," ^ he


1

is

teaching us the divine

Horn.

II. 2.

204.

Ps-Justin (probably Apollonius, see Driiseke, in the Jalirh. f. ]pTOTheologie, 1885, p. 144),
II. 18.
c.

Want.
3

17.

Horn.

483.

70

III.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN EXEGESIS.

order of creation whicli he learned in

Egypt from the

books of Moses. ^

So Clement of Alexandria interprets

the withdrawal of Oceanus and Tethys from each other


'^to

mean

the separation of land and sea;^ and he holds


Achilles, ''"Why

that

Homer, when he makes Apollo ask

fruitlessly

pursue him, a god," meant to show that the

divinity cannot be apprehended

Some
skirts

of the philosophical

by the bodily powers.* schools which hung upon the


such interpretations of

of Christianity mingled

Greek mythology with


Testament.

similar interpretations of the


to

Old

For example, the writer


is

whom

the

name

Simon Magus
and

given,

is

said to have "interpreted in

whatever way he wished both the writings of Moses


also those of the

(Greek) poets ;"^ and the Ophite

writer, Justin, evolves an elaborate

cosmogony from a

story of Herakles narrated in Herodotus,^ combined with

the story of the garden of Eden.^


tion

was

to

But the main applicathe Old Testament exclusively. The reasons


alle-

given for believing that the Old Testament had an


gorical
^

meaning were precisely analogous


c.

to those

which

Ps-Justin,

28.

Horn.
//.

II. 14.

206

Clem. Al. Strom.

5. 14, p.

708.

22, 8; Clem. Al. Strom. 5. 14, p.

a keen eye to see the Gospel in Homer.


the Cyclopes say to Polyplicmus
6 fxkv 6i)
fxi']
:

719; but it sometimes required For example, in Odijss. 9. 410,

Tt's ere

fiia^trai oiov eovra,

I'orcroi'

y ov
14)

ttws cVti Atos fieydXov uAeacrPat.

Clement (Strom.
but
jjjjTis

5.

makes

this to

be an evident "divination" of
is,

the Father and the Son.

His argument
of God.
G. 14.

apparently,

/xvyrts

= /x5)t6s

= Aoyo?

therefore the vocros Aios, which

fiiJTLS

(by a

LiavTiia.'i

eviTToxov) the

Son

*
6

Hippol. Philosojjl Aimena,

Herod.

4.

810,

Hippol.

5.

21.

III.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN EXEGESIS.


in respect to

71

had been given

Homer.

There were many

things in the Old Testament which jarred upon the

nascent Christian consciousness.

" Far be

it

from us

to

believe," says the writer of the Clementine Homilies,^

" that the Master of the universe, the Maker of heaven

He did not know for who then does foreknow? and if He 'repents,' who is perfect in thought and firm in judgment ? and if He
and
earth,
'

tempts

'

men

as though

^hardens' men's hearts,


H-e 'blinds' them,
desires
if
'

who makes them wise? and if who makes them to see? and if He
whose then are
sacrifices,
all

a fi'uitful hill,'

things
is

and
that
is

He

wants the savour of


if

who

it

needeth nothing? and


it

He

delights in lamps,

who

that set the stars in

heaven?"
Homeric mythoi

One

early answer to all such difficulties was, like a

similar answer to difficulties about the


logy, that there

was a human
:

as well as a divine element


it

^
/
1

in the Old Testament

some things in

were

true,

and

some were

false:

and "this was indeed the very reason

why

the Master said, 'Be genuine money-changers,'^

testing the Scriptures like coins, and separating the good

from the bad." But the answer did not generally

prevail.

The more common

solution, as also in the case of Homer,

was that Moses had written in symbols in order conceal his meaning from the unwise and Clement
;

to of

Alexandria, in an elaborate justification of this method,

mentions as analogies not only the older Greek poetry,

but also the hieroglyphic writing of the Egyptians.^ The

Old Testament thus came


1

to

be treated allegorically.
^

Chmentin. Horn.

2.

43, 44.
5. 4, p.

n^

2. 51.

Clem. Alex. Strom.

237.

72

III.

GEEEK AND CHRISTIAN EXEGESIS.

large part of such interpretation was inlierited.

The

coincidences of mystical interpretation between Philo and the Epistle of Barnabas

show that such

interpretations

were becoming the common property of Jews and JudteoChristians.^


data.

But the method was soon applied to new Exegesis became apologetic. Whereas Philo and
had dealt mainly with the Pentateuch, the

his school

early Christian writers

came

to deal

mainly with the

prophets and poetical books;

and whereas Philo was


of

mainly concerned

to

show that the writings


of the
;

Moses

contained Greek philosophy, the Christian writers endea-

voured

to

show that the writings


to

Hebrew preachers

and poets contained Christianity


been content
as

and whereas Philo had


having

speak of the wiiters of the Old Testament^


poets, as

Dio Chrysostom spoke of the Greek


stirred

been

by a divine enthusiasm, the Christian writers


flutes

soon came to construct an elaborate theory that the poets

and preachers were but as the


men. 2

through which the

Breath of God flowed in divine music into the souls of

The

prophets, even

more than the method

poets, lent

them-

selves easily to this allegorical

of interpretation.

The nahi was

in an especial sense the messenger of


of

God
was

and an interpreter
often a parable.

His

will.

But

his message

He saw

visions

and dreamed dreams.

He
1

wrote,

not in plain words, but in pictures.

The

These are given by

J.

G. Rosenmiiller, Hisioria Interpretationi


vol.
i.

librurum sacrorum in ccdesia Christiana,


2
c. 8,

p. 63.

Athenag. Lcgat.
plectrum.

c.

19: ps-Justin (Apollonius), Cohort, ad.

Grcec,

uses the analogous metaphor of a harp of which the Divine Spirit

is i\\Q

III.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN EXEGESIS.

73

meaning of the pictures was often purposely oLscure.

The Greek word " prophet" sometimes properly belonged^ not to the nahi himself, but to those who, in his own
time or in after time, explained the riddle of his message.
1

When
tion of

the message passed into literature, the interpretait

became linked with the growing conception of

the foreknowledge and providence of


lieved that

God:

it

was be-

He
nahi,

not only

knew

all

things that should

come
men.

to pass,

but also communicated His knowledge to

The

through

whom He

revealed His will as

to the present,

was

also the channel

through

whom He

revealed His intention as to the future.

The prophetic

writings came to be read in the light of this conception.

The

interpreters wandered, as

it

were, along vast corri-

dors whose walls were covered with hieroglyphs and


paintings.

They found

in

them symbols which might


times.

be interpreted of their

own

They went on

to

infer the divine ordering of the present

from the coin-

cidence of

its

features with features that could be traced

in the hieroglyphs of the past.

similar conception

prevailed in the heathen world.

It lay beneath

the

many forms of divination. Hence Tertullian^ speaks of Hebrew prophecy as a special form of divination, " divinatio prophetica."

So

far

from being strange

to

the

Greek world,

it

was accepted.

Those who read the Old


its

Testament without accepting Christianity, found in


recorded in the heathen mythologies.

symbols prefigurings, not of Christianity, but of events

The
:

Shiloli

of

Jacob's song was a foretelling of Dionysus

the virgin's

son of

Isai/ih

was a picture
*

of Perseus

the Psalmist's

Tertull. adv.

Marc.

3. 5.

74
*'

III.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN EXEGESIS.

strong as a giant to run his course"

was a prophecy

of

Herakles.^

The
effect.

fact that this

was an accepted method


it

of inter-

pretation enabled the Apologists to use


It

with great

became one

of the chief evidences of Chris-

Itianity.

Explanations of the meaning of historical events

and poetical figures which sound strange or impossible


to

modern

ears,

so far

from sounding strange or imposbe upon his

sible in the second century, carried conviction with them.

When

it

was
it

said, "

The government
it

shall

shoulder,"

was meant that Christ should be extended was


said,

on the cross;- when


garment in the blood
red juice of the grape,

"He

shall dip his

of the grape," it

was meant that

his blood should be, not of

human origin, but, like the from God f when it was said that
of

"

He

shall receive the

power

Damascus,"

it

was meant

that the power of the evil demon who dwelt at Damascus should be overcome, and the prophecy was fulfilled when the Magi came to worship Christ.'* The convergence of a large number of such interpretations upon the Gospel
history

was a powerful argument against both Jews and Greeks. I need not enlarge upon them. They have
of Christian teaching

formed part of the general stock


ever since.

But

I will

that the basis of this


60

draw your attention to the fact use of the Old Testament was not

much

the idea of prediction as the prevalent practice

of treating ancient literature as symbolical or allegorical.

The method came


1

to
i.

be applied to the books which


2 ji^

Justin
Ih.
i.

M. AiwL

54.

i 35,

32.

* Ih.

Tnjph. 78.

III.

GREEK AND CHraSTIAN EXEGESIS.

75

were being formed into a new volume of sacred writings,


side

by

side with the old.

It

was

so applied, in the first

instance, not

by the

Apologists, but

by the

Gnostics.
It

It

was detached from the idea of


of the method was
inevitable.

prediction.
secret.

was linked
of Christ

with the idea of knowledge as a

This extension
life

The

earthly

presented as

many

diiiiculties to the first Christian philo-

sophers as the Old Testament had done.


of Christ as the

The conception
of God seemed common human

Wisdom and

the

Power

inconsistent with
life
;

the meanness of a

and that

life

resolved itself into a series of sym-

bolic representations of

superhuman movements, and the

record of

it

was written in hieroglyphs.


of the

When Symeon

took the young child in his arms and said the Nunc
dimittis,

he was a picture

Demiurge who had


of the

learned his

own change

of place

on the coming

Saviour, and

who gave thanks

to the Infinite Depth. ^

The

raising of Jairus' daughter

was a type of Achamoth,

the Eternal Wisdom, the mother of the Demiurge,


the Saviour led

whom

anew to the perception of the light which had forsaken her. Even the passion on the Cross was a
and perplexity
of

setting forth of the anguish and fear

the Eternal Wisdom.^

The method was


teries of irony

at

first

rejected with contumely.


it

Ireneeus and Tertullian bring to bear upon

their bat-

and denunciation.

It

was a blasphemous

invention.

It

was one

of the arts of spiritual wickedness

against which a Christian must wrestle.

But

it

was

deep-seated in the habits of the time


Tertullian
*

and even while

was writing,

it

was establishing a lodgment


* lb. 1. 8. 2.

Treii. 1. 8, 4,

of the Yalentinians.

76

III.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN EXEGESIS.

inside the Christian communities

which

it

has nevei

ceased to hold.

It did so first of all in the great school

of Alexandria, in
ciliation

which

it

had grown up as the recon-

of

Greek philosophy and Hebrew theology.


of the school of Philo were applied to the

The methods
said,

New Testament even more than to


"The
who

the Old.

foxes have holes, but the Son

When Christ of Man hath


is

not where to lay his head," he meant that on the believer


alone,
is

separated from the

rest,

that

from the
have
it

wild beasts of the world, rests the


the kind and gentle Word.^

Head

of the universe,
is

"When he

said to

fed the multitude on five barley-loaves and two fishes,


is

meant that he gave mankind the preparatory training

of the

Law,

for barley, like the

Law, ripens sooner than

wheat, and of philosophy, which had grown, like fishes,


in the

waves of the Gentile world.^

When we
symbol

read of

the anointing of Christ's feet,

we

read of both his teachof divine


it

ing and his passion

for the feet are a

instruction travelling to the ends of the earth, or,

may be,

of the Apostles

who

so travelled,

having received

the fragrant unction of the Holy Ghost ; and the oint-

ment, which
Judas,

is

adulterated

oil, is

a symbol of the traitor

"by whom

the Lord was anointed on the feet,


:

being released from his sojourn in the world

for the

dead are anointed."^

But
gorical

it

may

reasonably be doubted whether the allej^lace

method would have obtained the


if it

which

it

did in the Christian Church

had not served an other

than exegetical purpose.


1

It is clear that after the first


329.
Id.

Clem. Al. Sh-o7n.

1. 3, p.

IL

6. 11, p.

787.

Pccdag.

2. S, p.

76.

III.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN EXEGESIS.

77
\

conflicts

with Judaism had subsided, the Old Testament


of those

formed a great stumbling-block in the way


appro iched Christianity on
its ideal side,

who
it

and viewed
which

by the
seemed
it

light of philosophical conceptions.


its

Its anthroit

pomorphisms,

improbabilities, the sanction

/^

to give to immoralities, the

dark picture which

sometimes presented of both God and the servants of


to

God, seemed

many men

to

be irreconcilable with both

the theology and the ethics of the Gospel.


section of the Christian world rejected
its

An important
authority altoof

gether

it

was the work, not of God, but


:

His

rival,

the god of this world

the contrast between the Old

Testament and the

New

was part

of the larger contrast

between matter and


good.^
scious of

spiiit,

darkness and light, evil and


reject it

Those who did not thus


its difficulties.

were

still

con-

There were many solutions of


that which had been

those difficulties.

Among them was

the Greek solution of analogous difficulties in Homer.

was adopted and elaborated by Origen expressly with an apologetic purpose. He had been trained in current
It

\l^

methods
to

of

Greek

interpretation.

He

is

expressly said
in the

have studied the books of Cornutus.^

He found

hypothesis of a spiritual meaning as complete a vindication of the

Old Testament as Cornutus had found

of the

Greek mythology.
tells

The

difficulties

which men

find,

he

us,

arise
it

from their lack

of the

spiritual sense.
sceptic.

Without
^

he himself would have been a

This was the contention of Marcion, whose influence upon the Christian world was far hirger than is commonly supposed. By far
the best account of him, in both this and Harnack, Dogmengeschichte, ler Th. B. i c.
2

otlier respects, is that of


5.

Euseb.

H.E.

6.

19. 8.

78

III.

GEEEK AND CHRISTIAN EXEGESIS.

"What man of sense," he asks,^ "will suppose? that the first and the second and the third day, and the evening and the morning, existed without a sun and moon and stars ? Who is
husbandman, planted a life, that might be seen and touched, so that one who tasted of the fruit by his bodily lips obtained life ? or, again, that one was partaker of good and evil by eating that which was taken from a tree ? And if God is said to have walked in a garden in the evening, and Adam to have hidden under a tree, I do not suppose that any one
so foolish as to believe that God, like a
it

garden in Eden, and placed in

a tree of

doubts that these things figuratively indicate certain mysteries,


the history being apparently but not literally true

Nay,

the Gospels themselves are filled with the same kind of narratives.

Take, for example, the story of the devil taking Jesus up

show him from thence the kingdoms of them what thoughtful reader would not condemn those who teach that it was with the eye of the body which needs a lofty height that even the near neighbourhood may be seen that Jesus beheld the kingdoms of tlie Persians, and Scythians, and Indians, and Parthians, and the manner in which their rulers were glorified among men ?"
into a high

mountain

to

the world and the glory of

The spirit intended, in all such narratives, on the one hand to reveal mysteries to the wise, on the other hand The whole series to conceal them from the multitude.
of narratives
is

constructed with a purpose, and subordiDifficulties

nated to the exposition of mysteries.


impossibilities

and

were introduced in order to prevent men


to the literal

from being drawn into adherence

meaning.

Sometimes the truth was told by means of a true narrative

which yielded a mystical sense


of

sometimes,

when

no such narrative
In

a true history existed,

one was

invented for the purpose.^


this
^

way, as a rationalizing expedient for solving


1.

Ori^"?n, de prinn'2\

16.

lb.

c.

15.

III.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN EXEGESIS.

70

tiie difficulties

of Old Testament exegesis, the allegorifor itself a place in the Christian

cal

method estabdshed
:

Church

it

largely helped to prevent the Old Testament


:

from being discarded

and the conservation

of the

Old

Testament was the conservation

of allegory, not only for

the Old Testament, but also for the I^ew.

Against the whole tendency of symbolical interpretation there

was more than one form of reaction in both


application

the Greek and the Christian world.


1.

It

was attacked by the Apologists in

its

to
is

Greek mythology.

"With an inconsequence which


it

remarkable, though not singular, they found in


offence.

a
in

weapon of both defence and

They used
it it

it

defence of Christianity, not only because

gave them
solved

the evidence of prediction, but also because

some of the

difficulties

which the Old Testament pre-

sented to philosophical minds.


other hand, in their attack

They used

it,

on the
Alle-

upon Greek

religion.

gories are an after-thought, they said sometimes, a

mere

pious gloss over unseemly fables.^


true,

Even
to be,

if

they were

they said again, and the basis of Greek belief were


its

as
of

good as

interpreters alleged
to

it
it

it

was a work
is

wicked demons
be behind

wrap round

a veil of dishonour-

able fictions.^
to

The myth and the god who


it

supposed
:

vanish together, says Tatian

if

the

myth be true, the gods are worthless demons; if the myth be not true, but only a symbol of the powers of
nature, the godhead

is

gone, for the powers of nature


*

Clement. Recogn. 10. 36.

Clement. Horn.

6.

18,

80

III.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN EXEGESIS.


In a
it

are not gods since they constrain no worship."^

similar way, in the fourth century, Eusebius treats


as a vain attempt of a

younger generation

to explain

away

(QepaTr^a-ai) the

mistakes of their fathers.^

2. It was attacked

by the Greek

philosophers in

its

application to Christianity.

There are some persons,


to find, not a

says Porphyry,^

who being anxious


it,

way

of being rid of the immorality of the

Old Testament, but

an explanation of

have recourse to interpretations


fit

which do not hold together nor


interpret,

the words which they


as a defence of Jewish

which serve not

so

much

doctrines as to bring approbation and credit for their

own.
in

It is a delusive evasion of

your

difficulties, said

eff'ect

Celsus

;*

you

find in

your sacred books narratives


;

which shock your moral sense


rid of the difficulty

you think that you get


to allegory
;

by having recourse

but

you do not:
explanation

in the first place, your scriptures do not


so interpreted
;

admit of being
is

in the second place, the

often

which
it is

it

explains.

more difficult than the The answer of Origen


is

narrative
is

weak:

partly a
if

Tu quoque : Homer
it

worse than Genesis,

and
it

allegory will not explain the latter, neither will


is

the former:

partly that, if there had been no

secret, the

Psalmist would not have said,

"Open thou mine


of

eyes, that I
1

may
ad.

see the

wondrous things

thy law."

Tatian,

Or at.

Gmc.
cf.
1

21.

Euseb. Prcrp. Evcuvj.


p. 2

2. 6, vol. iii. p.

74

Oepa-n-eia

became a tech-

nical term in this sense;

Griifenhan, GescMchte desldass. Philologie

im Alterthum,

vol.

i.

5.

Porphyr. ap. Euseb.


c.

//.

E.

6. 19. 5.

* Origen,

Cds.

4.

4850.

III.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN EXEGESIS.

81

The method had opponents even in Alexandria itself. Origen^ more than once speaks of those who objected to
3.

his

"digging wells below the surface;" and Eusebius


lost

mentions a
entitled

work

of the learned

Kepos of Arsinoe,

"A

Eefutation of the Allegorists."^

But

it

found

its

chief antagonist in the school of interpretation


at the

which arose

end

of the fourth century at Antioch.

The dominant philosophy of Alexandria had been a fusion of Platonism with some elements of both Stoicism and
revived Pythagoreanism
:

that of Antioch

was coming

to

be Aristotelianism.
realistic
:

The one was


and system

idealistic,

the other

the one was a philosophy of dreams and mys:

tery, the other of logic

to the one, Eevela-

tion

was but the earthy foothold from which speculation


infinite space
;

might soar into

to the other,

it

was " a

positive fact given in the light of history."^

Allegorical
literal inter-

interpretation

was the outcome

of the one

pretation of the other.

school, Julius Africanus, of


letter

The precursor of the Antiochene Emmaus, has left behind a


to contain in its
all

which has been said "

two short

pages more true exegesis than


homilies of Origen."^

the commentaries and

was Lucian,
^

a scholar

The chief founder of the school who shares with Origen the honour
3, vol.
ii.

Origen, in Gen. Horn. 13.


178.
7.

p.

94

in Joann. Horn. 10. 13,

vol. iv. p.
2 ^

Euseb. H. E.
Kilin,

24.

Theodor von Mopsuestia und Junilius Africanus aU Exe-

geten, Freib.
^

im

Breisg. 1880, p, 7.
Inferjjref.
iii.

J.

G. Eosenraliller, Hist.

p. 151.

The

letter is printed,

with the other remains of Julius Africanus, in Eouth, Reliquice


vol.
ii.

Sacrce,

82
of being
lifetime,

III.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN EXEGESIS.


founder of Biblical philology, and whose

tlie

which was cut short by martyrdom in 311, just


His
disciples

preceded the great Trinitarian controversies of the Nicene


period.
side
:

came

to be leaders

on the Arian

among them were Eusebius of Nicomedia and Arius The question of exegesis became entangled himself. with the question of orthodoxy. The greatest of Greek
interpreters,

Theodore of Mopsuestia, followed, a hundred


;

years afterwards, in the same path

but in his day also

questions of canons of interpretation were so entangled

with questions of Christology, and the Christology of the

Antiochene school was so completely outvoted at the


great ecclesiastical assemblies

by the Christology

of the

Alexandrian school, that his reputation

for scholarship

has been almost Avholly obscured by the ill-fame of his


leanings towards jS^estorianism.
It has

been one of the

many

results of the controversies into

which the meta-

physical tendencies of the Greeks led the churches of the

fourth and fifth centuries, to postpone almost to

modern

times the acceptance of " the


torical

literal

grammatical and his-

sense" as the true sense of Scripture.

The
its

allegorical

method
its

of interpretation has survived

the circumstances of
opponents.

birth and the gathered forces of

It has filled a large place in the literature

of Christianity.

But by the irony

of history,
it

though

it

grew out

of a

tendency towards rationalism,

has come

in later times to be vested like a saint,

and

to

wear an

aureole round

its

head.

It has

been the chief instrument have con-

by which the dominant

beliefs of every age

III.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN EXEGESIS.


It

83
so long as

structed their strongholds.^


it

was harmless

was

free.

It

was the play

of innocent imagination

on

the surface of great truths.


ritative,

But when

it

became autho-

when
it

the idea prevailed that only that poetical

sense was

true of

moreover

which the majority approved, and when became traditional, so that one generation

was bound

to accept the symbolical interpretations of its


it

predecessors,

became
souls.

at once the slave of

dogmatism

and the tyrant of


tism,
it

Outside

its relation to

dogmabooks

has a history and a value which rather grow than


It has given to literature

diminish with time.


which, though of

little

value for the immediate purpose

of interpretation, are yet

monuments
of life

of noble and inspir-

ing thoughts.
to literature.

It has contributed even

more

to art

than
infi-

The poetry
it.

would have been


it

nitely less rich without

For though without

Dante
Eaf-

might have been

stirred to write,

he would not have


it

written the Divine Comedy ; and though without


faelle
St.

would have painted, he would not have painted the Cecilia and though without it we should have had
;

Gothic cathedrals,

we

should not have had that sublime

symbolism
education.

of their structure

which

is

of itself a religious

It survives because it is based

upon an

ele-

ment

in

human
its

nature which

is

not likely to pass

away

whatever be

value in relation to the literature of the

past, it is at least the expression in relation to the present

that our lives are hedged round

by the unknown,

that

^ See the chapter on "Scripture and its Mystical Interpretation" in lifewman's " Essay on the Development of Christian Doctrine," espe-

cially p.

324 (2nd

ed.),

" It

may

almost be laid

down

as

an historical

v^

fact that the mystical interpretation

and orthodoxy

will stand or full

together."

g2

84
there
is

III.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN EXEGESIS.


and our departure,

a haze about both our birth

and that even the meaner


infinity.

facts of life are linked to

But two modern beliefs militate against ]. The one belief affects all literature,
secular alike.
relative to the past,

it.

religious

and

It is that the thoughts of the past are

and must be interpreted by

it.

glamour of writing has passed away.


no more than a spoken word
in the sense in
;

written

The word is
taken

and a spoken word


it,

is

which the speaker used


it.

at the time at

which he used

There have been writers of enigmasinfi-

and painters of emblems, but they have formed an


nitesimal minority.

There have been those who, as

Cicero says of himself in writing to Atticus, have written


allegorically lest open speech should betray

them; but

such cryptograms have only a temporary and transient


use.

The idea
it is

that ancient literature consists of riddles

which

the business of modern literature to solve,

has passed for ever away.


2.

The other

belief affects specially religious litera-

ture.

It is that the Spirit of


it is

God

has not yet ceased to

speak to men, and that


not only what

important for us to know,


of other days,

He

told the

men

but also

what

He

tells

us now.

Interjoretation is of the present

as well as of the past.

We
it

can believe that there

is

Divine voice, but


died

we

find

hard to believe that


hills.

it

has

away

to

an echo from the Judean

We
we

can
it

believe in religious as in other progress, but

find

hard to believe that that progress was suddenly arrested


fifteen

hundred years ago.

The study

of nature

and the
for roll-

study of history have given us another

maxim

III.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN EXEGESIS.

85

gioTis

conduct and another axiom of religious belief. They


is

apply to that which


of our

divine within us the inmost secret


of that

knowledge and mastery


:

which

is

divine
is

without us
also,

man, the servant and interpreter of nature,


thereby^ the servant

and

is

and interpreter of the

living

Ood.

Lecture IY.

GEEEK AND

CHEISTIAI^ EHETOEIO.

It
its

is

customary to measure

tlic

literature of

an age hy

highest productSj and to measure the literary excel-

lence of one age as compared with that of another

by the

highest products of each of them.

We look,
in our

for example,

upon the Periclean age


at

at Athens, or the

Augustan age
country, as

Eome, or the Elizabethan age

own

higher than the ages respectively of the Ptolemies, the ;" CaBsars, or the early Georges. The former are " golden
the latter, "silver." the point of view

Nor can

it

be doubted that from

of literature in itself, as distinguished


its relation to

from literature in

history or to social
is

life,

such a standard of measurement

correct.

But the

result of its application has been the doing of a certain

kind of injustice to periods of history in which, though


the high- water

mark has been

lower, there has been a

wide diffusion
writer of the
spontaneous.

of literary culture.

This

is

the case with

the period with which


first

we

are dealing.
It

It

produced no
rather than
original.

rank.

was

artificial

It

was imitative more than

It

was

appreciative rather than constructive.


of the

Its literature

was born, not

enthusiasm of free activity, but

rather of the passivity which comes

when

there

is

no

IV.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN RHETORIC.


as to a student of science the after-glow
less

87
is

hope.

But

an object of study no

than the noon-day, so to a

student of the historical development of the world the


silver

age of a nation's literature

is

an object

of

study

no

less

than

its

golden age.
it is

Its

most characteristic feature was one for which


to find
''

difficult

any more exact description than the


a viva-voce literature."
It

paradoxical phrase,

had

its

birth and chief development in that part of the


in

Empire
of the

which Christianity and Greek


contact.
It

life

came

into closest

and most frequent


rhetorical schools

was the product

which have been already described.


and instructing
his students

In

those schools the professor had been in the habit of illustrating his rules

by model

compositions of his own.^


first

Such compositions were in the


of real persons.

instance exercises in the pleading of actual causes,

and accusations or defences

The

cases

were necessarily supposed rather than

actual,

but they

had a practical object in view, and came


ble to real
life.

as close as possi-

The

large growth of the habit of studying

Ehetoric as a part of the education of a gentleman, and the


increased devotion to the literature of the past, which came
partly from the felt loss of spontaneity and partly from
national pride, 2 caused these compositions in the rhetorical
^

I have endeavoured to confine the above account to what


:

is

true

of Greek Rhetoric

the accounts which are found in

Roman

writers,

especially in Quintilian,

some

details.

The

best

though in the main agreeing with it, differ in modern summary of Greek usages is that of

Kayser's Preface to his editions of Phiiostratus (Ziivich, 1844; Leipzig,

1871, vol.
2

ii.).

E. Rohde, der griecMsche

Roman nnd

seine Vorldufer^ Leipzig,

1876, p. 297.

S8
scliools to

IV.

GREEK AXD CHEISTIAX RHErorJC.

take a wider range. ^

They began on the one


fictitious

hand

to

be divorced from even a

connection with

the law-courts, and on the other to be directly imitative of


the styles of ancient authors.

From

the older Ehetoric,

the study of forensic logic and speech with a view to the


actual practice in the law-courts, which necessarily
still

went

on, there

branched out the new Ehetoric, which


specially

was sometimes

known

as Sophistic.

Sophistic proceeded for the


lines.

most part upon the old


name,
the
into

Its literary compositions preserved the old


(^leXeVat),

" exercises"

as

though they were

still

rehearsals of actual pleadings.

They were divided

two kinds, Theses and Hypotheses^ according

as a subject

was argued

in general terms or

names were introduced.


Their subjects were

The

latter

were the more common.


fictitious,

sometimes

sometimes taken from real history.


is

Of the
^

first of
is

these there

a good example in Lucian's


to, Si/caviKoL

There

a distinction between

and ra

a/z^i fieXer-qv,

and both
2.

are distinguished

from ra TroAiriKa in Philostratus, V. S.


" too

20, p. 103.

Elsewhere Philostratus speaks of a sophist as being

SiKaviKov

/lev (ro(f)ia'TiKU)Tepos (TOcfiKrTOv 8e SiKaviKwre/aos,

much

of

a litterateur to be a good lawyer, and too

much

of a lawyer to be a

good
^

litterateur," 2. 23. i, p. 108.


^ecrts
is

defined by

Hermogenes
i.

as a/x^io-ySjjri^/xei'ou irpdyfiaro^
vTrodecris as

CtjTTjcris,
(Ti']Tr]<Tis,

Progi/mn. 11, Walz,


Sext.

p.
3.

50:
4
:

twv

iirl

/lepovi

Em p.

adv.

Gcom.

so ras us ovofia

x'lrodecreis,

Philostr. V. S. prooem.
3. 5. 5,

who

The distinction is best formulated by Quintilian, gives the equivalent Latin terms, " infiuitw (quaistiones)

sunt quae remotis personis et temporibus et locis cajterisque similibus


in

situm
bis

utramque partem tractantur quod Groeci Oea-iv dicunt, Cicero propofinitaj autcm sunt ex complexu rerum personarum temporum
.

cajteroruraque

has vTroOecreis a Grajcis dicuntur, caussaj a nostris, in


circa res pcrsonasque consistere."

omnis qua?stio vidctur

IV.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN RHETORIC.


the situation
is,

89

Tyrannicide
citadel of a

that a

man

goes into the


:

town

for the purpose of killing a tyrant

not the

finding the tyrant, the

man

kills the tyrant's

son

tyrant coming in and seeing his son with the sword in


his body, stabs himself: the

man

claims the reward as a


of subjects, there are

tyrannicide.

Of the second kind

such instances as "Demosthenes defending himself against


brought," ^ and

Demades "The Athenians wounded at Syracuse beg their comrades who are returning to Athens to put them to death." ^ The Homeric cycle was an unfailing mine
:

the charge of having taken the bribe which

of subjects

the Persian wars hardly less

you

like to hear a sensible speech

or are

you

sick of hearing speeches

Would about Agamemnon, about Agamemnon,


so.

"

Atreus' son ?" asks Dio Chrysostom in one of his Dia" I should not take amiss even a speech about logues. ^

Adrastus or Tantalus or Pelops,

if

I were likely to get

good from

it,"

is

the polite reply.

In the treatment
laid

of both kinds of subjects, stress


consistency.

was

on dramatic

The
to

character,

whether real or supposed,


style.*

was required

speak in an appropriate

The

"exercise" had to be recited with an appropriate into1

Philostr.

V.S.

1.

25. 7, 16.

lb. 2. 5. 3. ^
"*

Dio Chrysost.
TT/Doo-wTTOTTotia,
ii.

Ivi. vol.

ii.

p. 176.

fop wliich sGe


:

Theon. Progymnasmata,

c.

10, ed.
viroKpt-

Spengel, vol.
vea-duL

115

Quintil. 3. 8.

49

9. 2. 29.

The word

was sometimes applied, e.g. Philostr. V. S. 1. 21. 5, of Scopewhose action in subjects taken from the Persian wars was so vehement that a partizan of one of his rivals accused him of beating a
lianus,

tambourine.
of Ajax."

" Yes, I do," he said

"but my tambourine

is

the shield

90
nation.^
"by

IV.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN RHETORIC.


effect

Sometimes the dramatic


or

was heightened
for

the introduction of two

more characters:
style,

example, one of the surviving pieces of Dio Chrysostom^


consists of a
diction,

wrangle in tragic

and with tragic

between Odysseus and Philoctetes.


relation to contemporary
is

This kind of Sophistic has an interest in two respects,


apart from
birth to the
its
life.

It

gave

Greek romance, which


sophistical

the progenitor of the


:

media3val romance and of the modern novel

a notable
litera;

example of such a
ture
is

romance in Christian

the Clementine Homilies and Eecognitions

in

non-Christian literature, Philostratus's Life of Apollonius


of Tyana.
It

gave birth also

to the writings in the style

of ancient authors which,

though commonly included in

the collected works of those authors, betray their later


origin

by

either the poverty of their thought or inadver:

tent neologisms of expression


of Plato.4

for example, the

Eryxias

But though
it

Sophistic

had
^

its

roots also in

grew mainly out of Ehetoric, Philosophy. It was sometimes

their voice sweet with musical cadences, and moduand echoed resonances :" Plut. de and. 7, p. 41. So at Eome Favorinus is said to have " charmed even those who did not know Greek by the sound of his voice, and the significance of his look, and the cadence of his sentences :" Philostr. V. S. 1. 7, p. 208.
hations of tone,
2
^

"

They made

Orat. lix.

Eohde, pp. 336 sqq.


This trained habit of composing in different styles
latter is afforded
is

of importance

A good by Arrian, whose " chameleon-like style" (Kaibel, Dionysios von Haliharnass und die Sopliistik, Hermes, Bd. xx. 1875, p. 508) imitates Thucydides, Herodotus, and Xenophon, by
in relation to Christian as well as to non-Christian literature.

study of the

turns.

IV.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN RHETORIC.


It

91
off alto-

defined as Ehetoric philosophizing.^

threw

gether the fiction of a law-court or an assembly, and


discussed
in

continuous speech the larger themes of


Its utterances

morality or theology.

were not " exer-

cises" but " discourses" (^SiaXe^eny^


It created not only a
sion.

It preached sermons.

new literature, but also a new profesThe class of men against whom Plato had inveighed
class of educators

had become merged in the general

they were specialized partly as grammarians, partly as rhetoricians the word " sophist," to which the invectives
:

had

failed to attach a

permanent stigma, remained partly

as a generic name, and partly as a special

name

for the

new

class of public talkers.

sophers in that

They differed from philothey did not mark themselves off from

the rest of the world, and profess their devotion to a

higher standard of living, by wearing a special dress.*

They were a notable

feature of their time.

Some

of

them

had a fixed residence and gave discourses regularly, like


*

Philostratus, V. S. 1. p. 202, rrjv dp^atav

(ro<f)L(rTiKrjV

pr^ropiKrtv

TyyeiCTPat

^P^
a

<j>iXocro(})OV(Tav.

SiaAeyerai

jxev

yap

vjrlp ojv oi </)iAo

<TO(jiOvvTS

Si iKeivot Tus epwrrjcreLS VTroKadi]fJievoL Kal

tu a-puKpa
6

rCiv

^TjToviJLevwv
(TO(^icrTr;s cos

7rpo/3t/3d^ovTes

ovttu)

cjiaa-l

ytyvojcrKetv

ra-ura

TraAaio?

eiSw? Aeyei

ib. p. 4, (TO(f)L(TTa<s 8e

ol TraAaiot f.iTOiv6[xa^ov

ov fiovov Twv prjTopoiv Toris virepcfiWvovvTa.'S re Kal Xa/nrpovs,

aAAa Kal

Twv ^tAocro^cov Tovs ^vv


2

vpoi(^ kpfxrjve'vovTas.

On

the distinction, see Kayser's preface to his editions of Philo-

stratus, p. vii.
8

Philostratus, V. S. 2. 3, p. 245, says that the

famous sophist Aris-

tocles lived the earlier part of his life as a Peripatetic philosopher,


** squalid and unkempt and ill-clothed," but that when he passed into the ranks of the sophists he brushed off his squalor, and brought luxury

and the pleasuies

of

music into his

life.

On

the philosopher's dress,

see below. Lecture VI. p. 151.

92
the
''

IV.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN RHETORIC.

stated minister" of a

modern congregation
to place.

some

of tliem travelled

from place

The audience
There were no
bells

was usually gathered by

invitation.

newspaper advertisements in those days, and no


consequently the invitations were personal.

made sometimes by a "card" or " Come and hear me times by word of mouth
:

They were "programme," somelecture


;

to-day."

Sometimes a messenger was sent round

some-

times the sophist would go round himself and knock at


people's doors and promise

them a

fine discourse.^

The audience
doors.

of a travelling sophist

was what might

be expected among a people

When

a stranger

much out of appeared who was known by


lived very

who

his professional dress,

and whose reputation had preceded

him, the people clustered round him

like iron filings

sticking to a magnet, says Themistius.^

If there was a
;

resident sophist, the two were pitted together


if,

just as

in

modern

times, a

famous

violinist

from Paris or

Vienna might be asked


^

to play at the

next concert with


so Pliny, Eptst. 3. IS

Epictetus, Diss. 3. 21. 6;

3.

23. 6, 23, 28

(of invitations to recitations), "

non per

codicillos (cards of invitation),


'si

non per

libellos

(programmes, probably containing extracts), sed


valde vacaret' adraoniti,"
Cf. Lucian,

commodum

esset,' et 'si

Her-

motimus, 11, where a sophist is represented as hanging up a noticeboard over liis gateway, " No lecture to-day."
'^

Philostratus,

V. S.

2.

10. 5, says that the enthusiasm at

Rome
ttJ?

about the sophist Adrian was such that when his messenger (toC
dKpod<Ti(s)<;

dyyeXov) appeared on the scene with a notice of lecture, the people rose up, whether from the senate or the circus, and flocked to
Synesius, Dio (in Dio Chrys. ed. Dind.
342), speaks of BvpOKoirriaravTa Kal eVayyeiAaj'Ta tois Iv ao-ret

the Athenoaum to hear him.


vol.
ii.

fieipaKtot^ aKpoafia iTTiSt^iov.

Orat. 23, p. 360, cd. Dind.

IV.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN RHETORIC.


It

93

the leading violinist in London.

was a matter not

only of professional honour, but also of obligation.

A
The
but

man

could not refuse.

There

is

a story in Plutarch^

about a sophist named Niger

who found

himself in a

town in Galatia which had a resident


resident

professor.

made

a discourse.

Niger had, unfortunately, a


easily speak
:

fish-bone in his throat

and could not

he had either to speak or to lose his reputation

he spoke,

and an inflammation

set in

which

killed him.

There

is

much

longer story in Philostratus^ of Alexander Peloplato

going to Athens to discourse in a friendly contest with

Herodes Atticus.
theatre in

The audience gathered together in a the Ceramicus, and waited a long time for
:

Herodes to appear

when he
it

did not come, they grew


trick,

angry and thought that

was a

and

insisted on

Alexander coming forward


arrived.

to discourse before

Herodes

And when Herodes

did arrive, Alexander sudtenor, so to speak, instead

denly changed his style


of bass

and

sang
all

Herodes followed him, and there was a


of

charming interchange
said

compliments:
of

"We

sophists,"
of

Alexander,

"are

us only

slices

you,

Herodes."

Sometimes they went


story of one
to

to

show

their skill at one of the

great festivals, such as that of Olympia.

Lucian^

tells

who had plucked

feathers

from many orators

make a wonderful

discourse about Pythagoras.


it

His

object was to gain the glory of delivering

as

an ex-

tempore oration, and he arranged with a confederate that


its

subject should be the subject selected for


1

him by the

De

sanit. proic. 16, p. 131.


2. 5. 3.

F. S.

Fseudolog. 5 sqq.

94
audience.
of

IV.

GEEEK AND CHRISTIAN RHETORIC.


:

But the imposture was too barefaced some the hearers amused themselves by assigning the dif;

ferent passages to their several authors

and the sophist

himself at last joined in the universal laughter.

And
at

Dio Chrysostom^ draws a picture of a public place


to be as true of the time of Diogenes as of his
*'

Corinth during the Isthmian games, which he alleges

own:
they

You might

hear

many poor wretches

of sophists shoutdisciples, as

ing and abusing one another, and their


call

them, squabbling, and

their stupid compositions, and

many writers of books reading many poets singing their

poems, and

many

jugglers exhibiting their marvels, and

many

soothsayers giving the meaning of prodigies, and

ten thousand rhetoricians twisting law-suits, and no small

number

of traders driving their several trades."

Of the manner of the ordinary discourse there are many It was given sometimes in a private house, indications.
sometimes in a theatre, sometimes in a regular lectureroom.

The

professor sometimes entered already robed


it

in his "pulpit-gown," and sometimes put

on in the

presence of his audience.


professorial
chair,

He mounted
seat

the steps to his

and took his

upon

its

ample

cushion.^

He

sometimes began with a preface, some-

times he proceeded at once to his discourse.

gave the choice of a subject to his audience. ^


1

He often He was
eiri

Orat

viii. vol.

i 145.
i)

Epict. Diss. 3. 23. 35, Iv KOfi\p(^ otoAio)


:

rptPwvUo dvafSdvTa

ttovXISlvov
incipit," as
'=

but Pliny,

JEj^ist. 2. 3. 2,

says of Isceus, "surgit, amicitur,

though

lie

robed himself in the presence of the audience.


'
:

Pliny, Ejiist. 2. 3, says of Isaeus


:

prrefationes tersEe, graciles,


eleciS.

Juices

graves interdum ct erectae.

Poscit controvevsias plures,

tionem auditoribus permittit, scepe etiam partes."

Philostratus, V.

IV.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN RHETORIC.


;

95
his

ready to discourse on any theme


subject as to bring

and

it

was part of

art either to force the choice of a subject, or so to turn

the

in something

which he had
says

abeady prepared.
to say

" His

memory

is

incredible,"

Pliny of Isoeus; "he repeats by heart what he appears

extempore

but he does not

falter

even in a single

word."^

"When

your audience have chosen a subject

for you," says Luciau,- in effect, in his satirical advice to

rhetoricians, " go straight at

it

and say without

hesita-

tion whatever

words come

to

your tongue, never minding


first

about the
the

first

point coming
is

and the second second Athens about adultery,


:

great thing
If

to

go right on and not have any

pauses.

you have

to talk at

bring in the customs of the Hindoos and Persians


all,

above

have passages about Marathon and Cynsegirus


indispensable.

that

is

And Athos must

always be turned

into sea,

and the Hellespont into dry land, and the and

sun must be darkened by the clouds of Median arrows

.... and Salamis and Artemisium and


1.

Platcea,

so

24. 4, tells a story of

ture-room and sitting

him, and the

Mark of Byzantium going into Poleino's lecdown among the audience some one recognized whisper went round who he was, so that, when Polemo
:

asked for a subject,


shaggy beard
"

all

eyes were turned to Mark.

"

What

is

the use

of looking at a rustic like that?"


;

said Polemo, referring to Mark's

lie

Avill

not give you a subject."

" I will both give


Plutarch,

you a

subject," said
7, p.

Mark, "and

will discourse myself."

de audiendo,

42, advises those

who go

to a "feast of

words"

to

propose a subject that will be useful, and not to ask for a discourse on
the bisection of unlimited lines.
1 Plin. Epist. 2. 3. His disciple 4 ; cf. Philostr. V. S. 1. 20. 2. Dionysius of Miletus had so wonderful a memory, and so taught his

pupils to remember, as to be suspected of sorcery

Philostr. V. S. 1.

Mhet. prcec. 18,

96
forth,

IV.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN RHETORIC.


in pretty frequently
;

must come
little

and, above

all,

those

Attic words I told you about must blossom

on the surface of your speech


{depoiitJien)

drra (aita) and


freely,

S/j-rrovOeu

must

be sprinkled about
:

whether
even

they are wanted or not

for they are pretty words,

when they do not mean anything."


It

was a disappointment

if

he was not interrupted


a serious-looking audi-

by

applause.

"A

sophist

is

put out in an extempore


" They are

speech," says Philostratus,^

"by

ence and tardy praise and no clapping." agape," says Dio Chrysostom,^ " for the

all

murmur

of the

crowd ....

like

men walking

in the dark, they

move

always in the direction of the clapping and the shouting."


" I want your praise," said one of

them

to Epictetus.^

"What
sopher.

do you " Oh, I want you to say Bravo

mean by my

praise?" asked the philo!

and Wondercries

ful I" replied the sophist.

These were the common

others were not

infrequent "Divine!"

"Inspired!"
clap-

"Unapproachable !"^

They were accompanied by

ping of the hands and stamping of the feet and waving


of the arms.

" If your friends see you breaking down," says Lucian in his satirical advice to a rhetorician,^ " let
price of the suppers

them pay the

you give them by

stretching out their arms and giving

you a chance
p.

of

V. S.

2. 26. 3.
3.

Oral, xxxiii. vol.

i.

422.

3
"^

Epict. Diss.

23. 24.

Plut. de cmdiendo, 15, p. 4G, speaks of the strange

and extravagant
^eo</)op7;Tajs'

words
'

which had thus come into


the old WOrds,
Toij
'

use,

^ttws

koI

Ka\

aTrpoa-tTWS^

KaAws

Kal

toC

'

o-o</)(2i

Kal tou

'dXi]9ios' being
^

no longer strong enough.


21.

Ehci.

pmc.

IV.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN RHETORIC.


to say in the interval

97

tMnking of something
rounds of applause."
signs of disapproval.

between the

Sometimes, of course, there were


''

It is the

mark

of a

good hearer,"

says Plutarch, 1 " that he does not howl out like a dog

which he disapproves, but at any rate waits until the end of the discourse."
at everything of

After the discourse, the professor would go round:

"'What

did you think of


"
' '

me to-day?'"
sir,

says one in

Epictetus.^

Upon my

life,

I thought

you were

admirable.'

What
it

did you thinli of

my

best passage

'Which was
Nymphs.'
'

that?'

'Where

I described

Pan and

the

Oh,

was excessively well done.' "


I think,'

Again,

to quote another anecdote from Epictetus:^ " 'A

much

larger audience to-day,

says

the professor.

'Yes; much
*

larger.'
;

'Five hundred, I should guess.'

Oh, nonsense
'

it

could not have been less than a thouis

sand.'

Why that
:

more than Dio ever had


said, too.'

I
'

wonder
Beauty,

why it was
sir,

they appreciated what I

can move even a stone.'


reputation.

They made both money and


of the time.

The more

eminent of them were among the most distinguished

men

They were the pets of society, and sometimes its masters.^ They were employed on affairs of state at home and on embassies abroad.^ They were
1

De

audlendo,

4, p. 39.

j)iss, 3. 23. 11.

Diss. 3. 23. 19.


'

^ Tvpavi/et

ye twi'

K.9i]vQ)v,

says Eunapius of the sophist Julian,

Vit. Julian, p, 68.


^

Philostr. V. S.

1.

21. 6, of Scopelianus, /Jacr/Actoi 8e avTov irpeaTV>^7^

jSiiai
ih. 1.

TToAAat

fxiv,

Kal yap tls kuI uyaOrj


of

^vvrjKoXovdei Trpecr/SivovTi:

24. 2, of

Mark

Byzantium

1.

25. 1, 5, of

Polemo

2. 5. 2, of

Alexander Peloplaton.

98

IV.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN RHETORIC.


list

sometimes placed on the free


at the

of their city,

and lived
Lords
they

public

expense.
as

They were sometimes made


say, to the Ilouse of

senators

raised,

we might

and
died,

sometimes governors of provinces.^

When

and sometimes before their death, public statues

were erected in their honour.^

The

inscriptions of

some

of them are recorded by historians, and some remain:


''

The Queen

of Cities to the

Xing

of

Eloquence," was
"

inscribed on the statue of Proheeresius at Eome.^


of the

One

Seven Wise Men, though he had not


is

fulfilled

twenty-five years,"

inscribed on an existing base of

a statue at Attaleia ;^

and, beneath a representation of

Philostr, V. S. 1. 22, of Dionysius of Miletus, 'ASptavos o-aTpdirrjv

fjLiv

auTov

arreifyqvev

ovk ac^avwv

Wvmv

lyKareAe^e Se rots
:

SrjfjLoarta

nnrev

ovari
2

Kal toiS v tQ Movcjctw criTov/xevots

so of Polemo, ib. 1. 25. 3.

The

inscription of one of the statues


1.

which are mentioned by

Pliilostratus, V. S.

23,

2, as

having been erected to Lollianus at


:

Athens, was found a few years ago near the Propyhx?a Dittenberger, F. i. 210, see also Welcker, Rheln. 3Iu^. C. I. A. vol. iii. No. G25
:

and a monograph by Kayser, P. Hordeonius Lollianus, Heidelberg, It is followed by the epigram 1841.
:

djxcfyoTepov prjrrjpa BlkCJv fJL\iTr]<Ti

t apicrrov

AoXAiavov
t 8'

TrArj^vs euyevewv erapcov.


eicrt Sary/tevai

c^fAfts TtVes

ovvofia TrarpoS

Kal TraTprj^, avrQv T ovvo/JLa 8l(tkos X^''


Philostratus, V. S.
1.

25. 26, discredits the story that to

Polemo died
;

at

Smyrna, because there was no monument


liad died there, " not

him

there

whereas

if

he

one of the wonderful temples of that city would


for his burial."

have been thought too great


*
rj

(SaxrtXfvova-a 'Pw/x^ toi' /Saa-cXtvovTa

tQv Aoywv, Eunap.

Vit.

Pruhceres. p. 90.
*

MoSeo-Tos

cro(fii(TTr]s

(U

fiera

twv

cirra (ro<f)wv

/xt)

yefiicras iKoari

vivre ht), Bulletin de correspondence Hellenique, 1886, p. 157.

IV.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN RHETORIC.

99

crowning, the words,

"He

subjects all things to elo-

quence," are found on a similar base at Parion.^

They naturally sometimes gave themselves great


There are many
stories

airs.

about them.

Philostratus tells

one of the Emperor Antoninus Pius on arriving at Smyrna


going, in accordance with imperial custom, to spend the

night at the house which was at once the best house


in the city

and the house of the most distinguished


of the sophist

man.

It

was that

Polemo,

who happened
;

on the Emperor's arrival to be away from home

but he

returned from his journey at night, and with loud excla-

mations against being kept out of his own, turned the

aXat^wu

Emperor out of doors.^ The common epithet for them is a word with no precise English equivalent, de-

noting a cross between a braggart and a mountebank.

But the
jected to

objected to

grounds on which the more earnest men them were those upon which Plato had obtheir predecessors their making a trade of
real
:

knowledge, and their unreality.


1.

The making

of discourses,

whether literary or moral,

was a thriving

trade.^

The

fees given to a leading sophist

were on the scale of those given to a prima donna in our


^

OS TravTtt Aoyois vTrordcra-ei, Mittheilungen des deutsches archcBol.

Institut, 1884, p. 61.


^

Philostratus,

V. S.

1.

25. 3, p.

228, narrates the incident with

graphic humour, and adds two anecdotes which

was rather amused than annoyed by it. It was that " he used to talk to cities as a superior, and to gods as an equal," ibid. 4.
'

said of the

show that the Emperor same sophist

to kings as not inferior,

Dio

Cassius, 71. 35. 2, iraixTrX-qBeis <^tA.o(ro<^tv en-AarTovTO

'iv

vtv

avTov TrXovTi^iDVTai.

h2

100

IV.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN RHETORIC.


the objection to
it

own

clay.^

But

was not

so mucli the
all.

fact of its thriving, as the fact of its

being a trade at

"If they do what they do," says Dio Chrysostom,^ "as


poets and rhetoricians, there
if

is

no harm perhaps

but

they do

it

as philosophers, for the sake of their

own

personal gain and glory, and not for the sake of benefiting

you, there

is

harm."
is

makes

for

himseK

The defence which Themistius"^ more candid than effective " I do


:

me sometimes one much as a talent: but, since I must speak about myself, let me ask you Did any one ever come away the worse for having this heard me ? Mark, I charge nothing it is a voluntary
make money," he
says; "people give
mina, sometimes two, sometimes as

contribution."

The stronger ground of objection to them was their unreality. They had lost touch with life. They had made philosophy itself seem unreal. " They are not
2.

philosophers,

but fiddlers," said the sturdy old Stoic


It is not necessary to suppose that they

Musonius.^

were

all charlatans.

There was then, as now, the


of

irre-

pressible

young man

good morals who wished to

air

his opinions.

But the tendency to moralize had become They preached, not because divorced from practice.
1

For example, the father of Herodes Atticus gave Scopelianus a


Philostr. V.S.
1.

fee

of twenty-five talents, to which Atticus himself added another twentyfive:


"

21. 7, p. 222.
p.

Dio Chrysost. Omt. xxxii.


8,

403

so Seneca, Episf. 29, says of

them, " philosophiam honestius neglexissent (^uam vendunt:"


of Tyre, Diss. 33.
3

Maximus

dyopa

TrpoK-etrat dpeTrjs, u)Vlov


is

to Trpdyixa.

Orat. xxiii. p. 351.

The whole speech

a plea against the dis-

repute into which the profession had fallen.


4

aj).

Aul. Gell. 5.

1. 1.

IV.

GEEEK AND CHRISTIAN RHETORIC.

101

they were in grim earnest about the reformation of the


world, but because jDreaching was a respectable profession, sion.

and the listening

to

sermons a fashionable diver-

"The mass
;

of

men," says Plutarch,^

"enjoy

and admire a philosopher


their neighbours

when he

is

discoursing about

but

if

the philosopher, leaving their

neighbours alone, speaks his mind about things that are


of

importance to the
;

men

themselves, they take offence

and vote him a bore


bland

for they think that they ought to

listen to a philosopher in his lecture-room in the

same
in

way

that they listen to tragedians in the theatre.


is

This, as

might be expected,

what happens

to

them

regard to the sophists; for

when

a sophist gets

down

from his pulpit and puts aside his MSS., in the


ness of
life

real busi-

he seems but a small man, and under the

thumb
and
of

of the majority.

They do not understand about


all

real

philosophers that both seriousness and play, grim looks


smiles,

and above

the direct personal application

what they say

to each individual,

have a useful result

for those

who

are in the habit of giving a patient atten-

tion to them."

Against this whole system of veneering rhetoric with


philosophy, there was a strong reaction.
early Christian writers, with

Apart from the


is

whom
at

" sophist"

always
the
its

word

of scorn, there were men, especially

among

new

school of Stoics,

who were
you

open war with

unreality.2
^

I will ask
p. 43.

to listen to the expostulation

De
It

audiendo, 12,
is

'

clear that the

as in both earlier

and

later times,

word "sophist" had under the Early Empire, two separate streams of meaning. It

102

IV.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN RHETORIC.


to a

which the great moral reformer Epictetus addresses


rhetorician

who came
For

to

him
to
1)0,

" First of all, tell yourself

accordingly.
cases.

this is

what you want what we see done

and then act

in almost all other

games first of all decide and then proceed to do the things that follow from their decision So then when you say, Come and listen to my lecture, first of all consider whether your action be not thrown away for want of an end, and then consider whether it be not a mistake, on account of your real end being a wrong one. Suppose I ask a man, Do you wish
are practising for the
to
be,

Men who

wdiat they

mean

'

Thereto do good by your expounding, or to gain applause?' upon straightway you hear him saying, What do I care for the
'

applause of the multitude


the same way, applause
is

?'

And

his sentiment is right

for in

nothing to the musician


" in

(lud musician,

or to the geometrician qud geometrician.


"

You wish
?

to

do good, then," I continue


I too

what particular

respect

tell

me, that

may

hasten to your lecture-room.

was used

as a title of honour, e.g. Lucian, Bhef.


(To<jiL(TT-i'j<i
;

Pmc.

1,

ru a-e/JLvoTarov
2.

TovTo Kal TrdvTLiioy ovofia


yEliau was addressed as
ouTO) jieyaXov ovtos
',

Philostr. V. S.

31. 1,

when

(To<^i(TTi'j<i,

he was not elated


Lihan.
p. 100,

vtto

tov dvo/iaros
olfered

Eunap.

Vit.

when emperors
cfi-ja-as

Libanius great

titles

and

dignities,

he refused them,

tov o-o^wtt^v the word Dio Chrys.


i.

But the disparagement of the c?i/at fid^ova. was applied runs through a large number of
Orat.
iv. vol.
i.

class to

whom
e. g.

writers,
;

70, ayi^ooGvTt koI dAa^oi't o-o^itTTy

ih. viii. vol.

151,

they croak like frogs in a marsh; ib. x. vol, i. 166, they are the wretchedest of men, because, though ignorant, they think themselves wise; ib. xii. vol. i. 214, they are like peacocks, showing off their
reputation and the
Epict. Diss.
2.

20. 23

number of their disciples M. Aurel. 1. 16 6.


;

as

peacocks do their

tails.

30.

Lucian, Ftnjitu: 10,


/xecrf^o

compares them to hippocentaurs, a-vvd^Tov


{oretas Kal
cf)LXo(To<j>ia<;

rt koL ixlktov V

dXa-

TrXa^ofitvov.

^laximus Tyr. Diss. 33.

8,

to twv
fxecrrbv

croe^tcTTwv yevos, to TroXvfiaOes

tovto Kal TroAvAdyoi' Kat ttoAAw;/


dTre/xTroXovv Tois Seo/xei/ots.

fiaO-qixaTwv, Kair-qXivov

TauTa Kal

Among

the Christian Fathers, especial reference

may be made

to

Clem. Alex.

Strom.

1,

chapters 3 and

8,

pp. 328, 3i3.

IV.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN RHETORIC.

103

But can a man impart good


received good himself ?
"

to others without having previously

No

just as a
is

man

is

of no use to us in the

way

of carpen-

tering unless he
"

himself a carpenter.

Would you

like to

know, then, whether you have received

good yourself ? Bring me your convictions, philosopher. (Let us take an example.) Did you not the other day praise so-andDid you not so more than you really thought he deserved ? and yet you would not like your flatter that senator's son ?

own
"
"

sons to

be like him,

would you

God forbid Then why did you

flatter

him and toady

to

him

"
""

He

is

a clever young fellow, and a good student.

How
Yes
;

do you know that

" He admires
"

my

lectures.

that

is

the real reason.

But

don't

you think that these


?

very people despise you in their secret hearts


when a
that he

mean
tells

that

man who
is

is

conscious that he has neither done nor

thought any single good thing, finds a philosopher who


a

him

man

of great ability, sincerity,

and genuineness, of
to get

course he says to himself, 'This

man wants

something out
tell

of

me

!'

Or

(if this is

not the case with vou),

me what

proof he has given of great ability.

No

doubt he has attended

you

for a considerable
:

expounding
himself
" "

time he has heard you discoursing and but has he become more modest in his estimate of
:

or

is

he

still

looking for some one to teach

him

Yes, he

is

looking for some one to teach him.


to live
?

To teach him how


:

No, fool
*
:

not

how
*

to live, but

liow to talk
"

which
*
is,

also is the reason

why he

admires you.

you like applause you care more for that than and so you invite people to come and hear you.] for doing good, " But does a pJiilosopher invite people to come and hear him ?
[The truth
Is
it

not that as the sun, or as food,

is its

own

sufficient attrac-

tion, so the philosopher also is his

those

who

are to be benefited
let

own sufficient attraction to by him ? Does a physician invite


.
.

people to come and

him heal them ?

(Imagine what a

104

IV.

GREEK AXD CHRISTIAN EnETORIC.

genuine philosopher's invitation would be)

invite you to you are in a bad way that you care for everything except what you should care for that you do not know what things are good and what evil and that you are unhappy and unfortunate.' A nice invitation and yet if that is not the result of what a philosopher says, he and his words alike (Musonius) Eufus used to say, If you have leisure are dead. Accordingly he to praise me, my teaching has been in vain.'

'I

come and be

told that

'

used to talk in such a way that each individual one of us


sat there thought that

who

him
"

he so put his

some one had been telling Eufus about finger upon what we had done, he so set
is

the individual faults of each one of us clearly before our eyes.

The philosopher's lecture-room, gentlemen,


to

a surgery

when you go away you ought


For wdien you come
headache.
in,

have
is

felt

not pleasure but pain.


:

something

wrong with you


aljscess,

one

man

has put his shoulder out, another has an

another a
give you

Am

the surgeon then,

to sit

down and

a string of fine sentences, that you

may

praise

go away

the

abscess, the
for this that

man with the dislocated arm, man with the headache ^just as you came ? young men come away from home, and leave
'

me and then tlie man with the


Is it

their

parents and their kinsmen and their property, to say


to

you

for

your

fine

moral conclusions
?

Is this

Bravo T what Socrates

did

or Zeno or Cleanthes
Who
denies
it
?

" Well, but is there


"

no such

class of speeches as exhortations ?

But

in

what do exhortations

consist

In,

being able to show, whether to one


are given to anything but

man

or to

many men,

the

contradiction in which they are involved, and that their thoughts

what they

really mean.

For they

mean

to give

them

to the things that really tend to happiness

but they look for those things elsewhere than where they really (That is the true aim of exhortation) but to show this, is are.
:

it

necessary to place a thousand chairs, and invite people to


listen,

come and
the pulpit

and dress yourself up in a

fine
?

and describe the death of Achilles

gown, and ascend Cease, I implore

you, from bringing dishonour, as far as you can,

upon noble

words and deeds.

There can be no stronger exhortation to duty,

IV.

GEEEK AND CHRISTIAN RHETORIC.


make
it

103

I suppose, than for a speaker to

clear to his audience


!

them Tell me who, after hearing you lecture or discourse, became anxious about or reflected upon himself? or who, as he went out of the room, I must not said, The philosopher put his finger upon my faults
that he wants to get something out of
' :

behave in that way again'


"

You

cannot
'

the utmost praise

you get

is

when

man

says

to another,

other says,
pylse/

'

That was a beautiful passage about Xerxes,' and the No, I liked best that about the battle of Thermo-

" This is a philosopher's

sermon

!"^

I have dwelt on this feature of

tlie

Greek

life

of the

early Christian centuries, not with the view of giving a

complete picture of

it,

which would be impossible within which you


it

the compass of a lecture, but rather with the view of


establishing a presumption,
justified

will find

amply
not mass^

by further

researches, that

was

sufficient,
its

only in

its

quality and complexity, but also in

to account for certain features of early Christianity.

In passing from Greek


you, in the
first

life to Christianity,

I will ask

instance, to note the broad distinction

which

exists

between what in the primitive churches was

known
stress

as "prophesying,"

and that which in subsequent


I lay the

times came to be

known

as " preaching."

more

upon the

distinction for the accidental reason that,

in the first reaction against the idea that


necessarily

"prophecy"

meant "prediction,"

with a certain
a "prophet"

and reservation the contention was true that


it

was maintained

meant a "preacher."

that the prophet

The reservation is, was not merely a preacher but a spon1

Epict. Diss. 3. 23.

lOG

IV.

GREEK AND CHKISTIAN RHETORIC.

taneoiis preacher.

He

preached because he could not

help

it,

because there was a divine breath breathing


It is

within him which must needs find an utterance.

in this sense that the prophets of the early churches were

They were not church officers appointed to They were the possessors discharge certain functions. of a charisma^ a divine gift which was not official but personal. "No prophecy ever came by the will of man; but men spake from God, being moved by the Holy Ohost." They did not practise beforehand how or what they should say; for "the Holy Ghost taught them in Their language that very hour what they should say." was often, from the point of view of the rhetoiical schools, a barbarous patois. They were ignorant of the rules both of style and of dialectic. They paid no heed to refinements of expression. The greatest preacher of them all claimed to have come among his converts, in a city
23reachers.

in which Ehetoric flourished, not with the persuasiveness of

human

logic,

but with the demonstration which was

aff'orded

by

spiritual power.

Of that "prophesying"
not certain that

of the primitive churches

it is

we

possess any

monument.

The Second

Epistle of Peter and the Epistle of Jude are perhaps


representatives of

among the canonical books of the New Testament. The work known as the Second Epistle
it

of Clement
it

is

perhaps a representative of the form which


;

took in the middle of the second century


inspired

but though
rather more
is

it is

by a genuine enthusiasm,

it is

artistic in its

form than a purely prophetic utterance

likely to

have been.
of the second century, this original spon-

In the course

IV.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN RHETORIC.


It

107

taneity of ?itteraiice died almost entirely away.

may

almost be said to have died a violent death.

nant parties in the Church


survivals of
it

set their faces

The domiagainst it. The


tried to fan

in Asia

Minor were formally condemned.


were
called,

The Montanists,
heretics.

as they
it

who

the lingering sparks of

into a flame, are


is

ranked among

And

Tertullian

not even

the calendar of the Saints, because


tanists to

now admitted into be believed the Monso.

be in the

right.
it

It

was

inevitable that

should be

The growth
Such a
it,

of a confederation of Christian communities necessitated

the definition of a basis of confederation.


nition,

defi-

and the further necessity

of

guarding

were

inconsistent with that free utterance of the Spirit

which

had existed before the confederation began.


ing died

Prophesy-

when

the Catholic Church was formed.

In place of prophesying came preaching.


ing
is

And

preach-

the result of the gradual combination of

difi'erent
it

elements.
is

In the formation

of a great institution

inevitable that, as time goes on,

different elements

should tend to unite.

To the

original functions of a

bishop, for example, were added


tions

by degrees the func-

which

had originally been separate

of

teacher.^

In a similar way were fused together, on the one hand,


teaching

that

is,

the tradition and exposition of the

The

functions are clearly separable in the Teaching of the Apostles,


[sc. iTTLCTKOTrot
'Kpo<f>y]Tojv

1j, avTOi

Ktti

StctKovoiJ
;

ydp

elaiv ol Tert/xi^/xevot vjimv

fxra Twv

Kal StSao-KaAwv

but they are combined in the

second book of the Apostolical Constitutions, pp. 16, 49, 51, 58, 84,
ed. La^arde.

108

IV.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN RHETORIC.


;

sacred books and of the received doctrine


other hand, exhortation

and, on the

that

is,

the endeavour to raise


spiritual life.

men

to a higher level of moral

and

Each

of these

was a function which, assuming a

certain natural

by practice. Each of them was consequently a function which might be discharged by the permanent officers of the community, and disaptitude, could be learned

charged habitually at regular intervals without waiting


for the fitful flashes of the prophetic fire.

We

conse-

quently find that with the growth of organization there

grew up
tation,

also,

not only a fusion of teaching and exhor-

but also the gradual restriction of the liberty of


official class.

addressing the community to the


It

was

this fusion of teaching

and exhortation that


:

constituted the essence of the homily

its

form came

from the sophists. For

it

was natural that when addresses,


to prevail in

whether expository or hortatory, came

the

Christian communities, they should be afiected by the


similar addresses

which
It

filled

a large place in contempo-

was not only natural but inevitable that when men who had been trained in rhetorical methods
rary Greek
life.

came

to

make such
to
is

addresses, they should follow the


It is probable

methods

which they were accustomed.

that Origen

not only the earliest example whose writ-

ings have come

down

to us, but also one of the earliest

who
seem

took into the Christian communities these methods

of the schools.
to

He lectured,

as the contemporary teachers

have lectured, every day: his subject-matter


of the Scriptures, as that of the rhetoricians
:

M as the text

and sophists by his side was Homer or Chrysippus

his

IV.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN RHETORIC.


were

109
carefully-

addresses, like those of the best professors,

prepared

he was sixty years of age, we are


the Christian

told, before

he preached an extempore sermon.^

When

communities emerge into the

clearer light of the fourth century, the influence of the


rhetorical schools

upon them begins

to be visible

on a

large scale

and with permanent

effects.

The

voice of the

prophet had ceased, and the voice of the preacher had

begun.

The

greatest Christian preachers of the fourth

century had been trained to rhetorical methods, and had


themselves taught rhetoric.
Basil and Gregory
IS'azi-

anzen studied at Athens under the famous professors

Himerius and Prohoeresius


the
still

Chrysostom studied under

said of
cessor

more famous Libanius, who on his death-bed him that he would have been his worthiest sucthe Christians had not stolen him."^

''if

The

discourses
of the

came

to

be called by the same names as those

Greek

professors.

They had

originally been called


this sense in

homilies

a word which
and
to

was unknown in

pre-Christian times, and which denoted the familiar intercourse


direct personal addresses of

common

life.

They came
schools

be called by the technical terms of the

discourses, disputations, or speeches.^


of

tinction

between the two kinds

terms

is

The disclearly shown

by a
1

later writer,
6.

who, speaking of a particular volume of


36. 1.
6. 2

Euseb. H. E.

Sozom. H. E.

8. 2.

Eusebius, H. E.

36. 1, speaks of Origen's

sermons as SiaAe^ets,

whereas the original designation was 6/iiAtai. So in Latin, Augustine uses the term disputationes of Ambrose's sermons, Confess. 5. 13, vol. i.
118, and of his
jiars 2, p.

own

Tract. Ixxxix. in Jolxann. Evang.

c.

5, vol. iiu

719.

110

IV.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN RHETORIC.

Chrysostom's addresses, says, " They are called 'speeches'


(Xo'yoi),

but they are more like homilies, for this reason,

above others, that he again and again addresses his hearers


as actually present before his eyes."^

The form

of the

discourses tended to be the


side a discourse of

same

if

you examine

side

by

Himerius or Themistius or Libanius,

and one of Basil or Chrysostom or Ambrose, you will


find a similar artificiality of structure,

and a similar

They were delivered under analogous circumstances. The preacher sat in his official chair it was an exceptional thing for him to ascend the reader's ambo, the modern "pulpit:"^ the audience
elaboration of phraseology.
:

crowded in front

of him,

and frequently interrupted him

with shouts of acclamation.


to

The

greater preachers tried

stem the tide of applause which surged round them

again and again Chrysostom begs his hearers to be silent

what he wants

is,

not their acclamations, but the fruits of

his preaching in their lives. ^

There

is

one passage which


afi'ords

not only illustrates this point, but also

a singular

analogy to the remonstrance of Epictetus which was

quoted just
1 2

now

Phot. Bihlioth. 172.

Sozomen. H.E. 8. 5. Augustine makes a fine point of the analogy between the church and the lecture-room (schola) " tanquam vobis Tanquam pastores sumus, sed sub illo Pastore vobiscum oves sumus.
:

vobis ex hoc loco doctores

sumus sed sub


:"

illo

Magistro in hac schola


vol. iv.

vobiscum condiscipuli sumus


ed.
^

Enarrat. in Psalm, cxxvi.

1429,

Ben.

Adv. Jud.
i.

7.

6, vol.

i.

671

Cojic. vii.

adv. eos qui


c. 4,

ad

lud. circ.
eos

790; Horn. ii. ad pop. Antioch. qui ad Colled, nan occur, vol. iii. 157; Horn.
prof. vol.
Aol. iv.

vol.

ii.

25; adv.

liv.

in cap. xxvii. Genes.


iv.

523; Horn.

Ivi.

in cap. xxix. Genes, vol.

541.

IV.
" There are

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN RHETORIC.

Ill
:

many

preachers

who make

long sermons
if

if

they

are well applauded, they are as glad as

they had obtained a


hell.

kingdom

if

they bring their sermon to an end in silence, their


is

despondency

worse, I

may

almost say, than

It is this

sermons that touch the heart, but sermons that will delight your ears with their intonation and the structure of their phrases, just as if you
that ruins churches, that
to hear

you do not seek

And we preachers humour your fancies, instead of trying to crush them. We act like a father who gives a sick child a cake or an ice, or somewere listening to singers and lute-players.
thing else that
it
;

just because he asks for is merely nice to eat and takes no pains to give him what is good for him and then when the doctors blame him says, I could not bear to hear That is what we do when we elaborate beautiful my child cry.' sentences, fine combinations and harmonies, to please and not to profit, to be admired and not to instruct, to delight and not to
;

'

touch you, to go away with your applause in our


better your conduct.

ears,

and not
as

to
:

Believe me, I

am

not speaking at random

when you applaud me


natural for a

as I speak, I feel at the

moment
it.

it is

man
?

to feel.

I will

make a

clean breast of

Why
when

should I not
I go

am

delighted and overjoyed.

And

then

people who have been applauding and indeed that whatever benefit they might have had has been killed by the applause and praises, I am sore at heart, and I lament and fall to tears, and I feel as though I had spoken altogether in vain, and I say to myself. What is the good of all your labours, seeing that your hearers don't want to reap any fruit out of all that you say ? And I have

home and

reflect that the

me

have received no

benefit,

often thought of laying

down a

rule absolutely prohibiting all

applause,

and urging you


is

to listen in silence."^

And

there

a passage near the end of Gregory Nazi-

anzen's greatest sermon, in which the

human

nature of

which Chrysostom speaks bursts forth with striking


force:
*

after the
S. Chrys.

famous peroration in which


c.

after bid238.

Horn, xxx. in Act, Apost.

3, vol. ix.

112

IV.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN RHETORIC.


cliurcli

ding farewell one by one to the

and congregation

which he loved,

to the several

companies of his fellowto

workers, and to the multitudes

who had thronged

hear

him preach, he turns


Arian courtiers
" Farewell, princes

to the court and his opponents the

and

whether ye be
all

palaces, the royal court

and household
ye are nearly

faithful to the king I

know

not,

you unfaithful to God." (There was evidenMy a burst of applause, and he interrupts his peroration with an impromptu clap your hands, shout aloud, exalt your orator address.) " Yes to heaven your malicious and chattering tongue has ceased it
of

will not cease for long

it

will fight (though I

am

absent) with

writing and ink


the peroration
city
"1

but just for the moment we are


resumed.)
" Farewell,

silent."

(Then

is

great and Christian

I will add only one

more instance

of the
into

way

in

which

the habits
churches.

of the

sophists flowed

the Christian

Christian preachers, like the soj)hists, were


;

sometimes peripatetic

they went from place to place,

delivering their orations and

making money by delivering


and Sozomen^
tell

them.

The

historians Socrates

an

in-

structive story of two Syrian bishops, Severianus of Gabala

and Antiochus

of Ptolemais (St.

Jean d'Acre). They were


Antiochus went

both famous for their rhetoric, though Severianus could


not quite get rid of his Syrian accent.
to Constantinople,

and stayed there a long time, preach-

ing frequently in the churches, and making a good deal


of

money

thereby.

On

his return to Syria, Severianus,

hearing about the money, resolved to follow his example

he waited for some time, exercised his rhetoric, got together a large stock of sermons, and thou
*

went

to Constan-

Greg. Naz, Oral.

xlii.

Socrates,

H.E.

6.

11; Sozomen,

H.E.

8. 10.

IV.

GEEEK AND CHRISTIAN RHETORIC.

113

tinople. He was kindly received by the bishop, and soon became both a great popular preacher and a favourite at The fate of many preachers and court favourites court.

overtook him

he excited great jealousy, was accused


;

of heresy and banished from the city

and only by the

personal intercession of the Empress Eudoxia was he

received back again into ecclesiastical favour.

Such are some of the indications of the influence

of

Greek Ehetoric upon the early churches.


Christian sermon.
officers

It created the

It

added
is

to the functions of

church

a function which

neither that of the exercise

of discipline, nor of administration of the funds, nor


of taking the lead in public worship, nor of the simple

tradition of received truths, but that of either such

an

exegesis of the sacred books as the Sophists gave of-

Homer,
result

or such elaborated discourses as they also gave


ethical aspects of religion.

upon the speculative and

The/

was more far-reaching than the creation


If

of either
closely

an institution or a function.
into history,

you look more

you will
real.

find that Ehetoric killed Philosophy.


all

Philosophy died, because for


ceased to be

but a small minority

it

It passed from the sphere of thought

and conduct
truths which

to that of exposition

and

literature.

Its

preachers preached, not because they were bursting with

could not help finding

expression,

but

because they were masters of fine phrases and lived in an

age in which fine phrases had a value.


because
it

It died, in short,

had become

sophistry.

But

sophistry

is

of

no

special age or country.

It is indigenous to all soils


I

upon

114

IV.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN RHETORIC.

which

literature grows.

No

sooner

is

any

special

form

of

literature created by the genius of a great writer than there


arises a class of
style's sake.

men who
sooner

cultivate the style of

it

for the

No

is

any new impulse given either

to philosophy or to religion than there arises a class of

men who copy


to

the form without the substance, and try

make

the echo of the past sound like the voice of the

present.

So

it

has been with Christianity.

It

came

into

the educated world in the simple dress of a Prophet of

Eighteousness.
its life,

It

won that world by


its

the stern reality of

by the

subtle bonds of

brotherhood,

divine message of consolation and of hope.

by its Around it
it

thronged the race of eloquent talkers who persuaded


to change its dress

and

to assimilate its

language to their

own.

It seemed thereby to win a speedier and completer

victory.

But
its

it

purchased conquest at the price of reality.

With
ment

that

progress stopped.

There has been an


;

ele-

of sophistry in it ever since

and

so far as in

any

age that element has been dominant, so far has the


progress of Christianity been arrested.
arrested now, because
Its progress is

many

of its preachers live in

an

unreal world.

The

truths they set forth are truths of

utterance rather than truths of their lives.


tianity is to be again the

But

if

Chris-

power that
its costly

it

was in

its earliest

ages,

it

must renounce

purchase.

A
to

class of

rhetorical chemists

would be thought of only


is
it.

be

ridi-

culed

a class of rhetorical religionists


to

only less ano^

malous because we are accustomed


Christianity
is,

that

the

class

The hope of which was artificially


;

created

may

ultimately disappear

and that the sophis-

IV.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN RHETORIC.

115
as

tical

element in Christian preaching will melt,

transient mist, before the preaching of the prophets of

the ages to come, who, like the prophets of the ages that
are long gone by, will speak only "as the Spirit gives

them utterance."

Lecture V.

CHEISTIANITY AND GEEEK PHILOSOPHY.

The power
among
is

of generalizing
is

and

of

forming abstract

ideas exists, or at least


different

exercised, in varying degrees


at

races

and

diJSerent

times.

The

peculiar feature of the intellectual history of the Greeks

the rapidity with which the power was developed,


of the grasp

and the strength

which

it

had upon them.


group of

The

elaboration of one class of such ideas, those of


to the formation of a

form and quantity, led

sciences, the mathematical sciences,

which hold a perof these

manent
from
fixed

place.

The

earliest

and most typical


the attention
is

sciences is geometry.
all

In

it,

drawn away

the other characteristics of material things, and


single characteristic of their form.

upon the

The

forms are regarded in themselves.

The process

of abstrac-

tion or analysis reaches its limit in the point,

and from
ideas are

that limit the mind,

making

new

departure, begins the

j^rocess of construction or synthesis.

Complex

formed by the addition of one simple idea

to another,

and having been


clear

so

formed can be precisely deiSned.

Their constituent elements can be distinctly stated, and a

boundary drawn round the whole.


off

They can be

BO

marked

from other ideas that the idea which one

V. CHRISTIANITY

AND GREEK PHILOSOPHY.


to

117

man

lias

formed can be communicated

and represented

in another man's mind.


certain
to

The

inferences which, assuming

"axioms"

to

be true and certain "postulates"

be granted, are made by one man, are accepted by

another
tion of

man
mere

or at once disproved.
probability, nor

There

is

no ques-

any halting between two

opinions.

The
is,

inferences are not only true but certain.


that there are not two sciences of geoall

The

result

metry, but one


its definitions

who study

it

are agreed as to both

and

its

inferences.

The

elaboration of

another class of abstract ideas,


first

those of quality, marched at

a limited extent such a parallel

by a parallel road. To march is possible. The

words which are used

to express sensible qualities sug-

gest the same ideas to different minds.

They

are applied
limits

by

diff'erent

minds

to the

same

objects.

But the

of such an agreement are narrow.

When we

pass from

the abstract ideas of qualities, or generalizations as to


substances, which can be tested

by the

senses, to

such

ideas as those, for example, of courage or justice, law or duty, though the words suggest, on the whole, the

same

ideas to one

man

as to another, not all

men would

uniformly apply the same words to the same actions.

The phenomena which suggest such


jDoints of view.

ideas assume a dif-

ferent form and colour as they are regarded from different

They enter into different combinations. marked out by lines which would be universally recognized. The attention of difterent men is arrested by different features. There is conseThey
are not sharply

quently no universally recognized definition of them.


'Nor
is

such a definition possible.

The

idefjs

themselves

118

V. CHRISTIANITY

AND GREEK PHILOSOPHY.


There
is

tend to shade

off into their contraries.

a fringe

of haze round each of them.

The

result is that assertions

about them
only
;

vary.

There

is

not one system of philosophy

there are many.

Between these two


substance,

classes

of

generalizations

and

abstractions, those of quantity

and those of quality or

many Greek
clear

thinkers do not appear to hav&

made any

distinction.

Ideas of each class were


;

regarded as equally capable of being defined


of inference

the canons

which were applicable

to the one

were con-

ceived to be equally applicable to the other:

and the

certainty of inference and exactness of demonstration

which were possible

in regard to

the ideal forms of

geometry, were supposed to be also possible in regard


to the conceptions of metaphysics

and
and

ethics.^

The habit
tions

of

making

definitions,

of

drawing deduc-

from them, was fostered by the habit of discussion.

Discussion under the


1

name

of dialectic, which implies

An indication of this may be seen in the fact that words which have come down to modern times as technical terms of geometry were used indifferently in the physical and moral sciences, e.g. theorem
(^deioprjfxa),

Philo, Leg. alleg.

3.

27

(i.

104), Oeuiprniacn Tots TTipl Kocrnov


;

Kal Twv

fiipiov

avTou

Epict. Diss. 2. 17. 3


:

3. 9.

4. 8. 12,

&c., of
inter-

the doctrines of moral philosophy

sometimes co-ordinated or
(ii.

changed with

Soyfia, e.g. Philo,

de fort. 3

377),
:

Sio,

Aoyt/ctov koX

))9iKwv Kal <f>vcriKwv SoyfiaTUiv Kal dewprjixaTOiv

EjDictet. Diss. 4. 1.
(opio-/j,os)

137, 139, and as a variant Ench. 52.


itself properly applicable

1.

So

definition

is

to the

enclosed land.

So

also ctTroSet^is
all

marking out of the boundaries of was not limited to ideal or "necesexplanations of the less by the more
excerpt.
it,

sary" matter, but was used of


evident;
e.g.

Musonius, Frag.
not a good.

cip.

eJoann. Damasc, in Stob.

Ed.
tliat

ii.

751, ed. Gaisf , after defining


is

gives as an example a proof

pleasure

V.

CHRISTIANITY AND GREEK PHILOSOPHY.

119

that

it

was but a regulated conversation, had a large


and philosophical
It
schools,
life.

place, not only in the rhetorical

but also in ordinary Greek


cards.
strict

was

like a

game

of

The game,

so to

speak,

was conducted under


it

and recognized rules; but

could not proceed

unless each card

had a determined and admitted value.

The
and

definition of terms
dialectic

was
and

its

necessary preliminary
defi-

helped to spread the habit of requiring

nitions over a wider area

to give it a deeper root.

There was
them.

less

divergence in the definitions themselves

than there was in the propositions that were deduced from

That

is to say,

there

was a verbal agreement


real

as to
:

definitions

which was not a

agreement

of ideas

the

same words were found on examination


areas of thought.

to cover different

But whether the

difference lay in the

definitions themselves or in the deductions

made from
There was
criterion^

them, there was nothing to determine which of two contrary or contradictory propositions was true.

no universally recognized standard of appeal, or


as
it

was termed.

Indeed, the question of the nature of

the criterion was one of the chief questions at issue.

Consequently, assertions about abstract ideas and wide


generalizations could only be regarded as the affirmations
of a personal conviction.

The making

of

such an affirm-

ation

was expressed by the same

for a resolution of the will

phi'ase

which was used

''It
:

seems to me," or "It


itself,

seems (good)

to

me"

{^oKd

ixoi)

the affirmation
(^o'y^ca).

by

the corresponding substantive, dogma


as the resolutions of the will of a

But

just

monarch were obeyed


of

by

his subjects, that

is,

were adopted as resolutions

the will of other persons, so the affirmations of a thinker

120

V.

CHRISTIANITY AND GREEK PHILOSOPHY.


to

might be assented
is,

by those who

listened to him, that

might become affirmations of other persons.


It thus

In the

one case as in the other, the same word dogma was


emiDloyed.^
doctrine.

came

to express (1) a decree, (2) a

The

latter

use tended to predominate.


to express

word came ordinarily


u philoso23her

an affirmation
as true

The made by
and

which was accepted


it,

by

those who,

from the

fact of so accepting

became

his followers

formed his school.


of

The acquiescence

of a large

number

men

in the

same affirmation gave


;

to such
it

an affirma-

tion a high degree of probability


it

but

did not cause

to lose its original character of a j)ersonal conviction,


it

nor did

afford

any guarantee that the coincidence

of

expression was also a coincidence of ideas either between


the original thinker and his disciples, or between the
disciples themselves.^

6 oe vo/xos /^acriAews 5oy/>ia,

Dio

Chrj'S. vol.
is

i.

p. 46, ed.
:

Dind.
Soy/xara

2
fill

The

use of the

word in Epictetus

especially instructive
are the inner

a large place in his philosophy.

They

the

mind

{Kpijxara

ipyx^]'?,

Diss. 4. 11. 7)

judgments of in regard to both intellectual

and moral phenomena. They are especially relative to the latter. They are the convictions upon wliich men act, the moral maxims which form
the ultimate motives of action and the resolution to act or not act in
a particular case.
us.

They
9.

are the most personal


1.

See especially, Diss.


;

11. 33, 35,

38; twv

17.

and inalienable part of 26; 29. 11, 12; 2. 1.


AaAefv, " to

21, 32

3. 2.

12

Ench. 45.

Hence awb Soy/xarwv


diro

speak from conviction,"

is

opposed to
3.

;(iAwi/ XaXe'iv, " to

speak

with the

lip only," Diss.


e.g.

16. 7.

If a

man

adopts the Soy/ia of


it

another person,

of a philosopher, so as to

make

his

own, he

is

said, Soyixari a-vixTraOrju-ai,

"to

feel in

unison with the conviction,"


Ilijpot. 1. 13,

Diss.

1.

3.

1.

Scxtus Empiricus, Pijrrh.

distinguishes

two philosophical senses of


ivooKilv
Tii't
:

Soy/xa, (1) assent to facts of sensation, to

TTpdyixaTi,

(2)
it is

assent to the inferences of the several


(a) a strictly personal feeling,

Bcieuces

in either sense

and

(b)

y. CHRISTIANITY

AND GREEK PHILOSOPHY.


its

121 and

"Within these limits of

original

and proper

use,

as expressing a fact of mind, the

word has an

indis-

But the fact of the personal character of a dogma soon became lost to sight. Two tendencies which grew with a parallel growth dominated the world in place of the recognition of it. It came to be assumed
putable value.
that certain convictions of certain philosophers were not

simply true in relation to the philosophers themselves,

and

to the state of

knowledge in their time, but had a


to the

universal validity: subjective and temporary convictions

were thus elevated


truths.

rank of objective and eternal

It

came

also to

be assumed that the processes

of reason so closely followed the order of nature, that a

system of ideas constructed in

strict

accordance with the


realities

laws of reasoning corresponded exactly with the


of things.

The unity

of such a

system

reflected, it

was
It

thought, the unity of the world of objective fact.

followed that the truth or untruth of a given proposition

was thought

to

be determined by

its logical

consistency

or inconsistency with the

sum

of previous inferences.

These tendencies were strongly accentuated by the


decay
of original thinking.

Philosophy in
It

later

Greece

was

less

thought than

literature.

was the exegesis


in itself true

of received doctrines.
fessors.

Philosophers had become proof

The question

what was

had

become entangled with the question

of
:

what the Master

firm conviction, not a mere vague impression it was in the latter of the two senses that the philosophers of research laid it down as their

maxim,

they did away, not with ra t^atvo/xeva, but jj.^ Soyixari^eiv with assertions about them, ibid. 1, 19, 22 their attitude in reference
:
:

to TO. aSrjXa

was simply
1.

ou^^ opi^oj,

" I abstain from giving a defirition

of them," ibid.

197, 198.

122

V. CHRISTIANITY

AND GREEK PHILOSOPHY.


of adherence to the traditions
of finding

had

said.

The moral duty


all

of a school

was stronger than the moral duty


hazards.

the truth at
doctrine
itself.

The

literary expression of a

came

to

be more important than the doctrine

The

differences of expression

between one thinker

Words became fetishes. Outside the schools were those who were litterateurs rather than philosophers, and who fused different eleand another were exaggerated.
ments together into systems which had a greater unity
of literary

form than of

logical coherence.

But these
it,

very facts of the literary character of philosophy, and


of the contradictions in the expositions of

served to

spread

it

over a wider area.

They tended on the one


with philosophy

hand
hand

to bring a literary acquaintance

into the sphere of general education,


to

and on the other

produce a propaganda.
its

Sect rivalled sect in

trying to win scholars for

school.

The

result

was

that the ordinary life of later Greece

was saturated with

philosophical ideas, and that the discordant theories of


rival schools

were blended together in the average mind

into a syncretistic dogmatism.

Against this whole group of tendencies there was

more than one

reaction.
to

The tendency
doubt
;

to dogmatize to

was met by the tendency


be traced in minute
is sufficiently

and the tendency

doubt flowed in many streams, which can with


detail,

difficulty

but whose general course

described for the ordinary student in the

Academics of Cicero.
of our era there Bchools.

In the second and third centuries


to

had come

be three main groups of

"

Some men,"
^

writes Scxtus Empiricus,^ " say


Ilij^pot. 1. 3.

Sext. Empir. Pijrrh.

V. CHKISTIANITT

AND GREEK PHILOSOPHY.


;

123
impos-

that they have found the truth


sible for truth to
it.

some say that


;

it is

be apprehended

some

still

search for

The

fii'st

class consists of those

who

are specially

designated Dogmatics, the followers of Aristotle and


Epicurus, the Stoics, and some others
:

the second class

consists of the followers of Clitomachus

and Carneades,

and other" Academics


Sceptics."

the third class consists of the


as the philosophy

They may be distinguished

of assertion, the philosophy of denial, of research.^

and the philosophy

majority.
of

But the first of these was in an overwhelming The Dogmatics, especially in the form either

pure Stoicism or of Stoicism largely infused with

Platonism, were in possession of the field of educated

thought.

It is a convincing proof of the completeness

with which that thought was saturated with their methods

and their fundamental conceptions, that those methods

and conceptions are found even among the philosophers


of research

who claimed

to

have wholly disentangled

themselves from them.^

The philosophy
earliest

of assertion, the philosophy of denial^ of research,

and the philosophy

were

all

alike outside the

forms of Christianity.

In those forms the moral


but

and
sive.
^

spiritual elements

were not only supreme but exclu-

They

reflected the philosophy, not of Greece,

Ihid. 4, SoyfiaTLK-q, aKaSr/z^atk?;, a-KeTTTLKrj.

For example, Sextus Empiricus,


6/36^0),

in spite of his constant

formuh,

ovx

maintains the necessity of having definable conceptions,


rjixiv
it

Twv

evvooviiivoiv

pay jxaTiov ras

oi'crtas

cTrtvoeii/

6(f)t\o[Xv,

and

he argues that
because

it is

impossible for a

man

to

have an eVvota of God


3.

He

has

XtO

admitted ovo-m, Pyrrli. Hypot.

2, 3.

124

V.

CHRISTIANITY AND GREEK PHILOSOPHY.

oi Palestine.

That philosophy was almost entirely


It

ethical.

It dealt "with the problems, not of being in the abstract,

but of

human

life.

was

stated for the most part in

short antithetical sentences, with a symbol or parable to

enforce them.

no eye

for

was a philosophy of proverbs. It had the minute anatomy of thought. It had no


It
It

system, for the sense of system was not yet awakened.


It

had no

taste for verbal distinctions.

was content

with the symmetry of balanced sentences, without attempting to construct a perfect whole.
It reflected as in a

mirror, and not unconsciously, the difficulties, the contradictions, the unsolved

enigmas of the world of


remained

fact.
selfits

When
own
its

this Palestinian philosophy


it

became more
still

conscious than

had been,

it

within

sphere, the enigmas of the moral world were


it

still

subject-matter, and

became in the Fathers


fatalism,

of the

Talmud on the one hand


casuistry.

and on the other

The
side

earliest

forms of Christianity were not only out-

the

sphere of Greek philosophy,

but they also

appealed, on the one hand, mainly to the classes which

philosophy did not reach, and, on the other hand, to a


standard which philosophy did not recognize.

''Not

many
time
:

wise

men

after the flesh"

were

called in St. Paul's


sar-

and more than a century afterwards, Cclsus


be

castically declared the

law
''

of

admission to the Christian


enter,

communities to

Let no educated man

no

wise man, no prudent man, for such things


evil
;

we deem
him como

but whoever
is

is

ignorant,

whoever
is

is

unintelligent,

whoever

uneducated, whoever

simple, let

V.

CHRISTIANITY AND GREEK PHILOSOPHY.

125

and be welcome."^

It proclaimed, moreover, that 'Hlie

philosophy of the world was foolishness with God."


appealed to prophecy and to testimony.
logical demonstration, it

It

" Instead of

produced living witnesses of the


of

words and wonderful doings

Jesus

Chiist."

The

philosophers from the point of view of "worldly educa-

tion"

made

sport of it: Celsus^ declared that the Chris-

tian teachers

were no better than the

priests of

Mithra

or of Hekatd, leading

men wherever

they willed with the

maxims

of a blind belief.

It is therefore the

more remarkable that within a cenfirst

tury and a half after Christianity and philosophy

came

into close contact, the ideas

and methods
have made

of philo-

sophy had flowed in such mass into Christianity, and


filled so

large a place in

it,

as to

it

no

less

philosophy than a religion.

The question which

arises,

and which should properly

be discussed before the influences of particular ideas ar&


traced in particular doctrines,
is,

how

this result is to

be

The answer must explain both how Christianity and philosophy came into contact, and how when in contact the one exercised upon the
accounted for as a whole.
other the influence of a moulding force.

The explanation

is to

be found in the fact


superficial antagonism,

that, in

spite of the apparent

and

between

certain leading ideas of current philosophy

and the lead-

ing ideas of Christianity there was a special and real


1

Origen,

c.

Cels.

3.

44

see also the references given in

Keim^

Celsus' walires
2

Wort, pp. 11, 40.


Cels. 1. 9.

Origen,

c.

126
kinsliii^.

V.

CHRISTIANITY AND GREEK PHILOSOPHY.


Christianity gave to the problems of philosophy
old,

a new solution which was cognate to the


doubts the certainty of a revelation.
ideas
is

and

to its

The kinship
it

of

admitted, and explanations of

are offered
'^

by

both Christian writers and their opponents.

"We teach

the same as the Greeks," says Justin Martyr,^ "though we alone are hated for what we teach." " Some of our

number," says Tertullian,^ "who are versed in ancient literature, have composed books by means of which it

may be
of

clearly seen that

or monstrous,

we have embraced nothing new nothing in which we have not the support
public literature."

common and

Elsewhere^ the same


be

writer founds an argument for the toleration of Christianity on the fact that its opponents maintained
it

to

but a kind

of philosophy, teaching the

very same doc-

trines as the philosophers

innocence,

justice, endui-ance,

soberness, and chastity

he claims on that ground the

same

liberty for Christians

which was enjoyed by philo-

sophers.

The general recognition of this kinship of ideas is even more conclusively shown by the fact that explanations of
it

were offered on both the one side and the

other.

was argued by some Christian apologists that the best doctrines of philosophy were due to the iuworking in the world of the same Divine Word who had
(a) It

become incarnate
Christ,

in Jesus Christ.

"

The teachings
For

of

Plato," says Justin Martjrr,^ "are not alien to those of

though not
^

in all respects similar.


2

all

Apol.

i.

20.

De

testim. animce^ 1.

Ax)ol. 46.

* Apol. 2. 13.

V. CHRISTIANITY

AND GREEK PHILOSOPHY.

127

the writers (of antiquity) were able to have a dim vision

by means of the indwelling seed It was argued by others planted Word."


of realities

of the im-

that philo-

sophers had borrowed or "stolen" their doctrines from


the Scriptures.
prophets,"

"From

the divine preachings of the

says Minucius Felix,^

"they imitated the


poet or sophist," says

shadow
phets?

of half-truths."

"What

Tertullian,^

"has not drunk


it is,

at the fountain of the pro-

From thence

therefore, that philosophers

have quenched the

thirst of their minds, so that it is the

very things which they have of ours which bring us into


comparison with them."

"They have borrowed from


and knowledge and

our books," says Clement of Alexandria,^ "the chief


doctrines they hold, both on faith
science,

on hope and
fear of

love,

on repentance and temperance


goes in detail through

and the

God:" and he

many
show

doctrines, speculative as well as ethical, either to

that they were borrowed from revelation,

or to

uphold the truer thesis that philosophy was no


schoolmaster of the Greeks than the

less

the

Law was

of the

Jews
of

to

bring them to Christ.

(b) It

was argued, on the other hand, by the opponents Christianity that it was a mere mimicry of philosophy
it.

or a blurred copy of

" They weave a web of mis-

understandings of the old doctrine," says Celsus,^

"and

sound them forth with a loud trumpet before men, like


hierophants booming round those
in mysteries."

who

are being initiated

Christianity
in
it

Platonism.
1

Whatever
2. 1.

was but a misunderstood was true had been better


2

Octav. 34.

^pol

47.
c.

Strom.

* Origen,

Cels. 3. 16.

128

V.

CHRISTIANITY AND GREEK PHILOSOPHT.

expressed before.^

Even

the striking and distinctive

saying of the Sermon on the Mount, " Whosoever shall


smite thee on thy right cheek, turn to
also," was but a coarser and more homely

him the other way of saying

what had been extremely well


It
I

said

by

Plato's Socrates.^

was through

this kinship of ideas that Christianity

was readily absorbed by some of the higher natures in The two classes of ideas probably 'the Greek world. came
had a
ture
into contact in philosophical Judaism.

For

it

is

clear on the one hand that the Jews of the dispersion


literature,

and on the other hand that that


itself in

litera-

was clothing

Greek forms and attracting


of that literature

the attention of the

Greek world. Some


letters

was philosophical.

In the Sibylline verses, the poem of


of
:

Phocylides, and the

Heraclitus, there
in

is

blending of theology and ethics

some

of tlie writings

which are ascribed


there
of

to Philo,

but which in reality bridge

the interval between Philo and the Christian Fathers,


is

a blending of theology and metaphysics.


are

them
is

"very

far

from the kingdom of God."

None The

hypothesis that they paved the

way

for Christian philofirst

sophy

confirmed by the fact that in the

articulate

expressions of that philosophy precisely those elements


are dominant which were dominant in Jewish philosophy.

Two

such elements

may

specially be mentioned: (1) the

^allegorical

method of interpretation which was common to both Jews and Greeks, and by means of which both the
^

Origen,

c.

Ceh.

5.

65;

G.

1, 7,

15, 19

see also the references in

Keim,
^

p. 77.

Ibid. 7. 58.

So Minucius

Felix, in

Keim,

p.

157.

T. CHRISTIANITY

AND GREEK PHILOSOPHY.

129

Gnostics

who were

without, and the Alexandrians

who

were within, the pale of the associated communities, were


able to find their philosophy in the Old Testament as

well as in the

New;

(2) the cosmological speculations,

which occupied only a small space in the thoughts of


Greek thinkers, but which were already widening to a larger circle on the surface of Greek philosophy,
earlier

and which became


philosophies

so

prominent in the

first

Christian

as to have thrust aside almost all other

elements in the current representations of them.

The

Christian

philosophy which thus rose

out

of

philosophical Judaism was partly apologetic and partly


speculative.

The

apologetic part of

it

arose from the


to

necessity of defence.

The educated world tended


it

scout Christianity

when

was

first

presented to them, as
It

an immoral and barbarous atheism.

was necessary
other.

to

show that

it

was neither the one nor the


fell into

The
less

defence naturally

the hands of those Christians


;

who were
difference,

versed in Greek methods

and they not

naturally sought for points of agreement rather than of

and presented Christian truths in a Greek


speculative part of
it

form.

The

arose from

some

of its

elements having found an especial affinity with some of


the

new developments

of Pythagoreanism

and Platonism.
to

Inside the original communities were

men who began

build great edifices of speculation upon the narrow basis


of one or other of the pinnacles of the Christian temple

and outside those communities were men who began


coalesce into communities

to

which had the same moral

aims as the original communities, and which appealed

130
in the

V. CHRISTIANITY

AND GREEK PHILOSOPHY.


authorities,

main

to the

same

but in which the

simpler forms of worship were elaborated into a thaumaturgic ritual,

and the

solid facts of Scripture history-

evaporated into mist.

They were linked on the one


Greek mysteries, and on the

hand with the


other

cults of the

with philosophical idealism.

The tendency

to

conceive of abstract ideas as substances, with form and


real existence, received in

them
and

its

extreme development.

"Wisdom and

vice, silence

desire,

were

real beings

they were not, as they had been to earlier thinkers, mere


thin vapours which had floated upwards from the world
of sensible existences,

and hung

like clouds in

an uncer-

tain twilight.

The

real

world was indeed not the world

of sensible existences, of thoughts and utterances about


sensible things, but a world in

which sensible existences

were the shadows and not the substance, the waves and
not the
It
sea.i

was natural that those who held

to the

earlier

forms of Christianity should take alarm.


the design of his Stromateis^'^ "of what
ears

"I am

not

unaware," says Clement of Alexandria, in setting forth


is

dinned in our
tell

by the ignorant timidity

of those

who

us that

^ The above slight sketch of some of the leading tendencies which have been loosely grouped together under the name of Gnosticism has

been left unelaborated, because a fuller account, -svith the distinctions which must necessarily be noted, would lead us too far from the main
track of the Lecture

some of the tendencies will re-appear in detail and students will no doubt refer to the brilliant exposition of Gnosticism in llarnack, Dog me ngcschi elite, i. pp. 18G
:

in subsequent Lectures,

226, ed.
2

2.

Strnvi.

1.1: almost the wliole of the

first

book

is

valuable as a

vindication of the iilacc of culture in Christianity.

V.

CHRISTIANITY AND GREEK PHILOSOPHY.


to

131

we ought
should

occupy ourselves with the most necessary

matters, those in
jDass

which the Eaith consists and hj the superfluous matters that lie
:

that

we

outside

them, which vex and detain us in vain over points that


contribute nothing to the end in view.

There are others


hands of a
" The

who

think that philosophy will prove to have been introlife

duced into

from an

evil source, at the

mischievous inventor, for the ruin of men."

simpler-minded," says Tertullian,^ "not to say ignorant

and unlearned men, who always form the majority


believers,

of

are frightened at the

Economy"

[the philoTrinity].

sophical explanation of the doctrine of

the

" These men," says a contemporary writer,^ of some of


the early philosophical schools at Eome, " have fearlessly

perverted the divine Scriptures, and set aside the rule of


the ancient faith, and have not
as they do, not

known

Christ, seeking
say,

what the divine Scriptures

but what

form of syllogism may be found


ness
;

to support their godless-

and

if

one advances any express statement of the


it

divine Scripture, they try to find out whether

can form

a conjunctive or a disjunctive hypothetical.

And

having

deserted the holy Scriptures of God, they study geometry,

being of the earth and speaking of the earth, and ignoring

Him who
rate,

comes from above.


:

Some
some

of them, at
of

any

give their minds to Euclid

them are
:

admiring disciples of Aristotle and Theophrastus

as for

Galen, some of them go so far as actually to worship

him."

The

history of the second century is the history of

the clash and conflict between these


1

new

mystical and
5.

Adv. Prax.

3.

Quoted by Euseb. H. E.

28. 13.

k2

132

V.

CHRISTIANITY AND GREEK PniLOSOPHT.

philosophical
/forms.

elements of Christianity and


the

its

earlier

On

one hand were the majority of the

original communities, holding in the


of Christianity

main the conception


best contemof

which probably
first

finds its

porary exposition in the

two books

the Apos-

tolical Constitutions, a religion of stern

moral practice

and of

strict

moral

discipline, of the simple love of

God
the

and the unelaborated


other hand were the

faith in Jesus Christ.

On
the

new communities, and


side with faith,

new
their

members
of

of the older communities,

with their conception

knowledge side by

and with

tendency to speculate side by side with their acceptance


of tradition.

The

conflict

was
it

inevitable.

In the current
as impos-

state of educated opinion


sible for the original

would have been

communities

to ignore the existence

of philosophical elements either in their

the

own body, or in new communities which were growing up around


it

them, as

would be

for the Christian churches of our

own day

to ignore physical science.

The

result of the

conflict was, that the

extreme wing of each of the conoff

tending parties dropped


old-fashioned Christians,

from the main body.


of

The

who would admit

no com-

promise, and maintained the old usages unchanged, were

gradually detached as Ebionites, or Nazaraeans.

The

old

orthodoxy became a new heresy.

In the

lists

of the

early hand-books they are ranked as the first heretics.

The more

philosophical Gnostics also passed one

by one
lost

outside the Christian lines.


their Christian colour. Christian, form.

Their ideas gradually

They
The

lived in another, but non-

The true

Gnostic, though he repudiates


logical

the name,

is

Plotinus.

development of the

V. CHRISTIANITY

AND GREEK PHILOSOPHY.


of Yalentinus

133

thouglits of Basilides

and Justin,

and the

Naassenes,

is to

be found in Neo-Platonism

that splendid

vision of incomparable and irrecoverable cloudland in

which the sun

of

Greek philosophy

set.

The

struggle really ended, as almost

all

great conflicts

end, in a compromise.

There was apparently so com-

plete a victory of the original communities

and

of the

principles

which they embodied, that


from Christian

their opponents

seem

to vanish

literature

and Christian

history.

It

was in

reality a victory in

which the victors

were the vanquished.

There was so large an absorption

by

the original communities of the principles of their

opponents as to destroy the main reason for a separate


existence.

The absorption was


speculate.

less of s peculatio ns

than

of the tendency to

The residuum

of per-

manent
is at

effect

was mainly a

certain habit of mind.

This

once a consequence and a proof of the general argucertain eleso widely so

ment which has been advanced above, that


ments
of education in philosophy

had been

diffused,

and in the course of centuries had become

strongly rooted, as to have caused an instinctive tendency


to

throw ideas into a philosophical form, and to

test

assertions

The existence of such a tendency is shown in the first instance by the mode in which the earliest " defenders of the faith" met
by philosophical canons.
their opponents
;

and the supposition that


from the

it

was

instincit

tive is a legitimate inference

fact that

was

unconscious.

For Tatian,^ though he ridicules Greek


it,

philosophy and professes to have abandoned


1

yet builds

Orat ad

Grcec. 2.

134

V.

CHRISTIANITY AND GREEK PHILOSOPHY.

up

theories of the Logos, of free-will,

and

of the nature

of spirit, out of the elements of current philosophical


conceptions.
Tertullian,

though he

asks,^

''What

re-

semblance
tian,

is

there between a philosopher and a Chi-isof

between a disciple

Greece and a disciple of

heaven?" expresses Christian truths in philosophical


terms, and argues against his opponents

for example,

against

Marcion

by

methods which might serve as

typical examples of the current

methods of controversy
Hippolytus,^ though
for listening

between philosophical

schools.

And

he reproves another Christian writer

to

Gentile teaching, and so disobeying the injunction, "

Go

not into the

way

of the Gentiles," is himself saturated


litera-

with philosophical conceptions and philosophical


ture.

The answer,
been before us

in short, to the
is

main question which has came


into a

that Christianity
for
it.

ground

which was already prepared


diffused over the

Education was widely


all classes of

Greek world, and among


It
is

the community.
of inquiry

had not merely aroused the habit


the foundation of philosophy, but
Certain

which

had

also

taught certain philosophical methods.

elements of the philosophical temper had come into existence on a large scale, penetrating
all classes of society

and inwrought
time.

into the general intellectual fibre of the

They had produced

certain

habit of mind.

When, through

the kinship of ideas, Christianity had


classes, the habit of

been absorbed by the educated


*

mind

Apol. 46.

Rcfut. ovin. hccres.

5. 18,

T. CHRISTIANITY

AND GREEK PHILOSOPHY.


remained and dominated.

13o
It

which had preceded

it

showed
1.

itself
firgt

mainly in three ways


of these

The

was the tendency

to define.

earliest Christians

had been content

to believe in

The God
their

and

to worship

Him, without endeavouring

to

define

precisely the conception of


faith

Him

which lay beneath


to

and their worship. They looked up

Him

as their

They thought of Him as one, as beneficent, and as supreme. But they drew no fence of words round their idea of Him, and still less did they attempt to demonstrate by processes of reason that their idea of Him was true. But there is an anecdote quoted with approval by Eusebius^ from Ehodon, a controverFather in heaven.
sialist of

the latter part of the second century, which

furnishes a striking proof of the growing strength at


that time of the philosophical temper.
It relates the

main points of a short controversy between Ehodon and


Apelles.

Apelles was in some respects in sympathy

with Marcion, and in some respects followed the older


Christian tradition.

He

refused to be drawn into the

new

philosophizing current; and

Ehodon attacked him


to

for his conservatism.


errors,

''He was often refuted for his


but that as every one

which indeed made him say that we ought not


;

inquire too closely into doctrine

had believed,
those

so

he should remain.

For he declared that

who

set their

hopes on the Crucified One would be

saved, if only they were found in good works.

But the

most uncertain thing


about God.
ciple, just as

of all that

he said was what he said


is

He
we

held no doubt that there

One Prin'

hold too: but


1

when
13.

I said to him,

Tell

H. E.

5.

136
US

V.

CHRISTIANITY AND GREEK PHILOSOPHY.


that, or
is

how you demonstrate

on what grounds you


Principle,'. ...

are able to assert that there


said that
tion.

One

he

he did not know, but that that was his convicadjured him to
tell

When I thereupon
is

the truth,

he

swore that he was telling the truth, that he did not

know

how there
so

one unbegotten God, but that nevertheless

he believed.

Then

I laughed at

him and denounced

him, for that, giving himself out to be a teacher, he did


not
to prove what he taught." The second manifestation of the philosophical habit mind was the tendency to speculate, that is, to draw

know how

2.

of

inferences from definitions, to

weave the inferences into

systems, and to test assertions by their logical consistency


or inconsistency with those systems.
tians

The

earliest Chris-

had but

little

conception of a system.

The incon-

sistency of one apparently true statement with another did

not vex their souls.


of the It

Their beliefs reflected the variety

world and of men's thoughts about the world.


of the secrets of the first great successes of

was one

Christianity.

There were different and apparently


it.

irre-

concilable elements in

It appealed to

men

of various

mould.

It furnished a basis for the

construction of

strangely diverse edifices.

But the

result of the ascenfifth

dency of philosophy was, that in the fourth and


centuries

the

majority of churches insisted not only

upon a unity of belief in the fundamental facts of Christianity,

but also upon a uniformity of speculations in

regard to thosejacts.

The premises

of those speculations
:

were assumed
propositions

the conclusions logically followed


or

the
to-

which were contrary

contradictory

them were measured, not by the greater

or less pro-

V.

CHRISTIANITY AND GREEK PHILOSOPHY.

137

bability of the premises, but

by the

logical certainty of
test of truth.

the conclusions
3.

and symmetry became a

in

The new habit of mind manifested itself not less the importance which came to be attached to it. The
and
at last superior to, trust in
life.

holding of approved opinions was elevated to a position


at first co-ordinate with,

God and

the effort to live a holy


first

There had been

indeed from the

an element of knowledge in the

conception of the means of salvation.

The knowledge
Greek philosophy^

of the facts of the life of Jesus Christ necessarily precedes faith in him.

But under the touch


:

of

knowledge had become speculation


attached to faith in
attach to
it

whatever obligation

its

original sense
:

was conceived
of

to

in its

new

sense

the

new form

knowledge

was held

to

be not

less

necessary than the old.

The Western communities not only took over the


greater part of the inheritance, but also proceeded to

assume in a

still

greater degree the correspondence of

ideas with realities,

and

of inferences about ideas It

with

truths about realities.

added such large groups to


dogmatic theology of Latin
is

the

sum

of them, that in the

and Teutonic Christendom the content


than Eastern.

more Western

But the conception

of such a theology

and

its

underlying assumptions are Greek.


to attach the

They come
are in reality

from the Greek tendency

same certainty

to metaphysical as to physical ideas.

They

built

upon a quicksand.

There

is

no more reason to
revelatio njg^

suppose that

God has

revealed metaphysics than that

He

has revealed chemistry.

The Chr istian

at least primarily, a setting forth of certain facts^

It

138

V. CHRISTIANITY
itself afford

AND GREEK PHILOSOPHY.


a guarantee of the certainty of

does not in

the speculations which are built upon those facts.

All

such speculations are dogmas in the original sense of the


word.

They

are simply personal convictions.

To the
assent:

statement of one man's convictions other

men may

but they can never be quite sure that they understand


its

terms in the precise sense in which the original framer

of the statement understood them.

The
and
it

belief that metaphysical theology is

more than

this, is the chief

bequest of Greece to religious thought,


It has given to
is

has been a damnosa hereditas.

later Christianity that part of it

which

doomed

to

perish,

and which

yet,

while

it lives,

holds the key of

the prison-house of

many

souls.

Lecture YI.

GEEEK AND CHEISTIAN ETHICS.

It has been

common

to construct pictures of tlie state

of morals in the first centuries of the Christian era

from

the statements of

satirists

who, like

all satirists,

had a

large element of caricature, and from the denunciations

of the Christian apologists, which, like all denunciations,

have a large element

of exaggeration.

The

pictures so

constructed are mosaics of singular vices, and they have


led to the not unnatural impression that those centuries

constituted an era of exceptional wickedness.

Ic is

no

doubt
It
is

difiicult to

gauge the average morality

of

any age.
the

questionable whether the average morality of civi:

lized ages has largely varied


satirists

it is

possible that

if

of our

vices of ancient

own time were equally outspoken, the Eome might be found to have a parallel
it is

in modern London; and

probable, not on merely


of the evidence

u priori grounds, but from the nature

which remains, that there was in ancient Eome, is in modern London, a preponderating mass

as there
of those

who loved

their children

and their homes, who were

good neighbours and

faithful friends,

who

conscientiously

140

VI.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN ETHICS.


civil duties,

discharged their
senses of the
It has also

and were in

all

the current

word " moral" men.^


been common
to

frame statements of the

moral philosophy which dominated in those centuries,


entirely

from the data afforded by

earlier writers,

and

to account for the existence of nobler elements in con-

temporary writers by the hypothesis that Seneca, Epictetus,

and Marcus Aurelius, had come into contact with


In the case of Seneca, the belief
in

Christian teachers.

such contact went so far as to induce a writer in an imitative age to produce a series of letters

which are

still

commonly printed
It is difficult,

at the

end

of his

works, and which


St.

purport to be a correspondence between him and

Paul.

no doubt,

to

prove the negative jDroposition

that such writers did not


tianity
;

come

into contact with Chris-

but a strong presumption against the idea that


if it

such contact,

existed, influenced to
is

any considerable

extent their ethical principles,

established

by the de-

monstrable fact that those principles form an integral part


of their
is

whole philosophical system, and that their system

in close logical

and

historical connection

with that of

their philosophical predecessors.^ It will be found on a closer examination that the

age

in
^

which Christianity grew was


The evidence
for the
is

in reality an age of moral

above statements has not yet been fully


:

gathered together, and


writer on the
geschichte
^

too long to be given even in outline here

the statements are in full harmony with the view of the chief modern
subject,
Friedliinder,
iii.

Darstellungen aus der Siitenp.

Roms,

see especially Bd.

676, 5te

aufl.
is

Tliis is sufficiently

shown by the
constitutiri'' a

fact,

which

in other respects
earlier

to bo rogretted, that in

most accounts of Stoicism the

and

later

elements are viewed as

homogeneous whole.

VI.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN ETHICS.

141

reformation.
morality,

There was the growth

of a higher religious

which believed that God was pleased by moral

action rather than

by

sacrifice.^

There was the growth There was a


vices of the

of a belief that life requires

amendment.^
This

reaction in the popular

mind against the


is

great centres of population.

especially seen in

the large multiplication of religious guilds, in which purity of


life

was a condition of membership

it

pre-

pared the minds of

men

to receive Christian teaching,

and forms not the

least important

among the

causes which
:

led to the rapid dissemination of that teaching

it

affected

the development of Christianity in that the

members

of

the religious guilds

who

did so accept Christian teaching,

brought over with them into the Christian communities

many of the practices

of their guilds

and of the conceptions


of the

which lay beneath them. The philosophical phase


ism.

reformation began on the confines of Stoicism and Cynic-

For Cynicism had revived.

It

had almost faded

into
its its

insignificance after

Zeno and Chrysippus had formed

nobler elements into a


^
'

new

system, and left only

dog-bark " ^ and

descendants of

But when the philosophical Zeno and Chrysippus had become fashionits

squalor.

able litterateurs

and had sunk independence of thought

and
^

practice in a respectability

and "worldly conformity"


to Epictetus
:

"How am

I to eatl" said a

man

"So
:

as to please

God," was the reply {Diss. 1. 13). The idea is further developed in Porphyry, who says " God wants nothing (281. 15) the God who is
:

771 TTtto-iv is

aiiAos

hence

all

IvvXov

is to

Him

aKaOaprov, and should


(163. 15).

therefore not be offered to


2

Him, not even the spoken word

M. Aurelius owed
depaTreia.
(i.

to Rusticus the idea that life required BiopOoicris


ii.

and
*

7 and

13).

TO uA-aKTcti/, Philostr. 587.

142

VI.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN ETHICS.


felt to

which the more earnest men


ism revived, or rather the

be intolerable, Cynic-

earlier

and better Stoicism

revived, to re-assert the paramount importance of moral

conduct, and to protest against the unnatural alliance

between philosophy and the fashionable world.


It
is

to this

moral reformation within the philosophical


Its

sphere that I wish especially to draw your attention.


chief preacher

was Epictetus.

He was

ranked among
is

the Stoics

but his portrait of an ideal philosopher

the

portrait of a Cynic.^

In him, whether he be called Stoic

or Cynic, the ethics of the ancient world find at once


their loftiest expression

and their most complete

realiza-

tion

and

it

will be an advantage, instead of endeavouiing

to construct a composite
all

and comprehensive picture from

the available materials, to limit our view mainly to


says, and, as far as possible, to let his

what Epictetus

sermons speak for themselves.

The reformation

affected chiefly

two points:
life
;

(1) the
(2) the

place of ethics in relation to philosophy and

contents of ethical teaching.


1.

The
and
;

Stoics of the later Eepublic

and

of the

age

of the CaBsars

had come

to give their chief attention to

logic

literature.

The study

of ethics

was no longer
Logic,

supreme

and

it

had changed

its character.

which
its

in the systems of Zeno and Chrysippus had been only


servant,
its

was becoming

its
it

master

it

was both usurping

place and turning

into casuistry.

The study

of

literature, of

what the great masters

of philosophy

had

taught, was superseding the moral practice which such


^

Tlie title of Diss. 3. 22, in

which the

ideal philosopher is described,

is irpl K-VVLO-fLOV.

VI.

GEEEK AND CHRISTIAN ETHICS.

143
Stoics of

study was intended to help and foster.

The

the time could construct ingenious fallacies and compose


elegant moral discourses
;

but they were ceasing to regard

the actual "living according to nature" as the main object


of their lives.

The

revival of Cynicism

was a
and

re-assertion
of

of the supremacy of ethics over logic,

conduct

over literary knowledge.


repulsive.
salon,''^

was at first crude and were "the preachers of the the Cynics were "the preachers of the street." ^
It If the

Stoics

They The earnestness was of the essence, the squalor was accidental. The former was absorbed by Stoicism and gave it a new
friars of imperial times.

They were the mendicant


were
earnest, but they

were squalid.

impulse

the latter dropped off as an excrescence

when

Cynicism was tested by time.


as far as the Cynics

Epictetus was not carried

were in the reaction against Logic.


indesaid.^

The Cynics would have postponed the study of it finitely. Moral reformation is more pressing, they
as a prophylactic against the deceitfulness of

Epictetus holds to the necessity of the study of Logic

arguments

But he deprecates the exaggerated importance which had come to be attached to it. The students of his day were giving an altogether
and the
plausibility of language.

disproportionate attention to the

weaving of

fallacious

arguments and the mere setting of traps


in their speech.

to catch

men

He would
Neither
it

restore Logic to its original

subordination.
1 "

nor the whole dogmatic phii,

H.

Schiller, Geschichte der


1.

romischen Kaiserzeit, Bd.

452.

Diss.

17. 4,

e77-tyet

fiaXXov Oeparr^veLv, the interpolated remark


:

of a student

when

Epictetus has begun a lectura upon Logic

the addi-

tion, Kal TO. ajjioia,

seems

to

show

that the phrase was a customary one.

144

VI.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN ETHICS.


it

losophy of which

was the instrument was of value in And moreover, whatever might be the place of itself. such knowledge in an abstract system and in an ideal
world,
it

was impossible

to disregard the actual condi-

tions of the world as


is such,

it is.

The

state of

human

nature

that to linger

upon the threshold

of philosophy at

is to

induce a moral torpor.

The student who aims

shaping his reason into harmony with natui-e has to


begin, not with unformed and plastic material, which he

can fashion to his will by systematic rules of

art,

but

with his nature as

it is

shaped already, almost beyond

by pernicious habits, and beguiling associations of ideas, and false opinions about good and evil. While you are teaching him logic and physics, the very evils which it is his object to remedy will be The old familiar names of gathering fresh strength.
possibility of unshaping,

"good" and

"evil," with all the false ideas which they

suggest, will be giving birth at every

moment

to

mistaken

judgments and wrong

actions, to all the false pleasures

and

false pains

which

it is

the very purpose of philosophy


as he

to destroy.

He must begin,

must end, with

practice.

He

must accept precepts and

act

upon them before he

learns the theory of them.

His progress in philosophy

must be measured by
but in moral conduct.

his progress, not in knowledge,

This view, which Epictetus preaches again and again

with passionate fervour, will be best stated in his own

words
"

^
:

A man

who

is

making

progress, having learnt from the phiits

losophers that desire hab good things for


i

object

and undesire

Diss.

1.

4.

VI.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN ETHICS.

145

evil things,

having learnt

contentment and dispassionateness come


object of undesire,

moreover that in no other way can to a man than by his


altogether, or at least post-

never failing of the object of his desire and never encountering the

banishes the one

pones
that
if

it,

while he allows the other to act only in regard to those

things which are within the province of the will.

For he knows

he strives not to have things that are without the province

of the will, he will

things and so be unhappy.


fesses is to

some time or other encounter some such But if what moral perfection procause happiness and dispassionateness and peace of
is

mind, then of course progress towards moral perfection


gress towards each one of the things

pro-

which moral perfection


is

professes to secure.
to that to
"

For in all cases progress which perfection finally brings us.


then, that while

the approaching

How
?

is it,

of moral perfection,

we admit this to be the definition we seek and show off progress in other
?

things

What
then
is

is

the effect of moral perfection


?'

"'Peace of mind
"

Who

making progress towards


Chrysippus
?

it ?

He who
:

has read

many

treatises of

Surely moral perfection does


if it
is

not consist in this

in

understanding Chrysippus

does,

then confessedly progress towards moral perfection


else
is,

nothing
as
it

than understanding a good deal of Chrysippus.

But

while
"
'

we admit

that moral perfection effects one thing,


to perfection

we

make

progress

the approximation
tells us,
'

effect another.

This man,' some one

can

now read Chrysippus even

by himself.'

"'You
friend,'

are
tells

most assuredly making splendid progress,


him.
!

my

he

indeed why do you make game of him ? Why do you lead him astray from the consciousness of his misfortunes ? Will you not show him what the effect of moral perfection is, that he may learn where to look for progress towards it ? "Look for progress, my poor friend, in the direction of the effect which you have to produce. And what is the effect which you have to produce ? Never to be disappointed of the object
" Progress

of your desire, and never to encounter the object of your unde-

146
sire
:

VI.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN ETHICS.

never to miss the mark in your endeavours to do and not


:

to do

never to be deceived in your assent and suspension of

assent.

The

first

of these

is

the primary and most necessary

point

for if it is

with trembling and reluctance that you seek

to avoid falling into evil,

how

can you be said to be making

progress

" It is in

these respects, then, that I ask you to

show me your
muscles,

progress.

If I were to say to
'

an

athlete,

'

Show me your

and he were to say, See here are my dumb-bells,' I should reply, Begone with your dumb-bells What I want to see is, not them, but their effect.' (And yet that is just what you do :) 'Take the treatise On Effort' (you say), and examine me in it.' Slave that but rather how you endeavour to is not what I want to know do or not to do how you desire to have and not to have
'
!

'

how you form your


action
If

plans and purposes and preparations for


all this in

whether you do

harmony with nature


;

or not.

you do so in accordance with nature, show me that you do so, and I will say that you are making progress but if not, begone, and do not merely interpret books, but write similar ones yourAnd what will you gain by it ? Don't you know self besides. that the whole book costs five shillings, and do you think the man who interprets the book is worth more than the book itself costs ? " Never, then, look for the effect (of philosophy) in one place,

and progress towards that effect in another. " Where, then, is progress to be looked for ? If any one of you, giving up his allegiance to things outside him, has devoted himto cultivating and elaborating it so as self entirely to his will to make it at last in harmony with nature, lofty, free, unthwarted,

unhindered, conscientious, self-respectful

if

he has learned that

one who longs for or shuns what


be conscientious nor
free,

is

not in his power can neither

but must be carried along with the

changes and gusts of things

must
:

be at the mercy of those

who can produce or prevent them if, moreover, from the moment when he rises in the morning he keeps watch and guard over these qualities of his soul bathes like a man of honour, eats through all the varying incilike a man who respects himself

dents of each successive hour working out his one great purpose,

VI.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN

ETHICS.

147

as a runner makes all things help his running, and a singing-

master his teaching:


truth
"

this

man

is

making progress
left

in very

this
if,

man

is

one

who has not

home

in vain.

at

But what

is

on the other hand, he is wholly bent upon and labours found in books, and has left home with a view to
tell

acquiring that, I

him

to

go home again at once, and not


:

may have there for the object which has brought him away from home is a worthless one. This only (is worth anything), to study to banish from one's life sorrows and lamentations and Alas and Wretched me and misfortune and failure and to learn what death really is, and exile and imprisonment and the hemlock-draught, so as to be
neglect whatever business he
'

!'

'

!'

able to say in the prison,


so let
it be.'

'

My dear

Crito, if so

it

please the gods,

This
science

new or revived conception of philosophy as of human conduct, as having for its purpose
state of

the

the

actual reformation of mankind, had already led to the

view that in the present

human

nature the study


effort.

and practice

of

it

required special kinds of

It
It

was not only the science but

also the art of life.^

formed, as such, no exception to the rule that


require systematic and habitual training.
training of the muscles

all arts

Just as the

which

is

necessary to perfect

bodily development

is

effected

by giving them one by


effected, not

one an

artificial

and for the time an exaggerated exercise,


moral powers was

so the training of the

by

reading the rules and committing them to memory, but

by giving them a
exercise.

similarly artificial

and exaggerated

A kind of moral gymnastic was necessary.


was
to

The
of

aim of
reason,

it

to bring the passions

under the control

and

bring the will into harmony with the will


Emp.

of God.
1

Sext.

iii.

239.

l2

148

VI.

GREEK AND CHEISTIAN ETHICS.

(1) This special discipline of life

was designated by

the term which was in use for bodily training, askesis


\^
(acr/cjyo-i?).!

It is frequently

used in this relation in Philo.

He

distinguishes three elements in the process of attain-

ing goodness

nature,
who

learning, discipline.^

lie distin-

guishes those

means
literary

of actual

wisdom by works, from those who have only a


discipline themselves in
of
it.^

and intellectual knowledge

He

holds

that the greatest and most

numerous blessings that a


efforts.*

man

can have come from the gymnastic of moral

Its elements are "reading, meditation, reformation, the

memory

of noble ideals, self-restraint, the active practice

of duties:"^ in another passage he adds to ih.B^Q prayer,

and the recognition


indifferent.^

of the indifference of things that are

In the second century, when the idea of


carried out under systematic

moral reformation had taken a stronger hold, this moral


discipline
rules.

was evidently was not


left to

It

a student's option.

He must

undergo hardships, drinking water rather than wine,


sleeping
^

on the ground rather than on a bed; and


wisdom
as Oetiov tc Kal ai/^pw7rtVwv
7rtcrT7j/i7jv,

The

Stoics defined

and philosophy
pldl. 1. 2
2
;

as acrKija-Lv i-n-tTrjSeiov re^viy?, Plutarch (Aetius),


;

j^lcic.

Galen, Hist. Phil. 5


11
(ii.

Diels, Doxogr. Gr. pp. 273, 602.


1 (ii.

De Abraham.
(ii.

9)

de Joseph.

41)

de praem.

ei

poen.

8,

11

416, 418).

Philo

is

quoted because his writings are in some

respects as faithful a photograph of current scholastic


of Epictetus.
It is also possible that
to
(i.
(i.

under Philo's name belong


3
(i.

methods as those some of the writings that stand the same period.
:

Quod

det. potior.

12

198, 199)
591).
(i.

so de congr. erud. cans. 13

529); de mut. nom. 13


*
5

De

congr. erud. cans.


3.

28

542).

Leg. alleg.

(i.

91),

Quis

rcr. div. hcres.

51

(i.

509^

VI.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN ETHICS.


austerities,

149
being

sometimes even subjecting himself to


scourged and bound with, chains.

There was sometimes

ostentation of endurance.
it

Marcus Aurelius says that


he did not show oS with a

he owed

to Eusticus that

striking display either his acts of benevolence or his

moral exercises.^

" If you drink water," says Epictetus

in his Student's Manual,^ "don't take every opportunity of saying, I drink water

And

if

you resolve
it

to

exercise yourself in toil and hardship, do


alone,

for yourself

and not

for the

world outside.

Don't embrace
if

statues (in public, to cool yourself); but


thirst

ever your

become extreme,
it

fill

your mouth with cold water


tell

and put

out again
that

and

no oney

Epictetus him-

self preferred

bodily hardships, but


desire.

against

should be disciplined, not by by the voluntary repression of The true " ascetic " is he who disciplines himself all the suggestions of evil desire ^ "an object of
:

men

desire comes into sight

wait, poor soul

do not straight-

way be
is great,

carried ofi your feet

by

it

consider, the contest

the task

is

divine

it is

for kingship, for free-

dom, for calm,

for undisturbedness.

Think of God
in a storm
for

call

Him
is

to

be your helper and to stand by your

side,

as

sailors call

upon Castor and Pollux


all

yours

a storm, the greatest of

storms, the storm of strong

suggestions that sweep reason away."

In a similar way

Lucian's friend Nigrinus condemns those


to fashion
1

who endeavour

young men
1. 7.
:

to virtue

by great bodily hardships

M.

Aurel.

Enchir. 47
is

cf.

Diss.

3. 14. 4.

In Diss.

3.

12. 17, part of the

above
3

given as a quotation from Apollonius of Tyana.


:

Diss. 2. 18. 27

cf. 3. 2. 1

3. 12. 1

4. 1.

81.

150
rather than

VI.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN ETHICS.


discipline of

by a mingled

body and mind

and Lucian himself says that he knew of some who had


died under the excessive strain.^

This moral gymnastic,


practised

it

was thought, was often best


Conse-

away from

a man's old associations.

quently some philosophers advised their students to leave

home and study

elsewhere.

They went

into "retreat,'^

either in another city or in solitude.

Against this also

there was a reaction.

In a forcible oration on the subject^


monastic
system. ^

Dio Chrysostom argues, as a modern Protestant might


argue,
against the

" Coelum non

animum mutant," he
city to
city.

says, in effect,

when they go from


will find the

Everywhere a man
:

same

hindrances both within and without


a sick

he will be only like

man changing from

one bed to another.

The true
to

discipline is to live in a

crowd and not heed

its noise,

train the soul to follow reason without swerving,

and not

to " retreat '' from that which seems to be the immediate

duty before

us.

The extent
of "retreats"

to

which moral
is

discipline

and the system

went on

uncertain, because they soon

blended, as

we

shall see,

with Christianity, and flowed

with

it

in a single stream.

(2)
ideals

But out of the ideas which they expressed, and the which they held forth, there grew up a class of men
since died out,

which has never

who devoted themselves


to the moral re-

"both by
imitators,
1

their preaching

and living"

formation of mankind.

Individual philosophers had had


ascetic school,

and Pythagoras had founded an

Nigrin. 27.

Ond. XX.

vol.

i.

pp.

288 sqq. (Dind.),

irtpl 'Avaxw/j^^o-ewj.

VI.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN ETHICS.

151

but neither the one nor the other had


in contemporary society.

filled a large place

With

the revived conception


it

of philosophy as necessarily involving practice,

was

necessary that those

who

professed philosophy should be

marked out from the perverted and degenerate world


around them, in their outer as well as in their inner
" The
life
life.

of one

who

practises philosophy," says

Dio

Chrysostom, "is different from that of the mass of men:


the very dress of such a one
is different

from that of
all

ordinary men, and his bed and exercise and baths and

the rest of his living.

man who

in

none of these
as one of

respects difiers from the rest

must be put down


is

them, though he declare and profess that he


sopjier before all

a philo-

Athens or Megara or in the presence of


^

the Lacedaemonian kings."

The
(1)

distinction

was marked

in

two chief ways


atten-

philosopher let his beard grow, like the old


It

Spartans.

was a protest against the elaborate

tion to the person


of the time.

which marked the fashionable society


coarse blanket, usually as his

(2)

A philosopher wore a
It

only dress.

was

at once a protest against the preva-

lent luxury in dress

and the badge of his profession.


see one
is

"Whenever," says Dio Chrysostom, "people


in a philosopher's dress, they consider that he

thus

equipped not as a
to

sailor or a shepherd,

but with a view


to give not

men, to warn them and rebuke them, and

one of them any whit of flattery nor to spare any one of


them, but, on the contrary, to reform them as far as he

Vol.

ii.

p.

240.

152

VI.

GEEEK AND CHRISTIAN ETHICS.


to

possibly can

by talking

them and
this

to

show them who


class of

they are."^

The frequency with which


reformers
is

new

moral

mentioned in the literature of the time shows


it filled.

the large place which


2.

The moral reformation affected the contents of

ethical teaching chiefly

by

raising

them from the sphere


In Epictetus there

of moral philosophy to that of religion.


are

two planes of

ethical teaching.
:

The one

is

that of

orthodox and traditional Stoicism


is

in the other. Stoicism

transformed by the help of religious conceptions, and


it

the forces which led to the practice of

receive the

enormous impulse which comes from the religious emotions.

The one
;

is

summed up

in the

maxim, Follow
stated
fact.

Nature

the other in the maxim. Follow God.


is

On

the lower plane the purpose of philosophy

in various ways, each of

which expresses the same

It is the bringing of the will into

harmony with

nature.
it

It consists in making the " dealing with ideas" what

should be, that


nature.^

is,

in dealing with

them according
of

to

It is the
evil,

thorough study

of the conceptions of

good and

and the right application


It is the

them

to par-

ticular objects.^

endeavour
2

to

make

the will

Vol.

ii.

p.

246.

Enclh

4, 13, 30.

element in the philosophy XPW'-'^ ^cLVTaa-Lwv is an important of Epictetus. Every object that is presented to the mind by either the
3

The

senses or imagination tends to range itself in the ranks of either good


Br evil,

and thereby to

call forth desire or

undesiro

in most

men

this

association of particular objects with the ideas of

good or

evil,

and the

consequent stirring of desire,


tion

is

unconscious, being the result of educa-

and habit

it is

the task of the philosopher to learn to attach the

VI.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN ETHICS.


its action,^ to

153

unth-warted in

take sorrow and disappointto

ment out

of a

man's

life,^

and

change

its

disturbed

The result of the practice of philosophy is happiness.^ The means of attaining that result are marked out by the constitution of human nature itself and the circumstances which
torrent into a calm and steady stream.

surround
desires to

it.

That nature manifests

itself in

two forms,

have or not
stimulated
is

to have, efforts to

do or not to do.^
to the

The one

is

by the presentation
to

mind

of

an object which

judged
is

that of one which

be "good," the other by judged to be " fitting." The one

mainly concerns the individual man in himself, the other


concerns
^'

him

in his relations with other

men.

state according to
fails of

nature" of desire
the

is

that in

The which it

never

gratification,
it

corresponding state of
of its mark.

efi'ort is

that in which

never

fails

Both the

one and the other are determined by landmarks which


nature
us.
itself

has set in the circumstances that surround

The

natural limits of desire are those things that


is

idea of good to what


to

really good, so that desire shall never go forth


:

what

is

either undesirable or unattainable


Diss.
1.

this

is
;

the " right dealing

with ideas."
3. 21.
^

28. 11

1.

30. 4

2. 1.

2. 8.

4;

2.

19.

32;

23;

3.

22. 20, 103.

k^apfioyri

twv

TrpoAr^i/'ewv TOi? CTt [lepovi, Diss. 1. 2. 6; 1. 22. 2, 7;


:

7r/DoA^i/'s are the ideas 9, 12, 16; 4. 1. 41, 44 formed in the mind by association and blending.

2. 11. 4, 7; 2. 17.

'

Diss.
Diss.

1.

1.

31
23.

1. 4.

18;

1. 17.

21

and elsewhere.

1. 4.

The

distinction

between (1)

ope^is, cK/cAicrt?,

the desire to have or

not to have, and (2) opfi-i], a(^opii.rj, the effort to do or not to do, is of some importance in the history of psychology. It probably runs back
to the

Platonic distinction between

to

eTn9v{x,rjTt,Kov

/xepos

and to

154
are in our

VI.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN


:

ETHICS.
is

power

the direction of effort

determined by

our natural relations.

For example
"

^
:

Bear in mind that you are a


?

son.

What

is

involved in being

a son

To consider all that he has to be his father's property, to obey him in all things, never to disparage him to any one, never to say or do anything to harm him, to stand out of his way and give place to him in all things, to help him by all means in
his power.
"
:

Next remember that you are also a brother the doing of what is fitting in this capacity involves giving way to him,
yielding to his persuasion, speaking well of him, never setting

up a

rival claim to

him

in those things that are

beyond the

control of the will, but gladly letting

them go that you may have

the advantage in those things which the will controls.

you are a senator of any city, remember that you are a youth, that you are a youth if an old man, tliat you are an old man if a father, that you are a father. For in each of these cases the consideration of the name you bear will suggest to you what is fitting to be done in relation to it."
"

Next,

if

a senator

if

This view of right moral conduct as being determined

by the natural
to

relations

in

which one man stands to

another, and as constituting

those relations,
in that

what is Fitting in regard had overspread the Eoman world.


jDliilosophical

But

world the

theory which lay


less

behind the conception of the Fitting was


than the conception
itself,

prominent

and two other terms, both of


to the

which were natural and familiar

Eoman mind,

came

into use to express

the idea of

The one was borrowed from the functions which men have to discharge in
it.

the organization of civil government, the other from the


idea of a debt.

The former
1

of these,
2.

*'

officium^''

has not

Diss.

10.

VI.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN ETHICS.

155

passed in this sense outside the Latin language: the


latter,
'-'

debitum^^'' is familiar to

us under its English form

"duty."

On the higher plane


and ends in God.
I will ask

of his teaching Epictetus expresses

moral philosophy in terms of theology.

Human life begins


a sublime religion.

Moral conduct

is

you

to listen to a short cento of passages,

strung
:

loosely together, in
"

which his teaching


Every one

is

expressed

'We

also are

His

offspring.'

of us

may

call

him-

self a

son of God.^

Just as our bodies are linked to the material

universe,^ subject while

we live to the same forces, resolved when same elements,^ so by virtue of reason our souls are linked to and continuous with Him, being in reality parts and offshoots of Hira> There is no movement of which He is not conscious, because we and He are part of one birth and
we
die into the

growth f to Him all hearts are open, all desires known ;'^ as we walk or talk or eat. He Himself is within us, so that we are His
'

shrines, living temples


this

and incarnations of

HimJ

By

virtue of

communion with Him we are in the first rank of created things ? we and He together form the greatest and chiefest and
most comprehensive of
" If
all organizations.^

we

once realize this kinship, no


souls.^*^

mean

or

unworthy
of
it

thought of ourselves can enter our

The sense

forms

a rule and standard for our lives. must be faithful if God be beneficent, cent. If God be highminded, we also must be highminded, doing and saying whatever we do and say in imitation of and union
If
:

God be faithful, we also we also must be benefi-

with Him.^^
did He make us ? He made us, first of all, to complete His conception of the universe He had need for such completion of some beings who
" "
:

Why

1. 9. 6, 1.

13.
1.

i_ i4_ 6,

3. 13, 15.
1.

4
6

14.

6;
11.

17.

27;
7
10

2. 8.

11.

^ 8

U.

6. 2. 8.

2. 14.

2. 8.

1214.

1. 9.

5;

11.

1. 9. 4.

1. 3. 1.

"

2.

14. 13.

156

VI.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN


lie

ETHICS.

should be intelligent.^

made

us, secondly, to

behold and
:

understand and interpret His administration of the universe to be His witnesses and ministers.^ He made us, thirdly, to be happy in ourselves like a true Father and Guardian, he has
:

placed good and evil in those things which are within our
power.^

own
given

What He
it
;

says to each one of us


thyself.'^

is,

'

If thou wilt have

any good, take

from within
there
is

To

this

end

He has

us freedom of will bar our freedom.^


grant that I

We
feel

no power in heaven or earth that can cry out in our sorrow, '0 Lord God,
sorrow
it.*^
;'

may not

and

all

the time

He

has given

us the means of not feeling

He

has given us the power of

bearing and turning to account whatever happens, the spirit of

the

manliness and fortitude and highmindedness, so that the greater difficulty, the greater the opportunity of adorning our
character by meeting
it.
'

If,

for

example, fever comes,

it

brings

from

Him

this message,
real.'

Give
is

me
:

a proof that your moral train-

ing has been


practising

There

a time for learning, and a time for

what we have learnt in the lecture-room we learn and then God brings us to the difficulties of real life and says to
'

us,

It is time

now
:

for the real contest.'

Life

is

in reality an

Olympic festival we are God's athletes, to whom He has given an opportunity of showing of what stuff we are made.'^
"

What

is

our duty to

" It is

simply to follow

Him ? Him :^

to be of
:^

one mind with

Him

:'

to acquiesce in His administration

gives, to resign ourselves to the absence of

The only thought


1

of a good

man

is,

what His bounty what He withholds.^^ remembering who he is, and


to accept

1. 6. 1. 9.

13:

cf.

1.

29. 29.

4;

17.

15;

1.

29. 46,

56;
* 6 3. 2.

2.

16.

33;

4. 7. 7.

3. 24. 2, 3.
6 7 8
4.
1.

24. 3.
16. 13.

82, 90, 100.

1. 24. 1, 1. 12. 5,

2;

1.

29. 33, 36,


15.

46;

3. 10.

7;

4. 4.

32.

8; 1.20.

9 o/ioyvw/xovefv
^

tw

Sew, 2. 16.

42;

2. 19. 26.
j

evapecTTilv ry 6(1^
4. 1. 90,
98.'

5i.oiKrj(Tt, 1.

12. 8

2. 23. 29,

4&

"

VI.

GEEEK AND CHRISTIAN

ETHICS.

157

whence he came, and to Whom he owes his being, to fill the place which God has assigned to him,^ to will things to be as they are, and to say what Socrates used to say, If this be God's will, so be Submission must be thy law thou must dare to lift up it.'^ your eyes to God and say, 'Employ me henceforth for what service Thou wilt I am of one mind with Thee I am Thine I ask not that Thou shouldest keep from me one thing of all that
' :
: : :

Thou hast decreed


'

for me.'^
Fate,

Lead Thou me, God, and Thou,

Thy appointment
Only lead me, I

I await

shall go

With no flagging steps nor slow Even though I degenerate be,

And

consent reluctantly,
less I follow Thee.'^

None the
"

when we keep our eyes fixed on Him, joined in close communion with Him, absolutely consecrated to His commandments. If we will not do it, we suffer loss. There
can only do this
are penalties imposed, not

We

acting law.

If

we

will not take

by a vindictive tyranny, but by a selfwhat He gives under the


the fruit of wretched-

conditions under which

He gives it, we reap

ness and sorrow, of jealousy and fear, of thwarted effort and


unsatisfied desire.^
"

Above

all,

we must

bide His time.

He

has given to every

one of us a post to keep in the battle of life, and we must not His bidding is indicated by circumleave it until He bids us.^
stances.

When He

does not give us what our bodies need,


life is

when

He

sends us where

according to nature

is

impossible, He, the

Supreme Captain,
to us,
'

sounding the bugle


is

for retreat,^

He, the

Master of the Great Household,


Come.'^

opening the door and saying


so,

And when He
:

does

instead of bewailing your

misfortunes, obey and follow


1

come

forth,

not murmuring, but


^

3. 24.

95.

1,

29.

18;
;

4. 4. 21.

2. 16.

42.

* 6

Encliir.
2. 16.

52

Diss.
3. 11.

4. 1.

131
24.

4. 4.

34
4.

a quotation from Cleauthcs.


32.
s

46;

1;
7

3.

42;

4.

1. 9, 16.

1.

29. 29.

2. 13.

U.

168

VI.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN ETHICS.


who
has finished His work, conscious that

as God's servant

He

has no more present need of you.^


" This, therefore,

should take the place of every other pleasure,

the consciousness of obeying God.


to say,

praise

Think what it is to be able 'What others preach, I am doing their praise of virtue is a of me God has sent me into the world to be His soldier and
: :

witness, to tell

men

that their sorrows and fears are vain, that to

a good
sends

man no me at one

evil

can happen whether he live or


:

die.

He

time here, at another time there

He

disciplines

me by
to

poverty and by prison, that I

may

be the better witness

mankind.

With such
:

a ministry committed to me, can I any

longer care in what place I am, or

who my companions

are, or

what they say about me


strain after God,

nay, rather, does not

my

whole nature

His laws and His commandments V"'^

Between the current

ethics of the

Greek world and the


were many

ethics of the earliest forms of Christianity

points both of difference and of contact.

The main point

of difference

was that Christianity


It took over the
Its ultimate

rested morality on a divine

command.

fundamental idea of the Jewish theocracy.^

appeal was not to the reasonableness of the moral law in


itself,

but

to the fact that

God had

enacted

it.

Greek

morality, on the contrary,

was "independent." The idea

that the moral laws are laAVS of


in the Stoics
;

God

is,

no doubt, found

but they are so in another than either the


:

Jewish or the Christian sense


as being expressions of

they are laws of God, not


will,

His personal

but as being

laws of nature, part of the whole constitution of the


world.
1

3.

24.

97;

cf.

3. 5.

810;
2.

4. 10.

14

?,qq.

3,

04.

110114.

Katvos

vo/xos,

Barn.

6,

and

note, in

GebharJt and Ilarnack's

edition.

VI.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN ETHICS.

159

Consequent upon the conception of the moral law


as a positive enactment of God, the breach of moral

law was conceived as

sin.

Into the

early

Christian
It

conception of sin several

elements entered.
it

was

probably not in the popular mind what

was in the

mind

of St. Paul, still less

what

it

became in the mind

But one element was constant. It was a trespass against God. As such, it was on the one hand something for which God must be appeased, and on the other hand something which He could forgive. To the Stoics it was shortcoming, failure, and loss the chief sufferer was the man himself amendment was possible for the future, but there was no forgiveness for the past. Beyond these and other points of dijfference there was a wide area of agreement. The former became accentuated as time went on it was by virtue of the latter
of St. Augustine.
:
: :

that in the earliest ages the

minds

of

many
and

persons had
that,

been predisposed
accepted
it,

to accept Christianity,

having

they tended to fuse some elements of the

new

teaching with some elements of the old.


is

The agreement
and above

most conspicuous in those respects which were the chief


;

aims of the contemporary moral reformation


all in

the importance which was attached to moral con-

duct.

This importance was overshadowed in the later

Christian communities

by the importance which came


:

to

be attached to doctrine

its

existence in the earliest


classes of proofs.
is

communities
1.

is

shown by two
these proofs

The

first of

the place which moral

conduct holds in the earliest Christian writers. The docu-

ments which deal with the Christian


moral.

life

are almost wholly

They

enforce the ancient code of the

Ten Words.

IGO

VI.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN ETHICS.

They

raise those

Ten Words from being the lowest and


and amplifying

most necessary

level of a legal code, to being the expres-

sion of the highest moral ideal, expanding

make them embrace thoughts and desires as well as words and actions. The most interesting of such documents is that which is known as the " Two
them
so as to

Ways."^
Apostles.

It has recently acquired a fresh significance

by having been found

as part of the Teaching of the

It is there prefixed to

the regulations for

ceremonial and discipline which constitute the


of that work.
It proves to

new

part

be a manual of instruction to

be taught to those who were to be admitted as members


of a Christian community.
It

may

thus be considered to

express the current ideal of Christian practice.

In the

"

Way
is

of Life"

which

it

sets forth, doctrine has

no place.

summed up in the two commandments: " First, thou It shalt love God who made thee secondly, thy neighbour
;

as thyself:

whatsoever things thou wouldest not have


do not thou to another." ^

done to

thyself,

These com-

mandments
the Mount.

are amplified in the spirit of the

Sermon on
thou

"Thou

shalt not forswear thyself:


:

shalt not bear false witness

thou shalt not speak evil thou shalt not be doublefor double-tonguedness
is

thou shalt not bear malice

minded nor double-tongued,


snare of death.

Thy

speech shall not be false or hollow,

but

filled to

the full with deed.

Thou

shalt not be covet-

ous, nor rapacious,

nor a hypocrite, nor evilly disposed,

nor haughty
^

thou shalt not take mischievous counsel

See especially Harnack, die Apostellchre und die Jiidischen Beiden

Wege, Leipzig, 1886.


*

Teachinj of the Apodlcs,

1. 1.

VI.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN

ETHICS.

161

against

tliy

neighbour.

Thou

shalt not hate


for

any man,
shalt pray,
soul.^
is
.
.

but some thou shalt rebuke, and

some thou

and some thou

shalt love

more than thine own

My

child,

be not a murmurer, for murmuring


:

on the

path to blasphemy

nor self-willed nor evil-minded, for

from
ing,

all

these things blasphemies are born.

But be thou
and kind, and
lieard.^

meek, for the meek shall inherit the earth: be long-suffer-

and

pitiful,

and

guileless,

and

quiet,

trembling continually at the words which thou hast


.
.
.

Thou shalt not hesitate to give, nor in giving shalt thou murmur for thou shalt know who is the good paymaster of what thou hast earned. Thou shalt not turn away him that needeth, but thou shalt share all things
;

with thy brother and shalt not say that they are thine

own for if ye be fellow-sharers in that which is how much more in mortal things."^
;

immortal,

Another such document


tion

is

the

first

book of the
:

collec-

known

as the Apostolical Constitutions

it

begins at

once with an exhortation to morality.

"Listen

to holy teaching,

ye who lay hold on His

promise, in accordance with the


in

command

of the Saviour,

harmony with

his glorious utterances.


all

Take heed,

ye sons of God, to do
to

thiags so as to be obedient
all

God and

to

be well-pleasiQg in
if

things to the Lord

our God.

For

any one follow


to the will of

after

wickedness and

do things contrary

God, such a one will

be counted as a nation that transgresses against God.


27.
68.

Teaching of the Apustles,


-1.

2.

lUd.

3.

5 Ibid.

7, 8.

1C2

VI.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN


all

ETHICS.

Abstain then from


ness."^
2.

covetousness and unrighteous-

The second proof

is

afforded

by the

place which
life.

discipline

held in contemporary Christian

The
Iso-

Christians were
lation

drawn together

into communities.

was discouraged and soon passed away.

Christian was to be a
basis of the

member

of a

community.

community was not only a


It

To be a The common belief,


of the

but also a common practice.

was the task

community

as an organization to keep itself pure.

The

offences against

which
fell

it

had

to

guard were not only the

open crimes which


law, but also and

within the cognizance of public


especially sins of moral conduct

more

and

of the inner life.

The

qualifications

which in
officers,

later

times were the ideal standard for church


also in the
earliest times the ideal

were

standard for ordi-

nary members.

" If any

man who

has sinned sees the

bishop and the deacons free from fault, and the flock

abiding pure,

first

of all he will not venture to enter

into the assembly of God, being smitten

conscience

but

if,

secondly, setting lightly

by his own by his sin

he should venture

to enter,

he will forthwith be taken to

task .... and either be punished, or being admonished

by the pastor will be drawn

to repentance.

For looking

round upon the assembly one by one, and finding no


blemish either in the bishop or in the ranks of the people
^ Const. Apost 1. This may be supplemented 1, p. 1, ed. Lagarde. by the conception of Christianity as a new law in Barnabas ii. 6, see Thomasius, Justin passim, Clem. Alex. E. T. i. 97, 120, 470 Dogmengescli. i. 110 sqq.
:

VI.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN ETHICS.

163

Tinder him, with

shame and many

tears

he will go out

in peace, pricked in heart,


cleansed,

and the flock will have been


tears to
:

and he will cry with


sin,

God and

will

repent of his

and will have hope


not lost,"^

and the whole


In other cases
:

flock beholding his tears will be

admonished that he who


the

has sinned and repented


expulsion was a

is

solemn and formal act


:

sinful

member was
sion.

cast into outer darkness

re-admission was

accompanied with the same

rites as the original

admis-

In other words, the earliest communities endeaof Christian life,

voured, both in the theory which they embodied in their

manuals
enforced

and in the practice which they

by

discipline,

to realize

what has
of

since

been
a

known

as the Puritan ideal.


of saints.

Each one

them was

community

"Passing their days upon


^

earth,

they were in reality citizens of heaven."

The
and

earthly
ever-

community
was the
sitting

reflected in all but its glory

its

lastingness the life of the

"new

Jerusalem."

Its bishop

visible representative of Jesus Christ himself


of heaven,

on the throne

with the white-robed

members were the "elect," the "holy ones," the "saved." "Without were the dogs, and the sorcerers, and the murderers, and the idolaters, and every one that loveth and maketh a lie:" within were "they which were written in the Lamb's book of life." To be a member of the community was to be in
elders round

him:

its

reality,

and not merely in conception, a child

of

God and

heir of everlasting salvation: to be excluded from the

community was

to pass again into the outer darkness,

the realm of Satan and eternal death.


1

Const. Aj^osf. 2. 11, p. 22.

-^j^^

^d Diogn.

5.

1G4

VI.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN

ETHICS.

Over these

earliest

communities and the theory which

they embodied there passed, in the last half of the second


century and the
change.
first

half of the third,

an enormous

The

processes of the change and its immediate

causes are obscure.

The

interests of

contemporary writers

are so absorbed with the struggles for soundness of doctrine,

as to leave but little


life.

room

for a record of the


last stages of those

struggles for purity of

In the

struggles, the party which endeavoured to preserve the

ancient ideal was treated as schismatical.


of visible communities

The aggregate

was no longer

identical with the

number

of those

party framed a

who should be saved. The dominant new theory of the Church as a corpus
it

permixtum^ and found support for


selves.

in the Gospels them-

Morality became subordinated to belief in Chris-

tianity

by the same

inevitable drift

by which
its

practice

had been superseded by theory in Stoicism. In both the production of this change and
net result of the active forces which
it

further

developments Greece played an important part.

The

brought to bear
of a

upon Christianity was, that the attention


of Christian

majority

men was

turned to the intellectual as dislife.

tinguished from the moral element in Christian

And

when

the change was effected,

it

operated in two further

ways, which have survived in large and varied forms to


the present day.
1.

The

idea of moral reformation had from the

first

men with a varying tenacity There were some men who had a higher moral
seized diflferent
^ Side by had found a

of grasp.^

ideal than
ethics,

side witli the average ethics

were the Pauline

which

certain

lodgment in some.

VI.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN ETHICS.

165

others

there were some whose natures were stronger

there were some to


tion of

whom
from

moral

life

was not the perfecspirit

human

citizenship,

but the struggle of the


its

to disentangle itself

material environment, and

to rise by contemplation to fellowship with God.

There

are proofs of the existence in the very earliest Christian

communities of those who endeavoured to live on a


higher plane than their fellows.

Abstinence from mar-

riage and from animal food were urged and practised as

" counsels of perfection."

In some communities there


counsels of perfection obli-

was an attempt
gatory.

to

make such

In the majority of communities, though they


of

were part
bers, they

"the whole yoke

of the

Lord,"^ and were


all

specially enjoined at certain times

upon

church

mem-

were not

of universal or constant obligation.

Those who habitually practised them were recognized as


a church within the Church.

The

practice of
to

them was
in

known by

name which we have seen


It
life as

be

common
was that

the Greek philosophical schools.

was

relative to the
It of

conception of

an

athletic contest.

bodily training or gymnastic exercise

(aV/cj/o-i?).^

The
element

secession of the Puritan party left


still

much
it

of this

within the great body of confederated comthe end of the third century

munities.

At

became

important both within them and without.


creased, partly

It

was

in-

by the growing
partly

influence of the ideas

which found
of society
^

their highest expression outside Christianity


;

in Neo-Platonism
itself,

by the growing complexity

the strain and the despair of an age


6. 2.

Teaching of the Apostles,

'

Of

a type of Gnosticism, Harnack, Dogmengesch. 202.

166

VI.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN


partly also

ETHICS.

of decadence

by the necessity

of finding a

new

outlet,

wlien Christianity became a legal religion,

for the passionate love of

God which had


It

led

men

to a

sometimes ecstatic martyrdom.


parallel

was joined by the


It

tendency among professors of philosophy.

soon took a

new

form.

Hitherto those

who

followed

counsels of perfection lived in ordinary society, undis-

tinguished except by their conduct from their fellow-

men.

The

ideal " Gnostic" of

Clement

of

Alexandria
"acting the

takes his part in ordinary

human

affairs,

drama

of life
is

which God has given him


to

to play,

knowing

both what

be done and what

is to

be endured."^

Eut
life

early in the fourth century the practice of the ascetic


in CTiristianity

came

to be

shown

in the

same out-

ward way, but with a more marked emphasis, as the It was indeed known as similar practice in philosophy.
philosophy.^
it

It

was most akin

to Cynicism, with

which

had sometimes already been confused, and its badges were the badges of Cynicism, the rough blanket and the
unshorn
hair.

To wear the blanket and


and
sanctity.

to let the hair

grow was

to profess divine philosophy, the

higher

life of

self-discipline
1

It

was

to claim to stand

on

Strom.

7. 11.
3.

2 e.g.

Euseb. Dem. Ev.

"

Not only old men under Jesus Christ


it

practise this

mode
of

of philosojjhy, but

would be hard

to say how-

many thousands
it

were, of the

women throughout the whole world, priestesses, as God of the universe, having embraced the highest
for

wisdom, rapt with a passion

heavenly knowledge, have renounced


flesh,

the des/re of children according to the

care to their soul, have given themselves

and giving their whole up wholly to the Supreme


29
Sozom.
6.

King and God


and
virginity."

of the universe, to practise (aa-K7yo-acr^at) perfect purity

So

also id. de Vit. Constant. 4. 26,

33,

of the Syrian monks.

VI.

GKEEK AND CHRISTIAN ETHICS.

167

a higher level and to be working out a nobler ideal than

average Christians.
development.
times found
life

The

practice soon received a further

Just as ordinary philosophers had somein society to be intolerable

and had gone

into "retreat," so the Christian philosophers

began

to

withdraw altogether from the world, and


lives

to live their
solitude.

of self-discipline

and contemplation in

The

retention of the old

names shows the continuity of


practising discipline,
aV/cjyo-i?,

the practice. They were


or philosophy,
society, they

still

(piXoaocpia.
still

So far as they retired from


ava-^^wpelv^

were

said " to go into retreat,"

whence the current appellation

oiava-^^wprjral^ ''anchorets."

The

place of their retreat was a "school of discipline,"


or a "place for reflection,"
(ppovria-Triptov,'^

a(rKt]T}]piovj

To

these were soon added the

new names which were

rela-

tive to the fact that moral discipline

was usually practised


of their retirement

in solitude.
'"

Those who retired from the world were


ixova-^^ol^

solitaries,"

and the place

was a "place
tice

for solitude,"

ixovaary'ipiov.

When
for

the pracit

was once firmly rooted in Christian


ways

soil,

was

largely developed in independent

which Greece

was not primarily responsible, and which therefore cannot


properly be described here; but the independence and

enormous overgrowth of these

later forms cannot

wipe

away the memory


to

of the fact that to Greece,

more than

any other

factor,

was due the place and

earliest conall

ception of that sublime individualism which centred

a man's
^

efibrts

on the development of his


i.

spiritual

life,

a.arKrjrripiov,

Socrat.

11

distinguished from /iovacrrr^piov, ibid.


:

4. 23, as

the smaller from the larger

(}>povrurTi]piov,

Evagr.

i.

21.

168

VI.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN


liim

ETHICS.
to

and withdrew

from his fellow-men in order

bring

him near to God. 2. It was inevitable that when the Puritan party had left the main body, and when the most spiritually-minded
of those

who remained detached themselves from the


life

common

of their brethren,

there should be a de-

terioration

in

the

average moral
It

conceptions

of

the-

Chi-istian Churches.

was

also inevitable that those

conceptions should be largely shaped

by

Grreek influences.

The Pauline

ethics vanished

from the Christian worlds

For the average members


average citizens of the

of the churches

were now the

empire,

educated

by Greek

methods, impregnated with the dominant ethical ideas.

They accepted Christian ideas, but without the enthusiasm which made them a transforming force. As in regard ta
metaphysics, so also in regard to ethics, the frame of

mind

which had been formed by education was stronger than


the

new

ideas

which

it

absorbed.
:

The current

ideals re-

mained, slightly raised

the current rules of conduct

continued, with modifications.


tions of righteousness

Instead of the concepthere

and

holiness,

was the old


namely,

conception of virtue

instead of the code of morals which


in
this

was "briefly comprehended

saying,

Thou

shalt love thy neighbour as tliyself," there

was

the old enumeration of duties.

At the end

of the fourth

century the

new

state of things

by

ecclesiastical writers.

was formally recognized Love was no more " the handof Milan, formulated
is

book of divine philosophy:"^ the chief contemporary


theologian of the West,

Ambrose

the current theory in a book which


1

the more important

Clem. Alex. P(xdacj.

3. 11.

YI.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN ETHICS.

ICD

because

it

not merely expresses the ideas of his time and

seals the proof of their prevalence,

but also became the

basis of the moral philosophy of the

Middle Ages.

But

the book
of the

is less

Christian than Stoical.^

It is a recJiaiiffee

book which Cicero had compiled more than three


It is Stoical,,
\

centuries before, chiefly from Pancetius.

not only in conception, but also in detail.


virtue the highest good.
to

It

It make& makes the hope of the life


Its ideal

come a subsidiary and not a primary motive.


life
is

of

happiness

it

holds that a happy


it is

life is

life

according to nature, that


it is

realized

by virtue, and

that

capable of being realized here on earth.

Its virtues

are the ancient virtues of

and temperance.
of each of
moralists.

It

wisdom and justice, courage tinges each of them with a Christian,


;

or at least with a Theistic colouring

but the conception


to the

them remains what

it

had been
wise

Greek

Wisdom,
is

for example, is

Greek wisdom, with

the addition that no

man can be
justice,

who
is

is

ignorant of

God:
its

justice

Greek

with the addition that


helped by the
.

subsidiary

form of beneficence

Christian society.

The

victory of

Greek

ethics

was complete.

While

Christianity

was being transformed

into a system of doc-

trines, the Stoical jurists at the imperial court

were slowly
ethics of

elaborating a system of personal rights.

The

the Sermon on the Mount, which the earliest Christian

communities endeavoured to carry into practice, have been


transmuted by the slow alchemy of history into the ethics
P. Ewald, der Einfluss der stoisch-ciceronianischen Moral auf . . ; Draiseke in the Rivista difilologia, Ann. v. 1875-6.
^
.

Ambrosms, Leipzig, 1881

170
of

VI.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN

ETHICS.

Eoman

law.

The

basis of Cliristiaii society is not


Stoical.

Christian, but

Eoman and

A fusion of the Eoman


is

conception of rights with the Stoical conception of relations

involving reciprocal actions,

in possession

of

practically the

whole

field of civilized society.

The

transis

mutation
so

is

so complete that the

modem

question

not

much whether
The

the ethics of the

Sermon on the Mount


would be which formulate in

are practicable, as whether, if practicable, they


desirable.
socialistic theories

modern language and justify by modern conceptions such an exhortation as " Sell that thou hast and give to the
poor," meet with no less opposition within than without

the Christian societies.

The conversion

of the

Church

to Christian theory must precede the conversion of the

world to Christian practice.

working in

worked

in

But meanwhile there is Christianity the same higher morality which the ancient world, and the maxim. Follow

God, belongs to a plane on which Epictetus and Thomas


h.

Kempis meet.

Lecture VII.

GEEEK AND CHEISTIAN THEOLOGY.


I.

The Ceeator.

Slowly there loomed through the mists Greek thought the consciousness of one God.
It

of earlier

came with the sense


of earth

of the unity of the world.

That sense had not always been awakened.

The varied

phenomena
into

and sea and sky had not always

been brought under a single expression.

The groups

which the mind tended

to arrange them were con-

ceived as separate, belonging to different kingdoms and


controlled

by independent

divinities.

It

was by the

unconscious alchemy of thought, working through successive generations, that the separate groups

came

to

be
^

combined into a whole and conceived as forming a universe.


It

came

also

with the sense of the order of the world.

The sun which day by day rose and set, the moon which month by month waxed and waned, the stars which year by year came back to the same stations in the sky, were like a marshalled army moving in obedience to a
fixed

command.

There was order, not only above, but

also beneath.

The

sea,

which

for all its storms

and

172

VII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.


its

murmurings, could not pass


after spring the
after

bounds, the earth upon


failed,

which seed-time and harvest never

but spring

buds burst into blossom, and summer

summer

the blossom ripened into fruit, were part

of the same great system.

The conception was

that not

merely of a universe, but of a universe moving in obedience to a law.

The

earliest

form of the conception

is

probably that of Anaxagoras, which was formulated by


a later writer in the expression,
are infinite, the origin of

"The

origins of matter

This conception of
as
it

movement and birth is one."^ an ordered whole was intertwined,


itself,

slowly elaborated

with one or other of two


it

kindred conceptions, of which one had preceded


the other grew with
it.

and

The one was the


be called natural,

sense of personality.

By

a transferit

ence of ideas which has been so universal that


all

may

things that
stars
life
life.

move have been invested


rivers

with personality.

The
life,

and

were persons.

Movement meant
application of

and

meant everywhere someIt

thing analogous to

human

was by an inevitable

the conception that

when
it

the

sum

of

movements was conceived


and the unity
Person.
of their

as a whole,

should be also

conceived that behind the totality of the phenomena

movements there was a


of mind.
It

single

The other was the conception


that of bodily powers.
revelation,
^

was a con-

ception which had but slowly disentangled itself from


It as

was

like the preaching of a

and almost

fruitful,
f.

when Epicharmus

Theophrastus ap. Simplic. inj^hys.

6 (Diels, Dozograplii Graeci,

p. 479).

YII.

GREEK 4ND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

173
:

proclaimed
it is

"It

is

not the eye that sees, but the mind


all

not the ear that hears, but the mind:


It

things

except mind are blind and deaf."

was the mind that


and the Person
each one of us

not only saw but thought, and that not only thought

but willed.

It alone

was the

real self:
it

who

is

behind nature or within


is

was

like the personality

which

behind the bodily

activities of

His essence was mind.


There was one God.

The gods

of the old

mythology

were passing away,

like a splendid pageantry of clouds

moving
and
said,^

across the horizon to be absorbed in the clear

infinite heaven.

"He

has

"But though God is one," it was many names, deriving a name from each
is of

of the spheres of His government

Son of Kronos, that


from eternity
to

Time, because

He is He

called the

continues

eternity;

and Lightning -God, and

Thunder-God, and Eain-God, from the lightnings and


thunders and rains ; and Fruit-God, from the fruits (which

he sends)
tects);

and City-God, from the


births,

cities

(which he pro-

and the God of

and homesteads, and

kinsmen, and families, of companions, and friends, and


armies
after all

God, in short, of heaven and earth, named

forms of nature and events as being Himself the cause of all." " There are not different gods among
different peoples," says Plutarch, 3

and Greek gods, nor gods


voos opy KOL voos d.KOVi'

of

"nor foreign gods the south and gods of the


Koi TVcftXa, quoted in Plut.

TaXXa KW^a
1.

de

fort. 3, p. 98,

de Alex. magn. fort.

3, p.

336, and elsewhere

Lucret. 3. 36; Cic.


2

Tmc. Disp.

20.

Pseudo-Arist. de mtcndo,

7, p.

401

a.

De

Isid. et Osir. 67, p. 378.

174

Vir.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

north; but just as sun and


sea are

moon and sky and

earth,

and

common

to all

mankind, but have different names

among different races, so, though there be one Eeason who orders these things and one Providence who administers

them

....

there are different honours and

appellations

among

different races;

and men use con-

secrated symbols, some of


clear,

them obscure and some more


on the path to the
;

so leading
:

their thoughts

Divine

but

it is

not without risk

for

some men, wholly

missing their foothold,

have slipped into superstition,

and

others,

avoiding the slough of superstition, have

in their turn fallen over the precipice of atheism."

In the conception

of

God

as it thus uncoiled itself in

Greek

history, three strands of

thought are constantly


thought of

intertwined

the thought

of a Creator, the

a Moral Governor, and the thought of a Supreme or

Absolute Being.

It is desirable to trace the history of

each of these thoughts, as far as possible, separately,

and

to consider their separate effects of Christian theology.


first
:

upon the developwill

ment

The present Lecture

deal mainly with the

the two following Lectures

with the other two.

It

was

at a comparatively late

stage in

its

history

that

Greek thought came


all things.

to the conception of a
first

begin-

ning of

The conception was


in

formulated
b.c.^

by Anaximander,
earlier conception

the

sixth

century

The

was that

of a chaos, out of

which gods

and
^

all

things alike proceeded.


ap.

The
f.

first

remove from
p.

Theophrast

Simplic.

in phys.

6 (Diels,

476), tt/jwtos

TovTo Tovvofia

Ko/Aio-as

T^s a/3x^s

so Hippol. Philosoph. 1. 6.

VII.

GREEK

AOT) CHRISTIAK THEOLOGY.

175

that earlier conception

was hylozoism, the

belief that life

and matter were the same.

was not yet evolved.


of

When

it

thought began to diverge.

The conception of mind was evolved, two lines The one, following the

conception of

human

personality as absolutely single,

conceived of both reason and force as inherent in matter


it is

the theory which

following the

known as 3onism. The other, conception of human personality as a


is

separable compound, body and soul, conceived of reason

and force as external


is

to matter

it is

the theory which

known
1.

as Dualism.

These two theories run through

all

subsequent Greek philosophy.

The

chief philosophical expression of

Monism was

Stoicism.

The

Stoics followed the lonians in believing

that the world consists of a single substance.

followed Heraclitus in believing that

They the movements and

modifications of that substance are due neither to a blind

impulse from within nor to an arbitrary impact from


without.
It

moved, he had thought, with a kind of


fire

rhythmic motion, a

was kindling and being quenched with regulated limits of degree and time.^
that
is

The substance
is

one, but

a force that acts

immanent and inherent in it with intelligence. The antithesis

between the two was expressed by the Stoics in various


forms.

was sometimes the bare and neutral contrast For the Passive was of the Active and the Passive.
It

sometimes substituted Matter, a term which, signifying,


as it originally does, the timber
^

which a carpenter uses

Heraclit. ap. Clem. Alex. Strom. 5. 14, Koa-fiov tov avTov dravTajv
iiroirjcrev'

ouT Tis ^ewv owTC avOpuiTTOiv

dW

rfv

dei Kat ecrrat irvp

du^wov,

aTTTOfxtvov fikrpa koI d7rocr(SVVVjJ.evov [MeTpa.

176

yil.

GREEK AND CHEISTIAN THEOLOGY.

for the purposes of his craft, properly belongs to another

order of ideas

and

for the

Active was frequently subit

stituted the term Logos^ which, signifying as

does,

on

the one hand, partly thought and partly will, and, on

the other hand, also the expression of thought in a sentence and the expression of will in a law, has no single

equivalent in

modem

language.

But the majority

of

Stoics used neither the colourless term the Active, nor

the impersonal term the Logos.

The Logos was vested

with personality:

the antithesis was between matter

and God.

This latter term was used to cover a wide

The two terms of the antithesis being regarded as expressing modes of a single substance, separable in thought and name but not in reality, there
range of conceptions.

was a natural

drift of

some minds towards regarding

mode of matter as a mode


as a

God

matter, and of others towards regarding


of God.

The former conceived

of

Him

as the natura naturata: "Jupiter est

quodcunque vides

quodcunque moveris."^

The latter conceived of Him as This became the governing conthe natura naturans. ception. He is the sum of an infinite number of rational
forces

selves

which are continually striving to express themthrough the matter with which they are in union.
through them and in them working
to realize

He

is

an

end.

The
is

teleological idea controls the

whole conception.

He

always moving with purpose and system, and

always thereby producing the world.


all divine,

The products are


In His purest
in union with

but not
is

all

equally divine.

essence,

He

the highest form of

mind

the most attenuated form of matter.


^

In the lowest form

LMcan, Phars.

9.

579.

VII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

177

of

His essence,

He

is

the cohesive force which holds

together the atoms of a stone.

Between these two


Nearest of
soul.

poles

are infinite gradations of being.

all to

the

purest essence of
especial sense

God

is

the
:

human

It is in

an

His offspring

it is

described

by the metalife of its

phors of an emanation or outflow from Him, of a sapling

which
mother

is

separate from and yet continues the

parent tree, of a colony in which some members of the


state

have

settled.^

If all this

were expressed in
it

modem

terms, and

by
is

the help of later conceptions,

would probably be most

suitably gathered into the proposition that the world

the self-evolution of God.

Into such a conception the


:

idea of a beginning does not necessarily enter


sistent

it is

con-

with the idea of an eternal process of differentia-

tion

that

which
:

is,

always has been, under changed and


is

changing forms
cosmogonical
:

the theory

cosmological rather than


it is

it

rather explains the world as


its origin.

than

gives an account of
2.

The

chief philosophical expression of

Dualism was
1.

airoppoia,

M. Anton.
5.

2.

aTrocnraa-fia,

Epict. Diss.

14. 6

2.

8.

11; M. Anton.

The
51
rrj'i

de mund. opif. 46 (i. 32). co-ordination of these and cognate terms in Philo is especially

27:

aTrotKia, Philo,

important in view of their use in Christian theology


(i.

de mund. opif.

35), Tras av^pcuTTO? Kara, ixkv rrjv Sidvoiav WKCtcorat deCco Aoyw,
i]

fxaKapias <^wecos eKfiayelov

aTrocnraa-fMa

-q

dTravya(rfJ.a "veyovtus

he considers the term iKfiayeiov


TTys

to

be more appropriate to theology,


-q

Tov TravTos

'/'I'X^'

d7ro(r7rao-/ia

oirep

ocrnoTepov eiTreiv tois

Kara

M.(jDV(xqv (juXocrocjiovcrLV, ik6vos ^tas eK/xayetov c/i^epes,

de mutat. nom.

39

(i.

612)

and he

is

careful to guard against

an inference that

a.Tr6cnra(TfJLa

implies a breach of continuity between the divine and the

human
KIT

soul, aTroo-Tracr/xa rjv ov Statperov' Te/Averat

yap ovSev tou deiov


24
(i.

aTrdpTrja-iv,

dXXa

/;Iofov eKTetverai,

quod

det, pot. insid.

209).

178

Vir.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

Platonism.

Plato followed Anaxagcaas in believing that


acts

mind is separate from matter and beyond him in founding upon this
distinction

upon

it

he went

separation a universal

between the

real

and the phenomenal, and

between God and the world. God was regarded as being


outside the world.
potential

was that
moulds

The world was in its origin only being (to fxt] 6V). The action of God upon it of a craftsman upon his material, shaping it as
it

a carpenter shapes wood, or moulding


clay.

as a statuary

In so acting,

He

acted with reason, follow-

ing out thoughts in His mind.

Sometimes His reason,


a group of

or His mind, is spoken of as being itself the fashioner of

the world. ^

Each thought shows material objects. Such objects, so

itself in

far as

they admit of

being grouped,

may be viewed

as imitations or embodias a

ments of a form or pattern, existing either


in the
/

thought

mind of the Divine Workman, or as a force proceeding from His mind and acting outside it. As the conception of these forms was developed more and more,
they tended to be regarded in the latter light rather than in the former.

They were cosmic

forces

which

had the power of impressing themselves upon matter.

They were less types than causes. They came midway between God and the rude material of the universe, so that its changing phenomena were united with an unchanging element. They were themselves grouped in a vast gradation, reaching its highest point in the Form of Perfection, which was higher than the Form of Being. The highest and most perfect of types is conceived as the
^

Pldleh. IG, p. 28

1',

vovv koX

<f>p6vr)criv

Ttva

6avjj.a(rTi'jv

iu

tlia

post-Platonic Ei>inomis, p. 98Gc, Aoyos o ttcivtwv daoraTos.

VII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.


of forces.
it is

179

most powerful and most active


rate cosmology of the Timceus^

In the elabospoken of as

further conceived as

a person.

The

creative energy of

God

is

the Demiurgus^

and employed subordinate agents in the construction of the The matter upon which the Demiurgus actual world.
ideal world,

who

himself

made an

or his agents
iDcing,^

work

is

sometimes conceived as potential


receiving
qualities

the bare

capacity of

and

forms, and sometimes as chaotic substance which was

reduced to order.^

The agents were gods who, having


to create living

been themselves created, were bidden


beings, capable of growth and decay.^

The

distinction

between the two spheres of

creation, that of a world in

which nothing was imperfect


^

since

it

was the work

of a

The

best account of Plato's complex, because progressive, theory


is

of matter

that of Siebeck, Plato's Lehre von der Materie, in his

UntersucJiungen der Fliilosopliie der Griechen, Freiburg

im Breisg. 1888.
schools,

The

conception of
is

it

which was current in the Platonist

and
is

which

therefore important in relation to Christian philosophy,

,<jiven in

the Placita of Aetius, ap. Stob.


1.

Ed.

1.

11 (Diels,

p. 308),

and

Hippol. Philosoph.

19.
Trai/

Plat. Ti77l, p. 30,

ocrov rjv

oparov rrapaXajSwu ovk

rjcrvx^Lav

avov

aAAa
3

Kivovixevov 7rAi;/t/ieAc3s /cai droLKTWi els rct^iv avrb yjyayev k rrjs

ara^tas.

In Tim.

p. 41,

the Oeol OeQv are addressed at length by o roSe to


8r][ji.iovpy6s)
:

3ra;/ yevvrjcras (

=o

the most pertinent words


TpeTreade Kara

are,

iv

ovv
ryv

dvqTo. T y TO T

TTtti/

oVtws

ciTTav y,

cjiva-Lv ii/iets Itti

TOJv {'wcov oyixcQvpycav, fiifiov/JLevot ti]V ep-yv 8vvap,Lv rrepl

ryv vp.wv yevecnv.

The whole
Creator

theory

is

summed up by
artist

tion to his translation of the Timcaus (Plato, vol.


is like

Professor Jowett in the Introduc" The ii. p. 470)


:

human

who

frames in his mind a plan which he

executes

by means of his servants. Thus the language of philosophy, which speaks of first and second causes, is crossed by another sort of phraseology, God made the world because he was good, and the demons
'

ministered to him.'"

n2

180

VII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOI OGY.

Perfect Being, and that of a world which was full of imperfections as being the
as

work

of created beings, camCy

we

shall see, to

be of importance in some phases of

Christian thought.

It

was

inevitable,

in the syncretism

which results
an age

when an age
of

of pliilosophical reflection succeeds

of philosophical origination, that these two great drifts

thought should tend in some points to approach each

other.

The elements

in

them which were most readily

fused together were the theories of the processes

by
the

which the actual world came

into being,

and

of

nature of the forces which lay behind those processes.

In Stoicism, there was the theory of the one


Logos expressing forms
:

Law

or

itself in

an

infinite variety of material

in Platonism, there

was the theory

of the

one

God, shaping matter according to an


patterns.

infinite variety of

In the one, the processes of nature were the

operations of active forces, containing in themselves the

law

of the forms

in

which they exhibit themselves^


each of them a portion of the

self-developing seeds,

one Logos which runs through the whole.^


other, they

In the

were the operations

of the infiaiitely various

and eternally active energy of God, moving always in


the direction of His thoughts, so that those thoughts
1

Aoyot cnrepfxariKoi, frequently in Stoical writings,

e.g. in

the defigiven in

nition of the TTvp rex^i-Koi',

which

is

the base of

all things, as

the Placita of Aetius, reproduced


Dials, p. 30G,
iiJ.irepuik-)]cjioS

by Plutarch, Eusebius, and Stobreus, Trdvras Tovs cnrepfxaTLKOvs Aoyoi'S Kad ovs

(Kaa-ra Kad'

lfj.apiJ.V)]v

yiviTai.
is

The

best account of this important

clement in later Stoicism

in Heinze, die Lchre

vom Logos

in der

(jriechischen Pliilosophie, 1872, pp.

110 sqq.

VII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

181

miglit

themselves be conceived as the causes of the

operations. 1

In both the one theory and the other, the

processes

were sometimes regarded in their aj)parent

multiplicity,

and sometimes in their underlying unity

and

in both also the unity

was expressed sometimes by

the impersonal term Logos^ and sometimes


sonal term God.

by the

per-

But while the monism of the Stoics, by laying stress upon the antithesis between the two phases of the one
substance, was tending to dualism, the dualism of the
Platonists,

by laying

stress

upon the

distinction

between

the creative energy of God and the form in the mind of God which His energy embodied in the material universe,

was tending
two

to introduce a third factor into the concep-

tion of creation.

It

became common

to speak, not of

principles, but of three

God, Matter, and the Form,

Hence came a new fusion of conceptions. The Platonic Forms in the mind of God, conceived, as
or Pattern.2

they sometimes were, as causes operating outside Him,


^

Hence the
Kal

definition

which Aetius gives


toutwv

iSea kcrrlv ovcria da-wfia-

Tos, avTTj fxev v<f>(Trwara Ka6' avTrjv

elKOvi^ovcra Se ras

dfj-opcfyovi

vAas
1.

atTi'a yivojxkv)] ttJs

Set^tws, ap. Plut, de plac. philob'.

Stob.
2

10; 'Euseh. proip. evang. 15. 45; with additions and differences in Ed. 1. 12 (Diels, p. 308).

The

three apx"' are expressed

by varying but

identical terms

God, Matter, and the Form (t'Sea), or the By Whom, From What, In view of What (w(/)' ov, e^ ov, irpos o), in the Placita of Aetius,
1. 3. 21, ap. Plut.

de placit. pMl.

and

in Timseus Locrus, de an.

1. 3, Stob. Ed. 1. 10 (Diels, p. 288), mundi 2 (MuUach F P G 2. 38) God,


:

Matter, and the Pattern (TrapaSeiyiMo), Hippol. Philosoph.


Irris. Gent. Phil. 11
:

1.

19,

Herm.

the Active (to iroioGv), Matter, and the Pattern,

Alexand. Aphrod. ap. Simplic. in phys. f. 6 (Diels, p. 485), where Simplicius contrasts this with Plato's own strict dualism.

182

YII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.


less identified

were more or

with the Stoical Logoi, and,

being viewed as the manifold expressions of a single


Logos, were expressed

by a singular rather than

a plural

term, the Logos rather than the Logoi of God.


It is at this point that the writings of Philo of special importance.

become

They gather

together, without

fusing into a symmetrical


theories
of the past,

system, the two dominant

and they contain the seeds of

nearly
It
is

all

that afterwards

grew up on Christian

soil.

possible that those writings cover a


is

much

larger
if

period of time than

commonly supposed, and that

we we

could find a

key

to their chronological arrangement,

should find in them a perfect bridge from philoso-

phical Judaism to Christian theology.

And

even without

such a key

we

are able to see in

tion of the processes of thought that

them a large representawere going on, and

can better understand by the analogies which they offer

both the tentative theories and those that ultimately

became dominant

in the sphere of Christianity.

It

is-

consequently desirable to give a brief account of

the'

view which they present.

The ultimate cause


nature of God.
ferent sense,

of the

world

is to

be found in the

As
is

in Plato, though perhaps in a dif-

God

regarded as good.

He was
make
it

impelled to

make

the world

By His goodness He was able ta

by

virtue of His power.

" If any one wished

to search out the reason

why

the universe was made, I


if

think that he would not be far from the mark

he were,

to say, what, in fact, one of the ancients said, that the

Father and Maker

is

good, and that being good

He

did

not grudge the best kind of nature to matter

[ova-ln)

VII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

183
it

whicli of itself

had nothing
all

excellent,

though
again:

was

capable of becoming
soul once told

things."^

And

"My
with a

me

more

serious story (than that of the


seized, as it often was,

Greek mythology), when


divine ecstasy
existing

It told

me

that in the one really

God

there are two chief and primary faculties.

Goodness and Power, and that by Goodness


the universe, and by

He

begat

Power He governs it."^ God is thus the Creator, the Fashioner and Maker of the world, its Builder and Artificer.^ But when the conception of
His
is

relation to the world is

more precisely examined,

it

found to be based upon a recognition of a sharp

dis-

tinction

between the world

of

thought and that of sense

and

to

be monistic in regard to the one, dualistic in

regard to the other.


a fountain, proceed
all

God

is

mind.

From Him,

as

from

forms of mind and reason.

Eeason,

whether unconscious in the form of natural law, or conscious in the form of

human
5)
:

thought,

is like

a river that

De mundi
Se

opif. 5

(i.

cf.

Plat.

Tim.

p.

30

(of

God),

o.yaBo<s tjv

dyaOw

ovSels Trepl ovSevo? ovSeiroTe

iyytyverat

<f)d6i'os'

tovtov 8

CKTos (ov TTccvra oTifidXicTTa kfBovXrjd-q yivecrOaL irapaTrX-qa-ta auT^. 2


3

De

cherub. 9

(i.

144)

cf. ih.

35

(i.

162).

The most frequent word


de con/us.
(i.

is S-qixiovpyo'?,

but several others are used,


;

e.g. TrXda-T-qs,
TJ^s,

ling.

38

(i.

434)

rexvtTJjs, ibid.

Kocr[xoTrXdar-

de plant Noe, 1

329);

koct/xottoios, ibid.

31

(i.

348), ov Te;(vtT7js

Kal TraTrjp tcov yiyvop-kviov, Leg. alleg. 1. 8 (i. 47). The which became important in later controversies do not appear in the writings which are probably Philo's own, but are found in those which probably belong to his school the most explicit recognition of them is de somn. 1. 13 (i. 632), o ^eos ra z-avra
fiovov

dXXa

distinctions

yVV7^cras
iTToirjcrev,

ov p-ovov

ts

to e/x(^avS tjyayev

dXXa

Kal d Tporepov ovk ^v

ov 8r]p.Lovpyos p.ovov
(ii.

aXAa Kal

KTLcrTrjS

avros wv
TrotT^rr);

cf.

also de
oXtav.

monarch. 3

216), ^eos ?$ la-ri Kal ktmttjjs Kal

twv

184

VII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

flows forth from

Him

and

fills

the universe.^
is
:

In

man

the two worlds meet.

The body

fashioned

Artificer from the dust of the earth

by the " The soul came

from nothing that


Leader of

is

created, but

from the Father and


breathed into

all things.

For what

He

Adam
for

was nothing

else

than a divine breath, a colony from

that blissful and

happy nature, placed here below


;

the benefit of our race

so that granting

man

to

be
^

mortal in respect of his visible part, yet in respect of


that

which
again:

is

invisible he is the heir of immortality."


is

And
Him,

"The mind
(of God),

an offshoot from the divine

and happy soul

an offshoot not separated from and disjoined, but

for nothing divine is cut off

only extended."^

And again, in expounding the words, " They have forsaken me, the fountain of life" (Jeremiah
13),

ii.

he says: "Only

God

is

the cause of soul and


life
;

life,

especially of rational soul

and reasonable

but

He

Himself

is

more than

life,

being the ever-flowing

fountain of

life." *

But the theory of the origin of the sensible world is dualistic. The matter upon which He acted was outside Him. " It was in itself without order,
This
is

monistic.

without quality, without


portion,

soul, full of difference, dispro-

and discord
identity,
37

it

received a change and trans-

formation into what was opposite and best, order, quality,


animation,
1

proportion, harmony,

all

that

is

Desomn.

2.

(i.

691).
(i.

2
(i.

De mnndi
Quod

oxtif.

46

32)

cf. ih.

51

(i.

35)

quod deus immut, 10

279), and elsewhere.


3

det. lot. ins.


(i.

24

(i.

208, 209).

Deprofu'j. 36

575).

YII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

185

characteristic of a better form."^

He

himself did not

touch

it.

" Out of
it
:

it

God begat

all things,

Himself not

touching

for

it

was not right that the all-knowing

and blessed One should touch unlimited and confused


matter
:

but
the
its

He

used the unbodied Forces whose true


(iSeai)^

name

is

Forms
fitting

that each class of things should

receive

shape." ^

These unbodied Forces,


of Forms,

which are here


(Xoyoi),

called

by the Platonic name

are elsewhere spoken of in Stoical language as Eeasons

sometimes in Pythagorean language as IsTumbers

or Limits, sometimes in the language of the Old Testa-

and sometimes in the language of popular mythology as DaBmons.^ The use of the two
as Angels,
^

ment

De mundi
1
(i.

opif.

(i.

5)

this is the

most

explicit expression of

his theory of the nature of matter.

It

may be supplemented by
ets

de

plant Noe,

329), tjjv ova-lav araKrov Kal (rvyKiyyiikviqv oucrav 1^

avTrjs els rd^iv e^

dra^tas Kal eK (rvyxwews


rjp^aro
:

SiaKpLCTiv aytav 6
(i.

Koa-ixoTrXda-T-qs fiop(f)ovv

quis rer. div. her. 27

492)

de

eomn.
found,
word

2.

(i.

e.g.

665) ovcrta is the more usual word, but vXrj is sometimes de plant Noe, 2 (i. 330) the conception underlying either
:
:

is

more

Stoical than Platonic,

i.

e.

it is

rather that of matter

having the property of resistance than that of potential matter or empty space hence in de profug. 2 (i. 547), t^v diroiov Kal dvdSeov
:

Kal

da-)(r]p.6.Ti(TTov

ovaiav

is

contrasted, in strictly Stoical phraseology,

with TO KIVOVV
*

atTLOV.

De

sacrlf.

13

(ii.

261).
I8eai are

The terms Aoyot and


:

common.

Instances of the other


(i,

terms are the following


epyoiv Kal

angels, de con/us. ling. 8


4'^os

408), rwv
i.

ddwv
638),
122),

Aoywv ous Kakelv


oi"?

dyyeXovs
:

de somn.

19

(i,

ddavdrois Aoyois

KaXiiv idos dyyeXovs


:

Leg. alley.

3. 2.

62
2

(i.
(i.

Tous dyyeAovs Kal Aoyovs avrov

Sat/zoves,

de gigant.

263),
'.

ous aAAo6

<f)i.X6(ro(f)oi

Satjuovas,

dyyeXovs
1.

MwiJcrTjs

eicadev

ovo/m^eiv

SO, in identical

words, de somn.
(i.

22

(i.

642)

dpiOp-ol

and

ixkrpa,
tt/jos

quis rer. div. heres. 31

495), Tracrtv dpiOpioh Kal irda-ais rats


Trcjrotrj kotos
:

TcAcioTijTo iSeais KaTa)(p-qa-afivov rov

de mund. opif. 9

186

VII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

names Force and Form, with the synonyms which are


interchanged with each of them, expresses the two sides
of the conception of them. or instruments

They
of

are at once the agents

by means

which God fashioned the

world, and also the types or patterns after which

He

fashioned

it.^

In both respects they are frequently viewed, not in


the plurality of their manifestations, but in the unity of
their essence.

On

the one hand, they collectively form

the world which the Divine Architect of the great City


of the Universe fashioned in

His mind before His thought


its

went outside
Logos.) the

Him

to

stamp with

impress the chaotic


is

and unformed mass.

The

place of this world

the

Eeason or Will or

Word

of

God

more preits

cisely, it constitutes that

Logos in a special form of

activity

for in the building of


it

an ordinary city the

ideal

which precedes

"is no other than the mind of

the architect, planning to realize in a visible city the


iSeai

(i.

7),

KoX fxerpa Kal tvttoi Kal cr^/sayiSes


aTTiipa.

cf.

de monarch. 6
Treparovcrat

(ii.

219),

Ta

Kal aopurra Kal

dcr)(r^fJ.a.TurTa

Kat

TripiopL^ovcrai Kal
^

(T)(t^ fnaTL^ovcrai.

The

clearest instance of the identification is probably in de

(ii.

218, 219), where

God

tells

Moses that so

far

monarch, from Himself being


are cognizable in

cognizable, not even the powers that minister to


their essence
;

Him

but that as seals are known from their impressions,


fi

ToiavTtts VTroXTjTTTeov Kal Tas Trepl


pop(f)as
a.fJLop(pOL<;

Svvafieis uTrotois TrotOTT^ras Ka\

Kal

fxrjSiv

rrjs

dl'Siov

c^iVews fieTaXXofJuvas

ft^Tl

)UtOV/iVaS.
2

De mund.
Tf

opif.

(i.

5),

oiSkv av erepov curoi


'

toi/

votjtov c?vai

Kocrfiov

Oiov Xoyov

rjSrj

KocrixoTTOiovvTos

vit.

Mos.

3,

13

(ii.

154),

Twv

acrco/iciTcav

Kal Tra/jaSciy/xaTtKwi/ iScwv l^


(i.

tov 6 voj^tos iTrdyrj Kocr/J.o<s:

BO de confiLs. ling. 34
Epictct. Diss.
1.

431)

cf.

the Stoical definition of Aoyos in

20. 5, as (n-Vxy^a Ik iroidv

<^avTa(nw.

VII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

187

city of his
call

thought

The archetypal
is itself

seal,

which we

the ideal world,


of

the archetypal pattern, the

Form

Forms, the Eeason of God." ^

On the other hand,


It is the

the Eeason of

God

is

sometimes viewed not as a Form

but as a Force.

It is

His creative energy .^

instrument by which

He made

all

things.^

It is the

"river of
forth to

God" that is "full of waters," and "make glad the city of God," the
from a fountain,
all

that flows
universe.'*

From
flow.

it,

as

lower Forms and Forces


it,

By

another and even sublimer figure,

the

eldest born of the " I

am," robes

itself

with the world

as with a vesture, the high-priest's robe, embroidered


all

by

the Forces of the seen and unseen worlds.^

But

in all this, Philo never loses sight of the primary

truth that the world was


beings, but

made not by inferior

or opposing

by God. It is the expression of His Thought. His Thought went forth from Him, impressing itself in Forms and by means of infinite Forces: but though His Thought was the charioteer, it is God
infinite
^

De mund.

opif.

(i.

4)

the same conception


(i.

is

expressed in less

figurative language in Leg. alley. 1. 9


a'urdr^ra. rjv

47), irp\v dvaretAai

Kara

/xepos

to yevtKov al(r6y]Tov

TrpofirjOiia

tou

TrcTroiij kotos.

^ SvvafiLS KO(T[J.oTroti]Ti.Kr],

de mund. opif. 5

(i.

5); Suva/zis

TroirjTiKT'f

deprofug. 18

(i.

560).

Leg. alleg.

1.

(i.

47),

rw yap

Trepiffiavea-TaTU) /cat T-qXavyea-raTC^

Aoyo), p-qixari, 6

^eos

ajx^onpa
(i.

(i.e.

both heaven and earth) irouli


xpw/zevos vK-qpirrj SoypeQu
it is
(i.

quod dens immut. 12


Tov
Leg.
* 6

281),

Aoyw

Kal

Koa-fiov Lpyd^eTo
alleg. 3.

more

expressly,

the instrument, opyavov^

31
2.

(i 106),

de cherub. 35

162).

De De

somn.

37

(i.

691).

profug. 20

(i.

562), de migrat. Ahr. 18

(i.

452)

cl Wisdom,

18. 24.

188

VII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

Himself who gives the orders.^

By

a different concepis

tion of the genesis of the world,

and one that

of

singular interest in view of the similar conceptions which

we
of

shall find in

some Gnostic

schools,

God
of
is

is

the Father
is

the

world:

and the metaphor


:

Fatherhood

expanded into that of a marriage


the Father,

God

conceived as

His Wisdom

as the

Mother:
fruitful

"and

she,

receiving the seed of God, with

birth-pangs

brought forth this world. His visible


beloved." ^

son, only

and well-

"We have now the main elements


tianity constructed

of

the current

conceptions out of which the philosophers of early Chiis-

new

fabrics.

Christianity

had no need
the world.

to

borrow from Greek philo-

sophy either the idea of the unity of God, or the belief


that

He made

Its ultimate basis

was the

belief in one

God.

It rode in

reaction against polytheism.


it

upon the wave of the The Scriptures to which


It

appealed began with the sublime declaration, " In the

beginning

God

created the heavens and the earth."

accepted that declaration as being both final and complete.

It

saw therein the picture


and
it
''

of a single

supreme
aid of

Artificer:

elaborated the picture


:

by the

anthropomorphic conceptions

By

His almighty power

He
1

fixed firm the heavens, and

by His incomprehensible

Deprofiuj. 19 (i 561).

^ o

tZv oXwv

Trar-qp,
1.

de mi'jrat. Ahrah. 9
(i.

(i.

443); 6 ^eos ri

flravra

yivvq(Ta<i,
8

de sonin.

13

632),

and elsewhere.

De

ebriet.

(i.

361).

VII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

189

wisdom He

set

them

in order

He
it

separated the earth

from the water that encompassed

...

and

last of all

He

formed man with His sacred and spotless hands, the

impress of His

The

belief

own image." ^ that the one God was

the Creator of heaven


to

and earth came, though not without a struggle,

be a

foremost and permanent element in the Christian creed.

The various forms


and around
it fostered,
it,

of ditheism

which grew up with


its

it

finding their roots in

unsolved pro-

blems and their nutriment in the very love of God which


gradually withered away.

But

in proportion

as the belief spread widely over the

Greek world, the


insufiicient.

simple

Semitic

cosmogony became

The

questions of the
relation of

mode

of creation,

and

of the precise

God

to the material world,

which had grown

with the growth of monotheism as a philosophical doctrine,

were asked not

less instinctively,

and with an even


a

keener-sighted enthusiasm,
religious conviction.

when monotheism became

as the necessary outgrowth


of that which, not less

They came not from curiosity, but among an educated people

now than
philosophy
:

then,

is

the crucial

question of

all theistic

almighty
fection

God made
failure

the world, can


?

How, if a good and we account for imper-

and

and pain
of the

These questions
relation of
^

mode

of creation and of the

God

to the material world,


:

and the underlying

trast

Clem. Rom. 33. 3, 4 but it is a noteworthy instance of the conbetween this simple early belief and the developed theology which
in less than a century later, that Irenoeus,
lib. 4, pra^f.

had grown up
c. 4,

explains the 'hands' to

mean

the Son and Spirit

"

homo

per

manus
dixit

ejus plasmatus est, hoc est per Filium et Spiritum quibue et

Faciamus hominem."

190

VII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

question which any answer to them must at the same time


solve,
fill

a large place in the history of the

first

three

centuries.

The compromise which ultimately

resulted

has formed the basis of Christian theology to the present


day.

The

first

answers were necessarily tentative. Thinkers

of all schools, within the original communities and outside them, introduced conceptions

which were afterwards


tableaux of the

discarded.
of

One group

of philosophers, treating the facts

Christianity as symbols,

like the

mysteries,
also,

framed cosmogonies which were symbolical

and

fantastic in proportion as they

were symbolical.
with the

Another group

of philosophers, dealing rather

ideal than with the actual,

framed cosmogonies in which and per-

abstract ideas were invested with substance


sonality.

The philosophers

of all schools

were met, not

only by the

common

sense of the Christian communities,

but also by caricature.

Their opponents, after the man-

ner of controversialists, accentuated their weak points,

and handed on
theories

to later times only those parts of the to attack,

which were most exposed


least
intelligible

and which

were

also

except in relation to the

whole system.

But

so far as the underlying conceptions


details,

can be disentangled from the


of Greek philosophy.
1.

they

may be

clearly
drifts

seen to have drifted in the direction of the

main

There was a large tendency

to

account for the


In.

world by the hypothesis of evolution.

some way

it

had come forth from God.


in

The

belief expressed itself

many

forms.

It

was

in all cases svncretist.

The

VII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

191

same writers frequently made use of different metaphors but all the metaphors assumed vast grades and distances
between God in Himself and the sensible world.

One
its

metaphor was that of an outflow, as of a stream from


source.^

Other metaphors were taken from the phenofrom

mena
a

of vegetable growth, the evolution of a plant

seed, or the putting forth of leaves

by

a tree.^

The

metaphors of other writers were taken from the pheno-

mena

of

human

generation

they were an elaboration

of the conception of

God

as the Father of the world.


:

They were sometimes

pressed

there

was not only a

Father, but also a Mother of the world,

Wisdom or Silence
it

or some other abstraction.

In one elaborate system

was held
pairs,

that,

though God Himself was unwedded,

all

the powers that came forth from

Him came

forth in

and

all

existing things were the offspring of their


also conceived in

union.*
^

That which came forth was


:

Derivatio

Iren. 1. 24. 3, of Basilides (or rather one of the schools

of Basilidians).
2

This

is

probably the metaphor involved in the


Hippol.
6. 38,

common word

3rpo/3oXi7, e.g.

of Epiphanes.

2 The conception of the double nature of God, male and female, is found as early as Xenocrates, Aetius ap. Stob. Eel. 1. 2. 29 (Diels, p. 304) ; and commonly among the Stoics, e.g. in the verses of Valerius

Soranus, which are quoted by Varro, and after

him by

S. Augustitie,

de

civit.

Dei,

7.

Jupiter omnipotens regum rex ipse deusque

Progenitor genitrixque deum, deus unus et omnis.

So Philodemus, de
Zeus
o.ppr]v,

piet.
;

6,

ed.

Gomp.

p.

83

(Diels, p. 549), quotes


3. 9,

Zcvs dyjXv;
:

and Eusebius, proap. Evang.

p.

100

6,

quotes the Orphic verse


Zeus
*

ap<Tr]v ye veto,
in, e.g.,

Zevs afx/Sporos

err Aero vl'/^^t/.


:

TheValentinians
6,

Hippol.
(^Jjcri

6.

29; 10, 13

so of

Simon Magus,
ajro

ib

12, ^iyovhat, Se rd? pi^as

Kurd crv^uyias

tov

irvpui.

192

VII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

various ways.
philosophers
is

The common expression in one group of won {alwv^^ a term which is of uncertain
In other groups of philoStoical

origin in this application.

sophers the expressions are relative to the metaphor of

growth and development, and repeat the


seed.

term

In the syncretism
of the

of

Marcus the several expresand made more


intelligible

sions are gathered together,

by the use

synonym

logoi;^ the thoughts of

God

were conceived as active

forces,

embodying themselves in

material forms. In the conception of one school of thinkers,


the invisible forces of the world acted in the same
that the art of a craftsman acts

way
In

upon

his materials.^

the conception of another school, the distinction between


intellectual

and material existence tended


forth

to

vanish.
at

The powers which flowed


intellectual

from God were

once

and material, corresponding

to the monistic

conception of

God

Himself.

They were

subtler
its

and

more

active forms of

matter acting upon

grosser

but plastic forms.

In the conception

of another school,

God
is
^

is

the unbegotten seed of which the Tree of Being

the leaves and fruit, ^ and the fruit again contains


Hippol.
6.

43

(of Marcus),

ra

Se ovo/iara Ttuv a-Toiyi-'nav

ra

kolvo,

Kal pr]Ta aiwj/as xal

Aoyous

Kat pi^as Kai (nrepiMara Kai irXij-

pdifiara koI Kapirovs


^

ii)v6fj.a(re.

Hippol.

5.
/at)

TrapaAeiVets

voi]6iv,

19 (of the Sethiani), Trav o ti vo-qa-et tTnvods y Kat touto iKacrTrj twv dp^wi' vre^vKe yevecr^at J)s v

dvdpioTrii'r) ^v)(^if Tracra r]Tt.(TOvv 8t.8aa-K0fj.evr] T)^vrj.

Hippol.

8.

8 (of the Docetse), ^ov eTvai tov irpQrov olovel cnrepfMa


a7rei/D0v
:

(TVKTJs [JLeyWei

pXv iXa-^ia-Tov TravrtAtos Swdfiei 8e


17

ibid.

c.

9,

TO 8e TrpwTov (nvepfxa ckuvo, oOev yeyovcv

avKrj, eoriv dyevvrjTOV.


6.

A
it

similar metaphor was used by the Simonians, Hippol.


is

9 sqq., but
fire

complicated with the metai)hor of invisible and visible


It is adopted

(heat

flame).

by Peter

in the Clementines, Horn. 2. 4,

and where

G^d

is

the fn^a,

man

the Ka/)-o9.

VII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

193

in itself infinite possibilities of renewing the original


seed.^

The obvious
its failures

difficulty

which the actual world,

with,

and imperfections, presents

to all theories of

evolution which assume the existence of a good and


perfect God,
lapse.

was bridged over by the hypothesis of a


"fall

The
itself.

from

original

righteousness"

was

carried back from the earthly Paradise to the sphere of

divinity

The theory was shaped

in various ways,

some

of

which are expressed by almost unintelligible


That
and
of the widely-spread school of Valentinus

symbols.

was, that the Divine


to passion,
that,

Wisdom

herself

had become subject


desire,

having both ambition and

she

had produced from herself a shapeless mass, in ignorance


that the XJnbegotten another, produce

One

alone can, without the aid of

what

is perfect.

Out

of this shapeless

mass, and the passions that came forth from her, arose

the material world and the Demiurgus

who

fashioned

it.^

Another theory was that


the supernal powers.^
difficulty

of revolt

and insurrection among


pushed the
it

Both
:

theories simply

farther back

they gave no solution of

they were opposed as strongly by philosophers outside


Christianity as they were
it
:

by polemical theologians within

they helped to pave the


....
6 KapTTos ev

way

for the Augustiniau

Ibid. 8, 8,

y to

aireipov Kal to dve^apiOfiTjTOV

6r]<Tavpt^6[Xvov <f)v\d(T(TTai (nrepfia crvKrjs.


2

The

chief authorities for this theory,

which was expressed


the
first

iu lan-

guage that readily lent


of the
3

itself to caricature, are

seven chapters

first

book of

Ireno3us,

and Hippolytus

6.

32 sqq.
5. 13.

This was especially the view of the Peratte, Hippol.

Kotably by Plotinus, Etm.

ii,

9.

25.

194

YII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

theology of succeeding centuries, but they did not themselves

win permanent acceptance


Side

either in philosophy or

in theology, in either the Eastern or the


2.

Western world.
to It

by

side with these hypotheses of evolution

was a tendency, which ultimately became supreme, account for the world by the hypothesis of creation. was the
matter.
result of the action of

God upon already

existing

It

was not evolved, but ordered or shaped.

God was

the Builder or Framer: the universe was a

work of art.^ But this, no

less

than the monistic hypothesis, con-

tained grave difficulties, arising partly from the metaphysical conception of God, and partly from the conception
of

moral

evil.

Three main questions were discussed in


it
:

connection with
of matter to

(i.)

"What was the ultimate relation

God ?

(ii.)

How

did

with

it

so as to shape it?

(iii.)

How

God come into contact did a God who was


is

almighty as well as beneficent come to create what


imperfect and evil
(i.)

The

dualistic hypothesis

assumed a co-existence of

matter and God.

The assumption was more frequently tacit than explicit. The difficulty of the assumption varied according to the degree to which matter was There was a regarded as having positive qualities.
universal belief that beneath the qualities of
all

existing

things lay a substratum or substance on which they

The conception appears


ajjiopcjiov

in Justin Martyr,

^4^50?.

i.

10,

raVra
:

ti)v

apx^jv dyaduv oVra Srjfiiovpyrja-at avTov i^ dfi6p(f>ov vXrjs


uAtjv
ovcrav (TTpk\pavra. tov 6(.ov Kocr/iov Troi^crai
:

ih. c,

59,

but Justin,

tliough he avowedly adopts the conception from Plato, claims that

Plato adopted

it

from Mosea.

VII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.


and which gave
to

195
its

were

grafted,

each thing

unity.

But the conception


and formless

of the nature of this substance varied


to that of

from that of gross and tangible material


space.

empty
of

The metaphysical conception

substance tended to be confused with the physical conception of matter.

Matter was sometimes conceived as

a mass of atoms not coalescing according to any principle


or order of arrangement:^

the action of the Creator

upon them was that

of a general changing a rabble of


It

individuals into an organized army.

was sometimes
as a potter as a

conceived as a vast shapeless but plastic mass, to which


the Creator gave form, partly by moulding
it

moulds
house.2

clay, partly

by combining various elements

builder combines his materials in the construction of a

Both these conceptions


it

of matter tended to
It

regard

as

more or

less gross.

was
still

plastic in the

hands of the Divine Workman, but


quality of resistance.

possessed the

With

Basilides, the conception of

matter was raised to a higher plane.


subject and object

The

distinction of

was preserved,

so that the action of

the Transcendent
of evolution
;

He

still that of creation and not was " out of that which was not " that made things to be. That which He made was

God was

but

it

expressed by the metaphor of a seed which contained in

Plutarch, de anim. procreat.


fir]

5. 3,

ov yap eK tov
:

p) oiros

rj

yevecrts
t^v to.

aXA. cK To{3
7r/3o ttJs

KttAws

firj^

iKavw? e;^ovTOS
:

ibid. aKoa-jxia

yap

tou Koa-fiov yeveo-ews

cf.

Moller, KosmoloQie, p. 39.


:

- Wisdom, 11. 18, Kria-aa-a tov koctjxov l^ dp.6p(jiov vXr]s Apol 1. 10. 59 (quoted in note, p. 194) Athenag. Ler/at
:

Justin M.
15, ws

yap

o /cepa^eus

Kat, o ttt^Xos, v\'i]

pev o

TvrjXos, Te;(viTr;s 8e 6
i)

Kepapevs, Kal 6

^eos B'Qp.LOVpyos, viraKovova-a 8e avTi^

vXtj Trpo? r-qv

rex^W'

o2

196

VII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY,


not only of growth, but of different

itself possibilities,

kinds of growth.
the world of
spirit,

Three worlds were involved in

it:

and the world


life.

of matter,

and between
is

the two the world of

The metaphor
original seed

sometimes

explained by

the help of the Aristotelian conception of

genera and species}


is

The

which God made


process

the ultimate

summum

genus.

The

by which

all

things came into being followed in inverse order the

process of our
ideas ascend,

knowledge.

The

steps

by which our

by an almost

infinite stairway of subor-

dinated groups, from the visible objects of sense to the highest of


all abstractions,

the Absolute Being and the

Absolute Unity, are the steps by which that Absolute

Being and Absolute Unity, who

is

God, evolved or made

the world from that which was not.

The

basis of the

theory was Platonic, though some of the terms were borrowed from both Aristotle and the Stoics. It became
itself

the basis of the theory which ultimately prevailed

in the Church.

The

transition appears in Tatian.

In

him,

God

is

the author, not only of the form or qualities,


all

but also of the substance or underlying ground of


things.-

"The Lord

of the universe being Himself the

substance of the whole, not yet having brought any


creature into being,

was alone

and since

all

power over

both visible and invisible things was with Him,

Ho

Himself by the power of His word gave substance


*

to all

Hippol.
Tiji'

7.

22 (of Basilidos),

toijto

eVn To

(TTTipjxa o ;^ei Iv

eavrw

TTa'sav

Trav(nrepiJ.Lav

o (^fjcnv A/atcrToreAr^s yei'os

dvai

cis det'/DOVS

Tc/iv'()/xei'ov

tSeas ws Te/JLvofuv avru tov ('oov f^ovy, lttttov, avOptnTrov ovtp

ICTTIV *

OVK ov.

Cf.

ih.

10. 14.

Orat.

ad Grace. 5 (following the

text of Schwartz).

VII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.


This theory
^

197

things with Himself."

is

found in another
of

form in Athenagoras

he makes a point in defence


of all existence,
It is

Christianity that, so far from denying the existence of

God,

it

made Him the Author

He

alone
in
it.

being unborn and imperishable.

found

also

Theophilus,^ who, however, does not lay stress upon

But

its

importance was

soon seen.

It

had probably

been for a long time the unreasoned belief of Hebrew

monotheism

the development of the Platonic conception


it

within the Christian sphere gave

a philosophical form

and early in the third century

it

had become the prevail-

ing theory in the Christian Church.


matter.

God had

created

He was not merely the Architect of the universe,


Source.^

but
* 2

its

Snppl. j)ro Christ.

4.

Ad

Autol. 2. 5 and 10; but in the former of these passages ho


et o

adds, Tt 8e fikya
2

^eos e^

v-!roKet[XV)]S
is

dAtjs cTrotei Toi' Koafiov.


1,

The most important passage


Kal
is
7roi7^cras
e/c

Hermas, Aland.
to.

which

is

expressed

in strictly philosophical language, 6 deos 6


Tticras

Trdvra Kxto-as Kal Karapto,

tou

[xi]

ovtos
3.

etS

to etVat
4.
i.

iravra (the pas-

sage
5. 8.

quoted as Scripture by Irenteus,


1.

20.
p.

Eusebius, H. E.
1. 5,

7: Origen, de princip.
:

3, vol.

61, 2.

p. 79,

elsewhere)

this

must be read by the


is

light of the distinctions


19,

and which

are clearly expressed

by Athenagoras, Legat 4 and


aykv-qrov
'.

where to ov

=
is

TO voj^Tov, which

to

ot5k

ov
:

to

alcrO-qrov,

which
i^rj

yevrjToi', dp)^6ixevov er^at

Kal Trav6[j.evov

the meaning of to

ov

appears from the expression, to ou ov yLverai


it is

dXXd

to

/xt)

ov,

whence

clear that to
p.

/xy]

ov

= to

Swajxei ov, or potential being (see Mbller,

Kosmologie,

123).
it is

phrases occur,

In some of the other passages in which similar not clear Avhether the conception is more than that
to exist
errotrja-ev

of an artist who,

by impressing form on matter, causes things


:

which did not


avTO, 6 Oeos
'.

exist before
i.

2 Maccab. 7. 28, e^ ovk oVtwv

2 Clem.

8, e/caXeo-ev
:

yap

rjfids

ovk ovTac Kal


tiJ)

rj9e\-t)(TV

(K

fj,r]

ovTOi (TvaL

rjixas

Clementin. Horn,

3. 32,

tci /x>|

oVto

ts

tj

198

VII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.


its

But the theory did not immediately win


acceptance.

way

to

It rather set aside the moral difficulties


It

than solved them.


those
difficulties

was attacked by those who


There are two chief
:

felt
lite-

strongly.

rary records of the controversy

one

is

the treatise of
is

Tortullian against Hermogenes, the other


of about the same date which
is

a dialogue

ascribed to an otherwise

unknown Maximus.^
insoluble difficulties

Both

treatises are interesting as

examples not only of contemporary polemics, but of the

which beset any attempt

to explain

the origin of moral evil on metaphysical grounds.

attempt was soon afterwards practically


solution of the moral difficulties
of Free-will
:

The abandoned. The


in the doctrine

was found

the solution of the metaphysical difficulties

was found

in the general acceptance of the belief that


all

God

created

things out of nothing.

(ii.)

How, under any


so as to give
it

conception of matter, short of

its

having been created by God, did God come into contact


with
it

qualities

and form

The

difficulty

of the question

became greater as the

tide of

thought

receded from anthropomorphism.


tri/at (Tvo-Tr^crajjiivij),

The dominant idea


Bdkacra-av
:

ovpavov

5}]fJ.LOvpyyjo-avTi, yTjv TrtAojcrai'Ti,

iptopicravTi, TO. kv ^^ij rafiuvixavrL Kal ra Trai/ra dept TrXijpdxravTi

llippolyt. in Genes. 1, ry [ilv Trpi^Ty yiJ-epa eirotv^crev 6 ^eos ocra iirocyaiv


K
[Ml]

(jVtwi'

Tats Si

aAAais ovk

p)

uvTiov.
7}

In Theopliilus, these
v\i] in

expressions are interchanged with that of

v7T0Ke.ip.kvi)

such a

way

as to suggest their identity


:

1.4;
TrdvTa
oj/

2.

10,

e^ ovk ovtwi'
vXi]'i

tu iravra
kiroUt tov

eTTOLijcrev

2. 4,

tl 81

p.kya

f.1

o ^eo?
to.

k^

v7roKeLp.kvy]<;

Koap-ov .... iVa k^ ovk ovtwv

iironjcrev.

In the
:

hiter

books

of the Clementine Homilies, to


17. 8, gives a clear
^

p)

= void

space

the whole passage,

and interesting exposition.


7. 22,

In Euseb. Praep. Evang.


ii.

and elsewhere

reprinted in Eouth,

Reliquiae Sacrae,

87.

VII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

199

was that
plurality

of mediation.

Sometimes, as in Philo, the

mediation vras regarded from the point of view of the

and variety

of the effects,

and the agents were

conceived as being more than one in number.

They
indica-

were the angels of the Hebrews, the daemons of the


Oreeks.

Those who appealed

to Scripture

saw an

tion of this in the use of the plural in the first chapter

of Genesis, " Let us

make man."^

Another current

of

speculation flowed in the channel, which had been

first

formed by the Timceus

of Plato, of supposing a single

Creator and Euler of the world who, in subordination to


the transcendent God, fashioned the things that exist.

In some schools

of thought this theory

was combined

with the theory of creation by the Son.^


trolled play of imagination in the region of

The unconthe unknown


it

constructed more than one strange speculation which


is

not necessary to revive.

The view
up out
Greek.

into

which the Christian consciousness

ultiitself

mately settled down had meanwhile been building


of elements

which were partly Jewish and partly

On

the one hand, there had long been

the Jews a belief in the power of the

among word of God:


itself into

and the

belief in

His wisdom had shaped

conception of that wisdom as a substantive force.

On

the other hand, the original conception of Greek philo-

Justin

M. Tryph.

Q'2;
(i.

Iren. 1. 24,

25; Hippol.

7.

16,

20: so
/xo'

Philo,

de irrofug. 13

556), where, after quoting the passage of

Genesis, he proceeds, following the Platonic theory, SiaAeyerai


o Twv oXiiiv Trarryp rats ka.vTOv Swa/xcriv a?s to dvrjTov
fiepos k5o}Ke StaTrAarTeiv, {JLifiov/xevaLS Tr)v
^
rjfjLiov

ovv

rr^s

^I'X^'

avTov

T)(^vy]y.

The

Perate in Hippol. 5. 17.

200

VII.

GKEEK AND CHEISTIAN THEOLOGY.

sophy that Mind or Eeason had marshalled into ordei


the

confused and warring elements of the primaeval

chaos,

had passed into the conception


of the activity of

of the Logos as

mode

God.

These several elements,


each other, had already

which had a natural


prehensive system
entering into

affinity for

been combined by Philo, as we have seen, into a com:

and

in the second century they

were

new

combinations both outside and inside

the Christian communities.^

The vagueness of conception


is

which we have found


clear

in Philo

found also in the


It is

earliest

expressions of these combinations.

not always

whether the Logos

is

regarded as a mode of God's

activity, or as

having a substantive existence.


as the Creator
:

In either
because

view,

God was regarded

His supremacy
rival,

was

as absolute as

His unity

there

was no

in either view the Logos


(iii.)

was God.
at once beneficent

How

could a

God who was

and almighty create a world which contained imperfection and moral evil? The question was answered, as we
have

on the monistic theory of creation by the It was answered on the dualistic hypothesis of a lapse.
seen,

theory, sometimes matter,

by the hypothesis of evil inherent in and sometimes by the hypothesis of creation by


came rather from the
harmonized with and
of matter as the

subordinate and imperfect agents.


Tlie former of these hypotheses

East than from Greece;

but

it

was supported by the Greek conception


8eat of formlessness
^

and

disorder.
says, " If

The Jew through whom Celsus sometimes speaks Logos ir the Son of God, we also assent to the same."
2. 31.

youu

Origcn,

c CeU*

Til.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY,

201

The

latter hypothesis is

an extension of the Platonic

distinction

between the perfect world which God created

direcily through the operation of

His own powers, and In the

the world of mortal and imperfect existences the creation of

which

He

entrusted to inferior agents.

Platonic conception,

God

Himself, in a certain

mode

of

His

activity,

inferior

was the Creator (Demiurgus), and the agents were beings whom He had created.^

In the conception which grew up early in the second century, and which was first formulated by Marcion, the
Creator was detached from the Supreme God, and conceived as doing the

was subordinate
derived from
finite

to
:

work of the inferior agents. He the Supreme God and ultimately

Him ^ but looming large in the horizon of thought, He seemed to be a rival and an adversary.
ability,

The

contradictions, the imperfections, the inequalities of

both condition and


material

which meet us in both the

and the moral world, were solved by the

hypothesis of two worlds in conflict, each of them moving

under the impulse of a separate Power.


tion applied also to the contrast of the

The same

solu-

Testaments.
of the

It

Old and New had been already thought that the God
di:fferent

Jews was

from the Father of Jesus

Christ; but, with an exaggerated Paulinism, Marcion

made

so deep a

chasm between the

Law and

the Gospel,

the Flesh and the Spirit, that the two were regarded as

inherently hostile,

and the work of the Saviour was

Cf. Origen,

c.

Cels. 4. 54.

'

Hippol.

c.

Noet. 11.

202

VII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

regarded as bringing back into the world from which

he had been shut out the God

of love

and

grace.^

The

objection to all this

was
it

that,

in spite of its

reservations and safeguards,

tended to ditheism.

The

philosophical difhculties of monotheism were enormous,

but the knot was not to be cut by the hypothesis of


either a co-existent

and resisting matter or an indepen-

dent and rival God.

The enormous wave of belief in the Divine Unity, which had gathered its strength from the whole sea of contemporary thought, swept away the
barriers in its path.

The moral

difficulty

was

solved, as

we

shall see in the


:

next Lecture, by the conception of

free-will

the metaphysical difficulties of the contact of

God with matter were solved, partly by the that God created matter, and partly by the
that

conception
conception
is

He moulded

it

His Son, eternally

by His Logos, who co-existent with Him.


into form

also

The
it

first patristic

statement of this view

is
:

in Irenseus

stands in the forefront of his theology

and

it

seems

to of

have been so generally accepted in the communities

which he was cognizant, that he

states it as part of
is
^
:

the recognized "rule of truth:" the following

only

one of several passages in which he so states


"

it

There

is

one Almighty

God who

created all things

by His

Word and
1

fashioned them, and caused that out of what was not

It is not the least, of the

many

contributions of Professor

Harnack

he has vindicated Marciou from the excessive disparagement which has resulted from the blind adoption of
to early Christian history tliat

the vituperations of Tertullian

see especially his Dogmengeschichte,

Bd.
2

i.

pp.

22G
:

sqq., 2te aufl.

1.

22

cf. 4.

20.

VII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

203

all

things should be: as saith the Scripture,

By

the

Word

of

the Lord were the heavens made, and all the host of them by the Breath of His mouth and again, All things were made by Him, and without Him was not anything made that was made. There is no exception the Father made all things by Him,
:
:

whether

visible or invisible, objects of sense or objects of intel-

ligence, things temporal or things eternal.

by angels

He made them not by any powers separated from His Thought for God needs none of all these beings but it is by His Word and His Spirit that He makes and disposes and governs and presides
or
:

over

all things.

This

fashioned man, this

God who made the world, God of Abraham, and God


is
:

this

God who
and
the

of Isaac,

God

of Jacob, above

whom there
this

no other God, nor Beginning


is

nor Power nor Fulness

God, as we shall show,

Father of our Lord Jesus Christ."

The same view is expressed with equal prominence and emphasis by a disciple of Irenseus, who shows an
even stronger impress of the philosophical speculations
of his time
^
:

"The one God, the

first

and

sole

and universal Maker and


air,

Lord, had nothing coeval with

him, not infinite chaos, not


or

measureless water, or solid earth, or dense

warm
:

fire,

or

subtle breath, nor the azure cope of the vast heaven

but

He

was

one, alone

by Himself, and by His

will

He made

the things

that are, that before were not, except so far as they existed in

This supreme and only God begets Eeason first, having formed the thought of him, not reason as a spoken word, but as an internal mental process of the universe. Him alone did He beget from existing things for the Father himself constituted existence, and from it came that which was begotten. The cause of the things that came into being was the

His foreknowledge

Eeason, bearing in himself the active will of


BO that

Him who

begat

him, and not being without knowledge of the Father's thought

when

the father bade the world


1

come

into being, the

Hippol. 10. 32, 33.

204

TIL GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

Eeason brought each thing to perfection one by one, thus pleasing


God."

This creed of Irenceus and his

scliool

became the
It appealed,

basis of the theology of later Christendom.


as time

went

on, to a

widening sphere, and summed up

the judgment of average Christians on the main philosophical questions of the second century.

The questions
all

were not seriously re-opened. The


no
less

idealists of Alexandria,

than the rhetoricians of Gaul, accepted, with


the belief that there was one

its difficulties,

God who

revealed Himself to mankind by the

had created them, and that


Jesus Christ.
less

this

Word by whom He Word was manifested in


diffi-

But the Alexandrians were concerned


difficulties

with the metaphysical than with the moral


;

culties

and their view of those


of creation.

modified also

their

The cosmogony of Origen was a His aim was less to show in detail how the theodicy. world came into existence, than to ''justify the ways of
view

God

to

man."

He

proceeded strictly on the lines of the

older philosophies, justifying in this part of his theology

even more than in other respects the criticism of Porphyry,^


that though in his
his opinions about

manner

of life

he was a Christian, in

God he was

a Greek.

He

followed

the school of Philo in believing that the original creation

was

of a world of ideal or "intelligible"

existences,

and that the cause of creation was the goodness of God.-

He

differed from,

or expanded, the teaching of that

school in believing that the

Word

or

Wisdom

of God,

by whom He made

the world,

was not impersonal, but


De princip.

His Son, and that both the existence of the Son and the

ap.

Euseb. H. E.

6. 19.

2. 9. 1, 6.

Vn. GREEK AND CHEISTIAN THEOLOGY.


creation of the ideal world

205

had been from

all eternity.'

For

it is

impious to think that

God

ever existed without

His Wisdom, possessing the power to create but not the


will
;

and

it is

inconceivable either that

Wisdom

should

ever have been without the conception of the world that

was

to be, or that there should ever

have been a time at

which God was not omnipotent from having no world to


govern.2
ijj^g

relation of each to the world is stated in

varying ways

one mode of statement

is,

that from the

Father and the Son, thus eternally co-existent, came the


actual world
it
;

the Father caused


3

it

to be, the

Son caused

to

be rational:

another

is,

that the whole world,

visible

and

invisible,

was made by the agency of the


a share in himself to

only begotten Son,

who conveyed

certain parts of the things so created

and caused them


a

thereby to become rational creatures.* This visible world,


which, as also Philo and the Platonists had taught,
is

copy of the ideal world, took


it is

its

beginning in time
last, of

but

not the

first,

nor will

it

be the

such worlds.^

The matter
God.^
It

of

it

as well as the form


to

was created by
it

was made by Him, and

Him

will return.

The

Stoical theory

had conceived

of the

universe as

analogous to a seed which expands to flower and fruit

and withers away, but leaves behind


which has a similar
through
life

it

a similar seed
:

and a similar succession


its

so did

one universal order spring from


its

beginning and pass

appointed period to the end which was like


it

the beginning in that after


1

all
2

things began anew.

Deprincip.

1. 2. 2.

m^i

2. 2,

10.

Ibid. 1. 3. 5, 6, 8,

* Ibid. 2. 6. 3.

Ibid.

3. 5. 3.

Ibid. 2. 9. 4.

206

VII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOQT.


:

Origon's theory was a modification of this

it

recognized

an absolute beginning and an absolute end: both the


beginning and the end were God:
poised as
it

were

between these two divine

eternities

were the worlds of


creatures were

which we are

part.

In them,
:

all rational

originally equal

and free

they are equal no longer


:

because they have variously used their freedom


the hypothesis of more Avorlds than one
is

and

a complement,

on the one hand on the other hand


because
it

of the hypothesis of

human

freedom,

of the hypothesis of the divine justice,

accounts for the infinite diversities of condition,


for the discipline of reformation.

and gives scope

Large elements

of this theory

dominated in the theo-

logy of the Eastern Churches during the fourth century.

But

ultimately those parts of

it

which distinguished

it

from the theory of Irenseus faded away.


Christians

The mass of were content with a simpler creed. More


;

than one question remained unsolved


of creation

and the hypothesis

by a

rival

God was

part of the creed of a

Church which flourished


faded away, and
it

for several centuries before it

also left its traces in

many

inconsis-

tent usages within the circle of the communities


rejected
it.

which
and in

But the

belief in the unity of God,

the identity of the one


world,

God with

the Creator of the

was never again

seriously disturbed.

The

close

of the controversy
difierent,

was marked by its transference to a though allied, area. It was no longer Theolo-

gical but Christological.

The expression " Monarchy,"


government
of the one

which had been used


gods,

of the sole

God, in distinction from the divided government of many

came

to

be applied to the sole government of the

YII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.


*'

207

Father, in distinction from the

economy"
In
this

of the Father,

the Son, and the

Holy

Spirit.

new

area of con-

troversy the old conceptions re-appear.

The monistic

and

dualistic

theories of the origin of the world lie

beneath the two schools of Monarchianism, in one of

which Christ was conceived as a mode


the other as

of

God, and in

His exalted creature.

In the determination

of these Christological controversies

Greek philosophy
it

had a no
ments

less

important influence than

had upon the


ele-

controversies

which preceded them

and with some

of that determination

we

shall

be concerned in a

future Lecture.

We may sum up
universe,

the result of the influence of Greece

on the conception of God in His relation to the material

by saying

that

it

found a reasoned basis for

Hebrew monotheism.
nities to believe as

It helped the Christian

commuThe
influ-

an intellectual conviction that which

they had

first

accepted as a spiritual revelation.

moral

difficulties of

human

life,

and the Oriental

ences which were flowing in large mass over some parts


of the Christian world, tended towards ditheism.

But
is

the average opinion of thinking

men, which

the
for

ultimate solvent of

all

philosophical theories,

had

centuries past been settling

down

into the belief in the

unity of God.

"With a conviction which has been as

permanent as
difficulties in

it

was of slow growth,

it

believed that the

the hypothesis of the existence of a

Power

limited

by the existence

of a rival Power, are greater

even than the great

difficulties in

the belief in a

God

who

allows evil to be.

The dominant

Theistic philosophy

208

TII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.


of Chris-

of Greece
tianity.

became the dominant philosophy


form as well as

It prevailed in

in substance.

It laid emphasis on the conception of

God

as the Artificer
its

and Architect of the universe rather than as


Cause.

immanent

But though the substance


Platonism
is

"will

remain, the form


is

may

change.

not the only theory that

consistent with the fundamental thesis that

"of Him,
:

and through Him, and


is

to

Him, are

all

things " and

it

not impossible that, even after this long lapse of centhe Christian world

turies,

may come back

to that con-

ception of

Him

which was shadowed


far off

in the far-off ages,

and which has never been wholly without a witness,


that

He

is

"not
in

but very nigh;" that


that

"He

is

in

us and

we

Him;"

He

is

changeless and yet


;

changing in and with His creatures

and that

He who

"rested from His creation," yet so " worketh hitherto"


that the

moving universe

itself is

the eternal and unfold-

ing manifestation of

Him.

Lecture YIIT.

GEEEK AND CHEISTIAN THEOLOGY,


11.

The Moeal Goveenor.

A. The Greek Idea.


1.

The

idea of the unity of

God had grown,

as

we
of

have already seen, in a common growth with the idea


the unity of the world.

But
it

it

did not absorb that idea.

The dominant element

in the idea of

in the idea of the world

God was personality was order. But personality

implied will, and will seemed to imply the capacity to

change

whereas in the world, wherever order could be

traced, it

was fixed and unvarying.


in the

The order was most conspicuous


the heavenly bodies.

movements

of

It could be expressed

by numbers.
give to the

The philosopher
army.^

of

numbers was the


of

first to

world the name Cosmos, the "order" as of a marshalled

The order being capable

being expressed by

numbers, partook of the nature of numerical relations.

Those relations are not only fixed, but absolutely unalterable.

That a certain

ratio should

be otherwise than what


of

it is, is
1

inconceivable.

Hence the same philosopher


2. 1. 1 (Diels, p.

Aetius ap. Plut. de plac. phil.

327), Iiv9ay6pa<;

ar^wTOS wi/o/xacre t^v twv

oAwv

iripLoyi^v koct/j-ov Ik ttJs ev

avTw

rcigews.

210

VIII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.


first

numbers who had


of
it

conceived of

tlie

Cosmos conceived
,

also as being "invested with necessity," and the

metaphysicians

who

followed

bim framed the formula,


an older idea of Greek

"All things are by necessity."^


This conception linked
religion.
itself with

The length of a man's life and his measure of endowments had been spoken of as his " share" or " portion."

Sometimes the assigning

of this portion to a

man

was conceived as the work of Zeus or the other gods


sometimes the gods themselves had their portions like

men
It

and very commonly the portion


though
it

itself

was viewed
it

actively, as

were the activity of a special being.


:

was sometimes
any

personal, sometimes impersonal

was,

in

case, inevitable.^

Through

its

character of inevi-

tableness, it fused with the conception of the unalterable-

ness of physical order.

things are

by

necessity,"

Hence the proposition, "All soon came to be otherwise ex-

pressed, " All things are by destiny." ^


^

Aetius, ibid.

1.

25

(Diels, p. 321), Yivdayopa'i dvdyKrjv

effii]

Trepi-

Kela-Oai
"

tw

koct/xw'

XlapjUcvtSr^S Kal ArjfioKpLTO'S Travra

Kara dvayKi^v.

For

tlie

numerous passages which prove these statements, reference


to Nagelsbach,
3. 2. 2.
1.

may be made
^

Homerische Theologie,

2.

2.

3; Nacli-

homerische Theologie,
Aetius, ui supra,

27 (Diels,

p. 322),

'H/aaKAeiros iravTa KaO'


:

flfjLapiJLevrjv,

tyjv Se avTrjv VTrdp-^eiv

Kal dvdyKrjv

the identification of

uvdyK-r}

a a

made by Parraenides and Democritus in But in much later times continuation of the passage quoted above. distinction was sometimes drawn between the two words, dvdyKrj
and
elfiapixevq is also
:

being used of the subjective necessity of a proposition of which the AIba. Aphrcdia. QucBst. Nat. 2. 5 (p. 96, contradictory is unthinkable
ed. Spengel), recrcrapa

yovv

to. 81s

Svo e^ dvdyKi]<s, ov
elixapfxevqv
;

/xrjv

KaO

etfiap-

jLevqv ei ye iv rots yevofievois to


liand, oTs kclO
cti]

Ka&

but,

on the other

ilppov aiViajv yivopLevon to a/TtKci/xevov ddvvaTOt; irdvTa

av KaO

elfiapfjihriVt

VIII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

211

Over against the personal might of Zeus there thus came to stand the dark and formless fixity of an impersonal Destiny.^ The conception was especially elaborated by the Stoics. In the older mythology from which it had sprung, its personifications had been spoken of sometimes as the daughters of Zeus and Themis, and some-

times as the daughters of Night. 2 The former expressed


its certainty
its

and perfect order

the other, the darkness of

working.
It

The former element became more promi-

nent.

was an " eternal, continuous and ordered movement."^ It was ''the linked chain of causes."^ The
idea of necessity passed into that of intelligent and in-

herent force
that of law.

the idea of destiny was transmuted into

This sublime conception, which has become a perma-

nent possession of the

human

race,

was further elaborated

into the picture of the world as a great city.


zro'Ai?,

The Greek
times
is

the state, whose equivalent in


ecclesiastical,

modem

not

civil

but

was an ideal

society, the

embodied

type of a perfect constitution or organization


Its parts

(arua-rrnu.a').^

were

all

interdependent and relative to the

Nagelsbach, Nachhomerische Theologie, p. 142.

2 Hesiod, Theog. 218, 904.


^

Chrysippus, ap. Theodoret. Gr.

affect,

curat. 6. 14, c'vat 8e ttjv


:

tfiapfievr]v KivqcrLV dtSiov crvve^Tj

koI TeTayjxhrjv

SO, in

other words,

ap. Aul. Gell. 6. 2. 3.


*

Aetius ap. Plut, de placit. philos.


(i.

1.

28, 06 SrwtKot

ei/)/xov alriCiv:

Philo, de mut. nom. 23

598), aKoXovOta Kal avaXoyia. t(ov o-v/xrav:

Twv, dpixQv eyova-a aStaAurov

Ic.

de divin.

1.

55,

'

ordinem seriemque

causarum cum causa causae nexa


^ The Stoical definition of a 71 rwv i>7ro vo'/iov StotKou/zei/ov, Cl\ Didvmus, ap. Diels, p. 464.

em
At?
D.

ex so gignat.'

was

a-va-T-q/xa

Kal ttXijOos dvO^dj4.

Alex. Stroni.

2C

cf.

Ariua

p2

212
whole
;

VIII.

GREEK AND CHEISTIAN THEOLOGY.

the whole was flawless and supreme, working

out without friction the divine conception which

was
ideal

expressed in
society.^
its

its

laws.

The world was such an


and men
:

It consisted of gods
;

the former were

The moral law was a reason inherent in human nature, prescribing what men should do, and forbidding what they should not do
rulers

the

latter, its citizens.

1/

human laws were but appendages of it.^ man was a " citizen of the world." ^ To
man, as
to

In

this sense

each individual

every other created being, the administrators had assigned a special task. " Thou be Sun: thou hast
the power to go on thy circuit and
the seasons, to
lull

make

the year and

make

fruits

grow and

ripen, to stir

and

the winds, to

warm

the bodies of

men

go thy way,

make thy circuit, and


things and in great the

so fulfil

thy ministry alike in small


to lead

Thou hast the power


be Agamemnon.
:

army

to Ilium:

Thou hast the


be Achilles." To

power

to fight in

combat with Hector

this function of administration the

gods were limited.

The

constitution of the great city

was unchangeable.
:

* The idea is found in almost all Stoical writers Plutarch, de Alex. Magn. virt. 6, speaks of 17 iroAv Oavjxa^oixkvii TroAtTeia tov t)v Stwikwi/

aLpicTLv KaTa/3aXofJLvov Zt]vwvos

'

Chrysippus ap. Phfedr. Epicur. de


5, ed. Peerlk. p. IG-i
e'^

nat. Deoriim, ed. Petersen, p.

19: Muson. Frag.


1^

(from Stob. Flor. 40), tou Aios :rdAeus


deCiv
:

(rvvka-TqKiv

avdp(l)Tr(Jiv
:

KaX

Epict. Diss.

1, 9.

2. 13. 6

3.

22. 4

3. 24.

10
4,

most fully
ouVw nal o

in Arius Dielymus ap. Euseb.


KOO"/-IOS

Prcep. Evang. 15.

15.

OlOl'Cl TToAlS

tCTTtV iK

dcdv KOt dvdpWTTiOV

CTWCCTTOJIXa,

TWV ukv

Oiiov
*

Ti)i'

))yfjL0VLav e^^ovTWi/ tC)v 6


(ii.

dvOpwirtov VTroTeray^ercov.

Philo, de Josepho, 6

46),

Aoyos

Se eVrt ^I'crews T-pocrraKTiKu's

[j.ev (jjv

TrpaKTeov aTrayopevTLKos Se

wv ov

irpaKrkov .... irpocrOiiKOLL

ixtv

\ap

ot

Kara

TroAets I'ojxoi

tov

t>}s (^vcrecos

opdov Aoyov.

Epict. Diss. 3. 22.

VIII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

213

Tlie gods, like men, were, in the Stoical

conception,

bound by
" That

the conditions of things.


is

which

best of all things

have the gods placed in our

and supreme," says Epictetus, power the faculty of rightly deal-

ing with ideas

all

other things are out of our power.

Is it that

they would not ? I for my part think that if they had been able they would have placed the other things also in our power but
;

they absolutely could not.


if it liad

For what says Zeus

'

Epictetus,

been
is

possible, I

possessions free and unhindered.

would have made thy body and thy But as it is, forget not that

thy body

not thine, but only clay deftly kneaded.


this, I

And

since

I could not do

gave thee a part of myself, the power of


effort,

making

or not
;

making

dulging desire

in short, the

the power of indulging or not inpower of dealing with all the ideas

of thy mind."'i

by side with this conception of destiny were growing up new conceptions of the nature of the gods. The gods of wrath were passing away. The awe of the
2.

Side

forces of nature, of night

and thunder, of the whirlwind

and the earthquake, which had underlain the primitive religions, was fading into mist. The meaner conceptions which had resulted from a vividly realized anthropomorphism, the malice and spite and intrigue which

make

some parts of the


scandaleuse of a

earlier

mythology read
court,

like the chronique

European

were passing into the

region of ridicule and finding their expression only in


burlesque.

Two

great conceptions, the elements of which


earliest religion,

had existed in the


their supremacy.
also good.

gradually asserted

The gods were

just,

and they were

They punished wicked deeds, not by an arbitrary vengeance, but by the operation of unfailing laws.
1

Epict. Diss.

1.

1.

10;

cf.

Seneca, de Provid.

5. 7,

'non potest
it

artifex
tion,

mutare mateiiam.'

But Epictetus sometimes makes


e.g.

a ques

not of possibility, but of will,

Diss. 4. 3. 10.

214

VIII.

GREEK AND CHEISTIAN THEOLOGY.


of the highest conceivable

The laws were the expression


morality.

Their penalties were personal to the offender,


this life paid

and the sinner who did not pay them in

them

after death.

of their kindness,

The gods were also good. The idea which in the earlier religion had been

a kindness only for favoured individuals, widened out to


a conception of their general benevolence.^ ception of their forethought, which at
first

The con-

had only been

that of wise provision in particular cases, linked itself

with the Stoical teleology .2 The God who was the Eeason
of the world, and

immanent

in

it,

was working

to

an end.
also

That end was the perfection of the whole, which was


the perfection of each

member

of the whole.

In the

sphere of

human

life,

happiness and perfection, misery

and imperfection, are linked together.


or ''Providence" of

The forethought
It

God was

thus beneficent in regard

both to the universe itseK and to the individual.

worked by
tetus,^
\

self-acting laws.

"There
it

are," says Epic-

"punishments appointed as

were by law to
"Whoever

those

who

disobey the divine administration.


is

thinks anything to be good that


his will, let that
let

outside the range of

man

feel

envy and unsatisfied longing


;

him be him

flattered, let

him be unquiet
is

whoever thinks

anything to be evil that


let feel

outside the range of his will,

pain and sorrow, let him bemoan himself and

be unhappy."
^

And

again:

"This

is

the law

divine
Nach-

The data
which

for the long history of the

moral conceptions of Greek

religion

are briefly indicated


:

above are far too numerous to be


of titles applied
tAao-Kco-^o*.

given in a note
to God, e.g. in
2

the student
i.

is

referred to Xiigclsbach, Die


list

homerische Tlieologic,

17

58.

One may note the

Dio Chrysostoni, and the diminishing use of


1. 6.

Epict. Diss.

3 j^isg^ 3. 11. 1.

7III.

GREEK AND CHEISTIAN THEOLOGY.

215
greatest

and strong and beyond escape


sins.

which exacts the

punishments from those who have sinned the greatest

For what says

it ?

the things that do not concern him, let

The man who lays claim to him be a braggart,


disobeys the divine
let

him be vainglorious administration, let him slave, let him feel grief, let him bemoan himself
let
:

the

man who

be mean-spirited,

him be a
;

and jealousy, and pity

in short,

and be unhappy."

There were thus at the beginning

of the Christian era


of the super-

two concurrent conceptions of the nature

human

forces

which determine the existence and control


all

the activity of

created things,

the conceptions of

Destiny and of Providence. The two conceptions, though


apparently antagonistic, had tended, like
all

conceptions

which have a strong hold upon masses


each other.

of

men, to approach
in the

The meeting-point had been found


It

conception of the fixed order of the world as being at

once rational and beneficent.

was

rational because
;

it

was the embodiment

of the highest reason


is is

and

it

was

beneficent because happiness

incident to perfection,

and the highest reason, which


tion of the whole, is also the
parts.

the law of the perfec-

law of the perfection of the


this

There were two stages in


:

blending of the

two conceptions into one the identification, fii'st of Destiny with Eeason;^ and, secondly, of Destiny or Eeason
1 2

Diss.

3.

24. 42, 43.


is

Destiny
1.

Eeason

Heraclitus ap, Aet. Placit in Plut. de placit


1. 5.

pMlos.

28. 1; Stob.

Ed.

15 (Diels,

p. 323), oio-cai' dixapfiepr^s


:

Aoyov Tov 8ta t^s


tfMap[Xvrj tcTTiv o

ovcrtas

tou Travros Si7y/<ovTa

Chrysippus, ibid.
Koa-fxco
to,

TOV

KocTfJLov

Aoyos

17

Adyos Twv v Tw
yeyovdra yeyoj/e

Trpovoi^

owtKov/xevwi/

rj

Adyos Kad ov

to. /iev

8e

yivoneva

216

VIII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

with Providence.^
raclitus,

The former

of these is

found in Hedistinguishes

but

is

absent from Plato,

who

what comes into being by necessity, from what is wrought by mind: the elaboration of both the former and the latter is due to the Stoics, growing logically out of their
conception of the universe as a single substance

moved

many cases a change rather of language than of idea when Destiny or Eeason or Providence was spoken of as God ^ and yet
by an inherent law.
It

was probably

in

sometimes, whether by the lingering of an ancient belief


or

by an
all

intuition

which transcended

logic, the sense of

personality mingles wdth the idea of physical sequence,

and

things that happen in the infinite chain of


:

immu-

ytVerai

to, Se ycvr^cro/xeva yev7;creTai

Zeno

ap. Ar.

Did. Epit. pliys. 20,

iu Stob.

EcL

1.

11. 5 (Diels, p. 458), tov tou ttuvtos

Xoyov ov

evioc

et/xap/ievTjv KaXov(TLV.
^

Destiny, or Reason,

is

Providence
:

Clirysippus, in the quotation

given in the preceding note


15 (Diels,
2

Zeno

ap. Aet. Flacit. in Stob.

Ed.

1. 5.

p.

322).
is

Destiny, Reason, Providence,

God, or the "Will of God

Chry-

sippus in Plut. de Stoic, repug. 34.


T7JS (fivcrews

5,

on

S'

7;

Koin) t^wts koI 6 kolvo<s


toi'S

Xoyos

ilfiapfievy]

Kal irpovoia Ka\ Zer's ecTTtv ovSe


vtt

uiTtS*

TTOoa? XiX^]6e' Trai'Tayou

yap Tavra OpuXecTai


(fit](Tlv

avrQv' Kal 'Atos

eVcAeteTO fSovX^]' tuv 0/x7/pov dpyjKevat


(TTi

[sc.

o X/3U(rt7r7ros] op^ws
c})vcnv

TTjv Lp,apiXvi)v (ivacjiepovTa


:

Kal

tt^v*

twv oAcuv

Kad

ijv

Trdura

StoiKUTat.
e;(ii'

id.

de commmi. not. 34.


>]

5,

ouSe ToijAa;^ta-Tov
/3ovXi]<tlv
:

ecm

twi' [lepujv

aAAws dXX

Kara

Trjv

rov Aios

Arius Didymus,
:

Ejnt. ap. Euseb. Prcep. Ev. 15. 15 (Diels, p. 464)


piet. frag. ed.

Philodecius, de

Gomportz,

p.

83 (Diels,
p. 30G),

p. 549).

The more
is

exact state1. 7.

ment
Stob.

is

in the
1. 2.

summary

of Aetius ap. Plat, de placit. pliilos.

17,

Ed.

29 (Diels,

where God

said to

comprehend
iljiap^

within Himself rois


jj.k\n)v

o~7rep[j.aTLKovi

Xoyovs Kad' ous aTravra Kad'

yiveTai.

Tlie loftiest
2.

Lucan, Pharsal.
of i\ite or

form of the conception is expressed by 10, 'se quoque lege tenens:' God is not tke slave
it.

Law, but voluntarily binds Himself by

VIII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

217

table causation are conceived as

happening by the will of


of a perfect

God.
3.

But over against the conception

Eeason

or Providence administering the world, was the fact of

the existence of physical pain and social inequality and

moral
filled

failure.

a large

The problems which the fact suggested place in later Greek philosophy, and were
ways.

solved in

many

The

solution

was sometimes found in the denial

of the

universality of Providence.

God

is

the Author only of

good: evil

is

due

to other causes.^

This view, which

found
Plato,

its first

philosophical expression in the Timceus of


of the Platonic

was transmitted, through some


In
its

schools, to the later syncretist writers

who
it

incorporated

Platonic elements.

Platonic form

assumed the

existence of inferior agents

who

ultimately

owed

their

existence to God, but whose existence as authors of evil

He

permitted or overlooked.
itself

In some

later

forms the

view linked

with Oriental conceptions of matter as

inherently evil.

The
* Plat.

solution

was more commonly found


379, 380
;

in a denial

Rep.

2, pp.

Tim.

p. 41.

Pliilo,

de mund. opif.

24

(i,

17), de confus. ling.


rrjv ewl
"''0^5

35

(i.

432), 6^^ yap

t^

iravr]yejxovL k^iirpeirh

ovK eSo^ev crvat


yrja-at'

ov X^P'^'

KaKiav oSov Iv ^'^XV ^oyiKrj 8i lavTOV 8r]/XL0vpfier avrov iireTpeif/e t-)]^ tovtov tov [xepovs Karacr556), avayKalov ovv rjyrjcraTO T7)v KaKcav ycvecnv

Kivrjv:

deprofvg. 13

(i.

trepois aTTOveifiai Srjp.Lovpyoi'S Trjv 8e

twv dya^wi' eavTw povca

SO also

in the (probably) post-Philonean de

Abraham. 28

(ii.

22).

The other

phase of the conception

is

stated

tion of the difficulty, but as one


i^apKi.1 Se ets ttAtJ^os elprjcrOai

by Celsus, not as a philosophical soluwhich might be taught to the vulgar,


deov pikv ovk Ictti kuko. vXtj 8i

(is

vpocTKeLTai.

218

VIII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

of the reality of apparent evils.

They were

all

either

forms of good, or incidental to


to its

its

operation or essentia)

production.
It

Stoics.

This was the common solution of the had many phases. One view was based upon

the teleological conception of nature.

The world

is

march-

ing on to

its
:

end

it realizes its

purpose not directly but

by degrees there are necessary sequences of its march which seem to us to be evil.^ Another view, akin to the
preceding,
as a whole.
tions

was based upon the conception of the world In its vast economy there are subordinaSuch subordinaof the plan.

and individual inconveniences.


of the individual is not

tions

and inconveniences are necessary parts


an
"
evil,

The pain

but his contri-

What about my leg being lamed, then ?" says Epictetus,^ addressing himself
bution to the good of the whole.
in the character of

an imaginary objector.

"Slave

do

you
will

really find fault

with the world on account of one


to the universe ?
it

bit of a leg ? will

you not give that up


go
? will

you not

let it

you not gladly surrender


in other words,

to the

Giver ?"

The world,
{oIkovoixlo)^

was regarded
which

as an economy

like that of a city, in

there are apparent inequalities of condition, but in which


^

This

is

one of tho solutions offered by Chrysippus

the concrete

form of the
Kara

difficulty,

with which he

dealt,

was

at

twv

di'^pwTrojv voVot

and his answer was that diseases come Kara irapnon per naturam sed per sequellas quasdam necessarias,' Aul. Gell. 7 (G). 1. 9. So also in the long fragment of Philo in Euset. Pra;p. Ev. 8. 13 (Philo, ii. 643, G-44), ^eos yap ovSevos atVios KaKov to
(fivaiv y'lvovTai,
'

aKoXovOrjo-iv,

TTapdivav

d\X

at rtuv (rroi^etwi/ yLtera/JoAat Ta{;Ta yevvwcrtv, ov Trpoi]yov-

fieva (pyo- (fivaews cIAA. 7ro/i.va rots ai'ayKatois

xal tois vpo^^yovp-kvoii

iTraKoXovdovvTa.
2

Diss.

1.

12. 24.

YIII.

GREEK AND CHEISTIAN THEOLOGY.

210

Bucli inequalities are necessary to the constitution of the

whole.^

"What

is

meant, then," asks Epictetus,


'

"by
if

distinguishing
'
'

the things that happen to us as


trary to nature
'

according to nature

The phrases
'

are used as

and conwe were isolated.


'

For example, to a foot to be according to nature is to be clean; but if you consider it as a foot, a member of the body, and not as isolated, it will be its duty both to walk in mud, and to tread on thorns nay, sometimes even to be cut off for the benefit of

if it refuse, it is no longer a foot. We have to form a similar conception about ourselves. What are you ? A man. If you regard yourself as isolated, it is 'according to

the whole body

to live until old age, to be rich, to be in good health you regard yourself as a man, a part of a certain whole, it is your duty, on account of that whole, sometimes to be ill, sometimes to take a voyage, sometimes to run into danger, sometimes to be in want, and, it may be, to die before your time. Why then are you discontented ? Do you not know that, as in the example a discontented foot is no longer a foot, so neither are you a man. For what is a man ? A member of a city, first the city which consists of gods and men, and next of the city which is so called in the more proximate sense, the earthly city, which is a small model of the whole. 'Am I, then, now,' you

nature

'

but

if

say,

'

to be brought before a court


:

is

so-and-so to
:

fall into

fever
to be

so-and-so to go on a voyage

so-and-so to die

so-and-so

sort of

condemned V Yes body we have, with


;

for it is impossible, considering the

this

atmosphere round

us,

and with

these companions of our


" It is

life,

that different things of this kind

should not befall different men.^

on

this account that the philosophers rightly tell us

that

if

a perfectly good
to him,

happen
^

man had foreknown what was going to he would co-operate with nature in both falling
2, ap.

Chrysippus, de Diis,

Plut. de Stoic, repug. 35, ttotc filv


ov)( ojcnrep rots
(jiOTrep iv

to,

Zva-y^prjcna (rvjxf3alvi rots

dya^ois

(pavXoa

KoA-acrecus

\o.piv
2

aAAa

KttT
5.

aXXr^v otKovoju,iav
24.

rats

TroAecrii'.

Diss. 2.

220
sick

VIII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

and dying and being maimed, being conscious that this is is assigned to him in the arrangement of the universe, and that the whole is supreme over the part, and the city over the citizen."^
the particular portion that

This Stoical solution,


underlies
it

if

the teleological conception which

be assumed,

may have been

adequate as an

explanation both of physical pain and of social inequality.

But it was clearly inadequate as an explanation of misery and moral evil. And the sense of misery and moral evil was growing. The increased complexity of social life revealed the distress which it helped to create, and the
intensified consciousness of individual life

quickened also

the sense of disappointment and moral shortcoming.


solution of the difficulties
sented,

The

which these

facts of

life pre-

was found in a

belief

which was

correlative to

the growing belief in the goodness of God, though logically inconsistent

with the belief in the universality of


It was, that

His Providence.
their

men were

the authors of

own

misery.

Their sorrows, so far as they were

not punitive or remedial, came from their


perversity.

own

folly or

They belonged

to a

margin

of life

which

was outside the

will of the gods or the ordinances of fate.

The
is

belief

was repeatedly expressed by Homer, but does


:

not appear in philosophy until the time of the Stoics

it

found in both Cleanthes and Chrysippus, and the latter

also quotes it as a belief of the Pythagoreans.^


it

Out

of

came the solution


it

of a

problem not
itself

less

important than

that from which that

had

sprung.

The conception
free.

men were

free to bring ruin

upon themselves, led

to the
1

wider conception that they were altogether

Diss. 2. 10. 6.

Aul. Gell. 7

(6). 2.

1215.

VIII.

GEEEK

AJfD CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

221

There emerged for the

first

time into prominence the

idea which has filled a large place in all later theology

and

ethics, that of the

freedom of the

will.

The freedom
to

which was denied

to external nature

was asserted of
do

human

natiu'e.

It

was within a man's own power


happy or miserable.
is

right or wrong, to be
"

Of

all

things that are," says Epictetus,^ " one part


;

in our

control, the other out of it

in our control are opinion, impulse

to do, effort to obtain, effort to avoid


activities
office
;

in a word, our own proper


Things
]

out of our control are our bodies, property, reputation,!


all

in a word,

things except our proper activities.

in our control are in their nature free, not liable to hindrance in

the doing or to frustration of the attainment

things out of our

control are weak, dependent, liable to hindrance, belonging to

Bear in mind, then, that if you mistake what is depenis free, and what belongs to others for what is your own, you will meet with obstacles in your way, you will
others.

dent for what

be regretful and disquieted, you will find fault \vith both gods and men. If, on the contrary, you think that only to be your own which is really your own, and that which is another's to be,
as
it

really

is,

another's,

no one will thwart you, you will find

fault

with no one, you will reproach no one, you will do no single

thing against your will, no one will

harm

you, you will not have

an enemy."

The

incompatibility of this doctrine with that of the

universality of Destiny or Eeason or Providence

"antinomy
lines,
it

of the practical

understanding"

was

tha
not

always observed.- The two doctrines marched on parallel

them was sometimes stated as though had no limitations. The harmony of them, which is
and each
of

indicated

by both Cleanthes and Chrysippus, and which

underlies a large part of both the theology and the ethics


^

Endu

1.

Kg.

Sext. Empir. Pyrr. 3.

9.

222

VIII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.


:

of Epictetus, is in effect this


its

The world marches od

to

end, realizing

its

own

perfection,

with absolute cerin that

tainty.

The majority

of its parts

move

march

unconsciously, with uo sense of pleasure or pain, no idea


of good or evil.

To man

is

given the consciousness of

action, the sense of pleasure

and pain, the idea


between them.

of

good
If

and

evil,

and freedom
is

of choice

he

chooses that which

against the
;

movement

of nature,

he chooses for himself misery


is

if

he chooses that which


finds happiness.

in accordance with that

movement, he

In either case the movement of nature goes on, and the

man

fulfils his

destiny:

''

Ducunt volentem fata^ nolentem

traliuntr^

It is a

man's true function and high privilege

so to educate his

that to

mind and discipline his will, as to think be best which is really best, and that to be avoided
:

which nature has not willed

in other words, to acqui-

esce in the will of God, not as submitting in passive

resignation to the power of one

who

is

stronger, but as

having made that will his own.^


If a

man

realizes this, instead of

bemoaning the
to

diffi-

culties of

life,

he will not only ask God


for them.

send them,

but thank

Him

This

is

the Stoical theodicy.

The

life

and teaching of Epictetus are for the most part


it.

a commentary upon

Seneca, Ep. 107. 11

a free Latin rendering of one of the verses

of Cleanthes quoted from Epictetus in Lecture VI. p. 157.


'^

Seneca, Dial.

1. 5.

quid est boni viril prrebere se


quicquid est quod nos
deos adligat.
ille

fato.

grande

solatium est

cum

universo rapi.

sic vivere, sic

mori

jussit, eadeoi necessitate et

inrevocB bills

humana

pariter ac divina ';ursus vehit.


stripsit

ipse

omnium

conil'tor et rector

quidcm

fata,

sed scquitur.

seniner paret, semcl jussit.

VIII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.


you have
;

223
1

"Look

at the powers

and when you have looked at

God, what difficulty Thou wilt; for I them, say, 'Bring me, have the equipment which Thou hast given me, and the means
for

making

all

things that happen contribute to

my

adornment.'

'

Nay, but that

is

not what you do

at the thought of

what may

sometimes shuddering happen, sometimes bewailing and


:

you

sit

grieving and groaning over what does happen.


fault with the gods
!

Then you

find

For what but impiety

is

the consequence

of such degeneracy

And

yet

God
but

has not merely given you

these powers by which

we may
it,

bear whatever happens without


also, like

"^

being lowered or crushed by


true Father that

the good

King and
it

He

is,

has given to this part of you the capacity

of not being thwarted, or forced, or hindered,

and has made

absolutely your own, not even reserving to Himself the power of thwarting or hindering
"
it."^

What words

are sufficient to praise or worthily describe the


?

gifts of

Providence to us

If

we were

really wise,

what should

we have been
God, and bless God, 'Great
;

doing in public or in private but sing

hymns
?

to

Him and

recount His

gifts (ras

yipnai)

Digging

we not to be singing this hymn to God for having given us these tools for tilling the ground great is God for having given us hands to work with and throat to swallow with, for that we grow unconsciously and breathe while we sleep ? This ought to be our hymn for everyor ploughing or eating, ought
is
'

thing: but the chiefest and divinest

hymn should be for His having given us the power of understanding and of dealing since most of you are utterly bKnd rationally with ideas. Nay
to this

function,

be some one to make this his special and to sing the hymn to God for all the rest ? What else can a lame old man like me do but sing hymns to God ? If I were a nightingale, I should do the work of a nightingale if a swan, the work of a swan but being as I am a rational being, I must sing hymns to God. This is my work this I do this
to
;

ought there not

rank
with

as
me

far as I

can

I will not leave


Epict. Diss,
1. 6.

and I invite you

to join

in this

same song."^
1

3740.

Hid.

16.

15 2 L

224

VIII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.


B.

The Christian

Idea.

In primitive Christianity we find ourselves in another


sphere of ideas
:

we seem

to

be breathing the
us,

air of Syria,

with Syrian forms moving round

and speaking a lan-

guage which
with
its

is

not familiar to us.

For the Greek

city,

orderly government,

we have

to substitute the

picture of

an Eastern sheyk, at once the paymaster of

his dependents

and

their judge.

Two

conceptions are

dominant, that of wages for work done, and that of positive law.
1.

The idea

of

moral conduct as work done for a

master

who

will in

due time pay wages for

it,

was a

natural growth on Semitic


fellahin^ to

whom

the day's

soil. It grew up among the work brought the day's wages,

and whose work was scrutinized before the wages wero


paid.
It is

found in many passages of the I^ew Testaall

ment, and not least of

in the discourses of our Lord.


of the

The

ethical problems

which had vexed the souls

writers of Job and the Psalms, are solved

by the teaching

that the wages are not

all

paid now, but that some of

them

are in the keeping of the Father in heaven.

The

persecuted are consoled by the thought, " Great are your

wages in heaven."^ Those who do


wages stored up
not go without
for

their alms before

men

receive tbeir wages in present reputation, and have no

them

in heaven.-

The

smallest act

of casual charity, the giving of a cup of cold water, will


its

wages.^

at the return of the


1

Son
S.

of

The payment will be made Man, whose " wages are with
G.

S.

Matthew,

5.

12;

Luke,
9.

23.

Ibid.

6.

1.

Ihid.

10.42; S.Mark,

41.

VIIT.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

225

him
to

to give to every
is

man

according as his work is."^

So fundamental

the conception that

"he

that cometh
is,"

God must

believe," not only ''that


their

He

but also

that

He "pays

due

to

them that seek

after

Him."^

L/

still

So also in the early Christian literature which moved within the sphere of Syrian ideas. In the " Two
is

Ways," what

given in charity should be given without


it
:

murmuring, for God will repay


with that of the judge.*
respect of persons
:

in the Epistle of
is

Barnabas, the conception of the paymaster

blended

"The Lord

judges without

every one shall receive according as


shall

he has done
before

if

he be good, his righteousness


of his

go

him

if

he be wicked, the wages

wicked-

ness are before his face."


2.

God

is at

once the Lawgiver and the Judge.


is

The

underlying conception

that of an Oriental sovereign


is

who

issues definite

commands, who

gratified

by obe-

made angry by disobedience, who gives prewho please him and punishes those with whom he is angry. The punishments which he inflicts are vindictive and not remedial. They are the manifestation of his vengeance against unrighteousness. They are external to the ofi'ender. They follow on the offence by the sentence of the judge, and not by a self-acting
dience and
sents to those law.

He

sends

men

into

punishment.

^
/ico-^os

The introduction
1

into this primitive Christianity of


so Barnab. 21. 3
:

Revelation, 22, 12

eyyvs 6 Kvpios kuI 6

avTov.
^

Hebrews, 11.
Didaclie,

6.

4. 7, Y'wcri]

yap

rts ecrriv o rov fiicrOov

KaAos avTairoSorr)^.

Bariiab. 4. 12.

226

VIII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.


diffi-

the ethical conceptions of Greek philosophy, raised


culties

which were long in being

solved,

if

indeed they

can be said to have been solved even now.


these difficulties were,
(i.)

The

chief of

the relation of the idea of


(ii.)

forgiveness to that of law;

the relation of the con-

ception of a Moral Governor to that of free-will.


(i.)

The

Christian conception of

God on

its ethical

side

was dominated by the idea

of the forgiveness of sins.

who had issued commands: He was a Householder who had entrusted His servants with powers to be used in His service. As Sovereign, He

God was

a Sovereign

could, at

His pleasure, forgive a breach of His orders

as Householder,
to

He

could remit a debt which was due

Him

from His servants.

The

sj)ecial

message of the

Gospel was, that God was willing to forgive


transgressions,

men

their

and

to remit their debts, for the sake of

Jesus Christ.
I

The corresponding Greek conception had

'/^

come

to

be dominated by the idea of order.

The order
It

If

(was rational

and beneficent, but

it

was

universal.

The punishment There was a of its violation came by a self-acting law. possibility of amendment, but there was none of remisEach of these conceptions is consistent with itseK sion.
could not be violated with impunity.
:

each by

itself

furnishes the basis of a rational theology.

But

the two conceptions are apparently irreconcilable


;

with each other

and the history


is

of a large part of early

Christian theology
cile

the history of endeavoui's to recon-

world,

The one conception belonged to a moral by a Personality who set forces in motion the other to a physical world, controlled by a force which was also conceived as a Personality. Stated
them.
controlled
;

VIII.

GEEEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

227

in Christian terms, the one resolved itself into the proposition,

God

is

good; the other into the proposition,


propositions seemed at
:

God

is just.

The two

first to

be
"p

inconsistent with each other


nite love of

on the one hand, the

infi;

God excluding

the idea of punishment

on

the other hand. His immutable righteousness excluding

the idea of forgiveness.^

The

difficulty

seemed insoluble,

except upon the hypothesis of the existence of two Gods.

by the conception that the second God had been created by the first, and was ultimately subordinate to Him. In the theology of
The ditheism was sometimes
veiled

Marcion, which

filled

a large place in the Christianity of

both the second and the third centuries, ditheism was


presented as the only solution of this and
contrasts of
all

the other
of

which the world


is

is full,

and

of

which that

Law and
^

Grace

the most typical example.-

The

ISTew

These conceptions of the

earliest Christian philosopliers are stated,


2. 5. 1
:

in order to be nioditied, by Origen, de princ.

existimant igitur

bonitatem affectum talem


etiam
tur
si

quemdam

esse

quod bene

fieri

omnibus debeat

indignus

sit is

cui beneficium datur nee bene consequi mereaesse talem qui unicuique

.... Justitiam vero putarunt affectum


. . .
.

prout meretur retribuat

ut secundum sensum ipsorum Justus

malis non videatur bene veils sed velut odio


^

quodam

ferri
'

adversus eos.

The

title of

Marcion's chief work was 'AvTl^ec^e^s,


is

Contrasts': the

extent to which his opinions prevailed


testimony,
T'/]s

shown both by contemporary


Kara
Trai-

e.g.

Justin

M. Apol.
by the

1.

26, os

yevos av6pwiriav Sia


/3Aa(j</)i//^ias

Twv

8at/i.oi'OJv

(jvXX'i]\p(.oi<i

TToXXovs

TreTrolrjKe

Xkyetv,

Iren. 3. 3. 4,

and

also

fact that the

Churches into which his

adherents were organized flourished side

Churches for many centuries (there


dated a.d. 318, in Le Bas et

by side with the Catholic an inscription "of one of them, Waddington, vol. iii. iSTo. 2558, and they
is

had not died out


Quinisext.
c.

at the
:

time of the TruUan Council in a.d. 692, Cone.

95)

the importance which was attached to

him

is

shown

by the
Martyr,

large place
Ii'enteus,

which he occupies in

early controversies, Justin

the Clementines, Origen, TertuUiau, being at pains

to refute him.

^ n

228

VIII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.


of the

Testament was the revelation


of love
;

good God, the God

the Old Testament was that of the just God,


of wrath.

the

God

Redemption was the victory

of for-

giveness over punishment, of the

by Jesus Christ over the


Law.

God who was revealed God who was manifested in the


was
itself

The

ditheistic hypothesis
it

more

difficult

than

the difficulties which

explained.

The

writers

who

opposed

it

were helped, not only by the whole current


but also by the dominant ten-

of evangelical tradition,

dencies of both philosophy and popular religion.


insisted that justice

They

and goodness were not only comjustice

patible but necessarily co-existent in the Divine nature.


'

Goodness meant not indiscriminating beneficence

meant not inexorable wrath


combined in the power
of

goodness and justice were


to deal

God

with every

man

according to his deserts, including in the idea of deserts


.

that of repentance.

The

solution is found in Ireneeus,

who

argues that in

the absence of either of the two attributes,


cease to be
" If the

God would
bestow

God
also good, so as to

God who judges be not

favours on those on
lie should,

whom He

ought, and to reprove those

whom

Judge neither wise nor just. On the other hand, if the good God be only good, and not also able to test those on whom He shall bestow His goodness, He will be uutside goodness as well as outside justice, and His goodness will seem imperfect, inasmuch as it does not save all, as it should do if it be not accompanied with judgment. Marcion, therefore, l)y dividing God into two, the one a God who judges, and the other a God who is good, on both sides puts an end to God."*

He

will he as a

1 Iren. 3. 25. 2.

VIII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

229

It is

found in Tertullian, who, after arguing on a priori

grounds that the one attribute implies the other, passes

by an almost unconscious

transition

from physical

to

moral law: just as the ''justice" of

God
it

in its physical

operation controlled His goodness in the


orderly world, so in
Fall, regulated
its

making

of an

moral operation

has, since the

His dealings with mankind.

is good which is unjust; all that is just is good where the just is. From the beginning of the workl the Creator has been at once good and just. The two qualities came forth together. His goodness formed the world, His justice

"Nothing
is

The good

harmonized
tion

it.

It is the

work

of justice that there

is

a separa-

between light and darkness, between day and night, between heaven and earth, between the greater and the lesser lights As goodness brought all things into being, so did justice distin-

The whole universe has been disposed and ordered Every position and mode of the the movement and the rest, the rising and the setting elements,
guish them.

by the

decision of His justice.

of each one of them, are judicial decisions of the Creator

When
God

evil

broke out, and the goodness of

God came hence-

forward to have an opponent to contend with, the justice also of


acquired another function, that of regulating the operation
it
:

of His goodness according to the opposition to

the result
is

is

that His goodness, instead of being absolutely free,

dispensed
is

according to men's deserts

it

is

offered to the worthy, it

denied to the unworthy,


it is

it is

taken away from the unthankful,

avenged on

all its adversaries.


is

In

this
:

way

this

whole

function of justice

an agency

for goodness

in condemning, in
it,

punishing, in raging with wrath, as


it

you

JMarcionites express

does good and not evil."^

It is

found in the Clementines,^ the " Eecognitions


it

going so far as to make the acceptance of


1

an element

Tert.

c.

Marc.

2. 11, 12.

Homil.L 13;

9.

19;

18. 2,3.

230

VIII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.


it is

in " saving knoTrledgc :" "


to kno^Y that
is

not enough for salvation


also that

God

is

good

wc must know
it is

He

just."^

It is elaborated
;

by both Clement

of

Alex-

andria^ and Origen

but in the latter

linked closely

with other problems, and his view will be best considered


in relation to them.^

The Christian world

in his time

was

settling

down
mind

into a general acceptance of the belief

that goodness and justice co-existed, each limiting the

other in the

of

God

the general effect of the con-

troversy was to emj)hasize in Christianity the conception


of

God
(ii.)

as a

Moral Governor, administering the world by


problem
of the relation of goodness to

laws Avhich were at once beneficent and just.

But

this

justice passed, as the corresponding

problem in Greek

philosophy passed, into the problem of the relation of a

good God

to

moral

evil.
its

The

difficulties of the

problem

Iwere increased in

Christian form

by the conception

of moral evil as guilt rather than as misery, and by the

emphasis which was laid on the idea of the Divine fore-

knowledge.

The problem was


" If
evil,

stated in its plainest form

by Marcion

God

is

good, and prescient of the future, and able to avert

why

did

He

allow man, that

is

to say

His own image and

hkeness, nay more, His

own

substance, to be tricked
?

by the
if

devil and fall from obedience to the law into death

For

He

had been good, and thereby unwilling that such an event should happen, and prescient, and thereby not ignorant that it would happen, and powerful, and thereby able to prevent its happening, it would certainly not have happened, being impossible under But since it did these three coii(li':ions of divine greatness.
1

Recogn.

3.

37.
p. 233.

Especially Padag.

1. 8, 9.

See below,

Vin. GEEEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.


happen, the inference
is

231

certain that

God must be

believed to be

neither good nor prescient nor powerful."^

The hypothesis

of the existence of

two Gods, by which

Marcion solved this and other problems of theology,


consistently opposed

was

by the great mass of the Christian communities. The solution which they found was almost
uniformly that of the Stoics
production of moral virtue
there
It
is
: :

evil is necessary for the

there

is

no virtue where
free to choose.

no choice

and man was created

was found,
"

in short, in the doctrine of free-will.


is

This solution

found in Justin Martyr


is to

The nature
:

of every created being

be capable of vice

and virtue for no one of them would be an object of praise if it had not also the power of turning in the one direction or the
other." 2

It is
"
is

found in Tatian
of the

Each

two

classes of created things

(men and angels)

born with a power of self-determination, not absolutely good by nature, for that is an attribute of God alone, but brought to perfection through freedom of voluntary choice, in order that the

bad man may be justly punished, being himself the cause of his being wicked, and that the righteous man may be worthily praised for his good actions, not having in his exercise of moral
freedom transgressed the will of God."^
It is
"

found in Irenseus
as in angels, for angels also are rational beings,

In

man

has placed the power of choosing, so that those


;

God who have obeyed

who have

might justly be in possession of what is good and that those not obeyed may justly not be in possession of what is good, and may receive the punishment which they deserve But if it had been by nature that some were bad and others
1

ap. Tert.

c.

Marc.

2. 5.

j^p^i g. 7.

* Tatian, Orat.

ad

Grcec. 7.

232

VIII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

good, neither would the latter be deserving of praise for beiug


good, inasmuch as they were so constituted
;

nor the others of

inasmuch as they were born so. But since in fact all men are of the same nature, able on the one hand to hold fast and to do what is good, and again on the other hand to reject it and not do it, it is right for them to be in the one case praised for their choice of the good and their adherence to it, and in the other case blamed and punished for their rejection of it, both among well-governed men and much more in the sight

blame

for beiug bad,

of God."i

It is

fouud in Theopliilns^ and Athenagoras,^ and, as a


in Tertiillian

more elaborate theory,


of Alexandria.

and the philosophers

Just as Epictetus and the later Stoics


will to be the specially divine part

had made freedom of


of

human nature, so Tertullian* answers Marcion's objection, that if God foreknew that Adam would fall He
should not have made him
the goodness of

God

in

free, by the argument that making man necessarily gave him

the highest form of existence, that such highest form

was

''the

image and likeness of God," and that such


of will.

image and likeness was freedom


moral
discipline,

And

just as
life

Epictetus and the later Stoics had conceived of

as a

and

of its apparent evils as necessary

means
of

of testing character, so the Christian philosophers

Alexandria conceive of God as the Teacher and Trainer


of life as being disof sin as being not

and Physician of men, of the pains


ciplinary,

and of the punishments

vindictive but remedial.^

Iren. 4. 37.

Ad

Autoh

2.

27.

Legcit. 31.
5

* c.
1,

Marc.

2. 5.
2. 10.

E.g. Clem. Alex. Pccilag.


:

1; Origen, de princ.

G;

c.

OeU,

6.

56

so

all

Tert. Scorjy. 5.

VIII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.


still

233

There was

a large marg'm of unsolved difficulties.


it

The hypothesis
sessed
it

of the freedom of the will, as

had|
pos-

hitherto been stated, assumed that all beings

who

were equal in both their circumstances and their


It took

natural aptitudes.
difference

no account of the enormous

between one man and another in respect of

either the external advantages or disadvantages of their


lives, or

the strength and weakness of their characters.

The

difficulty

was strongly

felt

by more than one


so because
it

school

of Christian philosophers, the

more

applied,
also
to*

not only to the diversities

among mankind, but


mankind
as a

the larger differences between

whole and

the celestial beings

who

rose in their sublime gradations

above

it.

"Very many
it is

persons, especially those

who come from

the

school of Marcion and Valentinus and Basilides, object to us that

God in making the world to some creatures an abode in the heavens, and not merely a better abode, but also a loftier and more honourable position to grant to some principahty, to others powers, to others dominations to confer upon some the noblest seats of the heavenly tribunals, to cause others to shine out with brighter rays, and to flash forth the brilHance of a star to give to some the glory of the glory of the moon, and to others the the sun, and to others
inconsistent with the justice of assign to
; ;

glory of the stars glory

to

make one

star differ

from another

star in

In the second place, they object to us about terrestrial

beings that a happier lot of birth has come to some


others
;

men

than ta

one man, for example,


;

is
is

begotten by

Abraham and born

according to promise

another

the son of Isaac and Eebekah,

womb, is said even before he is born to be beloved of God. One man is born among the Hebrews, among whom he finds the learning of the divine law ; another among the Greeks, themselves also wise and men of no
and, supplanting his brother even in the

small learning

another

among the

Ethiopians,

who

are canni-

234
bals
;

VIII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

another among the Scythians, with

whom parricide is legal;

another
"

among the Taurians, who offer their guests in sacrifice. They consequently argue thus If this great diversity of
:

circumstances, this varied and different condition of birth

matter in which free-will has no place

is

not caused by a

diversity in the nature of the souls themselves, a soul of an evil

nature being destined for an evil nation, and a soul of a good


nature for a good one, what other conclusion can be drawn than
that all this
is

the result of chance and accident


it

And

if

that

no longer be credible either that the world was made by God or that it is governed by His proconclusion be admitted,
will

vidence and consequently neither will the judgment of God upon every man's doings seem a thing to be looked for."^
:

It is to this phase of the controversy that the ethical

theology of Origen

is relative.

In that theology, Stoicism

and IS"eo-Platonism are blended into a complete theodicy


nor has a more logical superstructure ever been reared

on the basis
whole, and

of philosophical theism.

It is necessary to
it is
^
:

show the coherence

of his

view as a

advisable, in doing so, to use chiefly his

own words
"

There was but one beginning of

all things, as

there will be

but a single end. The diversities of existence which have sprung

from a single beginning

M'ill

be absorbed in a single end.^

The

causes of those diversities

lie

in the diverse things themselves.*


;

They were created absolutely equal had no reason in Himself for causing
being an advantage which
^

for,

inequalities

on the one hand, God ;^ and, on the


could not give to one

other hand, being absolutely impartial,

He

He

did not give to another.^

They

Origeu, de princ.

2. 9. 5.

follows is, with the exception of one extract from the contra Celsum, a catera of extracts from tho de 'princi^iis,
-

Tho passage which


Deprinc.
2. 9. 6.

1.

6. 2.

M.

8.

2;

2. 9. 7.

1. 8. 4.

VIII.

GREEK AND CHEISTIAN THEOLOGY.

235

were

also,

by a
;

similar necessity, created with the capacity of

being diverse

for spotless purity is of the essence of

none save

it must be accidental, and conseThe lapse, when it takes place, is voluntary for every being endowed with reason has the power of exercising it, and this power is free ^ it is excited by external causes, but not coerced by them.^ For to lay the fault on external causes and put it away from ourselves by declaring that we are like logs or stones, dragged by forces that act upon them from Every created rational without, is neither true nor reasonable. being is thus capable of both good and evil consequently of praise and blame consequently also of happiness and misery of the former if it chooses holiness and clings to it, of the latter if by sloth and negligence it swerves into wickedness and ruin.*

God

in all created beings

quently liable to lapse.^


;

The
will,

lapse,

when

it

has taken place,

is

not only voluntary but


free-

also various in degree.

Some

beings,

though possessed of

never lapsed
slightly,

they form the order of angels.

Some

lapsed

but
'

and form in their varying degrees the orders of

thrones, dominations, princedoms, virtues, powers.'

lower, but not irrecoverably, and form the race of men.^

Some lapsed Some


In the

lapsed to such a depth of unworthiness and wickedness as to be

opposing powers

they are the devil and his angels.^


is

temporal world which

seen, as well as in the eternal worlds

which are unseen,


merits
;

all

beings are arranged according to their

been determined by their own conduct.'^ "The present inequalities of circumstance and character are
their place has
life.

thus not wholly explicable within the sphere of the present

But

this

world

is

not the only world.


;

from the beginning


already,

it

Every soul has existed has therefore passed through some worlds

and will pass through others before it reaches the final consummation. It comes into this world strengthened by the Its victories or weakened by the defeats of its previous life. dishonour or to place in this world as a vessel appointed to
honour
is
1

determiiaed
1. 5.

by

its

previous merits or demerits.


2

Its

5;

1. 6. 2.

3. 1. 4.

3 3. 1. 5.

1, 5. 2, 5.

6 1. 6. 2.

1. 6. 3.

7 3. 3,

3. 5. 3.

236
work

VIII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN TffEOLOGY.


its

in this world determines


this.^

place in the world which

is to

follow

" All this takes place

with the knowledge and under the over-

sight of God.

It is

an indication of His ineffable wisdom that

the diversities of natures for


selves responsible are
world.^
It is

which created beings are themwrought together into the harmony of the
is

an indication not only of His wisdom but of His


coerced into acting rightly,
it

goodness that, while no creature


yet

when

it

lapses

meets with evils and punishments.

All

punishments are remedial. God calls what are termed evils into existence to convert and purify those whom reason and admonition fail to change.

He

is

thus the great Physician of souls.^


it

The process
suffering,

of cure, acting as

does simply through free-will,

takes in some cases an almost illimitable time.

For God

is

long-

some souls, as to some bodies, a rapid cure is But in the end all souls will be thoroughly not beneficial. purged.* All that any reasonable soul, cleansed of the dregs of all vices, and with every cloud of wickedness completely wiped away, can either feel or understand or think, will be wholly God:
and
to

will no longer either see or contain anything else but God God will be the mode and measure of its every movement and Nor will there be any longer any distincso God will be all.'
it
:

'

tion between good and

evil,

because evil will nowhere exist

for

God

is

all things,

and in

Him

no evil inheres.

So, then,

when
it

the end has been brought back to the beginning, that state of things will be restored which the rational creation had

when
;

knowledge and He all sense of wickedness will have been taken away evil who alone is the one good God becomes to the soul all,' and There will be no longer that not in some souls but 'in all.'

had no need
;

to eat of the tree of the

of good

'

3.

1.

20, 21

to a lower grade, that they

but sometimes beings of higher merit are assigned may benelit those who properly belong to

that grade, and that they themselves


of the Creator, 2. 9. 7.
2 1. 2. 1.
1,

may
G,

be partakers of the patience

e.

Cds.

56; de princ.

2.

10.

* Dej^rinc. 3.

11, 17.

VIII.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.


any
evil

237

death, uor the sting of death, nor

anywhere, but God

wmbe'alliuaU.'"^

Of

this great theodicy, only part has

been generally
it,

accepted.

The Greek conceptions which underlie


it,

and which preceded


forms.

have survived, but in other

Free-will, final causes, probation,

have had a
share.
it

later history in

which Greece has had no

The
has

doctrine of free-will has remained in name, but

been so mingled on the one hand with theories of human


depravity, and on the other with theories of divine grace,
that the original current of thought
into
is lost

in the marshes

which

it

has descended.

The

doctrine of final causes

has been pressed to an almost excessive degree as proving


the existence and the providence of God
;

but His govern-

ment

of the

human

race has been often viewed rather as

the blundering towards an ultimate failure than as a

complete vindication of His purpose of creation.

The

Christian world has acquiesced in the conception of life


as a probation
;

but while some of

its

sections

have con|

ceived of this

life

as the only probation,


life to

and others have

admitted a probation in a
into the recognized

come, none have admitted

'

body of

their teaching Origen's sub-

lime conception of an infinite stairway of worlds, with


its

perpetual ascent and descent of souls, ending at last

in the union of all souls with


1

God.

3. 6. 3.

Lecture IX.

GEEEK AND CHEISTIAN THEOLOGY.


III.

God as the SuPREiiE Being.

It was in the Gentile rather than in the


that the theology of Christianity
built

Jemsh world
It

was shaped.

was
of

upon a Jewish

basis.

The Jewish communities


for

the great cities and along the commercial routes of the

empire had paved the

way

Christianity

by

their
its_

active propaganda of monotheism.

Christianity

won

way_among the eclu^ted^ckssesjbyjvii'tue


intellectual conceptions.

of its satisfy-

ing^ not^nly_their moral idealsj_but also theii' highest

On

its ethical side it

had, as

we have

seen, large elements in


its

Stoicism; on

theological side

common with reformed it moved in harmony

with the new movements of Platonism.^

And

those

movements reacted upon


elements of
in

it.

They gave
faith,

a philosophical
to those

form to the simpler Jewish


it

and especially
of St.

which the teaching

Paul had
earlier

already given a foothold for speculation.


conceptions remained
;

The

but blending readily with the

philosophical conceptions that were akin to them, they

were expanded into large theories in which metaphysics


*

Cf. Justin, Dial.

c.

7'ri/ph. 2.

IX.

GEEEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.


had an ample
field.

239

and

dialectics

example, of

The conception, for the one God whose kingdom was a universal
all ages,

kingdom and endured throughout


and passed
into, the philosophical

blended with,

conception of a Being

who was beyond time and

The conception that " clouds and darkness were round about Him," blended
space.

with, and passed into, the philosophical conception of a

Being who was beyond not only human sight but human
thought.

The conception

of
it

His transcendence obtained


confirmed the prior concepof

the stronger hold because


tion of

His unity

and that

His incommunicability,
gave a philo-

and of the consequent need


His Son.

of a mediator,

sophical explanation of the truth that Jesus Christ

was

A. The Idea and

its

Development in Greek Philosophy.


to

But the
prevail,

theories

which in the fourth century came


were the result
of at least

and which have formed the main part

of specu-

lative theology ever since,

two

centuries of conflict.

At every

stage of the conflict the

conceptions of one or other of the forms of Greek philo-

sophy played a decisive part


of the conflict find a

and the changing phases

remarkable parallel in some of tho

philosophical schools.

The
stages,

conflict

may be

said to have

had three leading


God, (2)

which are marked respectively by the dominance


Himself, (3) the distinctions in His

of speculations as to (1) the transcendence of

His revelation
nature.

of

(1) The Transcendence of God.

l^Tearly

seven hun-

240

IX.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.


the

dred years before

time

when

Christianity

first

came

into
of a

large

contact with

Greek philosophy, the

mind
of

ences of

Greek thinker, outstripping the slow inferpopular thought, had leapt to the conception

God

as the Absolute Unity.

He was

the ultimate

generalization of all things, expressed as the ultimate

abstraction of

or
is

He was by bodily form: "all of Him understanding, all of Him is


number:^

not limited by parts


is

sight,

all

of

Him
it

hearing."

But

is

probable that the conception in

its first
:^

form was rather

of a material than of an ideal unity

the basis of later


of

metaphysics was

first

securely laid

by a second form
first

the conception which succeeded the


afterwards.

half-a-century

The conception was


really
is :
it

that of Absolute Eeing.


will be
:

Only the One


now, and
is

was not nor


space,

it is

everywhere

entire,

a continuous unity, a

perfect s^Dhere
able.

which

fills all

undying and immov-

Over against
:

it

are the

objects of sense

they are not,


to

Many, the innumerable but only seem to be the


:

Imowledge that we seem


but
illusion.

have

of

them

is

not truth,

form,

But the conception, even in this second was more consistent with Pantheism than with
It

Theism.

was

lifted to the

higher plane on which

it

has ever since rested by the Platonic distinction between


the world of sense and the world of thought.

God

be-

longed to the latter, and not to the former.


^

Absolute

The more common conception


2.

of the earliest
t]

Greek philosophy
crco/iacri

was that of ra?

ei'SujKovcras Tois (rToi;!^iots

tois

Suvct/xeis,

Aetius ap. Stob. Eel. PInjs.


2

29.

The form

in whicli

it is

given by Sextus Empiricu?, in whose time


:

the distinction was clearly understood, implies this


Koi rhv Oiov
o-1'/a</)i
y

iv

that to nat

Tracrt,

Pt/n-h. Ilypotijp. 225.

IX.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.


all

241

Unity, Absolute Being, and

the other terms which

expressed His unique supremacy, were gathered up in


the conception of

Mind

for

mind

in the highest j)hase


:

of its existence is self-contemplative

the modes of
:

its
it

expression are numerous, and perhaps infinite

but

can

itself

go behind

its

modes, and so

retire, as it

were,

a step farther back from the material objects about which


its

modes employ themselves.


{eiriKeiva
''

In

this

sense

God

is

transcendent

rtj?

ova-la?^^

beyond the world


is

of

sense and matter.


rate

God

therefore
is to say,

Mind, a form

sejDait,

from

all

matter, that

out of contact with


is

and not involved with anything that


acted on."^

capable of being

This great conception of the transcendence of


filled

God

a large place in later Greek philosojDhy, even out-

side the Platonic schools.^

The

history of

it is

beyond

our present purpose

but we shall better understand the

relation of Christian theology to current thought

take three expressions of the conception at


that theology

we the time when


if

was being formed and in Plotinus.

in

Plutarch, in Maxi-

mus
^

of Tyre,
is

This

a post-Platonic

summary of

Plato's conception

into the
it

inner development,
Plato's

and consequently varying expressions, of


it

in

own

writings

is

not necessary to enter here.

It is

more

important in relation to the history of later Greek thought to

know

what he was supposed to mean than Avhat lie meant. The above is taken from the summary of Aetius in Plut. de plac. pliilos. 1. 7, Euseb. The briefest Pnejj. evang. 14. 16 (Diels, Doxografphi Grceci, p. 304). and most expressive statement of the transcendence of God (to dyadov)
in Plato's

own

writings

is

probably Republic,

p.

509, ovk ovcrias ovros


dvvdjJi.ei.

Tou dyaOov,

dW cVi

eVeKetva tt}? ova-Las 7rpeo-yQ;t^ Kal

vrep-

It

was a struggle between

this

and Stoicism.

242

IX.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

Plutarch says
"

What, then,
is

is

that which really exists

It is the Eternal,

the Uncreated, the Undying, to

whom

time brings no change,


:

Tor time

always flowing and never stays


it

it is

a vessel charged a 'will be' and


'is.'

with birth and death:


a 'has been:'
it

has a before and


'is

after,

belongs to the

not' rather than to the

and that not in time but in eternity, motionless, timeless, changeless eternity, tbit has no before or after and being One, He fills eternity with one aSTow, and so really is/ not 'has been,' or 'will be,' without beginning and without
is
: :

But God

'

ceasing."^

Maxinius
"

of

Tyre says
all

God, the Father and Fashioner of


is

things that are,

He

who

older than the sun, older than the sky, greater than time

and lapse of time and the whole stream of nature, is unnamed by legislators, and unspoken by the voice and unseen by the eyes and since we cannot apprehend His essence, we lean upon words and names and animals, and forms of gold and ivory and silver, and plants and rivers and mountain-peaks and springs of waters, longing for an intuition of Him, and in our inability naming by His name all things that are beautiful in this world
:

of ours."-

And
" It
tells

again
Father and Begetter of the universe that Plato
tell us, for

is of this
:

us

His name he does not


tell

he knew
not
felt
;

it

not

nor

does he
lie

us His colour, for he saw

Him

nor His

size, for

touched

Him

not.

Colour and size are

by the touch and

^ Ph;tavch, de Ei ap. Delph. 18; cf. Ocelkis Lucanus in the Augustan Age, ap. Diels, 187, Mullach, i. p. 383 sq. The universe has no beginning and no end it always was and always Avill be (1. 1. p. 388). It
:

comprises, however, to irotovv and to Traa-xov, the former above the

moon, the

latter below, so that the course of the

moon marks
400).?

the limit

between the changing and changeless, the

aet Okovros

Odov and the

a^
-

/xT/3dA/\ovTos y^vt-jTov (2.

1, p.

394,

2. 23, p.

Max. Tyr.

Diss. 8. 9.

IX.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.


:

243

seen by the sight unspoken by the

but the Deity Himself

voice,

the hearing, seen only

is unseen by the sight, untouched by fleshly touch, unheard by through its likeness to Him, and heard

only

through

its

kinship with Him, by the noblest and purest


soul."^

and clearest-sighted and swiftest and oldest element of the


Plotinus similarly, in answer to the old problem,

"how

from the One, being such as we have described Him?


anything whatever has substance, instead of the One abiding by Himself," replies
"

Let us

call

upon God Himself before we thus answer


bu.t

not

with uttered words,

stretching forth our souls in prayer to

Him,
wdio

for this is the

only

way

in

is

alone.

We must,

then, gaze

which we can pray, alone to Him upon Him in the inner part

of us, as in a temple, being as He is by Himself, abiding still and beyond all things (cTre/ceti/a airavTuv). Everything that moves must have an object towards which it moves. But the One has no such object consequently we must not assert movement of Him. .... Let us not think of production in time, when we speak of things eternal. What then was produced was produced without His moving .... it had its being without His assenting or willing or being moved in anywise. It was like the light that surrounds the sun and shines forth from it, though the sun is itself at rest it is reflected like an image. So with what That which is next greatest comes forth from Him, is greatest. and the next greatest is vovs for vous sees Him and needs Him
;
. .

alone." ^
1

Max. Tyr.

17. 9.
5. 1.

^ Plotinus,

Enneades,
7)

cf.

1. 8,

where vovs

is

a/>iepccrTos,

distinguished from

irepl

ra crwyxara

iMepccrrr) (oucrta).

We are between

the two, having a share of both.


Ojaotwcrts Trpos deov, 1. 2.

The

KaOapcris of the soul consists in

the love of beauty should ascend from that

of the body to that of character and laws, of arts and sciences, utto Se

TMV dpeTwv
TTopecav, 1.

t^Stj

dva/3aiveiv

7rt

vovv,

eirl

to

ov,

kukci /3a8i(TTeov rrjv avo

2.

r2

244
13 lit

IX.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.


transcendence
that of a
is

the conception of
It

capable

of

taking two forms.

may be

God who

passes
are

beyond

all

the classes into which sensible


of

phenomena

divisible,

by virtue
;

His being pure Mind, cognizable


that of a

only by mind

or

it

may be

God who

exists

extra flammantia moenia mundi, filling the infinite space-

/-nvhich surrounds and contains all the spheres of material


existence.

The one God


;

is

transcendent in the proper


is

sense of the term


case
I

the other

supra-cosmic.

In either
;

He is
of

said to be unborn, undying, uncontained

and

since the

same terms are thus used

to express the eleit is

ments
I

both forms of the conception,

natural that

these forms should readily pass into each other,


that the distinction between

and

them should not always be


a

present to a writer's

mind

or perceptible in his writings.


fills

But the conception


large place in later

in one or other of its forms

Greek philosophy.

It

blended in a

common
ing.

stream with the


is

new

currents of religious feel-

[The process
" I

well illustrated

by

Philo.]

The words
is full

am

thy

God"

are used not in a proper but in a

secondary sense.
of itself

For Being,

q_iia

Being,

is

out of relation

itself

and

sufficient for itself,


it.^

both before the birth of


transcends
all quality,

the world and equally so after

He

being better than virtue, better than knowledge, and better even

than the good

itself
;

and the beautiful

itself.^

He

is

not in space,

but beyond
is

it

for

He

contains

it.

He

is

not in time, for

He

the Father of the universe, which


its

is itself tiie

father of time,

since from

movement time
*
;

proceeds.^
i.

He

is

"without body,

De mut. nom. 4 De mund. op. 2 Be post. Cain, 5;


;

582, ed. Maugey.


2.

i.

228, 229.

IX.
{parts or

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.


:

245

passions"
all

without
:

feet,

for

whither should

who

fills

things

without hands, for from


possesses all thing?
:

whom

should

He walk He

receive anything

who

Nvithout eyes, for hov/

should

He

need eyes

how

can eyes that


to gaze

who made are too weak


its

the light.^
to gaze

He

is invisible, for

upon the sun be strong


incomprehensible
:

enough

upon

Maker.^

He

is

not

much less the human mind, can contain the conception of Him :^ we know that He is, we cannot know what He is:* we may see the manifestations of Him in His
even the whole universe,
works, but
it

were monstrous

folly to go
is

inquire into His essence.^

He

behind His works and hence unnamed: for names


is

are the symbols of created things, whereas His only attribute


vto he.^

(2) The Revelation of the Transcendent.

Side by

side

with this conception of the transcendence of God,

and

intimately connected with


forces

it,

was the idea

of beings or

coming between God and men.


in Himself incommunicable
:

transcendent

God was

the more the con-

ception of His transcendence

was developed, the stronger

was the necessity


mediate linksJ
^

for conceiving of the existence of inter-

Quod deus immut. 12;


i.

i.

281.

'

De Ahrah. 16;
ii.

ii.

12.

224, 281, 566;

ii.

12,
ii.

654; Frag, ap Joan. Dam.


415.
cf.
^

654.
i.

*
6

De

proim.

et poen.

7;
i.

De post.

Cain, 48;
ii.

258.

Damtd. nom. 2;

580;

630, 648, 655;

8-9, 19, 92-93,


griechiacheji

597.

Cf. in general Heinze,

Die Lchre vom Logos in der


6.
is

PhUosophie, Oldenburg, 1872, pp. 206, 207, n.


^

The necessity

for

such intermediate links

not affected by the

question
'real

how
In

far,

outside the Platonic schools, there was a belief in a

transcendence of God, or only in His existence outside the solar


this connection, note the allegory in the Phaidrus.

system.

The

Epicureans coarsely expressed the transcendence of


sion, ^i-QprjTai.
rj

God by

the express-

oucria,
p.

Sext.

Emp. Pyrrh.

Lucanus, cited above,

242.

p. 114, 5; cf. Ocellus Hippolytus describes Aristotle's Meta7. 19, p.

physics as dealing with things beyond the moon,

354;

cf.

246
i.

IX.

GREEK AND CHRISIIAN THEOLOGY.

basis for such a conception

was afforded in the


daemons

popular mythology by the

belief in

spirits

inferior to the gods, but superior to

men.

The

belief

was probably "a survival

of the primitive

psychism

which peopled the whole universe with life and animaThere was an enormous contemporary develoption."^

ment

They are found in Epictetus, Dio Chrysostom, Maximus, and Celsns. In the latter some are good, some bad, most of them of mixed nature to them is due the creation of all things
of the idea of

dsemons or genii.

except the

human

soul

they are the rulers of day and


cold.^

night, of the sunlight


ii.

and the

philosophical basis for the theory


or Forms,

was afforded
Stoical Locfoi

by the Platonic Ideai


or Eeasons.

and the

We have

already seen the place which those

Forms, viewed also as Forces, and those Eeasons, viewed


also as productive Seeds, filled in the later

Greek cosmoimportant

logies

and cosmogonies.

They were not

less

in relation to the theory of the transcendence of God.

The Forms according to which He shaped the world, the Forces by which He made and sustains it, the Eeasons which inhere in it and, like laws, control its movements,
Origen's idea of the lieavens in de ^^rinc. that Christians misunderstand Plato
ii. 3, 7, and Celsus' objection by confusing his heaven with the

Jewish heavens.
^

Origen,

c.

Cels. vi.
2.

19;

of.

Iveim, p, 84.

Benn, Greeh Philosophers,

252.
Similarly, Thales, tu
ttu-v efixj/vxov

2 Cf.

Hesiod in Sext. Emp.

ix. 86.

a/ia Kul 8ai[i.6vo}v TrXrjpes

(Diels, 301);

Pythagoras, Empedocles in
;

Hippolytus, StotKoGvTcs

rot

Kara
Philo,

Tr]v

y^v (Diels, 558)


1. 14.

Plato and the


3. 13.

Stoics (Diels, 307), e.g. Plutarch, Epictetus,

12;

15 (Diels,

1307)
8.

Athenagoras, 23 ; 13; see references in Keim's


;

ii.

635

Frag. ap. Eus. Prcej). Evan.

Oclsus, p.
u.

jLnsichten der Stoiker iiher

Mantik

120; cf. Wachsmuth, Die Ddmoncn, Berlin, 1860.

IX.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.


of

247

are outflows from and reflexions

His nature, and

communicate a knowledge
tures.

of it to

His intelligent crea-

In the philosophy of Philo, these philosophical


of Angels.

conceptions are combined with both the Greek conception


of

Daemons and the Hebrew conception

The

four conceptions, Forms, Logoi^ DoBmons,

and Angels,

pass into
relative to

one another, and the expressions which are

them

are interchangeable.
is

expression for

them

Logoi,

and

it

The most common is more commonly

found in the singular. Logos.


(3) The Distinctions in the Nature of God.
is

The Logos
it is itself

able to reveal the nature of

God

because

the reflexion of that nature.

It is able to reveal that

nature to intelligent creatures because the

gence

is itself

an offshoot

of the Divine.

human intelliAs the eye of


is

sense sees the sensible world, which also


of God,^ since
it is

a revelation

His thought impressed upon matter,


intelligible realities, existing

so the reason sees the intelligible world, the world of

His thoughts conceived as


separate from

Him.
to

apprehend God, and travelHng first of all meets with the divine Eeasons, and with them abides as a guest hut when he resolves to pursue the further journey, he is compelled to abstain, for the eyes of his understanding being opened, he sees
along the path of wisdom and knowledge,
;

"The wise man, longing

that the object of his quest


infinite distance in

is

afar off
him.'"-^

and always receding, an

advance of

into the antechamber of the Divine Eeason, and

"Wisdom leads him first when he is there


;

he does not

at once enter into the

Divine Presence
off

but sees

Him

afar

off,

or rather not
^

even afar

can he behold Him, but


(i.

Philo, de con/us. ling. 20

419).

De

post Cain. 6

(i.

229).

248

IX.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.


is still

only he sees that the place where he stands

infinitely far

from the unnamed, unspeakable, and incomprehensible God."^

What

he sees

is

not

Him, "just as those yet gaze upon a reflexion

God Himself but the likeness of who cannot gaze upon the sun may
of it."
^

The

Logos^ reflecting

not only the Divine nature, but also the Divine will and
the Divine goodness, becomes to

men
it

a messenger of

help

like

the angel to Hagar,

brings advice and

encouragement;^ like the angel who redeemed Jacob


(Gen.
xlviii. 16), it

rescues

men from

all

kinds of evil;*
it

like the angel

who

delivered Lot from Sodom,

succours

the kinsmen of virtue and provides for


"

them
what

a refuge.^
to

Like a king,
a teacher,
;

it
it

announces by decree what


instructs its disciples in
it

men ought

do

like

will benefit

them
best

like a counsellor,

suggests the wisest plans, and so


of themselves
secrets

greatly benefits those


;

who do not

know what

is

like a friend,

it tells

many

which

it is

not lawful

for the uninitiated to hear."''

And

standing

midway between God and man,


to

it

not only

reflects

God downwards
to

man, but

also reflects

man

upwards
" It

God.

stands on the border-line between the Creator and the

creation, not unbegotten like

and

so

God, not begotten like ourselves, becomes not only an ambassador from the Euler to His

subjects, but also a suppliant

from mortal

man

yearning after

the immortal."^

The
from
1

relation of the Logos to God, as distinguished

its

functions, is expressed
somn.
1.

by
2

several metaphors, all


1,
(i.

De

11
1 3.
(i.
(i.

(i.

630).

m^i

41 ^i 655)^
139).
(i.

8
*

Deprofug.
Leg. Alleg.

547);
(i.

so de Chcruh. 1
^ 7

G2

122).

/^^ gomn. 1. 15

633).

Ihid. 1.

33

Gi9).

Q^iis ^er. div. her.

42

(i.

501).

IX.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

249

of which are important in view of later theology.

They

may

be gathered into

two

classes,

corresponding to the

two great conceptions

of the relation of the universe to

God which were


nists.

held respectively by the two great

sources of Philo's philosophy, the Stoics and the Plato-

The one

class of

metaphors belongs

to the monistic,

the other to the dualistic, conception of the universe.

In the former, the Logos


other,

is

evolved from

God

in the

created

by Him.^
projected

The

chief metaphors of the


:

former class are those of a phantom, or image, or outflow


the Logos
is

by God

as a man's as

shadow
off

or his

phantom was sometimes conceived


body,^ expressing
separate existence
reflexion cast
its

thrown

by
it

every feature, and abiding as a

after the

body was dead;

is

by God upon the space which He


is cast

contains,

as a parhelion

by

the sun;^

it is

an outflow as
class

from a spring.*
^

The

chief

metaphor of the second


175), 6

De

sacrif. Abel, et Cain.

18

(i.

yap ^eos Aeywi/

a/ia ejrotei

[j.rj8iv

fiiTa^v djx^oiv
:

Tibet's' et Se y^pi^
(ii.

Soy/xa Ktvetv dX-qOicrrepov, 6 Xoyos

epyov avTov
of the

de decern orac. 11
in

188),

LXX.

Exodus xx.

18, 6 Aaos ewpa rrjv

commenting on the expression c^covr^v, he justifies it

on the ground
6<f>daX[xol irpo
eiTTOL
2

oVt ocra dv Xeyrj 6 ^eos ov py]fiaTd ecrrtv

dW

'^pya, direp

wTwv

Scopt^ovcrt

de mund. opif. 6
Oeov Aoyoi'
rjSrj

(i.

5), ouSev dv erepov

Tov voi]Tov iTvai k6(tixov

rj

koct/xottoioiji/tos.

The word

o-Kia

seems to be used, in relation to the Logos, not of

the shadow cast by a solid object in the sunlight, but rather, as in

Homer, Odyss. 10. 495, and frequently in classical writers, of a ghost or phantom hence God is the TrapaSety/xa, the substance of which the
:

Logjs

is

the unsubstantial form, Leg. Alleg.

3.

31

(i.

106)

hence also

cTKvi is

used as convertible with

etV-wv [ibid.), in its


:

sense of either a
(i.

portrait-statue or a reflexion in a mirror

in de confus. ling. 28

427),

the Logos
3

is

the eternal etKwv of God.


1.

De

somn.

41

(i.

656).

Quod

det. pot. ins.

23

(i.

207),

250
is

IX.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.


;

that of a son

the Logos

is

the first-begotten of

God ;^

and by an elaboration
in later theology,

of the
is

metaphor which reappears


hence tends some-

God

in one passage spoken of as its


It

Father,

Wisdom

as its Mother.^

times to be viewed as separate from God, neither

God

nor man, but " inferior to

God though

greater than man." ^

The

earlier conception
:

had already passed through several


itself

forms

it

had begun with that which was

the

greatest leap that

any one thinker had yet made, the


:

conception that Eeason


of

Eeason led
:

Eeason

out of

made the world the conception to the conception of God as Personal that grew the thought of God as greater
it

than Eeason and using

as

His instrument

and

at last

had come the conception of the Eeason of God as in some way detached from Him, working in the world as a subordinate but self-acting law.
It

was natural that

this

should lead to the further conception of Eeason as the


offspring of

God and Wisdom,

the metaphor of a

human

birth being transferred to the highest sphere of heaven.

B.

The Idea and

its

Development in Christian

Theology.
(1) The Transcendence of God.

All
28
(i.

the conceptions

which we have seen to exist in the sphere of philosophy

were reproduced in the sphere of Christianity.


1

They

De

agric.

12

(i.
(i.

308): de con/us.
414),

ling.

427)

spoken of as

yvvi]Bi.i<i, ibid.

14

De

profug. 20

(i.

5G2)
(i.

so

God

is

spoken of as the husband of


in de ebriet. 8
(i.

cro<^ta in

dc Cherub. 14

148).

But

361),

God

is

the Father,
universe.
8

Knowledge the
mit. somn.

]\Iother,

not of the Logos but of the

Quod a Deo

i.

683.

IX.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

251

are sometimes relative to God, in contrast to the world

phenomena phenomena come into being, God is unbegotten and without beginning: phenomena are visible and tangible, God is unseen and untouched.
of sensible
:

They

are sometimes relative to the idea of perfection

God is unchangeable, indivisible, unending. He has no name for a name implies the existence of something prior to that to which a name is given, whereas He is
:

prior to all things.

These conceptions are

all

negative

the positive conceptions are that


((3v6o?)

He

is

the infinite depth


that

which contains and embosoms


and that

all things,

He

is self-existent,

He

is light.

"The
is

Father of

all," said

one school of philosophers,^ "

a primal light,

blessed, incorruptible,

and

infinite."

'-The essence of
is

the unbegotten Father of the universe

incorruptibility

and self-existing

light, simple

and uniform."^

From
near to

the earliest Christian teaching, indeed, the con-

ception of the transcendence of

God
:

is

absent.

God

is

men and

speaks to them
:

He

is

angry with them

and punishes them


them.

He

is

merciful to

them and pardons

He

does

all this

through His angels and prophets,

and last of all through His Son.


than because

But he needs such


is invisible,

mediators rather because a heavenly Being

He

is

transcendent.

The conception which

underlies the earliest expression of the belief of a Christian

community

is

the simple conception of children

"We
and

give Thee thanks,

Holy

Father, for

Thy holy name which

Thou hast caused


faith

for the knowledge and immortality which Thou hast made known to us through Jesus Christ, Thy servant. To Thee be glory for ever.
to dwell in our hearts,

and

1-

i.e.

Sethiani ap. Iren.

1.

30.

1.

* Ptolemseus, ad Flor.

7.

252

IX.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.


j\Iaster,

Thou, Almighty

hast created all things for

Thy name's

and drink to men for their enjoyment, that they may give thanks to Thee and upon us hast Thou bestowed spiritual food and drink and eternal life through Thy servant. Before all things we give Thee thanks for that Thou art mighty to Thee be glory for ever."^
sake, hast given food
:

In the original sphere of Christianity there does not


appear to have been any great advance upon these simple
conceptions.

The doctrine upon which


is,

stress

was

laid

wasj that

God

that

and
is

everlasting, that
all

He is one, that He is almighty He made the world, that His mercy


There was no taste for metathere was possibly no appreciation
It is quite possible that

over

His works.^
:

physical discussion

of metaphysical conceptions.

some Christians

laid themselves

open to the accusation

which Celsus brings,


Stoicism,

of believing that

God

is

only cog-

nizable through the senses.^

They were influenced by


intellectual existences,

which denied

all

and

regarded

spirit itself as material.^

This tendency resulted

in Adoptian Christology.^

But most

of the philosophical conceptions

above de-

scribed were adopted

by the Apologists, and through


are for the most part stated,

such adoption found acceptance in the associated Christian communities.

They

not as in a dogmatic system, but incidentally.

For
inter-

example, Justin thus protests against a


1

literal

Teachin<i of iha Twelve Apostles, 10.


Cf. the Ebionites, Alogi,

24.
1. 1. 7.

and the Clementines.


de princ.

3
^

Origen,

c.

Ccls. 7.
7.

36;

cf.

Cvn. Cels.

37,
;

Kai hoyjiaTi^uv
cf.

TrapaTrXrjo-ms

TOis

dvaipovcri
ii.

V07JTUS oi'o-ias ~T(x)iKois


p.

Keiiu,

p.

100.

Sec also

Oi'ig. in

Gen. vol.

25 (Dehirue), and Eus.


^

//.

E.

iv.

26, for a view ascribed to Melito.

TTarnack, Dogmengcscli p. 160.

IX.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

253
Old

pretation of the anthropomorpliic expressions of the

Testament

"You
Lord of
nor

are not to think that the unbegotten


'

God 'came down'

from anywhere or went


all

up.'

For the unutterable Father and


place wherever that place
ears,

things neither comes to any place nor walks nor sleeps

rises,

but abides in His

own

may
but

be, seeing

keenly and hearing keenly, not with eyes or

with His unspeakable power, so that

He

sees all things


:

and

knows

He

move,

world,

nor is any one of us hid from Him nor does He who is uncontained by space and by the whole seeing that He was before the world was born."^
all things,

And
"I

Athenagoras thus sums up his defence of Chris-

tianity against the charge of atheism

have

sufficiently

demonstrated that they are not atheists


is

who
sible,

believe in

One who

unbegotten, eternal, unseen, impas:

comprehended by mind and reason only, invested with ineffable light and beauty and spirit and power, by whom the universe is brought into being and set in order and held firm, through the agency of his own
incomprehensible and uncontained
Logos."
'^

Theophilus replies thus to his heathen interlocutor asked him to describe the form of the Christian
" Listen,

who

God
His glory

my

friend

the form of

God

is

unutterable and in:

describable, nor can


is

it

be seen with fleshly eyes


is

for

uncontained. His size

incomprehensible, His loftiness is


is

inconceivable. His strength

is unHis beneficence rivalled. His goodness beyond imitation. beyond description. If I speak of Him as light, I mention His handiwork if I speak of Him as reason, I mention His government
:

incomparable, His wisdom

if I

mention His breath if I speak of mention His offspring if I speak of Him as strength, I mention His might if I speak of Him as providence,
speak of
as spirit, I
:

Him

Him

as wisdom, I

Dial.

c.

Tnjph.

c.

127.

Legatio, 10.

254

IX.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.


:

I mention His goodness His glory." ^

if I

speak of His kingdom, I mention

It is not easy to determine in regard to

many

of these

expressions whether they are relative in the writer's

mind

to a supra-cosmic or to a transcendental conception of

God.

The

case of Tertullian clearly shows that they are

compatible with the former conception no less than with


the latter; for though he speaks of

God

as

"the great

Supreme, existing in eternity, unborn, unmade, without


beginning, and without end,"'^ yet he argues that
material; for

He

is

"how
full,

could one

things that are solid, and one things that are

who is empty have made who is void have made and one who is incorporeal have
But there were some

made

things that have body?"^

schools of

philosophers in which the transcendental cha-

racter of the conception is clearly apparent.


of such schools,
lides.

The

earliest

and the most remarkable,

is

that of Basito form, the

It anticipated,

and perhaps helped

later developments of Neo-Platonism.

It conceived of

God

as transcending being. I^ot

He was

absolutely beyond

all predioation.

even negative predicates are predi-

Him. The language of the school becomes paradoxical and almost unmeaning in the extremity of its
cable of
effort to express the transcendence of

God, and at the

same time

to reconcile the belief in

His transcendence

with " When there was nothing, neither material, nor essenthe belief that
is
tial,
1

He

the Creator of the world.

nor non-essential, nor simple, nor compound, nor


1.3;
cf. ISIinuc.

Ad Autohjcum.
2.

Felix, Odavius, 18,

and Novatian,

ie Trln. 1.
2

Adv, Marc.

1. 3.

Adv. Prax.

7.

IX.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

255

unthoughfc, nor unperceived, nor man, nor angel, nor god,

nor absolutely anj^ of the things that are named or perceived or thought, ....

God who was not

(ovk

cov 0eo?),

without thought, without perception, Y/ithout

will,

with-

out purpose, without passion, without desire, willed to

make a

world.

In saying 'willed,' I use the word only


is

because some word

necessary,

but I mean without

volition, without thought, and without perception; and

in saying
sible

'

world,' I do not

mean

the extended and diviits

world which afterwards came into being, with


^

capacity of division, but the seed of the world."

This

was
ing,

said

more

briefly,
:

but probably with the same meanis

by Marcus

There

no conception and no essence

of God.2

These exalted ideas

of

His transcendence, which had


soil,

especially thriven on Alexandrian

were further

ela-

borated at the end of the second century by the Christian


philosophers of the Alexandrian schools,

who

inherited

the wealth at once of regenerated Platonism, of Gnosticism,

and

of theosophic

Judaism.

Clement anticipated

Plotinus in conceiving of

One and higher than


name

the

God Monad

as being
itself,"^

"beyond the
which was the
There
''
:

highest abstraction of current philosophy.^


that can properly be

is

no

named

of

Him

neither the

One, nor the Good, nor Mind, nor Absolute Being, nor
Father, nor Creator, nor Lord."
1

'No science can attain

ap. Hippol. 7. 21, p. 358.

"

for
3

avevvorjTOs Kal dvovcrios, ibid. 6. 42, p. 302; cf. 12 Monoimus, and aho Ptolemaeus, ad Floram, 7.

f.,

pp.

424

ff.,

Poedag.

1. 8.
cf.

* Moller, KosmoJogie, p. 26,

124 129, 130.

256
unto

IX.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.


all
is

Him; "for
;

science depends on antecedent prin-

ciples

but there

nothing antecedent to the Unbegot-

ten."^
of

Origcn expressly protests against the conceptions


as supra-cosmic rather than

God which regarded Him


human
form.^
is

transcendent, 2 and as having a material substance though

not a

His own conception

is

that of a
or

nature which

absolutely simple and intelligent,

which transcends both intelligence and existence.


absolutely simple.
after,

Being

He

has no more or

less,

no before or

and consequently has no need

of either .^pa^e or

time.
is to

Being absolutely

intelligent.

His only

v.

tri )ute

know and

to

be known.

But only "like knows

like."

He
is

is to

be apprehended through the intelligence

which
of

made

in

His image

the

human mind
is

is

capable
it.

knowing the Divine by

virtue of its participation in

But
as

in the strict sense of the


:

word He

beyond our

knowledge

our knowledge

is like

the vision of a spark

compared with the splendour

of the sun.^

(2) Revelation or Mediation of the Transcendent.


as in

But
How
The
soli-

Greek philosophy,

so also in Christian theology,

the doctrine whether of a supra-cosmic or of a tran-

scendent
could

God

necessitated the further question,


?

He

pass into the sphere of the phenomenal

rougher sort of objectors ridiculed a

God who

was "

tary and destitute" in his unapproachable uniqueness:^


the

more serious heathen philosophers asked.


like,
1

If like

knows

how can your God know


5. 12.
1. 1. 2, 5, 7. *

the world? and


19 sqq.

Strom.

CeU.

G.

Deprinc.

4 Ibid. 1. \,

passim;
c.

cf.

4. 1.
cf.

36.
Celsus, 158.

e.g.

Min. Felix,

10;

Keim,

IX.

GEEEK AND CHRISTIAN TIIEOLOGT.

257

the mass of Christian philosophers, ^ both within and

without the associated communities,

felt this
it,

question,
to

or one of the questions that are cognate to

be the

cardinal point of their theology.^

The

tentative answers

were innumerable.

One

early

group of them maintained the existence of a capacity in


the Supreme Being to manifest Himself in different forms.

The conception had some elements


phism had been
versies, as

of Stoical

and some of

popular Greek theology, in both of which anthropomorpossible.^

It

came

to

an especial promi-

nence in the earlier stages of the Christological contro-

an explanation

of the nature of Jesus Christ.

It lay beneath

what

is

known

as

Modal Monarchianism,

the theory that Christ was a temporary


existence of the one God.
exist in one
"

mode

of the

It

was simply His

will to

mode

rather than in another.^


is

One and

the same God," said Noetus, "

the Creator and


pleasure,

Father of
*

all things, and,

because

it

was His good

He

The

older sort,

who

clung to tradition pure and simple, were


:

dubious of the introduction of dialectic methods into Christianity


Eus. V. 28
3. 2
;

see

cf. v.

13.

"Expavescunt ad

oiKovo/xtav," Tert. adv.

Prax.

Cf.

Weingarten,

p. 25.

Pantsenus,
world,

when asked by
if like

outside philosophers, "

How
i.

can
p.

God

know the
Tov vTTip

knows
rot

like 1" replied (Routh, Rel. Sac.

379)

/xryre aladrjTois

ra

alcrOrjTa

/jt^^re

voepws

to. vo-qra

ov yap eivai Suvarov

TO,

ovra Kara

oVra twv oVtwv XafifSdveadai., dXX ws tSta

deXijfiara yivuxxKiiv auToi/

ra ovra

(fiajxev

for if

he made

all

things

by His win, no one can deny that He knows His own will, and hence knows what His will has made. Cf. Julius Africanus (Routh, ii. 239),
Aeyerat yap ofKavvfJiws 6 O^hs
^

Trdcri
ei/xt,

rots i^ auTOv, eTretS^ ev Tracrtv IcrrtV.


as

yivofxai o

OeXw Kai dfu

used by the Naassenes,

ap.

Hipp,

5. 7.
*

Cf.

Harnack,

art.

in Encycl. Brit. " Sabellius."

258

IX.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY,

appeared to righteous
is invisible,

men

of old.
is

For when

He
:

is

not seen
is

He

and when He

seen

He

is visible

He

uncon-

tained

when He
contained

wills not to be contained,

and contained when

He
was

is

When
:

the Father had not been born,


it

He

rightly styled Father


birth,

undergo

He

was His good pleasure to became on being born His own son, not

when

another's."*

But the dominant conception was


of

in a line with that

both Greek philosophy and Greek religion.

From

the Supreme

God came

forth, or in

forms and modifications

Him existed, special by which He both made the


it.

world and revealed HimseK to


(i.)

The

speculations as to the nature of these forms

varied partly with the large underlying variations in the

conception of

God

as supra-cosmic or as transcendental,
less

and partly with the greater or

development of the
forms were viewed

tendency to give a concrete shape to abstract ideas.

They varied
forces;

also according as the


its

in relation to the universe, as


or in relation to

types and formative

the Supreme Being and His

rational creatures, as manifestations of the one

and means

of

knowledge

to the other.

The

variations are found to

exist,

not only between one school of philosophers and

another, but also in the

same

school.

For example, Ter-

tuUian distinguishes between two schools of Valentinians,


that of Valentinus himself and that of his great, though

independent, follower Ptolemy.^

The former regarded

the iEons as simply modes of God's existence, abiding

within His essence


^

the latter, in

common with
n.
I.

the great

Hipp.

9.
c.

10; Schmid, Dogmeng. 47,


Valeiit.

Tert

cf.

Sta^eVets of Ptol. ap. Iten.

12. 1

IX.

GEEEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

259

majority of the school, looked upon them as " personal

substances" which had come forth from

God and

re-

mained outside Him.


the same school

And

again, most philosophers of

made a genealogy

of

^ons, and

fur-

nished their opponents thereby with one of their chief


handles for ridicule
duction of the
:

but Colorbasus regarded the proas a single

^ons

times, however, the expressions,

momentary act.^ Somewhich came from difmeans by which


It is as inherent
it is

ferent sources, were blended.

Almost

all

these conceptions of the

God communicated Himself to the world were relative


to the conception of

Him

as

Mind.

a necessity for thought to reveal itself as


to shine.

for light

Following the tendency of current psychology

to regard the different manifestations of

to different elements in

mind

itself,

mind as relative some schools of phi-

losophers gave a separate personality to each supposed

element in the mind of God.

There came forth thought


^
:

and
or

reflexion, voice

and name, reasoning and intention


visible forms

from the original Will and Thought came forth Mind

and Truth (Keality) as

and images of the

invisible qualities (SiaOea-ecov) of the Father.^


(ii.)

But

side

by

side with this

tendency to indivi-

dualize
of the

and hypostatize the separate elements or modes

Divine Mind, there was a tendency to regard the


of

mind

God
mind

as a unity existing either as a distinct

element in His essence or objective to Him.


theory,
1

is

the only -begotten of God.'*


2
cf.

On one He alone
-qv.

ap. Iren. 1. 12. 3.

jjipp. 6. 12.

2 *

Ptolemy

ap. Iren. 1. 12. 1;

Hipp.

c.

Noet. 10, iroXvs

ap. Iren. 1. 2. 1, 5 (Yalentinians).

S2

2 GO

IX.

GEEEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

On another knows God and wishes to reveal Him. from unborn Father, and from the theory, mind is born
Mind
are born Logos

and Prudence, Wisdom and Force,

and thence

in their order all the long series of

Powers
of the as the

by whom the universe was formed.^


that of Marcus, probably contains the
others
;

Another theory,

key

to

some

the meaning of the conception of


is

Mind

only -begotten of God,

that

Mind

is

the revelation of
is,

God

to

nimself

His seK-consciousness

so to speak,

projected out of
creation

Him.

It is at once a revelation

and a

the

only immediate revelation and the only

The Father, "resolving to bring forth that which is ineffable in Him, and to endow with form that which is invisible, opened His mouth and sent forth the Logos^'' which is the image of Him, and revealed
immediate creation.

Him

to Himself.^

sent forth

The Logos or "Word, which was so was made up of distinct utterances: each
^

utterance was an ceon^ a logos^ a root and seed of being


in

other words, each

was a part and phase of God's


itself in a

nature which expressed and reflected

part and

phase of the world, so that collectively the logoi are


equivalent to the Logos,
of God.

who

is

the image and reflection

The theory

is

not far distant from that which

is

found

in the earlier Apologists, and which passed through

more

than one phase before


ance.

it

won

its

way

to general accept-

The leading point

in both is the relation of the

individual logoi to the Logos.


1

We

have already become

ap. Iron. 1. 24. 3 (Basilides)

cf.

Clem. Al. Protrep. 10, the Loijca

is

the Son of vovs.


-

Iren.

1.

14. 1, TrpoiljKaTO

\6yov

o/xoiov avry.

IX.

GEEEK AND CHRTSTIAN THEOLOGY.

261

acquainted with the syncretism which had blended the


Platonic ideas with the Stoical
logoi,

the former being

regarded as forces as well as forms, and the latter being


not only productive forces, but also the laws of those
forces
;

and which had viewed them both in their unity,

rather than in their plurality, as expressions of a single

Logos.

We
How
He

have
could

also

seen that the solution of the


create ?

problem,

God

was found
of

in the doc-

trine that

created

by means

His Logos, who im-

pressed himself in the


things.

innumerable forms of created

The

solution of the metaphysical difficulty,

How
to

can a transcendent

God know and be known ? was found


which had already been given

to lie in the solution

the cosmogonical difficulty.


contact with matter?^

How

could

God come
also

into

they were activities

The Forces were and also thoughts


:

Eeasons

woke mind
Logos

to consciousness

and the mind


like,

of

men they man knew the


in

of God, as like
it

knows

by virtue
of

of containing

within

" a seed of the Logos,'^ a particle of the divine

itself.

That divine Logos "


is

which the whole


at one time ap-

human
angels,
race,

race

partaker,"
fire,

"which had
and

peared in the form of

at another in the

form of

now by

the will of God, on behalf of the

human

had become a man, and endured

to suffer all that

the daemons effected that he should suffer at the hands


of the foolish Jews."^

The

difference

between Christ

and other men was thought


^

to be, that other

men have

As compared with

Philo,

who

emphasizes the Logos in relation to

work of creation, Justin lays stress on the Logos as Revealer, making known to us the will of God of. aTroa-roXos, Tnjph. 61.
the
:

Justin, Apol.

i.

63.

262

IX.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.


Logos^'''^
:

only a "seed of the

whereas in liim the whole


difl'erenee

Logos was manifest


tians

and the

between Chris-

and philosophers was, that the

latter lived

by the

light of a part only of the divine Logos, whereas the

former lived by the knowledge and contemplation of the

whole Logos}

Within

half a centnry after these tentative efforts/^

and largely helped by the dissemination of the Foui'th


Gospel, which had probably at
first

only a local influence,

the mass of Christians were tending to acquiesce not only


in the belief of the transcendental nature of God, but
also in the belief that, in

some way which was not yet

closely defined, Jesus Christ

was the Logos by

whom

the

world had been made, and who revealed the unknown


Father to men.

The form

in

which the

belief is stated

by

Irenseus

is

the following
"

No
is

one can

know

the Father except by the


:

Word

of God,

that

by the Son reveahng Him Son except by the good pleasure


and the Son
is

nor can any one


for the

know

the

of the Father.
:

But the Son


Father sends,
that the

performs the good pleasure of the Father


sent and comes.

And His Word knows


:

Father

and unlimited: and since He is ineffable, He himself declares Him to us and, on the other hand, it is the Father alone who knows His own Word both these truths has the Lord made known to us. Wherefore the Son reveals the knowledge of the Father by manifesting Himself: for the manifestation of the Son is the knowledge of
is,

as far as concerns us, invisible

Apol.
It

ii.

8.

would bo boyond our present purpose


:

to go into Christology.
(1) INIodal

It will be sufficient to indicate three tlieoiies


isni; (2)
Dogmc.ii'j.

MonarchianCf.

Dynamical Monarchianisiu
i.

(3)

Logos theory.

Harnack,

IGl, 220, for Gnostic Christology.

IX.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.


all

263

by the Word The all by making His Word visible to all and conversely the Word showed to all the Father and the Son, since He was seen by all. And therefore the righteous judgment of God comes upon all who, though they have seen as others, have not believed as others. For by means of the creation itself the AVord reveals God the Creator by means of the world, the Lord who is the Fashioner of the world and by means of His handiwork (man), the Workman who formed it; and by the Son, that Father who begat the Son."^
fclie

Father: for

things are manifested

Father therefore has revealed Himself to


:

(3) The Distinctions in the Nature of God^ or the Mediation

and Mediator.

;It

was by a natural process

of deve-

lopment that Christian philosophers, while acquiescing


in the general proposition that Jesus Christ

was the Logos


definition

in

human

form, should go on to frame large theories as


It

to the nature of the Logos.

was an age of

and
than

dialectic.

It

was no more
in

possible for the

mass

of

educated
it

men to
is

leave a metaphysical problem untouched,

possible

our

own days

for chemists to

leave a natural product unanalyzed.

Two main
genesis,

questions
(ii.)

engaged attention

(i.)

what was the

what

was the
thought
(i.)

nature, of the Logos.

In the speculations which

rose out of each of these questions, the influence of


is

Greek

even more conspicuous than before.

The question of the genesis of the Logos was mainly answered by theories which were separated from one another by the same broad line of distinction which
separated theories as to the genesis of the world.

The philosophers

of the school of Easilides,


first to
is,

who, as

we have seen, had


1

been the

formulate the doctrine

of an absolute creation, that


Iren. 4. 6. 3, 5, 6
;

of a creation of all things


7. 2.

cf.

Clem. Alex. Strom.

264

:X.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

out of nothing, conceived that whatever in their theory

corresponded to the Logos was equally included with


other things in the original seed.
nite proposition,

all

Hence came the

defi-

which played a large part in the contro-

versies of the fourth century, that the Logos

was made

"out

of the things that

were not."^
under various

But the majority


metaphors the
idea,
of creation, that in

of theories expressed

which was

relative to the other theory

some way the Logos had come forth


as to the nature of
that,

from God.

The

rival hypotheses

creation were reconciled

by the hypothesis
it

though

the world was created out of nothing,

was

so created

by the Logos, who was not created by God, but came forth from Him. The metaphors were chiefly those of
the "putting forth"
or fruit of a plant,
{irpo(5o\}], prolatio),

as of the leaves
son.

and of the begetting of a

They
esta-

were in use before the doctrine


blished
itself,

of the Logos

had

and some

of

them were

originally relative,,

not to the Logos, but to other conceptions of mediation

between God and the world.

They were supplemented

by

the metaphors, which also were in earlier use, of the

flowing of water from a spring, and of the radiation of


light.^

That there was not originally any important


between them,
is

distinction

disclaimer of Irenteus and

shown both by the express by the fact of their use in

combination in the same passages of the same writers.

The combination was important. The metaphors supplemented each other. Each of them contained an element
1

Cf.

Hipp.

7.

21,
;

22; Sclimid, Dogm. 52.


Hipp.
c.

Tert.

Apol 51

Noet. p. 62.

IX.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY. which ultimately expressed the

265
settled

in the theory

judgment

of the Christian world.


difficulty

The main
of

which they presented was that


of the "sole

of

an apparent inconsistency with the


God.

belief in the unity

The doctrine

monarchy"

of

God,

which had been strongly maintained against those who


explained the difficulties of the world by the hypothesis
of

two Gods in

conflict,

seemed

to

be running another
its

kind of danger in the very ranks of


Logos

defenders.

The

who

reflected

God and

revealed

Him

to rational

creatures,

who

also contained in himself the

form and

forces of the material world,

must be in some sense God.

In Athenagoras there
universe, spirit, force,

is

a pure

monism But

"

God

is

Him-

self all things to Himself,

unapproachable
^

light, a perfect

logos?''

in other writers the

idea of development or generation, however lightly the

metaphor might be pressed, seemed


ence of the Logos both outside

to involve

an exist-

God and

posterior to

Him.2

He was

the "first-born," the "first ofi'spring of

after the Father of all and the Lord God;" for "as the beginning, before all created things, God begat from Himself a kind of rational Force, which is called by the Holy Spirit (i.e. the Old Testament)

God," the " first force

sometimes 'the Glory of the Lord,' sometimes 'Son,'


1

Leg. 16;

cf.

Clem. Al. Btrom.

5.

1;

cf.

Theophilus,

2.

22, for

distinction of Aoyos TrpofjiopiKos as well as evSta^eros, denied


(loc.
cit.),

hy Clement
c.

but repeated in Tert. adv. Prax. 5


8. 2,

cf.

Hipp,

Noet. 10.

See Zahn's note in Ign. ad Magn.


eternal generation.
2

on TrpoeXdwv in relation to

Philo applied the phrase

"Son

of

God"

to the world

cf.

Keim,

Celsus, 95.

266

IX.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.


Wisdom,'
'

sometimes
'

sometimes
^^

Angel,'

sometimes

God,' sometimes
'

Lord and Logos

sometimes he speaks
:

of himself as

Captain of the Lord's host

'

for

he has

all these appellations,

both from his ministering to the

Father's purpose and from his having been begotten

by

the Father's pleasure."^


is

It follows that

"there
the

is,

and

spoken

of,

another

God and Lord beneath


it.^

Maker

of the universe."^
to ditheism

The theory thus formulated tended


It

and was openly accused of

was saved
two
dis-

from the charge by the gradual formulating


tinctions,

of

both of which came from external philosophy,

one of them being an inheritance from Stoicism, the other

from Neo-Platonism.^
Deity

The one was

that the generation

or development had taken place within the sphere of


itself:

the generation had not taken place by the

severing of a part

from the whole, as though the Divine

nature admitted of a division,^ but by distinction o


function or
^

by
c.

multiplication, as
Tryph. 61 A, 16
;

many

torches

may

be

Justin, Dial.
c.

cf.
c.

62 E, TrpofiXfjOlv yiwt^iia; and


;

Hipp.
2 2

Noet.

8, 10,
c.

Tatian,

Irenaeus ap. Schmid, p. 31.

Justin, Dial.

Tryph. 56 C,

p. 180.

Hipp. 9. 12; Callistus, while excommunicating the Sabellians Schmid, 48 ; Weing. 31), also called Hippolytus and his party ditheists. For Callistus' own view, cf. ibid. 9. 11. See Schmid, p. 50
(cf.

also p. 45 for Praxeas ap. Tert.


*

The Gnostic

controversies in regard to the relation to

God

of the

Powers who were intermediate between


to forge such intellectual instruments.
^

Him

and the world, had helped

Justin,
<i)S

C.

Trijph.

128

Zwafiu koI SovXy avrov d\X ov kot


toG /rarpos oucrias
ov nar
;

aTro-

rofJLrjv

d7ro/x6/3t^o/iei'j;s ttJs
:

cf.

Plotinus ap.

Ham.
j

Dogm. 493
cf.

Kara

jiepicriiov

d;roTo/xT;v in Tatian, 6, is dilTerent

Hipp.

c.

Noet. 10.

IX
lit

GEEEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

267

from one without diminishing the light of that one.^


other was that the generation had been eternal.

The

In

an early statement of the theory


taken place in time
:

it

it it had was argued that " God could not

was held that

have been a Father before there was a Son, but there

was a time when there was not a Son."^ But the influence of the other metaphors in which the relation was
expressed overpowered the influences which came from
pressing the conception
of

paternity.

Light,
its

it

was

argued, could never have been without


shine.^

capacity to

The Supreme Mind could never have been withThe Father Eternal was always a out His Thought. Father, the Son was always a Son.^ (ii.) The question of the nature of the eternally-begotten Logos was answered variously, according as the supra-cosmic or the transcendental idea of God was dominant in a writer's mind.^ To Justin Martyr, God is con1

Justin, Dial,

c,

Tnjpli. 61 C,

where the metaphor of "speech"

is

also employed.
2 3

ap. Tert.

c.

Hermog.

3.

For metaphor
There

of light, cf.

Monoimus

ap.

Hipp.

8.

12

also Tatian,

c. 5.

is

uncertainty as to eternal generation in Justin


It is not in Hippolytus,
p.
c.

see Engel-

hardt, p. 118.
in Irenceus

Noet. 10.

Though implied
is

(Ham.

495),

it is

in Origen that this solution attains


ff.,

clear expression, e.g. de princ. 1. 2

though his view

not through-

Emanation seemed to him to imply division out steady and unifonn. But he hovers between the Logos as thought and as into parts.
substance.

Eor Clement and Origen in

this connection, see

Harnack,

pp. 579, 581.


5

God unchangeable
:

in Himself comes into contact with


oIkovoiiI(j., c. Cels. 4.

human
changes
c.

affairs

t-q -rrpovoiq.

koi ry

14.

His

Word

according to the nature of the individuals into


4. 18.

whom

he comes,

Cels,

268

IX.

GKEEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.


lie abides

ceived as supra-cosmic.
:

"in the places

tliat

are above the heavens " the " first-begotten," the Logos,
is

the "first force after the Father: " he

is

"a

second

God, second numerically but not in


the Father's pleasure.^

'will,"

doing only
far the idea
is

It is uncertain

how
who

of personality entered into this view.

There

a similar

uncertainty in the view of Theophilus,

introduced

the Stoical distinction between the two aspects of the


Logos^

thought and speech


still

"ratio"

and "oratio;"^

while Tertullian

speaks of "virtus" side by side

with these.
It

was only gradually that the subject was raised to


which
it

the higher plane, from

never afterwards deof the transcen-

scended,

by the spread and dominance


It came, as

dental as distinguished from the supra-cosmic conception of God.

we have

already seen, mainly from

the schools of Alexandria.

It is in Basilides, in

whom
of

thought advanced to the belief that God transcended not

merely phenomena but being, that the conception


quasi-physical influence emanating from

Him

is

seen to

be

first

expressly abandoned.^

doctrine in

But the place of the later the Christian Church is mainly due to Origen.
of the

He

uses

many

same expressions

as Tertullian,

but

with another meaning.


taking, but

The Saviour

is

God, not by par-

by

essence.^

He

is

begotten of the very


is

essence of the Father.


of light
1 ^

The

generation

an outflow as

from

light.
i.

Justin,

Apol

22. 23. 32,

c.

Try. 5G.

ad AuMi/c.
net

ii.

22.

IIo held that side


c/ji'crts,

by
:

side with

God

existed,

i^ova-ia,

but

oixria,

vTrocTTao-is

see Clem. Alex. Strom. 5. 1.


p.

* Cf.

Hainack, Dugmaig.

580.

IX.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

269

But

the controversies did not so

much end with Origen

as begin with him.

From

that time they were mostly

internal to Christianity.

in origin.
'

But their elements were Greek The conceptions which were introduced into
In Christian theology that philosophy has

the sphere of Christian thought were the current ones of


philosophy.
survived.

But although
lowed the
final

it

would be beyond our present purpose which


fol-

to describe the Christological controversies

dominance in the Church


it is

of the tran-

scendental idea of God,

within that purpose to point

out the Greek elements, confining ourselves as far as


possible to the later

Greek uses

of the terms.

Ousia

(ova-la) is
is

used in at least three distinct senses

the distinction

clearly phrased

by

Aristotle.^

(a) It is used as a

material part of

synonym of h?/ie, to designate the a thing. The use is most common among
of the universe,

the Stoics.

In their monistic conception

the visible world

was regarded

as the ousia of God.^

In

the same

way

Philo speaks of the blood as the material


of the vital force. ^

vehicle, to

ovcricoSe?,

Hence

in both

philosophical and Christian cosmologies, ousia


^

was some-

ova-ta

1]

re vkr^ Kal to etSos Kal to k toutcov, 3Ietap7i. 6. 10,


is

p.

1035a, "ousia

matter, form, and the

compound

of matter

and

form."
^

ovcriav Se deov Zijvwv [lev


8e Kal XpucrtTTTros
e.g. 4, 40, cv
.

(fitjcri

tov oAov koct/xov Kal tov ovpavov.


:

6fxoi(o<;

Kal IXoo-etSojvto?, Diog. L. 7. 148

SO in

M. Anton,
iirexov,

fwov tov

Koa-fiov iiiav ovrrlav Kal ^v)(^v jxiav


:

paraphrased in the well-known lines of Pope

"

AU

are but parts of one stupendous


is,

Whole,
soul."
i.

Whose body Nature


* T^s ^wTiKvJs 5vvdii(Ds,

and God the

Quod

det pot. insid. 25,

209.

270

IX.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

times used as intercliangeable with hjle^ to denote the

matter out of which the world was made.


{h) It is

used of matter embodied in a certain form

this has since been distinguished as the substantia conereta.

In Aristotle, a sensible material thing, a particular


or a particular horse,

man

which in a predication must always


is

be the subject and cannot be a predicate,


the strictest sense.
((?)

an ousia in

It is used of the

into

which sensible

common element in the classes material things may be grouped:


it

this has since

been distinguished as the substantia ab-

stracta
(etSog),

in the language of Aristotle,


^jv

was the form

or ideal essence (to ti

ewai)P-

This sense branched

out into other senses, according as the term

was used
was the

by a

realist or a nominalist

to the

former

it

common
a^iivaTOV

essence which exists in the individual


el^o?
etvai

members
(since

of a class (to
X'^jOi?

TO

e^oV),3

and not outside them


ov
tj

rriv

oxxrlav kolI

ovcriaj

OV

whlch

exists outside them,

and by participation in which they


this latter is Plato's conception of
oua-ia.

are

what they
and

are:

elSosj^

of its equivalent

To a
^
ll-l']T

nominalist, on the other hand, ousia is only the


7}

ovcria 8e eo-Ttv

KvpiwraToi re Kal Trpwrws Kal fxaXtcTTa Xeyofxevr]


1'

tj

KaO

VTVOKiLlxkvOV Ttl'OS AeyfTttt /X?)t

VTTOKeifMei'CO TtVl eCTTlV' OtOl'


:

6 Tt avOf)w-o^ Kal 6 Tis

iWos, Cafcj.
of the form,

5, p.

2 a

but in the Metaphysics


irpwirf

a different point of view is taken,

and the term


e.g. 6,

ovaia

is

used ia

the following sense,


2 3

i.e.

11, p. 1037.

Frequently in the Metaphysics,


Arist.

e.g. 6. 7, p.

1032

&, 7. 1,

p.

1042

a.

Metuph.

6. 11, p.

1037 a.

4
^

Ibid. 12. 5, p.
e.g.

1079

6.

rarineu.

p.

132c:
etcos.

ol 6' uv tu

6'/xota

[XirkyovTa o/xota y, ovk

iK(.'./o

iiTTaL

auTo TO

IX.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.


is preclicable

271
to a

common name which

in the

same sense

number of individual existences.^ The Platonic form of realism grew out


between the
it

of a distinction
its

real

and the phenomenal, which in

turn

tended to accentuate.

The
as

visible

world of concrete

individuals

was regarded

phenomenal and transitory

the invisible world of intelligible essences was real and permanent the one was genesis^ or " becoming ;" the
:

other, ousia^ or

" being." ^ The distinction played a large


:

part in the later history of Platonism

and whereas in
class, as

the view of Aristotle the species, or smaller

being

nearer to the concrete individuals, was more ousia than


the genus, or wider class, in the later philosophy, on the

which was at the farthest remove from the concrete, and filled the widest sphere, and contained the largest number of other
contrary, that
ousia in its highest sense
classes in itself
:

was

it

was the summum

genus.^

Hence

Plotinus says that in respect of the body

we

are farthest

from
soul
;

ousia^

but that

we

partake of

it

in respect of our

and our soul


under our

is itself

a compound, not pure ousia^

but ousia with an added difference, and hence not absolutely


^

control.^
Kara
iratrOtv

ovcrca ecTtv ovofia kolvov Kai aoptcnov


o/xoTi/iWS

twv

vtt

avTrjv

iiTTOCTTacrecov

^epo/xevov,

Kai,

cwwi/i^yutos

KaTrjyopovfiivov,

Suidas,
^

s. V.

vor]Ta

eKeivoJV (TcojuaTa

arra Ka\ da-wfiara etSi] nyv dXrjdivrjv ovcriav ilvat' to. 5e yevecriv dvT overeat (^e/DO/xevr^v Ttva 7rpo(TayopevQvcn,,
.

Plat. Sophist, p. 246.


2

e.g. it is

stated

by Celsus and adopted by Origen


tw

Origen,

c.

Cels.

7.

45
^
7}

sq.

ovcrta

ai/ojTaTO)

ovcra,

jUTjSev

itvai

irpo

avrrj?,

yeuos

-tjv

to

yeviKajraTov, Porphyr. Eisag. 2. 24.


* Kao"Tos [liv rjjxi^v

Kara pXv to

crw/xa Troppin

av

i'li]

ovcrtas',

Kara

St

272

IX.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.


of ousia^

Of these two meanings

namely " species

and "gcnu-s," the former expressing the whole essence


of a class-name or concept, the latter part of the essence,

the former tended to prevail in earlier, the latter in later

Greek philosophy.
oiisia

In the one, the knowledge of the


in the definition, so that

was completely unfolded


was
itself
:

a definition

defined as " a proposition which


in the latter,
it

expresses the ousia "


so unfolded, so that

was only

in part

it is

necessary for us to

know

not

only the ousia of objects of thought, for example, whether

they

fall

within or without the class "body," but also

the species [eUti)!^

But
of the
class,

in the one

meaning

as in the other, the

members

same

class,

or the sub-classes of the

same wider

were spoken of as homoousioi: for example, there

was an argument that animals should not be killed for food, on the ground that they belong to the same class
as men, theii* souls being homoousioi with our

men

are homoousioi with


feet of the

one another,
three strangers

washed the
himself.*
Tr)v xpvyriv,

own ^ so and Abraham who came to


:

him, thinking them to be

men "of like

substance" with

Kol o fiaXicTTa

icrfiiv, fJLTi)(^OfMev oi)o-tas,

Kat

ea-fiev Tts ovcrla.

TOVTO Se
ovcria.

ecTTiv olov crvvderov tl k

Stac^opas Kat orcrtas, ovkohv Kvptws

ovB' avroovcria' 8lo ovSk

KvpiOL t)}s avrwy oucrtas, Plotin.

nn.

6. 8. 12.
1

Arist. Ajial :post. 2. 3, p.


h.

90

Tox>. 5. 2, p.

130 i; Metaph.

6. 4,

p.

1030
^
^

Sext. Empir. Pyrrh. Hypotyp.


t

3.

1. 2.

ye o/xoovcrioi at twv
1.

(^^aiav

\pv\^al

rats

rjfJ.Tpai<;,

Porphvr. de

Ahstin.
*

19.

Tovs TToSa?

w5

oyuooi'cri'wv

dvOpdnriav avdpwTTOi.

tvi\fav,

Clement,

Hum.

20. 7, p. 192.

IX.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

273

to

The difficulty of the whole conception God was felt and expressed. Some
haA^e already seen,
possible.

in its application

philosophers, as

we
was

denied that such an application

The

tide of

which Neo-Platonisni was the


ousia,

most prominent wave placed God beyond

Origen

meets Celsus's statement of that view by a recognition of


the uncertainty which flowed from the uncertain meaning
of the term.^

The

Christological controversies of the

fourth

century were

complicated to no

small

extent

from the existence of a neutral and conservative party,

who met
And, in

the dogmatists on both sides with the assertion

that neither oiisia nor hypostasis

was predicable

of God.^

spite of the acceptance of the

Nicene formula,
I^Teo-

the great Christian mystic

who most fully represents

Platonism within the Christian Church, ventured more


than a century later on to recur to the position that
has no ousia, but
is

God

hjperousios?

Even

those

who mainthis

tained the applicability of the term to God, denied the


possibility of defining it

when

so applied to

Him. In

they followed Philo


of their

" Those
shall

who do not know


But

the ousia

own

soul,

how

they give an accurate account


*

of the soul of the universe ?"


culties,

in spite of these

diffi-

the conservative feeling against the introduction


6.

1 2 ^

c.

Geh.

64.

e.g.

in S. Athanas.

ad Afr.

episc. 4, vol.
5.
i.

i.

714.

Dionys. Areop. de div. nam.


Philo, Leg. Alleg.
is

1.

30, vol.

62

cf.

de post. Cain.

8, vol.

i.

229

there

a remarkable Christian application of this in a dialogue between

a Cliristian and a

Jew who was

curious as to the Trinity, Hieronymi

Theologi Grseci, Dialogus de sancta Triniiate, in Gallandi, Vet. Pair.


Bibl. vol.
vii.,

reprinted in Migne, Patrol. Gr. vol.

xl.

845.

274
ol"

IX.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.


tlie

metapliysical terms into theology, and

philosophical

doctrine of absolute transcendence, were overborne


practical necessity of declaring that

by the
Him.

He

is,

and by the

corollary that since

He is,

there

must be an

ousia of

But when the conception


Church, the term homoousios

of the

one God as transcend-

ing numerical unity became dominant in the Christian


(oixoovctlo^)

was not unnatu-

rally adopted to express the relation of


to

God

the Father

God

the Son.

It accentuated the doctrine that the


(/cr/cr/xa)
;

Son was not a creature


applied to the

and

so of the

term as

Holy Spirit. Those who maintained that the Holy Spirit was a creature, thereby maintained that He was severed from the essence of the Father.^ The
term occurs first in the sphere of Gnosticism, and expresses
part of one of the two great concej^tions as to the origin
of the world.2

It

was rejected in

its

application to the

world, but accepted within the sphere of Deity as an

account of the origin of His plurality.

But

homoousios,

though

true,

was
It

insufficient.

It exj)ressed the unity,

but did not give sufficient definition to the conception of


the plurality.
^

was capable

of being

used by those
3, vol.
i.

Si-i]pi][iVov Ik tv/s oi;crtas

tov Trarpos, Athan. ad Antioch,

GIG.
2

Cf.

Harnack,

i.

191, 219, 476 sqq., 580.

system, the spiritual existence which

Achamoth brought
5.
1.

In the Valentinian forth was of

the same essence as herself, Iren.


three-fold sonship

1.

In that of Basilides, the


so as regards
6.

which was in the seed which God made, was Kara


:

TrdvTa T<p ovK ovTt Oe^ 6/iooTJcrios, Hippolytus, 7. 22

TO

1'

in

Epiphanes (Valentinian?),

ap. Iren.

1.

11.

3 (Hipp.

38),

it (TVi'VTro.p'^eL rrj fxovorrjTL

as Suva/its o/xooiVtos

(Ivtyj.

Cf. Clem.

Hom.

20.7;

Iren. ap. Ilarn. 481,


;'"'

"ejusdeni substantias;" Tert. Ajpol. 21,


488, 491.

"ex

unitate substantias

Ham.

IX.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

275

who held
nal.^

the phirality to be merely modal or phenome-

It thus led to the use of another term, of

which

it

is necessary to trace the history.

The term
and hyparxis
here.^

ousia in

most

of its senses

had come

to

be

convertible with two other terms, hypostasis (vTroaraa-ifj


(uTrap^i^).

The

latter of these

played but a
disregarded

small part in Christian theology, and

may be

i/cfyia-rdvai,

The term hypostasis is the conjugate of the verb which had come into use as a more emphatic
elvai.

form than

It followed almost all the senses of ousia.

Thus

it

was contrasted with phenomenal existence not

merely in the Platonic but in the conventional sense


. g. of

things that take place in the sky, some are appearinvoa-Taa-iv.^

ances, some have a substantial existence, KaO'


It also, like ousia, is used of that

which has an actual as


;*

compared with a potential existence


exists in the thinking subject.^

also of that

which

has an objective existence in the world, and not merely

Hence when things


Moreover, in
it

came

into being,
its

ova-la

was

said vcpia-rdvai.^

one of

chief uses,

namely that in which

designated

the permanent element in objects of thought, the term


^ It was expressly rejected at the Council of Antioch in connection with Paul of Samosata; and Basil, Ep. 9, says that Dionysius of Alex-

andria gave
2

it

up because of

its

use by the Sabellians

cf.

Ejx 52 (300).

It is found, e.g., in

-iwocTTao-ts

Kal

writers, e.g.

Athan. ad Afr. episc. 4, vol. i. 714, ri yap ecm. The distinction is found in Stoical Chrysippus says that the present time virapxet, the past
tj

ova-ca vrrap^is

and
2 4

future vcfiLcrTavraL.
Diels, ibid.

Diels, Doxogr. Greed. 462.


cf.

1.

372
p.

363, where

it is

contrasted with ^avrao-ta.

Sext. Empir.

192,

226.

5 Diels,

318.

lb. 469.

20

so

Kara

t7)v t^Js ovo-ias wrocTTao-tv, p.

462, 26.

t2

276
ova-la

IX.

GHEEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.


inr ca-racna.'^

had sometimes been replaced by the term


otisia

"When, therefore, the use of

in its ISTeo-Platonic

sense prevailed, there arose a tendency to differentiate

the two terms, and to designate that which in Aristotle

had been

Trpcorrj

ova-la

by the term

vTroa-Taa-L<s.
:

This

is

expressed by Athanasius

when he

says

" Ousia signifies


is

community," while "hypostasis has property which


not

common

to the hypostases of the

same ousia j"^ and


growth of the
itself

even more clearly by Basil.

There was the more reason


tinction,

for the

dis-

because the term homooiisios lent

more

readily to a Sabellian Christology.

This was anticipated

by Irenseus
and
species,

in his polemic against the Valentinian heresy


Oiisiai^ in

of the emission of iEons.

the sense of genera

might be merely conceptions in the mind


So that hypostasis came in certain schools

the alternative was that of their having an existence of


their own.^

Epict.

1.

14. 2.
:

Ath. Dial, de Trin. 2


tStoTTjra
e^^et

r]

ova-la

ti]v

KOLVorrjTa o-qfJiawei, 'while


tCjv tt/s
avrrj'i

I'TTOCTTao-ts

i^Tis

ovk

ecrrt

koivt)
it

ova-ta^

vTroa-Taa-ewv.
Cip'il.

He

elsewhere identifies
:

with

Trpoa-ioTrov

in Ath. et
IStU}-

in ExjWS. vrtliod.fid.

vTroa-raa-iS

eo-rtv

ovVta /xera tlvwv

fjLaTWV dpidfii^ TtSv 6/i.oeiSwv Sta^epovcra' Tovrea-Ti, irpocruiirov 6/ioov<riov.


Still

the identity of the two terms was allowed even after the}' were
:

tending to be differentiated
{iTTOcTTacrts

of,

Atlian.

ad Afr.

Ej). 4, vol.
6>^t
t]

i.

714,

>)

Se
ov.

ova-la ecrrt /cat ouSev ciAAo


6. (i.

a~rj[J.aivo[JLii'ov

avro to

So ad Antioch,
one

617), he tolerates the view that there

was only

vTToo-Tacrts in

the Godhead, on the ground that Im-oa-raais might


ova-ia.

be regarded as synonymous with


Sardica,

Cf.

objection at Council of

against three

i<7roa-rdo-eis

in the Godhead, instead of one

rTToo-rao-is,
3

of Father,

Son and

Spirit.

Cf.

Harn. Dogm. 693.

iotar Liroj-rao-ti', Sext. Enipir. dc Pyrrh. 2. 219.

IX.

GEEEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

277

of

tlioiiglit to

be the term for the substantia concreta, the"^


oiKrla arojuos

individual, the

of Galen.^

The

distinction,

however, was far from being universally recognized. The clearest and most elaborate exposition of it is contained
in a letter of Basil to his brother Gregory,

who was

evi-

dently not quite clear


that just as
vTroa-raa-ig

upon the

point.^

The

result was,

had been used

to express one of the

senses of

oJcr/a,

so a

new term came


vTroarraa-i?.

into use to define


Its origin is pro-

more

precisely the sense of

bably to be traced to the interchange of documents be-

tween East and West, which leading


regard to this use of
of a third term.
vTroaraai^,

to a difficulty in

ended in the introduction

So long as

ovarla

and

vir6(TTa(7i<s

had been convertible

terms, the one Latin

equivalent of

vTroo-rao-/?,

word had

substantia, the etymological

sufficed for both.

When
it

the

two words became differentiated in Greek,


advisable to
essentia,

became

mark the

difference.

However, the word


ova-la,

the natural equivalent for

jarred upon a

Latin
ova-ia,

ear.^

Consequently substantia was claimed for


lTr6(TTa(Ti<s

while for

a fresh equivalent had to be

L^

sought.

This was found in persona, whose antecedents


those of

may be

"a

character in a play," or of "person"

in the juristic sense, a possible party to a contract, in

which case Tertullian may have originated


1

this usage.*

Ed. Kuhn,

5.

662.

^p. 210; Harn. Dogm. 693.


in turn to Plautus
:

Cf. Quintiliau,
2.

who
3. 6.

ascribes

it

and
6,

to Sergius to Cicero,

riavius,

U. 2;

23;

8. 3.

33

Seneca, EjJ. 58.


cf.

and more recently Fabianus.


* Cf.

For substantia,

Quint.

7. 2. 5,

" nam

et substantia ejus sub oculos cadit."

Harnack, 489, 543


1.

for its use

by

Sabellius, &c., ib.

679

also

Orig. de 'princ.

2. 8.

278

IX.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

Such Western practice would tend to stimulate the employment of the corresponding Greek term irpoa-wTrov^

whose use hitherto seems to have been subordinate to And, finally, the philosophic terms that of vTrocrraa-i?.^
(pva-ig
(p{i<Ti<s

and natura came into

use.

In the second century

had been

distinct

from

ovala

and
it

identical
to

with

Eeason.2
tified
it,

But

in the fourth century

came

be iden-

with ovala,^ and afterwards again distinguished from

whereas the Monophysites identified it with viroaracri^. To sum up, then. We have in Greek four terms, ovalaj.

uTToa-raai?, irpoaunrov, (pvcri^,

and in Latin

three, substantia^

persona, natura, the

two

series not

being actually parallel


so in appearance.

even to the extent to

which they are

Times have changed since Tertullian's^ loose and vague usage caused no remark; when Jerome, thinking as a Latin, hesitates to speak of rpeh vTroarda-eig, by which he
understood
tres substantias,

and complains that he

is

looked upon as a heretic in the East in consequence.

There

is

a remarkable saying of Athanasius which is


it
:

capable of a wider application than he gave

it

runs

E.g. Aih. et Cyr. in Expos, orth. fid.,

I'Troo-Tacrts

Tvpoa-divov o/jlo-

ova-iov.

In Epictetus,

1. 2. 7,

14, 28,

it

denotes individuality of cha-

racter, that
*

which distinguishes one man from another.


7.
:

In Ath. ad. Ant


ovcri'a

25,

77

ra oAa StotKovcra
rj

<f>va-i<s

is

distinguished

from

Twv oAwi/

SO 7. 75,

tov oAou

(^vcris iirl rrjv Koa-fJiOTrouav


3.

Jp/xrjo-ev.
^

For

<^v(rts

in Philo, see Leg. All.

30

(i.

105).

Leontius of Byzantium says that both ova-ia and ^wris

cTSos,

Pat. Grobc. Ixxxvi. 1193.


*

E.g. odv. Prax. 2 (E. T.


tlie

ii.

337),

where he makes the distinctions


;
of.

within
p. 407.

ceconomia of the Godhead to be gradu, forma, specie, with

a unity of substantia, status, potestas

Bp. Kaye, in E. T.

ii.

IX.

GEEEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

279

as follows:^
that
to

"They seemed to be ignorant of the fact when we deal with words that require some training understand them, different people may take them in
Thus there was an
indisposition to accept
of the people.^
;

senses not only differing but absolutely opposed to each


other." ^
ova-kt.

The phrase was not understanded

A reacbut the

tion took place against the multiplicity of terms

simple and unstudied language of the childhood of Christianity,

with

its

awe-struck sense of the ineffable nature

of God,

was but a fading memory, and on the other hand was


strong.

the tendency to trust in and insist upon the results of


speculation
trine

Once indeed the Catholic doctill

was formulated, then, though not

then, the

majority began to deprecate investigations as to the

nature of God.

But

I do not propose to dwell

upon the sad and weary


more than a century

history of the

way

in

which

for

these metaphysical distinctions formed the watchwords


of political as well as of ecclesiastical parties
strife

of the

and murder, the devastation of

fair fields,

the flame

and sword, therewith connected.


philosophy was not responsible.

For

all this,

Greek

These

evils

mostly came

from that which has been a permanently disastrous fact


in Christian history, the interference of the State,

which

gave the decrees of Councils that sanction which elevated


^

De

Sententia Dionys. 18, quoted in Diet, of Christ. Biog. under

Homoousios.
2

Thus the Eoman Dionysius,


iil

in a fraguK^nt against the Sabellians

(Routh, Reliq.

pp. 373, 374), objects to the division of the fiovapxta


fiefjiepicrfievas

into rpets Swa/^eis rivas Kat


T/DCIS.

VTroo-Tacreis Kal OeioT-qras

'

dyi'oovixevov vtto

twv

Aawi',

Athan. de Synod. 8

(i.

577).

280

IX.

GEEEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

the resolutions of the majority upon the deepest subjects


of

human

speculation to the factitious rank of laws


of forfeiture,

which

must be accepted on pain


death.

banishment or

Philosophy branched
its

ofi

from theology.
It

It

became
their
for

handmaid and

its

rival.

postulated doctrines

instead of investigating them.

It

had

to

show

reasonableness or to find reasons for them.

And

ages afterwards philosophy was dead.


as

I feel as strongly

you can

feel the weariness of the discussions to

which
are,

I have tried to direct your attention.

But

it is

only by

seeing
that

how minute and how purely speculative they


Whether we do

we can

properly estimate their place in Christian


or do not accept the concluof the Christian

theology.
sions in

which the greater part

world

ultimately acquiesced,

we must

at least recognize that

they rest upon large assumptions.

Three may be

indi-

cated which are all due to the influence of Greek philosophy.^


^ [As this summing up never underwent the author's final revision, and the notes which follow stand in his MS. parallel with the corre-

sponding portion of the Lecture as originally delivered,


thought well to place them here.
(1)

it

has been

Ed.]

The tendency

to abstract has

combined with the tendency


tlie

to

regard matter as evil or impure, in

production of a tendency to

form rather a negative than a positive conception of God. The majority of formularies define God by negative terms, and yet they have claimed

which are negative a positive value. to Greek philosophy to the hypothesis of the chasm (2) between spirit and matter the tendency to interpose powers between It may be held that the attempt to the Creator and His creation. solve the insoluble problem, how God, who is pure spirit, made and sustains us, has darkened the relations which it has attempted to explain by introducing abstract metaphysical conceptions.
for conceptions

We

owe

IX.

GREEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.

2 SI

(1) It is

assumed that metaphysical distinctions are


but
not

important.
I
less

am

far from saying that they are not

it is

important to recognize that

much

of

what we believe
There
is

rests

upon

this

assumption that they

are.

other-

wise no justification whatever for drawing men's thoughts

away from
plate,

the positive knowledge which

we may
us, to

gain

both of ourselves and of the world around

contem-

even at

far distance, the conception of Essence.


is

(2)

The second

the assumption that these metaphy-

sical distinctions

which we make in our minds correspond


world around
it.
;

to realities in the

us, or in

God who
but

is

beyond the world and within


Again, I
is at least

am

far

from saying that they do not

it

important for us to recognize the fact that, in

speaking of the essence of either the world or God,

we

are assuming the existence of something corresponding


to our conception of essence in the one or the other.^

(3)

The

third assumption

is

that the idea of perfection

which we
It is

transfer from ourselves to God, really corre-

sponds to the nature of His being.

assumed that
than change.

rest is better

than motion, that

passionlessness is better than feeling, that changelessness


is better

selves
selves,

know these things of ourof One who is unlike ourwho has no body that can be tired, who has no
we cannot know them
that even in the later

We

It

may be noted

Greek philosophy there

was a view, apparently


Origen, de Princ, i.
1.

identical with that of Bishop Berkeley, that

matter or substance merely represented the


34.

sum

of the

qualities,

282

IX.

OKEEK AND CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY.


its

imperfection that can miss

aim, with
perfect

whom unhindered
life.

movement may conceivably be


it

I have spoken of these assumptions because, although

would be

difficult to

over-estimate the importance of

the conceptions by which Greek thought lifted the conception of

men from

God

as a

Being with human form and


infinite Presence, the

human
feel

passions, to the lofty height on which they can

around them an awful and

time

may have come when


and research

in face of the large

knowledge of

His ways which has come to us through both thought

we may be destined
life.^

to transcend the as-

sumptions of Greek speculation by

new

assumptions,

which

will lead us at once to a diviner

knowledge and

the sense of a diviner

1 These Lectures are the history of a genesis it would otherwise have been interesting to show in how many points theories which have been thought out in modern times revive theories of the remote past of
:

Christian antiquity.

Lecture X.

THE INFLUENCE OF THE MYSTEEIES UPON


CHKISTIAN USAGES.

A. The Greek Mysteries and related Cults.


Side by side in Greece with the religion which was

openly professed and with the religions rites which were


practised in the temples, not in antagonism to them, but

intensifying their better elements and elaborating their


ritual,

were the splendid


Side

rites

which were known as the

Mysteries.

by

side also with the great political

communities, and sheltered within them by the

common
political

law and drawn together by a stronger than

brotherhood, were innumerable associations for the practice of the

new forms

of

worship which came in with

foreign commerce, and for the expression in a

common

worship of the religious feelings which the public religion


did not satisfy.

These associations were known as dlaaoh


of the mysteries,

epavoi or opyeuive?.

I will speak

first

and then

of the

associations for the practice of other cults.

The mysteries were probably the survival of the oldest religions of the Greek races and of the races which pr-eceded them. They were the worship not of the gods
1.

284

X.

THE INFLrENCE OF THE MYSTERIES


Zeus and Apollo and Athene, but
of the gods

of the sky,

of the earth

and the under-world, the gods of the pro-

ductive forces of nature and of death.^

The most important

of

them were celebrated

at Eleusis,

near Athens, and the scattered information which exists

about them has been made more impressive and more


intelligible to us

by excavations, which have brought

to

light large remains of the great temple

Greece
a cult

in

the
It

largest in

which they were

celebrated.

had been
borrowed
settled.

common

to the Ionian tribes, probably

from the
It

earlier races

among whom they had

was

originally the cult of the powers

which produce

the harvest, conceived as a triad of divinities

god

and two goddesses, Pluto, Demeter and Kore, of

whom

the latter became so dominant in the worship, that the

god almost disappeared from view, and was replaced by a divinity, lacchus, who had no place in the original
myth. 2
fice,

Its chief elements

were the

initiation, the sacri-

and the scenic representation


life

of the great facts of


histories of

natural

and human

life,

of

which the

the gods were themselves symbols.^


*

For what follows, reference in general

may be made

to Keil,

Attische Culte aus Inschriften, Philologus, Bd. xxiii. 212

259, 592
441 sqq.,

622
^

and Weingarten, Histor.

Zeitschrift, Bd. xlv. 1881, p.

as well as to the authorities cited in the notes.

Foucart, Le culte de Pluton duns la religion eleusinienne, Bulletin


pj).

de Correspondance Helleniquc, 1883,


2

401 sqq.

The

successive stages or acts of initiation are variously described


at least four: tdOapa-L';

and enumerated, but there were


purification
fivr)(TL<;
;

the preparatory
;

crvcr-aa-ts

the

the

initiatory rites
;

and

sacrifices

reXirrj or

prior initiation

and

kirovTiia,

the higher or greater

initiation,

which admitted

to the Trapdoocrts

tmv Upwv, or holiest act of

the

ritual.

Cf. Lobeck, Aglaojjh. pp.

39

if.

UPON
(i.)

CIIiaSTIAN USAGES.

285

The main underlying conception

of initiation was,

that there were elements in

human

life

from which the


fit

candidate must purify himself before he could be

to

approach God.

There was a distinction between those

wlio were not purified,


of being purified,
to

and those who, in consequence


to a diviner life

were admitted

and

The creation of this The race of mankind distinction is itself remarkable. was lifted on to a higher plane when it came to be taught that only the pure in heart can see God. The
the hope of a resurrection.

rites of Eleusis

were originally confined

to the inhabitants
all

of Attica: but they


later to all

came

in time to

be open to
to

Greeks,

Eomans, and were open

women
to

as well as

to men.^

The bar

at the entrance

came

be only a

moral bar.

The whole ceremonial began with a solemn proclamation


:

" Let no one enter whose hands are not clean and
is

whose tongue

not prudent."
enter
is

In other mysteries
is

it

was

"

He

only

may

who

pure from

all

defile-

ment, and whose soul

conscious of no wrong, and


^

who

has lived well and justly."

The proclamation was probably accompanied by some words or sights of terror. When Nero went to Eleusis and thought at first of being initiated, he was deterred by it. Here is another instance of exclusion, which is not less important in its bearing upon Christian rites. ApoUonius of Tyana was excluded because he was a
^

An

interesting inscription has recently

come

to light, -which

shows

that the public slaves of the city were initiated at the public expense. Foucart,
*
I.e.

p.

394.
c.

Cf. Origen,

Cels. 3. 59.

286
magician

X.

THE INFLUENCE OF THE MYSTERIES and not pure in respect


of ra Sai/novia

(70*??)

he had intercourse with other divinities than those of


the mysteries, and practised magical
rites.^

We learn
In
it

something from the parody

of the mysteries

in Lucian's romance of the pseudo-prophet Alexander.

Alexander

institutes a celebration of mysteries

and

torchlights and sacred shows,


cessive days.

which go on
is

for three suc-

On

the

first

there

a proclamation of a

similar kind to that at Athens.

" If any Atheist or


as a spy

Christian or Epicurean has


val, let

come

upon the

festi-

him

flee

let

the initiation of those

who

believe

Then forthwith at the The prophet himself sets the example, saying, "Christians, away!" and the whole crowd responds, " Epicureans, away " Then the show begins the birth of Apollo, the marriage
in the

god go on successfully."

very beginning a chasing away takes place.

of Coronis, the

coming
and in

of -i^sculapius, are represented

the ceremonies proceed through several days in imitation


of the mysteries
glorification of

Alexander.

The proclamation was thus intended to exclude notorious sinners from the first or initial ceremonial.^ The rest was
1 ^

Philostratus, Vita Apoll.


Cf. Lobeck, Aglaoph. pp.
ii.

4. 18, p.

138.
ff. ;

2 j^j^x.

38.

39

ff.

and 89
inoa|t

Welcker,

Griecli. Got-

terl.

530

532,

"

The

first

and

important condition required


is

of those

who would

enter the temple at Lindus

that they be pure in

heart and not conscious of any crime."

Professor W. M. Ramsay in
at

Ency. Brit.

s. v. "Mysteries." For purification before admission to the worship of a temple, see, in G.I. A. iii. Pt. i. 73. 74, instances of regu-

lation prescribed at the temple of


e.g. [XTrjOeva

Men Tyrannus

Laurium

in Attica,

aKadapTov

irpocrdyeiv, various periods of jiurification

being

specified.

on the inscr. of Andania in Messenia, b.c. 91 ; the mysteries of the Cabiri in Le Bas and Foucart, Inscr. du Pcloponnese, ii. 6, p. 161; and Sauppe, die
Cf. Reinach, Traite d'Epigr. Grecque, p. 133,

Mysterieninschr, von Aiidania.

UPON CHRISTIAN USAGES.


thrown upon a man's own conscience.

287

He was

asked

to confess his sins, or at least to confess the greatest

" To whom am I to crime that he had ever committed. ?" said Lysander to the mystagogoi who were confess it

conducting him.

" To the gods."

"

Then

if

you

will

go away," said

he,

"I

will tell them."

Confession was followed by a kind of baptism.^


candidates for initiation
sea.

The
of the

bathed in the pure waters

The manner of bathing and the number of immersions varied with the degree of guilt which they had confessed.
the bath

They came from

new men.

It Avas a KaOapa-i?,

a Xovrpovj a laver of regeneration.


certain forms of abstinence
:

They had
;

to practise

they had to fast

and when

they ate they had to abstain from certain kinds of food.^

The purification was followed by a sacrifice was known as a-oor/jpia a sacrifice of salvation
(ii.)

which
:

and in

addition to the great public sacrifice, each of the candi-

dates for initiation sacrificed a pig for himself.^


^

Then
lava-

Tertullian, de Baptismo, 5, "

Nam

et sacris

quibusdam per

crum
to

initiantur

ipsos etiam deos suos lavationibus efferunt;" Clem.


4
:

Alex. Strom. Bk.


all,

5.

"

The mysteries

are not exhibited incontinently

but
:

only after certain purifications

and previous instructions."

Ibid. 5. 11

"It

is

not without reason that in the mysteries that obtain

among the

Greeks, lustrations hold the first place, as also the laver among

the Barbarians.

After these are the minor mysteries, which have some


is

foundation of instruction and of preliminary preparation for what

to

come

and the great mysteries, in whicli nothing remains to be learned of the universe, but only to contemplate and comprehend nature and things." We have thus a sort of baptism and catechumeuate,
after
;

The

fast lasted nine days,

and during

it

certain kinds of food were

wholly forbidden.
^

Cf. Lobeck, Aglaoph. pp.

189
:

197.
is

and a greater initiation law that those who have been admitted to the
lesser

There was a

" It

a regulation of

lesser
5,

should again be
:

initiated into the greater mysteries."

Hippol.

see the

whole

chapter, as also cc. 9, 20.

288

X.

THE IXFLUEXCE OF THE MASTERIES

there was an interval of two days before the more solemn


sacrifices

and shows began.


of

procession each

those

They began with a great who were to be initiated


from Athens
at sunrise

candying a long lighted torch, and singing loud pa3ans


in

honour

of the god.^

It set out

The next day there was Then followed three days and nights in which the initiated shared the mourning of Demeter for her daughter, and broke their fast only by
and reached Eleusis at night.
sacrifice.

another great

drinking the mystic

kvkccov

drink of flour and water

and pounded mint, and by eating the sacred cakes.


(iii.)

And

at night there

were the mystic plays

the

scenic representation, the

drama in symbol and


:

for sight.

Their torches were extinguished

they stood outside

the temple in the silence and the darkness.

The doors
before

opened

there

was a blaze of

light

and

them
loss

was acted the drama of Demeter and Kor^


of the daughter, the

the

wanderings of the mother, the birth

of the child.

It

was a symbol of the earth passing


It

through
It

its

yearly periods.
is

was the poetry

of !N'ature.

was the drama which

acted every year, of

summer
fruits

and winter and spring.

Winter by winter the

and flowers and grain

die

down

into the darkness,

and
life.

spring after spring they come forth again to

new

"Winter after winter the sorrowing earth


1

is

seeking for

Cf.

Clem. Alex. Profrejjf. 12:

"0

truly sacred mysteries!

stainless light!

My
:

way

is

lighted with torches and I survey the

heavens and
is

God

am become

holy whilst I

am

initiated.

The Lord

the hierophant, and seals while illuminating him who is initiated," &c. lb. 2 : " Their (Demeter's and Proserpine's) wanderings, and seizure,

and

grief,

Eleusis celebrates by torchlight processions;" and again p. 32.


i.

So
2

/Elius Aristid.

p. 45-4 (cd. Canter),

ras

(/)cucr</>opovs

vvKzai.
2.

"I have

fasted, I

have drunk the cup," &c. Clem. Alex. Proircpt.

UPON CEEISTIAN USAGES.


Iier lost

289
the

child

the hopes of

men look forward to


life.

new

blossoming of spring.
It

was a drama
It

also of

human

It

was the poetry


to

of the hope of a world to come.


life.

Death gave place

was a
fit

piirgatio

animce,

might be

for the presence of God.


initiated

by which the soul Those who had


a

been baptized and

were

lifted into

new

life.

Death had no

terrors for them.

The

blaze of light after


life

darkness, the symbolic scenery of the

of the gods,

were a foreshadowing of the


There
is

life to

come.^

a passage in Plutarch which so clearly shows

tbis, that I will


"

quote
dies,

it.^
is

When

man

he

like those

who

are being initiated

The one expression, reAeurav the other, Our whole life is but a succession of TcXda-Oai, correspond. wanderings, of painful courses, of long journeys by tortuous ways without outlet. At the moment of quitting it, fears, terrors, quiverings, mortal sweats, and a lethargic stupor, come over us and overwhelm us but as soon as we are out of it, pure spots and meadows receive us, with voices and dances and the
into the mysteries.
.
.

solemnities of sacred words and holy sights.

It is there that

man, having become perfect and initiated restored to liberty, really master of himself celebrates, crowned with myrtle, the

most august mysteries, holds converse with just and pure souls, looking down upon the impure multitude of the profane or uninitiated, sinking in the mire and mist beneath him through fear of death and through disbelief in the life to come, abiding

in

its

miseries."

There was probably no dogmatic teaching

were possibly no words spoken


1

there

it

was

all

an acted

Cf. iElius Arislid.

The gain
2

of the festival
lie in

they would not

454, on the burning of the temi:)lc at Eleusis. was not for this life only, but that hereafter darkness and mire like the uninitiated.
i.

Fragm.
p.

ap.

Stob. Florileg.

120.

Leuormant, Cont. Rev. Sept.

1880,

430.

290
parable.^

X.

THE INFLUENCE OP THE MYSTERIES


it

But

was

all

kept in silence.
it.

There was an
sight in comIt

awful individuality about

They saw the


for himself.
life.

mon, but they saw


personal

it

each

man

was his
glamouito

communion with
it

the divine

The

and the glory of


all

were gone when


effect of it

it

was published
to

the world.2

The

was conceived

be a

change both of character and of relation to the gods.

The
go

initiated

were by virtue
life to

of their initiation

made

partakers of a
to the

come.

" Thrice happy they

who
:

world below having seen these mysteries


is life

to-

them alone
2.

there, to all others is misery."^

In time, however, new myths and new forms of


It is not easy to

worship were added.

draw a

definite line

between the mysteries,

strictly so called,

and the forms of


mysteries, but

worship which went on side by side with them. I^ot only


are they sometimes spoken of in

common as

there

is

a remarkable syncretist painting in a non- Chris-

tian catacomb at

Eome,
of

in

which the elements of the


of

Greek mysteries

Demeter are blended with those

Sabazius and Mithra, in a

way which shows

that the

worship was blended


1

also.*

These forms of worship


oi fxaOeTv rt Seiv dAAol ira^etv kzI

Synes. Orat.

p.

48

(ed. Petav.),

8iaTe6T]vai yevofxevovs SrjXovoTi einTrjSeiovs.

But the

fivcTTaywyol pos-

sibly gave

some private instruction


to

to the groups of fiva-Tai

who were

committed
2 3

them.
p.

Cf.

Lenormant, Cont. Rev. Sept. 1880,


:

414

sq.

8; 493 B, Phcedo. G9 C (the lot of the uninitiated). They were bound to make their life on earth correspond to iheir initiation ; see Lenormant, zd siqy. p. 429 sqq. In later uii.il.ii it was supposed actually to make them better ; Sopatros in Walz,
Cic. Legg.
2.

Soph. frag. 719, ed. Dind.


14.

so in effect Pindar, /m^;. thren.

36

Plato, Gorg. p.

Rhet. Gr.
^

viii.

114.

See

Garrucci, Les Mystercs

da Syncrctisme Phrygien dans

les

Caiacomhes Romaines de Prxtexiat, Paris, 1S54.

UPON CHEISTIAN USAGES.


also

291

had an

initiation

they also aimed at a pure religion.

The

condition of entrance was:

"Let no one
it

enter the

most venerable assembly of the association unless he be


pure and pious and good."
individual

Nor was
to

left

to

the

conscience

man had
much

be tested and
in

examined by the

officers.^

But the main element


it.

the association was not so


sacrifice

the initiation as the

and the common meal which followed

The

offerings

were brought by individuals and offered in comis

mon

they were offered upon what

sometimes spoken
distributed

of as the " holy table."

They were

by the
in

servants (the deacons), and the offerer shared with the rest
in the distribution.

In one

association, at

Xanthos

Lycia, of which the rules remain on an inscription, the


offerer

had the right


There was in

to half of

what he had brought.


effort after real feliowis

The

feast

which followed was an


it,

ship.2

as there

in Christian times, a
in a

sense of

communion with one another


earliest

communion
the

with Grod.

During the

centuries

of

Christianity,

mysteries, and the religious societies which were akin


to the mysteries,^ existed

on an enormous scale throughout

the eastern part of the Empire.


in

There were elements


recoiled,

some of them from which Christianity

and

against which the Christian Apologists use the language


^

There was a further and larger process before a


c.

man was

re Act o?.

Tert. adv. Valent.


'"'

1,

says that

it

took five years to become reAeios.


that of the Arval feast at

The most
fivcTTai
is

elaborate account

is

Kome

ci.
^

iienzen, Acta fratrum ArvaUura.

used of members of a religious association


in Epiph. 55. 8

at

Teos

(Inscr. in Bullet, de Uorresp. Hellenique, 1880, p. 164),

and of the

Koman Monarchians

of.

Harnack, Dogm. 628.

U 2

292

X.

THE INFLUENCE OF THE MYSTERIES


But, on the other hand, the majority
as Christianity itself

of strong invective.^
of

them had the same aims


of

the

aim
life,

worshipping a pure God, the aim of living a pure


of cultivating the spirit of brotherhood.'-^

and the aim

They were

part of a great religious revival which distin-

guishes the age.^

B.
It

The Mysteries and the Church.

was inevitable when a new group of associations came to exist side by side with a large existing body of associations, from which it was continually detaching
members, introducing them into
its

own midst with


upon

the

practices of their original societies impressed

their

minds, that this

new group should tend

to assimilate,

with the assimilation of their members, some of the This is what we elements of these existing groups.^
1

Clem. Alex.
(ii.

Protrejy. 2
el

Hippol.

1, proo???i.
lo

Cf. Philo, de sacrif.

12
2

260), Tt yap
also

KaXa ravT

icrrlv

fivarTai k. t. X.

They

had the same sanction

the

fear of future punishments,

cf.

Celsus in Oiig. 8. 48.

Origen does not controvert this statement,


effect of Christianity as

but appeals to the greater moral


for
its

truth.
is

They

possibly also

an argument communicated divine knowledge.


artists at

There

an inscription of Dionysiac
as Oavfiacnov

Nysa, of the time of the


of the temples at
Bull,

Antonines, in honour of one

who was OeoXoyo?


1.

Pergamos,
Ev.
3

deoXoyov and tQv

dTroppi'jTWV fxvcTTijv.

de Corr. Hellen. 1885,


5. 14.

p. 124,

4;

cf.

Porphyry in Eusebius, Prap.

This revival had

many

forms,

cf.

Harnack, Dogm.

p. 101.

* Similar practices existed in the Church and in the new religions which were growing up. Justin Martyr speaks of the way in whirh, under the inspiration of demons, the supper had been imitated in the o-rrep kuI iv rots tov MiOpa jxv(tti]p'iols irapeSwKav !Mithraic mysteries
:

yiVifrOai

p.i.iJ.rj(ja.p.ivoi

oi

Trovr]pol

Sat/xoves

ApoJ.

1.

66.

Tertuliiatl

points to the fact as an iustance of the power of the devil {de prcBse.

UPON CHRISTIAN USAGES.


find to

293

have been in fact the

case.

It is possible that

they made the Christian associations more secret than


before.

Up

to a certain time there is


secrets.

no evidence that

Christianity had any


to the world.

It

was preached openly


were simple and
all is

It

guarded worship by imposing a moral

bar to admission.
teaching was public.

But

its

rites

its

After a certain time

changed

mysteries have arisen in the once open and easily accessible faith,

and there are doctrines which must not be

declared in the hearing of the uninitiated.^


hcer.

But

the in-

40)

**
:

mysteriis semulatur."

qui ipsas quoque res sacramentorum divinorinn idolorum He specifies, inter alia, " expositionem delictorum
Celsus, too,
:

de lavacro repromittit .... celebrat et panis oblationem."


speaks of the
c.

fiva-Tyjpta

and the TeXeral of Mithras and others

Orig.

Cels. 6. 22.
^

The

objection

secrecy of the Christian associations

which Celsus makes (c. Cels. 1. 1; Keim, p. 3) to the would hardly have held good in
Origen admits
(c.

the apostolic age.

Cels. 1. 7) that there are exoteric

and

esoteric doctrines in Christianity,

and

justifies it

by

(1) the philo-

sophies, (2) the mysteries.

On

the rise of this conception of Christian


cf.

teaching as something to be hidden from the mass,


in Tert.
c.

the Valentinians

Vcdent.

1,

where there
:

is

a direct parallel

drawn between
two
classes

them and the mysteries


TTvev^aTiKol

also the distinction of

men

into
:

and

xpvx^xol or vXikol
2^'>'0(^'^'^i

among the Gnostics

Harn. Dogm.

222,

cf.

Hipp.

1,

V- ^>

"^^^ condemns ra aTropprjra ixvcrr-qpia

of the heretics, adding, Ka\ Tore SoKi/iao-avres Secr/xtov elvai t^s a/xapria?
fivovcri
fMrfve

TO TeAciov twv KaKo^v TrapaStSovres, opKois

87/crai/Tes firJTe e^eiTreiv

rvxovTL jnexaSouvac k.t.X. Yet this very secrecy was naturalized in the Church. Cf. Cyril Hier. Catech. vi. 30; Aug. in Psalm ciii., Horn.
T(^

xcvi. in Joan.

Theodoret, Qucest. xv. in Num., and Dial.

ii.

{Inconfvsus)

Chry.

Hom.
Se

xix. in Matt.
is

Sozomen's
TOtaura

(1. 20. 3)

reason for not giving

the Nicene Creed


u(re/3ajv

significant alike as regards motive


tTTto-TTj/iovwv,

and language
Se

(}>i\wv koI to,

ota

nva-jais /cat
7rr^vcra

fjLva-TaytoyoLS /xovots Seov


T7]i'

raSe Aeyetv kol aKOvecv v^rjyovpikvijiv,


ct/Avr^Tcoi/

(3ovXr]v' oi

yap

aTreiKos Kai Tiov

rtv'as

ryjSe

t-q

[ii[3Xia

294

X.

THE INFLUENCE OF THE MTSTERIEJ?

fluence of the mysteries, and of the religious cults which

were analogous

to the mysteries,

was not simply general

they modified in some important respects the Christian


sacraments of Baptism and the Eucharist
that
is,

the

practice,

of admission to the society

fication,

and the practice

of

by a symbolical puriexpressing membership of


I will ask

the society
sider first

by a common meal.

you

to con-

Baptism, and secondly the Lord's Supper, each

in its simplest form,

and then I will attempt

to

show

how

the elements which are found in the later and not

in the earlier form, are elements

which are found outside

Christianity in the institutions of


1.

which I have spoken.

Baptism. In the earliest times, (1) baptism followed

at once

upon conversion
it

(2) the ritual


it

was

of the sim-

plest kind, nor does

appear that

needed any special

minister.

The
the

first

point

is

shown by the Acts

of the Apostles

men who repented at Pentecost, those who believed when Philip preached in Samaria, the Ethiopian eunuch,
Cornelius, Lydia, the jailor at Philippi, the converts at

Corinth and Ephesus, were baptized as soon as they were

known

to recognize Jesus Christ as the Messiah.^


is

The

second point

also

shown by the

Acts.

It

was a bap-

tism of water.

A later,
"he
1

though

still

very early stage, with significant


^

modifications, is seen in the " Teaching of the Apostles :"


(1) no special minister of baptism
is specified,

the vague

that baptizeth" (o
ii.

/3a7rT/^a>i^)

seeming to exclude a
x.

Acts
8
;

38, 41;

viiL 12, V6, 30,

38;

47,

48;

xvi. 15,

33;

xviii,
-

xix. 5.

7.

UPON CHEISTIAN USAGES.


limitation of
is specified is
it

295

to

an

officer

(2) the only element that

hut there

is

water; (3) previous instruction is implied, no period of catechumenate defined ; (4) a

fast is enjoined before baptism.

These were the simple elements of early Christian


baptism.

When

it

emerges after a period

of obscurity

like a river

which flows under the sand


point of change

the enormous

changes of later times have already begun.


(i.)

The

first

is

the change of name.

(a) So early as the time of Justin

Martyr we find a

name given
ipcorl^ecrOai).'^

to

baptism which comes straight from the

Greek mysteries
It
(b)

the name "enlightenment"


Came
to

(<^ft)Tio-/xo?,

be the constant technical term.^


(^a-cppayl?),

The name "

seal"

which

also

came both

from the mysteries^ and from some forms of foreign cult, was used partly of those who had passed the tests and

who were " consignati," as Tertullian calls them,^ partly of those who were actually sealed upon the forehead in ;sign of a new ownership.
1

Apol.

1.

61;

cf.

Otto, vol.
1.

i.

p. 146, n.

14; Engelhardt,
p.

p. 102.

2
]S"az.

Clem. Alex. Pcedag.


for baptism,

Can. Laod. 47, Bruns,


ot <^coTi{'d/>ievot

Orat. xl. pp. 638, 639.


ot

Hence

= those
Cf.

78; Greg. being preCyr. Hier.

pared

^wTto-^evres

=
ff.

the baptized.

Catech. 13. 21, p. 193 et passim.


^

Lobeck, Aglao^jh.
Apol. 8
:

p. 3G, cf.

31

talia initiatus et

consignatus
cf,

= /xep)rj/xevo9
1.

Kal ecr^payw-

jxevoi.
^

See Otto,

vol.

i,

p.

141;

ad

Valent.

For the

seal in baptism, cf.


3.

Clem. Al. Strom.

2.

3; Quis

dives,

42, ap. Euseb. Hist.


Catech. 5
;

Greg. E"az.

23; Euseb. Vita Const. Orat. 40, p. 639 ; Orig. c.


12.

1. 4.

Cels.

62; Cyr. Hier. 6. 27. For the


initia-

use of imagery and the terms relating to sealing


tion
IS

from the mysteries, Clem. Al. Protrep.


1.

illumination
The
si] is

effect of

baptism

illumination, perfection, Pa^dag.

6; hence

before and after

296
(e)
it

Z.

THE INFLUENCE OF THE MYSTERIES


nxva-rvpiov is

The term

applied to baptism,^ and with

comes a whole

series of technical

terms unknown to
to the mysteries,

the Apostolic Church, but well

known

and explicable only through ideas and usages peculiar to


them.

Thus we have words expressive


yuuj/crf?,^

either of the rite

or act of initiation, like

^^^^^^

3 'reXeiwa-i?,'^ ixva-ra;

jcoyla)^ of the agent or minister, like /xL/o-raycoyo?

of the

subject, like

fJ.ua-Ta'yco'yovjuLeuo?/ /J.fjLV}]fxivog, fivrfie'i^, Or,

with

reference to the unbaptized,

u/xvijTo^fi

In

this terminology

we

can more easily trace the influence of the mysteries

than of the
(ii.)

Kew

Testament.^
is

The second point

the change of time, which


(a) Instead of
it

involves a change of conception,

baptism
to

being given immediately upon conversion,


in all cases postponed
baptism,
i.e.

came

be

by a long period
2.

of preparation,
13.

enlightonment, are different, Strom.

Early instances
cf.

of cr^yDayt? are collected in Gebhardt on 2 Clem. pp. IGS, 169;


Cyr. Hier. Ccdech. 18. 33,
^

als>

p.

301.
;

Greg. Naz. Oraf. 39, p. 632


ii.

Chrys. Horn. 85 in Joan. xix. 34

Sozomen,
2

8, 6.
i.

Sozomen,

3. 5.

^ 1.

Dion. Areop. Eccles. Hierar.


6, p.
;

3, p.

242.

Clem. Alex. Pccdag.

Greg. Naz. Orat. 40, p. 648


5

93; Atlian. Cont. Ar. Dion. Areop. Eccles. Hier.


Tlieod. in Cantic.
1. 1. 1.

3, p. 3,

413 0.;

242.

Chrys. Horn. 99, vol.

v.

*
"^

Dion. Areop. Eccles. Hier. 1.1; Mijs. Theul.


Chrys. Horn. 1 in Act. p. 615
ii.
;

Ham. 21

acZ

^j)^^:)?^/.

Antioch;

Sozomen,

17. 9.

8 Sozomen, i. 3. 5 ; ii. 7. 8 ; iv. 20. 3; vi. 38. 15 ; vii. 8. 7, etjmssim. These examples do not by any means exhaust or even adequately represent the obligations in the sphere of language, and of the ideas it at once denotes and connotes, which the ecclesiastical theory and practicebut they may help to indicate of baptism lies under to the mysteries
;

the degree and nature of the obligation.


^ For the sphere of the influence of the mysteries on the languageand imagery of the New Testumeut, see 1 Cor. ii. 6 ff.; cf. Ileb. vi. 4

UPON cnmsTiAN usages.


and in some cases deferred until the end
of life.^
(b)

297

The

Christians were separated into two classes, those

who

had and those who had not been baptized.


regards
it

Tertullian

as a
:

mark

of heretics that they


is

have not this

distinction

who among them


:

a catechumen,

who a

believer, is uncertain

they are no sooner hearers than

they "join in the prayers;" and "their catechumens


are perfect before they are fully instructed {edocti)^'^

And
for
{c)

Basil gives the custom of the mysteries as a reason

the absence of the catechumens from the service.^

As

if

to

show conclusively that the change was due


seen, distinguished

to the influence of the mysteries, baptized persons were,

as

we have

from unbaptized by the

very term which was in use for the similar distinction in


regard to the mysteries
the minister

initiated

and uninitiated, and

is ixva-raywyo's^

and the persons being baptized

are ixvcrraywyovfiepou

I dwell

upon these broad

features,

and especially on the transference


is

of names, because it

necessary to show that the relation of the mysteries

to the sacrament

was not merely a curious coincidence


of

and what

have said as to the change

name and the

change of conception, might be largely supplemented

by evidence
^

of parallelism in the benefits


8. 32.

which were con-

Apost. Const
pp. 443

Cf. passages

quoted from Clem. Alex, and

others, supra, p. 287, note 1; p. 295, notes 2


vol.
2 2
c.
iii.

and

5.

446.
fin.

See Bingham,

Deprcesc.

hcer. 41.

Cf.

Epiphan. 41. 3; Apost. Const.

12.
cf.

a QvSk

eTTOTTTeveii'

e^ecm

Tois a/xv7jT0ts, de Spir. Sciuct. 27;

Orig.

Cels. 3.

59 ad

and

them
8.

to participation

"then and not before do we invite in our mysteries," and " initiating those already
60, e.g.
Cf. Diet, Christian Antiquities^

purified into the sacred mysteries."


V. Disciplina

Arcani.

298

X.

THE INFLUENCE OP THE MYSTERIES


There are

ceived to attach to the one and the other.

many
(a)

slighter indications serving to supplement

what has

been already adduced.

As

those

who were admitted


had a formula
to

to the inner sights


(criyV/3oXoi/

of the mysteries

or pass- word

or

crw0>7//a),

SO the

catechumens had a formula which

was only entrusted


catechumenate

them

in the last days of their


itself

the

baptismal formula

and the

Lord's Prayer.^
occupies

In the Western

rites the iraditio symholi

an important place
rite for
it.

in

the whole ceremony.

There was a special

It took place a

week

or

ten days before the great

office of

Baptism on Easter-eve. and


to the present

Otherwise the Lord's Prayer and the Creed were kept


secret

and kept

so as mysteries
for

day

the technical
(/3)

name

a creed

is a-vju^oXov

or pass-word.

Sometimes the baptized received the communion

at once after baptism, just as those

who had been

initiated

at Eleusis

proceeded at once

after a

day's fast

to

drink of the mystic kukewv and to eat of the sacred cakes.


(7)

The baptized were sometimes crowned with a


until

garland, as the initiated wore a mystic crown at Eleusis.

The usage was local, but lasted at Alexandria modern times. It is mentioned by Vansleb.^
((?)

Just as the divinities watched the initiation from

out of the blaze of light, so Chrysostom pictures Christian

baptism in the blaze of Easter-eve


1

and Cyril describes


s.

See

p.

293, note

also
p.

Did. Christian Antiquities,

vv. Baptism,

Catechumens, especially
2

318, and Creed.

Histoire de I'eglise d' Alexandrie, p. 12: Paris, 1677.

De

haptismo Christi,

4.

ii.

374, rouXptcrToC irapovTos, rdv dyyeXoJV

Trape(TTioT(x)v, tt/? (fipiKrrjs

raiWi]? TpaTre^ifs TrpoKetfievq^, tcjv

aSeA^wv avv

fj.v(j-Tayoiyovp.eyo}v tVi.

Cyril, Prcefatio

ad Catech.

15.

UPON CHRISTIAN USAGES.

299

the white-robecl band of the baptized approaching the

doors of the church where the lights turned darkness


into day.
(e)

Baptism was administered, not

at

any place or

time,

but only in the great churches, and only as a

rule once a year

on

Easter-eve, though Pentecost

also a recognized season.

was The primitive " See here is


to

water,

what doth hinder me


which

be baptized?" passed

into a ritual

at every turn recalls the ritual of the

mysteries.

I will abridge the account

which

is

given of

the practice at

Eome

so late as the ninth century.^

Pre-

paration went on through the greater part of Lent.


candidates were examined and tested
:

The
they

they fasted

received the secret symbols, the Creed and the Lord's

Prayer.
afternoon,

On

Easter-eve, as the day declined towards


St.

they assembled in the church of

John

Lateran.

The

rites of

exorcism and renunciation were


rituals survive.

gone through in solemn form, and the

The Pope and


Pope then
there
is

his priests

come

forth in their sacred vest-

ments, with lights carried in front of them, which the


blesses
:

there is a reading of lessons and a

singing of psalms.

And

then, while they chant a litany,

a procession to the great bath of baptism, and the

water

is blessed.

The baptized come forth from the water,


Pope

are signed with the cross, and are presented to the

one by one, who vests them in a white robe and signs


their foreheads again with the cross.

They

are arranged

in a great

circle,

and each

of

them
;

carries a light.

Then
It

a vast array of

lights is kindled

the blaze of them, says

a Greek Father, makes night continuous with dawn.


1

Mabillon, Com. prcBV. ad. ord. Rom.;

Musceum

Ital. II. xcix.

300
is

THE INFI<UENCE OF THE MYSTERIES

the beginning of a

new

life.

The mass

is

celebrated

the mystic offering on the Cross is reiDresented in figure

but for the newly baptized the chalice

is filled,

not with

wine, but with milk and honey, that they

may imderstand,
upon
more symbolical

says an old writer, that they have entered already

the promised land.


rite in that early
is

And

there was one

Easter sacrament, the mention of which

often suppressed

a lamb

was

offered on the altar


It

afterwards cakes in the shape of a lamb.^

was simply
and

the ritual which

we have

seen abeady in the mysteries.

The

purified

crowd

at Eleusis

saw a blaze

of light,

in the light were represented in symbol

life

and death

and resurrection.
2.

Baptism had

felt

the spell of the Greek ritual:


Its elements in the

not less so had the Lord's Supper.


earliest times

may be

gathered altogether apart from the Testament, upon which, however

passages of the
clearly

New
feel,

we may

no sensible

man will found an

argu-

ment, and which, taken by

themselves, possibly admit of

more than one meaning.

The

extra-biblical accounts are

(1) " The

Teachmg

; of the Apostles "

which implies
servant,

(a) Thanksgiving for the wine.

"

We thank Thee, our


which
Christ

Father, for the holy vine of

David Thy

Thou
(b)

hast

Servant.

made known to us through Jesus To Thee be glory for ever."


life

Thy

Thanksgiving for the broken bread.

"We thank

Thee, our Father, for the


1

which Thou hast made

It Avas

one of the points ii which the Greeks objected in the dia-

russions of the nintli century,


3
c.

9.

UPON CHRISTIAN USAGES.

301

known

to us

through Jesus Thy Servant.

To Thee be
none

glory for ever."

After the thanksgiving they ate and drank:

could eat or drink until he had been baptized into the

name

of

the

Lord.

After the partaking there was

another thanksgiving and a prayer of supplication.


(2) There is a fragmentary account

which has been

singularly overlooked, in the Apostolical Constitutions,^

which

carries us

one stage further.

After the reading

and the teaching, the deacon made a proclamation which


vividly recalls the proclamation at the beginning of the Mysteries. " Is there any one

who has

a quarrel with
(ev viroKpia-ei'^?

any?
(3)

Is there

any one with bad feeling"


stage
is

The next

found in the same book of the

Apostolical Constitutions.^
fact that the

The advance

consists in the
out, just as

catechumens and penitents go

those

who were

not yet initiated and those

who were

impure were excluded from the Greek Mysteries.


This marked separation of the catechumens and the
baptized,

which was possibly strengthened by the


oi irpoKoirrovTeq
it

philo-

sophic distinction between


lasted until,

and

ol reXeioij

under influences which

would be beyond
exist.^

our present purpose to discuss, the prevalence of infant

baptism caused the distinction no longer to


1

Bk.
viii.

ii.

57, p. 87:

cf. viii. 5, p.

239, lines 18, 19.

11. 12, p. 248.


c.

Origen,

Cels. 3. 59.

Persons

who have partaken


ad Demet.
c.

of the Eucha6.
i.

rist are ot reAecr^evTes

(Chrys. de compunct.

1.

p. 132),

and

ot ixeixvq[j.voi (id.
x.,

Ho7n.

vi.

de

beat. Phil.
4,

3.

i.

p.

498, and in

Ep. ad Hehr. cap.


distinctions

Horn. xvii.

vol.

xii.

169).

Degrees and

came

to be recognized within the circle of the very initiated


vii.

themselves, Aposi. Const,

44,

viii.

13.

o02

X.

THE INFLUENCE OF THE MYSTERIES

(4) In a later stage there is a mention of the holy


table as

an

altar,

and

of the offerings placed

npon the
later

table of
(a)

which the

faithful partook, as mysteries.^


of the table as

The conception

an altar

is

than the middle of the second century.^


the Apostolic Fathers of the Jewish
altar.

It is nsed in
It is

used

by Ignatius
phorically.^

in
It

Christian sense, but

always meta-

may be
ii.)

noted that though the Apostolic


Oua-la^

Constitutions (Bk.
of a
Qva-iaa-rripiov.^

speak of a

they do not speak

This use of

Oucriaa-Tijpiov is

probably

not earlier than Eusebius.^


(b)

The conception
;

of the elements as
it

/jLva-ryjpia is

even
like

later

but once established,

became permanent,

the Latin term " sacramentum."


^ The earlier offerings were those of Irenasus, 4. 17. 5, where he speaks of Christ " suis discipulis dans consilium, primitias Deo offerre ex suis creaturis ;" and again the Church ofTers " primitias suorum

munerum
offerings
:

in

Novo Testamento

ei

qui alimenta nobis prsestat."


it

The
118.

table in the heathen temple

was important ; upon


cf.

were placed the


p,

Th, Homolle in Bulletin de Corresp. Hellen. 1881,


itself as a
i.

For the Eucharist


de sacerdot.
3.

mystery,

^piKwSca-TaTry tcAct^, Chrys.

4, vol.

382.

He
7,

argues for silence on the ground


ii.

that they are mysteries, de hapt. Christ. 4.


Orat. 44, p.
2

375.

Cf. Greg. Naz.

713

Cone. Laod.

Bruns,

p. 74.
ii.

Found
;

in Chrys. e.g. Horn, in Ep.

ad

Corinth, v.
(T<f)ayrj.

c.

3, vol. x.

470
^

TOLavTr) to dvaiacrTripLOv iKetvo (f)oivi(T(reTaL

Ad

Ephes. 5
2.
ii.

see Lightfoot's note.

Cf.

Trcdl. 7

Philad. 4

Mag. 7; Rom.
*

Ap. Const,

57, p. 88.
6, iv. 3.

But

see for ^vo-no-Trjioiov in a highly

figurative sense,
5

iii.

//.

E.

X. 4, 44.

Isid. Pelus. Epist. 3. 340, p. 390, Trpo(r?]X9e /xv


Tujv
dLO)v ixv(rT-i]piu)v fJ.TaXy]\f6iJ.vo<s io-Oai fLvaTi'jpLa.
;

ry

o-eTrTol ^txriaor-

Trjpito

also 4. 181, p. 516,

ra
L

Bilu

fjLv

50

Cf. Chrys. de comp.

ad Demet.

1. 6, vol.

UPON CHRISTIAN USAGES.


(5)

303

The conception of a priest into which I will not now enter was certainly strengthened by the mysteries

and

associations.
full

The

development or translation of the idea

is

found in the great mystical writer of the end


century, in
in terms

of the fifth

whom

every Christian ordinance

is

expressed

which are applicable only

to the mysteries.
is

The

extreme tendency which he shows

perhaps personal to

him; but he was


influence on the

in sympathy with his time, and his Church of the after-time must count

for a large factor in the history of Christian thought.

There are few Catholic


do not enter. ^

treatises

on the Eucharist and few

Catholic manuals of devotion into which his conceptions

I will here quote his description of the


itself
this.
:

Communion

"All the other initiations are incomplete without

The consummation and crown

of all the rest is

p.

dial. 2, vol. iv. 125. There was a sacred formula. no saint has written down the formula of consecration After saying that some docde Spir. Sando, 66, vol. iv. pp. 54, 55. trines and usages of the Church have come down in writing, ra Se Ik

131; Theodore t,

Basil says that

Tijs Tcuv

aTTOCToAwv TTapaSocTews StaSoPevra

rjixiv

iv fJLVcrTrjpio) TrapeSe^a-

fieda,

he instances the words of the Eucharistic invocation


;

as

among

the latter

ra

rijs iTriK\rj(TU}<; p-qfiara

ctti

ry avaSet^ei tov apTOv t^s

kvyapL(TTias xal tov TTOTrjpiov ttjs evAoytas Tis twv dytojv eyypd(po}<s
rjfiLV
1

KaraAeAotTrev.

In Dionysius Areop.

(s. v.

lepapx-q^, ed.

Corderius,

i.

839), the

bishops are xeAecrTai, leporeAecrTai, TeAco-Tapi^at, p.v(jray(ayoi, xeAecrTovpyoi, TeXecTTLKoi; the priests are c^wTtcrTiKoi
TiKoi',
;

the deacons, KaOap-

the Eucharist

OatpeL Tovs areAecTTovs (c. 5, 3, p. 233),

the priest,

hand into

The deacon, diroKathem in the water; ^WTaywye? tovs KadapOevTas, i.e. leads the baptized by the the church; the bishop, aTroTeAeio? tovs t^ dtL(^ ^ojtj
is

teporeXearTiKiOTaTr] (c. 4).


i.e.

dips

KeKoiva)y7^xoTas.

304

X.

THE INFLUENCE OF THE MASTERIES

the participation of
mysteries.

him who
it

is

initiated in the thearchio

For though

be the

common

characteristic

of all the hierarchic acts to

make

the initiated partakers

of the divine light, yet this alone imparted to


vision through

me

the

whose mystic

light,

as

it

were, I

am

guided

to the

contemplation

(e7ro\//-/av)

of the other sacred

things."

The

ritual is then described.

and

the cup of blessing are placed


(^lepdp-^tjg)

upon the

The sacred bread " Then altar.


prayer
after all

the sacred hierarch

initiates the sacred


:

and announces
completed.

to all the holy peace

and

have
lists

saluted each other, the mystic recital of the sacred


is

The hierarch and the

priests

wash

their

hands in water; he stands in the midst


altar,

of the divine

and around him stand the

priests

and the chosen

ministers.

The

hierarcli sings the praises of the divine

working and consecrates the most divine mysteries,


{iepovpyel

ra Oeiorara)^ and by means of the symbols


set forth,

which are sacredly


has shown the

he brings into open vision

the things of which he sings the praises.


gifts of the divine

And when he

working, he himself

comes into a sacred communion with them, and then


invites the rest.

And

having both partaken and given

to the others a share in the thearchic

communion, he
he himself,

ends with a sacred thanksgiving

and while the people


only,

bend over what are divine symbols


always by the thearchic
spirit, is

led in a priestly

man-

ner, in purity of his godlike


rrjg OeoeiSovs ejecof),

frame of mind

(ev KaOaporriTL

through blosscd and spiritual contem-

^ plation, to the holy realities of the mysteries."

Dion. Arcop. Ecclcs.

Ilicr.

c.

3, par. 1, 1, 2, pp.

187, 188.

UPON CHRISTIAN USAGES.

305
elements -the

Once again
tices

must point out that

tlio

conceptions which he has added to the primitive prac-

are
:

identical with those in the mysteries.

The

tendency which he represented grew: the Eucharistic


sacrifice

came

in the East to be celebrated behind closed

doors

the breaking of bread from house to house was


so

changed into

awful a mystery that none but the


it.

hierophant himself might see

The

idea of prayer

and thought as offerings was preserved by the NeoPlatonists.

There are two minor points which, though


are less certain and also less important,
likely that the use of Siwrvxci.

interesting,

(a) It

seems

benefactors or departed saints

was

tablets

commemorating

a continuation of
(b)

a similar usage of the religious associations.^


blaze of lights at mysteries

The

may have

suggested the use

of lights at the Lord's Supper.^


It

seems

fair

to

infer that, since there

were great

changes in the

ritual of the sacraments,

and since the

new

elements of these changes were identical with ele-

ments that already existed in cognate and largely diffused


forms of worship, the one should be due to the other.
This inference
is

strengthened

when we

find that the

Christian communities which were nearest in form and


spirit to the

Hellenic culture, were the

first

in

which

among

For in the decree mentioned in a previous note (p, 292, n. 2), other honours to T. .^Elius Alcibiades, he is to be irpQiTov tois
evypa^oyLievov.

St7rTz;;)(0ts
2

Cf. for the use of lights in worship, the

money

accounts, from a

Berlin papyrus, of the temple of Jupiter Capitolinus at Arsinoe, A.t;


215, in Hermes, Ed. xx. p. 430.

30
these

X.

THE INFLUENCE OF THE MYSTERIES

elements appear, and also those in which they

assumed the strongest form. Such were the Valentinians,


of

whom
SM

Tertullian expressly speaks in this connection.^


of

We read
had
life to

Simon Magus that he taught that baptism


efficacy as to give

supreme an
all

by

itself eternal
^co^?

who were

baptized.

The
it

Xovrpov

was

expanded

to its full extent,

and

was even thought that


fire
it.

to the water of baptism

was added a

which came

from heaven upon

all

who

entered into

Some even

introduced a second baptism.^

So also the Marcosians and some Yalentinian schools


believed in a baptism that was an absolute sundering of

the baptized from the corrujDtible world and an emancipation into a perfect and eternal
life.

Similarly,

some

other schools added to the simple initiation rites of a less

noble and more sensuous order.^


It

was but the


is

old belief in the effect of the mysteries

thi'own into a Christian form.


school

So also another Gnostic

said to have not only treated the truths of

Christianity as sacred, but also to have felt about

them

what the
mysteries

" I swear by Him who

initiated

were supposed

to
is

feel

about the
all,

above

by the

Hippolytus (1, prooem; 5. 23, 24) says the 1. had mysteries which they disclosed to the initiated only after long preparation, and with an oath not to divulge them so the I^aassenes, 5. 8, and the Peratse, 5. 17 (ad fin.), whose mysteries "are delivered in silence." The Justinians had an oath of secrecy before proceeding to behold "what eye hath not seen" and "drinking from the living water," 5. 27.
1

Adv. Valent.

heretics

E.g. Marcus, in connection with initiation into the higher mysteries,


G.

Hipp.
^

41,

and the Elkasaites as cleansing from gross

sin, 9. 15.

Eus.

II, E. iv. 7.

UPON CHRISTIAN USAGES.

307

Good One,
to no

to

keep these mysteries and to reveal them


after that oath each

one;" and
of

seemed

to feel the

power

God

to

be upon him, as

it

were the password

of entrance into the highest mysteries.^

As

soon as the

oath had been taken, he sees what no eye has seen, and
hears what no ear has heard, and drinks of the living

water

which
it is

is

their baptism, as they think, a spring

of water springing

up within them

to everlasting life.

Again,

probably through the Gnostics that the


Ter-

period of preparation for baptism was prolonged.

tullian says of the Yalentinians that their period of pro-

bation

is

longer than their period of baptized

life,

which

is precisely

what happened

in the

Greek practice of the

fourth century.

The general

inference of the large influence of the


is

Gnostics on baptism,

confirmed by the fact that another


its

element, which certainly came through them, though


source
is

not certain and

is

more

likely to

have been
There were

Oriental than Greek, has maintained a permanent place


in most rituals

the element

of anointing.

two customs
the
oil of

in this matter, one

more

characteristic of

the East, the other of the

West

the anointing with


oil of

(1)

exorcism before baptism and after the renun-

ciation of the devil,

and (2) the


bishop,

thanksgiving,

which was used immediately


presbyter and then

after baptism, first

by the
of the

by the

who then

sealed the

candidate on the forehead.

The very variety

custom shows how deep and yet natural the action of


the Gnostic systems, with the mystic and magic customs
2

Hipp.

5. 27, of

the Justiuians.

Cf. Hilgenfeld, Ketzergesch. p. 270.

x2

30S

X.

THE INFLUENCE OF THE MY5TERIES

of the Gnostic societies or associations,

had been on the

practices

and ceremonies

of the Church.^

But beyond matters


to realize the

of practice,

it

is

among the

Gnostics that there appears for the

first

time an attempt

change of the elements to the material


Christ.

body and blood of


regarded
is

The

fact that they

were so

found in Justin Martyr.^

But

at the

same

time, that the change

was not vividly

realized, is

proved

by the
for

fact that, instead of

being regarded as too awful

men

to touch, the elements


to their

were taken by the com-

municants

on their

travels.

homes and carried about with them But we read of Marcus that in his

realistic conception of the Eucharistic service the white

For the Eastern custom, see Cyril Hier. Catech. Myst. ii. 3, 4, 312: the candidate is anointed all over hefore baptism with exorcised oil, which, by invocation of God and prayer, purities from the burning traces of sin, but also puts to flight the invisible powers of
1

p.

the evil one.


Constitutions,

Cf. Apost.
c.

Const, vii. 22, 41,

iii.

15,

16; the Coptic

46

(ed.

Tattam),

cf.

Boetticher's Gr. translation in


3.

Bunsen's Anal. Ante-Nic. ii 467; Clem. Recog.


6. 4,

67; Chrys. Horn.


cis

in Ep.

ad

Col. xi. 342, dAet^erai

(ixnrep ot
all

dOXrjTal
;

a-ToiSiov

e[xf37]cr6[ji.evoL,

here also before baptism and


;

over

Dionys. Areop.

Eccles. Hicr. 2. 7

Basil, de Spir.

Western
hapt. 6

as distinct
;

Sand. 66, vol. iv. 55. For earlier from Eastern thought on the subject, cf. Tert. de

and 7 de resiirr. carnis. 8; adv. Marc. i. 14; Cyprian, JEjh For the later Western usage, introduced from the East, see Cone. Bom. 402, c. 8, ed. Bruns. pt. ii. 278 Ordo 6, ad fac. Catech. in Martene, de ant. eccl. rit. i. p. 17; Theodulfus Aurel. deord. hapt. 10; unction of the region of the heart before and behind, symbolizing the Holy Spirit's unction with a view to both prosperity and adversity Catechumens (Sirmond, vol. ii. 686) Isid. Hisp. de off. eccl. 2. 21 exorcizantur, sales acci]_nunt et uiujuntur, the salt being made tit eorum
70.
; ; ;

gustu condimentum sap)ientice percipiant, neque desipiant a sapore Christi


(]Migne, Ixxxiii. col. 814, SI 5); Ca?s. Arclat. scrm. 22.
2

Apol.

1.

66.

UPON CHRISTIAN FSAGES.


wine actually turned

309

to the colour of blood before the

eyes of the communicants.^

Thus the whole conception


changed. 2

of Christian

worship was

But

it

was changed by the influence upon

Christian worship of the contemporary worship of the

mysteries and the concurrent cults.

The tendency

to

an

elaborate ceremonial
of

which had produced the magnifaith

ficence

those

mysteries and cults, and which had

combined with the love of a purer

and the tendency

towards fellowship, was based upon a tendency of


nature which was not crushed by Christianity.
to a

human
It rose
it

new

life,

and though
life still.

it

lives only

by a

survival,

lives that

new

In the splendid ceremonial

of

Eastern and "Western worship, in the blaze of

lights, in

the separation of the central point of the rite from com-

mon

view, in the procession of torch-bearers chanting

their sacred

hymns

there

is

the survival, and in some

cases the galvanized survival, of

what
;

I cannot find

it

in
it

my

heart to call a pagan ceremonial

because though
it

was the expression


offered to
its

of a less enlightened faith, yet

was
than

search for

God from a heart that was God and in its efiort

not less earnest in


after holiness

our
1

own.
ap.

Hipp.

6.

39.
2,

* Tert.

ad Sca^.

holds that sacrifice

may

consist of simple prayer.

Lecttjee XI.

THE INCOEPOEATIOlSr OF CHEISTIAN IDEAS, AS MODIFIED BY GEEEK, INTO A BODY OF DOCTEINE.

The
to

object

which

have in view in this Lecture

is

show the

transition

by which, under the

influence of
to-

contemporary Greek thought, the word Faith came

be transferred from simple trust in God to mean

the-

acceptance of a series of propositions, and these propositions, propositions in abstract

metaphysics.

The Greek words which designate


and primarily trust in a person.

belief or faith are


trust,

used in the Old Testament chiefly in the sense of

They expressed conThey implied

fidence in his goodness, his veracity, his uprightness.

They

are as

much moral
of character.

as intellectual.

an estimate

Their use in application to

God was not different from their use in application to men. Abraham trusted God. The Israelites also trusted God when they saw the Egyptians dead upon the seaIn the first instance there was just so much of shore.
intellectual assent involved in belief, that to believe God.

involved an assent to the proposition that

God

exists.

XI.

THE INCORPORATION OF CHRISTIAN IDEAS.

311

But

this

element was latent and implied rather than


It is not difficult to see

conscious and expressed.

how,

when this
it

proposition

should lead to other propositions.

came to be conscious and expressed, The analysis of

belief led to the construction of other propositions besides

the bare original proposition that


trust

God ?

good, or just.

God is. "Why do I The answer was Because He is wise, or The propositions followed I believe that
: :

God is wise, that He is good, that He is just. Belief in God came to mean the assent to certain propositions
about God.^

In Greek philosophy the words were used rather


intellectual conviction

of

than of moral

trust,

and of the

higher rather than of the lower forms of conviction.


Aristotle distinguishes faith

from impression

for a

man,
it.

he

says,

may have an
it

impression and not be sure of

He

uses

both of the convictions that come through the

senses and of those that

come through
to

reason.

There

is

in Philo a special application of this philo-

sophical use,

which led

even more important


it is

results.

He

blends the sense in which


is

found in the Old

Testament with that which

found in Greek philosophy.

The mass of men, he says, trust their senses or their The good man trusts God. Just as the mass reason.
of

men

believe that their senses and their reason do not

deceive them, so the latter believes that

God

does not

deceive him.

the occasions on which


rare,

God was to trust His veracity. But God spoke directly to a man were and what He said when He so spoke commanded
To
trust

an unquestioning acceptance.
1

He more commonly
c.

spoke

Cf. Celsus' idea of faith

Orig.

Cels. 3.

39

Keim,

p. 39.

312
to

Xr.

THE INCORPORATION OF CHRISTIAN IDEAS


the agency of messengers.

men through

His angels

spoke to men, sometimes in visions of the night, sometimes in open manifestation by day.
to

His prophets spoke

men.

To

believe God, implied a belief in

what

He

said indirectly as well as directly.

It implied the acceptis to

ance of what His prophets said, that

say, of

what

they were recorded to have said in the Holy "Writings.


Belief in this sense
is

not a vague and mystical senti-

ment, the hazy state of mind which precedes knowledge,

but the highest form of conviction.


in certainty.

It transcends reason

It is the full assurance that certain things

are so, because

God

has said that they are

so.^

In

this

connection

we may

note the

way

in

which

the Christian communities were helped by the current


reaction against pure speculation
tainty.

the longing

for cer-

The mass
certainty.

of

men were

sick of theories.

They

wanted

teachers
i

The current teaching of the Christian gave them certainty. It appealed to definite
their predecessors
life

facts of

which

were eye-witnesses. Its

simple tradition of the


of Jesus Christ of
/

and death and resurrection


basis for the satisfaction

was a necessary
but

men's needs.

Philosophy and poetry might be built


;

upon that

tradition

if

the tradition were shown to

be only cloudland, Christian philosophy was no more


than Stoicism.

"We have thus


faith passed

to see

how, under the new conditions,


stage, or simple trust in a

beyond the moral

person, to the metaphysical stage, or belief in certain

propositions or technical definitions concerning


^

Him, His

Philo's view of faith


rer. div.

is
i.

well expressed in two striking passages,


46,
ii.

Quis

Hcres, 18,

485; and de Ahrah.

39.

INTO A BODY OF DOCTEINE.


nature, relations and actions.

313

In

this latter

we may

distinguish two correlated and interdependent phases or

forms of

belief, the

one more intellectual and

logical, the

other more historical and concrete, namely, (1) the conviction that
attributes
;

God being

of a certain nature has certain

(2) the conviction that,

God being

true, the

statements which

He makes

through His prophets and

The one of these forms of belief was elaborated into what we know as the Creed; the other, into the Canon of the New Testament.
ministers are also true.^

We

shall first deal

with these phases or forms of belief,

and then with the process by which the metaphysical


definitions
1.

became
first

authoritative.

In the

instance the intellectual element of


to the ethical

belief

was subordinated
Belief

purpose of the
itself

religion.
itself,

was not

insisted

upon in

and for

but as the ground of moral reformation.

The main

content of the belief was "that


their sins

men

are punished for

and honoured

for their

good deeds i"^ the


belief that

ground

of this conviction

was the underlying

God

is,

and that

He

rewards and punishes.

The

feature

which differentiated Christianity from philosophy was,


^

Cf.
is

He
is
-

of

God must believe that He is, and that them that seek Him," Heb. xi. 6 ; and " He that God heareth God's words," John viii. 47.
that cometh to
a rewarder of

"

He

was one of Celsus' objections to Christianity that its preachers more stress on belief than on the intellectual grounds of belief Orig, c. Cels. 1. 9. Origen's answer, which is characteristic rather of
It

laid

his
this

own time than


was necessary

expressive of the belief of the apostolic age,


for the

is

that

mass of men, who have no leisure or inclination for deep investigation (1. 10), and in order not to leave men altogether without help (1. 12).

314

XI.

THE INCORPORATION OF CHRISTIAN IDEAS

that this belief as to the nature of


certain

by a

revelation.

was

salvation

degrees stress

God had been made The purpose of the revelation regeneration and amendment of life. By came to be laid on this underlying element.
had not only made some propositions
it

The
tain

revelation

cer-

which hitherto had been only speculative,

had also

added new propositions, assertions


differentiating belief.

of its distinctive or

the narrowest limits,

But it is uncertain, except within what those assertions were. There

are several phrases in the


apostolic writings

New

Testament and in sub-

elementary statements or rule.^


tain or

some But none of them conexpress a recognized standard. Yet the standard
like references to

which read

may be
in

gathered partly from the formula of admission

into the Christian

community, partly from the formulae


to Grod.

which praise was ascribed


its

The most imporis

tant of these, in view of

subsequent history,
uncertain
is
;

the

former.

at least in

But the formula two main forms.

is itself

it

existed

There

evidence to show

that the injunction to baptize in the

name

of the three
last

Persons of the Trinity, which


of St.

is

found in the
It is

chapter

Matthew, was observed.^

the formula in the


is also

Teaching of the Apostles.^


side
^

But

there

evidence,
of the

by

side with this evidence as to the use

E.g.

Rom.

vi. 17,

els
;

ov TrapeSo^r^re tittov
2 Tim.
;

8tSa;;^^s

2 John, 9, iv

TTj

SiBa'^ij

Tou XpicTTOu
e'/xou

i.

13, vTrorvirwariv iy^e tiytaivovTWv


vi. 12,

Adywv

(OV Trap

T^Kovcras

Tim.

tu/toAoyi^cras

rijv

KaXrjv

ojxokoyLav;
ap. Eus.

Jude

3,

i)

ajra^ TrapaSoOeicra tois dyiots Trtcms.


:

Polycrates,

H. E. 5. 24, 6 Kavwv t?}s Trto-rews see passages collected ia Gebhardt and Harnack's Patres Apost. Bd. i. th. 2 (Barnabas), p. 133.
2
3

Cf.
c.

Schmid, Dogmeng.

p. 14,

Das Taufsymbol.

7. 4.

INTO A BODY OF DOCTRINE.


Trinitarian formula, of baptism into the
or into the death of Christ.^

315
of Christ,

name
which

The next element


as to

in the uncertainty

exists is

how

far the formula, either in the one case or the


to involve the assent to

other,

was conceived

any other

propositions except those of the existence of the divine

Persons or Person mentioned in the formula.


assent

Even

this

was implied rather than


of Jesus Christ

explicit.

It is in the

Apologists that the transition from the implicit was made.

The teaching
became

especially in Justin Martyr.^


explicit is
of

of

them important, by which it great importance, but we have


became
to

The

step

no means
is

knowing when
it

or

how

it

was made.^

It

conceivable that

was

first

made

homiletically, in

the course of exhortation to Christian duty.^


intellectual contents of the formula did

When
its

the

become

explicit,

the formula became a

test.

Concurrently with

use as

a standard or test of belief, was probably the incorporation in


it of so

much

of Christian teaching as referred

to the facts of the life of Jesus Christ.

But the
and

facts

were capable
^

of different interpretations,
16, xix. 5,

different
vi. 1

See Acts
xxii. 16.

viii.

with which compare Eom.


eis

11,
',

Acts

Didaclie, 9. 5, ol /JaTrTto-^evres
ii.

ovo/ia

Kvpiov

and
ol

Apost. Const. Bk.


l^vptov
Irjcrov

7,

p.

20, ot jSaTma-OevTes els Tov ddvarov rov

ovk

offteiXovcriv

afxapTaveiv ol

roiovroC

ws

yap

aTTO^avovTes dvevepy^jroi Trpos afiapTiav uTrap^ovcrtv, ovrois Kal ol avvaTTO^avovres

tw XptcrTW airpaKTOi

Trpo? afxapriav

cf.

148. 7, and else-

where, in composite form.

Against this Cyprian wrote, in Up. 73,

ad Juhaianum, 16
2

18

cf.

Harnack, Dogmeng. 176.


p.

Cf.
Cf.

von Engelhardt, Das Christenthum Justins,


Harnack, Dogmeng.
p.

107.

'

130

ff.

* Cf.

Clement's account of Basilides' conception of faith in contrast


5. 1.

to his

own, Strom.

316

XI.

THE INCORPORATION OF CHRISTIAN IDEAS

propositions might be based


instance,

upon them.

In the

first

speculation

was

free.

Different facts had a


facts of the life

different significance.

The same

were

interpreted in different ways.

There was an agreement

as to the main principle that the Chi'istian societies were


societies for the

amendment

of life.

It is

an almost ideal

picture

which the heathen Celsus draws

of the Christians

differing widely as to their speculations,

and yet

all

agreeing to say,

"The world
^

is

crucified to me,

and I

unto the world."


partly

The

influence of

Greek thought,

by the

allegorizing of history, partly

struction of great superstructures of

by the conspeculation upon

slender bases,

made

the original standard too elastic to

serve as the basis and bond of Christian society.


theories were added to fact, different theories

When
impor
certain

were added.

It

is

at this point that the fact

became

of special

tance that the Gospel had been preached


persons,

by

and that
It

its

content was the content of that

was not a philosophy which successive generations might modify. It went back to the definite
preaching.

teaching of a historical person.

It It

was

of importance to
to recog-

be sure what that teaching was.


interpretation of Christ's.

was agreed

nize apostolic teaching as the authoritative vehicle

and
it.^

All parties appealed to

But there had been more than one apostle. The teaching was consequently that, not of one person, but of many. Here was the main point of dispute. All parties
within the Church agreed as to the need of a tribunal,

but each party had


>

its

own.

Each made

its

appeal to a

Orig.

c.

Cels. 5. 65.
c,

Cf. PtolemK?us ad Floram,

7, ed.

Pot

INTO A BODY OF DOCTRINE.


different apostle.

317

But

since,

though many in number,

they were teachers, not of their

own

opinions, but of the

doctrine which they had received from Jesus Christ, the

more orthodox
to lay stress

or Catholic tendency

found

it

necessary

upon

their unity.

the plural,

ol aTroa-roXoiA

They were spoken of in While the Gnostics built upon

one apostle or another, ^ the Catholics built upon an


apostolic

consensus.

Their tradition was not that of

Peter or of James, but of the twelve apostles.

The

ttIo-ti?

was
It

airoa-ToXiKTjj

an attribute which implies a uniform

tradition.^

was

at this point that organization


:

and confederation
^

became important
were regarded

the bishops of the several churches


:

as the conservators of the tradition

while
to a

the bishops of the apostolic churches settled


^

down

See instances in Harn. Dogm.

p.

134.

Thus

Basilides, ap. Hippol. 7. 20, preferred to follow a tradition


to

from Matthias, who was said


Saviour.

have been specially instructed by the


7.

The

^Naassenes, ib. 10. 9, traced their doctrine to James, the

Brother of the Lord.


to

Valentinus, Clem. Alex. Strom.

17,

was said

be a hearer of Theudas,
all

who was

a pupil of Paul.

Hippol. l,^)rocemy

argued against
Scripture,
e.

heretics that they

had taken nothing from Holy


ScaSo-^rjv.

and had not preserved the rtvos ayiov


21.

Cf. Tert.

Marc.

1.

But

see the very remarkable statement of Origen as


c.

to the cause of heresies,


2

Cels. 3.

12

cf.

Clem. Al. Strom.


.

7. 17.

Cf.

Clem. Alex. Strom.


2^'>'cssc.

7. 17, fiia

TrapdSocris,

tion of Tert. de

hcer.

32, Sicut apostoli

and the contennon diversa inter se


;

docuissent, ita et apostolici

non

contraria apostolis edidissent

pp. 133

ff.,

especially note 2, pp.

134

136.

Harnack,
4. 7.

Eusebius, H. E.
writers

mentions that very


behalf
ttJs

many contemporary church

had written in

aTrocrToXiKrjs /cat eKKAi^o-tacTTtKTjs 6o^?js,

against Basilides,

especially Agrippa Castor.


^

Adamantius (Origen,

ed. Delarue,

i.

809) says that the Marcion-

Xtes

had iTna-Ko-wv, juaAAov

Se ipevSen-ccrKOTruyv 8ia^o)(^a.[.

318

XI.

THE INCORPORATION OP CHRISTIAN IDEAS

general agreement as to the terms of the apostolic tradition.^

In distinction from the Gnostic standards, there


to

came

be a standard which the majority


in the

of the

churches

the middle party


uncertain

Church

accepted.
But
it is

It is quite

when

the rule came to be generally accepted,


it

or in what form

was accepted.

in the

main

preserved for us

with undoubtedly

later accretions

in

the Apostles' Creed.


rule
is

Tertullian's contention is that this

not only apostolic and binding, but also adequate


representation of apostolic teaching
it.^

a complete
the

that
sense,

there were no necessary truths outside

The

additions

were made by the gradual working

of the

common

common

consciousness, of the Christian world.

They

were approved by the majority; they were accepted by


the sees which claimed to have been founded by the
apostles.

The

earliest

form

is

that

which may be gathered

from several writers as having been generally accepted in

Eome and the West it is a bare statement. " I believe in God Almighty, and in Jesus Christ His Son our Lord, who was born of a virgin, crucified under Pontius Pilate,
:

the third day rose again from the dead, sitteth on the
right

hand

of the Father,

from whence he
;

is

coming

to

judge the living and dead

and in the Holy Spirit." The term Son came to be qualified in very early times by "only begotten;" and after "the Holy Spirit," "the
^

For the TrapdSocns


prcef. 2

iKKXyjo-LacrTiKrj,
hcer.
cc.

especially of "ecclesire apos-

tolicse," cf. Tert.

de 2^r^sc.
for the

21.

36;

Iren. 3. 1

3;

Orig. de

princ.

4; Tert. adv. Marc. 1. 21 (regula sacramenti) ; de Virg. vel. 1; adv. Prax. 2; depmsc. hcer. cc. 3. 12. 42; di monog. 2. In general, see Weingarten, Zdttafeln^
;
:

KavMv t^?

iria-Tews, Iren, 1, 9.

6.

17. 19.
2

De

prcBsc.

Iicbt. cc.

25. 26.

INTO A BODY OF DOCTRINE.

319

Holy Church, the remission


of the flesh,"

of sins,

and the resurrection

were added.
side with this question of the standard or
of traditional teaching,

2. Side

by

authentic

minimum
it

and growing
of

necessarily with

and out

of

it,

was the question

the sources from which that teaching could be drawn,

and
been

of the materials

by which the standard might be

interpreted.
oral.

The greater part of apostolic teaching had The tradition was mostly oral. But as the

generations of
age,

men

receded farther from the apostolic

and

as the oral tradition


it

which was delivered came

necessarily to vary,

became more and more uncertain

what was the true form and content of the tradition. Written records came to be of more importance than
oral tradition.

They had

at first

only the authority

which attached to tradition.


ment.

Their elevation to an inde-

pendent rank was due to the influence of the Old Testa-

There had been already a

series of revelations of

Ood

to

men, which having once been

oral

had become

written.

The

revelation

consisted of

what was then

known

as the Scriptures,

and what we now know as the

Old Testament.
a large extent in

The
its

proofs of Christianity consisted to

consonance with those Scriptures.

But the term Holy


is

Scriptures

was

less strictly

used than

The hedge round them had gaps, and there were patches lying outside what has It was partly the indefinitesince come to be its line. ness of the Old Testament canon which caused the
sometimes supposed.

term Scripture
apostolic age.

to

be applied to some writings of the


question, "Which writings ?

But the

was

320

XI.

THE INCORPORATION OF CHRISTIAN IDEAS

only answered gradually.


only gradually passed away.
for the reception
of the

The
It

spirit of

prophecy had

was the common ground

Old Testament and the

New

Testament; as the
both,
it

spirit of

prophecy was common to

was but natural that both should have the same

attributes.

But prophecy was not


ypacpr)) is

in the first instance

conceived as having suddenly ceased in the Church.

The

term Scripture

(?

applied to the Shepherd of


delimitation of the

Hermas by

IrenaGus.^

The

body of

writings that could be so denoted was connected with the


necessity of being sui*e about the apostolical teaching

the

TTapa^oa-i's.^

The term

Scripture

was applied

to the

recorded sayings of Jesus Christ (the Xo'ym) without

demur.^ It came to be applied also to the records which


the apostles had left of the facts of the
life of Christ.

Then,

finally, it

tended more gradually to be applied to

the writings of the apostles and of apostolic men.

But

questions arose in regard to

all

these classes, which

were not immediately answered.

There were several There were many

recensions current both of the sayings of Jesus Christ

and

of the

memoirs

of the apostles.

writings attributed to apostles and apostolic

men which

were
slow,

of doubtful authority.

and the date

But the determination was when a general settlement was made is

4. 20.

See Overbeck, die Anfdnge der patrisl Literatur, in the Hist Zeiischri/t, N.F. Ed. xii. 417472.
2 2

Cf.

Hegesippus, ap. Eus. H.E.

4. 22. 3,

iv

eKacrrj;

TroAei

olItws

f^ei ws o vo/xos KY^pvcra-ei Kal ol Tr/aoc^^rai xai 6 Kvptos, for this practical

co-ordination; see Gebhardt and

Harnack on
131.

2 Clement, p. 132, for

examples; also ilaruack,

Dogm.

INTO A BODY OF DOCTRINE.


uncertain.^

321

There

is

no distinction between canonical and

uncanonical books either in Justin Martyr or in Irenseus.

The

first

Biblical critic

was Marcion
its
first

the controversy

with his followers, which reaches


forced on the Church the
question,
Christ,

height in Tertullian,

serious consideration of the


of the

Which recensions
be a recognized
list

words and memoirs of


of the

and which

of the letters

and other writings

apostles and apostolic men, should be accepted ?

There

came

to

of the writings of the

new

revelations, as there

came

to

be

whether there had yet come


recognized

to

though be a
list

it is

doubtful

of the -writings

of the earlier revelations to the Jews.


list

Writings on the

came in

as the voices of the

Holy Ghost.^
had been,

They were,

as the writings of the prophets

the revelation of the Father to His children.


faith or belief

Hence

came

to take in the Christian world the

sense that

it

had in Philo

of assent not only to the

great conceptions which were contained in the notion of

Ood, but

also to the divine revelation

which was recorded

in the two Testaments.

3.

It

might have been well


to

if

the Christian Church


first

had been content


^

rest

with this

stage in the

Cf.

Weingarten, Zeittafeln,
first

fragment, Origen (ap. Eus.

whom

he traces the

where he cites the Muratorian and Athanasius, in the last of use of the term "canon" in our sense. But
p. 19,

H.E.

6. 25),

we must

canon and the contents whence the idea of a canon of Scripture tame, whether from the ecclesiastical party or from the Gnostics and if from the latter, whether it was from Basilides, or Valentinus, or Most likely the last. Harnack, Dogm. 215 fF. ; cf, 237 Marcion. 240 for Marcion as the first Biblical critic.
carefully distinguish the idea of a
of the canon.

It is uncertain

Harnack, pp. 317

f.

322

XI.

TIIE

INCORPORATION OF CHRISTIAN IDEAS


its

transformation of the idea of belief, and to take as

intellectual basis only the simple statements of the primi-

tive creed interpreted

conflict of speculations

by the New Testament. But the which had compelled the middle
of the sources also

party in the Christian churches to adopt a standard


of belief belief

and a limitation

from which the


eff'ect

might be interpreted, had

had the

of

bringing into the Church the philosophical temper.^

In

the creed of the end of the second century, the age of

TertuUian, there are already philosophical ideas

the
or

creation of the world out of nothing, the "Word, the


relation of the

Creator to the world, of the

Word

Son

to the Father,

and of both

to

men.

The Creed^
is

as given
elaborate.^
it to

in

the treatise against Praxeas,

equally

"With that Creed

be

TertuUian himself was

traditional as
satisfied.

he believed.

He

depre-

cates

the

"curiositas" of the brethren no less than

the "scrupulositas" of the heretics.


applicability of the text,

He

denies

the

"Seek and ye

shall find," to
:

research into the content of Christian doctrine

it

relates

only to the traditional teaching


that, he has
all

when

man

has foundis-

that he needs:

further "seeking"

incompatible with having found.

In other words, as

among modem Ultramontanes,


search but on

faith

tradition (authority).^

must rest not on. The absolute freeof faith"

dom

of speculation

was checked, but the tendency to


it

speculate remained, and

had in the "rule

a vantage-ground within the Church.


1

There grew up
he abandons argu1.

TertuUian, though in his treatise de prcesc.

han-.

ment with the Gnostics, yet in his adv. Marc. of argument, and enters into formal discussion.
2
c.

22, relaxes that line

2.

^ Tert.

dc x>rascr.

hcer. cc. 8, 18,

INTO A BODY OF DOCTRINE.

323

witlim the lines that had been marked out a tendency

which, accepting the rule of faith, and accepting

also,

with possibly slight variations, the canonical


tried to build theories out of

Scriptui-es,
its

them

yvwa-i's

took

place

side

by

side

with

Tr/o-Tf?.^

It

grew up

in several parts of

Christendom.

In Cappadocia, in Asia, in Edessa, in

Palestine, in Alexandria,

were different small groups of

men who

within the recognized lines were working out

philosophical theories of Christianity.^

"We know most

about Alexandria. There was a recognized school


type of the existing philosophical schools
of philosophical Christianity.

on the
study

for the

Its first great teacher

was

Clement.

He was the first to

construct a large philosophy

of Christian doctrine,

with a recognition of the conven-

tional limits,

but by the help and in the domain of Greek


is of less

thought.

But he
first

importance than his great


Principiis of the latter
;

disciple Origen.

In the

De

we
its

have the

complete system of dogma


it,

and

I recom-

mend

the study of

of its omissions as well as of

assertions, of the strange fact that the features of it

which

are in strongest contrast to later dogmatics are in fact its

most archaic and conservative elements.


It is not to

my

present purpose to state the results of

these speculations.

The two

points to

which

wish to

draw your attention


losophi2;e, are these

in reference to this tendency to phi-

(1)
1

The

distinction

between what was either an


yi/c3cris

ori;

Theories were framed as to the relation of

and

Trto-rts

e. g.

the former was conceived to relate to the Spirit, the latter to the Son,

which Clem. Alex, denies (Strom.


2

5. 1).

See Harnackj 549.

y2

324

XT.

THE INCORPORATION OF CHRISTIAN IDEAS

ginal and ground belief or a historical fact of which a

trustworthy tradition had come down, and speculations


lin

regard to such primary beliefs and historical

facts,

tended to disappear in the strong philosophical current


of the time.
It did not disappear without a struggle.

Tertullian,

among

others, gives indications of

it.

The

doctrine of the Divine

Word had begun


:

in his time to
as the " dis-

make

its

way

into the Creed

it

was known

^jensation" i^ceconomia).

''The simpler-minded men," he

remarks,

"not

to

say ignorant and uneducated,

who

always constitute the majority of believers


rule of faith itself transfers us

since the

from the belief in poly-

theism to the belief in one only true


standing that though

God

not

underis to

God be

one, yet

His oneness

be understood as involving a dispensation, are frightened


at this idea of dispensation."^
I

But the ancient


to

conser-

vatism was crushed.

It

came

be considered as imporit

tant to have the right belief in the speculation as

confessedly was to have


(2)

it

in the fact.

The

result of the fading

away

of this distinction,

and

of the

consequent growth in importance of the spe-

culative element,
speculations,

was a tendency

to

check individual

and

to fuse all speculation in the average

speculations of the majority.

The

battle of the second

century had been a battle between those


that there

who

asserted

was a

single

and

final tradition of truth,

and
as

those

who claimed

that the

Holy

Spirit spoke to

them

truly as
tles.

He had

spoken to

men

in the days of the apos-

The
final,

victorious opinion

had been that the revelation

was

and that what was contained in the records of


1

Adv. Prnx

3.

INTO A BODY OP DOCTRINE.


the apostles

325

was the

sufficient

sum

of Christian teaching

hence the

stress laid

upon

apostolic doctrine.

The
were

battle of the third century as

was between those who


and those who

claimed,
to

Marcion claimed, that inspired documents


literal sense,

be taken in their

claimed that they needed a philosophical interpretation,^

that while these monuments


interpretation, ^ yet they

of the apostolic age

required

were

of

no private In other

interpretation,

and that theories based upon them must


j

be the theories of the apostolical churches.

words, the contention that Christianity rested upon the


basis of a traditional doctrine and a traditional standard,

was
tion.

necessarily supplemented

by the contention that the


i

doctrine and standard must have a traditional interpreta-

A rule

of faith

and a canon were comparatively


be
so,

'

useless,

and were

felt to

without a traditionally

The Gnostics were prepared They also appealed to tradition to accept all but this. and to the Scriptures.^ So far it was an even battle each side in such a controversy might retort upon the
authoritative interpretation.
other,
^

and did

so.^

If

it

were allowed

to each side to

Which had been

the contention of the heretics


16, 17.

whom

Tertullian

opposed: de prcesc.
2

liczr. cc.

upon

Origen {de princ, prcef. 3) follows in the line of those who rested apostolic teaching, but gives a foothold for philosophy by saying
(2) that

(1) that the Apostles left the

tigated

they affirmed the existence of

grounds of their statements to be invesmany things without

stating the
^

manner and

origin of their existence.

Valentinus accepted the whole canon (integro instrumento), and

the most important work of Basilides was a commentary on the Gospel


Tert. de prcEsc. hcsr. 38.
* Tert.

de prcesc.

hcer. 18.

It is important to contrast the

arguments

of Tertullian with those of Clement of Alexandria, and of both with

32 G

XT.

THE INCORPORATION OF CHRISTIAN IDEAS

argue on the same bases and by the same methods, each


side

might cLaim a

victory.

A new principle

had

to

be

introduced the denial of the right


tion.

of private interpretaarticles of belief

In regard both to the primary

and

to the majority of apostolic writings,

no serious

dif-

ference of opinion had existed

among

the apostolical

churches.

It

was otherwise with the speculations that


of faith

were based upon the rule


required discussion.

and the canon.

They

The

Christological ideas that were

growing up on
Gnostic

all sides

had much in common with the

They needed a limitation and a The check was conterminous with the sources check. of the tradition itself; the meaning of the canon, as
opinions.

well as the canon

itself,

was deposited with the bishops


and
their

of apostolical churches;

method

of enforcing

the check was the holding of meetings and the framing


of resolutions.

Such meetings had long been held

to

ensure unity on points of discipline.

be held to ensure unity on that no


less

They came now to which had come to be


of bishops.

important

the

interpretation of the recognized

standard

of belief.

They were meetings

Bishops had added to their original functions the function of teachers (^itida-KaXoi)
of

and interpreters of the

will

God

{irpocpriTai)}

Accordingly meetings of bishops

were held, and through the operation of political rather


practice

tlie

which circumstances rendered

necessary.

In Strom.

7.

IG and 17, Clement makes Scripture the criterion between the Church

and the
apostolic
^

heretics,

though he assumes that and uniform.


is first

all

orthodox teaching

is

The combination
2.5.

found in

A}iost. Const.

Bk.

ii.

pp. 14, 10.

IG,

51. 17, 20. 5S, 22.

INTO

A BODY OF DOCTRINE.

827

than of religious causes their decisions were held to be


final.
(i.)

Two
The

important results followed.


result

first

was the formulating

of the speculaof such

tions in definite propositions,

and the insertion

propositions in the Creed.


insertions

The theory was that such


of definitions

were of the nature

and interprecommunities

tations of the original belief.

The mass

of

have never wandered from the

belief that they rest

upon
tradi-

an

original revelation preserved

by a continuous

tion.

But a
is

definition of

what has hitherto been undePerhaps

fined

necessarily of the nature of an addition.

the earliest instance which has come down to us of such

an expansion

of

the Creed,

is

in the

letter

sent

by

Hymenseus, Bishop of Jerusalem, and his colleagues to

Paul of Samosata.^

The

faith
is

which had been handed


is

down from

the beginning

"that God

unbegotten,

one, without beginning, unseen, unchangeable,

whom

no
it

man

hath seen nor can

see,

whose glory and greatness

is impossible for

human

nature to trace out adequately


to

but we must be content


of

have a moderate conception


as he himself says,

Him

His Son reveals

Him ....

*No man knoweth

the Father save the Son, and he to

whomsoever the Son revealeth Him.' We confess and proclaim His begotten Son, the only begotten, the image
of the invisible God, the firstborn of every creature, the

wisdom and word and power of God, being before the worlds, God not by foreknowledge but by essence and
substance."

They had passed


historical
1

into the realm of metaphysics.


earlier
iii.

The

facts

of the

creed

were altogether
p.

Routh, Rcl. Sacr.

p.

290; Harnack,

644.

328

XI.

THE INCORPOKATIOX OF CHRISTIAN IDEAS


Belief

obscured.

was

belief in

certain

speculations.

The conception
round a wide

of the nature of belief It will

had travelled

circuit.

be noted that there had

been a change in the meaning of the word which has


lasted until our

own

day.

The

belief in the veracity of

a witness, or in facts of

which we are cognizant through

our senses, or the primary convictions of our minds

which

may

include the belief in

God

in

admit of a

degree of certainty which cannot attach to the belief in


deductions from metaphysical premises.^
Belief

came to

mean, not the highest form of conviction, but something


lower than conviction, and
still.

it

tends to have that meaning


belief,

But with

this

change in the nature of


in the importance

there

had been no change


to
it.

which was attached


in Jesus Christ,,
find

The acceptance

of these philosophical speculations

was

as important as the belief in

God and

the Son of God.


it

The tendency developed, and we


through the fourth century.
politically

developing

all

In the

Nicene Council the tendency was


tant,

more imporfrom what

but

it

was not theologically

different

had gone

before.

The habit

of defining

and of making
as the philo-

inferences from definitions,

grew the more

sophers passed over into the Christian lines, and logicians

and metaphysicians presided over Christian churches.

The

speculations which were then agreed

upon became
still

stamped as a body of truth, and with the


speculations
of

deeper

the

Councils

of

Constantinople

and

Chalcedon, the resolutions of the Nicene Fathers have

come

to

be looked upon as almost a

new

revelation,

and

the rejection of them as a greater bar to Christian


*

Cf. the definitions of faith in Clem. Al. Sfrovi. 2, cc. 2

and

3.

INTO A BODY OF DOCTRINE.


fellowship than
itself.

329

the

rejection

of

the jS'ew Testament

The second result was the creation of a distinction between what was accepted by the majority at a meeting and what was accepted only by a minority. The distinc(ii.)

tion

had long been growing.

There had been parties


first.

in the Christian communities from the

And

the

existence of such parties

was

admissible.^

They broke the

concord of the brethren, but they did not break the unity
of the faith.
tified
;

ISTow heretics

and schismatics were iden-

difference in speculative belief

was followed by
'

political

penalty.

The

original

contention,

still

pre-

served in Tertullian,^ that every

man

should worship

God

according to his

own

conviction, that one

man's

religion neither

harms nor helps another man, was exfaith.

changed

for the contention that the officers of Christian

communities were the guardians of the


versy on these
lines,

Contro-

and with these assumptions, soon

began

to breed its offspring of

venom and

abuse.
I

But I

will not pain

your ears by quoting, though

have them at

hand, the torrents of abuse which one saint poured upon


another, because the one assented to the speculations of

a majority, and the other had speculations of his own.^


It
^

was by these
t$

stages,

which passed one


7. 15,

into the

atpecTLs is

used in Clem. Al. Strom.


:

of the true system of

Christian doctrine
p. 13,

17

ovtl dpLcrrrj

at'/Decris:

as in Sext.

Empir. (Pijrrh.

16)

it

meant only adherence

to a system of

dogmas (no standard

implied).
2

Ad

Scap. 2.

Philosophers