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passages, the first of which runs thus : 'O od 'viós ékeivov, 'o póvoc λεγόμενος κυρίως νιός, ο λόγος προ των ποιημάτων και συνών και γεννώμενος τότε την 'αρχήν δι' αυτόν πάντα έκτισε και εκόσμησε, χριστος....λέγεTai. (Apol. ii. c. 6.) Our author argues, and we think rightly, that the words ouvùy and yevvóuevos form a contrast, the former relating to an antecedent eternity, during which the Logos abode in the Father, and the latter expressive of a personal manifestation, the time of which is fixed by őtɛ to the epoch of the creation. Two unsuccessful and ill-judged attempts have been made to bring this passage in particular to speak the dogma of the Nicene creed; the one by Koch, who would explain yeyvúmeroc of eternal generation, arbitrarily and against the force of õre, and consider the expression a hysteron proteron; the other by Nifanius, and Bull (in his Defence of the Nicene Creed), who would translate őrɛ by since—which our author truly says is impossible -and, making it dependent on the clause that follows, turn the creating of the universe into the reason why Christ is called the Son of God. To give since, therefore, in the text as the rendering of ore, is an evident oversight of the translator. We have observed with great satisfaction that Otto, in his edition of Justin's works, which we are about to notice, has, in his note on this passage, expressed very clearly and briefly the substance of what our author has stated in his long and able discussion of this point, giving a reference to it.
There are moral qualities in this work which have given us peculiar satisfaction. Not only is the writer's perception acute, and his judgment sound, but his heart is evidently in the right place, and under the sanctifying influence of the truth. Hence his own doctrinal sentiments are truly scriptural, and taking his stand on Bible truth, he sees from the right point of view the devious paths of patristic opinions, and describes them honestly. At the same time a proper allowance is made for what is faulty, whatever is favourable is fairly adduced, and a tone of seriousness and respectful candour is maintained throughout, which is in honourable contrast with the flippant and contemptuous detraction that the fathers have sometimes met with from those, whose spleen, aroused by the impious idolatry of a party, has urged them to perform the duty of Iconoclasts. It is true that the writings of Justin contain much that is feeble, not a little that is groundless, inconsiderate, and even erroneous, and some things that are ridiculous; but before we inflict our blame, or indulge our ridicule, we ought to consider well the moral character and the aims of him, whose intellectual defici. ences we would visit so severely, and also what relation he bears to us, and what possible obligations we may owe to his undervalued labours. For our own part we must confess that, in reflecting on the martyr's character and course of life, an
affectionate esteem for him has filled our minds. We would be far from dignifying him as a saint, simply for the fact of his martyrdom; but the manner in which he underwent it, should gain him respect in our eyes. The man who maintains the honour of our Lord at the certain risk of his life, and transmits to us the inheritance of the gospel at the price of his blood, should be held in honorable remembrance as a brother beloved.* Nor is it the circumstances of his death only that claim for him our admiration and regard, but the exertions of his life also during the whole period subsequent to his conversion. Though not distinguished by original mental power, he was from the first inflamed with a pure
and earnest zeal for the discovery of that truth which should satisfy the wants of his spirit. He sought it in vain from the pride and atheism of the Stoic, the avarice of the Peripatetic, the scientific exclusiveness of the Pythagorean, and only with delusive success from the contemplative mysticism of the Platonist. But he found it in all its imperishable beauty, its divine reality, and its life-giving and healing power in the despised word of Christ. And having found this heavenly treasure in the field which men scored as worthless, he sold all that he had to secure it, and thenceforth assumed it as the work of his life to defend its excellence and to offer it to others. In this singleness of aim, by which the gospel absorbed all his thoughts and energies, he reminds us of one to whom in other respects we should not dream of comparing him,—the apostle Paul. We may observe also that the career of each, of the one in the first, and of the other in the second century, very nearly corresponds as to the respective dates and the space of time occupied. For about forty years Justin pursued the labours of an itinerant evangelist, travelling throughout the Roman empire, in his philosopher's cloak, as a professor of the only true and divine philosophy; seeking wherever it was to be found, though not always with due discrimination, information that might be brought to bear on his great work — 'the defence and confirmation of the gospel;' visiting and instructing the churches, and disputing, when occasion offered, with heathens, Jews, and heretics, not so much to confute as to persuade them. In these argumentative discussions he employed every means, which his resources supplied, or his mind suggested, to convince his opponents of their errors, and to win them over to the truth; and if those specimens of his efforts that remain seem to us defective in many respects,
* Comp. Phil. ii. 29, 30. † It is impossible to fix exactly the date of Justin's conversion, but it must have been in Hadrian's reign, about 130, or a little later. The Alexandrine Chronicle gives 166 as the year of his martyrdom. VOL. XVII.
the defects, as we shall presently show, are such as should be charged chiefly upon the age, and the unavoidable disadvantages under which he laboured. There are two principal excellencies that certainly must be allowed him. The first of these is, strict adherence to what he considered to be truth, as he never advanced any statement or argument merely to delude or baffle his opponent, (that is, yuuvar Tix@s, as it was termed,) in the dishonest manner which Origen and others practised, and Jerome so highly commends; but though some of the replies he made were doubtless very crude and hasty, yet they were the best he could furnish, and were made in sincerity. The insinuation of Trypho that he spoke perhaps otherwise on a certain point, he rejects with indignation. Unquestionably his answers were sometimes unsatisfactory to himself, but even then he shews his sincerity by virtually confessing it, and falling back on ground of which he was better assured. He knew he was right in the main, and therefore pressed on, warning his opponent not to attribute the faultiness of the defence to any defect in the doctrine he was defending. The second excellence for which we must give him credit, is the noble courage, with which in the boldest manner, he vindicates the character and cause of his oppressed brethren; and that this was no cheap virtue will appear very distinctly, when we come to consider the circumstances in which he was placed as their defender. We introduce the following extract, not merely as a specimen of the work, but as necessary here in order to give a general view of the religious character of Justin. And unless we set out with a right impression concerning him in this respect, it is manifestly impossible to judge him fairly in any other.
• However different the rank which has been assigned to Justin, when viewed from this or the other standing point, one distinction has been awarded him without dispute,-his deeply seated enthusiastic love for the gospel. Whether with pleasure or not, all have concurred in Trypho's testimony, 'I am astonished at your devotedness to divine things, άγαμαι της περί το θειον ορμής. (Dial. c. 8.) And truly if by anything whatever, Justin was distinguished by the warmth and decidedness of his christian convictions. We hear the confession of his inmost heart, when he says of christianity, ταύτην μόνην έυρισκον φιλοσοφίαν ασφαλή τε vai ovu popov.' (Dial. c. 8.) *This alone I have found infallible and profita. ble philosophy. Christianity was in truth esteemed by him as the only philosophy that produced real happiness ; he had proved this sufficiently by experience ; and his martyrdom more than all testified, that he deemed his faith among all good things to be the highest and most valuable good. But in his writings also, this his love for christianity is expressed with a freshness and intensity that only he who never felt anything of the unction of the Holy Spirit in his own heart, can suppose to be a fictitious enthusiasm. To the Roman Emperor, Justin avowed, 'I have despised the judgment of the multitude, and have wished most ardently
and striven with all my power, that I might be found to be a christian.' He assured the Jew Trypho, ‘To us who are enlightened by the Word of God, this is sweeter than honey, as you may perceive from this, that we do not deny his name even in death itself.' In a third passage he again exclaims to the emperor, ‘If the soldiers enrolled by you, who have taken the military oath, consider this solemn engagement more dear to them than their own life, or parents, or father-land, and all kindred, although you can offer them nothing that is unchangeable-how truly ridiculous would it be, if we, whose aim and hope is immortality, were not willing to endure all things, in order to gain the object of our desire from him who is able to bestow it?' Hence this love for christian truth, this inspiration of faith, was no barren blossom without fruit. Justin's faith was not a mere admission of intellectual truth, an idle zeal for dogmatic formulæ, a fruitless indulgence of extravagant expectations ; it was a moral principle producing a renovation of the life. Justin distinctly referred every thing to a moral purpose, as the last and highest aim of human endeavour. He dwelt with peculiar pleasure on the delineation of the moral effects of christianity, and spoke with intense delight on the complete transformation which generally took place in the dispositions of the converts to the christian faith.
Justin distinctly shews in opposition to the much talking' of the heathen, that the essence of christian piety consists not in words but in deeds ;—and in contrast to Jewish formality, that christians honoured God and Christ till death, not merely with their lips but with their hearts and actions. He impressively declares that 'christians, whenever the baptismal rite was performed, prayed for the newly baptized, and for themselves, for since they learned to know the truth, they might also have the power to prove themselves by their works to be good stewards and conscientious guardians of the commandments they had received. He repeatedly expresses his firm conviction that God accepted only those who imitated the moral perfection that dwelt essentially in him, who copied his purity, righteousness, and philanthropy : that the only means for attaining the forgiveness of sins, and a participation of the heavenly inheritance, was the actually becoming free from sin after the knowledge of Christ and baptism. Everywhere he considers the hope of eternal felicity to be limited by moral fitness. We hold the belief,' says he, ‘that only those will attain to a happy immortality who lead holy and virtuous lives, according to the image of God; but all who go hence in unrighteousness, and without renovation of life, will be punished with eternal fire.' (εν αιωνίω πυρί Ι Αpol. c. 21. comp. c. 8.) Thus, according to Justin, the faith and the life stood in the most intimate connexion ; his morality was entirely supported by his faith ; and then again, he acknowledged no faith as genuine without morality.' - vol. i. pp. 211-215.
Such were the great principles that Justin cherished and maintained. Acknowledging such principles and displaying them in practice, he became an apologist for christianity in the highest and truest sense—his life was an apology, an apology that all must have read and none could refute. But whether
for a vocal, or for a silent and practical defence, there was need in his day of an undaunted firmness, in which he was far from being found deficient. It was a day when the christian had to stand no easy trial, but one that called for resistance unto blood, and in those instances where it reached not this height, there was much to be faced that was little less painful and terrible to the flesh. It may be said that in the reigns of Hadrian and Antoninus Pius, there was no direct persecution set on foot by the government, but this was not necessary; the fundamental principles of the Roman government forbade the toleration of such a sect as the christians, for no citizen might change his religion at pleasure, but was bound to worship the gods of the state, including the Genius of the emperor; and therefore, when the christians escaped, it was solely owing to the leniency or supineness of the governors. But it was not every provincial governor that with the indifference of Gallio combined his firmness; a timid and yielding Pilate was oftener found who, when assailed by the bigoted fury of the rabble, at the time of a famine or an earthquake, proclaiming the desertion of the temples and sacrifices and the consequent anger of the gods -instead of driving them from the judgment seat, was rather willing to do them a pleasure by surrendering the atheists to their vengeance. That this was the case is evident from what Justin tells us he had witnessed prior to his conversion. His mind had been powerfully impressed by beholding the constancy of christians when accused, and their unfeigned fearlessness in reference to death and all else that was dreadful; and the conclusion had thus been forced upon him, that it was impossible they should be guilty of the abominable vices laid to their charge; for what voluptuary was ever known to welcome death, and not to dread it above all things, as ending his base indulgences? But the ignorance, malice, and bigotry of the populace, though the most dangerous, were not the only hostile elements, in addition to the jealousy of the state, that the church had to contend with. What the influence of the priests may have been, it is difficult to say: they would hardly appear to have been respected, combined, and powerful enough to prove dangerous antagonists. But there was another body of men whose emnity, in the age of Justin, was just beginning to be roused into vigorous action, we mean the philosophers; though as yet their assaults were confined to desultory and contemptuous encounters : their opposition had not yet embodied itseĪf in the distinct and systematic form, nor assumed the panoply, in which it entered the field half a century later. Their antagonism, as to the nature of its principles and procedure, would form an interesting subject of inquiry. The school of Epicurus is