Friday, June 22, 2007

Query letter to This Rock

This is a query letter to This Rock. A query letter is a 1-page pitch for an article. It's SOP for magazines.

Any comments on grammar, content, etc. would be much appreciated. (Should magesterial infallibility be capitalized? )

June 21, 2007

Tim Ryland
This Rock
2020 Gillespie Way
El Cajon, California 92020-0407

Dear Mr. Ryland,

Between 254A.D. and 257A.D., Pope Stephen defended orthodoxy with respect to both baptism and his own authority in a single decision that stands as the most underrated in Christian history.

Pope Stephen’s decision has been largely overlooked by Catholic apologists as a means for persuading mainline Protestants that sola scriptura is wrong and magisterial infallibility is right. Today, there is no disagreement among mainline Protestants and Catholics as to what constitutes a valid Christian baptism. Baptism is valid if it involves the application of water, and is performed in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit with the intention of doing what Jesus commanded. Cyprian and others took the unorthodox position that the baptism of heretics was invalid, simply because they were in schism. They defended this position by appealing to Scripture over the authority of the Roman episcopate. It was Stephen who preserved orthodoxy by asserting the validity of any Trinitarian baptism. And he defended his own authority to make this decision with an appeal to Matthew 16:18.

All of us, both Catholic and Protestant, place our hope for Christian unity in our common baptism. Where would we be today if Cyprian had prevailed? Mainline Protestantism requires one to believe that Stephen indeed made a very wise (and scripturally sound) decision on the issue of heretical baptism, but that he grossly misinterpreted Matthew 16:18 in defending his own authority to make that very same decision. This strains credibility. Is there any way that Stephen came to the right conclusion about baptism apart from the Wisdom of God? Would God have granted His Wisdom to a man who would, virtually in the same breath, attempt to seize for himself authority that rightly belonged to scripture alone?

Cyprian loved God and His Word. His stance on the issue of baptism was motivated not by moral rigidity but by compassion. He only wanted to give people an assurance of the forgiveness of their sins. Does this remind you of anyone else in Church history?

I have developed this idea more fully in an article entitled, “Sola Scriptura vs. Magisterial Infallibility: How Baptismal Unity Was Preserved in the Early Church.” I believe this article is well suited for the “Classic Apologetics” section of This Rock.

If such an article would be of interest to you, please send me the requirements for the column. I will tailor the material to meet your needs. Thank you for taking the time to consider my idea.

His servant and yours,


Miguel Cuthbert said...

I'd like to see the full article. My only criticism is that it is credible to believe that Pope Stephen may have been correct in the place of asserting the validity of all trinitarian baptisms while at the same time overextending his authority. If one reads the Pope (even this early Pope) as the shadowy figure in Walter M. Bauer's analysis of the early church that might be expected.

Cair Paravel said...

Here it is...

Not yet of a form that is suitable for This Rock. Also, I want to work a little harder on defending Cyprian's motivations.

How baptismal unity was preserved in the early church

The issue of authority remains the most fundamental source of division between Catholics and Protestants. Sola scriptura, which is Latin for “scripture alone”, is the Protestant proposition that Scripture is the sole infallible norm of Christian faith and practice, and that it carries unique authority above that of any human institution. Mainline Protestants (Lutherans, Presbyterians, Anglicans, Episcopalians, and Methodists) do not reject either tradition or ecclesial authority; indeed, they have a very high regard for both, and believe that Scripture can only be rightly interpreted within the context of the creeds of the early church. However, Protestants do not assign infallibility to any ecclesial tradition or authority; Scripture alone has the property of infallibility. Consequently, when a Protestant senses a conflict between Scripture and the authoritative teachings of a church, the Protestant feels a moral obligation to go with Scripture. The Catholic alternative to sola scriptura is often misunderstood by Catholics and Protestants alike and requires some explanation.

Lee Strobel introduces his apology for mere Christianity, The Case for Christ, with a story from his years as a journalist for the Chicago Tribune. The story is about a man who was initially found guilty of a crime but later was acquitted. Strobel presents the story as an allegory for his conversion from atheism to Christianity based on the evidence.1 As it turns out, this story is a marvelous mechanism for explaining how Catholics understand Scripture and its relationship to tradition and ecclesial authority.

In Strobel’s story, James Dixon was accused of shooting a police officer who had intervened in a domestic dispute. The officer had been shot with a .22-caliber gun, and powder burns indicated that the shot was fired at extremely close range. A .22 found near the scene had Dixon’s fingerprints on it, and it had indeed been fired once. The officer’s gun was still in its holster, and the other person involved in the scuffle was unarmed. A year after the shooting, Dixon confessed to the crime and was found guilty. A few days later, Strobel received a call from an informant who offered another theory: that the officer was carrying a .22-caliber gun disguised as a pen, and that during the scuffle, the pen gun had fired and caused the officer’s wound. The officer had framed Dixon because the pen gun was illegal. Armed with this new theory, Strobel examined the evidence anew. Witnesses said that Dixon’s gun had actually discharged in a downward direction before the officer’s arrival; on the front porch, there was a chip in the cement that was consistent with a bullet’s impact. The officer’s wound was nearly parallel with his chest – a very difficult direction had the shot come from a weapon held by another person. Powder burns were concentrated inside the officer’s shirt pocket. Eventually, Dixon was acquitted. When Strobel asked Dixon why he confessed to the crime, Dixon said that he was offered a plea deal. In exchange for a guilty plea, prosecutors offered a sentence of one year; Dixon had already served 362 days in jail awaiting his trial. So he chose to plead guilty and go home rather than face the prospect of an almost certain jury conviction and a 20-year prison sentence.

In Catholic thought, Scripture is like the physical evidence in Dixon’s case in two ways. First, physical evidence cannot lie – it can only point to the truth. Of course, not all material is evidence, but even material that is not evidence tells the truth about its own irrelevancy. In the same way, the Catholic Church teaches that Scripture can only tell the truth – it is infallible. Second, in Dixon’s case, the physical evidence was complete – nothing more could be added to it later. And it was enough – an objective and thorough investigator should have come to the right conclusion based only on the physical evidence. In the same way, the Catholic Church holds that Scripture is materially sufficient, because all of the information that we need to live faithfully is contained in the words of Scripture, at least implicitly.

In Catholic thought, the Church fathers (early Christians whose writings we possess) are like the informant and other witnesses in Dixon’s case. To be sure, informants can err, but they provide us with theories that can be upheld or discarded based on the physical evidence. In Dixon’s case, the informant provided a theory that no one had derived from the physical evidence, but that best accounted for the physical evidence. The Catholic Church holds that the doctrinal propositions of the Church fathers are to be regarded in the same way - as theories to be thoughtfully considered and upheld if they best account for the totality of the evidence of Scripture.

In Catholic thought, the Magisterium, which comprises the Bishop of Rome and those Bishops in communion with him, is like the judicial authority in Dixon’s case. Ultimately, it was the judicial authority that pronounced the truth of Dixon’s innocence, and this decision was to be respected by the rest of American society. In the same way, the Catholic Church holds that the Magisterium has the authority to decide matters of faith and morals for the Church at large, and that these decisions are to be adhered to with the obedience of faith. But unlike the judicial authority in Dixon’s case, the Catholic Church holds that Magisterium is specially endowed by Christ with a charism which allows it to authentically preserve the deposit of faith, once for all delivered to the saints. These ideas about the Magisterium are supported by Scripture, specifically by Matthew 16:18-19 and 1 Timothy 3:15.

Finally, in Catholic thought, Sacred Tradition is like the Constitution of the United States which forms the very foundation of our government, including our criminal justice system. According to this “judicial tradition,” Dixon had the right to due process, to not be compelled to testify against himself, to a speedy and public trial, to know the nature and cause of the accusation, to be confronted with the witnesses against him, to have compulsory processes to obtain witnesses in his favor, and to have the assistance of counsel in his defense. Unfortunately, in Dixon’s case, some of the tenets of our judicial tradition were not upheld particularly well; he was effectively forced to testify against himself by the conditions of the plea bargain he was offered. However, even though some tenets were not upheld perfectly in this particular case, no one questions the tenets themselves, or even American commitment to those tenets. Also, whereas we value physical evidence because it is, by its very nature, incapable of error, we value the Constitution because wise men, after great deliberation, agreed upon its contents, and because it has stood the test of time. Analogously, the Catholic Church holds that Sacred Tradition comprises those timeless Christian tenets, informed by both Scripture and the church fathers, behind which the Magisterium has placed its full teaching authority. But unlike the Constitution, the Catholic Church holds that Sacred Tradition is infallible, because it is backed by the full authority of the Magisterium. Sacred Tradition includes the constitution of Scripture (the canon) and the doctrines expressed by the Apostles’ and Nicene Creeds. As in Dixon’s case, it is historical fact that the Catholic Church has not always practiced her own Sacred Tradition well. For example, the Catholic Church has always formally held that we are saved by grace alone, but prior to the Reformation, the actions of individual Catholics, some with significant authority, belied this fundamental truth. Nevertheless, the official teaching and the predominant practice of “grace alone” have persisted through the ages.

To summarize, just as physical evidence, informants, judicial authority, and judicial tradition were all necessary in order for American society to come to a knowledge of the truth of James Dixon’s innocence, so Catholics believe that the Holy Spirit works through the means of Scripture, the church fathers, the Magisterium, and Sacred Tradition to bring the Church to a knowledge of the full truth of Christianity. And this remains the rub with Protestants who believe, in the doctrine of sola scriptura, that Scripture alone is infallible and formally sufficient for the same purpose.

The most common Catholic argument against sola scriptura is that it has led to ecclesial anarchy. There are thousands of Protestant denominations today, each one claiming to rightly interpret Scripture. In his book, The Shape of Sola Scriptura, Keith Mathison defends the doctrine, but concedes that by all outward appearances, sola scriptura has not worked since the Reformation. He responds to this problematic observation with several points. First, the problems that led to the Reformation had already existed for centuries. Second, the version of sola scriptura taught by the reformers was soon replaced by a perverted version, termed solo scriptura by Mathison, which advocated individual interpretation of Scripture apart from its historical and theological context. Finally, Mathison argues that sola scriptura, which he also calls “Tradition I” was the relationship between Scripture, church, and tradition that guided the earliest Christians. Mathison’s explanation is actually a response to an essay by Patrick Madrid, a Catholic apologist:

If Madrid is asking about Tradition I, which was framed by the classical Reformers in terms of sola scriptura, then the response to his request for “just one” example of when it has worked would be the first three to four hundred years of the Church. This was a time prior to the existence of either of the positions Rome has advocated for the last five hundred years, and Tradition I worked fine. What about its workability during Protestantism’s “relatively brief life-span”? We cannot point to the same kind of practical success of Tradition I over the last five centuries for several reasons. First, the Reformation occurred long after the Church had initially split, and this initial split created problems which the Reformation could not possibly solve immediately. Second, the rather rapid substitution of solo scriptura for sola scriptura within Protestant circles led to the rapid fragmentation of Protestantism. Third, the radical individualism of the Enlightenment in Western Europe contributed to the weakening of virtually every branch of Christendom. In any case, there has been at least one lengthy period of Church history when Tradition I worked – the early Church. It worked without a universal bishop, and it worked without any claims to ecclesiastical infallibility.2

So Mathison’s position is that sola scriptura has not seemed to work since the Reformation, but that we can be sure the problem is not with the doctrine itself, because sola scriptura worked fine in the first three to four hundred years of the church. As evidence that this is the view of mainline Protestant theologians today, we submit those who endorsed this book: R.C. Sproul of Ligonier Ministries, Charles P. Arand of Concordia Seminary, and Douglas M. Jones III, editor of Canon Press.

By “worked fine”, we assume that Mathison means “preserved orthodoxy”. So, the purpose of this article is to examine how orthodoxy was preserved in the early church on the specific issue of what constitutes a valid Christian baptism, because this issue provides some remarkable insight into the issue of ecclesial authority.

There is no disagreement among mainline Protestants and Catholics as to what constitutes a valid Christian baptism. Baptism is valid if it involves the application of water, and is performed in the name the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit with the intention of doing what Jesus commanded. Such a baptism is valid regardless of personal beliefs held by the minister or even the one being baptized. Therefore, it is against God’s intentions for a person ever to undergo this rite twice.

The mainline Protestant position is well represented by the words of the Lutheran Confessions:

In the first place, we must above all things know well the words upon which Baptism is founded, and to which everything refers that is to be said on the subject, namely, where the Lord Christ speaks in Matthew 28, 19: Go ye therefore and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.3

Further, we say that we are not so much concerned to know whether the person baptized believes or not; for on that account Baptism does not become invalid; but everything depends upon the Word and command of God. This now is perhaps somewhat acute, but it rests entirely upon what I have said, that Baptism is nothing else than water and the Word of God in and with each other, that is, when the Word is added to the water, Baptism is valid, even though faith be wanting. For my faith does not make Baptism, but receives it. Now, Baptism does not become invalid even though it be wrongly received or employed; since it is not bound (as stated) to our faith, but to the Word.4

Therefore our Baptism abides forever; and even though some one should fall from it and sin, nevertheless we always have access thereto, that we may again subdue the old man. But we need not again be sprinkled with water; for though we were put under the water a hundred times, it would nevertheless be only one Baptism, although the operation and signification continue and remain.5

Neither does the fact that the Sacraments are administered by the unworthy detract from their efficacy, because, on account of the call of the Church, they represent the person of Christ, and do not represent their own persons, as Christ testifies, Luke 10, 16: He that heareth you heareth Me. [Thus even Judas was sent to preach.] When they offer the Word of God, when they offer the Sacraments, they offer them in the stead and place of Christ. Those words of Christ teach us not to be offended by the unworthiness of the ministers.6

And the Catholic position is articulated in the Catechism of the Catholic Church:

Baptism constitutes the foundation of communion among all Christians, including those who are not yet in full communion with the Catholic Church: For men who believe in Christ and have been properly baptized are put in some, though imperfect, communion with the Catholic Church. Justified by faith in Baptism, they are incorporated into Christ; they therefore have a right to be called Christians, and with good reason are accepted as brothers by the children of the Catholic Church. Baptism therefore constitutes the sacramental bond of unity existing among all who through it are reborn.7

The essential rite of Baptism consists in immersing the candidate in water or pouring water on his head, while pronouncing the invocation of the Most Holy Trinity: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.8

Baptism imprints on the soul an indelible spiritual sign, the character, which consecrates the baptized person for Christian worship. Because of the character Baptism cannot be repeated.9

We may take such sacramental unity for granted today, but there was a time in the early church when it was seriously threatened.

Between 254A.D. and 257A.D., the very issue of what constitutes a valid Christian baptism arose in the church. At the time, there were several heretical sects, the most prominent of which were the Novatians. The Novatians, following their leader Novatian, took an especially hard line on readmitting people who had lapsed during persecution. Novatian took the position that such people should never be readmitted to the communion of Christians, and so he broke away from the Church. When people who had been baptized by clergy of the Novatian and other heretical sects desired admission to the Church, the question arose as to whether these people ought to be re-baptized. Cyprian, the bishop of North Africa, spoke for many others when he insisted that, yes, these converts should be re-baptized, because that which the heretics called “baptism” was really nothing at all. Cyprian was especially prolific on the subject and addressed it in many of his letters. The following excerpt is typical of his position:

Cyprian to Jubaianus his brother, greeting. You have written to me, dearest brother, wishing that the impression of my mind should be signified to you, as to what I think concerning the baptism of heretics; who, placed without, and established outside the Church, arrogate to themselves a matter neither within their right nor their power. This baptism we cannot consider as valid or legitimate, since it is manifestly unlawful among them; … we established this same matter once more by our judgment, deciding that there is one baptism which is appointed in the Catholic Church; and that by this those are not re-baptized, but baptized by us, who at any time come from the adulterous and unhallowed water to be washed and sanctified by the truth of the saving water.10

Firmilian, the bishop of Caesarea, was of the same mind as Cyprian on the matter:

Moreover, all other heretics, if they have separated themselves from the Church of God, can have nothing of power or of grace, since all power and grace are established in the Church where the elders preside, who possess the power both of baptizing, and of imposition of hands, and of ordaining. For as a heretic may not lawfully ordain nor lay on hands, so neither may he baptize, nor do any thing holily or spiritually, since he is an alien from spiritual and deifying sanctity.11

Stephen was the bishop of Rome at this time. Although no letters from him have survived, we can surmise his position from communications between Cyprian and Firmilian. Stephen took the position than any baptism performed in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit was valid, regardless of the heretical status of the minister. A letter from Firmilian to Cyprian regarding Stephen’s decision reads:

That, moreover, is absurd, that they do not think it is to be inquired who was the person that baptized, for the reason that he who has been baptized may have obtained grace by the invocation of the Trinity, of the names of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Then this will be the wisdom which Paul writes is in those who are perfected. But who in the Church is perfect and wise who can either defend or believe this, that this bare invocation of names is sufficient to the remission of sins and the sanctification of baptism; since these things are only then of advantage, when both he who baptizes has the Holy Spirit, and the baptism itself also is not ordained without the Spirit? But, say they, he who in any manner whatever is baptized without, may obtain the grace of baptism by his disposition and faith, which doubtless is ridiculous in itself, as if either a wicked disposition could attract to itself from heaven the sanctification of the righteous, or a false faith the truth of believers.12

In the very same letter of Firmilian, we learn that Stephen asserted his authority to make this decision with an appeal to Matthew 16:18:

And in this respect I am justly indignant at this so open and manifest folly of Stephen, that he who so boasts of the place of his episcopate, and contends that he holds the succession from Peter, on whom the foundations of the Church were laid, should introduce many other rocks and establish new buildings of many churches; maintaining that there is baptism in them by his authority.13

Cyprian and Firmilian appeal to Scripture copiously in defense of their position. For example, the following excerpt makes Cyprian sound very much like a modern-day Protestant:

Let nothing be innovated, says [Stephen], nothing maintained, except what has been handed down. Whence is that tradition? Whether does it descend from the authority of the Lord and of the Gospel, or does it come from the commands and the epistles of the apostles? For that those things which are written must be done, God witnesses and admonishes, saying to Joshua the son of Nun: “The book of this law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate in it day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein.”14

And indeed, Firmilian seems to have no special reverence for Roman authority:

“they who are at Rome do not observe those things in all cases which are handed down from the beginning, and vainly pretend the authority of the apostles…”15

Incredibly, in The Shape of Sola Scriptura, Mathison cites the two preceding quotes from Cyprian and Firmilian as evidence that sola scriptura was the guiding principle for the early church fathers16. But these quotes are taken out of the context of an argument in which Cyprian and Firmilian were wrong, according to mainline Protestantism.

Moreover, according to Firmilian, Stephen stood alone:

Moreover, how great sin have you heaped up for yourself, when you cut yourself off from so many flocks! For it is yourself that you have cut off. Do not deceive yourself, since he is really the schismatic who has made himself an apostate from the communion of ecclesiastical unity. For while you think that all may be excommunicated by you, you have excommunicated yourself alone from all; and not even the precepts of an apostle have been able to mold you to the rule of truth and peace, although he warned, and said, “I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that ye walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called, with all lowliness and meekness, with long-suffering, forbearing one another in love; endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.17

The Africans persisted in the practice of re-baptism, despite Stephen’s instruction. About 70 years later, in 314 A.D., a council of western bishops was convoked by Constantine at Arles. The primary purpose of the council was to deal with another heretical sect, the Donatists, but they took the opportunity to direct the Africans to conform to the Church’s position on baptism:

As for the Africans, because they follow their own law and give second baptism, it was resolved that if anyone should be converted from heresy to the Church he should be asked for his creed. And if it is clear that he has been already baptized in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, hands merely should be laid upon him, that he may receive the Holy Spirit. But if, when he is questioned, he does not acknowledge the Trinity, let him be baptized.18

So on the issue of what constitutes valid Christian baptism, the facts are these:
1. There is no debate among Catholics and mainline Protestants as to what is orthodox.
2. Cyprian, Firmilian, and others took the unorthodox position that the baptism of heretics and schismatics was really no baptism at all. They defended this position by appealing to Scripture over the authority of the Roman episcopate.
3. It was Stephen, the bishop of Rome from 254 A.D. and 257 A.D., who preserved orthodoxy by asserting the validity of any Trinitarian baptism. He defended his own authority to make this decision with an appeal to Matthew 16:18.

Stephen’s decision must be one of the most underrated decisions in Christian history, because so many of us place our hope for Christian unity in our common baptism. Where would we be today if Cyprian and Firmilian had prevailed? Mainline Protestantism requires one to believe that Stephen indeed made a very wise decision on the issue of heretical baptism, but that he grossly misinterpreted Matthew 16:18 in defending his own authority to make that very same decision.

Stephen was not the first bishop to interpret Matthew 16:18 as granting a special degree of authority to the bishop of Rome. Cyprian, earlier in his career as bishop of North Africa, wrote a letter to Cornelius, a previous Roman bishop, on the subject of various heretical sects, and he had this to say:

After such things as these, moreover, they still dare - a false bishop having been appointed for them by, heretics - to set sail and to bear letters from schismatic and profane persons to the throne of Peter, and to the chief church whence priestly unity takes its source; and not to consider that these were the Romans whose faith was praised in the preaching of the apostle, to whom faithlessness could have no access.19

Sola scriptura did not work in the early church any better than it has since the Reformation, because it is unworkable. It is as unworkable as asking all Americans to decide for themselves the matter of James Dixon’s guilt or innocence based on the physical evidence alone, even if we allow that they should be guided by informants, judicial authority, and judicial tradition. No one would propose such a system for a civilized society, even though we know that informants, judicial authority, and judicial tradition are all fallible.

We readily concede that apparent contradictions are to be found in Rome’s teaching history. In Catholic apologetic works, some resolutions for these apparent contradictions are quite good, and some are, well, quite strained. But the apparent contradictions in Rome’s teaching history are no more problematic that the apparent contradictions in the Bible, some of which seem quite irreconcilable. So is the Bible truly without a single error? From reason alone, one cannot know. Where apparent contradictions exist, ours is only to trust that God is communicating complex truth. This statement of faith in Biblical infallibility is a presupposition; we cannot prove its validity. Faith in magisterial infallibility is exactly analogous. It is a presupposition. Have Roman bishops really never erred in any formal teaching on faith and morals in all of Christian history? Again, from reason alone, one cannot know. But where apparent contradictions exist in Rome’s teaching history, we can decide to trust that God is communicating complex truth.

We strongly encourage all Christians to pray earnestly for the right reunification of the Church. Is there any doubt that this is the will of our Father? Our disunity presents a cacophonous witness to the world exactly when they most need to hear the clear voice of our Savior through us. With this attitude of prayer and mutual respect, we must strive to understand one another’s beliefs, trusting that in gaining this understanding, God will not allow us to be persuaded by falsehood. If we do these two things, we will be ready to greet our Savior as one Holy Church when He returns.

1 Lee Strobel, The Case for Christ (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 1998), 9-18.
2 Keith Mathison, The Shape of Sola Scriptura (Moscow, ID: Canon Press, 2001), 290.
3 Triglot Concordia: The Large Catechism, Of Baptism, Par. 3.
4 Triglot Concordia: The Large Catechism, Of Baptism, Par. 52-53.
5 Triglot Concordia: The Large Catechism, Of Baptism, Par. 77-78.
6 Triglot Concordia: Apology of the Ausberg Confession, Of the Church, Par. 28.
7 Catechism of the Catholic Church, Par. 1271, with quotation marks, references, and footnotes omitted for clarity.
8 Catechism of the Catholic Church, Par. 1278.
9 Catechism of the Catholic Church, Par. 1280, with references omitted for clarity.
10 The Ante-Nicene Fathers, Schaff, P. ed. (Garland, TX: Galaxie Software, 2000), Epistle 72:1.
11 The Ante-Nicene Fathers, Epistle 74:7.
12 The Ante-Nicene Fathers, Epistle 74:9.
13 The Ante-Nicene Fathers, Epistle 74:17.
14 The Ante-Nicene Fathers, Epistle 73:2.
15 The Ante-Nicene Fathers, Epistle 74:6.
16 The Shape of Sola Scriptura, 27-29.
17 The Ante-Nicene Fathers, Epistle 74:24.
18 The See of Peter, Shotwell and Loomis, eds. (New York: Columbia University Press, 1991), 482. (This is Canon VIII of the Council of Arles.)
19 The Ante-Nicene Fathers, Epistle 54:14.

Cair Paravel said...


Formatting came out lousy. It's hard to tell where I have extended quote text.