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in his dialogue, which he calls Gallus; and to name the Greeks, and to join together the first and last, Irenæus and Apollinarius.” Where we see he acknowledges Irenæus to be of this opinion; but that he was the first that held it, I believe that that is more a Christian untruth, than Irenæus's opinion a Judaical fable. For he himself acknowledges in the place above cited, that Irenæus followed Papias ; and it is certain and confessed, that Justin Martyr believed it long before him: and Irenæus himself derives it from—Presbyteri, qui Johannem discipulum Domini viderunt ; from priests, which saw John, the disciple of the Lord. Lastly, by Pamelius, Sixtus Senensis, and Faverdentius, in the places above quoted.
Seeing, therefore, it is certain, even to the confession of the adversaries, that Papias, Justin Martyr, Melito, and Irenæus, the most considerable and eminent men of their age did believe and teach this doctrine; and, seeing it has been proved as evidently as a thing of this nature can be, that none of their contemporaries opposed or condemned it; it remains, according to Cardinal Perron's first rule, that this is to be esteemed the doctrine of the church of that age.
My, second reason I form thus: Whatsoever doctrine is taught by the fathers of any age, not as doctors, but as witnesses of the tradition of the church (that is, not as their own opinion, but as the doctrine of the church of their times) that is undoubtedly to be so esteemed, especially if none contradicted them in it; but the fathers above cited teach this doctrine, not as their own private opinion, but as the Christian tradition, and as the doctrine of the church, neither did any
contradict them in it; ergo, it is undoubtedly to be so esteemed.
The major of this syllogism is Cardinal Perron's second rule and way of finding out the doctrine of the ancient church in any age; and if it be not a sure rule, farewell the use of all antiquity. And for the minor, there will be little doubt of it to him that considers, that Papias professes himself to have received this doctrine by unwritten tradition, though not from the apostles themselves immediately, yet from their scholars, as appears by Eusebius in the forecited third book, chapter 33.
That Irenæus grounded it upon evident Scripture, and professes that he learnt it (whether mediately or immediately, I cannot tell) from presbyters, qui Johannem discipulum Domini viderunt, priests or elders, who saw John the Lord's disciple, and heard of him what our Lord taught of those times (of the thousand years); and also, as he says after, from Papias, the auditor of John the chamber-fellow of Polycarpus, an ancient man, who recorded it in writing.
Faverdentius's note upon this place is very notable. Hinc apparet (saith he), &c. From hence it appears, that Irenæus neither first invented this opinion, nor held it as proper to himself, but got this blot and blemish from certain fathers. Papias, I suppose, and some other inglorious fellows, the familiar friends of Irenæus, are here intended.
I hope then, if the fathers, which lived with the apostles, had their blots and blemishes, it is no such horrid crime for Calvin and the century writers to impute the same to their great-grandchildren. Ætas parentum pejor avis progeniem fert
vitiosiorem. But yet these inglorious disciples of the apostles, though perhaps not so learned as Faverdentius, were yet certainly so honest, as not to invent lies, and deliver them as apostolic tradition. Or, if they were not, what confidence can we place in any other unwritten tradition?
Lastly, That Justin Martyr grounds it upon plain prophecies of the Old Testament, and express words of the New. He professeth, That he, and all other Christians, of a right belief in all things, believe it; joins them who believe it not, with them who deny the resurrection; or else says, that none denied this, but the same who denied the resurrection; and that indeed they were called Christians, but in deed and in truth were
Whosoever, I say, considers these things, will easily grant, that they held it not as their own opinion, but as the doctrine of the church, and the faith of Christians.
Hereupon I conclude, whatsoever they held, not as their private opinion, but as the faith of the church, that was the faith of the church of their time; but this doctrine they held, not as their private opinion, but as the faith of the church; ergo, it was and is to be esteemed the faith of the church.
Trypho. Do ye confess, that before ye expect the coming of Christ, this place Jerusalem shall be again restored, and that your people shall be congregated, and rejoice together with Christ, and the patriarchs, and the prophets ? &c.
Justin Martyr. I have confessed to you before, that both I and many others do believe, as you well know, that this shall be; but that
again, who are not of the pure and holy opinion of Christians, do not acknowledge this, I have also signified unto you; for I have declared unto you, that some called Christians, but being indeed atheists and impious heretics, do generally teach blasphemous, and atheistical, and foolish things. But that you might know that I speak not this to you only, I will make a book, as near as I can, of these our disputations, where I will profess in writing that which I say before you; for I resolve to follow not men, and the doctrines of men, but God, and the doctrine of God.
For although you chance to meet with some that are called Christians, which do not confess this, but dare to blaspheme the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob; which also say there is no resurrection of the dead, but that as soon as they die, their souls are received into heaven; do not you yet think them Christians: as neither, if a man consider rightly, will he account the Sadducees, and other sectaries and heretics, as the Genistæ, and the Meristæ, and Galileans, and pharisees, and Hellenians, and baptists, and other such, to be Jews; but only that they are called Jews, and the children of Abraham, and such as with their lips confess God (as God himself cries out) but have their hearts far from him. But I, and all Christians, that in all things believe aright, both know that there shall be a resurrection of the flesh, and a thousand years in Jerusalem restored, and adorned, and enlarged; according as the prophets Ezekiel and Essay, and others do testify: for thus saith Isaiah of the time of this thousand years: “For there shall be a new heaven, and a new earth, and they shall not remember the former," &c. And after: “A certain man amongst us, whose name was John, one of the twelve apostles of Christ, in that revelation which was exhibited unto him, hath foretold—that they which believe our Christ, shall live in Jerusalem a thousand years, and that after the universal and everlasting resurrection and judgment shall be.”
I have presumed in the beginning of Justin Martyr's answer to substitute (not) instead of (also) because I am confident, that either by chance, or the fraud of some ill-willers to the millenaries' opinion, the place has been corrupted, and oú turned. into kai, not into also. For, if we retain the usual reading-But that many, who are also of the pure and holy opinion of Christians, do not acknowledge this, I have also signified unto youthen we must conclude, that Justin Martyr himself did believe the opinion of them, which denied the thousand years to be the pure and holy opinion of Christians: and, if so, why did he not. himself believe it? Nay, how could he but believe it to be true, professing it (as he does, if the place be right) to be the pure and holy opinion of Christians ? For how a false doctrine can be the pure and holy opinion of Christians, what Christian can conceive? Or, if it may be so, how can the contrary avoid being untrue, unholy, and not the opinion of Christians ?
Again, if we read the place thus—That many, who are also of the pure and holy opinion of Christians, do not acknowledge this, I have also signified-certainly there will be neither sense nor reason, neither coherence nor consequence in the words following-For I have told you
many called Christians, but being indeed atheists and