SilverIt followed immediately upon confession of faith in Christ SilverNew blood was an imperative necessity; perhaps this new religion, that had given such power of endurance to its votaries, would furnish the needful help. SilverTo which end, at the entrance of the temples, there was commonly placed a vessel full of holy water.%u2019 How did this water get its holiness? This water %u2018was consecrated,%u2019 says Athen?us, %u2018by putting into it a Burning Torch taken from the Altar.%u2019 The burning torch was the express symbol of the god of fire; and by the light of this torch, so indispensable for consecrating the %u2018holy water,%u2019 we may easily see whence came one great part of the purifying virtue of %u2018the water of the loud resounding sea,%u2019 which was held to be so efficacious in purging away the guilt and stain of sin,%u2014even from the sun-god having taken refuge in its waters SilverThe following extracts are from Clement%u2019s Gnostic Exposition of the Decalogue SilverNew blood was an imperative necessity; perhaps this new religion, that had given such power of endurance to its votaries, would furnish the needful help. Silver%u201CBut the victory of gnosticism would have been the ruin of Christianity
WishesHector tells us that he was afraid to make so much as a libation to Jupiter before he had washed. WishesPaul%u2019s Cathedral, London, claiming that if a Roman pagan were to be resurrected and brought to St Wishes%u201C%u2018You know then, sirs,%u2019 I said, %u2018that God has said in Isaiah to Jerusalem, %u201CI saved thee in the deluge of Noah.%u201D By this, which God said, was meant that the mystery of saved men appeared in the deluge WishesIn what respect, pray, has this material substance merited an office of so high dignity?%u2019 The authority, I suppose, of the liquid element has to be examined WishesBut it is equally evident that there was no sabbatic regard for the day WishesRoom 100, Bible House,
WishesHatch offers important testimony as to the pagan elements in early exegesis, in these words: WishesBut there followed the celebration of the death of Stephen, the memorial of St WishesStill, comparatively few of the Christian writers even of this period are very valuable as biblical interpreters WishesHardwick describes the tendency to reproduce pagan theories and customs in the early Church as follows: WishesLardner has observed, %u2018choose to write in character.%u2019.. WishesCall out the individual solemnities of the nations and set them out into a row, they will not be able to make up a Pentecost.%u201D
ofA similar faith is found as far back as the latter part of the fourth century, which is noted by Chrysostom in an Epiphany sermon preached at Antioch. ofSt ofThe book of Acts gives a connected history of the recognition and observance of the Sabbath by the Apostles while they were organizing many of the churches spoken of in the New Testament ofElements, Oriental and Occidental, in a curious medley, philosophy and popular superstition%u2014all were collected and used as materials for the building of gnostic systems ofTheir relics are in keeping ofThey were the first to elaborate tradition systematically; they undertook to prove Christianity to be the absolute religion, and by it to hunt down all other religions, including Judaism; but to them the absolute religion, so far as its content was concerned, was identical with the results of religious philosophy, for which a revelation was to be sought as a foundation
ofThe great empire was conscious of present decline and coming decay ofPolydore Virgil says: ofChrysostom is still stronger: %u2018Thou darest not touch the sacred victim with unwashed hands, although pressed by extreme necessity; approach not, therefore, with an unwashed soul.%u2019 To supply the necessary convenience for this rite, a fountain or basin was provided at the church porch at which the faithful washed, as St ofFrom the Italian%u2019s unacquaintance with the rite, one might infer that it was foreign to the country whence all Church ceremonies proceeded, and therefore altogether unchristian and heathenish ofThey followed the popular syncretic tendency, and combined Christianity with the pagan faith in which they had been educated. ofWe have seen that the Greek fathers came to Christianity by way of Neo-Platonism rather than the New Testament
ofWhen the day arrives all are on the watch, and just at the right moment, which invariably occurs at midnight, a cannon is fired off, announcing the descendant of the Nath king upon earth ofThis water was also placed at the entrance of the heathen temples, and those who entered were sprinkled with it.%u201D of%u201CSome persons derive the use of holy water in the churches from the Jews; but that it has been derived from the ancient heathens of Rome is now very generally believed, and, indeed, is warmly defended by the intelligent Ecclesiastics at Rome, on the principle that, as the heathen temples have been turned into Christian churches, so it was well to lay hold of the heathen practices and turn them into Christian customs, thus reconciling the heathen to a change of religion, seeing it did not change their favorite rites and customs ofWhen the fountain of formative Christianity was thus widely and early corrupted, what wonder that the banks of the stream are covered with pagan débris, and that the waters are yet turbid from its sediment? of%u201CFrom Greece the custom came, for Greece esteems ofHow plain and meagre in comparison seemed simple Christianity! There was something remarkably attractive in the breadth and liberality of gnosticism
IBJAA common hope and the struggle for holy living according to the law of God bound these communities together. They were made up of Jews alone, or of Jews and those Gentiles who had been converts to Judaism IBJAThat this water, therefore, is prophetic is from hence manifest. But how it becomes so, this, according to the proverb, is not for every man to know IBJAIt is so easy for the reader to examine these passages, and to compare them with popular notions and with what is said here, that I shall be content with the following summary of facts touching Sunday observance in the New Testament: IBJAFor this reason he named the swine, as much as to say, %u2018Thou shalt not join thyself to men who resemble swine,%u2019 for when they live in pleasure they forget their Lord; but when they come to want they acknowledge the Lord IBJARomulo and St IBJAAt all events, there is not a word in Scripture to support the reasons adduced by Justin for Sunday observance.
SilverThough sadly weakened and corrupted by these influences, Christianity was a growing power in the empire SilverAfter an interval of two days still more sacrifices, shows, and %u201Cprocessions%u201D followed SilverCHAPTER VIII. SilverBy the opening of the fourth century, Christianity had gained such influence and standing that, although it had no claims as an ethnic religion, it was too promising a waif to be longer unnoticed SilverFor there is a fountain in a subterranean dwelling from which the prophetess drinks; and on certain established nights after many sacred rites have been previously performed, and she has drunk of the fountain, she delivers oracles, but is not visible to those that are present SilverChrist presented love for God, for truth, and for man, as the mainspring of action in all religious living