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THE LETTER OF ST. CLEMENT TO THE CORINTHIANS1 IIHE CHURCH OF GOD which dwells as a pilgrim in Rome to the Church of God in pilgrimage at Corinth -to you who have been called and made holy by the will of God through our Lord Jesus Christ. May you be filled with grace and peace from Almighty God through Jesus Christ. 2 Chapter 1 Dear brothers, because of the sudden misfortunes and calamities which have fallen upon us, one after another,l we have been, we confess, somewhat tardy in turning our attention to the matters in dispute, and especially to the abominable and unholy schism, among you.2 It is a thing alien and foreign to those who have been called by God. It was started by a handful of impetuous and self-opinionated persons. It has been inflamed to such a degree of madness that your name, once so well known and loved and revered by all, has suffered a grave reproach. 2 There was a time when everyone who lived among you thought highly of the I The title, not forming part of the original letter, varies in the manuscripts : 'To the Cormthians,' 'Epistle of Clement to the Corinthians,' 'Clement to the Corinthians.' 2 This salutation has noticeable resemblances to that of St .Paul's First Epistle to the Corinthians and to St. Peter's First Epistle, and may have been the model for that used for the Martyrdom of Polycarp. I This is understood to refer to the recent persecution under Domitian. A.D. 95 2 One may note that a firm stand is taken at the start. 9 10 SAINT CLEMENT OF ROME full virtue and firmness of your faith, admired the sweet reasonableness of your Christian piety, heralded abroad your reputation for unbounded hospitality, and praised the fullness and soundness of your knowledge.3 3 You did all things without respect of persons and walked in accordance with the commands of God-subject to those in office and properly respectful to the presbyters of your community. You educated the minds of your young men to moderation and modesty. You exhorted girls to do their duty with a blameless , modest, and pure conscience. And you taught married women to love their husbands as they should, to be subject to them according to the rule of obedience, and to manage their homes with piety and much wisdom. Chapter 2 1 Everyone of you used to walk in humbleness of mind, without boasting, preferring to obey rather than to command, to give rather than to receive,l satisfied with the rations2 served by Christ. You gave heed to His words; you were careful to keep them in your hearts; His sufferings were before your eyes. 2 Thus to all were granted a deep and radiant peace and an untiring longing to do good, and there came upon all an abundant outpouring of the Holy Spirit. 3 You were filled with holy counsel and in pious zeal and reverent confidence you stretched forth your hands to Almighty God, beseeching Him to be merciful to your involuntary shortcomings. 4 Day and night you kept up your efforts 3 'Knowledge' (Greek gllosis) means a deep understanding of the mysteries of the Christian faith. The word is much favored by St. Paul. I Cf. Acts. 20.35. 2 The Greek word elJ/!odia (literally 'things for the journey,' Latin viaticum) was especially appropriate in military usage. THE LETTER TO THE CORINTHIANS 11 on behalf of the whole brotherhood, so that, with mercy and compassion, the full number of His chosen ones might be saved. 5 You were pure and simple and forgiving toward one another. 6 All sedition and schism of any sort was abominated by you. You wept for the failings of your neighbors and you reckoned as your own their shortcomings. 7 You were without regret for' any good you had done and were ready to 'undertake any kind of honorable service.'3 8 Adorned with the habits of virtue and reverence, you performed all your duties in the fear of God. The commandments and ordinances of the Lord 'were written on the tablets of your heart.'4 Chapter 3 1 All glory and greatness was granted you/ and what the Scripture said was fulfilled: 'My beloved ate and drank, and was enlarged and grew fat and kicked.'2 2 From this came jealousy and envy,3 quarreling and dissension, persecution and disorder, war and captivity. 3 Thus the...

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Additional Information

ISBN
9780813211015
Related ISBN
9780813215495
MARC Record
OCLC
867796587
Pages
426
Launched on MUSE
2013-05-20
Language
English
Open Access
No
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