But they that endure to the end, the same shall be saved. And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven; "
and where is Thy promise? And God said: First will I make an earthquake for the fall of four-footed beasts and of men; and when you see that brother gives up brother to death, and that children shall rise up against their parents, and that a woman forsakes her own husband, and when nation shall rise up against nation in war, then will you know that the end is near.
Matt. 24:2 - NIV, NAB - in Cyprian Treatise XII Three Books of Testimonies Against the Jews
Also in the Gospel the Lord says: "There shall not be left in the temple one stone upon another that shall not be thrown down."
they might see Him who should teach them that the place chosen of God, in which it was suitable that victims should be offered to God, is his Wisdom; and that on the other hand they might hear that this place, which seemed chosen for a time, often harassed as it had been by hostile invasions and plunderings, was at last to be wholly destroyed.
Accordingly, therefore, prophesying concerning the temple, He said: `See ye these buildings? Verily I say to you, There shall not be left here one stone upon another which shall not be taken away; and this generation shall not pass until the destruction begin. For they shall come, and shall sit here, and shall besiege it, and shall slay your children here.'
when the kingdom of God, which we pray may arrive, tends unto the consummation of the age?
neither ought their existence to surprise us, for it was foretold that they should come to pass;
nor what the Saviour in the Gospels
Matt. 24:4 - NIV, NAB - in Cyprian Treatise XI Exhortation to Martyrdom Addressed to Fortunatus
And He shall send His angels with a great trumpet, and they shall gather together His elect from the four winds, from the heights of heaven, even into the farthest bounds thereof."
in Jesus, which is "the only name given under heaven whereby we must be saved," death is reasonably despised, although, if they continue as they are, they cannot be saved, because they have not sought the Lord after the invocation of His name upon them,-even as those who, on account of false Christs, perchance have refused to believe, of whom the Lord says, "Take heed that no man lead you into error. For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ, and shall lead many into error."
Matt. 24:4 - NIV, NAB - in Archelaus Acts of the Disputation with the Heresiarch Manes
If they shall say unto you, Behold, he is in the desert; go not forth: if they shall say, Behold, he is in the secret chambers; believe it not."
1. See that no one cause thee to err
"Many," He says, "shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ, and shall deceive many." And afterwards He added: "But take ye heed; behold, I have foretold you all things."
4. for when lawlessness increaseth, they shall hate and persecute and betray one another,
And, `Many false Christs and false apostles shall arise, and shall deceive many of the faithful.'
false prophets and corrupters shall be multiplied, and the sheep shall be turned into wolves, and love shall be turned into hate;
But as the conquering power of things evil is on the increase-which is the characteristic of the last times
As God, then, is a fire, and the angels a flame of fire, and all the saints are fervent in spirit, so, on the contrary, those who have fallen away from the love of God are undoubtedly said to have cooled in their affection for Him, and to have become cold. For the Lord also says, that, "because iniquity has abounded, the love of many will grow cold."
(Then) iniquity shall abound, as the Lord also says: "Because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold."
For these are false Christs, and false prophets, and false apostles, deceivers and corrupters, portions of foxes, the destroyers of the herbs of the vineyards: "for whose sake the love of many will wax cold. But he that endureth stedfast to the end, the same shall be saved.
and, "Because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold; "and, "There shall come false Christs and false prophets, and shall show signs in the heaven, so as, if it were possible, to deceive the elect: "
For the end will come if the salt loses its savour, and ceases to salt and preserve the earth, since it is clear that if iniquity is multiplied and love waxes cold upon the earth,
says He, "ye shall yourselves be saved."
the faith)? For, of course, that (infirmity) is more capable of excuse which has fallen in battle, than (that) which (has fallen) in the bed-chamber; (that) which has succumbed on the rack, than (that) which (has succumbed) on the bridal bed; (that) which has yielded to cruelty, than (that) which (has yielded) to appetite; that which has been overcome groaning, than (that) which (has been overcome) in heat. But the former they excommunicate, because it has not "endured unto the end: "
And who will not be filled with wonder, when he goes back in thought to Him who then taught and said, "This Gospel shall be preached throughout the whole world, for a testimony against them and the Gentiles,"
Matt. 24:14 - NIV, NAB - in Victorinus Commentary on the Apocalypse of the Blessed John
For the Lord says, "This Gospel shall be preached throughout the whole world for a testimony to all nations, and then shall come the end."
to show himself as Christ, as the Lord also declares: "But when ye shall see the abomination of desolation, which has been spoken of by Daniel the prophet, standing in the holy place (let him that readeth understand), then let those who are in Judea flee into the mountains; and he who is upon the house-top, let him not come down to take anything out of his house: for there shall then be great hardship, such as has not been from the beginning of the world until now, nor ever shall be."
For if what Daniel prophesied concerning the end has been confirmed by the Lord, when He said, "When ye shall see the abomination of desolation, which has been spoken of by Daniel the prophet"
And woe unto them that are with child, and to them that give suck, in those days! for then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world. And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved."
Matt. 24:15 - NIV, NAB - in Victorinus Commentary on the Apocalypse of the Blessed John
Thence here he places, and by and by here he renews, that of which the Lord, admonishing His churches concerning the last times and their dangers, says: "But when ye shall see the contempt which is spoken of by Daniel the prophet standing in the holy place, let him who readeth understand."
' said I, `have ascertained beyond doubt that God is much rather displeased with the sacrifices which you offer, the thee of sacrifices having now passed away; and because ye will not acknowledge that the thee for offering victims is now past, therefore the temple shall be destroyed, and the abomination of desolation
Et rursus: "Vae praegnantibus et lactantibus in illis diebus."
most of all unsuitable, as being perilous to faith! For why did the Lord foretell a "woe to them that are with child, and them that give suck,"
not reflecting that the "woe" (denounced) "on such as are with child, and are giving suck,"
were thus predicting partly that wrath from all nations which after His ascension came upon those who believed in Him, with the movement of the whole earth against the Church; and partly the fact that, when He comes from heaven with His mighty angels, the whole earth shall be shaken, as He Himself declares, "There shall be a great earthquake, such as has not been from the beginning."
And therefore, when in the end the Church shall be suddenly caught up from this, it is said, "There shall be tribulation such as has not been since the beginning, neither shall be."
, to cast downwards,-a word which has been, as we have already remarked, improperly translated into Latin by the phrase "constitutio mun-di," as in the Gospel according to John, where the Saviour says, "And there will be tribulation in those days, such as was not since the beginning of the world; "
Would it not, then, be absurd to forbid marriage unions, seeing that we expect that after us there will be martyrs, and those who shall oppose the evil one, for whose sake also the Word promised that He would shorten those days?
For as the lightning cometh out of the east, and shineth even to the west, so also shall the coming of the Son of man be."
For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall show great signs and wonders; so that, if it were possible, even the very elect shall be deceived."
and will exhibit "great signs and wonders, insomuch that, if it were possible, he shall deceive the very elect."
because when He declared that many would come and "show great signs and wonders,"
And with all these he will work signs and terrible wonders, false wonders and not true, in order to deceive his impious equals. For if it were possible, he would seduce even the elect
Matt. 24:24 - NIV, NAB - in Archelaus Acts of the Disputation with the Heresiarch Manes
For we are given to understand beforehand that the devil himself is to be transformed into an angel of light, and that his servants are to make their appearance in similar guise, and that they are to work signs and wonders, insomuch that, if it were possible, the very elect should be deceived.
and shall do signs and wonders,
Ye shall know them by their fruits; take care of them. For false Christs and false prophets shall arise and shall deceive many."
These are they concerning whom the Lord declared His mind with bitterness and severity, saying that "they are false Christs and false teachers; "
went no further than Simon! For there will be, as the Lord said, false apostles, false prophets,
the more ought he to revere him. For we ought to receive every one whom the Master of the house sends to be over His household,
The more, therefore, you see the bishop silent, the more do you reverence him. For we ought to receive every one whom the Master of the house sends to be over His household,
Moreover our Lord, who is the truth, compared the power of His own glorious advent to lightning, in the words, "For as the lightning shineth from the height of heaven even to its height again, so will the coming of the Son of man be."
"For as the lightning cometh out of the east, and shineth even unto the west, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be. For wheresoever the carcase is, there will the eagles be gathered together."
of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, the Son of God, from heaven, for whom we have hoped; who shall bring forth fire and all just judgment against those who have refused to believe in Him? For the Lord says, "For as the lightning cometh out of the east, and shineth even unto the west, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be; for wheresoever the carcase is, there will the eagles be gathered together."
because, "as the lightning which lighteneth from the east and is seen even to the west, so shall the coming of the Son of man be: "
Inasmuch as then, "wheresoever the carcase is, there shall also the eagles be gathered together,"
the belief that everything was made from nothing will be impressed upon us by that ultimate dispensation of God which will bring back all things to nothing. For "the very heaven shall be rolled together as a scroll; '"
180 And deeply moved are the high air's powers,
The stars of heaven shall fall,
6. And then shall appear the signs of the truth;
first, the sign of an out-spreading
8. Then shall the world see the Lord coming upon the clouds of heaven.
and I saw the Son of God with glory and great power coming down to the earth.
Then shall the earth be cleansed from sin, and all the earth shall be filled with a sweet smell, because I am about to come down upon the earth; and then shall come forth the great and venerable sceptre, with thousands of angels worshipping it, as I said before; and then shall appear the sign of the Son of man from the heaven with power and great glory.
And He says again, "Then shall the Son of man send His angels, and they shall gather together His elect from the four winds of heaven."
Remember, Lord, Thy Church, to deliver it from all evil and to make it perfect in Thy love, and gather it from the four winds, sanctified for Thy kingdom which Thou hast prepared for it;
"So likewise ye," (He adds), "when ye shall see all these things come to pass, know ye that the kingdom of heaven is nigh at hand."
When and as He pleases He will do all things, and none of the things determined by Him shall pass away.
nay, it shall come to nothing along with the earth itself, with which it was made in the beginning. "Heaven and earth shall pass away,"
Himself bears witness that the world was created; and again, when He says, "Heaven and earth shall pass away, but My word shall not pass away,"
For we desire to listen to Him who said: "Heaven and earth shall pass away, but My words shall not pass away."
But if our opponents say, How then is it, if the universe be not destroyed, that the Lord says that "heaven and earth shall pass away; "
When, and as He pleases, He will do all things, and none of the things determined by Him shall pass away.
and that "this age shall have a consummation," and also to the fulfilment of the saying, "Heaven and earth shall pass away,"
should it not be thrice, and repeatedly in it, since punishments, in respect of this life, and of the sins committed in it, shall be rendered to it only by the method of transmigration? But if this be granted as a consequence, perhaps there will never be a time when a soul shall not undergo transmigration: for always because of its former sins will it dwell in the body; and so there will be no place for the corruption of the world, at which "the heaven and the earth shall pass away."
and slain by the husbandmen, and avenged by the Father. He is also ignorant of the last day and hour, which is known to the Father only.
Et rursus: "Sicut autem erat in diebus Noe, erant nubentes, et nuptui dantes, aedificantes, et plantantes; et sicut erat in diebus Lot, ita erit adventus Filii hominis."
Et quod hoc non dicit ad genies, ostendit, cum subjungit: "Num cum venerit Filius hominis, inveniet fidem in terra? "
So we find it thus said in Matthew, "As were the days of Noah so shall also be the coming of the Son of man; for as they were in the days of the flood," etc.
For there are also differences of millstones, so that one of them may be, so to call it, the millstone of a man, and another that of an ass; and that is human, about which it is written, "Two women shall be grinding at the mill; one is taken and one is left; "
"Watch ye therefore, for ye know not in what day your Lord shall come."
and for this cause did the Lord command His disciples to be on the watch.
For He not only figuratively calls the resurrection of Christ rising from sleep; but to the descent of the Lord into the flesh he also applies the figurative term sleep. The Saviour Himself enjoins, "Watch; "
but be ye ready, for ye know not the hour in which our Lord cometh.
), good and wise, whom the Lord sets over His household, to give them their meat in due season? Blessed is that servant whom his Lord, when He cometh, shall find so doing."
And, in like manner, all that is paid out to others, or expended by order of the emperor, should be entered in its own place by itself in the reckoning; and that servant should be faithful and prudent, so that his lord may rejoice that he has set him over his goods,
not workmen "drunken" and "faithless; "
And the Lord of that servant shall come in an hour when he doth not look for Him, and in a day when he is not aware, and shall cut him in sunder, and shall assign his unfaithful part with the hypocrites.'
" Having spoken these words, he said to me, "Let us go, and after two days let us come and clean these stones, and cast them into the building; for all things around the tower must be cleaned, lest the Master come suddenly
Of whom also did the Lord say: "But if the evil servant shall say in his heart, My lord delayeth his coming, and shall begin to smite the man-servants and maidens, and to eat and drink and be drunken; the lord of that servant shall come in a day that he looketh not for him, and in an hour that he is not aware of, and shall cut him asunder, and appoint him his portion with the unbelievers."
And again, "But if the servant say in his heart, The Lord delayeth, and begin to beat his fellow-servants, and to eat, and drink, and to be drunken, his Lord will come in a day on which he does not expect Him, and shall cut him in sunder, and appoint his portion with the hypocrites."
Thou shalt not be an hypocrite, lest thy "portion be with them."
Go to the Chronological List of all Early Christian Writings
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