" But Polycarp said, "To thee I have thought it right to offer an account [of my faith]; for we are taught to give all due honour (which entails no injury upon ourselves) to the powers and authorities which are ordained of God.
For this cause pay ye tribute also; for they are God's ministers, attending continually upon this very thing."
Paul the apostle also says upon this same subject: "Be ye subject to all the higher powers; for there is no power but of God: now those which are have been ordained of God."
Therefore, as to what relates to the honours due to kings or emperors, we have a prescript sufficient, that it behoves us to be in all obedience, according to the apostle's precept,
No doubt the apostle admonishes the Romans
For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God. Whosoever therefore resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God."
Render all the fear that is due to them, all offerings, all customs, all honour, gifts, and taxes.
For his other actings, however, he is rather to be borne with by his flock and those put under him, than accused or made the subject of public detraction; because when any offence is committed in these matters by those put under them, His ordinance is withstood who set them before him, as the apostle says, "Whosoever resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God."
For if rulers are not a terror to a good work, how shall God, who is by nature good, be a terror to him who sins not? "If thou doest evil, be afraid,"
Rom. 13:3 - NIV, NAB - in Cyprian Treatise XII Three Books of Testimonies Against the Jews
In the Epistle of Paul to the Romans: "Wilt thou not be afraid of the power? Do that which is good, and thou shall have praise of it."
And again, in reference to them he says, "For he beareth not the sword in vain; for he is the minister of God, the avenger for wrath to him who does evil."
Who would not prefer the justice of the world, which, as the apostle himself testifies, "beareth not the sword in vain,"
Now, that he spake these words, not in regard to angelical powers, nor of invisible rulers-as some venture to expound the passage-but of those of actual human authorities, [he shows when] he says, "For this cause pay ye tribute also: for they are God's ministers, doing service for this very thing."
Then he goes on also to show how he wishes you to be subject to the powers, bidding you pay "tribute to whom tribute is due, custom to whom custom,"
And it teaches us to render all things to all,
Rom. 13:7 - NIV, NAB - in Cyprian Treatise XII Three Books of Testimonies Against the Jews
Also to the Romans: "Render to all what is due: tribute to whom tribute is due, custom to whom custom, fear to whom fear, honour to whom honour; owe no man anything, except to love another."
and, "Those who are in the flesh cannot please God: "
" But the cavillers did not know even this, as the apostle says, "that he who loveth his brother worketh not evil; "for this, "Thou shalt not kill, thou shalt not commit adultery, thou shalt not steal; and if there be any other commandment, it is comprehended in the word, Thou shall love thy neighbour as thyself."
"who hates evil, having love unfeigned; for he that loveth another fulfilleth the law."
How much sooner does he who carves a Mars out of a lime-tree, fasten together a chest! No art but is either mother or kinswoman of some neighbour
For this is God's command, that l you owe nothing to any one but the pledge of love, which God has commanded by Christ.
all the precepts which afterwards sprouted forth when given through Moses; that is, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God from thy whole heart and out of thy whole soul; Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself;
Very properly, then, did he sum up the entire teaching of the Creator in this precept of His: "Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself."
Are we to paint ourselves out that our neighbours may perish? Where, then, is (the command), "Thou shall love thy neighbour as thyself? "
But if He had descended from another Father, He never would have made use of the first and greatest commandment of the law; but He would undoubtedly have endeavoured by all means to bring down a greater one than this from the perfect Father, so as not to make use of that which had been given by the God of the law. And Paul in like manner declares, "Love is the fulfilling of the law: "
Whose "love worketh no ill to his neighhour,"
neither injuring nor revenging ever, but, in a word, doing good to all according to the image of God. "Love is," then, "the fulfilling of the law; "
and," Love worketh no ill to his neighbour."
"For blessed are those that have seen the Lord,"
The night is far spent, the day is at hand. Let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and put on the armour of light."
For the apostle decrees that, "putting off the works of darkness, we should put on the armour of light, walking honestly as in the day, not spending our time in rioting and drunkenness, in chambering and wantonness."
Non enim "carnis curam gerere ad concupiscentias" didicimus; "honeste autem tanquam in die," Christo, et Dominica lucida vitae institutione, "ambulantes, non in comessationibus et ebrietatibus, non in cubilibus et impudicitiis, non in litibus et contentionibus."
Nay, but this whole world is the one house of all; in which world it is more the heathen, who is found in darkness, whom the grace of God enlightens, than the Christian, who is already in God's light.
Let us walk honestly, as in the day; not in rioting and drunkenness, not in lusts and wantonness, not in strifes and jealousy."
that is opposed to the Holy Spirit, then we believe that when the fourth watch impendeth, when "the night is far spent, and the day is at hand,"
But when He is transfigured, His face also shines as the sun, that He may be manifested to the children of light, who have put off the works of darkness, and put on the armour of light,
We shall, however, treat of prayer in due course by and by. But we ought to have works that cry aloud, as becoming "those who walk in the day."
Whether, moreover, the apostle had any acquaintance with xerophagies-(the apostle) who had repeatedly practised greater rigours, "hunger, and thirst, and fists many," who had forbidden "drunkennesses and revellings"
Which alliance the apostle withal was aware of; and hence, after premising, "Not in drunkenness and revels," he adjoined, "nor in couches and lusts."
and if costly dinners, about these we have received a commandment to keep away from them, not to be burdened by carousing and drunkenness and the cares of life;
and are no longer the children of darkness or night, but have become the sons of day, and walk honestly as in the day;
"But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts thereof."
For the divine apostle most beautifully counsels us "to put on Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the lusts of the flesh."
On the ground of continence the priests likewise of the famous Egyptian bull will judge the "infirmity" of Christians. Blush, O flesh, who hast "put on"
And do not be surprised if we speak of a perfect soul as the clothing of the body (which, on account of the Word of God and His wisdom, is now named incorruption), when Jesus Christ Himself, who is the Lord and Creator of the soul, is said to be the clothing of the saints, according to the language of the apostle, "Put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ."
Those, therefore, who imitate Christ, imitate Him earnestly. For those who have "put on Christ"
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