But the apostle himself also, being one who had been formed in a womb, and had issued thence, wrote to us, and confessed in his Epistle to the Philippians that "to live in the flesh was the fruit of [his] work; "
See also whether the following words of Paul can apply to those who, although not willingly, yet in accordance with the will of Him who subjected them, and in hope of the promises, were made subject to vanity, when he says, "For I could wish to be dissolved," or "to return and be with Christ, which is far better."
Phil. 1:4 - NIV, NAB - in Syriac Second Epistle of Ignatius to the Ephesians
For, so long as there is not implanted in you any one lust which is able to torment you, behold, ye live in God. I rejoice in you, and offer supplication
of true love [as displayed by God], and have accompanied, as became you, those who were bound in chains, the fitting ornaments of saints, and which are indeed the diadems of the true elect of God and our Lord; and because the strong root of your faith, spoken of in days
But I have neither seen nor heard of any such thing among you, in the midst of whom the blessed Paul laboured, and who are commended
with the Philippians, to whom the apostle speaks, calling them "fellow-partakers of joy,"
"Wherefore I pray," says the apostle, "that your love may abound yet more and more, in knowledge and in all judgment, that ye may approve things that are excellent."
Therefore, since the Jews still contend that the Christ is not yet come, whom we have in so many ways approved
ing his Creator; bearing what came second, as the first, and most clearly teaching that it is possible for the gnostic to make an excellent use of all circumstances, And that ancient achievements are proposed as images for our correction, the apostle shows, when he says, "So that my bonds in Christ are become manifest in all the palace, and to all the rest; and several of the brethren in the Lord, waxing confident by my bonds, are much more bold to speak the word of God without fear,"
When (the apostle) mentions the several motives of those who were preaching the gospel, how that some, "waxing confident by his bonds, were more fearless in speaking the word," while others "preached Christ even out of envy and strife, and again others out of good-will" many also "out of love," and certain "out of contention," and some "in rivalry to himself,"
Therefore, says he, it matters not to me "whether it be in pretence or in truth that Christ is preached,"
For as to what some say, as if it tended to favour heretics, that the Apostle Paul declared, "Only every way, whether in pretence or in truth, let Christ be preached,"
But to what they allege and say on behalf of the heretics, that the apostle said, "Whether in pretence or in truth, Christ is preached,"
And if the requirements of Gentile friendships and of kindly offices call you, why not go forth clad in your own armour; (and) all the more, in that (you have to go) to such as are strangers to the faith? so that between the handmaids of God and of the devil there may be a difference; so that you may be an example to them, and they may be edified in you; so that (as the apostle says) "God may be magnified in your body."
I bid you, most blessed and most beloved brethren, ever farewell in the Lord, and always and everywhere remember me.
Remembering which truth, the blessed Apostle Paul in his epistle lays it down, saying, "To me to live is Christ, and to die is gain; "
Moreover, also, the blessed Apostle Paul exclaimed, and said, "To me to live is Christ, and to die is gain."
You long for the goal, and the stage, and the dust, and the place of combat! I would have you answer me this question: Can we not live without pleasure, who cannot but with pleasure die? For what is our wish but the apostle's, to leave the world, and be taken up into the fellowship of our Lord?
and received into the Lord's presence, which was the desire even of an apostle?
Shall the servant of God yearn after heirs, who has disinherited himself from the world? And is it to be a reason for a man to repeat marriage, if from his first (marriage) he have no children? And shall he thus have, as the first benefit (resulting therefrom), this, that he should desire longer life, when the apostle himself is in haste to be "with the Lord? "
Some such desire, I apprehend, was indicated by him who said, "I am in a strait betwixt two, having a desire to depart, and to be with Christ, which is far better; "
Wherefore the creation was made subject to vanity, not willingly, but he who does unwillingly the things of the body does what he does for the sake of hope, as if we should say that Paul desired to remain in the flesh, not willingly, but on account of hope. For though he thought it better
Behold another joy of ours, that, in the duty of your episcopate, although in the meantime you have been, owing to the condition of the times, divided from your brethren, you have frequently confirmed the confessors by your letters; that you have ever afforded necessary supplies from your own just acquisitions; that in all things you have always shown yourself in some sense present; that in no part of your duty have you hung behind as a deserter.
Do you frequently be urgent in supplications, and assist my prayers by yours, that the Lord's mercy favouring us may soon restore both the priest
If we please Him in this present world, we shall receive also the future world, according as He has promised to us that He will raise us again from the dead, and that if we live
If there is therefore any consolation in Christ, if any comfort of love, if any communion of spirit, if any bowels and mercies, fulfil ye my joy, that ye may be of the same mind, having the same love, unanimous, thinking one thing. And if he is offered on the sacrifice and service of faith, joying and rejoicing"
For the things which are seen are temporal"-he is speaking of troubles; "but the things which are not seen are eternal"-he is promising rewards. But writing in bonds to the Thessalonians,
Go to the Chronological List of all Early Christian Writings
Please buy the CD to support the site, view it without ads, and get bonus stuff!