Saturday, November 13, 2010

Patristic Exegesis


Since therefore it is impossible to learn anything true concerning religion from your teachers, who by their mutual disagreement have furnished you with sufficient proof of their own ignorance, I consider it reasonable to recur to our progenitors (ancestors), who both in point of time have by a great way the precedence of your teachers, and who have taught us nothing from their own private fancy, nor differed with one another, nor attempted to overturn one another’s positions, but without wrangling and contention received from God the knowledge which also they taught to us.
Justin Martyr, Hortatory Address to the Greeks,
Chapter VIII.



Since therefore it is impossible to learn anything true concerning religion from your teachers, who by their mutual disagreement have furnished you with sufficient proof of their own ignorance,

ie, the Protestant pastors.



I consider it reasonable to recur to our progenitors (ancestors),

ie, the Church Fathers.



who both in point of time have by a great way the precedence of your teachers,

ie, the antiquity of the Church Fathers versus Protestantism's lack thereof.



and who have taught us nothing from their own private fancy,

Contra Protestantism's innate tendency of turning the individual believer into the sole authority & ultimate interpreter of Holy Writ...



nor differed with one another,

ie, the Patristic Consensus versus the plethora of various rival Protestant views, opinions, and interpretations.



nor attempted to overturn one another’s positions,

As opposed to what the founders of countless Protestant denominations have done throughout the centuries...



but without wrangling and contention received from God the knowledge which also they taught to us.

ie, the chain of transmission of Holy Tradition throughout consecutive or successive generations. (2 Timothy 2:2)

1 comments:

Ikonophile said...

/sarc begin

What? The Church Fathers never agreed on ANYTHING. Obviously Justin Martyr didn't know about the rest of the factitious and divided early Church that he tried to speak for.

/sarc end

John

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