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having gained him over by soft words and by numerous gifts, persuaded him to lead the Goths to embrace conformity in religion with the emperor. He accomplished his purpose by assuring him that there existed no difference between them in point of doctrine, and that the disputes in the church had originated from the ambition of a few individuals. Hence it is that unto this day the Goths say that the Father is greater than the Son ; but they do not say that the Son is a creature, although they admit those who hold this communion. Hence they have not utterly abandoned the doctrines of their fathers. When Urfila persuaded them to hold communion with Eudoxius and Valens, he assured them that there existed no difference between them in point of doctrine, but that vain altercations had produced dissonance of opinion.
CHAP. 1.--Piety Of THE EMPEROR GRATIAN.
The conduct and the fate of Julian clearly exhibit how long the Lord God bears with those who rise up against him ; and how he takes vengeance on those who abuse his long-suffering. Mercy and justice are, as it were, the two scales of the balance in which he weighs the actions of men. When the crimes of any one are so great as to preponderate over mercy, the equilibrium of the balance is restored by the exercise of the vengeance which is demanded by justice.
Gratian, the son of Valentinian, and the nephew of Valens, obtained possession of the whole empire. He had been raised to the empire of Europe after his father's death, and had previously been associated with him in the government. After the death of Valens, he added Asia and the rest of Libya to his dominions.
CHAP. II.-RETURN OF THE BISHOPS.
GRATIAN immediately manifested the piety with which he, was imbued, and consecrated the first-fruits of his empire to
God. He enacted a lawl enjoining that the pastors who had been banished should be restored to their flocks, and that the churches should be given up to those who held communion with Damasis, who was the bishop of Rome, and highly celebrated on account of the sanctity of his life ; for he was ready to say and do everything in defence of the apostolical doctrines, He had succeeded Liberius in the government of the church. Gratian sent Sapor, a renowned military chief, to carry this law into execution, to drive away from the churches, as wild beasts, those who preached the blasphemies of Arius, and to restore the church to the faithful pastors, and to the holy flocks. This law was executed in all the provinces without any opposition. In Antioch, however, which is the metropolis of the East, many disputes arose in consequence.
CHAP. III.-CONTENTION OF PAULINUS.—NEW DOCTRINES INTRODUCED BY APOLLINARIS.-WISDOM AND PIETY OF MELITIUS.
Those who adhered to the apostolical doctrines were, as we have already stated, divided into two parties. One party had seceded from detestation of the perfidy of the Arians immediately after the insidious machinations which they had formed against the great Eusebius, and had assembled apart under the pastoral care of Paulinus. It was not till after the ordination of Euzoius that the other party, who were then ruled by Melitius, separated from the impious Arians. Besides these
separatists, Apollinaris of Laodicea had made himself the head of another party. He at first appeared to adhere to piety, and to defend the apostolical doctrines; but it soon became evident that he was hostile to these principles. He advanced very corrupt hypotheses respecting the Divine nature, which he represented as comprising degrees of perfection ; and he had the
l boldness to declare that the mysterious dispensation of redemption is imperfect; and that the reasoning soul, whose office it is to guide the body, has no part in salvation. He said that the Word, who is God, did not at his incarnation assume this principle of our nature, and that it was neither honoured nor redeemed by Him. Thus the body, which is earthy, is supposed to be revered by invisible powers, while the soul which was made in the image of God is considered inferior to it, being regarded as immersed in sin and dishonour. The deplorable blindness of his understanding led him to circulate many other errors. Sometimes he agreed in the doctrine that Christ assumed flesh of the holy virgin ; at others, he said that His human body descended with the Word from heaven ; and, at other times, he said that the Word took flesh without assuming our nature. He mixed up with the Divine promises fables and idle fictions, which are not worth recounting here. By these false doctrines he not only seduced his own party, but also deluded some who belonged to ours. When, at a subsequent period, those whom he had deceived were led to contrast the weakness of their sect with the majesty and numerical superiority of the church, they all, with few exceptions, returned to the church, and entered into communion with her; yet they retained their impious sentiments. This is the root whence has sprung an evil doctrine now prevalent in the church. Those who hold this doctrine affirm that the human and Divine natures of Christ form but one nature ;' they attribute the capacity of suffering to the Divine nature of the only begotten Son, and teach many other errors which have excited great controversy among the laity and the clergy. But all the above incidents did not occur till after the period at present under consideration.
| This law of Gratian is extant in the 16th book of the Theodosian Code, and is entitled “ De Fide Catholicâ ;” but it is there falsely attributed to Theodosius himself.
When Sapor, the commander, arrived in Antioch, and proclaimed the mandate of the emperor, Paulinus promised to communicate on the subject with Damasis. Apollinaris also made the same promise ; but this he did in order to conceal the heterodoxy of his opinions. St. Melitius remained a quiet spectator of their contention. The wise Flavius, who ranked at that period among the presbyters, addressed Paulinus in the following manner, in the presence of Sapor : “ If you are in communion, O friend, with Damasis, prove to us clearly that
your doctrines are in accordance with his. He declared that in the Trinity there is one substance, and three persons ; you, on the contrary, deny that there are three persons in the Trinity. If you agree with him in doctrine, you shall receive authority over the churches.” Having thus convicted
1 Theodoret alludes to the heretics who were called Theopaschitæ or Deipassiani, from holding that the Deity was capable of suffering.
and silenced Paulinus, he next addressed Apollinaris. “ I am amazed, O friend,” said he, " at the shameless manner in which you have opposed truth. You clearly understand that Damasis asserts that God the Word assumed the nature of complete humanity. You, however, maintain a contrary doctrine. You say that the soul is excluded from salvation. If this be a false accusation, prove it to be so by denouncing the innovations which are attributed to you ; embrace the doctrine of Damasis, and receive possession of the churches.” With these words the wise Flavius closed his discourse. Then Melitius, the mildest of men, addressed Paulinus in a kind and affectionate manner : “ As God,” said he, “committed to me the care of this flock, and as you have received the charge of another, and as our respective sheep hold the same doctrines of religion, let us, O friend, unite our flocks ; let us throw aside all contests for superiority, and tend with equal assiduity the sheep intrusted to us. If the episcopal chair of this city be to us a matter of contention, let us place the holy gospel upon it, and let us seat ourselves on each side of it. If I die first, you, O friend, will become the only ruler of the flock : but if your death occur before mine, I will, as far as I am able, tend the flock alone.” Paulinus, however, refused to comply! with the offer so kindly and affectionately made by Melitius. The general, after reflecting on what had been stated, gave up the churches 2 to the holy Melitius. Paulinus continued to rule those who had from the beginning separated themselves from the rest of the flock.
CHAP. IV.-EUSEBIUS, BISHOP OF SAMOSATA. APOLLINARIS, on finding himself excluded from the government of the churches, publicly preached the new doctrines which he had devised, and openly appeared as the originator of a new heresy. He chiefly fixed his residence at Laodicea. He had previously ordained as bishop in Antioch, a man named Vitalis, who possessed many virtues, and who had been educated in the doctrines of the apostles, but who had after
1 Valesius sees reason to distrust this statement of Theodoret; as also does Baronius in his Annals, A. D. 378.
2 Those churches, namely, which the Arian bishop Euzoius had obtained at Antioch. This was done in accordance with the rescript of Gratian.
wards imbibed heretical opinions. Diodorus, of whom mention has been already made as having saved the vessel of the church in the midst of a furious tempest, was raised by the holy Melitius to the bishopric of Tarsus, and intrusted with the superintendence of the whole province of Cilicia. Melitius committed the bishopric of Apamea to John, the descendant of an illustrious family, who was rendered more conspicuous by his own merits than by those of his ancestors, and who was celebrated for the purity of his doctrine and of his life. He had ruled in the assemblies of the faithful during the times of persecution. His fellow-labourer, Stephen, who also deserved the highest praise, was sent to other scenes of conflict ; for when Melitius was informed that in the city of Germanicia many persons had been corrupted by the pernicious dogmas of Eudoxius, he sent him as a skilful physician to heal the dis
Stephen was well versed in all the learning of the Greeks, and had also been nourished in the divine doctrines. The hopes which had been formed of him did not prove fallacious ; for by his spiritual teaching he changed wolves into sheep. The great Eusebius, on his return from exile, appointed Acacius, who enjoyed a high degree of fame, to rule the church of Bercea ; and Theodotus, whose religious course of life is celebrated even to this day, he raised to the bishopric of Jerapole. He also ordained Eusebius bishop of Chalcidia, and likewise our own lord, Isidore. They were both admirable men, filled with zeal for God. It is also said that he ordained Eulogius to the bishopric of Edessa. Eulogius had zealously defended the doctrines of the apostles; and had been banished with Protogenes to the city of Antinous. The admirable bishop Barses had died before this period. Melitius placed Protogenes, who had shared all the conflicts of Eulogius, in the bishopric of Carras, and sent him as a skilful physician to the city to heal the spiritual diseases of its inhabitants. Lastly, St. Eusebius ordained Maris to the bishopric of Dolica, a small town infected at that period by the Arian
See above, book iii. ch. 19. ? A difficulty arises as to how Eusebius could ordain or consecrate beyond his own province. Baronius supposes that it was by authority committed to him from the synod at Antioch. Valesius thinks that he acted thus by a Divine impulse from the Holy Spirit, which warranted him in disregarding the ordinary canons of the church on account of the exigency and emergency. See above, note on book iv. ch. 13.