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A History Of The Church In Five Books by Theodoret

THUS did this emperor, who was so worthy of the highest praise, endeavour to preserve the purity of the apostolical doctrines. About the same period, Audius, a native of Syria, promulgated some new doctrines. He had devised these depraved doctrines some time previously, but now, for the first time, he made them public. Having never rightly understood these words, “Let us make man in our own image and in our likeness,” he took it for granted that God had a human form and a body consisting of parts. In the holy Scriptures the names of various parts of the human body are often given to the Divine modes of acting; but this is in order to meet the feebleness of men’s minds, and to render the providential care of God more intelligible. To this impiety he added other errors. He adopted some of the foolish opinions of Manes, affirming that God, the Creator of the universe, made neither fire nor darkness. But the members of this and of similar sects keep their opinions concealed. They allege as a reason for having separated from our ecclesiastical assemblies that some among us demand the most hateful usury, and that others carry on an illicit intercourse with unmarried women; while those, they say, who are free from these particular vices, admit all who practise them to communion. Such are the reasons which they advance to account for their schism, and to conceal the blasphemy of their doctrines. But this pretext is full of pride, and is derived from the doctrine of the Pharisees. These latter accused Him who was the Physician of the soul and of the body, and said to the holy apostles, “Why doth your Master eat with publicans and sinners” (Matt. 9). Of such men God thus spoke by the mouth of the prophet: “Those who say, Come not near to me, I am holier than thou, these are the smoke of my fury” (Isa. 65). But this is not the time to dwell upon their folly. I must proceed to the relation of the remainder of the narrative.








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