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A History Of The Church In Seven Books by Socrates

NO sooner had the emperor departed from Antioch, than the Saracens who had before been in alliance with the Romans, revolted from them, being led by Mavia their queen, whose husband was then dead. All the regions of the East therefore were at that time ravaged by the Saracens: but their fury was repressed by the interference of Divine Providence in the manner I am about to describe. A person named Moses, a Saracen by birth, who led a monastic life in the desert, became exceedingly eminent for his piety, faith, and miracles. Mavia the queen of the Saracens was therefore desirous that this person should be constituted bishop over her nation, and promised on this condition to terminate the war. The Roman generals considering that a peace founded on such terms would be extremely advantageous, gave immediate directions for its ratification. Moses was accordingly seized, and brought from the desert to Alexandria, in order to his being initiated in the sacerdotal functions: but on his presentation for that purpose to Lucius, who at that time presided over the churches in that city, lie refused to be ordained by him, protesting against it in these words: “I account myself indeed unworthy of the sacred office; but if the exigences of the state require my bearing it, it shall not be by Lucius laying his hand on me, for it has been filled with blood.” When Lucius told him that it was his duty to learn from him the principles of religion, and not to utter reproachful language; Moses replied, “Matters of faith are not now in question: but your infamous practices against the brethren sufficiently prove the inconsistency of your doctrines with Christian truth. A Christian is no striker, reviles not, does not fight; for it becomes not a servant of the Lord to fight. But your deeds cry out against you by those who have been sent into exile, who have been exposed to the wild beasts, and who have been delivered up to the flames. Those things which our own eyes have beheld, are far more convincing than what we receive from the report of another.” Moses having expressed himself in this manner, was taken by his friends to the mountains, that he might receive ordination from those bishops who lived in exile there. His consecration terminated the Saracen war: and so scrupulously did Mavia observe the peace thus entered into with the Romans, that she save her daughter in marriage to Victor the commander-in-chief of the Roman army. Such were the transactions in relation to the Saracens.








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