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A History Of The Church In Nine Books by Sozomen

“Constantius Augustus the Conqueror, to the holy Church in Antioch.

“EUDOXIUS went to you without our permission, and we by no means regard such persons with favour. If they have recourse to deceit in transactions like this, they give evidence that they mock at God. What can be expected of people who, actuated by insatiable cupidity, go boldly from city to city, hither and thither, with the view of enriching themselves? It is reported that there are among these people certain sophists and impostors, whose very names are scarcely to be tolerated, and whose deeds are evil and impious. You all know to what set of people I allude; for you are all acquainted with the doctrines of Aetius and the heresy which he originated. He and his followers have devoted themselves exclusively to the task of corrupting the people, and have had the audacity to publish that we approved of their ordination. Such is the report they circulate; but it is not true, and, indeed, far removed from the truth. Recall to your recollection the words of which we made use when we first made a declaration of our belief, for we confessed that our Saviour is the Son of God, and of like substance with the Father. But these people, who have the audacity to set forth whatever enters their imagination concerning the Godhead, are not far removed from atheism; and they strive moreover to propagate their opinions among others. I am convinced that their iniquitous proceedings will fall back upon their own heads. In the meantime, it is sufficient to eject them from communion and from the synod; for I will not now allude to the chastisements which must hereafter overtake them, unless they will desist from their audacious and furious deeds. How great is the evil they perpetrate, when they collect together the leaders of heresies and the most wicked persons and invest them with sacred orders, thereby debasing the priesthood, as if they were empowered to lead and direct the whole church! Who can bear with people who fill the cities with impiety, who sow corruption in the most distant regions, and who delight in nothing but in injuring the righteous? Now is the time for those who have imbibed the truth to come forward, for the artifices of these evil men have been so accurately detected, that it is impossible for them to remain concealed. It is the duty of good men to retain the faith of the Fathers, and, so to speak, to augment it, without busying themselves with other matters. I earnestly exhort those who have escaped though but recently from the precipice of this heresy, to assent to the decrees of the other bishops.”

Thus we see that the heresy usually denominated Anomian, was very likely to have become predominant at this period.








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