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A History Of The Church In Nine Books by Sozomen

A.D. 328.—NOT long after the Council of Nice, Arius was recalled from exile; but the prohibition to enter Alexandria was unrevoked. It shall be related in the proper place, how he strove to obtain permission to return to Egypt. Not long after, Eusebius, bishop of Nicomedia, and Theognis, bishop of Nicæa, regained possession of their bishoprics, after expelling Amphion and Chrestes, who had been ordained in their stead. They owed their restoration to a document which they had presented to the bishops, containing a retractation of their sentiments, and couched in the following terms:—“Although we have been condemned without a trial by your piety, we deemed it right to remain silent concerning the judgment passed against us. But as it would be absurd to remain longer silent, when silence is regarded as a proof of the truth of calumny, we now declare to you that we hold the same faith that you do; that, after a diligent examination of the word ‘con-substantial,’ we are wholly intent upon preserving peace; and that we are seduced by no heresy. Having proposed for the safety of the Church such suggestions as occurred to us, and having certified what we deemed requisite, we signed the confession of faith. We did not certainly sign the anathemas, but this was not because we impugned the confession of faith, but because we did not believe the accused to be what he was represented to us, the letters we had received from him, and the discourses he had delivered in our presence, compelling us to entertain a contrary opinion of him. So far from opposing any of the decrees enacted in your holy synod, we assent to all of them, and, by this document, attest our assent thereto: and this is not because we are wearied of exile, but because we wish to avert all suspicion of heresy. If you will condescend to admit us into your presence, you will find us in all points of the same sentiments as yourselves, and willing to defer to your decisions. The accused having justified himself, and having been recalled from exile, it would be absurd were we by our silence to confirm the reports that calumny had spread against us. We beseech you then, by the love that you bear to Christ, that you make our supplications known to our most godly emperor, and that you immediately direct us to act according to your will.” It was by these means that Eusebius and Theognis, after their change of sentiment, were reinstated in their churches.








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