Historia Ecclesiastica


Eusebius, Historia Ecclesiastica, Lake, Loeb, 1926

XXXIII. Beryllus, who, as we have mentioned a little above,1 was bishop of Bostra in Αrabia, perverting the Church’s standard, attempted to introduce things foreign to the faith, daring to say that our Saviour and Lord did not pre-exist in an individual existence of Ηis own before Ηis coming to reside among men, nor had Ηe a divinity of Ηis own, only the Father’s dwelling in Ηim. after a large number of bishops had held questionings and discussions with the man, Origen being invited along with others, entered in the first place into conversation with the man to discover what Were his opinions, and when he knew what it was that he asserted, he corrected what was unorthodox, and, persuading him by reasoning, established him in the truth as to the doctrine, and restored him to his former sound opinion. Αnd there are still extant to this very day records in writing both of Beryllus and of the synod that was held on his account, which contain at once the questions Οrigen put put him and the discussions that took place in his own community, and all that was done on that occasion. And a great many other things about Origen have been handed down to memory by the older men of our day, which [*](1 20. 2)

I think it well to pass over, as they do not concern the Ρresent work. But all that it was necessary to know of his affairs, these also one may gather from the Apology that was written on his behalf by us and Ρamphilus, that holy martyr Of our day, a work that we were at pains to compose conjointly because of the fault-finders.

XXXXIV. When after six whole years Gordian broadught his government of the Romans to an end, Ρhilip along with his sOn Ρhilip suceeeded to the principate.1 It is recorded that he, being a Christian, wished on the day of the last paschal vigil to share along with the multitude the Ρrayers at the church, but was not permitted to enter by him who was then preriding until he eonfessed and numbered himself among those who were reckoned to be in sins and were occupying the place of penitence; for that otherwise, had he not done so, he would never have been received by [the president] on account of the many charges made concerning him. Αnd it is said that he obeyed readily, displaying by his actions how genuine and pious was his disposition towards the fear of God.

XXXV. It was the third year of his regin 2 when Ηeraclas departed this life, after Ρresiding for sixteen years over the churches at Αlexandria; Dionysius took up the episcopal office.

XXXVI. Then indeed, as was fitting, When the faith was inereasing and our doctrine was boldly proclaimed in the ears of all, it is said that Οrigen, who was over sixty years Οf age, inasmuch as he had now acquired immeense facility from long preparation,3 Ρermitted shorthand-writers to take down the dis- [*](3 Gregory, Pan. ii. 10.)

delivered by him in public, a thing that he had never before allowed.

Αt that time also he composed the treatises, eight in number, in answer to the work against us, entitled True Discourse of Celsus the Epicurean. and twenty-five tomes on the Gospel according to Μatthew, and those on the twelve prophets, of which we found only five and twenty. Αnd there is extant alSo a letter of his to the Emperor Philip himself, and another to his wife Severa, and narious other letters to various persons. Αs many of these as we have been able to bring together, preserved as they were here and there by various persons, we arranged in separate roll-eases, so that they might no longer be dispersed. These letters number more than a hundred. Αnd he wrote also to Fabian the bishop of Rome, and to very many other rulers of churches, with reference to his orthodoxy. You will find these facts also established in the sixth book of the Apology We wrote on the ’s hehalf.

XXXVII. Οnce more in Αrabia at the above-men- tioned time other persons sprang up, introducing a doctrine foreign to the truth, and saying that the human soul dies for a while in this present time, along with our bodies, at their death, and with them turns to corruption; but that hereafter, at the time of the resurrection, it will come to life again along with them. Moreover, when a synod of no small dimensions was then assembled together, Origen was again invited, and there opened a discussion in public on the subject in question, with sueh power that he changed the opinions of those who had formerly been deluded.

XXXVIII. Αt that time also another perverse

opinion had its beginning, the heresy known as that οf the Helkesaites, whic no sooner began than it was quenched. Origen mentions it in a public address οn the eighty-second Psalm, some such words as these: “There has come just now a certain man who prides himself on being able to champion a godless and very impious οpinion, of the Helkesaites, as it is ealled, which has lately come into opposition with the churches. I shall lay before you the mischievous teachings ofthat opinion, that you may not be carried away by it. It rejects some things from every scripture; agam; it has made use texts from every part ofthe old Testament and the Gospels; rejects the Αpostle entirely. Αnd it says that to deny is a matter of of indifference, and that the ffisereet man will on occasions of necessity deny with his mouth, but not in his heart. Αnd they produee a certain book οf which they say that it has fallen from heaven, and that he who has heard it and beldieves will reeeive forgiveness οf his sins — a forgiveness other than that which Christ Jesus has bestowed.”

XXXIX. But to resume. When Philip had reigned for seven years he was succeeded by Decius. 1 Ηe, on account of his enmity towards Philip, raised a persecution against the churches, in which Fabian was pertected by martyrdom at Rome, and was sueceeded in the episeopate by Cornelius.

In Palestine, Αlexander, the bishop of the church of Jerusalem, appeared οnce more for Chrisrt’s sake caesarea before the governor’s courts, and for second time distinguished himself by the confession he made; he underwent the trial of imprisonment, crowned with the venerable hoary loeks of ripe old age. Αnd when after the splenffid and manifest

testimony that he gave in the governor’s courts asleep in prison, Mazabanes was proclaimed as is successor in the episeopate at Jerusalem.

Αnd when at Αntioch Babvlas, in like manner to lexander, after confession departed this life in rison, Fabius was made president of the church ere.

Now the nature and extent of that which happened to Origen at the time of the persecution, and what was the end thereof; how the evil demon marshalled ll his forces in rivalry agrialnst the man, how he led them with every derivlce and power, and singled him ut, above all others upon whom he made war at that ime, for special attack; the nature and extent of which he endured for the word of Christ, chains d tortures, punishments infficted on his body, unishments as he lay in iron and in the recesses of is dungion; and how, when for many days his feet ere stretched four spaces in that instrument of rture, the stoeks, he bore with a stout heart threats f fire and everything else that was inflicted by his nemies; and the kind of issue he had thereof, the udge eagerly striving with all his might on no account put him to death; and what sort of sayings he eft behind him after this, sayings full ofhelp for those ho needed uplifting —[of all these matters] the man’s umerous letters contain both a true and aecurate count.