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sunt, quæ boni numularii non gospels, which the catholic church probaverunt-Fertur evange- has not approved—There is lium, quod scribitur secundum one spread abroad, which is enThomam, &c.
titled, The Gospel according to
6. By Athanasius? Tα της νέας διαθήκης αντιλεγό- The apocryphal books of the New μενα ταύτα--Ευαγγέλιον κατά Testament are these--The GosΘωμά, &c.
pel of Thomas, &c.
7. By Jeromem. Plures fuisse qui evangelia scrip- Luke the evangelist assures us, serunt, Lucas evangelista testa- there were many who wrote gostur, dicens, Quoniam quidem pels, (ch. i. 1.) which being pubmulti, &c. quæ a diversis aucto- lished by various authors, gave ribus edita diversarum hæreseon birth to various heresies ; such is fuere principia, ut est illud juxta that according to the Egyptians Ægyptios et Thomam, &c. and Thomas, &c.
8. By Gelasius in his Decree. Evangelium nomine Thomæ apo- The Gospel under the name of stoli, quo utuntur Manichæi, apo- Thomas the Apostle, which the cryphum.
Manichees use, is apocryphal. I need say no more of this book, than that it appears plainly to have been a spurious piece, composed by the heretics, and apocryphal by Prop. IV. V. VI. ; only I must observe, that the Gospel of Thomas, of which Cyril speaks, composed by Thomas, one of the followers of Manes, the head of the Manichees, could not possibly be the same with that mentioned by Origen, and perhaps most of the other writers, except Gelasius; because Origen lived a considerable time before the Manichean heresy, or even Manes himself was known in the world: this being not till the latter end of the third century, viz. till the time of Aurelius Probus, or Dioclesian, (as I have above observed, Chap. XXI.) whereas Origen lived in the beginning of it.
I In Synops. See the passage at See the place at large above, Ch. VII. large above, Chap. XXI.
No. IV. m Præfat. in Comment. in Matth.
No. LXVI. The Revelation of Thomas. IT is only mentioned by Gelasius in his Decree. Revelatio, quæ appellatur Tho- The Revelation, which is ascribed mæ apostoli, apocrypha.
to Thomas the apostle, is apocry
phal. To be rejected by Prop. IV. V. and VI. No. LXVII. Books under the name of Thomas.
By Innocent I.n Cætera, quæ sub nomine Mat- The other books under the name thæiet sub nomine Thomæ of Matthew or the name of
-non solum repudianda, ve- Thomas,- know, that they are rum etiam noveris esse damnanda. not only to be rejected, but con
demned. It is not very certain what books under this apostle's name this pope here designed to condemn; it is probable they were not the Acts, because he would have attributed them to Leucius, whom he just before refers to, as the author of spurious Acts under the names of Peter and John, and others, as has been proved, Chap. XXI. I suppose therefore he rather intended the Gospel of Thomas.
CHAP. XLI. The Gospel of Truth, a forgery of the Valentinians. Some account of Valentinus. A Gospel under his name.
No. LXVIII. The Gospel of Truth. This book was undoubtedly a composure of the second century, and very early therein it is mentioned by Irenæus thus: His igitur sic se habentibus, vani Seeing these things are so, (viz. Hi vero qui sunt a Valentino, make the authors of the Gospels iterum existentes extra omnem to be either more or fewer [than timorem, suas conscriptiones pro- four].
et indocti, et insuper that there are but four gospels,) audaces, qui frustrantur speciem it follows, that they are all silly evangelii P, et vel plures quam and ignorant, as well as impudictæ sunt, vel rursus pauciores dent, who attempt to make any inferunt personas evangelii — alteration in the Gospels, and
In Decret. sive Epist. 3. ad Exuper. Episcop. Tolos. c. 7. • Advers. Hæres. 1. 3. c. 11. ad fin. p This passage is not intelligible,
without considering his preceding allegory of the four Gospels and four animals,
But the Valentinians, ferentes, plura habere gloriantur, without any modesty, producing quam sint ipsa evangelia ; siqui- some writings of their own, boast
, dem in tantum processerunt au- that they have more than the daciæ, uti quod ab his non olim [four] Gospels; for they have conscriptum est, Veritatis Evan- been so very impudent, that they gelium titulent, in nihilo conve- have entitled one, The Gospel of niens apostolorum evangeliis, ut Truth, which was not long since nec Evangelium quidem sit apud written by them, nor does in any eos sine blasphemia. Şi enim, thing agree with the Gospels of quod ab iis profertur, Veritatis the apostles ; so that they have est Evangelium, dissimile est au- really no gospel but a mere fortem hoc illis, quæ ab apostolis gery?; for if that gospel which nobis tradita sunt; qui volunt they produce, entitled, The Gospossunt discere, quemadmodum pel of Truth, be disagreeable to ex ipsis scripturis ostenditur, jam those which have been delivered non esse id quod ab apostolis to us by the apostles ; every one traditum est Veritatis Evange- may perceive (as has been proved lium. Quoniam autem sola illa above from the scriptures) that vera et firma, et non capit neque the Gospel of Truth is not one plura præterquam prædicta sunt, of those delivered by the apostles. neque pauciora esse evangelia, Besides that I have above by per tot et tanta ostendimus. several good arguments evinced,
that only the [four] above mentioned Gospels are true and just,
and to be received. This passage leaves us no room to doubt concerning the design and scope of this Gospel, being calculated to serve the purposes of the Valentinian scheme. The author of the sect, Valentinus, was at Rome under Hyginus, about the year of Christ 142, (according to the Chronicon of Eusebius,) but according to the opinion of some modern critics, near twenty years sooner; which indeed seems to me undeniably demonstrated by several good arguments by our learned bishop Pearson". He was one of the principal authors of the Gnostics; and of his sentiments we have a very particular account given us by Irenæuss, Clemens Alexandrinus', Tertulliano, Origen", Epiphaniusy, and several others, which I shall not here largely enumerate, but only give the reader the following specimen. Having been educated in the Platonic philosophy at Alexandria, he formed his notions of Christianity agreeable thereto. He imagined certain gods, which he called Æones, to the number of thirty, whose names and pedigree (conformable to the fabulous genealogies of Hesiod) he pretended to assign. Fifteen of them he would have to be male, and fifteen female. Epiphanius has preserved their names: they are such as these; Ampsiu, Auraan, Bucua, Thartua, Ubucua, Thardeadie, &c. That Christ brought a body with him from heaven, and passed through the Virgin as water through a pipe. He asserted the lawfulness of all sorts of lusts to his disciples, allowing them to force other men's wives, &c. denied the resurrection, contended for the transmigration of souls, &c. Such were very probably the contents of this Gospel, so pompously entitled, The Gospel of Truth. To be rejected therefore by Prop. IV. V. VI. VIII. and IX.
9 So I translate the word blasphemia, because it at least implies some injus
tice done to the apostles.
r Vindic. Epist. Ignat. par. 2. C. 7.
No. LXIX. The Gospel of Valentinus. IT is only mentioned by Tertullian thus2: Evangelium habet etiam suum Valentinus also has a Gospel of præter hæc nostra.
his own, besides these of ours. This book, entitled The Gospel of Valentinus, has been supposed by some learned men to have been no other than the Gospel of Truth, made use of and forged by the Valentinians, of which I treated in the last section. This is supposed by Dr. Grabea, and after him by Mr. Fabritiusb, because, as they imagine, Valentinus himself did not write any Gospel. This they gather from a passage of Tertullianc, which to me seems to imply no such thing. His words are: Alius manu scripturas, alius sensu expositiones intervertit. Neque enim si Valentinus integro'instrumento uti videtur, non callidiore
s Lib. 1. et 2. adv. Hæres. + Strom. lib. 3.
u De Præscript. adv. Hæretic. C. 49. et lib. adv. Valentin.
y Hæres. 31.
Spicileg. Patr. t. 2. p. 48, 49.
* Contra Cels. lib. 2. p. 77. lib. 5. p.271. especially 1. 6. p. 298. et Expos. in Rom. 1.8, c. 11.
· Lib. jam cit. c. 38.
ingenio quam Marcion manus intulit veritati. Marcion enim exerte et palam machæra non stylo usus est; quoniam ad materiam suam cædem scripturarum confecit.' Valentinus autem pepercit ; quoniam non ad materiam scripturas, sed ad scripturas materiam excogitavit. i. e. “ Some heretics corrupt “ the scripture with their hands, (viz. by adding and taking “out;) others do it by perverse interpretations. For though “ Valentinus seems to make use of all the scriptures, he no “ less artfully than Marcion made his attacks upon the truth. “ For Marcion corrupted not only small portions of scripture, “ but made almost a total destruction, designing thereby to “ make the scriptures accommodate to his principles : but Va“ lentinus spared them, because his design was not to accom“modate the scriptures to his principles, but his principles to “ the scriptures.” In this passage it is plain that Tertullian says no more, than that Valentinus did not corrupt the sacred volume as Marcion did, by taking out those things which were disagreeable to his opinions; he says not (as these learned men imagine) that Valentinus made no new Gospel ; nor is the supposition of his having made one in the least inconsistent with the design of this passage; which shews the weakness of Dr. Grabe's argument, that the latter part of this book under the name of Tertullian is not his, because the author says, Valentinus had a Gospel, and so contradicts this former part of it, where he says he had not one; Tertullian saying no such thing. But if there really were any contradiction in these two places of Tertullian, I should rather think the mistake was in the former, where he says, Valentinus did not corrupt the scriptures, than in the latter, where he says, Valentinus had a Gospel of his own; because I observe, that both Irenæusd and Origene lay the former crime, viz. of corrupting the scriptures, to the charge of that heretic, though the latter, much more plainly than the former; for when Celsus objects that some Christians had changed the first scriptures three or four times, or more, &c. Origen answers, that this was not done by any persons except the disciples of Marcion, and Valentinus, and Lucianus. I conclude therefore, that Valentinus had a Gospel of his own, and that this was different from that called The Gosd Adv. Häres. l. 1. C. 1.
e Contr. Cels. I. 2. p. 77.