Justin Martyr to Trypo
Part-3 Chapters 51-75
CHAP. LI.--IT IS PROVED THAT THIS PROPHECY HAS BEEN FULFILLED.
And when I ceased, Trypho said, "All the words of the prophecy you repeat, sir, are ambiguous, and have no force in proving what you wish to prove." Then I answered, "If the prophets had not ceased, so that there were no more in your nation, Trypho, after this John, it is evident that what I say in reference to Jesus Christ might be regarded perhaps as ambiguous. But if John came first calling on men to repent, and Christ, while[John] still sat by the river Jordan, having come, put an end to his prophesying and baptizing, and preached also Himself, saying that the kingdom of heaven is at hand, and that He must suffer many things from the Scribes and Pharisees, and be crucified, and on the third day rise again, and would appear again in Jerusalem, and would again eat and drink with His disciples; and foretold that in the interval between His[first and second] advent, as I previously said,(1) priests and false prophets would arise in His name, which things do actually appear; then how can they be ambiguous, when you may be persuaded by the facts? Moreover, He referred to the fact that there would be no longer in your nation any prophet, and to the fact that men recognised how that the New Testament, which God formerly announced[His intention of] promulgating, was then present, i.e., Christ Himself; and in the following terms: 'The law and the prophets were until John the Baptist; from that time the kingdom of heaven suffereth violence, and the violent take it by force. And if you can(2) receive it, he is Elijah, who was to come. He that hath ears to hear, let him hear.'(3)
CHAP. LII.--JACOB PREDICTED TWO ADVENTS OF CHRIST.
"And it was prophesied by Jacob the patriarch(4) that there would be two advents of Christ, and that in the first He would suffer, and that after He came there would be neither prophet nor king in your nation(I proceeded), and that the nations who believed in the suffering Christ would look for His future appearance. And for this reason the Holy Spirit had uttered these truths in a parable, and obscurely: for," I added, "it is said, 'Judah, thy brethren have praised thee: thy hands[shall be] on the neck of thine enemies; the sons of thy father shall worship thee. Judah is a lion's whelp; from the germ, my son, thou art sprung up. Reclining, he lay down like a lion, and like[a lion's] whelp: who shall raise him up? A ruler shall not depart from Judah, or a leader from his thighs, until that which is laid up in store for him shah come; and he shall be the desire of nations, binding his foal to the vine, and the foal of his ass to the tendril of the vine. He shall wash his garments in wine, and his vesture in the blood of the grape. His eyes shall be bright with s wine, and his teeth white like milk.'(6) Moreover, that in your nation there† never failed† either prophet or ruler, from the time when they began until the time when this Jesus Christ appeared and suffered, you will not venture shamelessly to assert, nor can you prove it. For though you affirm that Herod, after(7) whose[reign] He suffered, was an Ashkelonite, nevertheless you admit that there was a high priest in your nation; so that you then had one who presented offerings according to the law of Moses, and observed the other legal ceremonies; also[you had] prophets in succession until John,(even then, too, when your nation was carried captive to Babylon, when your land was ravaged by war, and the sacred vessels carried off); there never failed to be a prophet among you, who was lord, and leader, and ruler of your nation. For the Spirit which was in the prophets anointed your kings, and established them. But after the manifestation and death of our Jesus Christ in your nation, there was and is nowhere any prophet: nay, further, you ceased to exist under your own king, your land was laid waste, and forsaken like a lodge m a vineyard; and the statement of Scripture, in the mouth of Jacob, 'And He shall be the desire of nations,' meant symbolically His two advents, and that the nations would believe in Him; which facts you may now at length discern. For those out of all the nations who are pious and righteous through the faith of Christ, look for His future appearance.
CHAP. LIII.--JACOB PREDICTED THAT CHRIST WOULD RIDE ON AN ASS, AND ZECHARIAH CONFIRMS IT.
"And that expression, 'binding his foal to the vine, and the ass's foal to the vine tendril,' was a declaring beforehand both of the works wrought by Him at His first advent, and also of that belief in Him which the nations would repose. For they were like an unharnessed foal, which was not bearing a yoke on its neck, until this Christ came, and sent His disciples to instruct them; and they bore the yoke of His word, and yielded the neck to endure all[hardships], for the sake of the good things promised by Himself, and expected by them. And truly† our Lord Jesus Christ, when He intended to go
into Jerusalem, requested His disciples to bring Him a certain ass, along with its foal, which was bound in an entrance of a village called Bethphage; and having seated Himself on it, He entered into Jerusalem. And as this was done by Him in the manner in which it was prophesied in precise terms that it would be done by the Christ, and as the fulfilment was recognised, it became a clear proof that He was the Christ. And though all this happened and is proved from Scripture, you are still hard-hearted. Nay, it was prophesied by Zechariah, one of the twelve[prophets], that such would take place, in the following words: 'Rejoice greatly, daughter of Zion; shout, and declare, daughter of Jerusalem; behold, thy King shall come to thee, righteous, bringing salvation, meek, and lowly, riding on an ass, and the foal of an ass.'(1) Now, that the Spirit of prophecy, as well as the patriarch Jacob, mentioned both an ass and its foal, which would be used by Him; and, further, that He, as I previously said, requested His disciples to bring both beasts;[this fact] was a prediction that you of the synagogue, along with the Gentiles, would believe in Him. For as the unharnessed colt was a symbol of the Gentiles even so the harnessed ass was a symbol of your nation. For you possess the law which was imposed[upon you] by the prophets. Moreover, the prophet Zechariah foretold that this same Christ would be smitten, and His disciples scattered: which also took place. For after His crucifixion, the disciples that accompanied Him were dispersed, until He rose from the dead, and persuaded them that so it had been prophesied concerning Him, that He would suffer; and being thus persuaded, they went into all the world, and taught these truths. Hence also we are strong in His faith and doctrine, since we have[this our] persuasion both from the prophets, and from those who throughout the world are seen to be worshippers of God in the name of that crucified One. The following is said, too, by Zechariah: 'O sword, rise up against My Shepherd, and against the man of My people, saith the Lord of hosts. Smite the Shepherd, and His flock shall be scattered.'(2)
CHAP, LIV.--WHAT THE BLOOD OF THE GRAPE SIGNIFIES.
"And that expression which was committed to writing(3) by Moses, and prophesied by the patriarch Jacob, namely, 'He shall wash His garments with wine, and His vesture with the blood of the grape,' signified that He would wash those that believe in Him with His own blood. For the Holy Spirit called those who receive remission of sins through Him, His garments; amongst whom He is always present in power, but will be manifestly present at His second coming. That the Scripture mentions the blood of the grape has been evidently designed, because Christ derives blood not from the seed of man, but from the power of God. For as God, and not man, has produced the blood of the vine, so also[the Scripture] has predicted that the blood of Christ would be not of the seed of man, but of the power of God. But this prophecy, sirs, which I repeated, proves that Christ is not man of men, begotten in the ordinary course of humanity."
CHAP. LV.--TRYPHO ASKS THAT CHRIST BE PROVED GOD, BUT WITHOUT METAPHOR. JUSTIN PROMISES TO DO SO.
And Trypho answered, "We shall remember this your exposition, if you strengthen[your solution of] this difficulty by other arguments: but now resume the discourse, and show us that† the Spirit of prophecy admits another God sides the Maker of all things, taking care not to speak of the sun and moon, which, it is written,(4) God has given to the nations to worship as gods; and oftentimes the prophets, employing(5) this manner of speech, say that 'thy God is a God of gods, and a Lord of lords,' adding frequently, 'the great and strong and terrible[God].' For such expressions are used, not as if they really were gods, but because the Scripture is teaching us that the true God, who made all things, is Lord alone of those who are reputed gods and lords. And in order that the Holy Spirit may convince[us] of this, He said by the holy David, 'The gods of the nations, reputed gods, are idols of demons, and not gods;'(6) and He denounces a curse on those who worship them."
And I replied, "I would not bring forward these proofs, Trypho, by which I am aware those who worship these[idols] and such like are condemned, but such[proofs] as no one could find any objection to. They will appear strange to you, although you read them every day; so that even from this fact we(7) understand that, because of your wickedness, God has withheld from you the ability to discern the wisdom of His Scriptures; yet[there are] some exceptions, to whom, according to the grace of His long-suffering, as Isaiah said, He has left a seed of(8) salvation, lest your race be utterly destroyed, like Sodom and Gomorrah. Pay attention, therefore, to what I shall record out of the holy Scriptures, which(9) do not need to be expounded, but only listened to.
CHAP. LVI.--GOD WHO APPEARED TO MOSES IS DISTINGUISHED FROM GOD THE FATHER.††
"Moses, then, the blessed and faithful servant of God, declares that He who appeared to Abraham under the oak in Mamre is God, sent with the two angels in His company to judge Sodom by Another who remains ever in the supercelestial places, invisible to all men, holding personal intercourse with none, whom we believe to be Maker and Father of all things; for he speaks thus: 'God appeared to him under the oak in Mature, as he sat at his tent-door at noontide. And lifting up his eyes, he saw, and behold, three men stood before him; and when he saw them, he ran to meet them from the door of his tent;† and he bowed himself toward the ground, and said;' "(1)(and so on;)(2) " 'Abraham gat up early in the morning to the place where he stood before the Lord: and he looked toward Sodom and Gomorrah, and toward the adjacent† country, and beheld, and, lo, a flame went up from the earth, like the smoke of a furnace.'" And when I had made an end of quoting these words, I asked them if they had understood them.† And they said they had understood them, but that the passages adduced brought forward no proof that there is any other God or Lord, or† that the Holy Spirit says so, besides the Maker of all things.
Then I replied, "I shall attempt to persuade you, since you have understood the Scriptures,[of the truth] of what I say, that there is, and that there is said to be, another God and Lord subject to(3) the Maker of all things; who is also called an Angel (Messenger), because He announces to men whatsoever the Maker of all things--above whom there is no other God--wishes to announce to them." And quoting once more the previous passage, I asked Trypho, "Do you think that God appeared to Abraham under the oak in Mature, as the Scripture asserts?"
He said, "Assuredly."
"Was He one of those three," I said, "whom Abraham saw, and whom the Holy Spirit of prophecy describes as men?"
He said, "No; but God appeared to him, before the vision of the three. Then those three† whom the Scripture calls men, were angels; two of them sent to destroy Sodom, and one to announce the joyful tidings to Sarah, that she would bear a son; for which cause he was sent, and having accomplished his errand, went away."(4)
"How then," said I, "does the one of the three, who was in the tent, and who said, 'I shall return to thee hereafter, and Sarah shall have a son,'(5) appear to have returned when Sarah had begotten a son, and to be there declared, by the prophetic word, God? But that you may clearly discern what I say, listen to the words expressly employed by Moses; they are these: 'And Sarah saw the son of Hagar the Egyptian bond-woman, whom she bore to Abraham, sporting with Isaac her son, and said to Abraham, Cast out this bond-woman and her son; for the son of this bond-woman shall not share the inheritance of my son Isaac. And the matter seemed very grievous in Abraham's sight, because of his son. But God said to Abraham, Let it not be grievous in thy sight because of the son, and because of the bond-woman. In all that Sarah hath said unto thee, hearken to her voice; for in Isaac shall thy seed be called.'(6) Have you perceived, then, that He who said under the oak that He would return, since He knew it would be necessary to advise Abraham to do what Sarah wished him, came back as it is written; and is God, as the words declare, when they so speak: 'God said to Abraham, Let it not be grievous in thy sight because of the son, and because of the bond-woman?' " I inquired. And Trypho said, "Certainly; but you have not proved from this that there is another God besides Him who appeared to Abraham, and who also appeared to the other patriarchs and prophets. You have proved, however, that we were wrong in believing that the three who were in the tent with Abraham were all angels."
I replied again, "If I could not have proved to you from the Scriptures that one of those three is God, and is called Angel,(7) because, as I already said, He brings messages to those to whom God the Maker of all things wishes[messages to be brought], then in regard to Him who appeared to Abraham on earth in human form in like manner as the two angels who came with Him, and who was God even before the creation of the world, it were reasonable for you to entertain the same belief as is entertained by the whole of your nation."
"Assuredly," he said, "for up to this moment this has been our belief."
Then I replied, "Reverting to the Scriptures, I shall endeavour to persuade you, that He who is said to have appeared to Abraham, and to Jacob, and to Moses, and who is called God, is distinct from Him who made all things,--numerically, I mean, not[distinct] in will. For I affirm that He has never at any time done(8) anything which He who made the world--above whom there is no other God--has not wished Him both to do and to engage Himself with."
And Trypho said, "Prove now that this is the case, that we also may agree with you. For we do not understand you to affirm that He has done or said anything contrary to the will of the† Maker of all things."
Then I said, "The Scripture just quoted by me will make this plain to you. It is thus: 'The sun was risen on the earth, and Lot entered into Segor(Zoar); and the Lord rained on Sodom sulphur and fire from the Lord out of heaven, and overthrew these cities and all the neighbourhood.' "(1)
Then the fourth of those who had remained with Trypho said, "It(2) must therefore necessarily be said that one of the two angels who went to Sodom, and is named by Moses in the Scripture Lord, is different from Him who also is God and appeared to Abraham."(3)
"It is not on this ground solely," I said, "that it must be admitted absolutely that some other one is called Lord by the Holy Spirit besides Him who is considered Maker of all things; not solely[for what is said] by Moses, but also[for what is said] by David. For there is written by him: 'The Lord says to my Lord, Sit on My right hand, until I make Thine enemies Thy footstool,'(4) as I have already quoted. And again, in other words: 'Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever. A sceptre of equity is the sceptre of Thy kingdom: Thou hast loved righteousness and hated iniquity: therefore God, even Thy God, hath anointed Thee with the oil of gladness above Thy fellows.'(5) If, therefore, you assert that the Holy Spirit calls some other one God and Lord, besides the Father of all things and His Christ, answer me; for I undertake to prove to you from Scriptures themselves, that He whom the Scripture calls Lord is not one of the two angels that went to Sodom, but He who was with them, and is called God, that appeared to Abraham."
And Trypho said, "Prove this; for, as you see, the day advances, and we are not prepared for such perilous replies; since never yet have we heard any man investigating, or searching into, or proving these matters; nor would we have tolerated your conversation, had you not referred everything to the Scriptures:(6) for you are very zealous in adducing proofs from them; and you are of opinion that there is no God above the Maker of all things."
Then I replied, "You are aware, then, that the Scripture says, 'And the Lord said to Abraham, Why did Sarah laugh, saying, Shall I truly conceive? for I am old. Is anything impossible with God? At the time appointed shall I return to thee according to the time of life, and Sarah shall have a son.'(7) And after a little interval: 'And the men rose up from thence, and looked towards Sodom and Gomorrah; and Abraham went with them, to bring them on the way. And the Lord said, I will not conceal from Abraham, my servant, what I do.'(8) And again, after a little, it thus says: 'The Lord said, The cry of Sodom and Gomorrah is great,(9) and their sins are very grievous. I will go down now, and see whether they have done altogether according to their cry which has come unto me; and if not, that I may know. And the men turned away thence, and went to Sodom. But Abraham was standing before the Lord; and Abraham drew near, and said, Wilt Thou destroy the righteous with the wicked?' "(10)(and so on,(11) for I do not think fit to write over again the same words, having written them all before, but shall of necessity give those by which I established the proof to Trypho and his companions. Then I proceeded to what follows, in which these words are recorded:) " 'And the Lord went His way as soon as He had left communing with Abraham; and[Abraham] went to his place. And there came two angels to Sodom at even. And Lot sat in the gate of Sodom;'(12) and what follows until, 'But the men put forth their hands, and pulled Lot into the house to them, and shut to the door of the house;'(13) and what follows till, 'And the angels laid hold on his hand, and on the hand of his wife, and on the hands of his daughters, the Lord being merciful to him. And it came to pass, when they had brought them forth abroad, that they said, Save, save thy life. Look not behind thee, nor stay in all the neighbourhood; escape to the mountain, lest thou be taken along with[them]. And Lot said to them, I beseech[Thee], O Lord, since Thy servant bath† found grace in Thy sight, and Thou hast magnified Thy righteousness, which Thou showest towards me in saving my life; but I cannot escape to the mountain, lest evil overtake me, and I die. Behold, this city is near to flee unto, and it is small: there I shall be safe, since it is small; and any soul shall live. And He said to him, Behold, I have accepted thee(14) also in this matter, so as not to destroy the city for which thou hast spoken. Make haste to save thyself there; for I shall not do anything till thou be come thither. Therefore he called the name of the city Segor(Zoar). The sun was risen upon the earth; and Lot entered into Segor(Zoar). And the Lord rained on Sodom and Gomorrah sulphur and fire from the Lord out of heaven; and He overthrew these cities, and all the neighbourhood.'"(1) And after another pause I added: "And now have you not perceived, my friends, that one of the three, who is both God and Lord, and ministers to Him who is in the heavens, is Lord of the two angels? For when[the angels] proceeded to Sodom, He remained behind, and communed with Abraham in the words recorded by Moses; and when He departed after the conversation, Abraham went back to his place. And when he came[to Sodom], the two angels no longer conversed with Lot, but Himself, as the Scripture makes evident; and He is the Lord who received commission from the Lord who[remains] in the heavens, i.e.,the Maker of all things, to inflict upon Sodom and Gomorrah the[judgments] which the Scripture describes in these terms:'The Lord rained down upon Sodom and Gomorrah sulphur and fire from the Lord out of heaven.' "
CHAP. LVII.--THE JEW OBJECTS, WHY IS HE SAID TO HAVE EATEN, IF HE BE GOD? ANSWER OF JUSTIN.
Then Trypho said when I was silent, "That Scripture compels us to admit this, is manifest; but there is a matter about which we are deservedly at a loss--namely, about what was said to the effect that[the Lord] ate what was prepared and placed before him by Abraham; and you would admit this."
I answered, "It is written that they ate; and if we believe(2) that it is said the three ate, and not the two alone--who were really angels, and are nourished in the heavens, as is evident to us, even though they are not nourished by food similar to that which mortals use--(for, concerning the sustenance of manna which supported your fathers in the desert, Scripture speaks thus, that they ate angels'food):[if we believe that three ate], then I would say that the Scripture which affirms they ate bears the same meaning as when we would say about fire that it has devoured all things; yet it is not certainly understood that they ate, masticating with teeth and jaws. So that not even here should we be at a loss about anything, if we are acquainted even slightly with figurative modes of expression, and able to rise above them."
And Trypho said, "It is possible that[the question] about the mode of eating may be thus explained:[the mode, that is to say,] in which it is written, they took and ate what had been prepared by Abraham: so that you may now proceed to explain to us how this God who appeared to Abraham, and is minister to God the Maker of all things, being born of the Virgin, became man, of like passions with all, as you said previously."
Then I replied, "Permit me first, Trypho, to collect some other proofs on this head, so that you, by the large number of them, may be persuaded of[the truth of] it, and thereafter I shall explain what you ask."
And he said, "Do as seems good to you; for I shall be thoroughly pleased."
CHAP. LVIII.--THE SAME IS PROVED FROM THE VISIONS WHICH APPEARED TO JACOB.
Then I continued, "I purpose to quote to you Scriptures, not that I am anxious to make merely an artful display of words; for I possess no such faculty, but God's grace alone has been granted to me to the understanding of His Scriptures, of which grace I exhort all to become partakers freely and bounteously, in order that they may not, through want of it,(3) incur condemnation in the judgment which God the Maker of all things shall hold through my Lord Jesus Christ."
And Trypho said, "What you do is worthy of the worship of God; but you appear to me to feign ignorance when you say that you do not possess a store of artful words."
I again replied, "Be it so, since you think so; yet I am persuaded that I speak the truth.(4) But give me your attention, that I may now rather adduce the remaining proofs." "Proceed," said he.
And I continued: "It is again written by Moses, my brethren, that He who is called God and appeared to the patriarchs is called both (messenger)Angel and Lord, in order that from this you may understand Him to be minister to the Father of all things, as you have already admitted, and may remain firm, persuaded by additional arguments. The word of God, therefore,[recorded] by Moses, when referring to Jacob the grandson of Abraham, speaks thus: 'And it came to pass, when the sheep conceived, that I saw them with my eyes in the dream: And, behold, the he-goats and the rams which leaped upon the sheep and she-goats were spotted with white, and speckled and sprinkled with a dun colour. And the Angel (messenger) of God said to me in the dream, Jacob, Jacob. And I said, What is it, Lord? And He said, Lift up thine eyes, and see that the he-goats and rams leaping on the sheep and she-goats are spotted with white, speckled, and sprinkled with a dun colour. For I have seen what Laban doeth unto thee. I am the God who appeared to thee in Bethel,(1) where thou anointest a pillar and vowedst a vow unto Me. Now therefore arise, and get thee out of this land, and depart to the land of thy birth, and I shall be with thee.(2) And again, in other words, speaking of the same Jacob, it thus says: 'And having risen up that night, he took the two wives, and the two women-servants, and his eleven children, and passed over the ford Jabbok; and he took them and went over the brook, and sent over all his belongings. But Jacob was left behind alone, and an (Messenger) Angel(3) wrestled with him until morning. And He saw that He is not prevailing against him, and He touched the broad part of his thigh; and the broad part of Jacob's thigh grew stiff while he wrestled with Him. And He said, Let Me go, for the day breaketh. But he said, I will not let Thee go, except Thou bless me. And He said to him, What is thy name? And he said, Jacob. And He said, Thy name shall be called no more Jacob, but Israel shall be thy name; for thou hast prevailed with God, and with men shalt be powerful. And Jacob asked Him, and said, Tell me Thy name. But he said, Why dost thou ask after My name? And He blessed him there. And Jacob called the name of that place Peniel,(4) for I saw God face to face, and my soul rejoiced.'(5) And again, in other terms, referring to the same Jacob, it says the following: 'And Jacob came to Luz, in the land of Canaan, which is Bethel, he and all the people that were with him. And there he built an altar, and called the name of that place Bethel; for there God appeared to him when he fled from the face of his brother Esau. And Deborah, Rebekah's nurse, died, and was buried beneath Bethel under an oak: and Jacob called the name of it The Oak of Sorrow. And God appeared again to Jacob in Luz, when he came out from Mesopotamia in Syria, and He blessed him. And God said to him, Thy name shall be no more called Jacob, but Israel shall he thy name.'(6) He is called God, and He is and shall be God." And when all had agreed on these grounds, I continued: "Moreover, I consider it necessary to repeat to you the words which narrate how He who is both (messenger) Angel and God and Lord, and who appeared as a man to Abraham, and who wrestled in human form with Jacob, was seen by him when he fled from his brother Esau. They are as follows: 'And Jacob went out from the well of the oath,(7) and went toward Charran.(8)
And he lighted on a spot, and slept there, for the sun was set; and he gathered of the stones of the place, and put them under his head. And he slept in that place; and he dreamed, and, behold, a ladder was set up on the earth, whose top reached to heaven; and the angels of God ascended and descended upon it. And the Lord stood above it, and He said, I am the Lord, the God of Abraham thy father, and of Isaac; be not afraid: the land whereon thou liest, to thee will I give it, and to thy seed; and thy seed shall be as the dust of the earth, and shall be extended to the west, and south, and north, and east: and in thee, and in thy seed, shall all families of the earth be blessed. And, behold, I am with thee, keeping thee in every way wherein thou goest, and will bring thee again into this land; for I will not leave thee, until I have done all that I have spoken to thee of. And Jacob awaked out of his sleep, and said, Surely the Lord is in this place, and I knew it not. And he was afraid, and said, How dreadful is this place! this is none other than the house of God, and this is the gate of heaven. And Jacob rose up in the morning, and took the stone which he had placed under his head, and he set it up for a pillar, and poured oil upon the top of it; and Jacob called the name of the place The House of God, and the name of the city formerly was Ulammaus.'"(10)
CHAP. LIX.--GOD DISTINCT FROM THE FATHER CONVERSED WITH MOSES.
When I had spoken these words, I continued: "Permit me, further, to show you from the book of Exodus how this same One, who is both Angel, and God, and Lord, and man, and who appeared in human form to Abraham and Isaac,(11) appeared in a flame of fire from the bush, and conversed with Moses." And after they said they would listen cheerfully, patiently, and eagerly, I went on: "These words are in the book which bears the title of Exodus: 'And after many days the king of Egypt died, and the children of Israel groaned by reason of the works;'(12) and so on until,'Go and gather the elders of Israel, and thou shalt say unto them, The Lord God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, hath appeared to me, saying, I am surely beholding you, and the things which have befallen you in Egypt.'"(13) In addition to these words, I went on: "Have you perceived, sirs, that this very God whom Moses speaks of as an Angel that talked to him in the flame of fire, declares to Moses that He is the God of Abraham, of Isaac, and of Jacob?"
CHAP. LX.--OPINIONS OF THE JEWS WITH REGARD TO HIM WHO APPEARED IN THE BUSH.
Then Trypho said, "We do not perceive this from the passage quoted by you, but[only this], that it was an angel who appeared in the flame of fire, but God who conversed with Moses; so that there were really two persons in company with each other, an angel and God, that appeared in that vision."
I again replied, "Even if this were so, my friends, that an angel and God were together in the vision seen by Moses, yet, as has already been proved to you by the passages previously quoted, it will not be the Creator of all things that is the God that said to Moses that He was the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, but it will be He who has been proved to you to have appeared to Abraham, ministering to the will of the Maker of all things, and likewise carrying into execution His counsel in the judgment of Sodom; so that, even though it be as you say, that there were two--an angel and God--he who has but the smallest intelligence will not venture to assert that the Maker and Father of all things, having left all supercelestial matters, was visible on a little portion of the earth."
And Trypho said, "Since it has been previously proved that He who is called God and Lord, and appeared to Abraham, received from the Lord, who is in the heavens, that which He inflicted on the land of Sodom, even although an angel had accompanied the God who appeared to Moses, we shall perceive that the God who communed with Moses from the bush was not the Maker of all things, but He who has been shown to have manifested Himself to Abraham and to Isaac and to Jacob; who also is called and is perceived to be the Angel of God the Maker of all things, because He publishes to men the commands of the Father and Maker of all things."
And I replied, "Now assuredly, Trypho, I shall show that, in the vision of Moses, this same One alone who is called an Angel, and who is God, appeared to and communed with Moses. For the Scripture says thus:'The Angel of the Lord appeared to him in a flame of fire from the bush; and he sees that the bush burns with fire, but the bush was not consumed. And Moses said, I will turn aside and see this great sight, for the bush is not burnt. And when the Lord saw that he is turning aside to behold, the Lord called to him out of the bush.'(1) In the same manner, therefore, in which the Scripture calls Him who appeared to Jacob in the dream an Angel, then[says] that the same Angel who appeared in the dream spoke to him,(2) saying,'I am the God that appeared to thee when thou didst flee from the face of Esau thy brother;'and[again] says that, in the judgment which befell Sodom in the days of Abraham, the Lord had inflicted the punishment(3) of the Lord who[dwells] in the heavens;--even so here, the Scripture, in announcing that the Angel of the Lord appeared to Moses, and in afterwards declaring him to be Lord and God, speaks of the same One, whom it declares by the many testimonies already quoted to be minister to God, who is above the world, above whom there is no other[God].
CHAP. LXI--WISDOM IS BEGOTTEN OF THE FATHER, AS FIRE FROM† FIRE.
give you another testimony, my friends," said I, "from the
Scriptures, that God begat before all creatures a Beginning,(4)[who
was] a certain rational power[proceeding] from Himself, who is called
by the Holy Spirit, now the Glory of the Lord, now the Son, again
Wisdom, again an Angel, then God, and then Lord and Logos; and on
another occasion He calls Himself Captain, when He appeared in human
form to Joshua the son of Nave(Nun). For He can be called by all those
names, since He ministers to the Father's will, and since He was begotten
of the Father by an act of will;(5) just as we see(6) happening among
ourselves: for when we give out some word, we beget the word; yet
not by abscission, so as to lessen the word(7)[which remains] in us,
when we give it out: and just as we see also happening in the case
of a fire, which is not lessened when it has kindled[another], but
remains the same; and that which has been kindled by it likewise appears
to exist by itself, not diminishing that from which it was kindled.
The Word of Wisdom, who is Himself this God begotten of the Father
of all things, and Word, and Wisdom, and Power, and the Glory of the
Begetter, will bear evidence to me, when He speaks by Solomon the
following:'If I shall declare to you what happens daily, I shall call
to mind events from everlasting, and review them. The Lord made me
CHAP. LXII.--THE WORDS "LET US MAKE MAN" AGREE WITH THE TESTIMONY OF PROVERBS.
"And the same sentiment was expressed, my friends, by the word of God[written] by Moses, when it indicated to us, with regard to Him whom it has pointed out,(3) that God speaks in the creation of man with the very same design, in the following words:'Let Us make man after our image and likeness. And let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the heaven, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over all the creeping things that creep on the earth. And God created man: after the image of God did He create him; male and female created He them. And God blessed them, and said, Increase and multiply, and fill the earth, and have power over it.(4) And that you may not change the[force of the] words just quoted, and repeat what your teachers assert,--either that God said to Himself,'Let Us make,'just as we, when about to do something, oftentimes say to ourselves,'Let us make;'or that God spoke to the elements, to wit, the earth and other similar substances of which we believe man was formed,'Let Us make,'--I shall quote again the words narrated by Moses himself, from which we can indisputably learn that[God] conversed with some one who was numerically distinct from Himself, and also a rational Being. These are the words:'And God said, Behold, Adam has become as one of us, to know good and evil.'(5) In saying, therefore,'as one of us,'[Moses] has declared that[there is a certain] number of persons associated with one another, and that they are at least two. For I would not say that the dogma of that heresy(6) which is said to be among you(7) is true, or that the teachers of it can prove that[God] spoke to angels, or that the human frame was the workmanship of angels. But this Offspring, which was truly brought forth from the Father, was with the Father before all the creatures, and the Father communed with Him; even as the Scripture by Solomon has made clear, that He whom Solomon calls Wisdom, was begotten as a Beginning before all His creatures and as Offspring by God, who has also declared this same thing in the revelation made by Joshua the son of Nave(Nun). Listen, therefore, to the following from the book of Joshua, that what I say may become manifest to you; it is this: 'And it came to pass, when Joshua was near Jericho, he lifted up his eyes, and sees a man standing over against him. And Joshua approached to Him, and said, Art thou for us, or for our adversaries? And He said to him, I am Captain of the Lord's host: now have I come. And Joshua fell on his face on the ground, and said to Him, Lord, what commandest Thou Thy servant? And the Lord's Captain says to Joshua, Loose the shoes off thy feet; for the place whereon thou standest is holy ground. And Jericho was shut up and fortified, and no one went out of it. And the Lord said to Joshua, Behold, I give into thine hand Jericho, and its king,[and] its mighty men.'"(8)
CHAP. LXIII.--IT IS PROVED THAT THIS GOD WAS INCARNATE.
And Trypho said, "This point has been proved to me forcibly, and by many arguments, my friend. It remains, then, to prove that He submitted to become man by the Virgin, according to the will of His Father; and to be crucified, and to die. Prove also clearly, that after this He rose again and ascended to heaven."
I answered, "This, too, has been already demonstrated by me in the previously quoted words of the prophecies, my friends; which, by recalling and expounding for your sakes, I shall endeavor to lead you to agree with me also about this matter. The passage, then, which Isaiah records,'Who shall declare His generation? for His life is taken away from the earth,(1)--does it not appear to you to refer to One who, not having descent from men, was said to be delivered over to death by God for the transgressions of the people?--of whose blood, Moses(as I mentioned before), when speaking in parable, said, that He would wash His garments in the blood of the grape; since His blood did not spring from the seed of man, but from the will of God. And then, what is said by David,'In the splendours of Thy holiness have I begotten Thee from the womb, before the morning star.(2) The Lord hath sworn, and will not repent, Thou art a priest for ever, after the order of Melchizedek,'(3)--does this not declare to you(4) that[He was] from of old,(5) and that the God and Father of all things intended Him to be begotten by a human womb? And speaking in other words, which also have been already quoted,[he says]:'Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever: a sceptre of rectitude is the sceptre of Thy kingdom. Thou hast loved righteousness, and hast hated iniquity: therefore God, even thy God, hath anointed Thee with the oil of gladness above Thy fellows.[He hath anointed Thee] with myrrh, and oil, and cassia from Thy garments, from the ivory palaces, whereby they made Thee glad. Kings' daughters are in Thy honour. The queen stood at Thy right hand, clad in garments embroidered with gold.(6) Hearken, O daughter, and behold, and incline thine ear, and forget thy people and the house of thy father; and the King shall desire thy beauty: because he is thy Lord, and thou shalt worship Him.'(7) Therefore these words testify explicitly that He is witnessed to by Him who established these things,(8) as deserving to be worshipped, as God and as Christ. Moreover, that the word of God speaks to those who believe in Him as being one soul, and one synagogue, and one church, as to a daughter; that it thus addresses the church which has sprung from His name and partakes of His name(for we are all called Christians), is distinctly proclaimed in like manner in the following words, which teach us also to forget[our] old ancestral customs, when they speak thus:(9)'Hearken, O daughter, and behold, and incline thine ear; forget thy people and the house of thy father, and the King shall desire thy beauty: because He is thy Lord, and thou shalt worship Him.'"
CHAP. LXIV.--JUSTIN ADDUCES OTHER PROOFS TO THE JEW, WHO DENIES THAT HE NEEDS THIS CHRIST.
Here Trypho said, "Let Him be recognised as Lord and Christ and God, as the Scriptures declare, by you of the Gentiles, who have from His name been all called Christians; but we who are servants of God that made this same[Christ], do not require to confess or worship Him?"
To this I replied, "If I were to be quarrelsome and light-minded like you, Trypho, I would no longer continue to converse with you, since you are prepared not to understand what has been said, but only to return some captious answer;(10) but now, since I fear the judgment of God, I do not state an untimely opinion concerning any one of your nation, as to whether or not some of them may be saved by the grace of the Lord of Sabaoth. Therefore, although you act wrongfully, I shall continue to reply to any proposition you shall bring forward, and to any contradiction which you make; and, in fact, I do the very same to all men of every nation, who wish to examine along with me, or make inquiry at me, regarding this subject. Accordingly, if you had bestowed attention on the Scriptures previously quoted by me, you would already have understood, that those who are saved of your own nation are saved through this(11)[man], and partake of His lot; and you would not certainly have asked me about this matter. I shall again repeat the words of David previously quoted by me, and beg of you to comprehend them, and not to act wrongfully, and stir each other up to give merely some contradiction. The words which David speaks, then, are these:'The Lord has reigned; let the nations be angry:[it is] He who sits upon the cherubim; let the earth be shaken. The Lord is great in Zion; and He is high above all the nations. Let them confess Thy great name, for it is fearful and holy; and the honour of the king loves judgment. Thou hast prepared equity; judgment and righteousness hast Thou performed in Jacob. Exalt the Lord our God, and worship the footstool of His feet; for He is holy. Moses and Aaron among His priests, and Samuel among them that call upon His name; they called on the Lord, and He heard them. In the pillar of the cloud He spake to them; for they kept His testimonies and His commandments which He gave them.'(12)
And from the other words of David, also previously quoted, which you foolishly affirm refer to Solomon,[because] inscribed for Solomon, it can be proved that they do not refer to Solomon, and that this[Christ] existed before the sun, and that those of your nation who are saved shall be saved through Him.[The words] are these:'O God, give Thy judgment to the king, and Thy righteousness unto the king's son. He shall judge(1) Thy people with righteousness, and Thy poor with judgment. The mountains shall take up peace to the people, and the little hills righteousness. He shall judge the poor of the people, and shall save the children of the needy, and shall abase the slanderer: and He shall co-endure with the sun, and before the moon unto all generations;'and so on until, 'His name endureth before the sun, and all tribes of the earth shall be blessed in Him. All nations shall call Him blessed. Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel, who only doeth wondrous things: and blessed be His glorious name for ever and ever: and the whole earth shall be filled with His glory. Amen, Amen.'(2) And you remember from other words also spoken by David, and which I have mentioned before, how it is declared that He would come forth from the highest heavens, and again return to the same places, in order that you may recognise Him as God coming forth from above, and man living among men; and[how it is declared] that He will again appear, and they who pierced Him shall see Him, and shall bewail Him.[The words] are these: 'The heavens declare the glory of God, and the firmament showeth His handiwork. Day unto day uttereth speech, and night unto night showeth knowledge: They are not speeches or words whose voices are heard. Their sound has gone out through all the earth, and their words to the ends of the world. In the sun has he set his habitation; and he, like a bridegroom going forth from his chamber, will rejoice as a giant to run his race: from the highest heaven is his going forth, and he returns to the highest heaven, and there is not one who shall be hidden from his heat.' "(3)
CHAP. LXV.--THE JEW OBJECTS THAT GOD DOES NOT GIVE HIS GLORY TO ANOTHER. JUSTIN EXPLAINS THE PASSAGE.
And Trypho said, "Being shaken(4) by so many Scriptures, I know not what to say about the Scripture which Isaiah writes, in which God says that He gives not His glory to another, speaking thus 'I am the Lord God; this is my name; my glory will I not give to another, nor my virtues.'"(5)
And I answered, "If you spoke these words, Trypho, and then kept silence in simplicity and with no ill intent, neither repeating what goes before nor adding what comes after, you must be forgiven; but if[you have done so] because you imagined that you could throw doubt on the passage, in order that I might say the Scriptures contradicted each other, you have erred. But I shall not venture to suppose or to say such a thing; and if a Scripture which appears to be of such a kind be brought forward, and if there be a pretext[for saying] that it is contrary[to some other], since I am entirely convinced that no Scripture contradicts another, I shall admit rather that I do not understand what is recorded, and shall strive to persuade those who imagine that the Scriptures are contradictory, to be rather of the same opinion as myself. With what intent, then, you have brought forward the difficulty, God knows. But I shall remind you of what the passage says, in order that you may recognise even from this very[place] that God gives glory to His Christ alone. And I shall take up some short passages, sirs, those which are in connection with what has been said by Trypho, and those which are also joined on in consecutive order. For I will not repeat those of another section, but those which are joined together in one. Do you also give me your attention.[The words] are these:'Thus saith the Lord, the God that created the heavens, and made(6) them fast, that established the earth, and that which is in it; and gave breath to the people upon it, and spirit to them who walk therein: I the Lord God have called Thee in righteousness, and will hold Thine hand, and will strengthen Thee; and I have given Thee for a covenant of the people, for a light of the Gentiles, to open the eyes of the blind, to bring out them that are bound from the chains, and those who sit in darkness from the prison-house. I am the Lord God; this is my name: my glory will I not give to another, nor my virtues to graven images. Behold, the former things are come to pass; new things which I announce, and before they are announced they are made manifest to you. Sing unto the Lord a new song: His sovereignty[is] from the end of the earth.[Sing], ye who descend into the sea, and continually sail(7)[on it]; ye islands, and inhabitants thereof. Rejoice, O wilderness, and the villages thereof, and the houses; and the inhabitants of Cedar shall rejoice, and the inhabitants of the rock shall cry aloud from the top of the mountains: they shall give glory to God; they shall publish His virtues among the islands. The Lord God of hosts shall go forth, He shall destroy war utterly, He shall stir up zeal, and He shall cry aloud to the enemies with strength.' " (1) And when I repeated this, I said to them, "Have you perceived, my friends, that God says He will give Him whom He has established as a light of the Gentiles, glory, and to no other; and not, as Trypho said, that God was retaining the glory to Himself?"
Then Trypho answered, "We have perceived this also; pass on therefore to the remainder of the discourse."
CHAP. LXVI.--HE PROVES FROM ISAIAH THAT GOD WAS BORN FROM A VIRGIN.
And I, resuming the discourse where I had left off(2) at a previous stage, when proving that He was born of a virgin, and that His birth of a virgin had been predicted by Isaiah, quoted again the same prophecy. It is as follows 'And the Lord spoke again to Ahaz, saying, Ask for thyself a sign from the Lord thy God, in the depth or in the height. And Ahaz said I will not ask, neither will I tempt the Lord. And Isaiah said, Hear then, O house of David; Is it no small thing for you to contend with men? And how do you contend with the Lord? Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign; Behold, the virgin shall conceive, and shall bear a son, and they shall call his name Immanuel. Butter and honey shall he eat; before he knows or prefers the evil he will choose out the good. For before the child knows ill or good, he rejects evil by choosing out the good. For before the child knows how to call father or mother, he shall receive the power of Damascus, and the spoil of Samaria, in presence of the king of Assyria. And the land shall be forsaken, which(3) thou shalt with difficulty endure in consequence of the presence of its two kings. But God shall bring on thee, and on thy people, and on the house of thy father, days which have not yet come upon thee since the day in which Ephraim took away from Judah the king of Assyria.' "(4) And I continued: "Now it is evident to all, that in the race of Abraham according to the flesh no one has been born of a virgin, or is said to have been born[of a virgin], save this our Christ."
CHAP. LXVII.--TRYPHO COMPARES JESUS WITH PERSEUS; AND WOULD PREFER[TO SAY]† THAT HE WAS ELECTED[TO BE CHRIST] ON ACCOUNT OF OBSERVANCE OF THE† LAW. JUSTIN SPEAKS OF THE LAW AS FORMERLY.
And Trypho answered, "The Scripture has not, 'Behold, the virgin shall conceive, and bear a son,' but, ' Behold, the young woman shall conceive, and bear a son,' and so on, as you quoted. But the whole prophecy refers to Hezekiah, and it is proved that it was fulfilled in him, according to the terms of this prophecy. Moreover, in the fables of those who are called Greeks, it is written that Perseus was begotten of Danae, who was a virgin; he who was called among them Zeus having descended on her in the form of a golden shower. And you ought to feel ashamed when you make assertions similar to theirs, and rather[should] say that this Jesus was born man of men. And if you prove from the Scriptures that He is the Christ, and that on account of having led a life conformed to the law, and perfect, He deserved the honour of being elected to be Christ,[it is well]; but do not venture to tell monstrous phenomena, lest you be convicted of talking foolishly like the Greeks."
Then I said to this, "Trypho, I wish to persuade you, and all men in short, of this, that even though you talk worse things in ridicule and in jest, you will not move me from my fixed design; but I shall always adduce from the words which you think can be brought forward[by you] as proof[of your own views], the demonstration of what I have stated along with the testimony of the Scriptures. You are not, however, acting fairly or truthfully in attempting to undo those things in which there has been constantly agreement between us; namely, that certain commands were instituted by Moses on account of the hardness of your people's hearts. For you said that, by reason of His living conformably to law, He was elected and became Christ, if indeed He were proved to be so."
And Trypho said, "You admitted(5) to us that He was both circumcised, and observed the other legal ceremonies ordained by Moses."
And I replied, "I have admitted it, and do admit it: yet I have admitted that He endured all these not as if He were justified by them, but completing the dispensation which His Father, the Maker of all things, and Lord and God, wished Him[to complete] (Paul says Christ fulfilled the law). For I admit that He endured crucifixion and death, and the incarnation, and the suffering of as many afflictions as your nation put upon Him. But since again you dissent from that to which you but lately assented, Trypho, answer me: Are those righteous patriarchs who lived before Moses, who observed none of those[ordinances] which, the Scripture shows, received the commencement of[their] institution from Moses, saved,[and have they attained to] the inheritance of the blessed?"
And Trypho said, "The Scriptures compel me to admit it."
†"Likewise I again ask you," said I, "did God enjoin your fathers to present the offerings and sacrifices because He had need of them, or because of the hardness of their hearts and tendency to idolatry?" (They were not able to walk in the spirit their hearts were not circumsized so God gave them the law and ordinances so that they would be occupied by them to keep their mind on him.)
"The latter," said he, "the Scriptures in like manner compel us to admit."
"Likewise," said I, "did not the Scriptures predict that God promised to dispense a new covenant besides that which[was dispensed] in the mountain Horeb?"
This, too, he replied, had been predicted. Then I
said again, "Was not the old covenant
laid on your fathers with fear and trembling,
"What then?" said I: "God promised that there would be another covenant, not like that old one, and said that it would be laid on them without fear, and trembling, and lightnings, and that it would be such as to show what kind of commands and deeds God knows to be eternal and suited to every nation, and what commandments He has given, suiting them to the hardness of your people's hearts, as He exclaims also by the prophets."
"To this also," said he, "those who are lovers of truth and not lovers of strife must assuredly assent."
Then I replied, "I know not how you speak of persons very fond of strife,[since] you yourself oftentimes were plainly acting in this very manner, frequently contradicting what you had agreed to."
CHAP. LXVIII.--HE COMPLAINS OF THE OBSTINACY OF TRYPHO; HE ANSWERS HIS OBJECTION; HE CONVICTS THE JEWS OF BAD FAITH.
And Trypho said, "You endeavour to prove an incredible and well-nigh impossible thing;[namely], that God endured to be born and become man."
"If I undertook," said I, "to prove this by doctrines or arguments of man, you should not bear with me. But if I quote frequently Scriptures, and so many of them, referring to this point, and ask you to comprehend them, you are hard-hearted in the recognition of the mind and will of God. But if you wish to remain for ever so, I would not be injured at all; and for ever retaining the same[opinions] which I had before I met with you, I shall leave you."
And Trypho said," Look, my friend, you made yourself master of these[truths] with much labour and toil.(1) And we accordingly must diligently scrutinize all that we meet with, in order to give our assent to those things which the Scriptures compel us[to believe]."
Then I said to this, "I do not ask you not to strive earnestly by all means, in making an investigation of the matters inquired into; but[I ask you], when you have nothing to say, not to contradict those things which you said you had admitted."
And Trypho said, "So we shall endeavour to do."
I continued again: "In addition to the questions I have just now put to you, I wish to put more: for by means of these questions I shall strive to bring the discourse to a speedy termination."
And Trypho said, "Ask the questions."
Then I said, "Do you think that any other one is said to be worthy of worship and called Lord and God in the Scriptures, except the† Maker of all, and Christ, who by so many Scriptures was proved to you to have become man?"
And Trypho replied, "How can we admit this, when we have instituted so great an inquiry as to whether there is any other than the Father alone?"
Then I again said, "I must ask you this also, that I may know whether or not you are of a different opinion from that which you admitted some time ago."(2)
He replied, "It is not, sir."
Then again I, "Since you certainly admit these things, and since Scripture says, 'Who shall declare His generation?' ought you not now to suppose that He is not the seed of a human race?"
††† And Trypho said, "How then does the Word say to David, that out of his loins God shall take to Himself a Son, and shall establish His kingdom, and shall set Him on the throne of His glory?"
††† And I said, "Trypho, if the prophecy which Isaiah uttered, "Behold, the virgin shall conceive,' is said not to the house of David, but to another house of the twelve tribes, perhaps the matter would have some difficulty; but since this prophecy refers to the house of David, Isaiah has explained how that which was spoken by God to David in mystery would take place. But perhaps you are not aware of this, my friends, that there were many sayings written obscurely, or parabolically, or mysteriously, and symbolical actions, (Paul speaks of this in 1 Corinthians) which the prophets who lived after the persons who said or did them expounded." "Assuredly," said Trypho.
"If therefore, I shall show that this prophecy of Isaiah refers to our Christ, and not to Hezekiah, as you say, shall I not in this matter, too, compel you not to believe your teachers, who venture to assert that the explanation which your seventy elders that were with Ptolemy the king of the Egyptians gave (The authors of the Septuagint) , is untrue in certain respects? For some statements in the Scriptures, which appear explicitly to convict them of a foolish and vain opinion, these they venture to assert have not been so written. But other statements, which they fancy they can distort and harmonize with human actions,(1) these, they say, refer not to this Jesus Christ of ours, but to him of whom they are pleased to explain them. Thus, for instance, they have taught you that this Scripture which we are now discussing refers to Hezekiah, (The 70 ) in which, as I promised, I shall show they are wrong. And since they are compelled, they agree that some Scriptures which we mention to them, and which expressly prove that Christ was to suffer, to be worshipped, and[to be called] God, and which I have already recited to you, do refer indeed to Christ, but they venture to assert that this man is not Christ. But they admit that He will come to suffer, and to reign, and to be worshipped, and to be God;(2) and this opinion I shall in like manner show to be ridiculous and silly. But since I am pressed to answer first to what was said by you in jest, I shall make answer to it, and shall afterwards give replies to what follows.
CHAP. LXIX.--THE DEVIL, SINCE HE EMULATES THE TRUTH, HAS INVENTED FABLES ABOUT BACCHUS, HERCULES, AND ∆SCULAPIUS.
"Be well assured, then, Trypho," I continued, "that I am established in the knowledge of and faith in the Scriptures by those counterfeits which he who is called the devil is said to have performed among the Greeks; just as some were wrought by the Magi in Egypt, and others by the false prophets in Elijah's days. For when they tell that Bacchus, son of Jupiter, was begotten by[Jupiter's] intercourse with Semele, and that he was the discoverer of the vine; and when they relate, that being torn in pieces, and having died, he rose again, and ascended to heaven; and when they introduce wine(3) into his mysteries, do I not perceive that[the devil] has imitated the prophecy announced by the patriarch Jacob, and recorded by Moses? And when they tell that Hercules was strong, and travelled over all the world, and was begotten by Jove of Alcmene, and ascended to heaven when he died, do I not perceive that the Scripture which speaks of Christ, 'strong as a giant to run his race,'(4) has been in like manner imitated? And when he[the devil] brings forward ∆sculapius as the raiser of the dead and healer of all diseases, may I not say that in this matter likewise he has imitated the prophecies about Christ? But since I have not quoted to you such Scripture as tells that Christ will do these things, I must necessarily remind you of one such: from which you can understand, how that to those destitute of a knowledge of God, I mean the Gentiles, who, 'having eyes, saw not, and having a heart, understood not,' worshipping the images of wood,[how even to them] Scripture prophesied that they would renounce these[vanities], and hope in this Christ. It is thus written: 'Rejoice, thirsty wilderness: let the wilderness be glad, and blossom as the lily: the deserts of the Jordan shall both blossom and be glad: and the glory of Lebanon was given to it, and the honour of Carmel. And my people shall see the exaltation of the Lord, and the glory of God. Be strong, ye careless hands and enfeebled knees. Be comforted, ye faint in soul: be strong, fear not. Behold, our God gives, and will give, retributive judgment. He shall come and save us. Then the eyes of the blind shall be opened, and the ears of the deaf shall hear. Then the lame shall leap as an hart, and the tongue of the stammerers shall be distinct: for water has broken forth in the wilderness, and a valley in the thirsty land; and the parched ground shall become pools, and a spring of water shall[rise up] in the thirsty land.'(5) The spring of living water which gushed forth from God in the land destitute of the knowledge of God, namely the land of the Gentiles, was this Christ, who also appeared in your nation, and healed those who were maimed, and deaf, and lame in body from their birth, causing them to leap, to hear, and to see, by His word. And having raised the dead, and causing them to live, by His deeds He compelled the men who lived at that time to recognise Him. But though they saw such works, they asserted it was magical art. For they dared to call Him a magician, and a deceiver of the people. Yet He wrought such works, and persuaded those who were[destined to] believe on Him; for even if any one be labouring under a defect of body, yet be an observer of the doctrines delivered by Him, He shall raise him up at His second advent perfectly sound, after He has made him immortal, and incorruptible, and free from grief.
CHAP. LXX.--SO ALSO THE MYSTERIES OF MITHRAS ARE DISTORTED FROM THE PROPHECIES OF DANIEL AND ISAIAH.
"And when those who record the mysteries of Mithras say that he was begotten of a rock, and call the place where those who believe in him are initiated a cave, do I not perceive here that the utterance of Daniel, that a stone without hands was cut out of a great mountain, has been imitated by them, and that they have attempted likewise to imitate the whole of Isaiah's(1) words?(2) For they(3) contrived that the words of righteousness be quoted also by them.(4) But I must repeat to you the words of Isaiah referred to, in order that from them you may know that these things are so. They are these: 'Hear, ye that are far off, what I have done; those that are near shall know my might. The sinners in Zion are removed; trembling shall seize the impious. Who shall announce to you the everlasting place? The man who walks in righteousness, speaks in the right way, hates sin and unrighteousness, and keeps his hands pure from bribes, stops the ears from hearing the unjust judgment of blood closes the eyes from seeing unrighteousness: he shall dwell in the lofty cave of the strong rock. Bread shall be given to him, and his water[shall be] sure. Ye shall see the King with glory, and your eyes shall look far off. Your soul shall pursue diligently the fear of the Lord. Where is the scribe? where are the counsellors? where is he that numbers those who are nourished,--the small and great people? with whom they did not take counsel, nor knew the depth of the voices, so that they heard not. The people who are become depreciated, and there is no understanding in him who hears.'(5) Now it is evident, that in this prophecy[allusion is made] to the bread which our Christ gave us to eat,(6) in remembrance of His being made flesh for the sake of His believers, for whom also He suffered; and to the cup which He gave us to drink,(6) in remembrance of His own blood, with giving of thanks. And this prophecy proves that we shall behold this very King with glory; and the very terms of the prophecy declare loudly, that the people foreknown to believe in Him were fore-known to pursue diligently the fear of the Lord. Moreover, these Scriptures are equally explicit in saying, that those who are reputed to know the writings of the Scriptures, and who hear the prophecies, have no understanding. And when I hear, Trypho," said I, "that Perseus was begotten of a virgin, I understand that the deceiving serpent counterfeited also this.
CHAP. LXXI.--THE JEWS REJECT THE INTERPRETATION OF THE LXX., FROM WHICH, MOREOVER, THEY HAVE TAKEN AWAY SOME PASSAGES.
††† "But I am far from putting reliance in your teachers, who refuse to admit that the interpretation made by the seventy elders who were with Ptolemy[king] of the Egyptians is a correct one; and they attempt to frame another.And I wish you to observe, that they have altogether taken away many Scriptures from the translations effected by those seventy elders who were with Ptolemy, and by which this very man who was crucified is proved to have been set forth expressly as God, and man, and as being crucified, and as dying; but since I am aware that this is denied by all of your nation, I do not address myself to these points, but I proceed(7) to carry on my discussions by means of those passages which are still admitted by you. For you assent to those which I have brought before your attention, except that you contradict the statement, 'Behold, the virgin shall conceive,' and say it ought to be read, 'Behold, the young woman shall conceive.' And I promised to prove that the prophecy referred, not, as you were taught, to Hezekiah, but to this Christ of mine: and now I shall go to the proof."
Here Trypho remarked, "We ask you first of all to tell us some of the Scriptures which you allege have been completely cancelled."
CHAP. LXXII.--PASSAGES HAVE BEEN REMOVED BY THE JEWS FROM ESDRAS AND††††
And I said, "I shall do as you please. From the statements, then, which Esdras made in reference to the law of the passover, they have taken away the following: 'And Esdras said to the people, This passover is our Saviour and our refuge. And if you have understood, and your heart has taken it in, that we shall humble Him on a standard, and(8) thereafter hope in Him, then this place shall not be forsaken for ever, says the God of hosts. But if you will not believe Him, and will not listen to His declaration, you shall be a laughing-stock to the nations.'(9) And from the sayings of Jeremiah 18:11 they have cut out the following: 'I[was] like a lamb that is brought to the slaughter: they devised a device against me, saying, Come, let us lay on wood on His bread, and let us blot Him out from the land of the living; and His name shall no more be remembered.'(10) And since this passage from the sayings of Jeremiah is still written in some copies 0[of the Scriptures] in the synagogues of the Jews(for it is only a short time since they were cut out), and since from these words it is demonstrated that the Jews deliberated about the Christ Himself, to crucify and put Him to death, He Himself is both declared to be led as a sheep to the slaughter, as was predicted by Isaiah, and is here represented as a harmless lamb; but being in a difficulty about them, they give themselves over to blasphemy. And again, from the sayings of the same Jeremiah these have been cut out: 'The Lord God remembered His dead people of Israel who lay in the graves; and He descended to preach to them His own salvation.'(1)
CHAP. LXXIII.--[THE WORDS] "FROM† THE WOOD" HAVE BEEN† CUT OUT OF PS.96
"And from the ninety-fifth(ninety-sixth) Psalm they have taken away this short saying of the words of David: 'From the wood.'(2) For when the passage said, 'Tell ye among the nations, the Lord hath reigned from the wood,' they have left, 'Tell ye among the nations, the Lord hath reigned.' Now no one of your people has ever been said to have reigned as God and Lord among the nations, with the exception of Him only who was crucified, of whom also the Holy Spirit affirms in the same Psalm that He was raised again, and freed from[the grave], declaring that there is none like Him among the gods of the nations: for they are idols of demons. But I shall repeat the whole Psalm to you, that you may perceive what has been said. It is thus: 'Sing unto the Lord a new song; sing unto the Lord, all the earth. Sing unto the Lord, and bless His name; show forth His salvation from day to day. Declare His glory among the nations, His wonders among all people. For the Lord is great, and greatly to be praised: He is to be feared above all the gods. For all the gods of the nations are demons but the Lord made the heavens. Confession and beauty are in His presence; holiness and magnificence are in His sanctuary. Bring to the Lord, O ye countries of the nations, bring to the Lord glory and honour, bring to the Lord glory in His name. Take sacrifices, and go into His courts; worship the Lord in His holy temple. Let the whole earth be moved before Him tell ye among the nations, the Lord hath reigned.(3) For He hath established the world, which shall not be moved; He shall judge the nations with equity. Let the heavens rejoice, and the earth be glad; let the sea and its fulness shake. Let the fields and all therein be joyful. Let all the trees of the wood be glad before the Lord: for He comes, for He comes to judge the earth. He shall judge the world with righteousness, and the people with His truth.' "
Here Trypho remarked, "Whether[or not] the rulers of the people have erased any portion of the Scriptures, as you affirm, God knows; but it seems incredible."
"Assuredly," said I, "it does seem incredible. For it is more horrible than the calf which they made, when satisfied with manna on the earth; or than the sacrifice of children to demons; or than the slaying of the prophets. But," said I, "you appear to me not to have heard the Scriptures which I said they had stolen away. For such as have been quoted are more than enough to prove the points in dispute, besides those which are retained by us,(4) and shall yet be brought forward."
CHAP. LXXIV.--THE BEGINNING OF PS. 96. IS ATTRIBUTED TO THE FATHER[BY TRYPHO]. BUT[IT REFERS] TO CHRIST BY THESE WORDS: "TELL YE AMONG THE† NATIONS THAT THE LORD," ETC.
Then Trypho said, "We know that you quoted these because we asked you. But it does not appear to me that this Psalm which you quoted last from the words of David refers to any other than the Father and Maker of the heavens and earth. You, however, asserted that it referred to Him who suffered, whom you also are eagerly endeavouring to prove to be Christ."
††† And I answered, "Attend to me, I beseech you, while I speak of the statement which the Holy Spirit gave utterance to in this Psalm; and you shall know that I speak not sinfully, and that we(5) are not really bewitched; for so you shall be enabled of yourselves to understand many other statements made by the Holy Spirit. 'Sing unto the Lord a new song; sing unto the Lord, all the earth: sing unto the Lord, and bless His name; show forth His salvation from day to day, His wonderful works among all people.' He bids the inhabitants of all the earth, who have known the mystery of this salvation, i.e., the suffering of Christ, by which He saved them, sing and give praises to God the Father of all things, and recognise that He is to be praised and feared, and that He is the Maker of heaven and earth, who effected this salvation in behalf of the human race, who also was crucified and was dead, and who was deemed worthy by Him(God) to reign over all the earth. As[is clearly seen(6)] also by the land into which[He said] He would bring[your fathers];[for He thus speaks]:(1) 'This people[shall go a whoring after other gods], and shall forsake Me, and shall break my covenant which I made with them in that day; and I will forsake them, and will turn away My face from them; and they shall be devoured,(2) and many evils and afflictions shall find them out; and they shall say in that day, Because the Lord my God is not amongst us, these misfortunes have found us out. And I shall certainly turn away My face from them in that day, on account of all the evils which they have committed, in that they have turned to other gods.'(3)
CHAP. LXXV.--IT IS PROVED THAT JESUS WAS THE NAME OF GOD IN THE BOOK OF EXODUS.
"Moreover, in the book of Exodus we have also perceived that the name of God Himself which, He says, was not revealed to Abraham or to Jacob, was Jesus, and was declared mysteriously through Moses. Thus it is written: 'And the Lord spake to Moses, Say to this people, Behold, I send My angel (messenger) before thy face, to keep thee in the way, to bring thee into the land which I have prepared for thee. Give heed to Him, and obey Him; do not disobey Him. For He will not draw back from you; for My name is in Him.'(4) Now understand that He who led your fathers into the land is called by this name Jesus, and first called Auses(5)(Oshea). For if you shall understand this, you shall likewise perceive that the name of Him who said to Moses, 'for My name is in Him,' was Jesus. For, indeed, He was also called Israel, and Jacob's name was changed to this also. Now Isaiah shows that those prophets who are sent to publish tidings from God are called His angels and apostles. For Isaiah says in a certain place, 'Send me.'(6) And that the prophet whose name was changed, Jesus[Joshua], was strong and great, is manifest to all. If, then, we know that God revealed Himself in so many forms to Abraham, and to† Jacob, and to Moses, how are we at a loss, and† do not believe that, according to the will of the Father of all things, it was possible for Him to be born man of the Virgin, especially after we have such(7) Scriptures, from which it can be plainly perceived that He became so according to the will of the Father?