Sidebilder
PDF
ePub

6

tensis,' that he was an apostate from the rule,' it is plain the meaning is, he had deviated in his doctrine from the Creed, the rule of faith. Agreeably to this, it is commonly styled among the Greeks 95, όρος and έκδοσις πίστεως, the determination, or exposition of the faith; and sometimes simply plotis, the faith 96; which answers to the Latin name regula fidei, the rule of faith, the common appellation of it in Irenæus 97, Tertullian 98, Novatian 99, and St. Jerom!, where they speak of heretics, and their deviations from the common articles of the Christian faith contained in the creeds of the

Church. Why called 3. Another ordinary appellation of the Creed in the ancient mathema.

Greek writers is uáðnua, the lesson, so called from the obligation the catechumens were under to learn it. This may easily be mistaken by an unwary reader for a lesson in the Bible, unless where some note of distinction is added to it. Therefore, when we read in the Council of Constantinople, under Mennas 2, that after the reading of the Gospel, in time of the communion-service, “the holy lesson was read according to custom,' we are not to understand it of any other lesson out of the Bible, but of the Creed, which was then made part of

[ocr errors]

mata petekņudev, ovdèv dei toù Ew Omnipotens, &c.—Ibid. (p. 93. 11.) όντος τάς πράξεις κρίνειν.

Hanc ergo tenentes regulam, &c. 95 Socrat. 1. 2. c. 39. (v. 2. p. 150. 98 De Præscript. c. 13. (p. 206 d.) 46.).... Téos EiX Bavos rñs Tapooù Regula est autem fidei, qua crediπροεστώς εκκλησίας μέγα ανέκραγε, tur unum omnino Deum esse, &c.Néyw un xpnval kaivnv ünayopeúelv De Virgin. Veland. c. 1. (p. 373 a.) πίστεως έκδοσιν, αλλά την ήδη πρό- Regula autem fidei una omnino est, τερον εν 'Αντιοχεία τοις εγκαινίοις sola immobilis et irreformabilis, creυπαγορευθείσαν οφείλειν κρατειν.- dendi scilicet in unicum Deum omIbid. c. 40. (p. 151. 13.) Taûra eleye nipotentem, &c. βουλόμενος ετέραν έκδοσιν πίστεως 99 De Trinit. c. 1. (ap. Galland. t. årTeloeveykelv.-Ibid. 1. 5. c. 4. (p. 3. p. 287 a.) Regula exigit veritatis, 265. 34.) .... 'Επιμιγνύμενοι αυτοί ut primo omnium credamus in τε και οι εξ αρχής τον όρον της έν Deum Patrem et Dominum OmniΝικαία στέρξαντες πίστεως.

potentem, &c.— Ibid. c. 9. (p. 293 a.) 96 Theodoret. l. 1. c.7. (v. 3. p. Eadem regula veritatis docet nos, 27. 21.) Outw toù dvooeßoüs ék- credere, post Patrem, etiam in Fiποδών γενομένου, συμφώνως άπαντες lium Dei Jesum Christum, &c. την μέχρι και νυν εν ταις εκκλησίαις | Ep. 54. [al. 41.] ad Marcellam TToNcTevouévny riote inayopevoay- contra errores Montani. (t. 1. p. τες, και ταϊς υπογραφαϊς βεβαιώσαν- 186 e.) Primum in fidei regula disτες, διέλυσαν το συνέδριον.

crepamus, &c. 97 L. 1. C. 19. (p. 93. 11.) Cum 2 Act. 5. (t. 5. p. 185 c.) .... Toù teneamus autem nos regulam veri. αγίου μαθήματος κατά το συνηθες tatis, id est, quia sit Unus Deus dexoévros.

5

the communion-service. And so Socrates 3 sometimes uses the word; and Valesius + has observed, that in two manuscripts of that author, where the Nicene Creed is recited, the title of mathema is set before it. But Leontius Byzantinus 5 speaks more explicitly, and calls it, by way of distinction, the decree, or lesson of faith, speaking of the Creed, which the fathers of the Council of Chalcedon were about to make. 4. Valesius 6 has also observed out of Socrates, that it is Why called

γράμμα and Sometimes styled γραφή simply and absolutely, and γράμμα,

γραφή. which words, though they are usually taken to signify the Holy Scripture, yet here they must have another meaning: for the Creed, properly speaking, is not an inspired writing, unless in that sense as it may be said to be collected out of the inspired writings; but here those words signify only, in a common sense, letters or learning; and so are used as the foregoing word, mathema, with a peculiar reference to the learning of the catechumens. Some also allege Cyprian? for another name, as if he called the Creed peculiarly the sacrament of faith. But I am not satisfied that Cyprian's meaning is so to be restrained. For he is rather speaking in general against profaning the mysteries of religion, which include the sacraments, or any other religious rites, as well as the Creed; applying that text of Scripture to his purpose, “ Give not that which is holy unto the dogs, neither cast ye your pearls before

3 L. 3. C. 25. (v. 2. p. 207. 39.)... p. 28. n. 1.) Scribit ... Theodoritus Kai tà ảoltà roù padýpatos.-Usher, in superiore capite, Arianæ factionis de Symbolis, p. 20. (Works, v. 7. episcopos formulam fidei a se comp. 320.), "Opov tīs ziotews, TOŪTÓ positam obtulisse Concilio, quæ ab έστι το άγιον μάθημα ήτου σύμβολον, omnibus uno consensu repudiata K.T.

T.1., shows the same out of Justi- est. Ad quem locum observavi, nian, Maxentius, and Photius. formulam illam intelligi, quam Eu

4 Not. in Socrat. 1. 1. c. 8. (ibid. sebius Pamphili in Epistola ad Cæp. 24. n. 1.) ad verba Tņu de Trivsarienses proposuisse se dicit. Hæc ypapny Terroinkacı. Post hæc verba, est igitur, quam Eustathius hoc loco ante Symbolum Nicænum, in Co- vocat ypáupa Evoeßiov. Nam ypáxdice Florentino et Sfortiano addun- ja et ypaon pro formula fidei sætur haec verba, το μάθημα. Ita pissime sumitur, ut in libro 4. SozoGræci vocabant symbolum fidei, eo meni legere memini. Sic Eustathius quod a catechumenis memoriter dis- paullo post ovupóvous ypáppaqı ceretur.

dicit, de formula icænæ fidei lo5 De Sectis, Act. 6. (ap. Bibl. quens. Patr. Gr. Lat. t. I. p. 515 c. 6.)...

7 Testim. ad Quirin. 1. 3. c. 50. "Edoçev aútots GOTE õpov riotews (pp. 41,57.) Sacramentum fidei non και μάθημα ποιήσαι.

esse profanandum. Ne dederitis 6 Not. in Theodor. l. 1. c. 8. (v. 3. sanctum canibus, &c.

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

swine, lest they tread them under their feet, and turn again and rend you.” (Matth. 7,6.] Or, if it be limited to any par

[ ticular mystery, it should rather signify baptism than the Creed; for baptism is sometimes called the sacrament of faith,' by St. Austin S, and the sacrament of faith and repentance,' by Fulgentius 9 and others, as I shall more particularly show when I come to treat of baptism. For which reason I do not take this to be any particular name given to the Creed by any ancient writer : but the Creed is the faith itself, the credulitas, as some middle-age writers 10 call it, and the sacra

ment of faith is baptism. Whether 5. The next inquiry is into the original and nature of the that which is common

ancient Creeds; which will admit of three questions : First, ly called the whether that, which is commonly called the Apostles' Creed, Apostles' Creed, was was composed by the Apostles in the same form of words, as composed it is now used in the Church! Second, whether the Apostles by the Apostles in the made or used any Creeds at all for the institution of catepresent form of

chumens, or the administration of baptism? Third, if they words. did, what articles were contained in them? The first question

is now generally resolved in the negative, by learned men, though many both of the Ancients and Moderns have been of a different opinion. Some have thought that the twelve Apostles in a full meeting, composed the Creed in the very same form of words as now it is used in the Church; and others have gone so far as to pretend to tell what article was composed by every particular Apostle. Dr. Comber 11 is

8 Ep. 23. [al. 98.] ad Bonifac. neant; et Gloria Patri! ac Sanctus, (t. 2. p. 267 f.) Sicut ergo secundum atque Credulitas [i. e. Symbolum), quendam modum sacramentum cor- et Kyrie Eleison ! a cunctis reverenporis Christi corpus Christi est, sa- ter canatur.-Edict. Reccared. Reg. cramentum sanguinis Christi san- ad Sacerdotes, ad calc. C. Tolet. 3. guis Christi est, ita sacramentum (t. 5. p. 1009 b.) Ut primum populi, fidei fides est.

quam credulitatem teneant, fatean9 De Fid. ad Petr. c. 30. (Oper. tur; et sic corda fide purificata ad August. t. 6. append. p. 31 d. 6.) Christi corpus et sanguinem perPer sacramentum fidei et pæniten- cipiendum exhibeant. Dum enim tiæ, id est, per baptismum liberatus. constitutio hæc fuerit perenniter

10 Vid. Herardi Turonensis Capi- conservata in Dei ecclesia, et fidetul. 140. ap. Wharton. Auctar. Hist. lium ex solido corroboratur creduDogmat. Usserii. (p. 368.) Ante litas, et, perfidia infidelium confumissam completam ne exeant, et tata, ad id quod repetitum sæpius Verbum Dei intente audiant (omnes recognoscit, facillime inclinatur. fideles] de Oratione Dominica et 11 Companion to the Temple, p. Symbolo, ut memoriter omnes te- 132. (part. 1. p. 330. Lond. 1679.)

so positive in the matter, as to say, “We have no better

,

• medium to prove the books were written by those authors whose names they bear, than the unanimous testimony of antiquity; and by that we can abundantly prove the Apostles were the authors of this Creed.' For this he cites Clemens Romanus, Irenæus, Origen, Tertullian, Ruffinus, Ambrose, Austin, Jerom, Pope Leo, Maximus Taurinensis, Cassian, and Isidore. But none of these writers, except Ruffinus, speak home to his purpose; but only say, the creeds in general are of apostolical institution ; which, for the substance, no one denies; for they speak of several forms, and yet ascribe them all to the Apostles: which is an argument, they did not mean this particular form any more than others. For the Nicene Creed is often called the Apostles' Creed; and yet no one believes that that Creed was composed, totidem verbis, by the Apostles. Ruffinus 12 indeed seems to say, there ancient tradition, that the Apostles, being about to depart from Jerusalem, first settled a rule for their future preaching; lest, after they were separated from one another, they should expound different doctrines to those whom they invited to the Christian faith. Wherefore being all assembled together, and filled with the Holy Ghost, they composed this short rule of their preaching, each one contributing his sentence, and left it as a rule to be given to all believers.' And for this reason, he thinks, it might be called the symbol, because that word in Greek signifies both a test, and a collation of opinions together. The author 13 under the name of St. Austin is a

6

was an

12 Expos. Symbol. ad calc. Cypr. justissimis causis appellare volup. 17. (p. 154.) Discessuri itaque ab erunt. Symbolum enim Græce et invicem normam prius futuræ sibi indicium dici potest, et collatio, hoc prædicationis in commune consti- est, quod plures in unum conferunt. tuunt; ne forte alius ab alio abducti, 13 Serm. 115. al. 42. de Temp. in diversum aliquid his, qui ad fidem append. t. 10. p.675. [al. Serm. 241. Christi invitabantur, exponerent. append. de Symbol. Serm. 5.] (t. 5. Omnes ergo in uno positi, et Spi- append. p. 395 g.) Petrus dixit, ritu Sancto repleti, breve istud fu- Credo in Deum, Patrem Omnipoturæ sibi, ut diximus, prædicatio- tentem. Joannes dixit, Creatorem nis indicium, conferendo in unum cæli et terræ. Jacobus dixit, Credo quod sentiebat unusquisque, com- et in Jesum Christum, filium ejus ponunt ; atque hanc credentibus unicum, Dominum nostrum. Ảndandam esse regulam statuunt. dreas dixit, Qui conceptus est de Symbolum autem hoc multis et Spiritu Sancto, natus Maria Virgine.

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

6

6

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

little more particular in the story: for he pretends to tell us what article was put in by each particular Apostle: Peter said, . I believe in God the Father Almighty. John, 'Maker of heaven and earth.' James, 'And in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord.' Andrew added, “Who was conceived by the Holy Ghost, born of the Virgin Mary. Philip said, ' Suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, dead, and buried.' Thomas, • He descended into hell; the third day he rose again from the dead.' Bartholomew, 'He ascended into heaven, and sitteth at the right hand of God the Father Almighty.' Matthew, • From thence he shall come to judge the quick and the dead.' James the son of Alphæus added, “I believe in the Holy Ghost, the holy Catholic Church.' Simon Zelotes, “ The communion of Saints, the forgiveness of sins.' Jude, the brother of James, " The resurrection of the body. Matthias, · Life everlasting.'

But now there is an insuperable difficulty lies against this tradition, which is this, that there are two or three articles here mentioned, which are known not to have been in this Creed for three or four ages at least. For Ruffinus himself 14 tells us, the descent into hell’ was neither in the Roman Creed, which is what we call the Apostles' Creed, nor yet in any Creed of the Eastern Churches; only the sense of it might be said to be couched in that other expression, · He was buried.' Bp. Usher and Bp. Pearson have demonstrated the truth of this observation by a particular induction from all the ancient Creeds, and showed this article to be wanting in them all for four hundred years, except the Creed of Aquileia, which Ruffinus expounds, and the Creed of the Council of

6

[ocr errors]

Philippus ait, Passus sub Pontio remissionem peccatorum. Judas JaPilato, crucifixus, mortuus, et se- cobi, Carnis resurrectionem. Matpultus. Thomas ait, Descendit ad thias complevit, Vitam æternam. inferna, tertia die resurrexit a mor- Amen. tuis. Bartholomæus dixit, Ascendit 14 Expos. Symbol. ad calc. Cypr. ad cælos, sedet ad dexteram Dei p. 22. (p. 158.) Sciendum sane est, Patris Omnipotentis. Matthæus dix- quod in Ecclesiæ Romanæ Symbolo it, Inde venturus judicare vivos et non habetur additum, descendit ad mortuos. Jacobus Alphæi, Credo inferna, sed neque in Orientis Eccleet in Spiritum Sanctum, sanctam siis habetur hic sermo. Vis tamen Ecclesiam Catholicam. Simon Ze verbi eadem videtur esse in eo quod lotes, Sanctorum communionem, sepultus dicitur.

« ForrigeFortsett »