Chap. XII. — The Cross of Christ Frequently Announced in the Old Testament.
In like manner He points to the cross of Christ in another prophet, who saith,117 “And when shall these things be accomplished? And the Lord saith, When a tree shall be bent down, and again arise, and when blood shall flow out of wood.”118 Here again you have an intimation concerning the cross, and Him who should be crucified. Yet again He speaks of this119 in Moses, when Israel was attacked by strangers. And that He might remind them, when assailed, that it was on account of their sins they were delivered to death, the Spirit speaks to the heart of Moses, that he should make a figure of the cross,120 and of Him about to suffer thereon; for unless they put their trust in Him, they shall be overcome for ever. Moses therefore placed one weapon above another in the midst of the hill,121 and 145 standing upon it, so as to be higher than all the people, he stretched forth his hands,122 and thus again Israel acquired the mastery. But when again he let down his hands, they were again destroyed. For what reason? That they might know that they could not be saved unless they put their trust in Him.123 And in another prophet He declares, “All day long I have stretched forth My hands to an unbelieving people, and one that gainsays My righteous way.” (Isa_65:2) And again Moses makes a type of Jesus, [signifying] that it was necessary for Him to suffer, [and also] that He would be the author of life124 [to others], whom they believed to have destroyed on the cross125 when Israel was failing. For since transgression was committed by Eve through means of the serpent, [the Lord] brought it to pass that every [kind of] serpents bit them, and they died, (Comp. Num_21:6-9; Joh_3:14-18) that He might convince them, that on account of their transgression they were given over to the straits of death. Moreover Moses, when he commanded, “Ye shall not have any graven or molten [image] for your God,”126 did so that he might reveal a type of Jesus. Moses then makes a brazen serpent, and places it upon a beam,127 and by proclamation assembles the people. When, therefore, they were come together, they besought Moses that he would offer sacrifice128 in their behalf, and pray for their recovery. And Moses spake unto them, saying, “When any one of you is bitten, let him come to the serpent placed on the pole; and let him hope and believe, that even though dead, it is able to give him life, and immediately he shall be restored.” (Num_21:9) And they did so. Thou hast in this also [an indication of] the glory of Jesus; for in Him and to Him are all things. (Comp. Col_1:16) What, again, says Moses to Jesus (Joshua) the son of Nave, when he gave him129 this name, as being a prophet, with this view only, that all the people might hear that the Father would reveal all things concerning His Son Jesus to the son130 of Nave? This name then being given him when he sent him to spy out the land, he said, “Take a book into thy hands, and write what the Lord declares, that the Son of God will in the last days cut off from the roots all the house of Amalek.” (Exo_17:14) Behold again: Jesus who was manifested, both by type and in the flesh, (Comp. 1Ti_3:16) is not the Son of man, but the Son of God. Since, therefore, they were to say that Christ was the son131 of David, fearing and understanding the error of the wicked, he saith, “The Lord said unto my Lord, Sit at My right hand, until I make Thine enemies Thy footstool.” (Psa_110:1; Mat_22:43-45) And again, thus saith Isaiah, “The Lord said to Christ,132 my Lord, whose right hand I have holden,133 that the nations should yield obedience before Him; and I will break in pieces the strength of kings.” (Isa_45:1) Behold how David calleth Him Lord and the Son of God.
Chap. XIII. — Christians, and Not Jews, the Heirs of the Covenant.
But let us see if this people134 is the heir, or the former, and if the covenant belongs to us or to them. Hear ye now what the Scripture saith concerning the people. Isaac prayed for Rebecca his wife, because she was barren; and she conceived. (Gen_25:21) Furthermore also, Rebecca went forth to inquire of the Lord; and the Lord said to her, “Two nations are in thy womb, and two peoples in thy belly; and the one people shall surpass the other, and the elder shall serve the younger.” (Gen_25:23) You ought to understand who was Isaac, who Rebecca, and concerning what persons He declared that this people should be greater than that. And in another prophecy Jacob speaks more clearly to his son Joseph, saying, “Behold, the Lord hath not deprived me of thy presence; bring thy sons to me, that I may bless them.” (Gen_48:11, Gen_48:9) And he brought Manasseh and Ephraim, desiring that Manasseh135 should be blessed, because he was the elder. With this view Joseph led him to the right hand of his father Jacob. But Jacob saw in spirit the type of the people to arise afterwards. And what says [the Scripture]? And Jacob changed the direction of his bands, and laid his right hand upon the head of Ephraim, the second and younger, and blessed him. And Joseph said to Jacob, “Transfer thy right hand to the head of Manasseh,135 for he is my first-born son.” (Gen_48:18) And Jacob said, “I know it, my son, I know it; but the elder shall serve the younger: yet he also shall be blessed.” (Gen_48:19) Ye see on whom he laid136 [his hands], that this people should be first, and 146 heir of the covenant. If then, still further, the same thing was intimated through Abraham, we reach the perfection of our knowledge. What, then, says He to Abraham? “Because thou hast believed,137 it is imputed to thee for righteousness: behold, I have made thee the father of those nations who believe in the Lord while in [a state of] uncircumcision.” (Gen_15:6, Gen_17:5; comp. Rom_4:3)
Chap. XIV. — The Lord Hath Given Us the Testament Which Moses Received and Broke.
Yes [it is even so]; but let us inquire if the Lord has really given that testament which He swore to the fathers that He would give138 to the people. He did give it; but they were not worthy to receive it, on account of their sins. For the prophet declares, “And Moses was fasting forty days and forty nights on Mount Sinai, that he might receive the testament of the Lord for the people.” (Exo_24:18) And he received from the Lord (Exo_31:18) two tables, written in the spirit by the finger of the hand of the Lord. And Moses having received them, carried them down to give to the people. And the Lord said to Moses, “Moses, Moses, go down quickly; for thy people hath sinned, whom thou didst bring out of the land of Egypt.” (Exo_32:7; Deu_9:12) And Moses understood that they had again139 made molten images; and he threw the tables out of his hands, and the tables of the testament of the Lord were broken. Moses then received it, but they proved themselves unworthy. Learn now how we have received it. Moses, as a servant, (Comp. Heb_3:5) received it; but the Lord himself, having suffered in our behalf, hath given it to us, that we should be the people of inheritance. But He was manifested, in order that they might be perfected in their iniquities, and that we, being constituted heirs through Him,140 might receive the testament of the Lord Jesus, who was prepared for this end, that by His personal manifestation, redeeming our hearts (which were already wasted by death, and given over to the iniquity of error) from darkness, He might by His word enter into a covenant with us. For it is written how the Father, about to redeem141 us from darkness, commanded Him to prepare142 a holy people for Himself. The prophet therefore declares, “I, the Lord Thy God, have called Thee in righteousness, and will hold Thy hand, and will strengthen Thee; and I have given Thee for a covenant to the people, for a light to the nations, to open the eyes of the blind, and to bring forth from fetters them that are bound, and those that sit in darkness out of the prison-house.” (Isa_42:6, Isa_42:7) Ye perceive,143 then, whence we have been redeemed. And again, the prophet says, “Behold, I have appointed Thee as a light to the nations, that Thou mightest be for salvation even to the ends of the earth, saith the Lord God that redeemeth thee.”144 And again, the prophet saith, “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me; because He hath anointed me to preach the Gospel to the humble: He hath sent me to heal the broken-hearted, to proclaim deliverance to the captives, and recovery of sight to the blind; to announce the acceptable year of the Lord, and the day of recompense; to comfort all that mourn.” (Isa_61:1, Isa_61:2)
Chap. XV. — The False and the True Sabbath.
Further,145 also, it is written concerning the Sabbath in the Decalogue which [the Lord] spoke, face to face, to Moses on Mount Sinai, “And sanctify ye the Sabbath of the Lord with clean hands and a pure heart.” (Exo_20:8; Deu_5:12) And He says in another place, “If my sons keep the Sabbath, then will I cause my mercy to rest upon them.” (Jer_17:24, Jer_17:25) The Sabbath is mentioned at the beginning of the creation [thus]: “And God made in six days the works of His hands, and made an end on the seventh day, and rested on it, and sanctified it.”146 Attend, my children, to the meaning of this expression, “He finished in six days.” This implieth that the Lord will finish all things in six thousand years, for a day is147 with Him a thousand years. And He Himself testifieth,148 saying, “Behold, to-day149 will be as a thousand years.” (Psa_90:4; 2Pe_3:8) Therefore, my children, in six days, that is, in six thousand years, all things will be finished. “And He rested on the seventh day.” This meaneth: when His Son, coming [again], shall destroy the time of the wicked man,150 and judge the ungodly, and change the sun, and the moon,151 and the stars, then shall He truly rest on the seventh day. Moreover, He says, “Thou shalt sanctify it with pure hands and a pure heart.” If, therefore, any one can now sanctify 147 the day which God hath sanctified, except he is pure in heart in all things,152 we are deceived.153 Behold, therefore:154 certainly then one properly resting sanctifies it, when we ourselves, having received the promise, wickedness no longer existing, and all things having been made new by the Lord, shall be able to work righteousness.155 Then we shall be able to sanctify it, having been first sanctified ourselves.156 Further, He says to them, “Your new moons and your Sabbath I cannot endure.” (Isa_1:13) Ye perceive how He speaks: Your present Sabbaths are not acceptable to Me, but that is which I have made, [namely this,] when, giving rest to all things, I shall make a beginning of the eighth day, that is, a beginning of another world. Wherefore, also, we keep the eighth day with joyfulness, the day also on which Jesus rose again from the dead.157 And158 when He had manifested Himself, He ascended into the heavens.
Chap. XVI. — The Spiritual Temple of God.
Moreover, I will also tell you concerning the temple, how the wretched [Jews], wandering in error, trusted not in God Himself, but in the temple, as being the house of God. For almost after the manner of the Gentiles they worshipped Him in the temple.159 But learn how the Lord speaks, when abolishing it: “Who hath meted out heaven with a span, and the earth with his palm? Have not I?” (Isa_40:12) “Thus saith the Lord, Heaven is My throne, and the earth My footstool: what kind of house will ye build to Me, or what is the place of My rest?” (Isa_66:1) Ye perceive that their hope is vain. Moreover, He again says, “Behold, they who have cast down this temple, even they shall build it up again.” (Comp. Isa_49:17, LXX.) It has so happened.160 For through their going to war, it was destroyed by their enemies; and now: they, as the servants of their enemies, shall rebuild it. Again, it was revealed that the city and the temple and the people of Israel were to be given up. For the Scripture saith, “And it shall come to pass in the last days, that the Lord will deliver up the sheep of His pasture, and their sheep-fold and tower, to destruction.”161 And it so happened as the Lord had spoken. Let us inquire, then, if there still is a temple of God. There is — where He himself declared He would make and finish it. For it is written, “And it shall come to pass, when the week is completed, the temple of God shall be built in glory in the name of the Lord.” (Dan_9:24-27; Hag_2:10) I find, therefore, that a temple does exist. Learn, then, how it shall be built in the name of the Lord. Before we believed in God, the habitation of our heart was corrupt and weak, as being indeed like a temple made with hands. For it was full of idolatry, and was a habitation of demons, through our doing such things as were opposed to [the will of] God. But it shall be built, observe ye, in the name of the Lord, in order that the temple of the Lord may be built in glory. How? Learn [as follows]. Having received the forgiveness of sins, and placed our trust in the name of the Lord, we have become new creatures, formed again from the beginning. Wherefore in our habitation God truly dwells in us. How? His word of faith; His calling162 of promise; the wisdom of the statutes; the commands of the doctrine; He himself prophesying in us; He himself dwelling in us; opening to us who were enslaved by death the doors of the temple, that is, the mouth; and by giving us repentance introduced us into the incorruptible temple.163 He then, who wishes to be saved, looks not to man,164 but to Him who dwelleth in him, and speaketh in him, amazed at never having either heard him utter such words with his mouth, nor himself having ever desired to hear them. 165This is the spiritual temple built for the Lord.
Chap. XVII. — Conclusion of the First Part of the Epistle.
As far as was possible, and could be done with perspicuity, I cherish the hope that, according to my desire, I have omitted none166 of those things at present [demanding consideration], which bear upon your salvation. For if I should write to you about things future,167 ye would not understand, because such knowledge is hid in parables. These things then are so. 148
Chap. XVIII. — Second Part of the Epistle. The Two Ways.
But let us now pass to another sort of knowledge and doctrine. There are two ways of doctrine and authority, the one of light, and the other of darkness. But there is a great difference between these two ways. For over one are stationed the light-bringing angels of God, but over the other the angels (Comp. 2Co_12:7) of Satan. And He indeed (i.e., God) is Lord for ever and ever, but he (i.e., Satan) is prince of the time168 of iniquity.
Chap. XIX. — The Way of Light.
The way of light, then, is as follows. If any one desires to travel to the appointed place, he must be zealous in his works. The knowledge, therefore, which is given to us for the purpose of walking in this way, is the following. Thou shalt love Him that created thee:169 thou shalt glorify Him that redeemed thee from death. Thou shalt be simple in heart, and rich in spirit. Thou shalt not join thyself to those who walk in the way of death. Thou shalt hate doing what is unpleasing to God: thou shalt hate all hypocrisy. Thou shalt not forsake the commandments of the Lord. Thou shalt not exalt thyself, but shalt be of a lowly mind.170 Thou shalt not take glory to thyself. Thou shalt not take evil counsel against thy neighbour. Thou shalt not allow over-boldness to enter into thy soul.171 Thou shalt not commit fornication: thou shalt not commit adultery: thou shalt not be a corrupter of youth. Thou shalt not let the word of God issue from thy lips with any kind of impurity.172 Thou shalt not accept persons when thou reprovest any one for transgression. Thou shalt be meek: thou shalt be peaceable. Thou shalt tremble at the words which thou hearest.173 Thou shalt not be mindful of evil against thy brother. Thou shalt not be of doubtful mind (Comp. Jam_1:8) as to whether a thing shall be or not. Thou shalt not take the name174 of the Lord in vain. Thou shalt love thy neighbour more than thine own soul.175 Thou shalt not slay the child by procuring abortion; nor, again, shalt thou destroy it after it is born. Thou shalt not withdraw thy hand from thy son, or from thy daughter, but from their infancy thou shalt teach them the fear of the Lord.176 Thou shalt not covet what is thy neighbour’s, nor shalt thou be avaricious. Thou shalt not be joined in soul with the haughty, but thou shalt be reckoned With the righteous and lowly. Receive thou as good things the trials177 which come upon thee.178 Thou shalt not be of double mind or of double tongue,179 for a double tongue is a snare of death. Thou shalt be subject180 to the Lord, and to [other] masters as the image of God, with modesty and fear. Thou shalt not issue orders with bitterness to thy maidservant or thy man-servant, who trust in the same [God181], lest thou shouldst not182 reverence that God who is above both; for He came to call men not according to their outward appearance, (Comp. Eph_6:9) but according as the Spirit had prepared them. (Comp. Rom_8:29, Rom_8:30) Thou shalt communicate in all things with thy neighbour; thou shalt not call183 things thine own; for if ye are partakers in common of things which are incorruptible,184 how much more [should you be] of those things which are corruptible!185 Thou shalt not be hasty with thy tongue, for the mouth is a snare of death. As far as possible, thou shalt be pure in thy soul. Do not be ready to stretch forth thy hands to take, whilst thou contractest them to give. Thou shalt love, as the apple of thine eye, every one that speaketh to thee the word of the Lord. Thou shalt remember the day of judgment, night and day. Thou shalt seek out every day the faces of the saints,186 either by word examining them, and going to exhort them, and meditating how to save a soul by the word,187 or by thy hands thou shalt labour for the redemption of thy sins. Thou shalt not hesitate to give, nor murmur when thou givest. “Give to every one that asketh thee,”188 and thou shalt know who is the good Recompenser of the reward. Thou shalt preserve what thou hast received [in charge], neither adding to it nor taking from it. To the last thou shalt hate the wicked189 [one].190 Thou shalt judge righteously. Thou shalt not make a schism, but thou shalt pacify those that contend by bringing them together. Thou shalt 149 confess thy sins. Thou shalt not go to prayer with an evil conscience. This is the way of light.191
Chap. XX. — The Way of Darkness.
But the way of darkness192 is crooked, and full of cursing; for it is the way of eternal193 death with punishment, in which way are the things that destroy the soul, viz., idolatry, over-confidence, the arrogance of power, hypocrisy, double-heartedness, adultery, murder, rapine, haughtiness, transgression,194 deceit, malice, self-sufficiency, poisoning, magic, avarice,195 want of the fear of God. [In this way, too,] are those who persecute the good, those who hate truth, those who love falsehood, those who know not the reward of righteousness, those who cleave not to that which is good, those who attend not with just judgment to the widow and orphan, those who watch not to the fear of God, [but incline] to wickedness, from whom meekness and patience are far off; persons who love vanity, follow after a reward, pity not the needy, labour not in aid of him who is overcome with toil; who are prone to evil-speaking, who know not Him that made them, who are murderers of children, destroyers of the workmanship of God; who turn away him that is in want, who oppress the afflicted, who are advocates of the rich, who are unjust judges of the poor, and who are in every respect transgressors.
Chap. XXI. — Conclusion.
It is well, therefore,196 that he who has learned the judgments of the Lord, as many as have been written, should walk in them. For he who keepeth these shall be glorified in the kingdom of God; but he who chooseth other things197 shall be destroyed with his works. On this account there will be a resurrection,198 on this account a retribution. I beseech you who are superiors, if you will receive any counsel of my good-will, have among yourselves those to whom you may show kindness: do not forsake them. For the day is at hand on which all things shall perish with the evil [one]. The Lord is near, and His reward. Again, and yet again, I beseech you: be good lawgivers199 to one another; continue faithful counsellors of one another; take away from among you all hypocrisy. And may God, who ruleth over all the world, give to you wisdom, intelligence, understanding, knowledge of His judgments,200 with patience. And be ye201 taught of God, inquiring diligently what the Lord asks from you; and do it that ye may be safe in the day of judgment.202 And if you have any remembrance of what is good, be mindful of me, meditating on these things, in order that both my desire and watchfulness may result in some good. I beseech you, entreating this as a favour. While yet you are in this fair vessel,203 do not fail in any one of those things,204 but unceasingly seek after them, and fulfil every commandment; for these things are worthy.205 Wherefore I have been the more earnest to write to you, as my ability served,206 that I might cheer you. Farewell, ye children of love and peace. The Lord of glory and of all grace be with your spirit. Amen.207
117 Cod. Sin. refers this to God, and not to the prophet.
118 From some unknown apocryphal book. Hilgenfeld compares Hab_2:11.
119 Cod. Sin. reads, “He speaks to Moses.”
120 Cod. Sin. omits “and.”
121 Cod. Sin. reads πυγμῆς, which must here be translated “heap” or “mass.” According to Hilgenfeld, however, πυγμή is here equivalent to πυγμαχία, “a fight.” The meaning would then be, that “Moses piled weapon upon weapon in the midst of the battle,” instead of “hill” (πήγης), as above.
122 Thus standing in the form of a cross.
123 Or, as some read, “in the cross.”
124 Cod. Sin. has, “and He shall make him alive.”
125 Literally, “the sign.”
126 Deu_27:15. Cod. Sin. reads, “molten or graven.”
127 Instead of ἐν δοκῷ, “on a beam,” Cod. Sin. with other mss. has ἐνδόξως, “manifestly,” which is adopted by Hilgenfeld.
128 Cod. Sin. simply reads, “offer supplication.”
129 Cod. Sin. has the imperative, “Put on him;” but it is connected as above.
130 Cod. Sin. closes the sentence with Jesus, and inserts, “Moses said therefore to Jesus.”
131 That is, merely human: a reference is supposed to the Ebionites.
132 Cod. Sin. corrects “to Cyrus,” as LXX.
133 Cod. Sin. has, “he has taken hold.”
134 That is, “Christians.”
135 Cod. Sin. reads each time “Ephraim,” by a manifest mistake, instead of Manasseh.
136 Or, “of whom he willed.”
137 Cod. Sin. has, “when alone believing,” and is followed by Hilgenfeld to this effect: “What, then, says He to Abraham, when, alone believing, he was placed in righteousness? Behold,” etc.
138 Cod. Sin. absurdly repeats “to give.”
139 Cod. Sin. reads, “for themselves.”
140 Cod. Sin. and other mss. read, “through Him who inherited.”
141 Cod. Sin. refers this to Christ.
142 Cod. Sin. reads, “be prepared.” Hilgenfeld follows Cod. Sin. so far, and reads, “For it is written how the Father commanded Him who was to redeem us from darkness (αὐτῷ — λυτρωσάμενος) to prepare a holy people for Himself.”
143 Cod. Sin. has, “we know.”
144 Isa_49:6. The text of Cod. Sin., and of the other mss., is here in great confusion: we have followed that given by Hefele.
145 Cod. Sin. reads “because,” but this is corrected to “moreover.”
146 Gen_2:2. The Hebrew text is here followed, the Septuagint reading “sixth” instead of “seventh.”
147 Cod. Sin. reads “signifies.”
148 Cod. Sin. adds, “to me.”
149 Cod. Sin. reads, “The day of the Lord shall be as a thousand years.”
150 Cod. Sin. seems properly to omit “of the wicked man.”
151 Cod. Sin. places stars before moon.
152 Cod. Sin. reads “again,” but is corrected as above.
153 The meaning is, “If the Sabbaths of the Jews were the true Sabbath, we should have been deceived by God, who demands pure hands and a pure heart.” — Hefele.
154 Cod. Sin. has, “But if not.” Hilgenfeld’s text of this confused passage reads as follows: “Who then can sanctify the day which God has sanctified, except the man who is of a pure heart? We are deceived (or mistaken) in all things. Behold, therefore,” etc.
155 Cod. Sin. reads, “resting aright, we shall sanctify it, having been justified, and received the promise, iniquity no longer existing, but all things having been made new by the Lord.”
156 Cod. Sin. reads, “Shall we not then?”
157 “Barnabas here bears testimony to the observance of the Lord’s Day in early times.” — Hefele.
158 We here follow the punctuation of Dressel: Hefele places only a comma between the clauses, and inclines to think that the writer implies that the ascension of Christ took place on the first day of the week.
159 That is, “they worshipped the temple instead of Him.”
160 Cod. Sin. omits this.
161 Comp. Isa_5:1-30, Jer_25:1-38; but the words do not occur in Scripture.
162 Cod. Sin. reads, “the calling.”
163 Cod. Sin. gives the clauses of this sentence separately, each occupying a line.
164 That is, the man who is engaged in preaching the Gospel.
165 Such is the punctuation adopted by Hefele, Dressel, and Hilgenfeld.
166 Cod. Sin. reads, “my soul hopes that it has not omitted anything.”
167 Cod. Sin., “about things present or future.” Hilgenfeld’s text of this passage is as follows: “My mind and soul hopes that, according to my desire, I have omitted none of the things that pertain to salvation. For if I should write to you about things present or future,” etc. Hefele gives the text as above, and understands the meaning to be, “points bearing on the present argument.
168 Cod. Sin. reads, “of the present time of iniquity.”
169 Cod. Sin. inserts, “Thou shalt fear Him that formed thee.”
170 Cod. Sin. adds, “in all things.”
171 Literally, “shalt not give insolence to thy soul.”
172 “That is, while proclaiming the Gospel, thou shalt not in any way be of corrupt morals.” — Hefele.
173 Isa_66:2. All the preceding clauses are given in Cod. Sin. in distinct lines.
174 Cod. Sin. has “thy name,” but this is corrected as above.
175 Cod. Sin. corrects to, “as thine own soul.”
176 Cod. Sin. has, “of God.”
177 “Difficulties,” or “troubles.”
178 Cod. Sin. adds, “knowing that without God nothing happens.”
179 Cod. Sin. has, “talkative,” and omits the following clause.
180 Cod. Sin. has, “Thou shalt be subject (ὑποταγήσῃ — untouched by the corrector) to masters as a type of God.”