Stephen bar Sudaili, the Syrian mystic, and the book of Hierotheos

Frothingham F. Stephen bar Sudaili, the Syrian mystic, and the book of Hierotheos. -1886

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31 tics from Christian instruction and from being converted to
God. It makes of no effect holy Baptism, and the giving of
the Divine mysteries, and labors and struggles for righteous¬
ness. For if, according to his impious words, not only
will there be no Judgment, but all will receive the same
measure of retribution, then the same honor will be accorded
to the apostle Peter and to Simon Magus, to the preach¬
er Paul and to the traitor Judas, to the Apostles and Evan¬
gelists1). And, what is especially full of an impiety akin to
insanity is, that he says, that everything is of one nature
with God. What has just been detailed is most impor¬
tant and most completely reprehensible; for then the
Apostles have in vain worked, and converted all nations
from Heathenism to Christianity, if even without instruction
in the faith and baptism they are to be equals of the Apos¬
tles, and are to become consubstantial with God, the Lord
of the Universe. Hence there is no difference between those
who died for Christ and those who killed them, for they
who were confessors of the faith will receive nothing more,
and they who killed them nothing less, because all together,
as he says, will arrive at one perfection; and as the mem¬
bers of the body are of the same nature as each other and
as the body itself, so, as he means and even says, are we
in God and with Him in unity the one with the other.
These things may be known, he says, by the mystery of
the first day of the week, when, as he says, God will be
all in all: one nature, one substance, one divinity. If then
it is possible that men should become consubstantial with
the Divinity, then the dispensation of the flesh and the In¬
carnation were superfluous. From misunderstanding, therefore, 1) The antithesis which must have followed seems to have been
omitted in our copy.