Writings of Augustine. On Baptism, Against the Donatists
3. But if they say that the Catholic Church existed then, because
there were a few, or, if they prefer it, even a considerable number,
who denied the validity of any baptism conferred in an heretical body,
and baptized all who came from thence, what then? Did the Church not
exist at all before Agrippinus, with whom that new kind of system
began, at variance with all previous custom? Or how, again after the
time of Agrippinus, when, unless there had been a return to the
primitive custom, there would have been no need for Cyprian to set on
foot another Council? Was there no Church then, because such a custom
as this prevailed everywhere, that the baptism of Christ should be
considered nothing but the baptism of Christ, even though it were
proved to have been conferred in a body of heretics or schismatics?
But if the Church existed even then, and had not perished through a
breach of its continuity, but was, on the contrary, holding its
ground, and receiving increase in every nation, surely it is the
safest plan to abide by this same custom, which then embraced good and
bad alike in unity. But if there was then no Church in existence,
because sacrilegious heretics were received without baptism, and this
prevailed by universal custom, whence has Donatus made his
appearance? From what land did he spring? or from what sea did he
emerge? or from what sky did he fall? And so we, as I had begun to
say, are safe in the communion of that Church, throughout the whole
extent of which the custom now prevails, which prevailed in like
manner through its whole extent before the time of Agrippinus, and in
the interval between Agrippinus and Cyprian, and whose unity neither
Agrippinus nor Cyprian ever deserted, nor those who agreed with them,
although they entertained different views from the rest of their
brethren--all of them remaining in the same communion of unity with
the very men from whom they differed in opinion. But let the
Donatists themselves consider what their true position is, if they
neither can say whence they derived their origin, if the Church had
already been destroyed by the plague-spot of communion with heretics
and schismatics received into her bosom without baptism; nor again
agree with Cyprian himself, for he declared that he remained in
communion with those who received heretics and schismatics, and so
also with those who were received as well: while they have separated
themselves from the communion of the whole world, on account of the
charge of having delivered up the sacred books, which they brought
against the men whom they maligned in Africa, but failed to convict
when brought to trial beyond the sea; although, even had the crimes
which they alleged been true, they were much less heinous than the
sins of heresy and schism; and yet these could not defile Cyprian in
the persons of those who came from them without baptism, as he
conceived, and were admitted without baptism into the Catholic
communion. Nor, in the very point in which they say that they imitate
Cyprian, can they find any answer to make about acknowledging the
baptism of the followers of Maximianus, together with those whom,
though they belonged to the party that they had first condemned in
their own plenary Council, and then gone on to prosecute even at the
tribunal of the secular power, they yet received back into their
communion, in the episcopate of the very same bishop under whom they
had been condemned. Wherefore, if the communion of wicked men
destroyed the Church in the time of Cyprian, they have no source from
which they can derive their own communion; and if the Church was not
destroyed, they have no excuse for their separation from it.
Moreover, they are neither following the example of Cyprian, since
they have burst the bond of unity, nor abiding by their own Council,
since they have recognized the baptism of the followers of Maximianus.
The Seven Books of Augustin, Bishop of Hippo,
On Baptism, Against the Donatists
[de Baptisimo contra Donatistas.]
Circa A.D. 400.
Translated by the Rev. J. R. King, M.A.,
Vicar of St. Peter's in the East, Oxford; and late Fellow and Tutor of
Merton College, Oxford
Published in 1886 by Philip Schaff,
New York: Christian Literature Publishing Co.
Augustin undertakes the refutation of the arguments which might be
derived from the epistle of Cyprian to Jubaianus, to give color to the
view that the baptism of Christ could not be conferred by heretics.
Chapter 1.--1. I think that it may now be considered clear to every
one, that the authority of the blessed Cyprian for the maintenance of
the bond of peace, and the avoiding of any violation of that most
wholesome charity which preserves unity in the Church, may be urged on
our side rather than on the side of the Donatists. For if they have
chosen to act upon his example in rebaptizing Catholics, because he
thought that heretics ought to be baptized on joining the Catholic
Church, shall not we rather follow his example, whereby he laid down a
manifest rule that one ought in no wise, by the establishment of a
separate communion, to secede from the Catholic communion, that is,
from the body of Christians dispersed throughout the world, even on
the admission of evil and sacrilegious men, since he was unwilling
even to remove from the right of communion those whom he considered to
have received sacrilegious men without baptism into the Catholic
communion, saying, "Judging no one, nor depriving any of the right of
communion if he differ from us?" 
 See above, II. ii. 3.
Chapter 2.--2. Nevertheless, I see what may still be required of me,
viz., that I should answer those plausible arguments, by which, in
even earlier times, Agrippinus, or Cyprian himself, or those in Africa
who agreed with them, or any others in far distant lands beyond the
sea, were moved, not indeed by the authority of any plenary or even
regionary Council, but by a mere epistolary correspondence, to think
that they ought to adopt a custom which had no sanction from the
ancient custom of the Church, and which was expressly forbidden by the
most unanimous resolution of the Catholic world in order that an error
which had begun to creep into the minds of some men, through
discussions of this kind, might be cured by the more powerful truth
and universal healing power of unity coming on the side of safety.
And so they may see with what security I approach this discourse. If
I am unable to gain my point, and show how those arguments may be
refuted which they bring forward from the Council and the epistles of
Cyprian, to the effect that Christ's baptism may not be given by the
hands of heretics, I shall still remain safely in the Church, in whose
communion Cyprian himself remained with those who differed from him.
Chapter 3.--4. Let us therefore, seeing that we adhere to the example
of Cyprian, go on now to consider Cyprian's Council. What says
Cyprian? "Ye have heard," he says, "most beloved colleagues, what
Jubaianus our fellow-bishop has written to me, consulting my moderate
ability concerning the unlawful and profane baptism of heretics, and
what answer I gave him,--giving a judgment which we have once and
again and often given, that heretics coming to the Church ought to be
baptized and sanctified with the baptism of the Church. Another
letter of Jubaianus has likewise been read to you, in which, agreeably
to his sincere and religious devotion, in answer to our epistle, he
not only expressed his assent, but returned thanks also, acknowledging
that he had received instruction." In these words of the
blessed Cyprian, we find that he had been consulted by Jubaianus, and
what answer he had given to his questions, and how Jubaianus
acknowledged with gratitude that he had received instruction. Ought
we then to be thought unreasonably persistent if we desire to consider
this same epistle by which Jubaianus was convinced? For till such
time as we are also convinced (if there are any arguments of truth
whereby this can be done), Cyprian himself has established our
security by the right of Catholic communion.
5. For he goes on to say: "It remains that we severally declare our
opinion on this same subject, judging no one, nor depriving any one of
the right of communion if he differ from us." He allows me,
therefore, without losing the right of communion, not only to continue
inquiring into the truth, but even to hold opinions differing from his
own. "For no one of us," he says, "setteth himself up as a bishop of
bishops, or by tyrannical terror forces his colleagues to a necessity
of obeying." What could be more kind? what more humble? Surely there
is here no authority restraining us from inquiry into what is truth.
"Inasmuch as every bishop," he says, "in the free use of his liberty
and power, has the right of forming his own judgment, and can no more
be judged by another than he can himself judge another,"--that is, I
suppose, in those questions which have not yet been brought to perfect
clearness of solution; for he knew what a deep question about the
sacrament was then occupying the whole Church with every kind of
disputation, and gave free liberty of inquiry to every man, that the
truth might be made known by investigation. For he was surely not
uttering what was false, and trying to catch his simpler colleagues in
their speech, so that, when they should have betrayed that they held
opinions at variance with his, he might then propose, in violation of
his promise, that they should be excommunicated. Far be it from a
soul so holy to entertain such accursed treachery; indeed, they who
hold such a view about such a man, thinking that it conduces to his
praise, do but show that it would be in accordance with their own
nature. I for my part will in no wise believe that Cyprian, a
Catholic bishop, a Catholic martyr, whose greatness only made him
proportionately humble in all things, so as to find favor before the
Lord,  should ever, especially in the sacred Council of his
colleagues, have uttered with his mouth what was not echoed in his
heart, especially as he further adds, "But we must all await the
judgment of our Lord Jesus Christ, who alone has the power both of
setting us in the government of His Church, and of judging of our acts
therein." When, then, he called to their remembrance so
solemn a judgment, hoping to hear the truth from his colleagues, would
he first set them the example of lying? May God avert such madness
from every Christian man, and how much more from Cyprian! We have
therefore the free liberty of inquiry granted to us by the most
moderate and most truthful speech of Cyprian.
 See above, II. ii. 3.
 See above, II. ii. 3.
 Ecclus. iii. 18.
 See above, II. ii. 3.
Chapter 4.--6. Next his colleagues proceed to deliver their several
opinions. But first they listened to the letter written to Jubaianus;
for it was read, as was mentioned in the preamble. Let it therefore
be read among ourselves also, that we too, with the help of God, may
discover from it what we ought to think. "What!" I think I hear some
one saying, "do you proceed to tell us what Cyprian wrote to
Jubaianus?" I have read the letter, I confess, and should certainly
have been a convert to his views, had I not been induced to consider
the matter more carefully by the vast weight of authority, originating
in those whom the Church, distributed throughout the world amid so
many nations, of Latins, Greeks, barbarians, not to mention the Jewish
race itself, has been able to produce,--that same Church which gave
birth to Cyprian himself,--men whom I could in no wise bring myself to
think had been unwilling without reason to hold this view,--not
because it was impossible that in so difficult a question the opinion
of one or of a few might not have been more near the truth than that
of more, but because one must not lightly, without full consideration
and investigation of the matter to the best of his abilities, decide
in favor of a single individual, or even of a few, against the
decision of so very many men of the same religion and communion, all
endowed with great talent and abundant learning. And so how much was
suggested to me on more diligent inquiry, even by the letter of
Cyprian himself, in favor of the view which is now held by the
Catholic Church, that the baptism of Christ is to be recognized and
approved, not by the standard of their merits by whom it is
administered, but by His alone of whom it is said, "The same is He
which baptizeth,"  will be shown naturally in the course of our
argument. Let us therefore suppose that the letter which was written
by Cyprian to Jubaianus has been read among us, as it was read in the
Council. And I would have every one read it who means to read
what I am going to say, lest he might possibly think that I have
suppressed some things of consequence. For it would take too much
time, and be irrelevant to the elucidation of the matter in hand, were
we at this moment to quote all the words of this epistle.
 John i. 33.
 The Council of Carthage.
Chapter 5.--7. But if any one should ask what I hold in the meantime,
while discussing this question, I answer that, in the first place, the
letter of Cyprian suggested to me what I should hold till I should see
clearly the nature of the question which next begins to be discussed.
For Cyprian himself says: "But some will say, `What then will become
of those who in times past, coming to the Church from heresy, were
admitted without baptism?'" Whether they were really without
baptism, or whether they were admitted because those who admitted them
conceived that they had partaken of baptism, is a matter for our
future consideration. At any rate, Cyprian himself shows plainly
enough what was the ordinary custom of the Church, when he says that
in past time those who came to the Church from heresy were admitted
8. For in the Council itself Castus of Sicca says: "He who,
despising truth, presumes to follow custom, is either envious or
evil-disposed towards the brethren to whom the truth is revealed, or
is ungrateful towards God, by whose inspiration His Church is
instructed." Whether the truth had been revealed, we shall
investigate hereafter; at any rate, he acknowledges that the custom of
the Church was different.
 Epist. lxxiii. 23, to Jubianus.
 Seventh Conc. Carth. under Cyprian, the third which dealt with
baptism, A.D. 256, sec. 28. These opinions are quoted again in Books
VI. and VII.
Chapter 6.--9. Libosus also of Vaga says: "The Lord says in the
gospel, `I am the Truth.' He does not say, `I am custom.'
Therefore, when the truth is made manifest, custom must give way to
truth." Clearly, no one could doubt that custom must give way
to truth where it is made manifest. But we shall see presently about
the manifestation of the truth. Meanwhile he also makes it clear that
custom was on the other side.
 John xiv. 6.
 Conc. Carth. sec. 30.
Chapter 7.--10. Zosimus also of Tharassa said: "When a revelation of
the truth has been made, error must give way to truth; for even Peter,
who at the first circumcised, afterwards gave way to Paul when he
declared the truth." He indeed chose to say error, not
custom; but in saying "for even Peter, who at the first circumcised,
afterwards gave way to Paul when he declared the truth," he shows
plainly enough that there was a custom also on the subject of baptism
at variance with his views. At the same time, also, he warns us that
it was not impossible that Cyprian might have held an opinion about
baptism at variance with that required by the truth, as held by the
Church both before and after him, if even Peter could hold a view at
variance with the truth as taught us by the Apostle Paul. 
 Ib. sec. 56.
 Gal. ii. 11-14.
Chapter 8.--11. Likewise Felix of Buslacene said: "In admitting
heretics without the baptism of the Church, let no one prefer custom
to reason and truth; because reason and truth always prevail to the
exclusion of custom." Nothing could be better, if it be
reason, and if it be truth; but this we shall see presently.
Meanwhile, it is clear from the words of this man also that the custom
was the other way.
 Conc. Carth. sec. 63.
Chapter 9.--12. Likewise Honoratus of Tucca  said: "Since
Christ is the Truth, we ought to follow truth rather than custom."
By all these declarations it is proved that we are not
excluded from the communion of the Church, till it shall have been
clearly shown what is the nature of the truth, which they say must be
preferred to our custom. But if the truth has made it clear that the
very regulation ought to be maintained which the said custom had
prescribed, then it is evident both that this custom was not
established or confirmed in vain, and also that, in consequence of the
discussions in question, the most wholesome observance of so great a
sacrament, which could never, indeed, have been changed in the
Catholic Church, was even more watchfully guarded with the most
scrupulous caution, when it had received the further corroboration of
 Conc. Carth. sec. 77.
Chapter 10.--13. Therefore Cyprian writes to Jubaianus as follows,
"concerning the baptism of heretics, who, being placed without, and
set down out of the Church," seem to him to "claim to themselves a
matter over which they have neither right nor power. Which we," he
says, "cannot account valid or lawful, since it is clear that among
them it is unlawful." Neither, indeed, do we deny that a man
who is baptized among heretics, or in any schism outside the Church,
derives no profit from it so far as he is partner in the perverseness
of the heretics and schismatics; nor do we hold that those who
baptize, although they confer the real true sacrament of baptism, are
yet acting rightly, in gathering adherents outside the Church, and
entertaining opinions contrary to the Church. But it is one thing to
be without a sacrament, another thing to be in possession of it
wrongly, and to usurp it unlawfully. Therefore they do not cease to
be sacraments of Christ and the Church, merely because they are
unlawfully used, not only by heretics, but by all kinds of wicked and
impious persons. These, indeed, ought to be corrected and punished,
but the sacraments should be acknowledged and revered.
14. Cyprian, indeed, says that on this subject not one, but two or
more Councils were held; always, however, in Africa. For indeed in
one he mentions that seventy-one bishops had been assembled, 
--to all whose authority we do not hesitate, with all due deference to
Cyprian, to prefer the authority, supported by many more bishops, of
the whole Church spread throughout the whole world, of which Cyprian
himself rejoiced that he was an inseparable member.
15. Nor is the water "profane and adulterous"  over which the
name of God is invoked, even though it be invoked by profane and
adulterous persons; because neither the creature itself of water, nor
the name invoked, is adulterous. But the baptism of Christ,
consecrated by the words of the gospel, is necessarily holy, however
polluted and unclean its ministers may be; because its inherent
sanctity cannot be polluted, and the divine excellence abides in its
sacrament, whether to the salvation of those who use it aright, or to
the destruction of those who use it wrong. Would you indeed maintain
that, while the light of the sun or of a candle, diffused through
unclean places, contracts no foulness in itself therefrom, yet the
baptism of Christ can be defiled by the sins of any man, whatsoever he
may be? For if we turn our thoughts to the visible materials
themselves, which are to us the medium of the sacraments, every one
must know that they admit of corruption. But if we think on that
which they convey to us, who can fail to see that it is incorruptible,
however much the men through whose ministry it is conveyed are either
being rewarded or punished for the character of their lives?
 Ctpr. Ep. lxxiii. 1.
 Ctpr. Ep. lxxiii. 1.
 Ctpr. Ep. lxxiii. 1.
Chapter 11.--16. But Cyprian was right in not being moved by what
Jubaianus wrote, that "the followers of Novatian  rebaptize
those who come to them from the Catholic Church." For, in the
first place, it does not follow that whatever heretics have done in a
perverse spirit of mimicry, Catholics are therefore to abstain from
doing, because the heretics do the same. And again, the reasons are
different for which heretics and the Catholic Church ought
respectively to abstain from rebaptizing. For it would not be right
for heretics to do so, even if it were fitting in the Catholic Church;
because their argument is, that among the Catholics is wanting that
which they themselves received whilst still within the pale, and took
away with them when they departed. Whereas the reason why the
Catholic Church should not administer again the baptism which was
given among heretics, is that it may not seem to decide that a power
which is Christ's alone belongs to its members, or to pronounce that
to be wanting in the heretics which they have received within her
pale, and certainly could not lose by straying outside. For thus much
Cyprian himself, with all the rest, established, that if any should
return from heresy to the Church, they should be received back, not by
baptism, but by the discipline of penitence; whence it is clear that
they cannot be held to lose by their secession what is not restored to
them when they return. Nor ought it for a moment to be said that, as
their heresy is their own, as their error is their own, as the
sacrilege of disunion is their own, so also the baptism is their own,
which is really Christ's. Accordingly, while the evils which are
their own are corrected when they return, so in that which is not
theirs His presence should be recognised, from whom it is.
 The Novatian bishop, Acesius, was invited by Constantine to
attend the Council of Nicaea. Soc., H.E.I. 10.
 Cypr. Ep. lxxiii. 2.
Chapter 12.--17. But the blessed Cyprian shows that it was no new or
sudden thing that he decided, because the practice had already begun
under Agrippinus. "Many years," he says, "and much time has passed
away since, under Agrippinus of honored memory, a large assembly of
bishops determined this point." Accordingly, under Agrippinus, at any
rate, the thing was new. But I cannot understand what Cyprian means
by saying, "And thenceforward to the present day, so many thousand
heretics in our provinces, having been converted to our Church, showed
no hesitation or dislike, but rather with full consent of reason and
will, have embraced the opportunity of the grace of the laver of life
and the baptism unto salvation,"  unless indeed he says,
"thenceforward to the present day," because from the time when they
were baptized in the Church, in accordance with the Council of
Agrippinus, no question of excommunication had arisen in the case of
any of the rebaptized. Yet if the custom of baptizing those who came
over from heretics remained in force from the time of Agrippinus to
that of Cyprian, why should new Councils have been held by Cyprian on
this point? Why does he say to this same Jubaianus that he is not
doing anything new or sudden, but only what had been established by
Agrippinus? For why should Jubaianus be disturbed by the question of
novelty, so as to require to be satisfied by the authority of
Agrippinus, if this was the continuous practice of the Church from
Agrippinus till Cyprian? Why, lastly, did so many of his colleagues
urge that reason and truth must be preferred to custom, instead of
saying that those who wished to act otherwise were acting contrary to
truth and custom alike?
 Cypr. Ep. lxxiii. 3.
Chapter 13.--18. But as regards the remission of sins, whether it is
granted through baptism at the hands of the heretics, I have already
expressed my opinion on this point in a former book;  but I will
shortly recapitulate it here. If remission of sins is there conferred
by the sacredness of baptism, the sins return again through obstinate
perseverance in heresy or schism; and therefore such men must needs
return to the peace of the Catholic Church, that they may cease to be
heretics and schismatics, and deserve that those sins which had
returned on them should be cleansed away by love working in the bond
of unity. But if, although among heretics and schismatics it be still
the same baptism of Christ, it yet cannot work remission of sins owing
to this same foulness of discord and wickedness of dissent, then the
same baptism begins to be of avail for the remission of sins when they
come to the peace of the Church,--[not]  that what has been
already truly remitted should not be retained; nor that heretical
baptism should be repudiated as belonging to a different religion, or
as being different from our own, so that a second baptism should be
administered; but that the very same baptism, which was working death
by reason of discord outside the Church, may work salvation by reason
of the peace within. It was, in fact, the same savor of which the
apostle says, "We are a sweet savor of Christ in every place;" and
yet, says he, "both in them that are saved and in them that perish.
To the one we are the savor of life unto life; and to the other the
savor of death unto death." And although he used these words
with reference to another subject, I have applied them to this, that
men may understand that what is good may not only work life to those
who use it aright, but also death to those who use it wrong.
 Above, Book I. c. xi. sqq.
 Non ut jam vere dimissa non retineantur. One of the negatives
here appears to be superfluous, and the former is omitted in
Amerbach's edition, and in many of the Mss., which continue the
sentence, "non ut ille baptismus," instead of "neque ut ille," etc.
If the latter negative were omitted, the sense would be improved, and
"neque" would appropriately remain.
 2 Cor. ii. 15, 16.
Chapter 14.--19. Nor is it material, when we are considering the
question of the genuineness and holiness of the sacrament, "what the
recipient of the sacrament believes, and with what faith he is
imbued." It is of the very highest consequence as regards the
entrance into salvation, but is wholly immaterial as regards the
question of the sacrament. For it is quite possible that a man may be
possessed of the genuine sacrament and a corrupted faith, as it is
possible that he may hold the words of the creed in their integrity,
and yet entertain an erroneous belief about the Trinity, or the
resurrection, or any other point. For it is no slight matter, even
within the Catholic Church itself, to hold a faith entirely consistent
with the truth about even God Himself, to say nothing of any of His
creatures. Is it then to be maintained, that if any one who has been
baptized within the Catholic Church itself should afterwards, in the
course of reading, or by listening to instruction, or by quiet
argument, find out, through God's own revelation, that he had before
believed otherwise than he ought, it is requisite that he should
therefore be baptized afresh? But what carnal and natural man is
there who does not stray through the vain conceits  of his own
heart, and picture God's nature to himself to be such as he has
imagined out of his carnal sense, and differ from the true conception
of God as far as vanity from truth? Most truly, indeed, speaks the
apostle, filled with the light of truth: "The natural man," says he,
"receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God." And yet
herein he was speaking of men whom he himself shows to have been
baptized. For he says to them, "Was Paul crucified for you? or were
ye baptized in the name of Paul?" These men had therefore the
sacrament of baptism; and yet, inasmuch as their wisdom was of the
flesh, what could they believe about God otherwise than according to
the perception of their flesh, according to which "the natural man
receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God?" To such he says: "I
could not speak unto you as unto spiritual, but as unto carnal, even
as unto babes in Christ. I have fed you with milk, and not with
meat: for hitherto ye were not able to bear it, neither yet now are
ye able. For ye are yet carnal." For such are carried about
with every wind of doctrine, of which kind he says, "That we be no
more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of
doctrine." It is then true that, if these men shall have
advanced even to the spiritual age of the inner man, and in the
integrity of understanding shall have learned how far different from
the requirements of the truth has been the belief which they have been
led by the fallacious character of their conceits to entertain of God,
they are therefore to be baptized again? For, on this principle, it
would be possible for a Catholic catechumen to light upon the writings
of some heretic, and, not having the knowledge requisite for
discerning truth from error, he might entertain some belief contrary
to the Catholic faith, yet not condemned by the words of the creed,
just as, under color of the same words, innumerable heretical errors
have sprung up. Supposing, then, that the catechumen was under the
impression that he was studying the work of some great and learned
Catholic, and was baptized with that belief in the Catholic Church,
and by subsequent research should discover what he ought to believe,
so that, embracing the Catholic faith, he should reject his former
error, ought he, on confessing this, to be baptized again? Or
supposing that, before learning and confessing this for himself, he
should be found to entertain such an opinion, and should be taught
what he ought to reject and what he should believe, and it were to
become clear that he had held this false belief when he was baptized,
ought he therefore to be baptized again? Why should we maintain the
contrary? Because the sanctity of the sacrament, consecrated in the
words of the gospel, remains upon him in its integrity, just as he
received it from the hands of the minister, although he, being firmly
rooted in the vanity of his carnal mind entertained a belief other
than was right at the time when he was baptized. Wherefore it is
manifest that it is possible that, with defective faith, the sacrament
of baptism may yet remain without defect in any man; and therefore all
that is said about the diversity of the several heretics is beside the
question. For in each person that is to be corrected which is found
to be amiss by the man who undertakes his correction. That is to be
made whole which is unsound; that is to be given which is wanting,
and, above all, the peace of Christian charity, without which the rest
is profitless. Yet, as the rest is there, we must not administer it
as though it were wanting, only take care that its possession be to
the profit, not the hurt of him who has it, through the very bond of
peace and excellence of charity.
 1 Cor ii. 14.
 1 Cor. i. 13.
 1 Cor iii. 1-3.
 Eph. iv. 14.
Chapter 15.--20. Accordingly, if Marcion consecrated the sacrament of
baptism with the words of the gospel, "In the name of the Father, and
of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost,"  the sacrament was complete,
although his faith expressed under the same words, seeing that he held
opinions not taught by the Catholic truth, was not complete, but
stained with the falsity of fables. For under these same
words, "In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy
Ghost," not Marcion only, or Valentinus, or Arius, or Eunomius, but
the carnal babes of the Church themselves (to whom the apostle said,
"I could not speak unto you as unto spiritual, but as unto carnal"),
if they could be individually asked for an accurate exposition of
their opinions, would probably show a diversity of opinions as
numerous as the persons who held them, "for the natural man receiveth
not the things of the Spirit of God." Can it, however, be said on
this account that they do not receive the complete sacrament? or that,
if they shall advance, and correct the vanity of their carnal
opinions, they must seek again what they had received? Each man
receives after the fashion of his own faith; yet how much does he
obtain under the guidance of that mercy of God, in the confident
assurance of which the same apostle says, "If in anything ye be
otherwise minded, God shall reveal even this unto you"? Yet
the snares of heretics and schismatics prove for this reason only too
pernicious to the carnally-minded, because their very progress is
intercepted when their vain opinions are confirmed in opposition to
the Catholic truth, and the perversity of their dissension is
strengthened against the Catholic peace. Yet if the sacraments are
the same, they are everywhere complete, even when they are wrongly
understood, and perverted to be instruments of discord, just as the
very writings of the gospel, if they are only the same, are everywhere
complete, even though quoted with a boundless variety of false
opinions. For as to what Jeremiah says:--"Why do those who grieve me
prevail against me? My wound is stubborn, whence shall I be healed?
In its origin it became unto me as lying water, having no certainty,"
 --if the term "water" were never used figuratively and in the
allegorical language of prophecy except to signify baptism, we should
have trouble in discovering what these words of Jeremiah meant; but as
it is, when "waters" are expressly used in the Apocalypse  to
signify "peoples," I do not see why, by "lying water having no
certainty," I should not understand, a "lying people, whom I cannot
 Matt. xxviii. 19.
 Cp. Concilium Arelatense, A.D. 314, can. 8. "De Afris, quod
propria lege utuntur ut rebaptizent; placuit ut si ad ecclesiam
aliquis de hæresi venerit, interrogent eum symbolum; et si perviderint
eum in Patre, et Filio, et Spiritu sancto esse baptizatum, manus ei
tantum imponatur, ut accipiat Spiritum sanctum. Quod si interrogatus
non responderit hanc Trinitatem, baptizetur."
 Phil. iii. 15.
 Jer. xv. 18, cp. LXX.
 Rev. xvii. 15.
Chapter 16.--21. But when it is said that "the Holy Spirit is given
by the imposition of hands in the Catholic Church only, I suppose that
our ancestors meant that we should understand thereby what the apostle
says, "Because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the
Holy Ghost which is given unto us." For this is that very
love which is wanting in all who are cut off from the communion of the
Catholic Church; and for lack of this, "though they speak with the
tongues of men and of angels, though they understand all mysteries and
all knowledge, and though they have the gift of prophecy, and all
faith, so that they could remove mountains, and though they bestow all
their goods to feed the poor, and though they give their bodies to be
burned, it profiteth them nothing." But those are wanting in
God's love who do not care for the unity of the Church; and
consequently we are right in understanding that the Holy Spirit may be
said not to be received except in the Catholic Church. For the Holy
Spirit is not only given by the laying on of hands amid the testimony
of temporal sensible miracles, as He was given in former days to be
the credentials of a rudimentary faith, and for the extension of the
first beginnings of the Church. For who expects in these days that
those on whom hands are laid that they may receive the Holy Spirit
should forthwith begin to speak with tongues? but it is understood
that invisibly and imperceptibly, on account of the bond of peace,
divine love is breathed into their hearts, so that they may be able to
say, "Because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy
Ghost which is given unto us." But there are many operations of the
Holy Spirit, which the same apostle commemorates in a certain passage
at such length as he thinks sufficient, and then concludes: "But all
these worketh that one and the selfsame Spirit, dividing to every man
severally as He will." Since, then, the sacrament is one
thing, which even Simon Magus could have;  and the operation of
the Spirit is another thing, which is even often found in wicked men,
as Saul had the gift of prophecy;  and that operation of the
same Spirit is a third thing, which only the good can have, as "the
end of the commandment is charity out of a pure heart, and of a good
conscience, and of faith unfeigned:" whatever, therefore, may
be received by heretics and schismatics, the charity which covereth
the multitude of sins is the especial gift of Catholic unity and
peace; nor is it found in all that are within that bond, since not all
that are within it are of it, as we shall see in the proper place. At
any rate, outside the bond that love cannot exist, without which all
the other requisites, even if they can be recognized and approved,
cannot profit or release from sin. But the laying on of hands in
reconciliation to the Church is not, like baptism, incapable of
repetition; for what is it more than a prayer offered over a man?
 Rom. v. 5.
 1 Cor. xiii. 1-3.
 1 Cor. xii. 11.
 Acts viii. 13.
 1 Sam. x. 6, 10.
 1 Tim. i. 5.
 He refers to laying on of hands such as he mentions below, Book
V. c. xxiii.: "If the laying on of hands were not applied to one
coming from heresy, he would be, as it were, judged to be wholly
Chapter 17.--22. "For as regards the fact that to preserve the figure
of unity the Lord gave the power to Peter that whatsoever he should
loose on earth should be loosed,"  it is clear that that unity
is also described as one dove without fault. Can it be said,
then, that to this same dove belong all those greedy ones, whose
existence in the same Catholic Church Cyprian himself so grievously
bewailed? For birds of prey, I believe, cannot be called doves, but
rather hawks. How then did they baptize those who used to plunder
estates by treacherous deceit, and increase their profits by compound
usury,  if baptism is only given by that indivisible and chaste
and perfect dove, that unity which can only be understood as existing
among the good? Is it possible that, by the prayers of the saints who
are spiritual within the Church, as though by the frequent
lamentations of the dove, a great sacrament is dispensed, with a
secret administration of the mercy of God, so that their sins also are
loosed who are baptized, not by the dove but by the hawk, if they come
to that sacrament in the peace of Catholic unity? But if this be so,
why should it not also be the case that, as each man comes from heresy
or schism to the Catholic peace, his sins should be loosed through
their prayers? But the integrity of the sacrament is everywhere
recognized, though it will not avail for the irrevocable remission of
sins outside the unity of the Church. Nor will the prayers of the
saints, or, in other words, the groanings of that one dove, be able to
help one who is set in heresy or schism; just as they are not able to
help one who is placed within the Church, if by a wicked life he
himself retain the debts of his sins against himself, and that though
he be baptized, not by this hawk, but by the pious ministry of the
 Matt. xvi. 19.
 Song of Sol. vi. 9.
 Cypr. de Lapsis c vi.
Chapter 18--23. "As my Father hath sent me," says our Lord, "even so
send I you. And what He had said this, He breathed on them, and saith
unto them, Receive ye the Holy Ghost. Whose soever sins ye remit,
they are remitted unto them; and whose soever sins ye retain, they are
retained." Therefore, if they represented the Church, and
this was said to them as to the Church herself, it follows that the
peace of the Church looses sins, and estrangement from the Church
retains them, not according to the will of men, but according to the
will of God and the prayers of the saints who are spiritual, who
"judge all things, but themselves are judged of no man." For
the rock retains, the rock remits; the dove retains, the dove remits;
unity retains, unity remits. But the peace of this unity exists only
in the good, in those who are either already spiritual, or are
advancing by the obedience of concord to spiritual things; it exists
not in the bad, whether they make disturbances abroad, or are endured
within the Church with lamentations, baptizing and being baptized.
But just as those who are tolerated with groanings within the Church,
although they do not belong to the same unity of the dove, and to that
"glorious Church, not having spot or wrinkle, or any such thing,"
 yet if they are corrected, and confess that they approached to
baptism most unworthily, are not baptized again, but begin to belong
to the dove, through whose groans those sins are remitted which were
retained in them who were estranged from her peace; so those also who
are more openly without the Church, if they have received the same
sacraments, are not freed from their sins on coming, after correction,
to the unity of the Church, by a repetition of baptism, but by the
same law of charity and bond of unity. For if "those only may baptize
who are set over the Church, and established by the law of the gospel
and ordination as appointed by the Lord," were they in any wise of
this kind who seized on estates by treacherous frauds, and increased
their gains by compound interest? I trow not, since those are
established by ordination as appointed of the Lord, of whom the
apostle, in giving them a standard, says, "Not greedy, not given to
filthy lucre." Yet men of this kind used to baptize in the
time of Cyprian himself; and he confesses with many lamentations that
they were his fellow-bishops, and endures them with the great reward
of tolerance. Yet did they not confer remission of sins, which is
granted through the prayers of the saints, that is, the groans of the
dove, whoever it be that baptizes, if those to whom it is given belong
to her peace. For the Lord would not say to robbers and usurers,
"Whose soever sins ye remit, they shall be remitted to him; and whose
soever sins ye retain, they shall be retained." "Outside the Church,
indeed, nothing can be either bound or loosed, since there there is no
one who can either bind or loose;" but he is loosed who has made peace
with the dove, and he is bound who is not at peace with the dove,
whether he is openly without, or appears to be within.
24. But we know that Dathan, Korah, and Abiram,  who tried to
usurp to themselves the right of sacrificing, contrary to the unity of
the people of God, and also the sons of Aaron who offered strange fire
upon the altar,  did not escape punishment. Nor do we say that
such offenses remain unpunished, unless those guilty of them correct
themselves, if the patience of God leading them to repentance 
give them time for correction.
 John xx. 21-23.
 1 Cor. ii. 15.
 Eph. v. 27. Cp. Retract. ii. 18, quoted above on I. xvii.
 Tit. i. 7.
 Num. xvi.
 Lev. x. 1, 2.
 Rom. ii. 4.
Chapter 19.--25. They indeed who say that baptism is not to be
repeated, because only hands were laid on those whom Philip the deacon
had baptized,  are saying what is quite beside the point; and
far be it from us, in seeking the truth, to use such arguments as
this. Wherefore we are all the further from "yielding to heretics,"
 if we deny that what they possess of Christ's Church is their
own property, and do not refuse to acknowledge the standard of our
General because of the crimes of deserters; nay, all the more because
"the Lord our God is a jealous God,"  let us refuse, whenever we
see anything of His with an alien, to allow him to consider it his
own. For of a truth the jealous God Himself rebukes the woman who
commits fornication against Him, as the type of an erring people, and
says that she gave to her lovers what belonged to Him, and again
received from them what was not theirs but His. In the hands of the
adulterous woman and the adulterous lovers, God in His wrath, as a
jealous God, recognizes His gifts; and do we say that baptism,
consecrated in the words of the gospel, belongs to heretics? and are
we willing, from consideration of their deeds, to attribute to them
even what belongs to God, as though they had the power to pollute it,
or as though they could make what is God's to be their own, because
they themselves have refused to belong to God?
26. Who is that adulterous woman whom the prophet Hosea points out,
who said, "I will go after my lovers, that give me my bread and my
water, my wool and my flax, and everything that befits me?" 
Let us grant that we may understand this also of the people of the
Jews that went astray; yet whom else are the false Christians (such as
are all heretics and schismatics) wont to imitate, except false
Israelites? For there were also true Israelites, as the Lord Himself
bears witness to Nathanael, "Behold an Israelite indeed, in whom is no
guile." But who are true Christians, save those of whom the
same Lord said, "He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it
is that loveth me?" But what is it to keep His commandments,
except to abide in love? Whence also He says, "A new commandment I
give unto you, that ye love one another;" and again, "By this shall
all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to
another." But who can doubt that this was spoken not only to
those who heard His words with their fleshly ears when He was present
with them, but also to those who learn His words through the gospel,
when He is sitting on His throne in heaven? For He came not to
destroy the law, but to fulfill. But the fulfilling of the
law is love. And in this Cyprian abounded greatly, insomuch
that though he held a different view concerning baptism, he yet did
not forsake the unity of the Church, and was in the Lord's vine a
branch firmly rooted, bearing fruit, which the heavenly Husbandman
purged with the knife of suffering, that it should bear more fruit.
But the enemies of this brotherly love, whether they are
openly without, or appear to be within, are false Christians, and
antichrists. For when they have found an opportunity, they go out, as
it is written: "A man wishing to separate himself from his friends,
seeketh opportunities." But even if occasions are wanting,
while they seem to be within, they are severed from that invisible
bond of love. Whence St. John says, "They went out from us, but they
were not of us; for had they been of us, they would no doubt have
continued with us." He does not say that they ceased to be of
us by going out, but that they went out because they were not of us.
The Apostle Paul also speaks of certain men who had erred concerning
the truth, and were overthrowing the faith of some; whose word was
eating as a canker. Yet in saying that they should be avoided, he
nevertheless intimates that they were all in one great house, but as
vessels to dishonor,--I suppose because they had not as yet gone out.
Or if they had already gone out, how can he say that they were in the
same great house with the honorable vessels, unless it was in virtue
of the sacraments themselves, which even in the severed meetings of
heretics are not changed, that he speaks of all as belonging to the
same great house, though in different degrees of esteem, some to honor
and some to dishonor? For thus he speaks in his Epistle to Timothy:
"But shun profane and vain babblings; for they will increase unto more
ungodliness. And their word will eat as doth a canker; of whom is
Hymenæus and Philetus; who concerning the truth have erred, saying
that the resurrection is past already; and overthrow the faith of
some. Nevertheless the foundation of God standeth firm, having this
seal, The Lord knoweth them that are His. And, Let every one that
nameth the name of Christ depart from iniquity. But in a great house
there are not only vessels of gold and of silver, but also of wood and
of earth; and some to honor, and some to dishonor. If a man therefore
purge himself from these, he shall be a vessel unto honor, sanctified,
and meet for the master's use, and prepared unto every good work."
But what is it to purge oneself from such as these, except
what he said just before, "Let every one that nameth the name of
Christ depart from iniquity." And lest any one should think that, as
being in one great house with them, he might perish with such as
these, he has most carefully forewarned them, "The Lord knoweth them
that are His,"--those, namely, who, by departing from iniquity, purge
themselves from the vessels made to dishonor, lest they should perish
with them whom they are compelled to tolerate in the great house.
27. They, therefore, who are wicked, evildoers, carnal, fleshly,
devilish, think that they receive at the hands of their seducers what
are the gifts of God alone, whether sacraments, or any spiritual
workings about present salvation. But these men have not love towards
God, but are busied about those by whose pride they are led astray,
and are compared to the adulterous woman, whom the prophet introduces
as saying, "I will go after my lovers, that give me my bread and my
water, my wool and my flax, and my oil, and everything that befits
me." For thus arise heresies and schisms, when the fleshly people
which is not founded on the love of God says, "I will go after my
lovers," with whom, either by corruption of her faith, or by the
puffing up of her pride, she shamefully commits adultery. But for the
sake of those who, having undergone the difficulties, and straits, and
barriers of the empty reasoning of those by whom they are led astray,
afterwards feel the prickings of fear, and return to the way of peace,
to seeking God in all sincerity,--for their sake He goes on to say,
"Therefore, behold, I will hedge up thy way with thorns, and make a
wall, that she shall not find her paths. And she shall follow after
her lovers, but she shall not overtake them: and she shall seek them,
but she shall not find them: then shall she say, I will go and return
to my first husband; for then was it better with me than now." Then,
that they may not attribute to their seducers what they have that is
sound, and derived from the doctrine of truth, by which they lead them
astray to the falseness of their own dogmas and dissensions; that they
may not think that what is sound in them belongs to them, he
immediately added, "And she did not know that I gave her corn, and
wine, and oil, and multiplied her money; but she made vessels of gold
and silver for Baal." For she had said above, "I will go
after my lovers, that give me my bread," etc., not at all
understanding that all this, which was held soundly and lawfully by
her seducers, was of God, and not of men. Nor would even they
themselves claim these things for themselves, and as it were assert a
right in them, had not they in turn been led astray by a people which
had gone astray, when faith is reposed in them, and such honors are
paid to them, that they should be enabled thereby to say such things,
and claim such things for themselves, that their error should be
called truth, and their iniquity be thought righteousness, in virtue
of the sacraments and Scriptures, which they hold, not for salvation,
but only in appearance. Accordingly, the same adulterous woman is
addressed by the mouth of Ezekiel: "Thou hast also taken thy fair
jewels of my gold and of my silver, which I had given thee, and madest
to thyself images of men, and didst commit whoredom with them; and
tookest my  broidered garments, and coveredst them: and thou
hast set mine oil and mine incense before them. My meat also which I
gave thee, fine flour, and oil, and honey, wherewith I fed thee, thou
hast even set it before thine idols for a sweet savor: and this thou
hast done." For she turns all the sacraments, and the words
of the sacred books, to the images of her own idols, with which her
carnal mind delights to wallow. Nor yet, because those images are
false, and the doctrines of devils, speaking lies in hypocrisy, 
are those sacraments and divine utterances therefore so to lose their
due honor, as to be thought to belong to such as these; seeing that
the Lord says," Of my gold, and my silver, and my broidered garments,
and mine oil, and mine incense, and my meat," and so forth. Ought we,
because those erring ones think that these things belong to their
seducers, therefore not to recognize whose they really are, when He
Himself says, "And she did not know that I gave her corn, and wine,
and oil, and multiplied her money"? For He did not say that she did
not have these things because she was an adulteress; but she is said
to have had them, and that not as belonging to herself or her lovers,
but to God, whose alone they are. Although, therefore, she had her
fornication, yet those things wherewith she adorned it, whether as
seduced or in her turn seducing, belonged not to her, but to God. If
these things were spoken in a figure of the Jewish nation, when the
scribes and Pharisees were rejecting the commandment of God in order
to set up their own traditions, so that they were in a manner
committing whoredom with a people which was abandoning their God; and
yet for all that, whoredom at that time among the people, such as the
Lord brought to light by convicting it, did not cause that the
mysteries should belong to them, which were not theirs but God's, who,
in speaking to the adulteress, says that all these things were His;
whence the Lord Himself also sent those whom He cleansed from leprosy
to the same mysteries, that they should offer sacrifice for themselves
before the priests, because that sacrifice had not become efficacious
for them, which He Himself afterwards wished to be commemorated in the
Church for all of them, because He Himself proclaimed the tidings to
them all;--if this be so, how much the more ought we, when we find the
sacraments of the New Testament among certain heretics or schismatics,
not to attribute them to these men, nor to condemn them, as though we
could not recognize them? We ought to recognize the gifts of the true
husband, though in the possession of an adulteress, and to amend, by
the word of truth, that whoredom which is the true possession of the
unchaste woman, instead of finding fault with the gifts, which belong
entirely to the pitying Lord.
28. From these considerations, and such as these, our forefathers,
not only before the time of Cyprian and Agrippinus, but even
afterwards, maintained a most wholesome custom, that whenever they
found anything divine and lawful remaining in its integrity even in
the midst of any heresy or schism, they approved rather than
repudiated it; but whatever they found that was alien, and peculiar to
that false doctrine or division, this they convicted in the light of
the truth, and healed. The points, however, which remain to be
considered in the letter written by Jubaianus, must, I think, when
looking at the size of this book, be taken in hand and treated with a
 Acts viii. 5-17.
 Because Cyprian, in his letter to Jubaianus (Ep. lxxiii. 10),
had urged as following from this, that "there is no reason, dearest
brother, why we should think it right to yield to heretics that
baptism which was granted to the one and only Church."
 Deut. iv. 24.
 Hos. ii. 5, cp. LXX.
 John i. 47.
 John xiv. 21.
 John xiii. 34, 35.
 Matt. v. 17.
 Rom. xiii. 10.
 John xv. 1-5.
 Prov. xviii. 1, cp. Hieron, and LXX.
 1 John ii. 19.
 2 Tim. ii. 16-21.
 Hos. ii. 5-8, cp. LXX.
 In Hieron, and LXX., as well as in the English version, this is
in the second person, vestimenta tua multicolaria; ton himatismon ton
 Ezek. xvi. 17-19.
 1 Tim. iv. 1, 2.
In which he treats of what follows in the same epistle of Cyprian to
Chapter 1.--1. The comparison of the Church with Paradise 
shows us that men may indeed receive her baptism outside her pale, but
that no one outside can either receive or retain the salvation of
eternal happiness. For, as the words of Scripture testify, the
streams from the fountain of Paradise flowed copiously even beyond its
bounds. Record indeed is made of their names; and through what
countries they flow, and that they are situated beyond the limits of
Paradise, is known to all;  and yet in Mesopotamia, and in
Egypt, to which countries those rivers extended, there is not found
that blessedness of life which is recorded in Paradise. Accordingly,
though the waters of Paradise are found beyond its boundaries, yet its
happiness is in Paradise alone. So, therefore, the baptism of the
Church may exist outside, but the gift of the life of happiness is
found alone within the Church, which has been founded on a rock, which
has received the keys of binding and loosing. "She it is
alone who holds as her privilege the whole power of her Bridegroom and
Lord;"  by virtue of which power as bride, she can bring forth
sons even of handmaids. And these, if they be not high-minded, shall
be called into the lot of the inheritance; but if they be high-minded,
they shall remain outside.
 Cypr. Ep. lxxiii. ad Jubaian. 10.
 Gen. ii. 8-14.
 Matt. xvi. 18, 19.
 Cypr. Ep. lxxiii. 11.
Chapter 2.--2. All the more, then, because "we are fighting 
for the honor and unity" of the Church, let us beware of giving to
heretics the credit of whatever we acknowledged among them as
belonging to the Church; but let us teach them by argument, that what
they possess that is derived from unity is of no efficacy to their
salvation, unless they shall return to that same unity. For "the
water of the Church is full of faith, and salvation, and holiness"
 to those who use it rightly. No one, however, can use it well
outside the Church. But to those who use it perversely, whether
within or without the Church, it is employed to work punishment, and
does not conduce to their reward. And so baptism "cannot be corrupted
and polluted," though it be handled by the corrupt or by adulterers,
just as also "the Church herself is uncorrupt, and pure, and chaste."
And so no share in it belongs to the avaricious, or thieves,
or usurers,--many of whom, by the testimony of Cyprian himself in many
places of his letters, exist not only without, but actually within the
Church,--and yet they both are baptized and do baptize, with no change
in their hearts.
3. For this, too, he says, in one of his epistles  to the
clergy on the subject of prayer toGod, in which, after the fashion of
the holy Daniel, he represents the sins of his people as falling upon
himself. For among many other evils of which he makes mention, he
speaks of them also as "renouncing the world in words only and not in
deeds;" as the apostle says of certain men, "They profess that they
know God, but in works they deny Him." These, therefore, the
blessed Cyprian shows to be contained within the Church herself, who
are baptized without their hearts being changed for the better, seeing
that they renounce the world in words and not in deeds, as the Apostle
Peter says, "The like figure whereunto even baptism doth also now save
us, (not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of
a good conscience),"  which certainly they had not of whom it is
said that they "renounced the world in words only, and not in deeds;"
and yet he does his utmost, by chiding and convincing them, to make
them at length walk in the way of Christ, and be His friends rather
than friends of the world.
 Cypr. Ep. lxxiii. 11.
 Cypr. Ep. xi. 1.
 Tit. i. 16.
 1 Pet. iii. 21.
Chapter 3.--4. And if they would have obeyed him, and begun to live
rightly, not as false but as true Christians, would he have ordered
them to be baptized anew? Surely not; but their true conversion would
have gained this for them, that the sacrament which availed for their
destruction while they were yet unchanged, should begin when they
changed to avail for their salvation.
5. For neither are they "devoted to the Church"  who seem to be
within and live contrary to Christ, that is, act against His
commandments; nor can they be considered in any way to belong to that
Church, which He so purifies by the washing of water, "that He may
present to Himself a glorious Church, not having spot or wrinkle, or
any such thing." But if they are not in that Church to whose
members they do not belong, they are not in the Church of which it is
said, "My dove is but one; she is the only one of her mother;" 
for she herself is without spot or wrinkle. Or else let him who can
assert that those are members of this dove who renounce the world in
words but not in deeds. Meantime there is one thing which we see,
from which I think it was said, "He that regardeth the day, regardeth
it unto the Lord,"  for God judgeth every day. For, according
to His foreknowledge, who knows whom He has foreordained before the
foundation of the world to be made like to the image of His Son, many
who are even openly outside, and are called heretics, are better than
many good Catholics. For we see what they are to-day, what they shall
be to-morrow we know not. And with God, with whom the future is
already present, they already are what they shall hereafter be. But
we, according to what each man is at present, inquire whether they are
to be to-day reckoned among the members of the Church which is called
the one dove, and the Bride of Christ without a spot or wrinkle,
 of whom Cyprian says in the letter which I have quoted above,
that "they did not keep in the way of the Lord, nor observe the
commandments given unto them for their salvation; that they did not
fulfill the will of their Lord, being eager about their property and
gains, following the dictates of pride, giving way to envy and
dissension, careless about single-mindedness and faith, renouncing the
world in words only and not in deeds, pleasing each himself, and
displeasing all men." But if the dove does not acknowledge
them among her members, and if the Lord shall say to them, supposing
that they continue in the same perversity, "I never knew you: depart
from me, ye that work iniquity;"  then they seem indeed to be in
the Church, but are not; "nay, they even act against the Church. How
then can they baptize with the baptism of the Church,"  which is
of avail neither to themselves, nor to those who receive it from them,
unless they are changed in heart with a true conversion, so that the
sacrament itself, which did not avail them when they received it
whilst they were renouncing the world in words and not in deeds, may
begin to profit them when they shall begin to renounce it in deeds
also? And so too in the case of those whose separation from the
Church is open; for neither these nor those are as yet among the
members of the dove, but some of them perhaps will be at some future
 Cypr. Ep. lxxiii. 11.
 Eph. v. 26, 27.
 Song of Sol. vi. 9.
 Rom. xiv. 6.
 Retract. ii. 18, quoted on I. 17.
 Cypr. Ep. xi. I, first part loosely quoted.
 Matt. vii. 23.
 Cypr. Ep. lxxiii. 11.
Chapter 4.--6. We do not, therefore, "acknowledge the baptism of
heretics,"  when we refuse to baptize after them; but because we
acknowledge the ordinance to be of Christ even among evil men, whether
openly separated from us, or secretly severed whilst within our body,
we receive it with due respect, having corrected those who were wrong
in the points wherein they went astray. However as I seem to be hard
pressed when it is said to me, "Does then a heretic confer remission
of sins?" so I in turn press hard when I say, Does then he who
violates the commands of Heaven, the avaricious man, the robber, the
usurer, the envious man, does he who renounces the world in words and
not in deeds, confer such remission? If you mean by the force of
God's sacrament, then both the one and the other; if by his own merit,
neither of them. For that sacrament, even in the hands of wicked men,
is known to be of Christ; but neither the one nor the other of these
men is found in the body of the one uncorrupt, holy, chaste dove,
which has neither spot nor wrinkle. And just as baptism is of no
profit to the man who renounces the world in words and not in deeds,
so it is of no profit to him who is baptized in heresy or schism; but
each of them, when he amends his ways, begins to receive profit from
that which before was not profitable, but was yet already in him.
7. "He therefore that is baptized in heresy does not become the
temple of God;  but does it therefore follow that he is not to
be considered as baptized? For neither does the avaricious man,
baptized within the Church, become the temple of God unless he depart
from his avarice; for they who become the temple of God certainly
inherit the kingdom of God. But the apostle says, among many other
things, "Neither the covetous, nor extortioners, shall inherit the
kingdom of God." For in another place the same apostle
compares covetousness to the worship of idols: "Nor covetous man," he
says, "who is an idolater;"  which meaning the same Cyprian has
so far extended in a letter to Antonianus, that he did not hesitate to
compare the sin of covetousness with that of men who in time of
persecution had declared in writing that they would offer incense.
The man, then, who is baptized in heresy in the name of the
Holy Trinity, yet does not become the temple of God unless he abandons
his heresy, just as the covetous man who has been baptized in the same
name does not become the temple of God unless he abandons his
covetousness, which is idolatry. For this, too, the same apostle
says: "What agreement hath the temple of God with idols?" 
Let it not, then, be asked of us "of what God he is made the temple"
 when we say that he is not made the temple of God at all. Yet
he is not therefore unbaptized, nor does his foul error cause that
what he has received, consecrated in the words of the gospel, should
not be the holy sacrament; just as the other man's covetousness (which
is idolatry) and great uncleanness cannot prevent what he receives
from being holy baptism, even though he be baptized with the same
words of the gospel by another man covetous like himself.
 Ib., lxiii. 12, quando a nobis baptisma eorum in acceptum
 Cypr. Ep. lxxvii. 12.
 1 Cor. vi. 10.
 Eph. v. 5.
 Cypr. Ep. lv. 26.
 2 Cor. vi. 16.
 Cypr. Ep. lxxvii. 12.
Chapter 5.--8. "Further," Cyprian goes on to say, "in vain do some,
who are overcome by reason, oppose to us custom, as though custom were
superior to truth, or that were not to be followed in spiritual things
which has been revealed by the Holy Spirit, as the better way." 
This is clearly true, since reason and truth are to be preferred to
custom. But when truth supports custom, nothing should be more
strongly maintained. Then he proceeds as follows: "For one may
pardon a man who merely errs, as the Apostle Paul says of himself,
`Who was before a blasphemer, a persecutor, and injurious; but I
obtained mercy, because I did it ignorantly;'  but he who, after
inspiration and revelation given, perseveres advisedly and knowingly
in his former error, sins without hope of pardon on the ground of
ignorance. For he rests on a kind of presumption and obstinacy, when
he is overcome by reason." This is most true, that his sin is much
more grievous who has sinned wittingly than his who has sinned through
ignorance. And so in the case of the holy Cyprian, who was not only
learned, but also patient of instruction, which he so fully himself
understood to be a part of the praise of the bishop whom the apostle
describes,  that he said, "This also should be approved in a
bishop, that he not only teach with knowledge, but also learn with
patience." I do not doubt that if he had had the opportunity
of discussing this question, which has been so long and so much
disputed in the Church, with the pious and learned men to whom we owe
it that subsequently that ancient custom was confirmed by the
authority of a plenary Council, he would have shown, without
hesitation, not only how learned he was in those things which he had
grasped with all the security of truth, but also how ready he was to
receive instruction in what he had failed to perceive. And yet, since
it is so clear that it is much more grievous to sin wittingly than in
ignorance, I should be glad if any one would tell me which is the
worse,--the man who falls into heresy, not knowing how great a sin it
is, or the man who refuses to abandon his covetousness, knowing its
enormity? I might even put the question thus: If one man unwittingly
fall into heresy, and another knowingly refuse to depart from
idolatry, since the apostle himself says, "The covetous man, which is
an idolater;" and Cyprian too understood the same passage in just the
same way, when he says, in his letter to Antonianus, "Nor let the new
heretics flatter themselves in this, that they say they do not
communicate with idolaters, whereas there are amongst them both
adulterers and covetous persons, who are held guilty of the sin of
idolatry; `for know this, and understand, that no whoremonger, nor
unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, hath any
inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God;'  and again,
`Mortify therefore your members which are upon the earth; fornication,
uncleanness, inordinate affection, evil concupiscence, and
covetousness, which is idolatry.'" I ask, therefore, which
sins more deeply,--he who ignorantly has fallen into heresy, or he who
wittingly has refused to abandon covetousness, that is idolatry?
According to that rule by which the sins of those who sin wittingly
are placed before those of the ignorant, the man who is covetous with
knowledge takes the first place in sin. But as it is possible that
the greatness of the actual sin should produce the same effect in the
case of heresy that the witting commission of the sin produces in that
of covetousness, let us suppose the ignorant heretic to be on a par in
guilt with the consciously covetous man, although the evidence which
Cyprian himself has advanced from the apostle does not seem to prove
this. For what is it that we abominate in heretics except their
blasphemies? But when he wished to show that ignorance of the sin may
conduce to ease in obtaining pardon, he advanced a proof from the case
of the apostle, when he says, "Who was before a blasphemer, and a
persecutor, and injurious; but I obtained mercy, because I did it
ignorantly." But if possible, as I said before, let the sins
of the two men--the blasphemy of the unconscious, and the idolatry of
the conscious sinner--be esteemed of equal weight; and let them be
judged by the same sentence,--he who, in seeking for Christ, falls
into a truth-like setting forth of what is false, and he who wittingly
resists Christ speaking through His apostle, "seeing that no
whoremonger, nor unclean person, nor covetous man, which is an
idolater, hath any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God,"
 --and then I would ask why baptism and the words of the gospel
are held as naught in the former case, and accounted valid in the
latter, when each is alike found to be estranged from the members of
the dove. Is it because the former is an open combatant outside, that
he should not be admitted, the latter a cunning assenter within the
fold, that he may not be expelled?
 Cypr. Ep. lxxiii. 13.
 1 Tim. i. 13.
 2 Tim. ii. 24.
 Cypr. Ep. lxxiv. 10.
 Eph. v. 5.
 Col. iii. 5. Cypr. Ep. lv. 27.
 1 Tim. i. 13.
 Eph. v. 5.
Chapter 6.--9. But as regards his saying, "Nor let any one affirm
that what they have received from the apostles, that they follow; for
the apostles handed down only one Church and one baptism, and that
appointed only in the same Church:" this does not so much
move me to venture to condemn the baptism of Christ when found amongst
heretics (just as it is necessary to recognize the gospel itself when
I find it with them, though I abominate their error), as it warns me
that there were some even in the times of the holy Cyprian who traced
to the authority of the apostles that custom against which the African
Councils were held, and in respect of which he himself said a little
above, "In vain do those who are beaten by reason oppose to us the
authority of custom." Nor do I find the reason why the same Cyprian
found this very custom, which after his time was confirmed by nothing
less than a plenary Council of the whole world, already so strong
before his time, that when with all his learning he sought an
authority worth following for changing it, he found nothing but a
Council of Agrippinus held in Africa a very few years before his own
time. And seeing that this was not enough for him, as against the
custom of the whole world, he laid hold on these reasons which we just
now, considering them with great care, and being confirmed by the
antiquity of the custom itself, and by the subsequent authority of a
plenary Council, found to be truth-like rather than true; which,
however, seemed to him true, as he toiled in a question of the
greatest obscurity, and was in doubt about the remission of
sins,--whether it could fail to be given in the baptism of Christ, and
whether it could be given among heretics. In which matter, if an
imperfect revelation of the truth was given to Cyprian, that the
greatness of his love in not deserting the unity of the Church might
be made manifest, there is yet not any reason why any one should
venture to claim superiority over the strong defenses and excellence
of his virtues, and the abundance of graces which were found in him,
merely because, with the instruction derived from the strength of a
general Council, he sees something which Cyprian did not see, because
the Church had not yet held a plenary Council on the matter. Just as
no one is so insane as to set himself up as surpassing the merits of
the Apostle Peter, because, taught by the epistles of the Apostle
Paul, and confirmed by the custom of the Church herself, he does not
compel the Gentiles to judaize, as Peter once had done. 
10. We do not then "find that any one, after being baptized among
heretics, was afterwards admitted by the apostles with the same
baptism, and communicated;"  but neither do we find this, that
any one coming from the society of heretics, who had been baptized
among them, was baptized anew by the apostles. But this custom, which
even then those who looked back to past ages could not find to have
been invented by men of a later time, is rightly believed to have been
handed down from the apostles. And there are many other things of the
same kind, which it would be tedious to recount. Wherefore, if they
had something to say for themselves to whom Cyprian, wishing to
persuade them of the truth of his own view, says, "Let no one say,
What we have received from the apostles, that we follow," with how
much more force we now say, What the custom of the Church has always
held, what this argument has failed to prove false, and what a plenary
Council has confirmed, this we follow! To this we may add that it may
also be said, after a careful inquiry into the reasoning on both sides
of the discussion, and into the evidence of Scripture, What truth has
declared, that we follow.
 Cypr. Ep. lxxiii. 13.
 Gal. ii. 14.
 Cypr. Ep. lxxiii. 13.
Chapter 7.--11. For in fact, as to what some opposed to the reasoning
of Cyprian, that the apostle says, "Notwithstanding every way, whether
in pretence or in truth, let Christ be preached;"  Cyprian
rightly exposed their error, showing that it has nothing to do with
the case of heretics, since the apostle was speaking of those who were
acting within the Church, with malicious envy seeking their own
profit. They announced Christ, indeed, according to the truth whereby
we believe in Christ, but not in the spirit in which He was announced
by the good evangelists to the sons of the dove. "For Paul," he says,
"in his epistle was not speaking of heretics, or of their baptism, so
that it could be shown that he had laid down anything concerning this
matter. He was speaking of brethren, whether as walking disorderly
and contrary to the discipline of the Church, or as keeping the
discipline of the Church in the fear of God. And he declared that
some of them spoke the word of God steadfastly and fearlessly, but
that some were acting in envy and strife; that some had kept
themselves encompassed with kindly Christian love, but that others
entertained malice and strife: but yet that he patiently endured all
things, with the view that, whether in truth or in pretence, the name
of Christ, which Paul preached, might come to the knowledge of the
greatest number, and that the sowing of the word, which was as yet a
new and unaccustomed work, might spread more widely by the preaching
of those that spoke. Furthermore, it is one thing for those who are
within the Church to speak in the name of Christ, another thing for
those who are without, acting against the Church, to baptize in the
name of Christ." These words of Cyprian seem to warn us that
we must distinguish between those who are bad outside, and those who
are bad within the Church. And those whom he says that the apostle
represents as preaching the gospel impurely and of envy, he says truly
were within. This much, however, I think I may say without rashness,
if no one outside can have anything which is of Christ, neither can
any one within have anything which is of the devil. For if that
closed garden can contain the thorns of the devil, why cannot the
fountain of Christ equally flow beyond the garden's bounds? But if it
cannot contain them, whence, even in the time of the Apostle Paul
himself, did there arise amongst those who were within so great an
evil of envy and malicious strife? For these are the words of
Cyprian. Can it be that envy and malicious strife are a small evil?
How then were those in unity who were not at peace? For it is not my
voice, nor that of any man, but of the Lord Himself; nor did the sound
go forth from men, but from angels, at the birth of Christ, "Glory to
God in the highest, and on earth peace to men of good will." 
And this certainly would not have been proclaimed by the voice of
angels when Christ was born upon the earth, unless God wished this to
be understood, that those are in the unity of the body of Christ who
are united in the peace of Christ, and those are in the peace of
Christ who are of good will. Furthermore, as good will is shown in
kindliness, so is bad will shown in malice.
 Phil. i. 18. Hieron. "annuntietur."
 Cypr. Ep. lxxiii. 14.
 Luke ii. 14. "Hominibus bonæ voluntatis;" and so the Vulgate,
following the reading en anthropois eudokias.
Chapter 8.--12. In short, we may see how great an evil in itself is
envy, which cannot be other than malicious. Let us not look for other
testimony. Cyprian himself is sufficient for us, through whose mouth
the Lord poured forth so many thunders in most perfect truth, and
uttered so many useful precepts about envy and malignity. Let us
therefore read the letter of Cyprian about envy and malignity, and see
how great an evil it is to envy those better than ourselves,--an evil
whose origin he shows in memorable words to have sprung from the devil
himself. "To feel jealousy," he says, "of what you regard as good,
and to envy those who are better than yourselves, to some, dearest
brethren, seems a light and minute offense." And again a
little later, when he was inquiring into the source and origin of the
evil, he says, "From this the devil, in the very beginning of the
world, perished first himself, and led others to destruction." 
And further on in the same chapter: "What an evil, dearest
brethren, is that by which an angel fell! by which that exalted and
illustrious loftiness was able to be deceived and overthrown! by which
he was deceived who was the deceiver! From that time envy stalks upon
the earth, when man, about to perish through malignity, submits
himself to the teacher of perdition,--when he who envies imitates the
devil, as it is written, `Through envy of the devil came death into
the world, and they that do hold of his side do find it.'" 
How true, how forcible are these words of Cyprian, in an epistle known
throughout the world, we cannot fail to recognize. It was truly
fitting for Cyprian to argue and warn most forcibly about envy and
malignity, from which most deadly evil he proved his own heart to be
so far removed by the abundance of his Christian love; by carefully
guarding which he remained in the unity of communion with his
colleagues, who without ill-feeling entertained different views about
baptism, whilst he himself differed in opinion from them, not through
any contention of ill will, but through human infirmity, erring in a
point which God, in His own good time, would reveal to him by reason
of his perseverance in love. For he says openly, "Judging no one, nor
depriving any of the right of communion if he differ from us. For no
one of us setteth himself up as a bishop of bishops, or by tyrannical
terror forces his colleagues to a necessity of obeying." And
in the end of the epistle before us he says, "These things I have
written to you briefly, dearest brother, according to my poor ability,
prescribing to or prejudging no one, so as to prevent each bishop from
doing what he thinks right in the free exercise of his own judgment.
We, so far as in us lies, do not strive on behalf of heretics with our
colleges and fellow-bishops, with whom we hold the harmony that God
enjoins, and the peace of our Lord, especially as the apostle says,
`If any man seem to be contentious, we have no such custom, neither
the churches of God.' Christian love in our souls, the honor
of our fraternity, the bond of faith, the harmony of the priesthood,
all these are maintained by us with patience and gentleness. For this
cause we have also, so far as our poor ability admitted, by the
permission and inspiration of the Lord, written now a treatise on the
benefit of patience,  which we have sent to you in consideration
of our mutual affection." 
 Cypr. de Zel. et Liv. c. 1.
 Ib. c. 4.
 Wisd. ii. 24, 25.
 Conc. Carth. sub in.
 1 Cor. xi. 16.
 This treatise is still extant. See Trans. in Ante-Nicene
Fathers, vol. V. 484-490.
 Cypr. Ep. lxxiii. 26.
Chapter 9.--13. By this patience of Christian love he not only
endured the difference of opinion manifested in all kindliness by his
good colleagues on an obscure point, as he also himself received
toleration, till, in process of time, when it so pleased God, what had
always been a most wholesome custom was further confirmed by a
declaration of the truth in a plenary Council, but he even put up with
those who were manifestly bad, as was very well known to himself, who
did not entertain a different view in consequence of the obscurity of
the question, but acted contrary to their preaching in the evil
practices of an abandoned life, as the apostle says of them, "Thou
that preachest a man should not steal, dost thou steal?" For
Cyprian says in his letter of such bishops of his own time, his own
colleagues, and remaining in communion with him, "While they had
brethren starving in the Church, they tried to amass large sums of
money, they took possession of estates by fraudulent proceedings, they
multiplied their gains by accumulated usuries." For here
there is no obscure question. Scripture declares openly, "Neither
covetous nor extortioners shall inherit the kingdom of God;" 
and "He that putteth out his money to usury,"  and "No
whoremonger, nor unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater,
hath any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God." He
therefore certainly would not, without knowledge, have brought
accusations of such covetousness, that men not only greedily treasured
up their own goods, but also fraudulently appropriated the goods of
others, or of idolatry existing in such enormity as he understands and
proves it to exist; nor assuredly would he bear false witness against
his fellow-bishops. And yet with the bowels of fatherly and motherly
love he endured them, lest that, by rooting out the tares before their
time, the wheat should also have been rooted up,  imitating
assuredly the Apostle Paul, who, with the same love towards the
Church, endured those who were ill-disposed and envious towards him.
14. But yet because "by the envy of the devil death entered into the
world, and they that do hold of his side do find it,"  not
because they are created by God, but because they go astray of
themselves, as Cyprian also says himself, seeing that the devil,
before he was a devil, was an angel, and good, how can it be that they
who are of the devil's side are in the unity of Christ? Beyond all
doubt, as the Lord Himself says, "an enemy hath done this," who "sowed
tares among the wheat." As therefore what is of the devil
within the fold must be convicted, so what is of Christ without must
be recognized. Has the devil what is his within the unity of the
Church, and shall Christ not have what is His without? This, perhaps,
might be said of individual men, that as the devil has none that are
his among the holy angels, so God has none that are His outside the
communion of the Church. But though it may be allowed to the devil to
mingle tares, that is, wicked men, with this Church which still wears
the mortal nature of flesh, so long as it is wandering far from God,
he being allowed this just because of the pilgrimage of the Church
herself, that men may desire more ardently the rest of that country
which the angels enjoy, yet this cannot be said of the sacraments.
For, as the tares within the Church can have and handle them, though
not for salvation, but for the destruction to which they are destined
in the fire, so also can the tares without, which received them from
seceders from within; for they did not lose them by seceding. This,
indeed, is made plain from the fact that baptism is not conferred
again on their return, when any of the very men who seceded happen to
come back again. And let not any one say, Why, what fruit hath the
tares? For if this be so, their condition is the same, so far as this
goes, both inside and without. For it surely cannot be that grains of
corn are found in the tares inside, and not in those without. But
when the question is of the sacrament, we do not consider whether the
tares bear any fruit, but whether they have any share of heaven; for
the tares, both within and without, share the rain with the wheat
itself, which rain is in itself heavenly and sweet, even though under
its influence the tares grow up in barrenness. And so the sacrament,
according to the gospel of Christ, is divine and pleasant; nor is it
to be esteemed as naught because of the barrenness of those on whom
its dew falls even without.
 Rom. ii. 21.
 Cypr. de Lapsis. c. vi.
 1 Cor. vi. 10.
 Ps. xv. 5.
 Eph. v. 5.
 Matt. xiii. 29.
 Phil. i. 15-18.
 Wisd. ii. 24, 25.
 Matt. xiii. 28, 25.
Chapter 10.--15. But some one may say that the tares within may more
easily be converted into wheat. I grant that it is so; but what has
this to do with the question of repeating baptism? You surely do not
maintain that if a man converted from heresy, through the occasion and
opportunity given by his conversion, should bear fruit before another
who, being within the Church, is more slow to be washed from his
iniquity, and so corrected and changed, the former therefore needs not
to be baptized again, but the churchman to be baptized again, who was
outstripped by him who came from the heretics, because of the greater
slowness of his amendment. It has nothing, therefore, to do with the
question now at issue who is later or slower in being converted from
his especial waywardness to the straight path of faith, or hope, or
charity. For although the bad within the fold are more easily made
good yet it will sometimes happen that certain of the number of those
outside will outstrip in their conversion certain of those within; and
while these remain in barrenness, the former, being restored to unity
and communion, will bear fruit with patience, thirty-fold, or
sixty-fold, or a hundred-fold. Or if those only are to be
called tares who remain in perverse error to the end, there are many
ears of corn outside, and many tares within.
16. But it will be urged that the bad outside are worse than those
within. It is indeed a weighty question, whether Nicolaus, being
already severed from the Church,  or Simon, who was still within
it,  was the worse,--the one being a heretic, the other a
sorcerer. But if the mere fact of division, as being the clearest
token of violated charity, is held to be the worse evil, I grant that
it is so. Yet many, though they have lost all feelings of charity,
yet do not secede from considerations of worldly profit; and as they
seek their own, not the things which are Jesus Christ's,  what
they are unwilling to secede from is not the unity of Christ, but
their own temporal advantage. Whence it is said in praise of charity,
that she "seeketh not her own." 
17. Now, therefore, the question is, how could men of the party of
the devil belong to the Church, which has no spot, or wrinkle, or any
such thing,  of which also it is said, "My dove is one?" 
But if they cannot, it is clear that she groans among those who are
not of her, some treacherously laying wait within, some barking at her
gate without. Such men, however, even within, both receive baptism,
and possess it, and transmit it holy in itself; nor is it in any way
defiled by their wickedness, in which they persevere even to the end.
Wherefore the same blessed Cyprian teaches us that baptism is to be
considered as consecrated in itself by the words of the gospel, as the
Church has received, without joining to it or mingling with it any
consideration of waywardness and wickedness on the part of either
minister or recipients; since he himself points out to us both
truths,--both that there have been some within the Church who did not
cherish kindly Christian love, but practised envy and unkind
dissension, of whom the Apostle Paul spoke; and also that the envious
belong to the devil's party, as he testifies in the most open way in
the epistle which he wrote about envy and malignity. Wherefore, since
it is clearly possible that in those who belong to the devil's party,
Christ's sacrament may yet be holy,--not, indeed, to their salvation,
but to their condemnation, and that not only if they are led astray
after they have been baptized, but even if they were such in heart
when they received the sacrament, renouncing the world (as the same
Cyprian shows) in words only and not in deeds;  and since even
if afterwards they be brought into the right way, the sacrament is not
to be again administered which they received when they were astray; so
far as I can see, the case is already clear and evident, that in the
question of baptism we have to consider, not who gives, but what he
gives; not who receives, but what he receives; not who has, but what
he has. For if men of the party of the devil, and therefore in no way
belonging to the one dove, can yet receive, and have, and give baptism
in all its holiness, in no way defiled by their waywardness, as we are
taught by the letters of Cyprian himself, how are we ascribing to
heretics what does not belong to them? how are we saying that what is
really Christ's is theirs, and not rather recognizing in them the
signs of our Sovereign, and correcting the deeds of deserters from
Him? Wherefore it is one thing, as the holy Cyprian says, "for those
within in the Church, to speak in the name of Christ, another thing
for those without, who are acting against the Church, to baptize in
His name." But both many who are within act against the
Church by evil living, and by enticing weak souls to copy their lives;
and some who are without speak in Christ's name, and are not forbidden
to work the works of Christ, but only to be without, since for the
healing of their souls we grasp at them, or reason with them, or
exhort them. For he, too, was without who did not follow Christ with
His disciples, and yet in Christ's name was casting out devils, which
the Lord enjoined that he should not be prevented from doing; 
although, certainly, in the point where he was imperfect he was to be
made whole, in accordance with the words of the Lord, in which He
says, "He that is not with me is against me; and he that gathereth not
with me scattereth abroad." Therefore both some things are
done outside in the name of Christ not against the Church, and some
things are done inside on the devil's part which are against the
 Matt. xiii. 23; Luke viii. 15.
 Rev. ii. 6.
 Acts viii. 9-24.
 Phil. ii. 21.
 1 Cor. xiii. 5.
 Eph. v. 27; Retract. ii. 18.
 Song of Sol. vi. 9.
 Cypr. Ep. xi. i.
 Cypr. Ep. lxxiii. 14.
 Luke ix. 49, 50.
 Matt. xii. 30.
Chapter 11.--18. What shall we say of what is also wonderful, that he
who carefully observes may find that it is possible that certain
persons, without violating Christian charity, may yet teach what is
useless, as Peter wished to compel the Gentiles to observe Jewish
customs,  as Cyprian himself would force heretics to be baptized
anew? whence the apostle says to such good members, who are rooted in
charity, and yet walk not rightly in some points, "If in anything ye
be otherwise minded, God shall reveal even this unto you;"  and
that some again, though devoid of charity, may teach something
wholesome? of whom the Lord says, "The scribes and the Pharisees sit
in Moses' seat: all therefore whatsoever they bid you observe, that
observe and do; but do not ye after their works: for they say and do
not." Whence the apostle also says of those envious and
malicious ones who yet preach salvation through Christ, "Whether in
pretense, or in truth, let Christ be preached." Wherefore,
both within and without, the waywardness of man is to be corrected,
but the divine sacraments and utterances are not to be attributed to
men. He is not, therefore, a "patron of heretics" who refuses to
attribute to them what he knows not to belong to them, even though it
be found among them. We do not grant baptism to be theirs; but we
recognize His baptism of whom it is said, "The same is He which
baptizeth,"  wheresoever we find it. But if "the treacherous
and blasphemous man" continue in his treachery and blasphemy, he
receives no "remission of sins either without" or within the Church;
or if, by the power of the sacrament, he receives it for the moment,
the same force operates both without and within, as the power of the
name of Christ used to work the expulsion of devils even without the
 Gal. ii. 14.
 Phil. iii. 15.
 Matt. xxiii. 2, 3.
 Phil. i. 18; see on ch. 7. 10.
 John i. 33.
Chapter 12.--19. But he urges that "we find that the apostles, in all
their epistles, execrated and abhorred the sacrilegious wickedness of
heretics, so as to say that `their word does spread as a canker.'"
What then? Does not Paul also show that those who said, "Let
us eat and drink, for to-morrow we die," were corrupters of good
manners by their evil communications, adding immediately afterwards,
"Evil communications corrupt good manners;" and yet he intimated that
these were within the Church when he says, "How say some among you
that there is no resurrection of the dead?" But when does he
fail to express his abhorrence of the covetous? Or could anything be
said in stronger terms, than that covetousness should be called
idolatry, as the same apostle declared? Nor did Cyprian
understand his language otherwise, inserting it when need required in
his letters; though he confesses that in his time there were in the
Church not covetous men of an ordinary type, but robbers and usurers,
and these found not among the masses, but among the bishops. And yet
I should be willing to understand that those of whom the apostle says,
"Their word does spread as a canker," were without the Church, but
Cyprian himself will not allow me. For, when showing, in his letter
to Antonianus,  that no man ought to sever himself from the
unity of the Church before the time of the final separation of the
just and unjust, merely because of the admixture of evil men in the
Church, when he makes it manifest how holy he was, and deserving of
the illustrious martyrdom which he won, he says, "What swelling of
arrogance it is, what forgetfulness of humility and gentleness, that
any one should dare or believe that he can do what the Lord did not
grant even to the apostles,--to think that he can distinguish the
tares from the wheat, or, as if it were granted to him to carry the
fan and purge the floor, to endeavor to separate the chaff from the
grain! And whereas the apostle says, `But in a great house there are
not only vessels of gold and of silver, but also of wood and of
earth,'  that he should seem to choose those of gold and of
silver, and despise and cast away and condemn those of wood and of
earth, when really the vessels of wood are only to be burned in the
day of the Lord by the burning of the divine conflagration, and those
of earth are to be broken by Him to whom the `rod of iron  has
been given.'" By this argument, therefore, against those who,
under the pretext of avoiding the society of wicked men, had severed
themselves from the unity of the Church, Cyprian shows that by the
great house of which the apostle spoke, in which there were not only
vessels of gold and of silver, but also of wood and of earth, he
understood nothing else but the Church, in which there should be good
and bad, till at the last day it should be cleansed as a
threshing-floor by the winnowing-fan. And if this be so, in the
Church herself, that is, in the great house itself, there were vessels
to dishonor, whose word did spread like a canker. For the apostle,
speaking of them, taught as follows: "And their word," he says, "will
spread as doth a canker; of whom is Hymenæus and Philetus; who
concerning the truth have erred, saying that the resurrection is past
already; and overthrow the faith of some. Nevertheless the foundation
of God standeth sure, having this seal, The Lord knoweth them that are
His. And, Let every one that nameth the name of Christ depart from
iniquity. But in a great house there are not only vessels of gold and
of silver, but also of wood and of earth." If, therefore,
they whose words did spread as doth a canker were as it were vessels
to dishonor in the great house, and by that "great house" Cyprian
understands the unity of the Church itself, surely it cannot be that
their canker polluted the baptism of Christ. Accordingly, neither
without, any more than within, can any one who is of the devil's
party, either in himself or in any other person, stain the sacrament
which is of Christ. It is not, therefore, the case that "the word
which spreads as a canker to the ears of those who hear it gives
remission of sins;"  but when baptism is given in the words of
the gospel, however great be the perverseness of understanding on the
part either of him through whom, or of him to whom it is given, the
sacrament itself is holy in itself on account of Him whose sacrament
it is. And if any one, receiving it at the hands of a misguided man,
yet does not receive the perversity of the minister, but only the
holiness of the mystery, being closely bound to the unity of the
Church in good faith and hope and charity, he receives remission of
his sins,--not by the words which do eat as doth a canker, but by the
sacraments of the gospel flowing from a heavenly source. But if the
recipient himself be misguided, on the one hand, what is given is of
no avail for the salvation of the misguided man; and yet, on the other
hand, that which is received remains holy in the recipient, and is not
renewed to him if he be brought to the right way.
 Cypr. Ep. lxxiii. 15; 2 Tim. ii. 17.
 1 Cor. xv. 32, 33, 12.
 Eph. v. 5.
 Antonianus, a bishop of Numidia, wrote 252 A.D., to Cyprian,
favoring his milder view in opposition to the purism of Novatian:
subsequently Novatian wrote to him, advocating the purist movement and
impugning the laxity of Cornelius, bp. of Rome. To overthrow the
effect upon A. of this letter, Cyprian wrote Epistle LV. In Ep LXX.,
A. is of the number of those Numidian bishops whom Cyprian addresses.
 2 Tim. ii. 20.
 Ps. ii. 9.
 Cypr. Ep. lv. 25.
 2 Tim. ii. 17-20.
 Cypr. Ep. lxxiii. 15.
Chapter 13.--20. There is therefore "no fellowship between
righteousness and unrighteousness,"  not only without, but also
within the Church; for "the Lord knoweth them that are His," and "Let
every one that nameth the name of Christ depart from iniquity." There
is also "no communion between light and darkness,"  not only
without, but also within the Church; for "he that hateth his brother
is still in darkness." And they at any rate hated Paul, who,
preaching Christ of envy and malicious strife, supposed that they
added affliction to his bonds;  and yet the same Cyprian
understands these still to have been within the Church. Since,
therefore, "neither darkness can enlighten, nor unrighteousness
justify,"  as Cyprian again says, I ask, how could those men
baptize within the very Church herself? I ask, how could those
vessels which the large house contains not to honor, but to dishonor,
administer what is holy for the sanctifying of men within the great
house itself, unless because that holiness of the sacrament cannot be
polluted even by the unclean, either when it is given at their hands,
or when it is received by those who in heart and life are not changed
for the better? of whom, as situated within the Church, Cyprian
himself says, "Renouncing the world in word only, and not in deed."
21. There are therefore also within the Church "enemies of God, whose
hearts the spirit of Antichrist has possessed;" and yet they, "deal
with spiritual and divine things,"  which cannot profit for
their salvation so long as they remain such as they are; and yet
neither can they pollute them by their own uncleanness. With regard
to what he says, therefore, "that they have no part given them in the
saving grace of the Church, who, scattering and fighting against the
Church of Christ, are called adversaries by Christ Himself, and
antichrists by His apostles,  this must be received under the
consideration that there are men of this kind both within and
without. But the separation of those that are within from the
perfection and unity of the dove is not only known in the case of some
men to God, but even in the case of some to their fellow-men; for, by
regarding their openly abandoned life and confirmed wickedness, and
comparing it with the rules of God's commandments, they understand to
what a multitude of tares and chaff, situated now some within and some
without, but destined to be most manifestly separated at the last day,
the Lord will then say, "Depart from me, ye that work iniquity,"
 and "Depart into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and
his angels." 
 Cypr. Ep. lxxiii. 15; 2 Cor. vi. 14.
 1 John ii. 9.
 Phil. i. 15, 16.
 Cypr l.c.
 Cypr Ep. xi. 1.
 Cypr. Ep. lxxiii. 15.
 Cypr. Ep. lxxiii. 15.
 Matt. vii. 23.
 Matt. xxv. 41.
Chapter 14.--22. But we must not despair of the conversion of any
man, whether situated within or without, so long as "the goodness of
God leadeth him to repentance,"  and "visits their
transgressions with the rod, and their inquiry with stripes." For in
this way "He does not utterly take from them His loving-kindness,"
 if they will themselves sometimes "love their own soul,
pleasing God." But as the good man "that shall endure unto
the end, the same shall be saved,"  so the bad man, whether
within or without, who shall persevere in his wickedness to the end,
shall not be saved. Nor do we say that "all, wheresoever and
howsoever baptized, obtain the grace of baptism,"  if by the
grace of baptism is understood the actual salvation which is conferred
by the celebration of the sacrament; but many fail to obtain this
salvation even within the Church, although it is clear that they
possess the sacrament, which is holy in itself. Well, therefore, does
the Lord warn us in the gospel that we should not company with
ill-advisers,  who walk under the pretence of Christ's name; but
these are found both within and without, as, in fact, they do not
proceed without unless they have first been ill-disposed within. And
we know that the apostle said of the vessels placed in the great
house, "If a man therefore purge himself from these, he shall be a
vessel unto honor, sanctified, and meet for the Master's use, and
prepared unto every good work." But in what manner each man
ought to purge himself from these he shows a little above, saying,
"Let every one that nameth the name of Christ depart from iniquity,"
 that he may not in the last day, with the chaff, whether with
that which has already been driven from the threshing-floor, or with
that which is to be separated at the last, hear the command, "Depart
from me, ye that work iniquity." Whence it appears, indeed,
as Cyprian says, that "we are not at once to admit and adopt
whatsoever is professed in the name of Christ, but only what is done
in the truth of Christ." But it is not an action done in the
truth of Christ that men should "seize on estates by fraudulent
pretenses, and increase their gains by accumulated usury,"  or
that they should "renounce the world in word only;"  and yet,
that all this is done within the Church, Cyprian himself bears
 Rom. ii. 4.
 Ps. lxxxix. 32, 33.
 Ecclus. xxx. 23. The words, "placentes Deo" are derived from
the Latin version only.
 Matt. xxiv. 13.
 From a letter of Pope Stephen's, quoted Cypr. Ep. lxxiii. 16.
 Mark xiii. 21.
 2 Tim. ii. 21.
 2 Tim. ii. 19.
 Matt. vii. 23.
 Cypr. Ep. lxxiii. 16.
 Ib. de Laps. c. vi.
 Ib. Ep. xi. 1.
Chapter 15.--23. To go on to the point which he pursues at great
length, that "they who blaspheme the Father of Christ cannot be
baptized in Christ,"  since it is clear that they blaspheme
through error (for he who comes to the baptism of Christ will not
openly blaspheme the Father of Christ, but he is led to blaspheme by
holding a view contrary to the teaching of the truth about the Father
of Christ), we have already shown at sufficient length that baptism,
consecrated in the words of the gospel, is not affected by the error
of any man, whether ministrant or recipient, whether he hold views
contrary to the revelation of divine teaching on the subject of the
Father, or the Son, or the Holy Ghost. For many carnal and natural
men are baptized even within the Church, as the apostle expressly
says: "The natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of
God;"  and after they had received baptism, he says that they
"are yet carnal." But according to it carnal sense, a soul
given up to fleshly appetites cannot entertain but fleshly wisdom
about God. Wherefore many, progressing after baptism, and especially
those who have been baptized in infancy or early youth, in proportion
as their intellect becomes clearer and brighter, while "the inward man
is renewed day by day,"  throw away their former opinions which
they held about God while they were mocked with vain imaginings, with
scorn and horror and confession of their mistake. And yet they are
not therefore considered not to have received baptism, or to have
received baptism of a kind corresponding to their error; but in them
both the perfection of the sacrament is honored and the delusion of
their mind is corrected, even though it had become inveterate through
long confirmation, or been, perhaps, maintained in many
controversies. Wherefore even the heretic, who is manifestly without,
if he has there received baptism as ordained in the gospel, has
certainly not received baptism of a kind corresponding to the error
which blinds him. And therefore, in returning into the way of wisdom
he perceives that he ought to relinquish what he has held amiss, he
must not at the same time give up the good which he had received; nor
because his error is to be condemned, is the baptism of Christ in him
to be therefore extinguished. For it is already sufficiently clear,
from the case of those who happen to be baptized within the Church
with false views about God, that the truth of the sacrament is to be
distinguished from the error of him who believes amiss, although both
may be found in the same man. And therefore, when any one grounded in
any error, even outside the Church, has yet been baptized with the
true sacrament, when he is restored to the unity of the Church, a true
baptism cannot take the place of a true baptism, as a true faith takes
the place of a false one, because a thing cannot take the place of
itself, since neither can it give place. Heretics therefore join the
Catholic Church to this end, that what they have evil of themselves
may be corrected, not that what they have good of God should be
 Ib. Ep. lxxiii. 17.
 1 Cor. ii. 14.
 1 Cor. iii. 3.
 2 Cor. iv. 16.
Chapter 16.--24. Some one says, Does it then make no difference, if
two men, rooted in like error and wickedness, be baptized without
change of life or heart, one without, the other within the Church? I
acknowledge that there is a difference. For he is worse who is
baptized without, in addition to his other sin,--not because of his
baptism, however, but because he is without; for the evil of division
is in itself far from insignificant or trivial. Yet the difference
exists only if he who is baptized within has desired to be within not
for the sake of any earthly or temporal advantage, but because he has
preferred the unity of the Church spread throughout the world to the
divisions of schism; otherwise he too must be considered among those
who are without. Let us therefore put the two cases in this way. Let
us suppose that the one, for the sake of argument, held the same
opinions as Photinus  about Christ, and was baptized in his
heresy outside the communion of the Catholic Church; and that another
held the same opinion but was baptized in the Catholic Church,
believing that his view was really the Catholic faith. I consider him
as not yet a heretic, unless, when the doctrine of the Catholic faith
is made clear to him, he chooses to resist it, and prefers that which
he already holds; and till this is the case, it is clear that he who
was baptized outside is the worse. And so in the one case erroneous
opinion alone, in the other the sin of schism also, requires
correction; but in neither of them is the truth of the sacrament to be
repeated. But if any one holds the same view as the first, and knows
that it is only in heresy severed from the Church that such a view is
taught or learned, but yet for the sake of some temporal emolument has
desired to be baptized in the Catholic unity, or, having been already
baptized in it, is unwilling on account of the said emolument to
secede from it, he is not only to be considered as seceding, but his
offense is aggravated, in so far as to the error of heresy and the
division of unity he adds the deceit of hypocrisy. Wherefore the
depravity of each man, in proportion as it is more dangerous and
wanting in straightforwardness, must be corrected with the more
earnestness and energy; and yet, if he has anything that is good in
him, especially if it be not of himself, but from God, we ought not to
think it of no value because of his depravity, or to be blamed like
it, or to be ascribed to it, rather than to His bountiful goodness,
who even to a soul that plays the harlot, and goes after her lovers,
yet gives His bread, and His wine, and His oil, and other food or
ornaments, which are neither from herself nor from her lovers, but
from Him who in compassion for her is even desirous to warn her to
whom she should return. 
 Various Synods from 345 on anathematized Photinus, the bishop
of Sirmium. The two of Sirmium, 351 and 357, accused him of
constituting two Gods.
 Hos. ii. 5-8.
Chapter 17.--25. "Can the power of baptism," says Cyprian, "be
greater or better than confession? than martyrdom? that a man should
confess Christ before men, and be baptized in his own blood? And
yet," he goes on to say, "neither does this baptism profit the
heretic, even though for confessing Christ he be put to death outside
the Church." This is most true; for, by being put to death
outside the Church, he is proved not to have had charity, of which the
apostle says, "Though I give my body to be burned, and have not
charity, it profiteth me nothing." But if martyrdom is of no
avail for this reason, because it has not charity, neither does it
profit those who, as Paul says, and Cyprian further sets forth, are
living within the Church without charity in envy and malice; and yet
they can both receive and transmit true baptism. "Salvation," he
says, "is not without the Church." Who says that it is? And
therefore, whatever men have that belongs to the Church, it profits
them nothing towards salvation outside the Church. But it is one
thing not to have, another to have so as to be of no use. He who has
not must be baptized that he may have; but he who has to no avail must
be corrected, that what he has may profit him. Nor is the water in
the baptism of heretics "adulterous,"  because neither is the
creature itself which God made evil, nor is fault to be found with the
words of the gospel in the mouths of any who are astray; but the fault
is theirs in whom there is an adulterous spirit, even though it may
receive the adornment of the sacrament from a lawful spouse. Baptism
therefore can "be common to us, and the heretics,"  just as the
gospel can be common to us, whatever difference there may be between
our faith and their error,--whether they think otherwise than the
truth about the Father, or the Son, or the Holy Spirit; or, being cut
away from unity, do not gather with Christ, but scatter abroad, 
--seeing that the sacrament of baptism can be common to us, if we are
the wheat of the Lord, with the covetous within the Church, and with
robbers, and drunkards, and other pestilent persons of the same sort,
of whom it is said, "They shall not inherit the kingdom of God,"
 and yet the vices by which they are separated from the kingdom
of God are not shared by us.
 Cypr. Ep. lxxiii. 21.
 1 Cor. xiii. 3.
 Cyp. l.c.
 Cyp. l.c.
 Cyp. l.c.
 Matt. xii. 30.
 1 Cor. vi. 10.
Chapter 18.--26. Nor indeed, is it of heresies alone that the apostle
says "that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of
God." But it may be worth while to look for a moment at the things
which he groups together. "The works of the flesh," he says "are
manifest, which are these; fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness,
idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife,
seditions, heresies, envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and
such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in
time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the
kingdom of God." Let us suppose some one, therefore, chaste,
continent, free from covetousness, no idolater, hospitable, charitable
to the needy, no man's enemy, not contentious, patient, quiet, jealous
of none, envying none, sober, frugal, but a heretic; it is of course
clear to all that for this one fault only, that he is a heretic, he
will fail to inherit the kingdom of God. Let us suppose another, a
fornicator, unclean, lascivious, covetous, or even more openly given
to idolatry, a student of witchcraft, a lover of strife and
contention, envious, hot-tempered, seditious, jealous, drunken, and a
reveller, but a Catholic; can it be that for this sole merit, that he
is a Catholic, he will inherit the kingdom of God, though his deeds
are of the kind of which the apostle thus concludes: "Of the which I
tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which
do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God?" If we say this,
we lead ourselves astray. For the word of God does not lead us
astray, which is neither silent, nor lenient, nor deceptive through
any flattery. Indeed, it speaks to the same effect elsewhere: "For
this ye know, that no whoremonger, nor unclean person, nor covetous
man, which is an idolater, hath any inheritance in the kingdom of
Christ and of God. Let no man deceive you with vain words." 
We have no reason, therefore, to complain of the word of God. It
certainly says, and says openly and freely, that those who live a
wicked life have no part in the kingdom of God.
 Gal. v. 19-21.
 Eph. v. 5, 6.
Chapter 19.--27. Let us therefore not flatter the Catholic who is
hemmed in with all these vices, nor venture, merely because he is a
Catholic Christian, to promise him the impunity which holy Scripture
does not promise him; nor, if he has any one of the faults above
mentioned, ought we to promise him a partnership in that heavenly
land. For, in writing to the Corinthians, the apostle enumerates the
several sins, under each of which it is implicitly understood that it
shall not inherit the kingdom of God: "Be not deceived," he says:
"neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate,
nor abusers of themselves with mankind, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor
drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom
of God." He does not say, those who possess all these vices
together shall not inherit the kingdom of God; but neither these nor
those: so that, as each is named, you may understand that no one of
them shall inherit the kingdom of God. As, therefore, heretics shall
not possess the kingdom of God, so the covetous shall not inherit the
kingdom of God. Nor can we indeed doubt that the punishments
themselves, with which they shall be tortured who do not inherit the
kingdom of God, will vary in proportion to the difference of their
offences, and that some will be more severe than others; so that in
the eternal fire itself there will be different tortures in the
punishments, corresponding to the different weights of guilt. For
indeed it was not idly that the Lord said, "It shall be more tolerable
for the land of Sodom in the day of judgment than for thee." 
But yet, so far as failing to inherit the kingdom of God is concerned,
it is just as certain, if you choose any one of the less heinous of
these vices, as if you choose more than one, or some one which you saw
was more atrocious; and because those will inherit the kingdom of God
whom the Judge shall set on His right hand, and for those who shall
not be found worthy to be set at the right hand nothing will remain
but to be at the left, no other announcement is left for them to hear
like goats from the mouth of the Shepherd, except, "Depart into
everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels;" 
though in that fire, as I said before, it may be that different
punishments will be awarded corresponding to the difference of the
 1 Cor. vi. 9, 10.
 Matt. xi. 24.
 Matt. xxv. 41.
Chapter 20.--28. But on the question whether we ought to prefer a
Catholic of the most abandoned character to a heretic in whose life,
except that he is a heretic, men can find nothing to blame, I do not
venture to give a hasty judgment. But if any one says, because he is
a heretic, he cannot be this only without other vices also
following,--for he is carnal and natural, and therefore must be also
envious, and hot-tempered, and jealous, and hostile to truth itself,
and utterly estranged from it,--let him fairly understand, that of
those other faults of which he is supposed to have chosen some one
less flagrant, a single one cannot exist by itself in any man, because
he in turn is carnal and natural; as, to take the case of drunkenness,
which people have now become accustomed to talk of not only without
horror, but with some degree of merriment, can it possibly exist alone
in any one in whom it is found? For what drunkard is not also
contentious, and hot-tempered, and jealous, and at variance with all
soundness of counsel, and at grievous enmity with those who rebuke
him? Further, it is not easy for him to avoid being a fornicator and
adulterer, though he may be no heretic; just as a heretic may be no
drunkard, nor adulterer, nor fornicator, nor lascivious, nor a lover
of money, or given to witchcraft, and cannot well be all these
together. Nor indeed is any one vice followed by all the rest.
Supposing, therefore, two men,--one a Catholic with all these vices,
the other a heretic free from all from which a heretic can be
free,--although they do not both contend against the faith, and yet
each lives contrary to the faith, and each is deceived by a vain hope,
and each is far removed from charity of spirit, and therefore each is
severed from connection with the body of the one dove; why do we
recognise in one of them the sacrament of Christ, and not in the
other, as though it belonged to this or that man, whilst really it is
the same in both, and belongs to God alone, and is good even in the
worst of men? And if of the men who have it, one is worse than
another, it does not follow that the sacrament which they have is
worse in the one than in the other, seeing that neither in the case of
two bad Catholics, if one be worse than the other, does he possess a
worse baptism, nor, if one of them be good and another bad, is baptism
bad in the bad one and good in the good one; but it is good in both.
Just as the light of the sun, or even of a lamp, is certainly not less
brilliant when displayed to bad eyes than when seen by better ones;
but it is the same in the case of both, although it either cheers or
hurts them differently according to the difference of their powers.
Chapter 21.--29. With regard to the objection brought against
Cyprian, that the catechumens who were seized in martyrdom, and slain
for Christ's name's sake, received a crown even without baptism, I do
not quite see what it has to do with the matter, unless, indeed, they
urged that heretics could much more be admitted with baptism to
Christ's kingdom, to which catechumens were admitted without it, since
He Himself has said, "Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit,
he cannot enter into the kingdom of God." Now, in this matter
I do not hesitate for a moment to place the Catholic catechumen, who
is burning with love for God, before the baptized heretic; nor yet do
we thereby do dishonor to the sacrament of baptism which the latter
has already received, the former not as yet; nor do we consider that
the sacrament of the catechumen  is to be preferred to the
sacrament of baptism, when we acknowledge that some catechumens are
better and more faithful than some baptized persons. For the
centurion Cornelius, before baptism, was better than Simon, who had
been baptized. For Cornelius, even before his baptism, was filled
with the Holy Spirit;  Simon, even after baptism, was puffed up
with an unclean spirit. Cornelius, however, would have been
convicted of contempt for so holy a sacrament, if, even after he had
received the Holy Ghost, he had refused to be baptized. But when he
was baptized, he received in no wise a better sacrament than Simon;
but the different merits of the men were made manifest under the equal
holiness of the same sacrament--so true is it that the good or ill
deserving of the recipient does not increase or diminish the holiness
of baptism. But as baptism is wanting to a good catechumen to his
receiving the kingdom of heaven, so true conversion is wanting to a
bad man though baptized. For He who said, "Except a man be born of
water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God,"
said also Himself, "except your righteousness shall exceed the
righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case enter
into the kingdom of heaven." For that the righteousness of
the catechumens might not feel secure, it is written, "Except a man be
born again of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the
kingdom of God." And again, that the unrighteousness of the baptized
might not feel secure because they had received baptism, it is
written, "Except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of
the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case enter into the kingdom
of heaven." The one were too little without the other; the two make
perfect the heir of that inheritance. As, then, we ought not to
depreciate a man's righteousness, which begins to exist before he is
joined to the Church, as the righteousness of Cornelius began to exist
before he was in the body of Christian men,--which righteousness was
not thought worthless, or the angel would not have said to him, "Thy
prayers and thine alms are come up as a memorial before God;" nor did
it yet suffice for his obtaining the kingdom of heaven, or he would
not have been told to send to Peter,  --so neither ought we to
depreciate the sacrament of baptism, even though it has been received
outside the Church. But since it is of no avail for salvation unless
he who has baptism indeed in full perfection be incorporated into the
Church, correcting also his own depravity, let us therefore correct
the error of the heretics, that we may recognize what in them is not
their own but Christ's.
 John iii. 5.
 Another reading, of less authority, is, "Aut catechumeno
sacramentum baptismi præferendum putamus." This does not suit the
sense of the passage, and probably sprung from want of knowledge of
the meaning of the "catechumen's sacrament." It is mentioned in the
Council of Carthage, A.D. 397, as "the sacrament of salt" (cap. 5).
Augustin (de Peccat. Meritis, ii. c. 26), says that "what the
catechumens receive, though it be not the body of Christ, yet is holy,
more holy than the food whereby our bodies are sustained, because it
is a sacrament."--Cp. de Catech. Rudibus, c. 26 [Bened.]. It appears
to have been only a taste of salt, given them as the emblem of purity
and incorruption. See Bingham, Orig. Eccles. Book x. c. ii. 16.
 Acts x. 44.
 Acts viii. 13, 18, 19.
 Matt. v. 20.
 Acts x. 4, 5.
Chapter 22.--30. That the place of baptism is sometimes supplied by
martyrdom is supported by an argument by no means trivial, which the
blessed Cyprian adduces  from the thief, to whom, though he was
not baptized, it was yet said, "To-day shall thou be with me in
Paradise." On considering which, again and again, I find that
not only martyrdom for the sake of Christ may supply what was wanting
of baptism, but also faith and conversion of heart, if recourse may
not be had to the celebration of the mystery of baptism for want of
time. For neither was that thief crucified for the name of
Christ, but as the reward of his own deeds; nor did he suffer because
he believed, but he believed while suffering. It was shown,
therefore, in the case of that thief, how great is the power, even
without the visible sacrament of baptism, of what the apostle says,
"With the heart man believeth unto righteousness, and with the mouth
confession is made unto salvation." But the want is supplied
invisibly only when the administration of baptism is prevented, not by
contempt for religion, but by the necessity of the moment. For much
more in the case of Cornelius and his friends, than in the case of
that robber, might it seem superfluous that they should also be
baptized with water, seeing that in them the gift of the Holy Spirit,
which, according to the testimony of holy Scripture, was received by
other men only after baptism, had made itself manifest by every
unmistakable sign appropriate to those times when they spoke with
tongues. Yet they were baptized, and for this action we have the
authority of an apostle as the warrant. So far ought all of us to be
from being induced by any imperfection in the inner man, if it so
happen that before baptism a person has advanced, through the workings
of a pious heart, to spiritual understanding, to despise a sacrament
which is applied to the body by the hands of the minister, but which
is God's own means for working spiritually a man's dedication to
Himself. Nor do I conceive that the function of baptizing was
assigned to John, so that it should be called John's baptism, for any
other reason except that the Lord Himself, who had appointed it, in
not disdaining to receive the baptism of His servant,  might
consecrate the path of humility, and show most plainly by such an
action how high a value was to be placed on His own baptism, with
which He Himself was afterwards to baptize. For He saw, like an
excellent physician of eternal salvation, that overweening pride would
be found in some, who, having made such progress in the understanding
of the truth and in uprightness of character that they would not
hesitate to place themselves, both in life and knowledge, above many
that were baptized, would think it was unnecessary for them to be
baptized, since they felt that they had attained a frame of mind to
which many that were baptized were still only endeavoring to raise
 Cypr. Ep. lxxiii. 22.
 Luke xxiii. 43.
 In Retract. ii. 18, Augustin expresses a doubt whether the
thief may not have been baptized.
 Rom. x. 10.
 Matt. iii. 6, 13.
Chapter 23.--31. But what is the precise value of the sanctification
of the sacrament (which that thief did not receive, not from any want
of will on his part, but because it was unavoidably omitted) and what
is the effect on a man of its material application, it is not easy to
say. Still, had it not been of the greatest value, the Lord would not
have received the baptism of a servant. But since we must look at it
in itself, without entering upon the question of the salvation of the
recipient, which it is intended to work, it shows clearly enough that
both in the bad, and in those who renounce the world in word and not
in deed, it is itself complete, though they cannot receive salvation
unless they amend their lives. But as in the thief, to whom the
material administration of the sacrament was necessarily wanting, the
salvation was complete, because it was spiritually present through his
piety, so, when the sacrament itself is present, salvation is
complete, if what the thief possessed be unavoidably wanting. And
this is the firm tradition of the universal Church, in respect of the
baptism of infants, who certainly are as yet unable "with the heart to
believe unto righteousness, and with the mouth to make confession unto
salvation," as the thief could do; nay, who even, by crying and
moaning when the mystery is performed upon them, raise their voices in
opposition to the mysterious words, and yet no Christian will say that
they are baptized to no purpose.
Chapter 24.--32. And if any one seek for divine authority in this
matter, though what is held by the whole Church, and that not as
instituted by Councils, but as a matter of invariable custom, is
rightly held to have been handed down by apostolical authority, still
we can form a true conjecture of the value of the sacrament of baptism
in the case of infants, from the parallel of circumcision, which was
received by God's earlier people, and before receiving which Abraham
was justified, as Cornelius also was enriched with the gift of the
Holy Spirit before he was baptized. Yet the apostle says of Abraham
himself, that "he received the sign of circumcision, a seal of the
righteousness of the faith," having already believed in his heart, so
that "it was counted unto him for righteousness." Why,
therefore, was it commanded him that he should circumcise every male
child in order on the eighth day,  though it could not yet
believe with the heart, that it should be counted unto it for
righteousness, because the sacrament in itself was of great avail?
And this was made manifest by the message of an angel in the case of
Moses' son; for when he was carried by his mother, being yet
uncircumcised, it was required, by manifest present peril, that he
should be circumcised,  and when this was done, the danger of
death was removed. As therefore in Abraham the justification of faith
came first, and circumcision was added afterwards as the seal of
faith; so in Cornelius the spiritual sanctification came first in the
gift of the Holy Spirit, and the sacrament of regeneration was added
afterwards in the laver of baptism. And as in Isaac, who was
circumcised on the eighth day after his birth, the seal of this
righteousness of faith was given first, and afterwards, as he imitated
the faith of his father, the righteousness itself followed as he grew
up, of which the seal had been given before when he was an infant; so
in infants, who are baptized, the sacrament of regeneration is given
first, and if they maintain a Christian piety, conversion also in the
heart will follow, of which the mysterious sign had gone before in the
outward body. And as in the thief the gracious goodness of the
Almighty supplied what had been wanting in the sacrament of baptism,
because it had been missing not from pride or contempt, but from want
of opportunity; so in infants who die baptized, we must believe that
the same grace of the Almighty supplies the want, that, not from
perversity of will, but from insufficiency of age, they can neither
believe with the heart unto righteousness, nor make confession with
the mouth unto salvation. Therefore, when others take the vows for
them, that the celebration of the sacrament may be complete in their
behalf, it is unquestionably of avail for their dedication to God,
because they cannot answer for themselves. But if another were to
answer for one who could answer for himself, it would not be of the
same avail. In accordance with which rule, we find in the gospel what
strikes every one as natural when he reads it, "He is of age, he shall
speak for himself." 
 Rom. iv. 11, 3.
 Gen. xvii. 9-14.
 Ex. iv. 24-26.
 John ix. 21.
Chapter 25.--33. By all these considerations it is proved that the
sacrament of baptism is one thing, the conversion of the heart
another; but that man's salvation is made complete through the two
together. Nor are we to suppose that, if one of these be wanting, it
necessarily follows that the other is wanting also; because the
sacrament may exist in the infant without the conversion of the heart;
and this was found to be possible without the sacrament in the case of
the thief, God in either case filling up what was involuntarily
wanting. But when either of these requisites is wanting
intentionally, then the man is responsible for the omission. And
baptism may exist when the conversion of the heart is wanting; but,
with respect to such conversion, it may indeed be found when baptism
has not been received, but never when it has been despised. Nor can
there be said in any way to be a turning of the heart to God when the
sacrament of God is treated with contempt. Therefore we are right in
censuring, anathematizing, abhorring, and abominating the perversity
of heart shown by heretics; yet it does not follow that they have not
the sacrament of the gospel, because they have not what makes it of
avail. Wherefore, when they come to the true faith, and by penitence
seek remission of their sins, we are not flattering or deceiving them,
when we instruct them by heavenly discipline for the kingdom of
heaven, correcting and reforming in them their errors and
perverseness, to the intent that we may by no means do violence to
what is sound in them, nor, because of man's fault, declare that
anything which he may have in him from God is either valueless or
Chapter 26.--34. A few things still remain to be noticed in the
epistle to Jubaianus; but since these will raise the question both of
the past custom of the Church and of the baptism of John, which is
wont to excite no small doubt in those who pay slight attention to a
matter which is sufficiently obvious, seeing that those who had
received the baptism of John were commanded by the apostle to be
baptized again  they are not to be treated in a hasty manner,
and had better be reserved for another book, that the dimensions of
this may not be inconveniently large.
 Acts xix. 3-5.
He examines the last part of the epistle of Cyprian to Jubaianus,
together with his epistle to Quintus, the letter of the African synod
to the Numidian bishops, and Cyprian's epistle to Pompeius.
Chapter 1.--1. We have the testimony of the blessed Cyprian, that the
custom of the Catholic Church is at present retained, when men coming
from the side of heretics or schismatics, if they have received
baptism as consecrated in the words of the gospel, are not baptized
afresh. For he himself proposed to himself the question, and that as
coming from the mouth of brethren either seeking the truth or
contending for the truth. For in the course of the arguments by which
he wished to show that heretics should be baptized again, which we
have sufficiently considered for our present purpose in the former
books, he says: "But some will say, What then will become of those
who in times past, coming to the Church from heresy, were admitted
without baptism?" In this question is involved the shipwreck
of the whole cause of the Donatists, with whom our contest is on this
point. For if those had not really baptism who were thus received on
coming from heretics, and their sins were still upon them, then, when
such men were admitted to communion, either by those who came before
Cyprian or by Cyprian himself, we must acknowledge that one of two
things occurred,--either that the Church perished then and there from
the pollution of communion with such men, or that any one abiding in
unity is not injured by even the notorious sins of other men. But
since they cannot say that the Church then perished through the
contamination arising from communion with those who, as Cyprian says,
were admitted into it without baptism--for otherwise they cannot
maintain the validity of their own origin if the Church then perished,
seeing that the list of consuls proves that more than forty years
elapsed between the martyrdom of Cyprian and the burning of the sacred
books,  from which they took occasion to make a schism,
spreading abroad the smoke of their calumnies,--it therefore is left
for them to acknowledge that the unity of Christ is not polluted by
any such communion, even with known offenders. And, after this
confession, they will be unable to discover any reason which will
justify them in maintaining that they were bound to separate from the
churches of the whole world, which, as we read, were equally founded
by the apostles, seeing that, while the others could not have perished
from any admixture of offenders, of whatsoever kind, they, though they
would not have perished if they had remained in unity with them,
brought destruction on themselves in schism, by separating themselves
from their brethren, and breaking the bond of peace. For the
sacrilege of schism is most clearly evident in them, if they had no
sufficient cause for separation. And it is clear that there was no
sufficient cause for separation, if even the presence of notorious
offenders cannot pollute the good while they abide in unity. But that
the good, abiding in unity, are not polluted even by notorious
offenders, we teach on the testimony of Cyprian, who says that "men in
past times, coming to the Church from heresy, were admitted without
baptism;" and yet, if the wickedness of their sacrilege, which was
still upon them, seeing it had not been purged away by baptism, could
not pollute and destroy the holiness of the Church, it cannot perish
by any infection from wicked men. Wherefore, if they allow that
Cyprian spoke the truth, they are convicted of schism on his
testimony; if they maintain that he does not speak truth, let them not
use his testimony on the question of baptism.
 Cypr. Ep. lxxiii. ad Jubaian. 23.
 See below, Book VII. c. 2, 3.
Chapter 2.--2. But now that we have begun a disputation with a man of
peace like Cyprian, let us go on. For when he had brought an
objection against himself, which he knew was urged by his brethren,
"What then will become of those who in times past, coming to the
Church from heresy, were admitted without baptism? The Lord," he
answers, "is able of His mercy to grant indulgence, and not to
separate from the gifts of His Church those who, being admitted in all
honesty to His Church, have fallen asleep within the Church." 
Well indeed has he assumed that charity can cover the multitude of
sins. But if they really had baptism, and this were not rightly
perceived by those who thought that they should be baptized again,
that error was covered by the charity of unity so long as it
contained, not the discord and spirit of the devil, but merely human
infirmity, until, as the apostle says, "if they were otherwise minded,
the Lord should reveal it to them." But woe unto those who,
being torn asunder from unity by a sacrilegious rupture, either
rebaptize, if baptism exists with both us and them, or do not baptize
at all, if baptism exist in the Catholic Church only. Whether,
therefore, they rebaptize, or fail to baptize, they are not in the
bond of peace; wherefore let them apply a remedy to which they please
of these two wounds. But if we admit to the Church without baptism,
we are of the number of those who, as Cyprian has assumed, may receive
pardon because they preserved unity. But if (as is, I think, already
clear from what has been said in the earlier books) Christian baptism
can preserve its integrity even amid the perversity of heretics, then
even though any in those times did rebaptize, yet without departing
from the bond of unity, they might still attain to pardon in virtue of
that same love of peace, through which Cyprian bears witness that
those admitted even without baptism might obtain that they should not
be separated from the gifts of the Church. Further, if it is true
that with heretics and schismatics the baptism of Christ does not
exist, how much less could the sins of others hurt those who were
fixed in unity, if even men's own sins were forgiven when they came to
it even without baptism! For if, according to Cyprian, the bond of
unity is of such efficacy, how could they be hurt by other men's sins,
who were unwilling to separate themselves from unity, if even the
unbaptized, who wished to come to it from heresy, thereby escaped the
destruction due to their own sins?
 Cypr. Ep. lxxiii. 23.
 Phil. iii. 15.
Chapter. 3.--3. But in what Cyprian adds, saying, "Nor yet because
men once have erred must there be always error, since it rather befits
wise and God-fearing men gladly and unhesitatingly to follow truth,
when it is clearly laid before their eyes, than obstinately and
persistently to fight for heretics against their brethren and their
fellow-priests,"  he is uttering the most perfect truth; and the
man who resists the manifest truth is opposing himself rather than his
neighbors. But, so far as I can judge, it is perfectly clear and
certain, from the many arguments which I have already adduced, that
the baptism of Christ cannot be invalidated even by the perversity of
heretics, when it is given or received among them. But, granting that
it is not yet certain, at any rate no one who has considered what has
been said, even from a hostile point of view, will assert that the
question has been decided the other way. Therefore we are not
striving against manifest truth, but either, as I think, we are
striving in behalf of what is clearly true, or, at any rate, as those
may hold who think that the question has not yet been solved, we are
seeking for the truth. And therefore, if the truth be other than we
think, yet we are receiving those baptized by heretics with the same
honesty of heart with which those received them whom, Cyprian
supposed, in virtue of their cleaving to the unity of the Church, to
be capable of pardon. But if the baptism of Christ, as is indicated
by the many arguments used above, can retain its integrity amid any
defect either of life or faith, whether on the part of those who seem
to be within, and yet do not belong to the members of the one dove or
on the part of those whose severance from her extends to being openly
without, then those who sought its repetition in those former days
deserved the same pardon for their charity in clinging to unity, which
Cyprian thought that those deserved for charity of the same kind whom
he believed to have been admitted without baptism. They therefore
who, without any cause (since, as Cyprian himself shows, the bad
cannot hurt the good in the unity of the Church), have cut themselves
off from the charity which is shown in this unity, have lost all place
of pardon, and whilst they would incur destruction by the very crime
of schism, even though they did not rebaptize those who had been
baptized in the Catholic Church, of how bitter punishment are they
deserving, who are either endeavoring to give to the Catholics who
have it what Cyprian affirms that they themselves have not, or, as is
clear from the facts of the case, are bringing as a charge against the
Catholic Church that she has not what even they themselves possess?
 Cypr. Ep. lxxiii. 23.
Chapter 4.--4. But since now, as I said before, we have begun a
disputation with the epistles of Cyprian, I think that I should not
seem even to him, if he were present, "to be contending obstinately
and persistently in defense of heretics against my brethren and my
fellow-priests," when he learned the powerful reasons which move us to
believe that even among heretics, who are perversely obstinate in
their malignant error, the baptism of Christ is yet in itself most
holy, and most highly to be reverenced. And seeing that he himself,
whose testimony has such weight with us, bears witness that they were
wont in past times to be admitted without a second baptism, I would
have any one, who is induced by Cyprian's arguments to hold it as
certain that heretics ought to be baptized afresh, yet consider that
those who, on account of weight of the arguments on the other side,
are not as yet persuaded that this should be so, hold the same place
as those in past time, who in all honesty admitted men who were
baptized in heresy on the simple correction of their individual error,
and who were capable of salvation with them in virtue of the bond of
unity. And let any one, who is led by the past custom of the Church,
and by the subsequent authority of a plenary Council, and by so many
powerful proofs from holy Scripture, and by much evidence from Cyprian
himself, and by the clear reasoning of truth, to understand that the
baptism of Christ, consecrated in the words of the gospel, cannot be
perverted by the error of any man on earth,--let such an one
understand, that they who then thought otherwise, but yet preserved
their charity, can be saved by the same bond of unity. And herein he
should also understand of those who, in the society of the Church
dispersed throughout the world, could not have been defiled by any
tares, by any chaff, so long as they themselves desired to be fruitful
corn, and who therefore severed themselves from the same bond of unity
without any cause for the divorce, that at any rate, whichever of the
two opinions be true,--that which Cyprian then held, or that which was
maintained by the universal voice of the Catholic Church, which
Cyprian did not abandon,--in either case they, having most openly
placed themselves outside in the plain sacrilege of schism, cannot
possibly be saved, and all that they possess of the holy sacraments,
and of the free gifts of the one legitimate Bridegroom, is of avail,
while they continue what they are, for their confusion rather than the
salvation of their souls.
Chapter 5.--5. Wherefore, even if heretics should be truly anxious to
correct their error and come to the Church, for the very reason that
they believed that they had no baptism unless they received it in the
Church, even under these circumstances we should not be bound to yield
to their desire for the repetition of baptism; but rather they should
be taught, on the one hand, that baptism, though perfect in itself,
could in no way profit their perversity if they would not submit to be
corrected; and, on the other hand, that the perfection of baptism
could not be impaired by their perversity, while refusing to be
corrected: and again, that no further perfection is added to baptism
in them because they are submitting to correction; but that, while
they themselves are quitting their iniquity, that which was before
within them to their destruction is now beginning to be of profit for
salvation. For, learning this, they will both recognize the need of
salvation in Catholic unity, and will cease to claim as their own what
is really Christ's, and will not confound the sacrament of truth,
although existing in themselves, with their own individual error.
6. To this we may add a further reason, that men, by a sort of hidden
inspiration from heaven, shrink from any one who for the second time
receives baptism which he had already received in any quarter
whatsoever, insomuch that the very heretics themselves, when their
arguments start with that subject, rub their forehead in perplexity,
and almost all their laity, even those who have grown old in their
body, and have conceived an obstinate animosity against the Catholic
Church, confess that this one point in their system displeases them;
and many who, for the sake of gaining some secular advantage, or
avoiding some disadvantage, wish to secede to them, strive with many
secret efforts that they may have granted to them, as a peculiar and
individual privilege, that they should not be rebaptized; and some,
who are led to place credence in their other vain delusions and false
accusations against the Catholic Church, are recalled to unity by this
one consideration, that they are unwilling to associate with them lest
they should be compelled to be rebaptized. And the Donatists, through
fear of this feeling, which has so thorough possession of all men's
hearts, have consented to acknowledge the baptism which was conferred
among the followers of Maximianus, whom they had condemned, and so to
cut short their own tongues and close their mouths, in preference to
baptizing again so many men of the people of Musti, and Assuræ, and
other districts, whom they received with Felicianus and Prætextatus,
and the others who had been condemned by them and afterwards returned
Chapter 6.--7. For when this is done occasionally in the case of
individuals, at great intervals of time and space, the enormity of the
deed is not equally felt; but if all were suddenly to be brought
together who had been baptized in course of time by the aforesaid
followers of Maximianus, either under pressure of the peril of death
or at their Easter solemnities, and it were told them that they must
be baptized again, because what they had already received in the
sacrilege of schism was null and void, they might indeed say what
obstinate perseverance in their error would compel them to say, that
they might hide the rigor and iciness of their hardness under any kind
of false shade of consistency against the warmth of truth. But in
fact, because the party of Maximianus could not bear this, and because
the very men who would have to enforce it could not endure what must
needs have been done in the case of so many men at once, especially as
those very men would be rebaptizing them in the party of Primianus who
had already baptized them in the party of Maximianus, for these
reasons their baptism was received, and the pride of the Donatists was
cut short. And this course they would certainly not have chosen to
adopt, had they not thought that more harm would have been done to
their cause by the offense men would have taken at the repetition of
the baptism, than by the reputation lost in abandoning their defense.
And this I would not say with any idea that we ought to be restrained
by consideration of human feelings, if the truth compelled those who
came from heretics to be baptized afresh. But because the holy
Cyprian says, "that heretics might have been all the more impelled to
the necessity of coming over, if only they were to be rebaptized in
the Catholic Church,"  on this account I have wished to place on
record the intensity of the repugnance to this act which is seated
deeply in the heart of nearly every one,--a repugnance which I can
believe was inspired by God Himself, that the Church might be
fortified by the instinct of repugnance against any possible arguments
which the weak cannot dispel.
 Cypr. Ep. lxxiii. 24.
Chapter 7.--8. Truly, when I look at the actual words of Cyprian, I
am warned to say some things which are very necessary for the solution
of this question. "For if they were to see," he says, "that it was
settled and established by our formal decision and vote, that the
baptism with which they are baptized in heresy is considered just and
lawful, they will think that they are in just and lawful possession of
the Church also, and all its other gifts." He does not say
"that they will think they are in possession," but "in just and lawful
possession of the gifts of the Church." But we say that we cannot
allow that they are in just and lawful possession of baptism. That
they are in possession of it we cannot deny, when we recognize the
sacrament of the Lord in the words of the gospel. They have therefore
lawful baptism, but they do not have it lawfully. For whosoever has
it both in Catholic unity, and living worthily of it, both has lawful
baptism and has it lawfully; but whosoever has it either within the
Catholic Church itself, as chaff mixed with the wheat, or outside, as
chaff carried away by the wind, has indeed lawful baptism, but not
lawfully. For he has it as he uses it. But the man does not use it
lawfully who uses it against the law,--which every one does, who,
being baptized, yet leads an abandoned life, whether inside or without
Chapter 8.--9. Wherefore, as the apostle said of the law, "The law is
good, if a man use it lawfully,"  so we may fairly say of
baptism, Baptism is good, if a man use it lawfully. And as they who
used the law unlawfully could not in that case cause that it should
not be in itself good, or make it null and void, so any one who uses
baptism unlawfully, either because he lives in heresy, or because he
lives the worst of lives, yet cannot cause that the baptism should be
otherwise than good, or altogether null and void. And so, when he is
converted either to Catholic unity, or to a mode of living worthy of
so great a sacrament, he begins to have not another and a lawful
baptism, but that same baptism in a lawful manner. Nor does the
remission of irrevocable sins follow on baptism, unless a man not only
have lawful baptism, but have it lawfully; and yet it does not follow
that if a man have it not lawfully, so that his sins are either not
remitted, or, being remitted, are brought on him again, therefore the
sacrament of baptism should be in the baptized person either bad or
null and void. For as Judas, to whom the Lord gave a morsel, gave a
place within himself of the devil, not by receiving what was bad, but
by receiving it badly,  so each person, on receiving the
sacrament of the Lord, does not cause that it is bad because he is bad
himself, or that he has received nothing because he has not received
it to salvation. For it was none the less the body of the Lord and
the blood of the Lord, even in those to whom the apostle said, "He
that eateth unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself."
 Let the heretics therefore seek in the Catholic Church not
what they have, but what they have not,--that is, the end of the
commandment, without which many holy things may be possessed, but they
cannot profit. "Now, the end of the commandment is charity out of a
pure heart, and of a good conscience, and of faith unfeigned." 
Let them therefore hasten to the unity and truth of the Catholic
Church, not that they may have the sacrament of washing, if they have
been already bathed in it, although in heresy, but that they may have
it to their health.
 1 Tim. i. 8.
 John xiii. 27.
 1 Cor. xi. 29.
 1 Tim. i. 5.
Chapter 9.--10. Now we must see what is said of the baptism of John.
For "we read in the Acts of the Apostles, that those who had already
been baptized with the baptism of John were yet baptized by Paul,"
 simply because the baptism of John was not the baptism of
Christ, but a baptism allowed by Christ to John, so as to be called
especially John's baptism; as the same John says, "A man can receive
nothing, except it be given him from heaven." And that he
might not possibly seem to receive this from God the Father in such
wise as not to receive it from the Son, speaking presently of Christ
Himself, he says, "Of His fullness have all we received." But
by the grace of a certain dispensation John received this, which was
to last not for long, but only long enough to prepare for the Lord the
way in which he must needs be the forerunner. And as our Lord was
presently to enter on this way with all humility, and to lead those
who humbly followed Him to perfection, as He washed the feet of His
servants,  so was He willing to be baptized with the baptism of
a servant. For as He set Himself to minister to the feet of
those whose guide He was Himself, so He submitted Himself to the gift
of John which He Himself had given, that all might understand what
sacrilegious arrogance they would show in despising the baptism which
they ought each of them to receive from the Lord, when the Lord
Himself accepted what He Himself had bestowed upon a servant, that he
might give it as his own; and that when John, than whom no greater had
arisen among them that are born of women,  bore such testimony
to Christ, as to confess that he was not worthy to unloose the latchet
of His shoe,  Christ might both, by receiving his baptism, be
found to be the humblest among men, and, by taking away the place for
the baptism of John, be believed to be the most high God, at once the
teacher of humility and the giver of exaltation.
11. For to none of the prophets, to no one at all in holy Scripture,
do we read that it was granted to baptize in the water of repentance
for the remission of sins, as it was granted to John; that, causing
the hearts of the people to hang upon him through this marvellous
grace, he might prepare in them the way for Him whom he declared to be
so infinitely greater than himself. But the Lord Jesus Christ
cleanses His Church by such a baptism that on receiving it no other is
required; while John gave a first washing with such a baptism that on
receiving it there was further need of the baptism of the Lord,--not
that the first baptism should be repeated, but that the baptism of
Christ, for whom he was preparing the way, might be further bestowed
on those who had received the baptism of John. For if Christ's
humility were not to be commended to our notice, neither would there
be any need of the baptism of John; again, if the end were in John,
after his baptism there would be no need of the baptism of Christ.
But because "Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every
one that believeth,"  it was shown by John to whom men should
go, and in whom, when they had reached Him, they should rest. The
same, John, therefore, set forth both the exalted nature of the Lord,
when he placed Him far before himself, and His humility, when he
baptized Him as the lowest of the people. But if John had baptized
Christ alone, he would be thought to have been the dispenser of a
better baptism, in that with which Christ alone was baptized, than the
baptism of Christ with which Christians are baptized; and again, if
all ought to be baptized first with the baptism of John, and then with
that of Christ, the baptism of Christ would deservedly seem to be
lacking in fullness and perfection, as not sufficing for salvation.
Wherefore the Lord was baptized with the baptism of John, that He
might bend the proud necks of men to His own health-giving baptism;
and He was not alone baptized with it, lest He should show His own to
be inferior to this, with which none but He Himself had deserved to be
baptized; and He did not allow it to continue longer, lest the one
baptism with which He baptizes might seem to need the other to precede
 Cypr. Ep. lxxiii. 24; Acts xix. 3-5.
 John iii. 27.
 John i. 16.
 John xiii. 4, 5.
 Matt. iii. 13.
 Matt. xi. 11.
 John i. 27.
 Rom. x. 4.
Chapter 10.--12. I ask, therefore, if sins were remitted by the
baptism of John, what more could the baptism of Christ confer on those
whom the Apostle Paul desired to be baptized with the baptism of
Christ after they had received the baptism of John? But if sins were
not remitted by the baptism of John, were those men in the days of
Cyprian better than John, of whom he says himself that they "used to
seize on estates by treacherous frauds, and increase their gains by
accumulated usuries,"  through whose, administration of baptism
the remission of sins was yet conferred? Or was it because they were
contained within the unity of the Church? What then? Was John not
contained within that unity, the friend of the Bridegroom, the
preparer of the way of the Lord, the baptizer of the Lord Himself?
Who will be mad enough to assert this? Wherefore, although my belief
is that John so baptized with the water of repentance for the
remission of sins, that those who were baptized by him received the
expectation of the remission of their sins, the actual remission
taking place in the baptism of the Lord,--just as the resurrection
which is expected at the last day is fulfilled in hope in us, as the
apostle says, that "He hath raised us up together, and made us sit
together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus;"  and again, "For
we are saved by hope;"  or as again John himself, while he says,
"I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance, for the remission of
your sins,"  yet says, on seeing our Lord, "Behold the Lamb of
God, which taketh away the sin of the world,"  --nevertheless I
am not disposed to contend vehemently against any one who maintains
that sins were remitted even in the baptism of John, but that some
fuller sanctification was conferred by the baptism of Christ on those
whom Paul ordered to be baptized anew. 
 Cypr. Serm. de Lapsis, c. vi.
 Eph. ii. 6.
 Rom. viii. 24.
 Matt. iii. 11.
 John i. 29.
 Acts xix. 3-5.
Chapter 11.--13. For we must look at the point which especially
concerns the matter before us (whatever be the nature of the baptism
of John, since it is clear that he belongs to the unity of Christ),
viz., what is the reason for which it was right that men should be
baptized again after receiving the baptism of the holy John, and why
they ought not to be baptized again after receiving the baptism of the
covetous bishops. For no one denies that in the Lord's field John was
as wheat, bearing an hundred-fold, if that be the highest rate of
increase; also no one doubts that covetousness, which is idolatry, is
reckoned in the Lord's harvest among the chaff. Why then is a man
baptized again after receiving baptism from the wheat, and not after
receiving it from the chaff? If it was because he was better than
John that Paul baptized after John, why did not also Cyprian baptize
after his usurious colleagues, than whom he was better beyond all
comparison? If it was because they were in unity with him that he did
not baptize after such colleagues, neither ought Paul to have baptized
after John, because they were joined together in the same unity. Can
it be that defrauders and extortioners belong to the members of that
one dove, and that he does not belong to it to whom the full power of
the Lord Jesus Christ was shown by the appearance of the Holy Spirit
in the form of a dove? Truly he belongs most closely to it;
but the others, who must be separated from it either by the occasion
of some scandal, or by the winnowing at the last day, do not by any
means belong to it, and yet baptism was repeated after John and not
after them. What then is the cause, except that the baptism which
Paul ordered them to receive was not the same as that which was given
at the hands of John? And so in the same unity of the Church, the
baptism of Christ cannot be repeated though it be given by an usurious
minister; but those who receive the baptism of John, even from the
hands of John Himself, ought to be afterwards baptized with the
baptism of Christ.
 Matt. iii. 16; John i. 33.
Chapter 12.--14. Accordingly, I too might use the words of the
blessed Cyprian to turn the hearts of those that hear me to the
consideration of something truly marvellous, if I were to say "that
John, who was accounted greater among the prophets,--he who was filled
with divine grace while yet in his mother's womb; he who was upheld in
the spirit and power of Elias; who was not the adversary, but a
forerunner and herald of the Lord: who not only foretold our Lord in
words, but also showed Him to the sight; who baptized Christ Himself,
through whom all others are baptized,"  --he was not worthy to
baptize in such wise that those who were baptized by him should not be
baptized again after him; and shall no one think that a man should be
baptized in the Church after he had been baptized by the covetous, by
defrauders, by extortioners, by usurers? Is not the answer ready to
this invidious question, Why do you think this unmeet, as though
either John were dishonored, or the covetous man honored? But His
baptism ought not to be repeated, of whom John says, "The same is He
which baptizeth with the Holy Ghost." For whoever be the
minister by whose hands it is given, it is His baptism of whom it was
said, "The same is He which baptizeth." But neither was the baptism
of John himself repeated, when the Apostle Paul commanded those who
had been baptized by him to be baptized in Christ. For what they had
not received from the friend of the Bridegroom, this it was right that
they should receive from the Bridegroom Himself, of whom that friend
had said, "The same is He which baptizeth with the Holy Ghost."
 Cypr. Ep. lxxiii. 25.
 John i. 33.
Chapter 13.--15. For the Lord Jesus might, if He had so thought fit,
have given the power of His baptism to some one or more of His chief
servants, whom He had already made His friends, such as those to whom
He says, "Henceforth I call you not servants, but friends;" 
that, as Aaron was shown to be the priest by the rod that budded,
 so in His Church, when more and greater miracles are performed,
the ministers of more excellent holiness, and the dispensers of His
mysteries, might be made manifest by some sign, as those who alone
ought to baptize. But if this had been done, then though the power of
baptizing were given them by the Lord, yet it would necessarily be
called their own baptism, as in the case of the baptism of John. And
so Paul gives thanks to God that he baptized none of those men who, as
though forgetting in whose name they had been baptized, were for
dividing themselves into factions under the names of different
individuals. For when baptism is as valid at the hands of a
contemptible man as it was when given by an apostle, it is recognized
as the baptism neither of this man nor of that, but of Christ; as John
bears witness that he learned, in the case of the Lord Himself,
through the appearance of the dove. For in what other respect he
said, "And I knew Him not," I cannot clearly see. For if he had not
known Him in any sense, he could not have said to Him when He came to
his baptism, "I have need to be baptized of Thee." What is
it, therefore, that he says, "I saw the Spirit descending from heaven
like a dove, and it abode upon Him. And I knew Him not: but He that
sent me to baptizewith water, the same said unto me, Upon whom thou
shall see the Spirit descending, and remaining on Him, the same is He
which baptizeth with the Holy Ghost?" The dove clearly
descended on Him after He was baptized. But while He was yet coming
to be baptized, John had said, "I have need to be baptized of Thee."
He therefore already knew Him. What does he therefore mean by the
words, "I knew Him not: but He that sent me to baptize with water,
the same said unto me, Upon whom thou shalt see the Spirit descending,
and remaining on Him, the same is He which baptizeth with the Holy
Ghost," since this took place after He was baptized, unless it were
that he knew Him in respect of certain attributes, and in respect of
others knew Him not? He knew Him, indeed, as the Son of God, the
Bridegroom, of whose fullness all should receive; but whereas of His
fullness he himself had so received the power of baptizing that it
should be called the baptism of John, he did not know whether He would
so give it to others also, or whether He would have His own baptism in
such wise, that at whosesoever hands it was given, whether by a man
that brought forth fruit a hundredfold, or sixtyfold, or thirtyfold,
whether by the wheat or by the chaff, it should be known to be of Him
alone; and this he learned through the Spirit descending like a dove,
and abiding on Him.
 John xv. 15.
 Num. xvii. 8.
 1 Cor. i. 12-15.
 Matt. iii. 14.
 John i. 32, 33.
Chapter 14.--16. Accordingly we find the apostles using the
expressions, "My glorying,"  though it was certainly in the
Lord; and "Mine office,"  and "My knowledge,"  and "My
gospel,"  although it was confessedly bestowed and given by the
Lord; but no one of them ever once said, "My baptism." For neither is
the glorying of all of them equal, nor do they all minister with equal
powers, nor are they all endowed with equal knowledge, and in
preaching the gospel one works more forcibly than another, and so one
may be said to be more learned than another in the doctrine of
salvation itself; but one cannot be said to be more or less baptized
than another, whether he be baptized by a greater or a less worthy
minister. So when "the works of the flesh are manifest, which are
these, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousnness, idolatry,
witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, strife, seditions, heresies,
envyings, drunkenness, revellings, and such like;"  if it be
strange that it should be said, "Men were baptized after John, and are
not baptized after heretics," why is it not equally strange that it
should be said, "Men were baptized after John, and are not baptized
after the envious," seeing that Cyprian himself bears witness in his
epistle concerning envy and malignity that the covetous are of the
party of the devil, and Cyprian himself makes it manifest from the
words of the Apostle Paul, as we have shown above, that in the time of
the apostles themselves there were envious persons in the Church of
Christ among the very preachers of the name of Christ?
 1 Cor. ix. 15.
 Rom. xi. 13.
 Eph. iii. 4.
 2 Tim. ii. 8.
 Gal. v. 19-21.
Chapter 15.--17. That therefore the baptism of John was not the same
as the baptism of Christ, has, I think, been shown with sufficient
clearness; and therefore no argument can be drawn from it that baptism
should be repeated after heretics because it was repeated after John:
since John was not a heretic, and could have a baptism, which, though
granted by Christ, was yet not the very baptism of Christ, seeing that
he had the love of Christ; while a heretic can have at once the
baptism of Christ and the perversity of the devil, as another within
the Church may have at once the baptism of Christ and the envy of the
18. But it will be urged that baptism after a heretic is much more
required, because John was not a heretic, and yet baptism was repeated
after him. On this principle, a man may say, much more must we
rebaptize after a drunkard, because John was sober, and yet baptism
was repeated after him. And we shall have no answer to make to such a
man, save that the baptism of Christ was given to those who were
baptized by John, because they had it not; but where men have the
baptism of Christ, no iniquity on their part can possibly effect that
the baptism of Christ should fail to be in them.
19. It is not therefore true that "by baptizing first, the heretic
obtains the right of baptism;"  but because he did not baptize
with his own baptism, and though he did not possess the right of
baptizing, yet that which he gave is Christ's, and he who received it
is Christ's. For many things are given wrongfully and yet they are
not therefore said to be non-existent or not given at all. For
neither does he who renounces the world in word only and not in deed
receive baptism lawfully, and yet he does receive it. For both
Cyprian records that there were such men in the Church in his day, and
we ourselves experience and lament the fact.
20. But it is strange in what sense it can be said that "baptism and
the Church cannot in any way be separated and detached from one
another." For if baptism remains inseparably in him who is
baptized, how can it be that he can be separated from the Church, and
baptism cannot? But it is clear that baptism does remain inseparably
in the baptized person; because into whatever depth of evil, and into
whatever fearful whirlpool of sin the baptized person may fall, even
to the ruin of apostasy, he yet is not bereft of his baptism. And
therefore, if through repentance he returns, it is not given again,
because it is judged that he could not have been bereft of it. But
who can ever doubt that a baptized person can be separated from the
Church? For hence all the heresies have proceeded which deceive by
the use of Christian terms.
 Cypr. Ep. lxxiii. 25.
Chapter 16.--Wherefore, since it is manifest that the baptism remains
in the baptized person when he is separated from the Church, the
baptism which is in him is certainly separated with him. And
therefore not all who retain the baptism retain the Church, just as
not all who retain the Church retain eternal life. Or if we say that
only those retain the Church who observe the commandments of God, we
at once concede that there are many who retain baptism, and do not
retain the Church.
21. Therefore the heretic is not "the first to seize baptism," since
he has received it from the Church. Nor, though he seceded, could
baptism have been lost by him whom we assert no longer to retain the
Church, and yet allow to retain baptism. Nor does any one "yield his
birthright, and give it to a heretic,"  because he says that he
took away with him what he could not give lawfully, but what would yet
be according to law when given; or that he no longer has lawfully what
yet is in accordance with law in his possession. But the birthright
rests only in a holy conversation and good life, to which all belong
of whom that bride consists as her members which has no spot or
wrinkle,  or that dove that groans amid the wickedness of the
many crows,--unless it be that, while Esau lost his birthright from
his lust after a mess of pottage,  we are yet to hold that it is
retained by defrauders, robbers, usurers, envious persons, drunkards
and the like, over whose existence in the Church of his time Cyprian
groaned in his epistles. Wherefore, either it is not the same thing
to retain the Church and to retain the birthright in divine things,
or, if every one who retains the Church also retains the birthright,
then all those wicked ones do not retain the Church who yet both seem
and are allowed by every one of us to give baptism within the Church;
for no one, save the man who is wholly ignorant of sacred things,
would say that they retain the birthright in sacred things.
 Cypr. Ep. lxxiii. 25.
 Eph. v. 27. Cp. Aug. Retract. ii. 18, quoted above, I. 17, 26.
 Gen. xxv. 29-34.
Chapter 17.--22. But, having considered and handled all these points,
we have now come to that peaceful utterance of Cyprian at the end of
the epistle, with which I am never sated, though I read and re-read it
again and again,--so great is the pleasantness of brotherly love which
breathes forth from it, so great the sweetness of charity in which it
abounds. "These things," he says, "we have written unto you, dearest
brother, shortly, according to our poor ability, prescribing to or
prejudging no one, lest each bishop should not do what he thinks
right, in the free exercise of his own will. We, so far as in us
lies, do not contend on the subject of heretics with our colleagues
and fellow-bishops, with whom we maintain concord and peace in the
Lord; especially as the apostle also says, `If any man seem to be
contentious, we have no such custom, neither the churches of God.'
We observe patiently and gently charity of spirit, the honor
of our brotherhood, the bond of faith, the harmony of the priesthood.
For this reason also, to the best of our poor ability, by the
permission and the inspiration of God we have written this treatise on
`The Good of Patience,' which we have sent to you in consideration of
our mutual love." 
23. There are many things to be considered in these words, wherein
the brightness of Christian charity shines forth in this man, who
"loved the beauty of the Lord's house, and the place of the tabernacle
of His habitation." First, that he did not conceal what he
felt; then, that he set it forth so gently and peacefully, in that he
maintained the peace of the Church with those who thought otherwise,
because he understood how great healthfulness was bound up in the bond
of peace, loving it so much, and maintaining it with sobriety, seeing
and feeling that even men who think differently may entertain their
several sentiments with saving charity. For he would not say that he
could maintain divine concord or the peace of the Lord with evil men;
for the good man can observe peace towards wicked men, but he cannot
be united with them in the peace which they have not. Lastly, that
prescribing to no one, and prejudging no one, lest each bishop should
not do what he thinks right in the free exercise of his own will, he
has left for us also, whatsoever we may be, a place for treating
peacefully of those things with him. For he is present, not only in
his letters, but by that very charity which existed in so
extraordinary a degree in him, and which can never die. Longing,
therefore, with the aid of his prayers, to cling to and be in union
with him, if I be not hindered by the unmeetness of my sins, I will
learn if I can through his letters with how great peace and comfort
the Lord administered His Church through him; and, putting on the
bowels of humility through the moving influence of his discourse, if,
in common with the Church at large, I entertain any doctrine more true
than his, I will not prefer my heart to his, even in the point in
which he, though holding different views, was yet not severed from the
Church throughout the world. For in that, when that question was yet
undecided for want of full discussion, though his sentiments differed
from those of many of his colleagues, yet he observed so great
moderation, that he would not mutilate the sacred fellowship of the
Church of God by any stain of schism, a greater strength of excellence
appeared in him than would have been shown if, without that virtue, he
had held views on every point not only true, but coinciding with their
own. Nor should I be acting as he would wish, if I were to pretend to
prefer his talent and his fluency of discourse and copiousness of
learning to the holy Council of all nations, whereat he was assuredly
present through the unity of his spirit, especially as he is now
placed in such full light of truth as to see with perfect certainty
what he was here seeking in the spirit of perfect peace. For out of
that rich abundance he smiles at all that here seems eloquence in us,
as though it were the first essay of infancy; there he sees by what
rule of piety he acted here, that nothing should be dearer in the
Church to him than unity. There, too, with unspeakable delight he
beholds with what prescient and most merciful providence the Lord,
that He might heal our swellings, "chose the foolish things of the
world to confound the wise,"  and, in the ordering of the
members of His Church, placed all things in such a healthful way, that
men should not say that they were chosen to the help of the gospel for
their own talent or learning, of whose source they yet were ignorant,
and so be puffed up with deadly pride. Oh, how Cyprian rejoices!
With how much more perfect calmness does he behold how greatly it
conduces to the health of the human race, that in the writings even of
Christian and pious orators there should be found what merits blame,
and in the writings of the fishermen there should nothing of the sort
be found! And so I, being fully assured of this joy of that holy
soul, neither in any way venture to think or say that my writings are
free from every kind of error, nor, in opposing that opinion of his,
wherein it seemed to him that those who came from among heretics were
to be received otherwise than either they had been in former days, as
he himself bears witness, or are now received, as is the reasonable
custom, confirmed by a plenary Council of the whole Christian world,
do I set against him my own view, but that of the holy Catholic
Church, which he so loved and loves, in which he brought forth such
abundant fruit with tolerance, whose entirety he himself was not, but
in whose entirety he remained; whose root he never left, but, though
he already brought forth fruit from its root, he was purged by the
heavenly Husbandman that he should bring forth more fruit;  for
whose peace and safety, that the wheat might not be rooted out
together with the tares, he both reproved with the freedom of truth,
and endured with the grace of charity, so many evils on the part of
men who were placed in unity with himself.
 1 Cor. xi. 16.
 Cypr. Ep. lxxiii. 26.
 Ps. xxvi. 8.
 1 Cor. i. 27.
 John xv. 2.
Chapter 18.--24. Whence Cyprian himself  again admonishes us
with the greatest fullness, that many who were dead in their
trespasses and sins, although they did not belong to the body of
Christ, and the members of that innocent and guileless dove (so that
if she alone baptized, they certainly could not baptize), yet to all
appearance seemed both to be baptized and to baptize within the
Church. And among them, however dead they are, their baptism
nevertheless lives, which is not dead, and death shall have no more
dominion over it. Since, therefore, there be dead men within the
Church, nor are they concealed, for else Cyprian would not have spoken
of them so much, who either do not belong at all to that living dove,
or at least do not as yet belong to her; and since there be dead men
without, who yet more clearly do not belong to her at all, or not as
yet; and since it is true that "another man cannot be quickened by one
who himself liveth not,"--it is therefore clear that those who within
are baptized by such persons, if they approach the sacrament with true
conversion of heart, are quickened by Him whose baptism it is. But if
they renounce the world in word and not in deed, as Cyprian declares
to be the case with some who are within, it is then manifest that they
are not themselves quickened unless they be converted, and yet that
they have true baptism even though they be not converted. Whence also
it is likewise clear that those who are dead without, although they
neither "live themselves, nor quicken others," yet have the living
baptism, which would profit them unto life so soon as they should be
converted unto peace.
 In this and the following chapter, Augustin is examining the
seventy-first epistle of Cyprian to his brother Quintas, bishop in
Mauritania. Here LXXI. 1.
Chapter 19.--25. Wherefore, as regards those who received the persons
who came from heresy in the same baptism of Christ with which they had
been baptized outside the Church, and said "that they followed ancient
custom," as indeed the Church now receives such, it is in vain urged
against them "that among the ancients there were as yet only the first
beginning of heresy and schisms,  so that those were involved in
them who were seceders from the Church, and had originally been
baptized within the Church, so that it was not necessary that they
should be baptized again when they returned and did penance." For so
soon as each several heresy existed, and departed from the communion
of the Catholic Church, it was possible that, I will not even say the
next day, but even on that very day, its votaries might have baptized
some who flocked to them. And therefore if this was the old custom,
that they should be so received into the Church (as could not be
denied even by those who maintained the contrary part in the
discussion), there can be no doubt in the mind of any one who pays
careful attention to the matter, that those also were so received who
had been baptized without in heresy.
26. But I cannot see what show of reason there is in this, that the
name of "erring sheep"  should be denied to one whose lot it has
been that, while seeking the salvation which is in Christ, he has
fallen into the error of heretics, and been baptized in their body;
while he is held to have become a sheep already within the body of the
Catholic Church herself, who has renounced the world in words and not
in deeds, and has received baptism in such falseness of heart as
this. Or if such an one also does not become a sheep unless after
turning to God with a true heart, then, as he is not baptized at the
time when he becomes a sheep, if he had been already baptized, but was
not yet a sheep; so he too, who comes from the heretics that he may
become a sheep, is not then to be baptized if he had been already
baptized with the same baptism, though he was not yet a sheep.
Wherefore, since even all the bad that are within--the covetous, the
envious, the drunkards, and those that live contrary to the discipline
of Christ--may be deservedly called liars, and in darkness, and dead,
and antichrists, do they yet therefore not baptize, on the ground that
"there can be nothing common between truth and falsehood, between
light and darkness, between death and immortality, between Antichrist
and Christ?" 
27. He makes an assumption, then, not "of mere custom," but "of the
reason of truth itself,"  when he says that the sacrament of God
cannot be turned to error by the error of any men, since it is
declared to exist even in those who have erred. Assuredly the Apostle
John says most plainly, "He that hateth his brother is in darkness
even until now;"  and again, "Whosoever hateth his brother is a
murderer;"  and why, therefore, do they baptize those within the
Church whom Cyprian himself declares to be in the envy of malice?
 Apud veteres hæreses et schismata prima adhuc fuisse initia;
that among the ancients heresies and schisms were yet in their very
infancy. Benedictines suggest: "hæresis et schismatum." Hartel
reads: apud veteres hæreseos et schismatum prima adhuc fuerint
 Cypr. Ep. lxxi. 2.
 Cypr. Ep. lxxi. 2.
 Cypr. Ep. lxxi. 3.
 1 John ii. 9.
 1 John iii. 15.
 Cypr. Ep. lxxiii. 14.
Chapter 20.--How does a murderer cleanse and sanctify the water?
How can darkness bless the oil? But if God is present in His
sacraments to confirm His words by whomsoever the sacraments may be
administered, then both the sacraments of God are everywhere valid,
and evil men whom they profit not are everywhere perverse.
28. But what kind of argument is this, that "a heretic must be
considered not to have baptism, because he has not the Church?" And
it must be acknowledged that "when he is baptized, he is questioned
about the Church." Just as though the same question about the
Church were not put in baptism to him who within the Church renounces
the world in word and not in deed. As therefore his false answer does
not prevent what he receives from being baptism, so also the false
reply of the other about the holy Church does not prevent what he
receives from being baptism; and as the former, if he afterwards
fulfill with truth what he promised in falsehood, does not receive a
second baptism, but only an amended life, so also in the case of the
latter, if he come afterwards to the Church about which he gave a
false answer to the question put to him, thinking that he had it when
he had it not, the Church herself which he did not possess is given
him, but what he had received is not repeated. But I cannot tell why
it should be, that while God can "sanctify the oil" in answer to the
words which proceed out of the mouth of a murderer, "He yet cannot
sanctify it on the altar reared by a heretic," unless it be that He
who is not hindered by the false conversion of the heart of man within
the Church is hindered by the false erection of some wood without from
deigning to be present in His sacraments, though no falseness on the
part of men can hinder Him. If, therefore, what is said in the
gospel, that "God heareth not sinners,"  extends so far that the
sacraments cannot be celebrated by a sinner, how then does He hear a
murderer praying, either over the water of baptism, or over the oil,
or over the eucharist, or over the heads of those on whom his hand is
laid? All which things are nevertheless done, and are valid, even at
the hands of murderers, that is, at the hands of those who hate their
brethren, even within, in the Church itself. Since "no one can give
what he does not possess himself,"  how does a murderer give the
Holy Spirit? And yet such an one even baptizeth within the Church.
It is God, therefore, that gives the Holy Spirit even when a man of
this kind is baptizing.
 In this and the next two chapters Augustin is examining the
seventieth epistle of Cyprian, from himself and thirty other bishops
(text of Hartel), to Januarius, Saturninus, Maximus, and fifteen
 In the question, "Dost thou believe in eternal life and
remission of sins through the holy Church?" Cyp. l.c. 2.
 John ix. 31.
 Cypr. Ep. lxx. 2.
Chapter 21.--29. But as to what he says, that "he who comes to the
Church is to be baptized and renewed, that within he may be hallowed
through the holy,"  what will he do, if within also he meets
with those who are not holy? Or can it be that the murderer is holy?
And if the reason for his being baptized in the Church is that "he
should put off this very thing also that he, being a man that sought
to come to God, fell, through the deceit of error, on one profane,"
 where is he afterwards to put off this, that he may chance,
while seeking a man of God within the Church itself, to have fallen,
through the deceit of error, on a murderer? If "there cannot be in a
man something that is void and something that is valid,"  why is
it possible that in a murderer the sacrament should be holy and his
heart unholy? If "whosoever cannot give the Holy Spirit cannot
baptize,"  why does the murderer baptize within the Church? Or
how has the murderer the Holy Spirit, when every one that has the Holy
Spirit is filled with light, but "he who hates his brother is still in
darkness?" If because "there is one baptism, and one Spirit,"
 therefore they cannot have the one baptism who have not the one
Spirit, why do the innocent man and the murderer within the Church
have the one baptism and not have the one Spirit? So therefore the
heretic and the Catholic may have the one baptism, and yet not have
the one Church, as in the Catholic Church the innocent man and the
murderer may have the one baptism, though they have not the one
Spirit; for as there is one baptism, so there is one Spirit and one
Church. And so the result is, that in each person we must acknowledge
what he already has, and to each person we must give what he has not.
If "nothing can be confirmed and ratified with God which has been done
by those whom God calls His enemies and foes,"  why is the
baptism confirmed which is given by murderers? Are we not to call
murderers the enemies and foes of the Lord? But "he that hateth his
brother is a murderer." How then did they baptize who hated Paul, the
servant of Jesus Christ, and thereby hated Jesus Himself, since He
Himself said to Saul, "Why persecutest thou me?"  when he was
persecuting His servants, and since at the last He Himself shall say,
"Inasmuch as ye did it not to one of the least of these that are mine,
ye did it not to me?" Wherefore all who go out from us are
not of us, but not all who are with us are of us; just as when men
thresh, all that flies from the threshing-floor is shown not to be
corn, but not all that remains there is therefore corn. And so John
too says, "They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they
had been of us, they would no doubt have continued with us." 
Wherefore God gives the sacrament of grace even through the hands of
wicked men, but the grace itself only by Himself or through His
saints. And therefore He gives remission of sins either of Himself,
or through the members of that dove to whom He says, "Whosesoever sins
ye remit, they are remitted unto them; and whosesoever sins ye retain,
they are retained." But since no one can doubt that baptism,
which is the sacrament of the remission of sins, is possessed even by
murderers, who are yet in darkness because the hatred of their
brethren is not excluded from their hearts, therefore either no
remission of sins is given to them if their baptism is accompanied by
no change of heart for the better, or if the sins are remitted, they
at once return on them again. And we learn that the baptism is holy
in itself, because it is of God; and whether it be given or whether it
be received by men of such like character, it cannot be polluted by
any perversity of theirs, either within, or yet outside the Church.
 Cypr. Ep. lxx. 2.
 Cypr. Ep. lxx. 2.
 Cypr. Ep. lxx. 3.
 Cypr. Ep. lxx. 3.
 1 John ii. 9.
 Cypr. Ep. lxx. 3.
 Cypr. Ep. lxx. 3.
 Acts ix. 4.
 Matt. xxv. 45.
 1 John ii. 19.
 John xx. 23.
Chapter 22.--30. Accordingly we agree with Cyprian that "heretics
cannot give remission of sins;"  but we maintain that they can
give baptism,--which indeed in them, both when they give and when they
receive it, is profitable only to their destruction, as misusing so
great a gift of God; just as also the malicious and envious, whom
Cyprian himself acknowledges to be within the Church, cannot give
remission of sins, while we all confess that they can give baptism.
For if it was said of those who have sinned against us, "If ye forgive
not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your
trespasses,"  how much more impossible is it that their sins
should be forgiven who hate the brethren by whom they are loved, and
are baptized in that very hatred; and yet when they are brought to the
right way, baptism is not given them anew, but that very pardon which
they did not then deserve is granted them in their true conversion?
And so even what Cyprian wrote to Quintus, and what, in conjunction
with his colleagues Liberalis, Caldonius, Junius, and the rest, he
wrote to Saturninus, Maximus, and others, is all found, on due
consideration, to be in no wise meet to be preferred as against the
agreement of the whole Catholic Church, of which they rejoiced that
they were members, and from which they neither cut themselves away nor
allowed others to be cut away who held a contrary opinion, until at
length, by the will of the Lord, it was made manifest, by a plenary
Council many years afterwards, what was the more perfect way, and that
not by the institution of any novelty, but by confirming what was old.
 Cypr. Ep. lxx. 3.
 Matt. vi. 15.
Chapter 23.--31. Cyprian writes also to Pompeius  about this
selfsame matter, and clearly shows in that letter that Stephen, who,
as we learn, was then bishop of the Roman Church, not only did not
agree with him upon the points before us, but even wrote and taught
the opposite views. But Stephen certainly did not "communicate with
heretics,"  merely because he did not dare to impugn the baptism
of Christ, which he knew remained perfect in the midst of their
perversity. For if none have baptism who entertain false views about
God, it has been proved sufficiently, in my opinion, that this may
happen even within the Church. "The apostles," indeed, "gave no
injunctions on the point;"  but the custom, which is opposed to
Cyprian, may be supposed to have had its origin in apostolic
tradition, just as there are many things which are observed by the
whole Church, and therefore are fairly held to have been enjoined by
the apostles, which yet are not mentioned in their writings.
32. But it will be urged that it is written of heretics that "they
are condemned of themselves." What then? are they not also
condemned of themselves to whom it was said, "For wherein thou judgest
another, thou condemnest thyself?" But to these the apostle
says, "Thou that preachest a man should not steal, dost thou steal?"
 and so forth. And such truly were they who, being bishops and
established in Catholic unity with Cyprian himself, used to plunder
estates by treacherous frauds, preaching all the time to the people
the words of the apostle, who says, "Nor shall extortioners inherit
the kingdom of God." 
33. Wherefore I will do no more than run shortly through the other
sentiments founded on the same rules, which are in the aforesaid
letter written to Pompeius. By what authority of holy Scripture is it
shown that "it is against the commandment of God that persons coming
from the society of heretics, if they have already there received the
baptism of Christ, are not baptized again?" But it is clearly
shown that many pretended Christians, though they are not joined in
the same bond of charity with the saints, without which anything holy
that they may have been able to possess is of no profit to them, yet
have baptism in common with the saints, as has been already
sufficiently proved with the greatest fullness. He says "that the
Church, and the Spirit, and baptism, are mutually incapable of
separation from each other, and therefore" he wishes that "those who
are separated from the Church and the Holy Spirit should be understood
to be separated also from baptism." But if this is the case,
then when any one has received baptism in the Catholic Church, it
remains so long in him as he himself remains in the Church, which is
not so. For it is not restored to him when he returns, just because
he did not lose it when he seceded. But as the disaffected sons have
not the Holy Spirit in the same manner as the beloved sons, and yet
they have baptism; so heretics also have not the Church as Catholics
have, and yet they have baptism. "For the Holy Spirit of discipline
will flee deceit,"  and yet baptism will not flee from it. And
so, as baptism can continue in one from whom the Holy Spirit withdraws
Himself, so can baptism continue where the Church is not. But if "the
laying on of hands" were not "applied to one coming from heresy,"
 he would be as it were judged to be wholly blameless; but for
the uniting of love, which is the greatest gift of the Holy Spirit,
without which any other holy thing that there may be in a man is
profitless to his salvation, hands are laid on heretics when they are
brought to a knowledge of the truth. 
 Cypr. Ep. lxxiv., which is examined by Augustin in the
remaining chapters of this book.
 Cypr. Ep.lxxiv. 2.
 Cypr. Ep.lxxiv. 2.
 Tit. iii. 11.
 Rom. ii. 1.
 Rom. ii. 21.
 1 Cor. vi. 10.
 Cypr. Ep. lxxiv. 4.
 Cypr. Ep. lxxiv. 4.
 Wisd. i. 5.
 Cypr. Ep. lxxiv. 5.
 Cyprian, in the laying on of hands, appears to refer to
confirmation, but Augustin interprets it of the restoration of
penitents. Cp. III. 16, 21.
Chapter 24.--34. I remember that I have already discussed at
sufficient length the question of "the temple of God," and how this
saying is to be taken, "As many of you as have been baptized into
Christ have put on Christ." For neither are the covetous the
temple of God, since it is written, "What agreement hath the temple of
God with idols?" And Cyprian has adduced the testimony of
Paul to the fact that covetousness is idolatry. But men put on
Christ, sometimes so far as to receive the sacrament, sometimes so
much further as to receive holiness of life. And the first of these
is common to good and bad alike; the second, peculiar to the good and
pious. Wherefore, if "baptism cannot be without the Spirit," then
heretics have the Spirit also,--but to destruction, not to salvation,
just as was the case with Saul. For in the Holy Spirit devils
are cast out through the name of Christ, which even he was able to do
who was without the Church, which called forth a suggestion from the
disciples to their Lord. Just as the covetous have the Holy
Spirit, who yet are not the temple of God. For "what agreement hath
the temple of God with idols?" If therefore the covetous have not the
Spirit of God, and yet have baptism, it is possible for baptism to
exist without the Spirit of God.
35. If therefore heresy is rendered "unable to engender sons to God
through Christ, because it is not the bride of Christ,"  neither
can that crowd of evil men established within the Church, since it is
also not the bride of Christ; for the bride of Christ is described as
being without spot or wrinkle. Therefore either not all
baptized persons are the sons of God, or even that which is not the
bride can engender the sons of God. But as it is asked whether "he is
spiritually born who has received the baptism of Christ in the midst
of heretics,"  so it may be asked whether he is spiritually born
who has received the baptism of Christ in the Catholic Church, without
being turned to God in a true heart, of whom it cannot be said that he
has not received baptism.
 Gal. iii. 27.
 2 Cor. vi. 16.
 1 Sam. xix. 23.
 Mark ix. 38.
 Cypr. Ep. lxxiv. 6.
 Eph. v. 27. Cp. Aug. Retract. ii. 18, quoted above, I. 17, 26.
 Cypr. Ep. lxxiv. 7.
Chapter 25.--36. I am unwilling to go on to handle again what Cyprian
poured forth with signs of irritation against Stephen, as it is,
moreover, quite unnecessary. For they are but the selfsame arguments
which have already been sufficiently discussed; and it is better to
pass over those points which involved the danger of baneful
dissension. But Stephen thought that we should even hold aloof from
those who endeavored to destroy the primitive custom in the matter of
receiving heretics; whereas Cyprian, moved by the difficulty of the
question itself, and being most largely endowed with the holy bowels
of Christian charity, thought that we ought to remain at unity with
those who differed in opinion from ourselves. Therefore, although he
was not without excitement, though of a truly brotherly kind, in his
indignation, yet the peace of Christ prevailed in their hearts, that
in such a dispute no evil of schism should arise between them. But it
was not found that "hence grew more abundant heresies and schisms,"
 because what is of Christ in them is approved, and what is of
themselves is condemned; for all the more those who hold this law of
rebaptizing were cut into smaller fragments.
Chapter 26.--37. To go on to what he says, "that a bishop should be
`teachable,'"  adding, "But he is teachable who is gentle and
meek to learn; for a bishop ought not only to teach, but to learn as
well, since he is indeed the better teacher who daily grows and
advances by learning better things;"  --in these words assuredly
the holy man, endowed with pious charity, sufficiently points out that
we should not hesitate to read his letters in such a sense, that we
should feel no difficulty if the Church should afterwards confirm what
had been discovered by further and longer discussions; because, as
there were many things which the learned Cyprian might teach, so there
was still something which the teachable Cyprian might learn. But the
admonition that he gives us, "that we should go back to the fountain,
that is, to apostolic tradition, and thence turn the channel of truth
to our times,"  is most excellent, and should be followed
without hesitation. It is handed down to us, therefore, as he himself
records, by the apostles, that there is "one God, and one Christ, and
one hope, and one faith, and one Church, and one baptism." 
Since then we find that in the times of the apostles themselves there
were some who had not the one hope, but had the one baptism, the truth
is so brought down to us from the fountain itself, that it is clear to
us that it is possible that though there is one Church, as there is
one hope, and one baptism, they may yet have the one baptism who have
not the one Church; just as even in those early times it was possible
that men should have the one baptism who had not the one hope. For
how had they one hope with the holy and the just, who used to say,
"Let us eat and drink, for to-morrow we die,"  asserting that
there was no resurrection of the dead? And yet they were among the
very men to whom the same apostle says, "Was Paul crucified for you?
or were you baptized in the name of Paul?" For he writes most
manifestly to them, saying, "How say some among you that there is no
resurrection of the dead?" 
 "Docibilis;" and so the passage (2 Tim. ii. 24) is quoted
frequently by Augustin. The English version, "apt to teach," is more
true to the original, didaktikos.
 Cypr. Ep. lxxiv. 10.
 Cypr. Ep. lxxiv. 10.
 Ib. 11, and Eph. iv. 4-6.
 1 Cor. xv. 32.
 1 Cor. i. 13.
 1 Cor. xv. 12.
Chapter 27.--38. And in that the Church is thus described in the Song
of Songs, "A garden enclosed is my sister, my spouse; a spring shut
up, a fountain sealed, a well of living water; thy plants are an
orchard of pomegranates, with pleasant fruits;"  I dare not
understand this save of the holy and just,--not of the covetous, and
defrauders, and robbers, and usurers, and drunkards, and the envious,
of whom we yet both learn most fully from Cyprian's letters, as I have
often shown, and teach ourselves, that they had baptism in common with
the just, in common with whom they certainly had not Christian
charity. For I would that some one would tell me how they "crept into
the garden enclosed and the fountain sealed," of whom Cyprian bears
witness that they renounced the world in word and not in deed, and
that yet they were within the Church. For if they both are themselves
there, and are themselves the bride of Christ, can she then be as she
is described "without spot or wrinkle,"  and is the fair dove
defiled with such a portion of her members? Are these the thorns
among which she is a lily, as it is said in the same Song? So
far therefore, as the lily extends, so far does "the garden enclosed
and the fountain sealed," namely, through all those just persons who
are Jews inwardly in the circumcision of the heart  (for "the
king's daughter is all glorious within"  ), in whom is the fixed
number of the saints predestined before the foundation of the world.
But that multitude of thorns, whether in secret or in open separation,
is pressing on it from without, above number. "If I would declare
them," it is said, "and speak of them, they are more than can be
numbered." The number, therefore, of the just persons, "who
are the called according to His purpose,"  of whom it is said,
"The Lord knoweth them that are His,"  is itself "the garden
enclosed, the fountain sealed, a well of living water, the orchard of
pomegranates with pleasant fruits." Of this number some live
according to the Spirit, and enter on the excellent way of charity;
and when they "restore a man that is overtaken in a fault in the
spirit of meekness, they consider themselves, lest they also be
tempted." And when it happens that they also are themselves
overtaken, the affection of charity is but a little checked, and not
extinguished; and again rising up and being kindled afresh, it is
restored to its former course. For they know how to say, "My soul
melteth for heaviness: strengthen thou me according unto Thy word."
But when "in anything they be otherwise minded, God shall
reveal even this unto them,"  if they abide in the burning flame
of charity, and do not break the bond of peace. But some who are yet
carnal, and full of fleshly appetites, are instant in working out
their progress; and that they may become fit for heavenly food, they
are nourished with the milk of the holy mysteries, they avoid in the
fear of God whatever is manifestly corrupt even in the opinion of the
world, and they strive most watchfully that they may be less and less
delighted with worldly and temporal matters. They observe most
constantly the rule of faith which has been sought out with diligence;
and if in aught they stray from it, they submit to speedy correction
under Catholic authority, although, in Cyprian's words, they be tossed
about, by reason of their fleshly appetite, with the various conflicts
of phantasies. There are some also who as yet live wickedly, or even
lie in heresies or the superstitions of the Gentiles, and yet even
then "the Lord knoweth them that are His." For, in that unspeakable
foreknowledge of God, many who seem to be without are in reality
within, and many who seem to be within yet really are without. Of all
those, therefore, who, if I may so say, are inwardly and secretly
within, is that "enclosed garden" composed, "the fountain sealed, a
well of living water, the orchard of pomegranates, with pleasant
fruits." The divinely imparted gifts of these are partly peculiar to
themselves, as in this world the charity that never faileth, and in
the world to come eternal life; partly they are common with evil and
perverse men, as all the other things in which consist the holy
 Cant. iv. 12, 13.
 Eph. v. 27.
 Cant. ii. 2.
 Rom. ii. 29.
 Ps. xlv. 13.
 Ps. xl. 5.
 Rom. viii. 28.
 2 Tim. ii. 19.
 Gal. vi. 1.
 Ps. cxix. 28.
 Phil. iii. 15.
Chapter 28.--39. Hence, therefore, we have now set before us an
easier and more simple consideration of that ark of which Noah was the
builder and pilot. For Peter says that in the ark of Noah, "few, that
is, eight souls, were saved by water. The like figure whereunto even
baptism doth also now save us, (not the putting away of the filth of
the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience towards God)." 
Wherefore, if those appear to men to be baptized in Catholic unity who
renounce the world in words only and not in deeds, how do they belong
to the mystery of this ark in whom there is not the answer of a good
conscience? Or how are they saved by water, who, making a bad use of
holy baptism, though they seem to be within, yet persevere to the end
of their days in a wicked and abandoned course of life? Or how can
they fail to be saved by water, of whom Cyprian himself records that
they were in time past simply admitted to the Church with the baptism
which they had received in heresy? For the same unity of the ark
saved them, in which no one has been saved except by water. For
Cyprian himself says, "The Lord is able of His mercy to grant pardon,
and not to sever from the gifts of His Church those who, being in all
simplicity admitted to the Church, have fallen asleep within her
pale." If not by water, how in the ark? If not in the ark,
how in the Church? But if in the Church, certainly in the ark; and if
in the ark, certainly by water. It is therefore possible that some
who have been baptized without may be considered, through the
foreknowledge of God, to have been really baptized within, because
within the water begins to be profitable to them unto salvation; nor
can they be said to have been otherwise saved in the ark except by
water. And again, some who seemed to have been baptized within may be
considered, through the same foreknowledge of God, more truly to have
been baptized without, since, by making a bad use of baptism, they die
by water, which then happened to no one who was not outside the ark.
Certainly it is clear that, when we speak of within and without in
relation to the Church, it is the position of the heart that we must
consider, not that of the body, since all who are within in heart are
saved in the unity of the ark through the same water, through which
all who are in heart without, whether they are also in body without or
not, die as enemies of unity. As therefore it was not another but the
same water that saved those who were placed within the ark, and
destroyed those who were left without the ark, so it is not by
different baptisms, but by the same, that good Catholics are saved,
and bad Catholics or heretics perish. But what the most blessed
Cyprian thinks of the Catholic Church, and how the heretics are
utterly crushed by his authority; notwithstanding the much I have
already said, I have yet determined to set forth by itself, if God
will, with somewhat greater fullness and perspicuity, so soon as I
shall have first said about his Council what I think is due from me,
which, in God's will, I shall attempt in the following book.
 1 Pet. iii. 20, 21.
 Cypr. Ep. lxxiii. 23.
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