But if, as some that are without God, that is, the unbelieving, say, that He only seemed to suffer (they themselves only seeming to exist), then why am I in bonds? Why do I long to be exposed to 796 the wild beasts? Do I therefore die in vain? 797 Am I not then guilty of falsehood 798 against [the cross of] the Lord?
But if, as some that are without God, that is, the unbelieving, say, He became man in appearance [only], that He did not in reality take unto Him a body, that He died in appearance [merely], and did not in very deed suffer, then for what reason am I now in bonds, and long to be exposed to 799 the wild beasts? In such a case, I die in vain, and am guilty of falsehood 800 against the cross of the Lord. Then also does the prophet in vain declare, “They shall look on Him whom they have pierced, and mourn over themselves as over one beloved.” 801 These men, therefore, are not less unbelievers than were those that crucified Him. But as for me, I do not place my hopes in one who died for me in appearance, but in reality. For that which is false is quite abhorrent to the truth. Mary then did truly conceive a body which had God inhabiting it. And God the Word was truly born of the Virgin, having clothed Himself with a body of like passions with our own. He who forms all men in the womb, was Himself really in the womb, and made for Himself a body of the seed of the Virgin, but without any intercourse of man. He was carried in the womb, even as we are, for the usual period of time; and was really born, as we also are; and was in reality nourished with milk, and partook of common meat and drink, even as we do. And when He had lived among men for thirty years, He was baptized by John, really and not in appearance; and when He had preached the Gospel three years, and done signs and wonders, He who was Himself the Judge was judged by the Jews, falsely so called, and by Pilate the governor; was scourged, was smitten on the cheek, was spit upon; He wore a crown of thorns and a purple robe; He was condemned: He was crucified in reality, and not in appearance, not in imagination, not in deceit. He really died, and was buried, and rose from the dead, even as He prayed in a certain place, saying, “But do Thou, O Lord, raise me up again, and I shall recompense them.” 802 And the Father, who always hears Him, 803 answered and said, “Arise, O God, and judge the earth; for Thou shall receive all the heathen for Thine inheritance.” 804 The Father, therefore, who raised Him up, will also raise us up through Him, apart from whom no one will attain to true life. For says He, “I am the life; he that believeth in me, even though he die, shall live: and every one that liveth and believeth in me, even though he die, shall live for ever.” 805 Do ye therefore flee from these ungodly heresies; for they are the inventions of the devil, that serpent who was the author of evil, and who by means of the woman deceived Adam, the father of our race.
Literally, “to fight with.”70:797
Some read this and the following clause affirmatively, instead of interrogatively.70:798
The meaning is, that is they spoke the truth concerning the phantasmal character of Christs death, then Ignatius was guilty of a practical falsehood in suffering for what was false.70:799
Literally, “to fight with.”70:800
The meaning is, that is they spoke the truth concerning the phantasmal character of Christs death, then Ignatius was guilty of a practical falsehood in suffering for what was false.70:801
Zech. xii. 10.70:802
Ps. xli. 10.70:803
Comp. John xi. 42.70:804
Ps. lxxxii. 8.70:805
John 11:25, 26.