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Chapter IV.—A Paralytic Jew healed by Atticus in Baptism.

This was one important improvement in the circumstances of the Church, which happened during the administration of Atticus. Nor were these times without the attestation of miracles and healings. For a certain Jew being a paralytic had been confined to his bed for many years; and as every sort of medical skill, and the prayers of his Jewish brethren had been resorted to but had availed nothing, he had recourse at length to Christian baptism, trusting in it as the only true remedy to be used. 910 When Atticus the bishop was informed of his wishes, he instructed him in the first principles of Christian truth, and having preached to him to hope in Christ, directed that he should be brought in his bed to the font. The paralytic Jew receiving baptism with a sincere faith, as soon as he was taken out of the baptismal font found himself perfectly cured of his disease, and continued to enjoy sound health afterwards. This miraculous power Christ vouchsafed to be manifested even in our times; and the fame of it caused many heathens to believe and be baptized. But the Jews although zealously ‘seeking after signs,’ 911 not even the signs which actually took place induced to embrace the faith. Such blessings were thus conferred by Christ upon men.



On the supposed miraculous effects of baptism, see Tertullian, de baptismo, passim.


1 Cor. i. 22.

Next: The Presbyter Sabbatius, formerly a Jew, separates from the Novatians.