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Chapter VI.—Abstain from the poison of heretics.

I therefore, yet not I, but the love of Jesus Christ, entreat you that ye use Christian nourishment only, and abstain from herbage of a different kind; I mean heresy. For those 755 [that are given to this] mix 756 up Jesus Christ with their own poison, speaking things which are unworthy of credit, like those who administer a deadly drug in sweet wine, which he who is ignorant of does greedily 757 take, with a fatal pleasure 758 leading to his own death.

I therefore, yet not I, out the love of Jesus Christ, “entreat you that ye all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind, and in the same judgment.” 759 For there are some vain talkers 760 and deceivers, not Christians, but Christ-betrayers, 761 bearing about the name of Christ in deceit, and “corrupting the word” 762 of the Gospel; while they intermix the poison of their deceit with their persuasive talk, 763 as if they mingled aconite with sweet wine, that so he who drinks, being deceived in his taste by the very great sweetness of the draught, may incautiously meet with his death. One of the ancients gives us this advice, “Let no man be called good who mixes good with evil.” 764 For they speak of Christ, not that they may preach Christ, but that they may reject Christ; and they speak 765 of the law, not that they may establish the law, but that they may proclaim things contrary to it. For they alienate Christ from the Father, and the law from Christ. They also calumniate His being born of the Virgin; they are ashamed of His cross; they deny His passion; and they do not believe His resurrection. They introduce God as a Being unknown; they suppose Christ to be unbegotten; and as to the Spirit, they do not admit that He exists. Some of them say that the Son is a mere man, and that the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are but the same person, and that the creation is the work of God, not by Christ, but by some other strange power.



The ellipsis in the original is here very variously supplied.


Literally, “interweave.”


Or, “sweetly.”


The construction is here difficult and doubtful.


1 Cor. i. 10.


Tit. i. 10.


Literally, “Christ-sellers.”


2 Cor. ii. 17.


Literally, “sweet address.”


Apost. Constitutions, vi. 13.


Supplied from the old Latin version.

Next: Chapter VII.—The same continued.