============================== >>>For I determined not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified.. I Corinthians 2: 2<<<=============================
Published On: Thu, Sep 12th, 2013

Peter – The man with purpose (Part XVII)

Peter – The man with purpose (Part XVII)

[su_heading style=”1″][su_button link=”#” color=”#4B0082″ size=”5″ style=”5″ dark=”0″ radius=”10″ icon=” target=”blank”]Peter – The man with purpose (Part XVII)[/su_button][/su_heading]

Sitting in Judgment upon God:

When Aquila had thus spoken, then I Clement said:  “To-morrow, my father, you shall speak as you please, and we will gladly hear you; for I suppose it will also be gratifying to you that you have to do with those who are not ignorant of the science which you profess.”  When, therefore, it had been settled between the old man and me, that on the following day we should hold a discussion on the subject of Genesis—whether all things are done under its influence, or there be anything in us which is not done by Genesis, but by the judgment of the mind—Peter rose up, and began to speak to the following effect: “To me it is exceedingly wonderful, that things which can easily be found out men make difficult by recondite thoughts and words; and those especially who think themselves wise, and who, wishing to comprehend the will of God, treat God as if He were a man, yea, as if He were something less than a man:  for no one can know the purpose or mind of a man unless he himself reveal his thoughts; and neither can any one learn a profession unless he be for a long time instructed by a master.  How much more must it be, that no one can know the mind or the work of the invisible and incomprehensible God, unless He Himself send a prophet to declare His purpose, and expound the way of His creation, so far as it is lawful for men to learn it!  Hence I think it ridiculous when men judge of the power of God in natural ways, and think that this is possible and that impossible to Him, or this greater and that less, while they are ignorant of everything; who, being unrighteous men, judge the righteous God; unskilled, judge the contriver; corrupt, judge the incorruptible; creatures, judge the Creator.

The True Prophet:

But I would not have you think, that in saying this I take away the power of judging concerning things; but I give counsel that no one walk through devious places, and rush into errors without end.  And therefore I advise not only wise men, but indeed all men who have a desire of knowing what is advantageous to them, that they seek after the true Prophet; for it is He alone who knoweth all things, and who knoweth what and how every man is seeking. For He is within the mind of everyone of us, but in those who have no desire of the knowledge of God and His righteousness, He is inoperative; but He works in those who seek after that which is profitable to their souls, and kindles in them the light of knowledge.  Wherefore seek Him first of all; and if you do not find Him, expect not that you shall learn anything from any other.  But He is soon found by those who diligently seek Him through love of the truth, and whose souls are not taken possession of by wickedness.  For He is present with those who desire Him in the innocency of their spirits, who bear patiently, and draw sighs from the bottom of their hearts through love of the truth; but He deserts malevolent minds, because as a prophet He knows the thoughts of everyone.  And therefore let no one think that he can find Him by his own wisdom, unless, as we have said, he empty his mind of all wickedness, and conceive a pure and faithful desire to know Him.  For when any one has so prepared himself, He Himself as a prophet, seeing a mind prepared for Him, of His own accord offers Himself to his knowledge.

His Deliverances Not to Be Questioned:

“Therefore, if any one wishes to learn all things, he cannot do it by discussing them one by one; for, being mortal, he shall not be able to trace the counsel of God, and to scan immensity itself.  But if, as we have said, he desires to learn all things, let him seek after the true Prophet; and when he has found Him, let him not treat with Him by questions and disputations and arguments; but if He has given any response, or pronounced any judgment, it cannot be doubted that this is certain.  And therefore, before all things, let the true Prophet be sought, and His words be laid hold of.  In respect to these this only should be discussed by everyone, that he may satisfy himself if they are truly His prophetic words; that is, if they contain undoubted faith of things to come, if they mark out definite times, if they preserve the order of things, if they do not relate as last those things which are first, nor as first those things which were done last, if they contain nothing subtle, nothing composed by magic art to deceive, or if they have not transferred to themselves things which were revealed to others, and have mixed them with falsehoods.  And when, all these things having been discussed by right judgment, it is established that they are prophetic words, so they ought to be at once believed concerning all things on which they have spoken and answered.

Ignorance of the Philosophers:

“For let us consider carefully the work of divine providence. For whereas the philosophers have introduced certain subtitle and difficult words, so that not even the terms that they use in their discourses can be known and understood by all, God has shown that those who thought themselves word-framers are altogether unskilful as respects the knowledge of the truth.  For the knowledge of things which is imparted by the true Prophet is simple, and plain, and brief; which those men walking through devious places, and through the stony difficulties of words, are wholly ignorant of.  Therefore, to modest and simple minds, when they see things come to pass which have been foretold, it is enough, and more than enough, that they may receive most certain knowledge from most certain prescience; and for the rest may be at peace, having received evident knowledge of the truth.  For all other things are treated by opinion, in which there can be nothing firm.  For what speech is there which may not be contradicted?  And what argument is there that may not be overthrown by another argument?  And hence it is, that by disputation of this sort men can never come to any end of knowledge and learning, but find the end of their life sooner than the end of their questions.

End of the Conference:

“And, therefore, since amongst these philosophers are things uncertain, we must come to the true Prophet.  Him God the Father wished to be loved by all, and accordingly He has been pleased wholly to extinguish those opinions which have originated with men, and in regard to which there is nothing like certainty—that He the true Prophet might be the more sought after, and that He whom they had blocked up.  So Whiston. They had obscured should show to men the way of truth.  For on this account also God made the world, and by Him the world is filled; whence also He is everywhere near to them who seek Him, though He be sought in the remotest ends of the earth.  But if any one seek Him not purely, nor holily, nor faithfully, He is indeed within him, because He is everywhere, and is found within the minds of all men; but, as we have said before, He is dormant to the unbelieving, and is held to be absent from those by whom His existence is not believed.”  And when Peter had said this, and more to the same effect, concerning the true Prophet, he dismissed the crowds; and when he very earnestly entreated the old man to remain with us, he could prevail nothing; but he also departed, to return next day, as had been agreed upon.  And after this, we also, with Peter, went to our lodging, and enjoyed our accustomed food and rest.

An Explanation:

On the following day, Peter, along with us, hastened early to the place in which the discussion had been held the day before; and when he saw that great crowds had assembled there to hear, and saw the old man with them, he said to him “Old man, it was agreed yesterday that you should confer to-day with Clement; and that you should either show that nothing takes place apart from genesis, or that Clement should prove that there is no such thing as genesis, but that what we do is in our own power.”  To this the old man answered:  “I both remember what was agreed upon, and I keep in memory the words which you spoke after the agreement was made, in which you taught that it is impossible for man to know anything, unless he learn from the true Prophet.”  Then Peter said:  “You do not know what I meant; but I shall now explain to you.  I spoke of the will and purpose of God, which He had before the world was, and by which purpose He made the world, appointed times, gave the law, promised a world to come to the righteous for the rewarding of their good deeds, and decreed punishments to the unjust according to a judicial sentence.  I said that this counsel and this will of God cannot be found out by men, because no man can gather the mind of God from conjectures and opinion, unless a prophet sent by Him declare it.  I did not therefore speak of any doctrines or studies, that they cannot be found out or known without a prophet; for I know that both arts and sciences can be known and practised by men, which they have learned, not from the true Prophet, but from human instructors.

Abad of Jesus Christ,

  Stulo Robinson.S.

About the Author

Leave a comment

You must be Logged in to post comment.

====================================>>>Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house. Acts 16:31 <<<====================================