Victorinus: In Apocalypsin (3.1-3)

[3.1] The fifth kind, selection, or conduct of the saints, shows negligent men, doing other than they should in the world, foolish works, Christian in name only. And therefore he exhorts them, if they can turn back from dangerous negligence, to be saved. He says: Be strong for those who are dying; for I have not found your works full before my God. For it is not enough for a tree to live, and flourish, but not have fruit, as it is not enough to be called a Christian, and to confess Him, but not have Christian works.

[3.2] The sixth kind, the best conduct of the selection, the behavior of saints is described, namely those who are humble in the world and simple in the Scriptures, and bearing an unshakable faith, not being frightened by anything and drawing back from the Faith. Therefore he says to them: I have placed before you an open door and he says for you have kept the word of my patience, with such little strength, and I will keep you from the hour of temptation: so that they will know of what kind is His glory, indeed He does not allow them to be handed over to temptation. He says, He who conquers will be made a column in the temple of God: for a column is beautiful for a building, that is, he who perseveres will be considered more noble in the Church.

[3.3] And this selection, the seventh kind, describes wealthy men, believers who are in dignified positions, but believers that are rich men: they indeed discuss the Scriptures at home in their rooms, but outside no one would know they are believers. Namely, they are boasters who also say that they know everything, possessed of confidence in letters, but their works are empty. And therefore he says to them neither cold nor hot are they, that is, neither unbelievers nor believers, for they are all things to all people. And what is neither cold nor hot must be lukewarm, so that it causes nausea: he says, And I will vomit you out of my mouth. Nausea, though it is hateful, harms no one: so with this kind of men, who will be ejected. But that this is a time of penitence, he says: I counsel you, buy refined gold from me, that is, if you are able, to suffer anything for the name of the Lord. He says And anoint your eyes with salve, that is, that what you gladly know from the Scriptures, you might also try to do the deed. And because, if this kind of men turns back from great destruction to penitence, not only will they be useful to themselves, but are able to benefit many, not a mediocre reward is promised to them, that is: to sit upon a throne as judges.

This entry was posted in Patristics. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>