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DIALOGUE WITH TRYPHO
1. While I was
going about one morning in the walks of the Xystus, a certain man, with others
in his company, having met me, and said, Hail, O philosopher! And immediately
after saying this, he turned around and walked along with me; his friends
likewise following him. And I in turn having addressed him, said, What is so
2. And he replied,
I was instructed, by Corinthus the Socratic in Argos, that I ought not to
despise or treat with indifference those who array themselves in this dress, but
to show them all kindness, and to associate with them, as perhaps some advantage
would spring from the intercourse either to some such man or to myself.
3. It is good,
moreover, for both, if either the one or the other be benefited. On this
account, therefore, whenever I see any one in such costume, I gladly approach
him, and now, for the same reason, have I willingly accosted you; and these
accompany me, in the expectation of hearing for themselves something profitable
4. But who are
you, most excellent man? So I
replied to him in jest. Then he
told me frankly both his name and his family. , I am called Trypho, he said; and
I am a Hebrew of the circumcision, and having escaped from the war lately
carried on there, I am spending my days in Greece, and chiefly at Corinth.
5. And in what,
said I, would you be profited by philosophy so much as by your own lawgiver and
the prophets? Why not? he replied.
Do not the philosophers turn every discourse on God? And do not questions
continually arise to them about His unity and providence?
Is this not truly the duty of philosophy, to investigate the Deity?
6. Assuredly, so I
said, we too have believed. But
most have not taken thought of this, whether there be one or more gods, and
whether they have a regard for each one of us or not, as if this knowledge
contributed nothing to our happiness;
7. They moreover
attempt to persuade us that God takes care of the universe with its generations
and species, but not of me and you, and each individually, since otherwise we
would surely not need to pray to Him night and day.
8. But the upshot
of this is not difficult to understand; for fearless and license in speaking
thereof comes to such as maintain these opinions, doing and saying whatever they
choose, neither dreading punishment nor hoping for any benefit from God.
For how could
they? They affirm that the same things shall always happen; and further, that
you and I shall again live in like manner, having become neither better men nor
10. But there are
some others, who, having supposed the soul to be immortal and immaterial,
believe that though they have committed evil they will not suffer punishment,
and that the soul, in consequence of its immortality, needs nothing from God.
11. And he, smiling
gently, said; Tell us your opinion
of these matters, and what idea you entertain respecting God, and what you
Justin describes his studies in
12. I will tell
you, said I, what seems to me; for philosophy is in fact the greatest
possession, and most honorable before God, to whom it leads us and alone
commends us; and these who have bestowed attention on philosophy are truly holy
13. What philosophy
is, however, and the reason why it has been sent down to men, has escaped the
observation of most; for this knowledge being One there would be neither
Platonist, nor Stoic, nor Peripatetic, nor Theoretic, nor Pythagorean.
And so I wish to tell you why it has become many-headed.
14. It has happened
that those who first handled it, and who were therefore esteemed illustrious
men, were succeeded by those who made no investigations concerning truth, but
only admired the perseverance and self-discipline of the former, as well as the
novelty of the doctrines; and each thought that to be true which he learned from
latter persons handed down to their successors such things, and others similar
to them; and this system was called by the name of him who was styled the father
of the doctrine. And being at first desirous of personally conversing with one
of these men, I surrendered myself to a certain Stoic.
16. And having
spent a considerable time with him, when I had not acquired any further
knowledge of God (for he did not know Him, and said such instruction was
unnecessary), I left him and took myself to another, who was called a
Peripatetic, and as he fancied himself shrewd.
17. And this man,
after having entertained me for the first few days, requested me to settle the
fee, in order that our intercourse might not be unprofitable. Him, for this
reason I abandoned him, believing him to be no philosopher at all.
18. But when my
soul was eagerly desirous to hear the peculiar and choice philosophy, I came to
a very celebrated Pythagorean, a man who thought much of his own wisdom. And
when I had an interview with him, willing to become his hearer and disciple, he
said, 'what then? Are you acquainted with music, astronomy, and geometry?
Do you expect
to perceive any of those things which conduce to a happy life, if you have not
been first informed on those points which wean the soul from sensible objects,
and render it fitted for objects which appertain to the mind, so that it can
contemplate that which is honorable in its essence and that which is good in its
commended many of these branches of learning, and telling me that they were
necessary, he dismissed me when I confessed to him my ignorance.
Accordingly, I took it rather impatiently, as was to be expected when I
failed in my hope, the more so because I deemed the man had some knowledge; but
reflecting again on the space of time during which I would have to linger over
those branches of learning, I was not able to endure longer procrastination.
In my helpless
condition it occurred to me to have a meeting with the Platonists, for their
fame was great. I thereupon spent as much of my time as possible with one who
had lately settled in our city, --a sagacious man, holding a high position among
the Platonists, --and I progressed, and daily made great improvements.
22. And the
perception of the immaterial things quite overpowered me, and the contemplation
of ideas furnished my mind with wings, so that in a little while I supposed that
I had become wise; and such was my stupidity, I expected forthwith to look upon
God, for this is the end of Plato's philosophy.
narrates the manner of his conversion.
1. And while I was
thus disposed, when I wished at one period to be filled with great quietness,
and to shun the path of men, I used to go into a certain field not far from the
sea. And when I was near that spot one day, which having reached I purposed to
be by myself, a certain old man, by no means contemptible in appearance,
exhibiting meek and venerable manners followed me at a little distance.
2. And when I
turned around to him, having halted, I fixed my eyes rather keenly on him. And
he said, do you know me? I replied
in the negative. Why then, said he
to me, do you so look at me? I am
astonished, I said, because you have chanced to be in my company in the same
place; for I had not expected to see any man here.
3. And he said to
me, I am concerned about some of my household. They are gone away from me;
wherefore I have come to search for them, if perhaps they shall make their
appearance somewhere. But why
are you here? Said he to me.
I delight, said I, in such walks where my attention is not distracted to
converse with myself uninterrupted; and such places are most fit for philosophy.
4. Are you, then,
a philologian, so he said, but no lover of deeds or of truth? And do you not aim
at being a practical man so much as being a sophist?
I then aid; What greater work could one accomplish than this, to show the
reason which governs all, and having laid hold of it, and being mounted upon it,
to look down on the errors of others, and their pursuits?
philosophy and right reason, prudence would not be present in any man. Wherefore
it is necessary for every man to philosophize, and to esteem this the greatest
and most honorable work, with other things only of second-rate or third-rate
6. Though, indeed
if they be made to depend on philosophy, they are of moderate value, and worthy
of acceptance; but deprived of it, and not accompanying it, they are vulgar and
coarse to those who pursue them. And
interrupting me he said Does philosophy then, make happiness?
To which I said Assuredly, and it alone.
7. What, then, is
philosophy? He said; And what is
happiness? Pray tell me, unless something hinders you from saying.
Philosophy, then, said I, is the knowledge of that which really exists,
and a clear perception of the truth; and happiness is the reward of such
knowledge and wisdom.
8. But what do you
call God? he said. That which
always maintains the same nature, and in the same manner, and is the cause of
all other things - that indeed, is God, so
I answered him; And he
listened to me with pleasure, and thus again interrogated me:
9. Is not
knowledge a term common to different matters?
For in arts of all kinds, he who knows any one of them is called a
skilful man in the art of generalship, or of ruling, or equally of healing.
But in divine and human affairs it is not so.
10. Is there a
knowledge which affords understanding of human and divine things, and then a
thorough acquaintance with the divinity and the righteousness of them?
Assuredly, I replied. Is it
then in the same way we know man and God, as we know music, and arithmetic, and
astronomy, or any other similar branch?
11. By no means, I
replied. He then said, you have not
answered me correctly, for some comes to us by learning, or by employment while
others we have knowledge of by sight.
If one then were to tell you that there exists in India an animal with a
nature unlike all others, but of such and such a kind, multiform and various,
you would not know it before you saw it; but neither would you be competent to
give any account of it, unless you should hear from one who had seen it.
12. Certainly not,
I said. How then, he said, should the philosophers judge
correctly about God, or speak any truth, when they have no knowledge of Him,
having neither seen Him at any time, nor heard Him?
I then said;
the Deity cannot be seen merely by the eyes, as other living beings can, but is
discernible to the mind alone, as Plato says; and I believe him.
The soul of itself cannot see God.
14. Is there then,
he said, such and so great a power in our mind? Or can a man not sooner perceive by senses? Will the mind of
man see God at any time, if it is uninstructed by the Holy Spirit?
I replied; Plato indeed says that the mind's eye is of such a nature, and
has been given for this end, that we may see that very Being when the mind is
pure itself, who is the cause of all discerned by the mind, having no color, no
form, no greatness, no nothing indeed, which the bodily eye looks upon.
15. But he goes on
to say that it is something of this sort beyond all essence, unutterable and
inexplicable, but alone honorable and good, coming suddenly into souls that are
well disposed, on account of their affinity to, and desire of seeing Him.
16. What affinity,
then, replied he, is there between us and God? Is the soul also divine and
immortal, and a part of that very regal mind? And even as that sees God, so also
is it attainable by us to conceive of the Deity in our mind, and thence to
become happy? Assuredly, so I said.
17. And do all the
souls of all living beings comprehend Him? he asked; or are the souls of men of
one kind and the souls of horses and of asses of another kind?
No; but the souls which are in all are similar, so I answered.
Then, said he, shall both horses and asses see, or have they seen God at
some time or another?
18. No, I said; for
the majority of men will not, save such as shall live justly, purified by
righteousness, and by every other virtue. It
is not, therefore, said he, on account of his affinity, that a man sees God, nor
because he has a mind, but because he is temperate and righteous?
19. Yes, said I;
and because he has that whereby he perceives God. What then? Do goats or sheep injure anyone?
Noone in any respect, so I said. Therefore
these animals will see according to your account, said he.
No; for their body being of such a nature, is an obstacle to them.
He rejoined, If
these animals could assume speech, be well assured that they would with greater
reason ridicule our body; but let us now dismiss this subject, and let it be
conceded to you as you say. Tell
me, however, this: Does the soul see so long as it is in the body, or after it
has been removed from it?
21. I replied;
So long as it is in the form of a man, it is possible for it to attain to
this by means of the mind; but especially when it has been set free from the
body, and being apart by itself, it gets possession of that which it was wont
continually and wholly to love.
22. Does it
remember this then when it is again in the man? It does not appear to me so, I said. What, then, is the advantage to those who have seen God?
Or what has he who has seen more than he who has not seen, unless he
remembers this fact, that he has seen? I
cannot tell, I answered.
23. And what do
those suffer who are judged to be unworthy of this spectacle? said he.
Are they imprisoned in the bodies of certain wild beasts, and is this
their punishment, and do they know that it is for this reason they are in such
forms, and that they have committed some sin?
I do not think so.
24. Then as it
seems, these reap no advantage from their punishment, moreover, I would say that
they are not punished unless they are conscious of the punishment.
No indeed, therefore souls neither see God nor trans-migrate into other
bodies; for they would know that so they are punished, and they would be afraid
to commit even the most trivial sin afterwards.
But that they
can perceive that God exists, and that righteousness and piety are honorable, I
also quite agree with you,' said he. You
are right, I replied.
philosophers know nothing then about these things; for they cannot tell what a
soul is. It does not appear so.
Nor ought it to be called immortal; for if it is immortal, it is plainly
un-begotten. It is both un-begotten
and immortal, according to some who are styled Platonists.
Do you say that the world is also un-begotten?
Some say so, but I do not however agree with them.
2. You are right;
for what reason has one for supposing that a body so solid possessing
resistance, composite, changeable, decaying, and renewed every day, has not
arisen from some cause? But
if the world is begotten, souls also are necessarily begotten;
3. And perhaps at
one time they were not in existence, for they were made on account of men and
other living creatures, if you will say that they have been begotten wholly
apart, and not along with their respective bodies. This seems to be correct.
They are not, then, immortal?
No; since the world has appeared to us to be begotten.
4. But I do not
say that all souls die; for that would truly be of a good fortune to the evil.
What then? The souls of the pious remain in a better place, while those
of the unjust and wicked are in a worse, waiting for the time of judgment. Thus
some which have appeared worthy of God never die; but others are punished so
long as God wills them to exist and to be punished.
5. Is what you
say, then, of a like nature with that which Plato hints about the world, when he
says that it is indeed subject to decay, inasmuch as it has been created, but
that it will neither be dissolved nor meet with the fate of death on account of
the will of God?
6. Does it seem to
you the very same can be said of the soul, and generally of all things? For
those things which exist after God, or shall at any time exist, these have the
nature of decay, and are such as may be blotted out and cease to exist; for God
alone is un-begotten and incorruptible, and therefore He is God, but all other
things after Him are created and corruptible.
7. For this reason
souls both die and are punished: since, if they were un-begotten, they would
neither sin, nor be filled with folly, nor be cowardly, and again ferocious; nor
would they willingly transform into swine, and serpents, and dogs and it would
not indeed be just to compel them, if they be un-begotten.
8. It makes no
matter to me, said he, whether Plato or any other man held such opinions. For
the truth is so; and you should perceive this. The soul assuredly is or has
life. If then it were life,
it would cause something else, and not itself to live, even as motion would move
something else than itself.
9. But one will
deny that the soul lives, but if it lives, it lives not as being life, but as
the partaker of life; but that which partakes of anything is different from that
of which it does partake. The soul
then partakes of life, since God wills it to live.
Thus, it will
not partake when God does not wills it to live. For to live is not its
attribute, as it is God's; but as a man does not live always, and the soul is
not forever co-joined with the body, since whenever this harmony must be broken
up, the soul leaves the body, and the man exists no longer;
11. Even so,
whenever the soul must cease to exist, the spirit of life is removed from it,
and there is no more soul, but it goes back to the place from whence it was
The knowledge of truth to be sought
from the prophets alone.
12. Should any one,
then, employ a teacher? I said, or whence may any one be helped, if there is no
truth in them? 'There existed, long
before this time, certain men more ancient than all those who are esteemed
philosophers, both righteous and beloved by God, who spoke by the Divine Spirit,
and foretold events which would take place, and which are now taking place.
13. These are
called prophets, and these alone both saw and announced the truth to men,
neither reverencing nor fearing any man, not influenced by a desire for glory,
but speaking those things which they saw and which they heard, being filled with
the Holy Spirit.
14. Their writings
are still exist, and he who has read them is very much helped in this knowledge
of the beginning and end of things, and of those matters, which the philosopher
ought to know, provided he has believed them.
15. For they did
not use demonstration in their treatises, seeing that they were witnesses to the
truth above all demonstration, and worthy of belief; and those events which have
happened, and those which are happening, compel you to assent to the utterances
made by them.
16. Although they
were entitled to credit on account of the miracles which they performed, since
they both glorified the Creator, the God and Father of all things, and
proclaimed His Son, the Christ, whom the false prophets, that are filled with
the unclean spirit, neither do nor have done, but venture to work certain
wonderful deeds for the purpose of astonishing men, and glorify the spirits and
demons of error.
But pray that,
above all things, the gates of light may be opened to you; for these things
cannot be perceived or understood by all, but only by the man to whom God and
His Christ have imparted wisdom.
When he had
spoken these and many other things for which there is no time at present, he
went away, bidding me to attend to them; and I have not seen him since.
19. But straightway
a flame was kindled in my soul; and a love of the prophets possessed me, and of
those men who are friends of Christ, and while resolving his words in my mind, I
found this philosophy alone to be safe and profitable.
Thus, and for
this reason, I am a philosopher. Moreover,
I wish that all who make a resolution similar to my own do not keep themselves
away from the words of the Savior. For they possess a great power in themselves, and are
sufficient to inspire those who turn aside from the path of rectitude with awe;
while the sweetest rest is afforded to those who make a diligent practice of
If, then, you
have any concern for yourself, and if you are eagerly looking for salvation, and
if you believe in God, you may, since you are not indifferent to the matter --
become acquainted with the Christ of God, and, after being initiated, live a
22. When I had said
this, my beloved friends those who were with Trypho laughed; but he smiling
said, I approve of your other remarks, and admire the eagerness with which you
study the divine things; but it were better for you to abide in the philosophy
of Plato, or of some other man, cultivating endurance, self-control, and
moderation, rather than be deceived by false words, and follow the opinions of
men of no reputation.
23. For if you
remain in that mode of philosophy, and live blamelessly, a hope of a better
destiny were left to you; but when you forsake God, and repose confidence in
man, what safety will await you?
24. If, then, you
are willing to listen to me, first be circumcised, then observe what ordinances
have been enacted with respect to the Sabbath, and the feasts, and the new moons
of God; and, in a word, do all things which have been written in the law: and
then perhaps you shall obtain mercy from God.
But Christ, if
He has indeed been born, and exists anywhere, is unknown to me, and does not
know Himself, and has no power until Elias comes to anoint Him, and make Him
manifest to all. And thus for you, having accepted a groundless report, have
invented a Christ for yourselves, and for His sake are perishing.
The Christians have not believed
26. Excuse and
forgive me, my friend," so I said. For you know not what you say, but you
have been persuaded by teachers that do not understand the Scriptures; and you
speak like a diviner to whatever comes into your mind.
But if you are
willing to listen to an account of Him, how we have not been deceived, and shall
not cease to confess Him, although men's reproaches be heaped upon us, and
although the most terrible tyrant compel us to deny Him, I shall prove to you
that we have not believed empty fables, or words without foundation but words
filled with the Spirit of God, and with power, and flourishing with grace.
those who were in his company laughed, and shouted in an unseemly manner. Then I
rose up and was about to leave; but he, taking hold of my garment, he said, that
I should not do so until I have performed what I promised.
29. Let then, so I
said, not your companions be so tumultuous, or behave so disgracefully.
But if they wish, let them listen in silence; or, if some better
occupation presents them, let them go away; while we, retiring to some spot, and
resting there, may finish the discourse."
good to Trypho that we should do so; and having agreed upon it, we retired to
the middle space of the Xystus, while two of his friends, that had ridiculed and
made game of our zeal, went off.
31. And when we
were come to that place, where there are stone seats on both sides, those with
Trypho, having seated themselves on the one side, conversed with each other,
some one of them having thrown in a remark about the war waged in Judea.
blames the Christians
1. And when they
ceased, I again addressed them thus: Is there any other matter, my friends, in
which we are blamed, than this, that we live not after the law, and are not
circumcised in the flesh as your forefathers were, and do not observe the
sabbath’s as you do?
2. Are our lives
and customs also slandered among you? And,
have you also believed concerning us, that we eat men; and that after the feast,
having extinguished the lights, we engage in promiscuous concubine-age?
Or do you condemn us in this alone, that we adhere to such tenets, and
believe in an opinion, untrue, as you think?
3. This is what we
are amazed at, said Trypho, but those things about which the multitude speak are
not worthy of belief; for they are most repugnant to human nature.
Moreover, I am aware that your precepts in the so-called Gospel are so
wonderful and so great, that I suspect no one can keep them; for I have
carefully read them.
4. But this is
what we are most at a loss about: that you, professing to be pious, and
supposing yourselves better than others, are not in any particular manner
separated from them, and do not alter your mode of living from the nations, in
that you observe no festivals or Sabbath’s, and do not have the rite of
5. And further,
resting your hopes on a man that was crucified, you yet expect to obtain some
good thing from God, while you do not obey His commandments. Have you not read,
that; that soul shall be cut off from his people who has not been circumcised on
the eighth day?
6. And this has
been ordained for strangers and for slaves equally. But you, despising this
covenant rashly, reject the consequent duties, and attempt to persuade
yourselves that you know God, when, however, you perform none of those things
which they do that fear God.
you can defend yourself on these points, and manifest in what way you hope for
anything whatsoever, even though you do not observe the law, this we would
gladly hear from you, and we shall make other similar investigations.
8. I then
addressed him; There will be no other God, O Trypho, nor was there any other
existing from eternity, but He who made and disposed all this universe.
Nor do we think that there is one God for us, and another for you, but
that He alone is God who led your fathers out from Egypt with a strong hand and
a high arm.
9. Nor have we
trusted in any other, but in Him in whom you also have trusted, the God of
Abraham, and of Isaac, and of Jacob. But we do not trust through Moses or
through the law for then we would do the same as you.
10. But now, for I
have read that there shall be a final law, and a covenant, the head of all,
which it is now incumbent on all men to observe, as many as are seeking after
the inheritance of God. For the law promulgated on Horeb is now old, and belongs
to you alone; but this is for all universally.
11. Law now placed
against law abrogates that which is before it, and a covenant which comes after
in like manner puts an end to the previous one; to an eternal and final law;
namely, Christ who has been given us, and the covenant is trustworthy.
12. Have you not
read this which Isaiah says: “Hearken unto Me, hearken unto Me, my people;
and, ye kings, give ear unto Me: for a law shall go forth from Me, and My
judgment shall be for a light to the nations. My righteousness approaches
swiftly, and My salvation shall go forth, and nations shall trust in Mine
13. And by
Jeremiah, concerning this same new covenant, He speaks thus: “Behold, the days
comes, saith the Lord, that I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel
and with the house of Judah; not according to the covenant which I made with
their fathers, in the day that I took them by the hand, to bring them out of the
land of Egypt”.
God proclaimed a new covenant, which was to be instituted, and this for a light
of the nations, we see and are persuaded that men approach God, leaving their
idols and other unrighteousness, through the name of Him who was crucified,
Jesus Christ, and abide by their confession even unto death, and maintain piety.
the works and by the attendant miracles, it is possible for all to understand
that He is the new law, and the new covenant, and the expectation of those who
out of every people wait for the good things of God.
For the true
spiritual Israel, and descendants of Judah, Jacob, Isaac, and Abraham, are we
who have been led to God through this crucified Christ, as shall be demonstrated
while we proceed.
17. I also adduced
another passage in which Isaiah exclaims: "Hear My words, and your soul
shall live; and I will make an everlasting covenant with you, even the sure
mercies of David. Behold, I have given Him for a witness to the people:
18. Nations which
know not Thee shall call on Thee; peoples who know not Thee, shall escape to
Thee, because of thy God, the Holy One of Israel; for He has glorified Thee.”
This same law you have despised, and His new holy covenant you have
slighted; and now you neither receive it, nor repent of your evil deeds.
For your ears
are closed, your eyes are blinded, and the heart is hardened.
Jeremiah has cried; yet not even then do you listen. The Lawgiver is
present, yet you do not see Him; the Gospel is preached to the poor; the blind
see; yet you do not understand.
20. You have need
of a second circumcision, yet you glory in the flesh. The new law requires you
to keep a perpetual sabbath, and you, being idle for one day, suppose that you
are pious, not discerning why this has been commanded you: and when you eat
unleavened bread you say the will of God has been fulfilled.
But the Lord
our God does not take pleasure in such observances: if there is any false person
or a thief among you, let him cease to be so; and if any adulterer, let him
repent; it is then that he will keep the sweet and true sabbath’s of God. If
any one has impure hands, let him wash and be pure.
Isaiah teaches that sins are
forgiven through Christ's blood.
22. For Isaiah did
not send you to a bath, there to wash away murder and other sins, which not even
all the water of the sea is sufficient to purge; but as might have been
expected, this was that saving bath of the olden time which followed those who
repented, and who no longer were purified by the blood of goats and of sheep, or
by the ashes of an heifer, or by the offerings of fine flour.
23. But by faith
through the blood of Christ, and through His death, who died for this very
reason, as Isaiah himself said, when he spoke thus: 'The Lord shall make bare
His holy arm in the eyes of all the nations, and all the nations and the ends of
the earth shall see the salvation of God.
depart ye, go ye out from thence, and touch no unclean thing; go ye out of the
midst of her, be ye clean that bear the vessels of the Lord, for ye go not with
haste. For the Lord shall go before you; and the Lord, the God of Israel, shall
gather you together.
25. Behold, my
servant shall deal prudently; and He shall be exalted, and be greatly glorified.
As many were astonished at Thee, so Thy form and Thy glory shall be marred more
than men. So shall many nations be astonished at Him, and the kings shall shut
26. For that which
had not been told them concerning Him they shall see, and that which they had
not heard they shall consider. Lord, who hath believed our report? And to whom
is the arm of the Lord revealed? We have announced Him as a child before Him, as
a root in a dry ground.
He hath no form
or comeliness, and when we saw Him He had no form or beauty; but His form was
dishonored more than the sons of men. He is a man in affliction, and acquainted
with bearing sickness, because His face has been turned away; He was despised,
and we esteemed Him not.
He bears our
sins, and is distressed for us; and we esteemed Him to be in toil and in
affliction, and in evil treatment But He was wounded for our transgressions, He
was bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement of our peace was upon Him. With
His stripes we are healed.
29. All we, like
sheep, have gone astray. Every man has turned to his own way; and the Lord laid
on Him our iniquities, and by reason of His oppression He opened not His mouth.
He was brought as a sheep to the slaughter; and as a lamb before her shearer is
dumb, so He opened not His mouth.
30. In His
humiliation our judgment was taken away. And who shall declare His generation?
For His life is taken from the earth. Because of the transgressions of my people
He came unto death. And I will give the wicked for His grave, and the rich for
31. Because He
committed no iniquity, and no deceit was found in His mouth. He shall bear our
sins; therefore He shall inherit many, and shall divide the spoil of the strong,
because His soul was delivered to death; and He was numbered with the
transgressors, and He bare the sins of many, and was delivered for their
32. Sing, O barren,
who bore not; break forth and cry aloud who did not travail in pain: for more
are the children of the desolate than the children of the married wife. For the
Lord said, enlarge the place of thy tent and of thy curtains; fix them, spare
not, lengthen thy cords, and strengthen thy stakes; stretch forth to thy right
and thy left; and thy seed shall inherit the Gentiles, and thou shalt make the
desolate cities to be inherited.
because thou art ashamed, neither be thou confounded because thou hast been
reproached; for thou shalt forget everlasting shame, and shalt not remember the
reproach of thy widowhood, because the Lord has made a name for Himself, and He
who has redeemed thee shall be called through the whole earth the God of Israel.
34. The Lord has
called thee as a woman forsaken and grieved in spirit, as a woman hated from her
youth.' By reason, therefore, in this repentance and knowledge of God, which has
been ordained on account of the transgression of God's people, as Isaiah said,
we have believed, and testify that this baptism alone is able to purify those
who have repented; and, this is the water of life.
35. But the
cisterns which you have dug for yourselves are broken and profitless to you. For
what is the use of that baptism which cleanses the flesh and body alone? Baptize
the soul from wrath and from covetousness, from envy, and from hatred; and, lo!
The body is pure.
this is the symbolic significance of unleavened bread, that you do not commit
the old deeds of wicked leaven.
But you have understood all things in a carnal sense, and you suppose it to be
piety if you do such things, while your souls are filled with deceit, and with
also, after the seven days of eating unleavened bread, God commanded them to
mingle new leaven, that is, the performance of other works, and not the
imitation of the old and evil works. And because this is what this new Lawgiver
demands of you.
I shall again
refer to the words, which have been quoted by me, and to others, which have been
passed over. They are related by Isaiah as follows: '”Hearken to me, and your
soul shall live; and I will make with you an everlasting covenant, even the sure
mercies of David.
39. Behold, I have
given Him for a witness to the people, a leader and commander to the nations.
Nations, which knew not Him, shall call on Him; and peoples who know not Thee
shall escape unto Thee, because of Thy God, the Holy One of Israel, for He has
Seek ye God;
and when you find Him, call on Him, so long as He may be near to you. Let the
wicked forsake his ways, and the unrighteous man his thoughts; and let him
return unto the Lord, and he will obtain mercy, because He will abundantly
pardon your sins.
41. For my thoughts
are not as your thoughts, neither are my ways as your ways; but as far removed
as the heavens are from the earth, so far is my way removed from your way, and
your thoughts from my thoughts.
42. For as the snow
or the rain descends from heaven, and shall not return till it waters the earth,
and makes it bring forth and bud, and gives seed to him that sows and bread for
food, so shall My word be that goes forth out of My mouth: it shall not return
until it shall have accomplished all that I desired, and I shall make My
For ye shall go
out with joy, and be taught with gladness. For the mountains and the hills shall
leap while they expect you, and all the trees of the fields shall applaud with
their branches: and instead of the thorn shall come up the cypress, and instead
of the brier shall come up the myrtle. And
the Lord shall be for a name, and for an everlasting sign, and He shall not
Of these and
such like words written by the prophets, O Trypho, said I, some have reference
to the first advent of Christ, in which He is preached as inglorious, obscure,
and of mortal appearance: But
others had reference to His second advent, when He shall appear in glory and
above the clouds; and your nation shall see and know Him whom they have pierced,
as Hosea, one of the twelve prophets, and Daniel, foretold.
what the true fasting consists.
therefore, to keep the true fast of God, as Isaiah says, that you may please
God. Isaiah said thus:
'Shout vehemently, and do not spare: lift up thy voice as with a trumpet,
and show My people their transgressions, and the house of Jacob their sins.
2. They seek Me
from day to day, and desire to know My ways, as a nation that did righteousness,
and forsook not the judgment of God. They ask of Me righteous judgment, and
desire to draw near to God, saying, Wherefore have we fasted, and Thou see it
not? And afflicted our souls, and Thou hast not known?
3. Because in the
days of your fasting you find your own pleasure, and oppress all those who are
subject to you. Behold, ye fast for strife and debates, and smite the humble
with your fists. Why do ye fast for Me, in this way, so that your voice is heard
(But) Is not
this the fast which I have chosen, a day in which a man shall afflict his soul?
For not even if you bend your neck like a ring, or clothe yourself in sackcloth
and ashes, shall you call this a fast, and a day acceptable to the Lord.
5. This is not the
fast which I have chosen, saith the Lord; but to loosen every unrighteous bond,
to dissolve the terms of wrong covenants, to let the oppressed go free, and
avoid every iniquitous contract. Deal thy bread to the hungry, and lead the
homeless poor under thy dwelling; if thou see the naked, clothe him; and do not
hide thyself from thine own flesh.
6. Then shall thy
light break forth as the morning, and thy garments shall rise up quickly: and
thy righteousness shall go before thee, and the glory of God shall envelope
thee. Then shalt thou cry, and the Lord shall hear thee: while thou art
speaking, He will say, Behold, I am here.
7. And if thou
take away from thee the yoke, and the stretching out of the hand, and the word
of murmuring; and shalt give heartily thy bread to the hungry, and shalt satisfy
the afflicted soul; then shall thy light arise in the darkness, and thy darkness
shall be as the noon-day:
8. And thy God
shall be with thee continually, and thou shalt be satisfied according as thy
soul desires, and thy bones shall become fat, and shall be as a watered garden,
and as a fountain of water, or as a land where water fails not.' 'Circumcise,
therefore, the foreskin of your heart,' as the words of God in all these
Circumcision given as a sign
9. And God himself
proclaimed by Moses, speaking thus: 'circumcise the hardness of your hearts, and
no longer stiffen the neck. For the Lord your God is both Lord of lords, and a
great, mighty, and terrible God, who regards not persons, and take not rewards.'
10. And in
Leviticus: 'Because they have transgressed against Me, and despised Me, and
because they have walked contrary to Me, I also walked contrary to them, and I
shall cut them off in the land of their enemies. Then shall their uncircumcised
heart be turned.'
circumcision according to the flesh, which is from Abraham, was given for a
sign; that you may be separated from other nations, and from us; and that you
alone may suffer that which you now justly suffer; and that your land may be
desolate, and your cities burned with fire; and that strangers may eat your
fruit in your presence, and not one of you may go up to Jerusalem.'
12. For you are not
recognized among the rest of men by any other mark than your fleshly
circumcision. For none of you, I suppose, will venture to say that God neither
did not foresee the events, which are future, nor fore-ordained each one’s
these things have happened to you in fairness and justice, for you have slain
the Just One, and His prophets before Him; and now you reject those who hope in
Him, and in Him who sent Him--God the Almighty and Maker of all things--cursing
in your synagogues those that believe on Christ.
For you have
not the power to lay hands upon us, on account of those who now have the
mastery. But as often as you could, you did so. Wherefore God, by Isaiah, calls
to you, saying, 'Behold how the righteous man perished, and no one regards it.
15. For the
righteous man is taken away from before iniquity. His grave shall be in peace,
he is taken away from the midst. Draw near, ye lawless children, seed of the
adulterers, and children of the whore. Against whom have you sported yourselves,
and against whom have you opened the mouth, and against whom have you loosened
The Jews inflamed against the
nations have not inflicted on us and on Christ this wrong to such an extent as
you have, who indeed are the authors of the wicked prejudice against the Just
One, and us who hold by Him whom you crucified, the only blameless and righteous
stripes those who approach the Father are healed, --when you knew that He had
risen from the dead and ascended to heaven, as the prophets foretold that He
18. And you not
only do not repent of the wickedness which you have committed, but at that time
you selected and sent out from Jerusalem chosen men through all the land to tell
that the godless heresy of the Christians had sprung up, and to publish those
things, which they who knew us did not speak against us.
So that you are
the cause not only of your own unrighteousness, but in fact of that of all other
men. And Isaiah cries justly: 'By reason of you, My name is blasphemed among the
Gentiles.' And: 'Woe unto their soul! Because they have devised an evil device
against themselves, saying, Let us bind the righteous, for he is distasteful to
shall eat the fruit of their doings. Woe unto the wicked, evil shall be rendered
to him according to the works of his hands.' And again, in other words: 'Woe
unto them that draw their iniquity as with a long cord, and their transgressions
as with the harness of a heifer's yoke: who say, Let His time come near; and let
the counsel of the Holy One of Israel come, that we may know it.
21. Woe unto them
that call evil good, and good evil; that put light for darkness, and darkness
for light; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!' Accordingly, you
displayed great zeal in publishing throughout all the land bitter and dark and
unjust things against the only blameless and righteous Light sent by God.
For He appeared
distasteful to you when He cried among you, 'It is written, My house is the
house of prayer; but ye have made it a den of thieves!' He overthrew also the
tables of the money-changers in the temple, and exclaimed,
23. Woe unto you,
Scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! Because ye pay tithe of mint and rue, but do
not observe the love of God and justice. Ye white sepulchres! Appearing
beautiful outward, but are within full of dead men's bones.'
24. And to the
Scribes, 'Woe unto you, Scribes! For ye have the keys, and ye do not enter in
yourselves, and them that are entering in ye hinder; ye blind guides!'
1. "For since
you have read, O Trypho, as you yourself admitted, the doctrines taught by our
Savior, I do not think that I have done foolishly in adding some short
utterances of His to the prophetic statements. Wash therefore, and be now clean,
and put away iniquity from your souls, as God bids you be washed in this layer,
and be circumcised with the true circumcision.
2. For we too
would observe the fleshly circumcision, and the Sabbaths, and in short all the
feasts, if we did not know for what reason they were enjoined to you, --namely,
on account of your transgressions and the hardness of your hearts.
3. For if we
patiently endure all things contrived against us by wicked men and demons, so
that even amid cruelties unutterable, death and torments, we pray for mercy to
those who inflict such things upon us, and do not wish to give the least retort
to any one, even as the new Lawgiver commanded us:
4. How is it,
Trypho that we would not have observed those rites, which do not harm us, - I am
speaking of fleshly circumcision, and Sabbath’s, and feasts.
"It is this about which we are at a loss, and with reason, because,
while you endure such things, you do not observe all the other customs which we
are now discussing.
circumcision is not however, necessary for all men, but for you alone, in order
that, as I have already said, you may suffer these things, which you now justly
suffer. Nor do we receive that useless baptism of
cisterns, for it has nothing to do with this baptism of life.
6. Wherefore also
God has announced that you have forsaken Him, the living fountain, and dug for
your selves broken cisterns, which can hold no water. Even you,
who are the circumcised according to the flesh, have need of our circumcision; but
we, having the latter, do not require the former.
For if it were
necessary, as you suppose, God would not have made Adam uncircumcised, nor would
He have had respect to the gifts of Abel when, being uncircumcised, he offered
sacrifice. Nor would He have been
pleased with the un-circumcision of Enoch, who was not found, because God had
8. Lot, being
uncircumcised, was saved from Sodom, the angels themselves and the Lord sending
him out. Noah was the beginning of our race; yet, uncircumcised along with his
children he went into the ark. Melchizedek, the priest of the Most High, was
9. To whom also
Abraham the first who received circumcision after the flesh, gave tithes, and he
blessed him: after whose order God declared, by the mouth of David, that He
would establish the everlasting priest. Therefore to you alone this circumcision
was necessary, in order that the people may be no people, and the nation no
nation; as also Hosea, one of the twelve prophets, declares.
10. Moreover, all
those righteous men already mentioned, though they kept no sabbath’s, were
pleasing to God; and after them Abraham with all his descendants until Moses,
under whom your nation appeared unrighteous and ungrateful to God, making a calf
in the wilderness:
11. Wherefore God,
accommodating Himself to that nation, enjoined them also to offer sacrifices, as
if to His name, in order that you might not serve idols. Which precept, however,
you have not observed; nay, you sacrificed your children to demons.
12. And you were
commanded to keep sabbath’s, that you might retain the memorial of God. For
His word makes this announcement, saying, 'That ye may know that I am God who
were commanded to abstain from certain kinds of food, in order that you might
keep God before your eyes while you ate and drank, seeing that you were prone
and very ready to depart from His knowledge, as Moses also affirms: 'The people
ate and drank, and rose up to play.'
14. And again:
'Jacob ate, and was satisfied, and waxed fat; and he who was beloved kicked: he
waxed fat, he grew thick, he was enlarged, and he forsook God who had made him.'
For it was told you by Moses in the book of Genesis, that God granted to Noah,
being a just man, to eat of every animal, but not of flesh with the blood, which
15. And as he was
ready to say, "as the green herbs," I anticipated him: Why do you not
receive this statement, 'as the green herbs,' in the sense in which it was given
by God, to wit, that just as God has granted the herbs for sustenance to man,
even so has He given the animals for the diet of flesh.
16. But, you say, a
distinction was laid down thereafter to Noah, because we do not eat certain
herbs. As you interpret it, the thing is incredible. And first I shall not
occupy myself with this, though able to say and to hold that every vegetable is
food, and fit to be eaten.
17. But although we
discriminate between green herbs, not eating all, we refrain from eating some,
not because they are common or unclean, but because they are bitter, or deadly,
or thorny. But we lay hands on and take of all herbs, which are sweet, very
nourishing and good, whether they are marine or land plants.
Thus also God
by the mouth of Moses commanded you to abstain from unclean and improper and
violent animals: when, moreover, though you were eating manna in the desert, and
were seeing all those wondrous acts wrought for you by God, you made and
worshipped the golden calf. Hence he cries continually, and justly, 'they are
foolish children, in whom is no faith.
were instituted on account of the people's sins
19. Moreover, that
God enjoined you to keep the Sabbath, and impose on you other precepts for a
sign, as I have already said, on account of your unrighteousness, and that of
your fathers, --as He declares that for the sake of the nations, lest His name
be profaned among them, therefore He permitted some of you to remain alive,
--these words of His can prove to you: they are narrated by Ezekiel thus:
I am the Lord
your God; walk in My statutes, and keep My judgments, and take no part in the
customs of Egypt; and hallow My Sabbaths; and they shall be a sign between you,
and Me that ye may know that I am the Lord your God.
ye rebelled against Me, and your children walked not in My statutes, neither
kept My judgments to do them: which if a man do, he shall live in them. But they
polluted My Sabbaths. And I said that I would pour out My fury upon them in the
wilderness, to accomplish My anger upon them; yet I did it not; that My name
might not be altogether profaned in the sight of the heathen.
22. I led them out
before their eyes, and I lifted up Mine hand unto them in the wilderness, that I
would scatter them among the heathen, and disperse them through the countries;
because they had not executed My judgments, but had despised My statutes, and
polluted My Sabbaths, and their eyes were after the devices of their fathers.
23. Wherefore I
gave them also statutes, which were not good, and judgments whereby they shall
not live. And I shall pollute them in their own gifts, that I may destroy all
that opens the womb, when I pass through them.
And that you
may learn that it was for the sins of your own nation, and for their idolatries
and not because there was any necessity for such sacrifices, that they were
likewise enjoined, listen to the manner in which He speaks of these by Amos, one
of the twelve, saying:
Woe unto you
that desire the day of the Lord! To what end is this day of the Lord for you? It
is darkness and not light, as when a man flees from the face of a lion, and a
bear meets him; and he goes into his house, and leans his hands against the
wall, and the serpent bites him.
26. Shall not the
day of the Lord be darkness and not light, even very dark, and no brightness in
it? I have hated, I have despised your feast-days, and I will not smell in your
solemn assemblies: wherefore, though ye offer Me your burnt offerings and
sacrifices, I will not accept them; neither will I regard the peace offerings of
27. Take away from
Me the multitude of thy songs and psalms; I will not hear thine instruments. But
let judgment roll down as water, and righteousness as an impassable torrent.
Have ye offered unto Me victuals and sacrifices in the wilderness, O house of
Israel, saith the Lord. And did ye not take up the tabernacle of moloch, and the
star of your god raphan, the figures which ye made for yourselves?
I will carry
you away beyond Damascus, saith the Lord, whose name is the Almighty God. Woe to
them that are at ease in Zion, and trust in the mountain of Samaria: Those that
are named among the chiefs have plucked away the first-fruits of the nations,
and entered it for themselves.
Pass all of you
unto Calneh, and see; and from there go unto hamath the great, and from there to
Gath of the strangers, the noblest of all these kingdoms, if their boundaries
are greater than your boundaries. Ye who come to the evil day, who approach, and
hold to false Sabbaths; who lie on beds of ivory, and are at ease upon their
30. You who eat the
lambs out of the flock, and the sucking calves out of the midst of the herd; who
applaud at the sound of the musical instruments; they reckon them as stable, and
not as fleeting that drink wine in bowls, and anoint themselves with the chief
ointments, but they are not grieved for the affliction of Joseph.
they shall be captives, among the first of the nobles who are carried away; and
the house of evil-doers shall be removed, and the neighing of horses shall be
taken away from Ephraim. And again by Jeremiah: 'Collect your flesh, and
sacrifices, and eat:
32. For I did not
command your fathers in the day in which I took them by the hand to lead them
out of Egypt concerning neither sacrifices nor libations. And again by David, in
the forty-ninth Psalm, He thus said: 'The God of gods, the Lord hath spoken, and
called the earth, from the rising of the sun unto the going down thereof.
33. Out of Zion is
the perfection of His beauty. God, even our God, shall come openly, and shall
not keep silence. Fire shall burn before Him, and it shall be very tumultuous
round about Him. He shall call to the heavens above, and to the earth, that He
may judge His people.
34. Assemble to Him
His saints; those that have made a covenant with Him by sacrifice. And the
heavens shall declare His righteousness, for God is judge. Hear, O My people,
and I will speak to thee; O Israel, and I will testify to thee, I am God, even
I will not
reprove thee for thy sacrifices; thy burnt-offerings are continually before me.
I will take no bullocks out of thy house, nor he-goats out of thy folds: for all
the beasts of the field are Mine, the herds and the oxen on the mountains.
I know all the
fowls of the heavens, and the beauty of the field is Mine. If I were hungry, I
would not tell thee; for the world is Mine, and the fullness thereof. Will I eat
the flesh of bulls, or drink the blood of goats?
Offer unto God
the sacrifice of praise, and pay thy vows unto the Most High, and call upon Me
in the day of trouble, and I will deliver thee, and thou shalt glorify Me.
But unto the
wicked God saith, what hast thou to do to declare My statutes, and to take My
covenant into thy mouth? You have
hated instruction, and cast My words behind thee. When thou saw a thief, thou
consented with him; and has been a partaker with the adulterer.
Thy mouth has
framed evil, and thy tongue has enfolded deceit. Thou sit and speak against thy
brother; thou does slander thine own mother's son. These things have thou done,
and I kept silence; You thought that I was like thyself in wickedness.
I will reprove
thee, and set thy sins in order before thine eyes. Now consider this, ye that
forget God, lest He tear you in pieces, and there be none to deliver. The
sacrifice of praise shall glorify Me; and there is the way in which I shall show
him My salvation.
41. Accordingly He
neither takes sacrifices from you nor commanded them at first to be offered
because they are needful to Him, but because of your sins.
42. For indeed the
temple, which is called the temple in Jerusalem, He admitted to be His house or
court, not as though He needed it, but in order that you, in this view of it,
giving yourselves to Him, might not worship idols.
43. And that this
is so, Isaiah says: 'what house have ye built Me? Saith the Lord. Heaven is My
throne, and earth is My footstool.'
1. But if we do
not admit this, we shall be liable to fall into foolish opinions, as if it were
not the same God who existed in the times of Enoch and all the rest, who neither
were circumcised after the flesh, nor observed Sabbaths, nor any other rites,
seeing that Moses enjoined such observances; or that God has not wished each
race of mankind continually to perform the same righteous actions: to admit
which, seems to be ridiculous and absurd.
2. Therefore we
must confess that He, who is ever the same, has commanded these and such like
institutions on account of sinful men, and we must declare Him to be benevolent,
foreknowing, needing nothing, righteous and good.
3. But if this be
not so, tell me, sir, what you think of those matters which we are
investigating." And when no one responded: "Wherefore, Trypho, I will
proclaim to you, and to those who wish to become proselytes, the divine message
which I heard from that man.
4. Do you see that
the elements are not idle, and keep no sabbath’s, but remain as they were
born? For if there was no need of circumcision before Abraham, or observance of
sabbath’s, of feasts and of sacrifices before Moses; no more need is there of
them now, after that, according to the will of God, Jesus Christ the Son of God
has been born without sin, of a virgin sprung from the stock of Abraham.
5. For when
Abraham himself was not circumcised, he was justified and blessed by reason of
the faith, which he reposed in God, as the Scripture tells. Moreover, the
Scriptures and the facts themselves compel us to admit that He received
circumcision for a sign, and not for righteousness.
6. So that it was
justly recorded concerning the people, that the soul, which shall not be
circumcised on the eighth day, shall be cut off from his family. And,
furthermore, the inability of the female sex to receive fleshly circumcision,
proves that this circumcision has been given for a sign, and not for a work of
For God has
given likewise to women the ability to observe all things which are righteous
and virtuous; but we see that the bodily form of the male has been made
different from the bodily form of the female; yet we know that neither of them
is righteous or unrighteous merely for this cause, but [is considered righteous]
by reason of piety and righteousness.
· The Christian circumcision far more
Now, sirs, I
said, it is possible for us to show how the eighth day possessed a certain
mysterious import, which the seventh day did not possess, and which was
promulgated by God through these rites. But lest I appear now to diverge to
other subjects, understand what I say: the blood of that circumcision is
obsolete, and we trust in the blood of salvation.
There is now
another covenant, and another law has gone forth from Zion. Jesus Christ
circumcises all who will--as was declared above--with knives of stone; that they
may be a righteous nation, a people keeping faith, holding to the truth, and
10. Come then with
me, all who fear God, who wish to see the good of Jerusalem. Come, let us go to
the light of the Lord; for He has liberated His people, the house of Jacob.
Come, all nations; let us gather ourselves together at Jerusalem, no longer
plagued by war for the sins of her people.
11. For I was
manifest to them that sought Me not; I was found of them that asked not for Me;
He exclaims by Isaiah: Behold Me,
unto nations which were not called by My name. I have spread out My hands all
the day unto a disobedient and gainsaying people, which walked in a way that was
not good, but after their own sins.
12. It is a people
that revoked Me to my face. Those
who justify themselves, and say they are sons of Abraham, shall be desirous even
in a small degree to receive the inheritance along with you; as the Holy Spirit,
by the mouth of Isaiah, cries, speaking thus while he personates them:
heaven, and behold from the habitation of Thy holiness and glory. Where is Thy
zeal and strength? Where is the multitude of Thy mercy? for Thou hast sustained
us, O Lord. For Thou art our Father, because Abraham is ignorant of us, and
Israel has not recognized us.
14. But Thou, O
Lord, our Father, deliver us: from the beginning Thy name is upon us. O Lord,
why hast Thou made us to err from Thy way? And hardened our hearts, so that we
do not fear Thee? Return for Thy servants' sake, the tribes of Thine
inheritance, that we may inherit for a little Thy holy mountain.
15. We were as from
the beginning, when Thou didst not bear rule over us, and when Thy name was not
called upon us. If Thou wilt open the heavens, trembling shall seize the
mountains before Thee: and they shall be melted, as wax melts before the fire;
and fire shah consume the adversaries, and Thy name shall be manifest among the
adversaries; the nations shall be put into disorder before Thy face.
16. When Thou shall
do glorious things, trembling shall seize the mountains before Thee. From the
beginning we have not heard, nor have our eyes seen a God besides Thee: and Thy
works, the mercy, which Thou shall show to those who repent. He shall meet those
who do righteousness, and they shall remember Thy ways.
art wroth, and we were sinning. Therefore we have erred and become all unclean,
and all our righteousness is as the rags of a woman set apart: and we have faded
away like leaves by reason of our iniquities; thus the wind will take us away.
And there is
none that calls upon Thy name, or remembers to take hold of Thee; for Thou hast
turned away Thy face from us, and hast given us up on account of our sins. And
now return, O Lord, for we are all Thy people. The city of Thy holiness has
Zion has become
as a wilderness, Jerusalem a curse; the house, our holiness, and the glory which
our fathers blessed has been burned with fire; and all the glorious nations have
fallen along with it. And in addition to these O Lord, Thou hast refrained
Thyself, and art silent, and hast humbled us very much.'
remarked, What is this you say? That none of us shall inherit anything on the
holy mountain of God? And I
replied, I do not say so; but those who have persecuted and do persecute Christ,
if they do not repent, shall not inherit anything on the holy mountain.
21. But the
Gentiles, who have believed on Him, and have repented of the sins, which they
have committed, they shall receive the inheritance along with the patriarchs and
the prophets, and the just men who are descended from Jacob, even though they
neither kept the Sabbath, nor are circumcised, nor observe the feasts.
22. Assuredly they
shall receive the holy inheritance of God. For God spoke thus by Isaiah: 'I, the
Lord God, have called Thee in righteousness, and will hold Thine hand, and will
strengthen Thee; and I have given Thee for a covenant of the people, for a light
of the Gentiles, to open the eyes of the blind, to bring out them that are bound
from the chains, and those who sit in darkness from the prison-house.
23. And again:
'Lift up a standard for the people; for, lo the Lord has made it heard unto the
end of the earth. Say to the daughters of Zion, Behold, thy Savior has come;
having His reward, and His work before His face: and He shall call it a holy
nation, redeemed by the Lord.
And thou shalt
be called a city sought out, and not forsaken. Who is this that comes from Edom,
in red garments from Bosor? He who
is beautiful in apparel, going up with great strength? I speak righteousness,
and the judgment of salvation.
25. Why are Thy
garments red, and Thine apparel as from the trodden winepress? Thou art full of
the trodden grape. I have trodden the winepress all alone, and of the people
there is no man with Me; and I have trampled them in fury, and crushed them to
the ground, and spilled their blood on the earth.
26. For the day of
retribution has come upon them, and the year of redemption is present. And I
looked, and there was none to help; and I considered, and none assisted: and My
arm delivered; and My fury came on them, and I trampled them in My fury, and
spilled their blood on the earth.
said, Why do you select and quote whatever you wish from the prophetic writings,
but do not refer to those which expressly command the Sabbath to be observed?
For Isaiah speaks thus:
'If thou shalt
turn away thy foot from the Sabbaths, so as not to do thy pleasure on the holy
day, and shalt call the Sabbaths the holy delights of thy God; if thou shalt not
lift thy foot to work, and shalt not speak a word from thine own mouth; then
thou shalt trust in the Lord, and He shall cause thee to go up to the good
things of the land; and He shall feed thee with the inheritance of Jacob thy
father: for the mouth of the Lord hath spoken it.'
29. And I replied,
I have passed them by, my friends, not because such prophecies were contrary to
me, but because you have understood, and do understand, that although God
commands you by all the prophets to do the same things which He also commanded
It was on
account of the hardness of your hearts, and your ingratitude towards Him, that
He continually proclaims them, in order that, even in this way, if you repented,
you might please Him, and neither sacrifice your children to demons, nor be
partakers with thieves, nor lovers of gifts, nor hunters after revenge, nor fail
in doing judgment for orphans, nor be inattentive to the justice due to the
widow nor have your hands full of blood.
31. For the
daughters of Zion have walked with a high neck, both sporting by winking with
their eyes, and sweeping along their dresses. For they are all gone aside,' He
exclaims, 'they are all become useless. There is none that understands, there is
not so much as one.
32. With their
tongues they practice deceit, their throat is an open sepulcher, the poison of
asps is under their lips, destruction and misery are in their paths, and the way
of peace they have not known.' So that, as in the beginning, these things were
enjoined you because of your wickedness, in like manner because of your
steadfastness in it, or rather your increased proneness to it, by means of the
same precepts He calls you to a remembrance or knowledge of it.
But you are a
people hard-hearted and without understanding, both blind and lame, children in
whom is no faith, as He Himself says, honoring Him only with your lips, but far
from Him in your hearts, teaching doctrines that are your own and not His.
34. For, tell me,
did God wish the priests to sin when they offer the sacrifices on the Sabbaths?
Or those to sin, who are circumcised and do circumcise on the Sabbaths; since He
commands that on the eighth day--even though it happen to be a Sabbath--those
who are born shall be always circumcised?
35. Or could not
the infants be operated upon one day previous or one day subsequent to the
Sabbath, if He knew that it is a sinful act upon the Sabbaths? Or why did He not
teach those--who are called righteous and pleasing to Him, who lived before
Moses and Abraham, who were not circumcised in their foreskin, and observed no
Sabbaths--to keep these institutions?
36. And Trypho
replied, We heard you adducing this consideration a little ago, and we have
given it attention: for, to tell the truth, it is worthy of attention; and that
answer which pleases most--namely, that so it seemed good to Him--does not
satisfy me. For this is ever the shift to which those have recourse who are
unable to answer the question.
37. Then I said,
Since I bring from the Scriptures and the facts themselves both the proofs and
the inculcation of them, do not delay or hesitate to put faith in me, although I
am an uncircumcised man; so short a time is left you in which to become
38. If Christ's
coming is in anticipation of you, you will repent in vain, and you will weep in
vain; for He will not hear you. But break up your fallow ground,' so Jeremiah
cried to the people, 'and sow not among thorns. Circumcise yourselves to the
Lord, and circumcise the foreskin of your heart.'
Do not sow,
therefore, among thorns, and in untilled ground, whence you can have no fruit.
Know Christ; and behold the fallow ground, good and fat is in your hearts. 'For,
behold, the days come, saith the Lord, that I will visit all them that are
circumcised in their foreskins, Egypt, Judah, Edom, and the sons of Moab.
40. For all the
nations are uncircumcised, and all the house of Israel are uncircumcised in
their hearts.' Do you see how that God does not mean this circumcision, which is
given for a sign? For it is of no use to the Egyptians, or the sons of Moab, or
the sons of Edom.
But though a
man be a Scythian or a Persian, if he has the knowledge of God and of His
Christ, and keeps the everlasting righteous decrees, he is circumcised with the
good and useful circumcision, and is a friend of God, and God rejoices in his
gifts and offerings.
But I will lay
before you, my friends, the very words of God, when He said to the people by
Malachi, one of the twelve prophets, 'I have no pleasure in you, saith the Lord;
and I shall not accept your sacrifices at your hands: for from the rising of the
sun unto its setting My name shall be glorified among the Gentiles.
43. And in every
place a sacrifice is offered unto My name, even a pure sacrifice: for My name is
honored among the Gentiles, saith the Lord; but ye profane it.' And by David He
said, 'A people whom I have not known, served Me; at the hearing of the ear they
Let us glorify
God, for He has also visited us. Let us glorify Him by the King of glory, by the
Lord of hosts. For He has been gracious towards the Gentiles also; and our
sacrifices He esteems more grateful than yours. What need, then, have I of
circumcision, who have been witnessed to by God?
2. What need have
I of that other baptism, who have been baptized with the Holy Ghost? I think
that while I mention this, I would persuade even those who are possessed of
scanty intelligence. For these words have neither been prepared by me, nor
embellished by the art of man;
3. Bt David sung
them, Isaiah preached them, Zechariah proclaimed them, and Moses wrote them. Are
you acquainted with them, Trypho? They are contained in your Scriptures, or
rather not yours, but ours. For we believe them; but you, though you read them,
do not catch the spirit that is in them.
4. Be not offended
at, or reproach us with, the bodily un-circumcision with which God has created
us; and think it not strange that we drink hot water on the Sabbaths, since God
directs the government of the universe on this day equally as on all others.
5. And the priests
likewise are ordered to offer sacrifices on this day as on other days, and there
are many righteous men who have performed none of these legal ceremonies, and
yet are witnessed to by God Himself
But impute it
to your own wickedness, that God can be accused by those who have no
understanding, of not having always instructed all in the same righteous
statutes. For such institutions seemed to be unreasonable and unworthy of God to
many men, who had not received grace to know that your nation were called to
7. And of
repentance of spirit, while they were in a sinful condition and laboring under a
spiritual disease; and that the prophecy which was announced subsequent to the
death of Moses is everlasting. And this is mentioned in the Psalm, my friends.
8. And that we,
who have been made wise by them, confess that the statutes of the Lord are
sweeter than honey and the honeycomb, is manifest
from the fact that, though threatened with death, we do not deny His name.
9. Moreover, it is
also manifest to all, that we who believe in Him pray to be kept by Him from
strange, i.e., from wicked and deceitful, spirits; as the word of prophecy,
personating one of those who believe in Him, figuratively declares.
10. For we
continually beseech God by Jesus Christ to preserve us from the demons which are
hostile to the worship of God, and whom we of old time served, in order that,
after our conversion by Him to God, we may be blameless.
For we call Him
Helper and Redeemer, the power of whose name even the demons do fear; and at
this day, when they are exorcised in the name of Jesus Christ, crucified under
Pontius Pilate, governor of Judea, they are overcome.
12. And thus it is
manifest to all, that His Father has given Him so great power, by virtue of
which demons are subdued to His name, and to the dispensation of His suffering.
But if so great a power is shown to have followed and to be still
following the dispensation of His suffering, how great shall that be which shall
follow His glorious advent!
13. For He shall
come on the clouds as the Son of man, so Daniel foretold, and His angels shall
come with Him. These are the words: 'I beheld till the thrones were set; and the
Ancient of days did sit, whose garment was white as snow, and the hair of His
head like the pure wool.
14. His throne was
like a fiery flame, His wheels as burning fire. A fiery stream issued and came
forth from before Him. Thousand thousands ministered unto Him, and ten thousand
times ten thousand stood before Him. The books were opened, and the judgment was
15. I beheld the
voice of the great words, which the horn speaks: and the beast was beat down,
and his body destroyed, and given to the burning flame. And the rest of the
beasts were taken away from their dominion, and a period of life was given to
the beasts until a season and time.
16. I saw in the
vision of the night, and, behold, one like the Son of man coming with the clouds
of heaven; and He came to the Ancient of days, and stood before Him. And they
who stood by brought Him near; and there were given Him power and kingly honor,
and all nations of the earth by their families, and all glory, serve Him.
17. And His
dominion is an everlasting dominion, which shall not be taken away; and His
kingdom shall not be destroyed. And my spirit was chilled within my frame, and
the visions of my head troubled me. I came near unto one of them that stood by,
and inquired the precise meaning of all these things.
In answer he
spoke to me, and showed me the judgment: These great beasts are four kingdoms,
which shall perish from the earth, and shall not receive dominion for ever, even
forever and ever. Then I wished to know exactly about the fourth beast, which
destroyed all and was very terrible, its teeth of iron, and its nails of brass;
which devoured, made waste, and stamped the residue with its feet:
19. And also about
the ten horns upon its head, and of the one, which came up, by means of which
three of the former fell. And that horn had eyes, and a mouth speaking great
things; and its countenance excelled the rest. And I beheld that horn waging war
against the saints, and prevailing against them, until the Ancient of days came;
and He gave judgment for the saints of the Most High.
20. And the time
came, and the saints of the Most High possessed the kingdom. And it was told me
concerning the fourth beast: There shall be a fourth kingdom upon earth, which
shall prevail over all these kingdoms, and shall devour the whole earth, and
shall destroy and make it thoroughly waste.
21. And the ten
horns are ten kings that shall arise; and one shall arise after them; and he
shall surpass the first in evil deeds, and he shall subdue three kings, and he
shall speak words against the Most High, and shall overthrow the rest of the
saints of the Most High, and shall expect to change the seasons and the times.
22. And it shall be
delivered into his hands for a time, and times, and half a time. And the
judgment sat, and they shall take away his dominion, to consume and to destroy
it unto the end.
23. And the
kingdom, and the power, and the great places of the kingdoms under the heavens,
were given to the holy people of the Most High, to reign in an everlasting
kingdom: and all powers shall be subject to Him, and shall obey Him.
Here is the end
of the matter. I, Daniel, was possessed with a very great astonishment, and my
speech was changed in me; yet I kept the matter in my heart.
25. And when I had
ceased, Trypho said, "These and such like Scriptures, sir, compel us to
wait for Him who, as Son of man, receives from the Ancient of days the
everlasting kingdom. But this so-called Christ of yours was dishonorable and
inglorious, so much so that the last curse contained in the law of God fell on
him, for he was crucified."
26. Then I replied
to him, "If, sirs, it were not said by the Scriptures which I have already
quoted, that His form was inglorious, and His generation not declared, and that
for His death the rich would suffer death, and with His stripes we should be
healed, and that He would be led away like a sheep.
27. And if I had
not explained that there would be two advents of His, --one in which He was
pierced by you; a second, when you shall know Him whom you have pierced, and
your tribes shall mourn, each tribe by itself, the women apart, and the men
apart, --then I must have been speaking dubious and obscure things.
28. But now, by
means of the contents of those Scriptures esteemed holy and prophetic amongst
you, I attempt to prove all in the hope that some one of you may be found to be
of that remnant which has been left by the grace of the Lord of Sabaoth for the
therefore, that the matter inquired into may be plainer to you, I will mention
to you other words also spoken by the blessed David, from which you will
perceive that the Lord is called the Christ by the Holy Spirit of prophecy;
30. And that the
Lord, the Father of all, has brought Him again from the earth, setting Him at
His own right hand, until He makes His enemies His footstool; which indeed
happens from the time that our Lord Jesus Christ ascended to heaven, after He
rose again from the dead, the times now running on to their consummation; and he
whom Daniel foretells would have dominion for a time, and times, and an half, is
even already at the door, about to speak blasphemous and daring things against
the Most High.
31. But you, being
ignorant of how long he will have dominion, hold another opinion. For you
interpret the 'time' as being a hundred years. But if this is so, the man of sin
must, at the shortest, reign three hundred and fifty years, in order that we may
compute that which is said by the holy Daniel 'and times' to be two times only.
32. All this I have
said to you in digression, in order that you at length may be persuaded of what
has been declared against you by God, that you are foolish sons; and of this,
'Therefore, behold, I will proceed to take away this people, and shall take them
away; and I will strip the wise of their wisdom, and will hide the understanding
of their prudent men;' and may cease to deceive yourselves and those who hear
you, and may learn of us, who have been taught wisdom by the grace of Christ.
33. The words,
then, which were spoken by David, are these:
'The Lord said unto My Lord, Sit Thou at My right hand, until I make
Thine enemies Thy footstool. The Lord shall send the rod of Thy strength out of
Sion: rule Thou also in the midst of Thine enemies.
34. With Thee shall
be, in the day, the chief of Thy power, in the beauties of Thy saints. From the
womb, before the morning star, have I begotten Thee. The Lord hath sworn, and
will not repent: Thou art a priest forever after the order of Melchizedek.
35. The Lord is at
Thy right hand: He has crushed kings in the day of His wrath: He shall judge
among the heathen, He shall fill the dead bodies. He shall drink of the brook in
the way; therefore shall He lift up the head.
36. And, I
continued, I am not ignorant that you venture to expound this psalm as if it
referred to king Hezekiah; but that you arc mistaken, I shall prove to you from
these very words forthwith. 'The Lord hath sworn, and will not repent,' it is
said; and, 'Thou art a priest for ever, after the order of Melchizedek,' with
what follows and precedes.
Not even you
will venture to object that Hezekiah was either a priest, or is the everlasting
priest of God; but that this is spoken of our Jesus, these expressions show it.
But your ears are shut up, and your hearts are made dull.
38. For by this
statement, 'The Lord hath sworn, and will not repent: Thou art a priest for
ever, after the order of Melchizedek,' with an oath God has shown Him (on
account of your unbelief) to be the High Priest after the order of Melchizedek;
i.e., as Melchizedek was described by Moses as the priest of the Most High, and
he was a priest of those who were uncircumcised.
39. And he blessed
the circumcised Abraham who brought him tithes, so God has shown that His
everlasting Priest, called also by the Hold Spirit Lord, would be Priest of
those not circumcised. Those too in circumcision who approach Him, that is,
believing Him and seeking blessings from Him, He will both receive and bless.
40. And that He
shall be first humble as a man, and then exalted, these words at the end of the
Psalm show: 'He shall drink of the brook in the way,' and then, 'Therefore shall
He lift up the head.
41. Further, to
persuade you that you have not understood anything of the Scriptures, I will
remind you of another psalm, dictated to David by the Holy Spirit, which you say
refers to Solomon, who was also your king. But it refers also to our Christ.
But you deceive
yourselves by the ambiguous forms of speech. For where it is said, 'The law of
the Lord is perfect,' you do not understand it of the law which was to be after
Moses, but of the law which was given by Moses, although God declared that He
would establish a new law and a new covenant.
43. And where it
has been said, 'O God, give Thy judgment to the king,' since Solomon was king,
you say that the Psalm refers to him, although the words of the Psalm expressly
proclaim that reference is made to the everlasting King, i.e., to Christ.
44. For Christ is
King, and Priest, and God, and Lord, and angel, and man, and captain, and stone,
and a Son born, and first made subject to suffering, then returning to heaven,
and again coming with glory, and He is preached as having the everlasting
kingdom: so I proved from all the Scriptures.
45. But that you
may perceive what I have said, I quote the words of the Psalm; they are these:
'O God, give Thy judgment to the king, and Thy righteousness unto the king's
son, to judge Thy people with righteousness, and Thy poor with judgment.
46. The mountains
shall take up peace to the people, and the little hills righteousness. He shall
judge the poor of the people, and shall save the children of the needy, and
shall abase the slanderer. He shall co-endure with the sun, and before the moon
unto all generations.
47. He shall come
down like rain upon the fleece, as drops falling on the earth. In His days shall
righteousness flourish, and abundance of peace until the moon be taken away. And
He shall have dominion from sea to sea, and from the rivers unto the ends of the
shall fall down before Him, and His enemies shall lick the dust. The kings of
Tarshish and the isles shall offer gifts; the kings of Arabia and Seba shall
offer gifts; and all the kings of the earth shall worship Him, and all the
nations shall serve Him:
49. For He has
delivered the poor from the man of power, and the needy that had no helper. He
shall spare the poor and needy, and shall save the souls of the needy: He shall
redeem their souls from usury and injustice, and His name shall be honorable
50. And He shall
live, and to Him shall be given of the gold of Arabia, and they shall pray
continually for Him: they shall bless Him all the day. And there shall be a
foundation on the earth, it shall be exalted on the tops of the mountains:
51. His fruit shall
be on Lebanon, and they of the city shall flourish like grass of the earth. His
name shall be blessed forever. His name shall endure before the sun; and all
tribes of the earth shall be blessed in Him, all nations shall call Him blessed.
Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel, who only doeth wondrous things; and
blessed be His glorious name forever, and forever and ever; and the whole earth
shall be filled with His glory. Amen, amen.'
52. And at the
close of this Psalm which I have quoted, it is written, 'The hymns of David the
son of Jesse are ended.' Moreover, that Solomon was a renowned and great king,
by whom the temple is called that, was built at Jerusalem, I know; but that none
of those things mentioned in the Psalm happened to him, is evident.
53. For neither did
all kings worship him; nor did he reign to the ends of the earth; nor did his
enemies, failing before him, lick the dust. Nay, also, I venture to repeat what
is written in the book of Kings as committed by him,
54. How through a
woman's influence he worshipped the idols of Sidon, which those of the Gentiles
who know God, the Maker of all things through Jesus the crucified, do not
venture to do, but abide every torture and vengeance even to the extremity of
death, rather than worship idols, or eat meat offered to idols.
Heretics confirm the Christians in
55. And Trypho
said, I believe, however, that many of those who say that they confess Jesus,
and are called Christians, eat meats offered to idols, and declare that they are
by no means injured in consequence.
56. And I replied,
The fact that there are such men confessing themselves to be Christians, and
admitting the crucified Jesus to be both Lord and Christ, yet not teaching His
doctrines, but those of the spirits of error, causes us who are disciples of the
true and pure doctrine of Jesus Christ, to be more faithful and steadfast in the
hope announced by Him.
For the things,
which He predicted to take place in His name, these we do see being accomplished
in our sight. For he said, 'Many shall come in My name, clothed outwardly in
sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves."
shall be schisms and heresies.' And, 'Beware of false prophets, who shall come
to you clothed outwardly in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening
wolves.' And, 'Many false Christ’s and false apostles shall arise, and shall
deceive many of the faithful.'
There are, and
there were therefore many my friends, who, coming forward in the name of Jesus,
taught both to speak and act impious and blasphemous things; and these are
called by us after the name of the men from whom each doctrine and opinion had
some in one way, others in another, teach to blaspheme the Maker of all things,
and Christ, who was foretold by Him as coming, and the God of Abraham, and of
Isaac, and of Jacob, with whom we have nothing in common, since we know them to
be atheists, impious, unrighteous, and sinful, and confessors of Jesus in name
only, instead of worshippers of Him.
61. Yet they style
themselves Christians, just as certain among the Gentiles inscribe the name of
God upon the works of their own hands, and partake in inferior and impious
rites. Some are called Marcians, and some Valentinians, and some Basilidians,
and some Saturnilians, and others by other names; each called after the
originator of the individual opinion.
62. For just as
each one of those who consider themselves philosophers, as I said before, thinks
he must bear the name of the philosophy, which he follows, from the name of the
father of the particular doctrine. In consequence of these events, we know that
Jesus foreknew what would happen after Him.
63. As well as that
of many other events, which He foretold, would befall those who believed on, and
confessed Him, the Christ.
For all that we
suffer, even when killed by friends, He foretold that such would take place; so
that it is manifest that no word or act of Him can be found to have any fault.
Wherefore we pray for you and for all other men who hate us; in order that you,
having repented along with us, may not blaspheme Him.
65. Who, by His
works, by the mighty deeds even now wrought in His name, and by the words He
taught, by the prophecies announced concerning Him, He is the blameless, and in
all things irreproachable.
66. And thus by
believing on Him, on Christ Jesus, you may be saved in His second glorious
advent, and may not be condemned to fire by Him."
replied, Let these things be so as you say, namely, that it was foretold Christ
would suffer, and be called a stone; and after His first appearance, in which it
had been announced He would suffer, would come in glory, and be final Judge of
all, and eternal King and Priest.
Now show if
this man be He of whom these prophecies were made. And I said, as you wish,
Trypho, I shall come to these proofs which you seek in the fitting place; but
permit me first to recount the prophecies, which I wish to do in order to prove
that Christ is called both God and Lord of hosts.
3. Jacob, in a
parable by the Holy Spirit; and by your interpreters, as God says, are foolish,
since they say that reference is made to Solomon and not to Christ, when he bore
the ark of testimony into the temple which he built.
The Psalm of
David is this: 'the earth is the Lord's, and the fullness thereof; the world,
and all that dwell therein. He hath founded it upon the seas, and prepared it
upon the floods. Who shall ascend into the hill of the Lord? Or who shall stand
in His holy place?
He that is
clean of hands and pure of heart: who has not received his soul in vain, and has
not sworn guilefully to his neighbor: he shall receive blessing from the Lord,
and mercy from God his Savior. This is the generation of them that seek the Lord
that seek the face of the God of Jacob.
6. Lift up your
gates, ye rulers; and be ye lifted up, ye everlasting doors; and the King of
glory shall come in. Who is this King of glory? The Lord strong and mighty in
7. Accordingly, it
is shown that Solomon is not the Lord of hosts; but when our Christ rose from
the dead and ascended to heaven, the rulers in heaven, under appointment of God,
are commanded to open the gates of heaven, that He, who is the King of glory,
may enter in, and having ascended, may sit on the right hand of the Father until
He makes His enemies His footstool, as has been manifested by another Psalm.
8. For when the
rulers of heaven saw Him of uncomely and dishonored appearance, and inglorious,
not recognizing Him, they inquired, 'Who is this King of glory?' And the Holy
Spirit, either from the person of His Father, or from His own person, answered
them, 'The Lord of hosts, He is this King of glory.'
9. For every one
will confess that not one of those who presided over the gates of the temple at
Jerusalem would venture to say concerning Solomon, though he was so glorious a
king, or concerning the ark of testimony, Who is this King of glory?
10. Moreover, in
the forty-sixth Psalm, reference is thus made to Christ: “God went up with a
shout, the Lord with the sound of a trumpet. Sing ye to our God, sing ye: sing
to our King, sing ye; for God is King of all the earth: sing with understanding.
God has ruled over the nations. God sits upon His holy throne. The rulers
of the nations were assembled along with the God of Abraham, for the strong ones
of God are greatly exalted on the earth.”
11. And in the
ninety-eighth Psalm, the Holy Spirit reproaches you, and predicts Him whom you
do not wish to be king and Lord, both of Samuel, and of Aaron, and of Moses, and
in short, of all the others.
12. And the words
of the Psalm are these: “The Lord has reigned, let the nations be angry:
He who sits upon the cherubim, let the earth be shaken. The Lord is great
in Zion, and He is high above all the nations. Let them confess Thy great name,
for it is fearful and holy, and the honor of the King loves judgment.
13. Thou hast
prepared equity; judgment and righteousness hast Thou performed in Jacob. Exalt
the Lord our God, and worship the footstool of His feet; for He is holy. Moses
and Aaron are among His priests, and Samuel is among those who call upon His
They called on
the Lord, and He heard them. In the pillar of the cloud He spoke to them; for
they kept His testimonies, and the commandment which he gave them. O Lord our
God, Thou heard them: O God, Thou were propitious to them, and taking vengeance
on all their inventions. Exalt the Lord our God, and worship at His holy hill;
for the Lord our God is holy."
15. And Trypho
said, "Sir, it were good for us if we obeyed our teachers, who laid down a
law that we should have no intercourse with any of you, and that we should not
have even any communication with you on these questions.
16. For you utter
many blasphemies, in that you seek to persuade us that this crucified man was
with Moses and Aaron, and spoke to them in the pillar of the cloud; that then he
became man, was crucified, and ascended up to heaven, and comes again to earth,
and ought to be worshipped.
17. Then I
answered, I know that, as the word of God says, this great wisdom of God, the
Maker of all things, and the Almighty is hid from you. Wherefore, in sympathy
with you, I am striving to the utmost that you may understand these matters
which to you are paradoxical; but if not, that I myself may be innocent in the
day of judgment.
18. For you shall
hear other words which appear still more paradoxical; but be not confounded,
nay, rather remain still more zealous hearers and investigators, despising the
tradition of your teachers, since they are convicted by the Holy Spirit of
inability to perceive the truths taught by God, and of preferring to teach their
19. Accordingly, in
the forty-fifth Psalm, these words are in like manner referred to Christ: “My
heart has brought forth a good matter; I tell my works to the King. My tongue is
the pen of a ready writer. Fairer in beauty than the sons of men: grace is
poured forth into Thy lips: therefore has God blessed Thee for ever.
Gird Thy sword
upon Thy thigh, O mighty One. Press on in Thy fairness and in Thy beauty, and
prosper and reign, because of truth, and of meekness, and of righteousness: and
Thy right hand shall instruct Thee marvelously.
arrows are sharpened, O mighty One; the people shall fall under Thee. Thy
throne, O God, is for ever and ever: a scepter of equity is the scepter of Thy
kingdom. Thou hast loved righteousness, and hast hated iniquity; therefore thy
God hath anointed Thee with the oil of gladness above Thy fellows.
22. He hath
anointed Thee with myrrh, and oil, and cassia, from Thy garments; from the ivory
palaces, whereby they made Thee glad. Kings' daughters are in Thy honor. The
queen stood at Thy right hand, clad in garments embroidered with gold.
23. Hearken, O
daughter, and behold, and incline thine ear, and forget thy people and the house
of thy father: and the King shall desire thy beauty; because He is thy Lord.
They shall worship Him, and the daughter of Tyre with gifts. The rich of the
people shall entreat Thy face.
24. The virgins
that follow her shall be brought to the King; her neighbors shall be brought
unto Thee: they shall be brought with joy and gladness: they shall be led into
the King's shrine. Instead of thy fathers, thy sons have been born:
25. Thou shalt
appoint them rulers over all the earth. I shall remember Thy name in every
generation: therefore the people shall confess Thee for ever, and for ever and
The Jews and Christians.
1. Now it is not
surprising, I continued, that you hate us who hold these opinions, and convict
you of a continual hardness of heart. For indeed Elijah, conversing with God
concerning you, spoke thus: “Lord, they have slain Thy prophets, and threw
down Thine altars: and I am left alone, and they seek my life.”
2. And He answers
him: 'I have still seven thousand men who have not bowed the knee to Baal.'
Therefore, just as God did not inflict His anger on account of those seven
thousand men, even so He has now neither yet inflicted judgment, nor does
3. Knowing that
daily some of you are becoming disciples in the name of Christ, and quitting the
path of error; who are also receiving gifts, each as he is worthy, illuminated
through the name of this Christ. For one receives the spirit of understanding,
another of counsel, another of strength, another of healing, another of
foreknowledge, another of teaching, and another of the fear of God.
4. To this Trypho
said to me, I wish you knew that you are beside yourself, talking these
sentiments. And I said to him,
listen, O friend, for I am not mad or beside myself; but it was prophesied that,
after the ascent of Christ to heaven, He would deliver us from error and give us
5. The words are
these: 'He ascended up on high; He led a captivity captive; He gave gifts to
men.' Accordingly, we who have received gifts from Christ, who has ascended up
on high, prove from the words of prophecy that you, 'the wise in yourselves, and
the men of understanding in your own eyes, are foolish, and honor God and His
Christ by lip only.
6. But we, who are
instructed in the whole truth, honor them both in acts, and in knowledge, and in
heart, even unto death. But you hesitate to confess that He is Christ, as the
Scriptures and the events witnessed and done in His name themselves prove.
7. Or perhaps for
this reason, lest you be persecuted by the rulers, who, under the influence of
the wicked and deceitful spirit, the serpent, will not cease putting to death
and persecuting those who confess the name of Christ until He come again, and
destroy them all, and render to each his deserts.
replied; Now, then render us the
proof that this man who you say was crucified and ascended into heaven is the
Christ of God. For you have sufficiently proved by means of the Scriptures
previously quoted by you, that it is declared in the Scriptures that Christ must
suffer, and come again with glory, and receive the eternal kingdom over all the
nations, every kingdom being made subject to Him: now show us that this man is
9. And I replied;
It has already been proven, sirs, to those who have ears, even from the facts
which have been conceded by you; but that you may not think me at a loss, and
unable to give proof of what you ask, as I promised, I shall do so at a fitting
place. At present, I resume the consideration of the subject which I was
then, of the lamb which God enjoined to be sacrificed as the Passover, was a
type of Christ; with whose blood, in proportion to their faith in Him, they
anoint their houses, i.e., themselves, who believe on Him. For that the creation
which God created you all can understand, to wit, Adam, was a house for the
spirit which proceeded from God.
11. And to prove
that this injunction was temporary, God does not permit the lamb of the Passover
to be sacrificed in any other place than where His name was named; knowing that
the days will come, after the suffering of Christ, when even the place in
Jerusalem shall be given over to your enemies, and all the offerings, in short,
12. And that lamb
which was commanded to be wholly roasted was a symbol of the suffering of the
cross which Christ would undergo. For
the lamb, which is roasted, is roasted and dressed up in the form of the cross.
13. For one spit is
transfixed right through from the lower parts up to the head, and one across the
back, to which are attached the legs of the lamb. And the two goats which were
ordered to be offered during the fast, of which one was sent away as the
scapegoat, and the other sacrificed, were similarly declarative of the two
appearances of Christ:
14. The first, in
which the elders of your people and the priests having laid hands on Him and put
Him to death, as the scapegoat sent away. And
His second appearance, because in the same place in Jerusalem you shall
recognize Him whom you have dishonored.
15. And who was an
offering for all sinners willing to repent, and keeping the fast which Isaiah
speaks of, loosening the terms of the violent contracts, and keeping the other
precepts, likewise enumerated by him, and which I have quoted, which those
believing in Jesus do.
16. And further,
you are aware that the offering of the two goats, which were enjoined to be
sacrificed at the fast, was not permitted to take place similarly anywhere else,
but only in Jerusalem. And
the offering of fine flour, sirs, I said, which was prescribed to be presented
on behalf of those purified from leprosy.
17. This was a type
of the bread of the Eucharist, the celebration of which our Lord Jesus Christ
prescribed, in remembrance of the suffering which He endured on behalf of those
who are purified in soul from all iniquity,
18. In order that
we may at the same time thank God for having created the world, with all things
therein, for the sake of man, and for delivering us from the evil in which we
were, and for utterly overthrowing principalities and powers by Him who suffered
according to His will.
19. Hence God
speaks by the mouth of Malachi, one of the twelve prophets, as I said before,
about the sacrifices at that time presented by you: 'I have no pleasure in you,
saith the Lord; and I will not accept your sacrifices at your hands:
For, from the
rising of the sun unto the going down of the same, My name has been glorified
among the Gentiles, and in every place incense is offered to My name, and a pure
offering: for My name is great among the Gentiles, saith the Lord: but ye
He then speaks
of those Gentiles, namely us, who in every place offer sacrifices to Him, i.e.,
the bread of the Eucharist, and also the cup of the Eucharist, affirming both
that we glorify His name, and that you profane.
22. The command of
circumcision, bidding to always circumcise the children on
the eighth day, was a type of the true
circumcision, by which we are circumcised from deceit and iniquity
through Him who rose from the dead on the first day
after the Sabbath, our Lord Jesus Christ.
23. For the first
day after the Sabbath, remaining the first of all the days, is called the
eighth, according to the number of all the days of the cycle, and yet remains
prescription that twelve bells be attached to the robe of the high priest, which
hung down to the feet, was a symbol of the twelve apostles, who depend on the
power of Christ, the eternal Priest; and through their voice it is that all the
earth has been filled with the glory and grace of God and of His Christ.
25. Wherefore David
also says: 'Their sound has gone forth into all the earth, and their words to
the ends of the world.' And Isaiah speaks as if he were personating the
apostles, when they say to Christ that they believe not in their own report, but
in the power of Him who sent them.
26. And so he says:
'Lord, who hath believed our report? And to whom is the arm of the Lord
revealed? We have preached before Him as a child, as a root in a dry ground.'
But when the passage speaks as from the lips of many, 'We have preached
before Him,' and adds, 'as if a child,' it signifies that the wicked shall
become subject to Him, and shall obey His command, and that all shall become as
Such a thing as
you may witness in the body: although the members are enumerated as many, all
are called “one” and are a “body”.
28. For, indeed, a
commonwealth and a church, though many individuals in number, are in fact as
one, called and addressed by one appellation. And in short, sirs, so I said, by
enumerating all the other appointments of Moses I can demonstrate that they were
types, and symbols, and declarations of those things which would happen to
29. Of those who it
was foreknown were to believe in Him, and of those things which would also be
done by Christ Himself. But since what I have now enumerated appears to me to be
sufficient, I revert again to the order of the discourse.
30. As then
circumcision began with Abraham, and the Sabbath and sacrifices and offerings
and feasts with Moses, and it has been proved they were enjoined on account of
the hardness of your people's heart, so it was necessary, in accordance with the
31. That they
should have an end in Him who was born of a virgin, of the family of Abraham and
tribe of Judah, and of David; in Christ the Son of God, who was proclaimed as
about to come to all the world, to be the everlasting law and the everlasting
covenant, even as the afore mentioned prophecies show.
32. And we, who
have approached God through Him, have received not carnal, but spiritual
circumcision, which Enoch and those like him observed. And we have received it
through baptism, since we were sinners, by God's mercy; and all men may equally
But since the
mystery of His birth now demands our attention I shall speak of it. Isaiah then
asserted in regard to the generation of Christ, that it could not be declared by
man, in words already quoted: 'Who shall declare His generation? for His life is
taken from the earth: for the transgressions of my people was He led to death.'
34. The Spirit of
prophecy thus affirmed that the generation of Him who was to die, that we sinful
men might be healed by His stripes, was such as could not be declared.
Furthermore, that the men who believe in Him may possess the knowledge of the
manner in which He came into the world, the Spirit of prophecy by the same
Isaiah foretold how it would happen thus:
35. And the Lord
spoke again to Ahaz, saying, Ask for thyself a sign from the Lord thy God, in
the depth, or in the height. And Ahaz said, I will not ask, neither will I tempt
the Lord. And Isaiah said, Hear then, O house of David; Is it a small thing for
you to contend with men, and how do you contend with the Lord? Therefore the
Lord Himself will give you a sign.
36. Behold, the
virgin shall conceive, and shall bear a son, and his name shall be called
Immanuel. Butter and honey shall he eat, before he knows or prefers the evil,
and chooses out the good; for before the child knows good or ill, he rejects
evil by choosing out the good.
For before the
child knows how to call father or mother, he shall receive the power of Damascus
and the spoil of Samaria in presence of the king of Assyria. And the land shall
be forsaken, which thou shalt with difficulty endure in consequence of the
presence of its two kings.
38. But God shall
bring on thee, and on thy people, and on the house of thy father, days which
have not yet come upon thee since the day in which Ephraim took away from Judah
the king of Assyria.'
Now it is
evident to all, that in the race of Abraham according to the flesh no one has
been born of a virgin, or is said to have been born, save this our Christ. But
since you and your teachers venture to affirm that in the prophecy of Isaiah it
is not said;
virgin shall conceive,' but, 'Behold, the young woman shall conceive, and bear a
son;' and since you explain the prophecy as if it referred to Hezekiah, who was
your king, I shall endeavor to discuss shortly this point in opposition to you,
and to show that reference is made to Him who is acknowledged by us as Christ.
41. For thus, so
far as you are concerned, I shall be found in all respects innocent, if I strive
earnestly to persuade you by bringing forward demonstrations. But if you remain
hard-hearted, or weak to a resolution, on account of death, which is the lot of
the Christians, and are unwilling to assent to the truth, you shall appear as
authors of your own.
42. And you deceive
yourselves while you fancy that, because you are the seed of Abraham after the
flesh, therefore you shall fully inherit the good things announced to be
bestowed by God through Christ. For no one, not even of them, has anything to
look for, but only those who in mind are assimilated to the faith of Abraham,
and who have recognized all the mysteries:
For I say, that
some injunctions were laid on you in reference to the worship of God and
practice of righteousness; but some injunctions and acts were likewise mentioned
in reference to the mystery of Christ, on account of the hardness of your
44. And that this
is so, God makes known in Ezekiel. He
said concerning it: 'If Noah and Jacob and Daniel should beg either sons or
daughters, the request would not be granted them.' And in Isaiah, of the very
same matter He spoke thus: 'The Lord God said, they shall both go forth and look
on the bodies of the men that have transgressed.
45. For their worm
shall not die, and their fire shall not be quenched, and they shall be a
gazing-stock to all flesh.' So that it becomes you to eradicate this hope from
your souls, and hasten to know in what way forgiveness of sins, and a hope of
inheriting the promised good things, shall be yours.
46. But there is no
other way than this, to become acquainted with this Christ, to be washed in the
fountain spoken of by Isaiah for the remission of sins; and for the rest, to
live sinless lives.
said, If I seem to interrupt these matters, which you say must be investigated,
yet the question which I mean to put is urgent. Suffer me first.
And I replied, Ask whatever you please, as it occurs to you; and I shall
endeavor, after questions and answers, to resume and complete the discourse.
48. Then he said,
Tell me, then, shall those who lived according to the law given by Moses, live
in the same manner with Jacob, Enoch, and Noah, in the resurrection of the dead,
or not? I replied to him,
49. When I quoted,
sir, the words spoken by Ezekiel, that 'even if Noah and Daniel and Jacob were
to beg sons and daughters, the request would not be granted them,' but that each
one, that is to say, shall be saved by his own righteousness, I said also, that
those who regulated their lives by the law of Moses would in like manner be
50. For what in the
law of Moses is naturally good, and pious, and righteous, and has been
prescribed to be done by those who obey it; and what was appointed to be
performed by reason of the hardness of the people's hearts; was similarly
recorded, and done also by those who were under the law.
51. Since those who
did that which is universally, naturally, and eternally good are pleasing to
God, they shall be saved through this Christ in the resurrection equally with
those righteous men who were before them, namely Noah, and Enoch, and Jacob, and
whoever else there be.
52. Along with
those who have known this Christ, Son of God, who was before the morning star
and the moon, and submitted to become incarnate, and to be born of this virgin
of the family of David, in order that, by this dispensation, the serpent that
sinned from the beginning, and the angels like him, may be destroyed.
53. And that death
may be contemned, and for ever quit, at the second coming of the Christ Himself,
those who believe in Him and live acceptably, and be no more: when some are sent
to be punished unceasingly into judgment and condemnation of fire; but others
shall exist in freedom from suffering, from corruption, and from grief, and in
1. But if some,
even now, wish to live in the observance of the institutions given by Moses, and
yet believe in this Jesus who was crucified, recognizing Him to be the Christ of
God, and that it is given to Him to be absolute Judge of all, and that His is
the everlasting kingdom, can they also be saved?" So he inquired of me.
2. And I replied,
Let us consider this also together, whether one may now observe all the Mosaic
institutions. And he answered, No. For we know that, as you said, it is not
possible either anywhere to sacrifice the lamb of the Passover, or to offer the
goats ordered for the fast; or, in short all the other offerings.
3. And I said,
Tell then yourself, I pray, some things which can be observed; for you will be
persuaded that, though a man does not keep or has not performed the eternal
decrees, he may assuredly be saved. Then
he replied, To keep the Sabbath, to be circumcised, to observe months, and to be
washed if you touch anything prohibited by Moses, or after sexual intercourse.
4. And I said, Do
you think that Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Noah, and Job, and all the rest before or
after them equally righteous, also Sarah the wife of Abraham, Rebekah the wife
of Isaac, Rachel the wife of Jacob, and Leah, and all the rest of them, until
the mother of Moses the faithful servant, who observed none of these will be
5. And Trypho
answered, Were not Abraham and his descendants circumcised? And I said, I know
that Abraham and his descendants were circumcised. The reason why circumcision
was given to them I stated at length in what has gone before; and if what has
been said does not convince you, let us again search into the matter.
6. But you are
aware that, up to Moses, no one in fact who was righteous observed any of these
rites at all of which we are talking, or received one commandment to observe,
except that of circumcision, which began from Abraham.
And he replied, We know it, and admit that they are saved.
Then I returned
answer, You perceive that God by Moses laid all such ordinances upon you on
account of the hardness of your people's hearts, in order that, by the large
number of them, you might keep God before your eyes continually, and in every
action, and never begin to act unjustly or impiously.
8. For He enjoined
you placing purple dye around you, in order that you might not forget God; and
He commanded you to wear a phylactery, certain characters, which indeed we
consider holy, being engraved on very thin parchment; and by these means
stirring you up to retain a constant remembrance of God:
9. And at the same
time convincing you, that in your hearts you have not even a faint remembrance
of God's worship. Yet not even so were you dissuaded from idolatry: for in the
times of Elijah, when God recounted the number of those who had not bowed the
knee to Baal, He said the number was seven thousand;
10. And in Isaiah
He rebukes you for having sacrificed your children to idols. But we, because we
refuse to sacrifice to those to whom we were of old accustomed to sacrifice,
undergo extreme penalties, and rejoice in death, believing that God will raise
us up by His Christ.
11. And that He
will make us incorruptible, and undisturbed, and immortal; and we know that the
ordinances imposed by reason of the hardness of your people's hearts, contribute
nothing to the performance of righteousness and of piety.
12. And Trypho
again inquired; But if some one, knowing that this is so, after he recognizes
that this man is Christ, and has believed in and obeys Him, wishes, however, to
observe these institutions, will he be saved?
13. I said, In my
opinion, Trypho, such an one will be saved, if he does not strive in every way
to persuade other men, I mean those Gentiles who have been circumcised from
error by Christ, to observe the same things as himself, telling them that they
will not be saved unless they do so.
This you did
yourself at the commencement of the discourse, when you declared that I would
not be saved unless I observe these institutions. Then he replied, Why then have
you said, 'In my opinion such an one will be saved, unless there are some who
affirm that such will not be saved?
15. There are such
people, Trypho, I answered; and these do not venture to have any intercourse
with or to extend hospitality to such persons; but I do not agree with them. But
if some, through weak-mindedness, wish to observe such institutions as were
given by Moses, from which they expect some virtue.
But which we
believe were appointed by reason of the hardness of the people's hearts, along
with their hope in this Christ, and perform the eternal and natural acts of
righteousness and piety, yet choose to live with the Christians and the
faithful, as I said before.
17. And not
inducing them either to be circumcised like themselves, or to keep the Sabbath,
or to observe any other such ceremonies, then I hold that we ought to join
ourselves to such, and associate with them in all things as kinsmen and
18. But if, Trypho,
I continued, some of your race, who say they believe in this Christ, compel
those Gentiles who believe in this Christ to live in all respects according to
the law given by Moses, or choose not to associate so intimately with them, I in
like manner do not approve of them.
But I believe
that even those, who have been persuaded by them to observe the legal
dispensation along with their confession of God in Christ, shall probably be
20. And I hold,
further, that such as have confessed and known this man to be Christ, yet who
have gone back from some cause to the legal dispensation, and have denied that
this man is Christ, and have repented not before death, shall by no means be
Further, I hold
that those of the seed of Abraham who live according to the law, and do not
believe in this Christ before death, shall likewise not be saved, and especially
those who have anathematized and do anathematize this very Christ in the
synagogues, and everything by which they might obtain salvation and escape the
vengeance of fire.
goodness and the loving-kindness of God, and His boundless riches, hold
righteous and sinless the man who, as Ezekiel tells, repents of sins; and
reckons sinful, unrighteous, and impious the man who falls away from piety and
righteousness to unrighteousness and ungodliness.
23. Wherefore also
our Lord Jesus Christ said, 'In whatsoever things I shall take you, in these I
shall judge you.' And Trypho said, We have heard what you think of these
matters. Resume the discourse where you left off, and bring it to an end.
24. For some of it
appears to me to be paradoxical, and wholly incapable of proof. For when you say
that this Christ existed as God before the ages, and that He then submitted to
be born and become man, yet that He is not man of man, this appears to me to be
not merely paradoxical, but also foolish.
25. And I replied
to this; I know that the statement
does appear to be paradoxical, especially to those of your race, who are ever
unwilling to understand or to perform the will of God, but rather those of your
teachers, as God Himself declares.
26. Now assuredly,
Trypho, I continued, that this man
is indeed the Christ of God does not fail, though I be unable to prove that He
existed formerly as Son of the Maker of all things, being God, and was born a
man by the Virgin.
27. But since I
have certainly proved that this man is the Christ of God, whoever He be, even if
I do not prove that He pre-existed, and submitted to be born a man of like
passions with us, having a body, according to the Father's will;
In this last
matter alone is it just to say that I have erred, and not to deny that He is the
Christ, though it should appear that He was born man of men, and is proved, that
He has become Christ by election.
29. For there are
some, my friends, I said, of our race, who admit that He is Christ, while
holding Him to be man of men; with whom I do not agree, nor would I, even though
most of those who have the same opinions as myself should say so; since we were
enjoined by Christ Himself to put no faith in human doctrines, but in those
proclaimed by the blessed prophets and taught by Himself."
30. And Trypho
said, Those who affirm him to have been a man, and to have been anointed by
election, and then to have become Christ, appear to me to speak more plausibly
than you who hold those opinions which you express.
31. For we all
expect that Christ will be a man of men, and that Elijah when he comes will
anoint him. But if this man appears to be Christ, he must certainly be known as
man of men; but from the circumstance that Elijah has not yet come, I infer that
this man is not Him.
32. Then I inquired
of him, Does not Scripture, in the book of Zechariah, say that Elijah shall come
before the great and terrible day of the Lord?
And he answered, Certainly.
33. If therefore
Scripture compels you to admit that two advents of Christ were predicted to take
place, one in which He would appear suffering, and dishonored; but the other in
which He would come glorious. and Judge of all, as manifested;
Shall we not
suppose that the word of God has proclaimed that Elijah shall be the precursor
of the great and terrible day, that is, of His second advent?
Certainly, he answered. Accordingly,
our Lord in His teaching, so I continued, proclaimed that this very thing would
take place, saying that Elijah would also come.
35. And we know
that this shall take place when our Lord Jesus Christ shall come in glory from
heaven; whose first manifestation was in Elijah, in the Spirit of God as herald
by John a prophet among your nation; after whom no other prophet appeared among
He cried as he
sat by the river Jordan: 'I baptize you with water to repentance; but He that is
stronger than I shall come, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear: He shall
baptize you with the Holy Ghost and with fire: whose fan is in His hand, and He
will thoroughly purge His floor, and will gather the wheat into the barn; but
the chaff He will burn up with unquenchable fire.'
37. And this very
prophet your king Herod had shut up in prison; and when his birthday was
celebrated, and the niece of the same Herod by her dancing had pleased him, he
told her to ask whatever she pleased. Then the mother of the maiden instigated
her to ask the head of John, who was in prison; and having asked it, sent and
ordered the head of John to be brought in on a charger.
38. Wherefore also
our Christ on earth said, to those who were affirming that Elijah must come
before Christ: 'Elijah shall come, and restore all things; but I say unto you,
that Elijah has already come, and they knew him not, but have done to him
whatsoever they chose.' And it is written, 'Then the disciples understood that
He spake to them about John the Baptist.'
said, This statement also seems to me paradoxical; namely, that the prophetic
Spirit of God, who was in Elijah, was also in John. To this I replied, Do you not think that the same thing
happened in the case of Joshua the son of Nun, who succeeded to the command of
the people after Moses, when Moses was commanded to lay his hands on Joshua, and
God said to him, I will take of the spirit which is in thee, and put it on him?'
40. And he said,
"Certainly. As therefore, I say, while Moses was still among men, God took
of the spirit which was in Moses and put it on Joshua, even so God was able to
cause the spirit of Elijah to come upon John; in order that, as Christ at His
first coming appeared inglorious, even so the first coming of the spirit, which
remained always pure in Elijah like that of Christ, might be perceived to be
For the Lord
said He would wage war against Amalek with concealed the hand; and you will not
deny that Amalek fell. But if it is said that only in the glorious advent of
Christ war will be waged with Amalek, how great will the fulfillment of
Scripture be which says,
'God will wage
war against Amalek with a concealed hand!'
You can perceive that the concealed power of God was in Christ the
crucified, before whom demons, and all the principalities and powers of the
1. And Trypho
said, You seem to me to have come out of a great conflict with many persons
about all the points we have been searching into, and therefore quite ready to
return answers to all questions put to you.
Answer me then,
first, how there is another God besides the Maker of all things; and then show
that He submitted to be born of the Virgin. To which I replied, Give me
permission first of all to quote certain passages from the prophecy of Isaiah,
which refer to the office of forerunner discharged by John the Baptist and
prophet before this our Lord Jesus Christ.
it," said he. Then I said,
Isaiah thus foretold John's forerunning: And Hezekiah said to Isaiah, Good is
the word of the Lord which He spoke: Let there be peace and righteousness in my
days. And ye priests encourage the people to speak to the heart of Jerusalem,
and encourage her.
humiliation is accomplished, her sin is annulled; for she has received of the
Lord's hand double for her sins. A voice of one crying in the wilderness,
Prepare the ways of the Lord; make straight the paths of our God.
shall be filled up, and every mountain and hill shall be brought low: and the
crooked shall be made straight, and the rough way shall be plain; and the glory
of the Lord shall be seen, and all flesh shall see the salvation of God: for the
Lord hath spoken it.
6. A voice of one
saying, Cry; and I said, What shall I cry? All flesh is grass, and all the glory
of man as the flower of grass. The grass has withered, and the flower of it has
fallen away; but the word of the Lord endures for ever. Thou that bring good
tidings to Zion, go up to the high mountain; thou that bring good tidings to
Jerusalem, lift up thy voice with strength.
7. Lift ye up, be
not afraid; tell the cities of Judah, Behold your God! Behold, the Lord comes
with strength, and His arm comes with authority. Behold, His reward is with Him,
and His work before Him.
8. As a shepherd
He will tend His flock, and He will gather the lambs, and cheer on her that is
with young. Who has measured the water with his hand, and the heaven with a
span, and all the earth with his fist? Who has weighed the mountains, and the
valleys into a balance?
9. Who has known
the mind of the Lord? And who has been His counselor, and who shall advise Him?
Or with whom did He take counsel, and instructed Him? Or who showed Him
judgment? Or who made Him to know the way of understanding?
10. All the nations
are reckoned as a drop of a bucket, and as a turning of a balance, and shall be
reckoned as spittle. For Lebanon is not sufficient to burn, nor the beasts
sufficient for a burnt-offering; and all the nations are considered nothing, and
11. And when I
ceased, Trypho said, All the words of the prophecy you repeat, sir, are
ambiguous, and have no force in proving what you wish to prove. Then I answered
Trypho; If the prophets had not ceased, so that there were no more in your
nation after this John, it is evident that what I say in reference to Jesus
Christ might be regarded perhaps as ambiguous.
12. But if John
came first calling on men to repent, and him still by the river Jordan, and
Christ having come putting an end to his prophesying and baptizing, and Himself
also preached, saying that the kingdom of heaven is at hand.
13. And that He
must suffer many things from the Scribes and Pharisees, and be crucified, and on
the third day rise again, and appear again in Jerusalem, and again eat and drink
with His disciples; and foretold concerning the interval between His advents, as
I previously said, that priests and false prophets would arise in His name,
which things do actually appear;
14. Then how can
they be ambiguous, when you should have been persuaded by the facts? Moreover,
He referred to the fact that there would be no longer in your nation any
prophet, and to the fact that men recognized how that the New Testament, which
God formerly announced was then present, i.e., Christ Himself;
15. And this in the
following terms: 'The law and the prophets were until John the Baptist; from
that time the kingdom of heaven suffered violence, and the violent took it by
force. And if you can receive it, he is Elijah, who was to come. He that hath
ears to hear, let him hear.'
16. And it was
prophesied by Jacob the patriarch that there would be two advents of Christ,
that in the first He would suffer, and that after He came there would be neither
prophet nor king in your nation, and that the nations who believed in the
suffering of Christ would look for His future appearance.
And for this
reason the Holy Spirit had uttered these truths in a parable, and obscurely:
for, I added, it is said, 'Judah, thy brethren have praised Thee: Thy hands on
the neck of thine enemies; the sons of thy father shall worship Thee.
18. Judah is a
lion's whelp; from the germ, my son, thou art sprung up. Reclining, he lay down
like a lion, and like a lion's whelp: who shall raise him up? A ruler shall not
depart from Judah, or a leader from his thighs, until that which is laid up in
store for him shah come.
And he shall be
the desire of nations, binding his foal to the vine, and the foal of his ass to
the tendril of the vine. He shall wash his garments in wine, and his vesture in
the blood of the grape. His eyes shall be bright with wine, and his teeth white
20. Moreover, that
in your nation there never failed either prophet or ruler, from the time when
they began until the time when this Jesus Christ appeared and suffered, you will
not venture shamelessly to assert, nor can you prove it.
For though you
affirm that Herod, by whom He suffered, was an Ashkelonite, nevertheless you
admit that there was a high priest in your nation; so that you then had one who
presented offerings according to the law of Moses, and observed the other legal
22. And you had
prophets in succession for until John there never failed to be a prophet among
you, who was lord, and leader, and ruler of your nation. For the Spirit which
was in the prophets anointed your kings, and established them.
23. But after the
manifestation and death of our Jesus Christ in your nation, there was and is
nowhere any prophet: nay, further, you ceased to exist under your own king, your
land was laid waste, and forsaken like a lodge in a vineyard;
24. And the
statement of Scripture by Jacob, 'And He shall be the desire of nations,' meant
symbolically His two advents, and that the nations would believe in Him; which
facts you may now at length discern. For those out of all the nations who are
pious and righteous through the faith of Christ, look for His future appearance.
25. And that
expression, 'binding his foal to the vine, and the ass's foal to the vine
tendril,' was a declaring beforehand both of the works wrought by Him at His
first advent, and also of that belief in Him which the nations would repose.
26. For they were
like an un-harnessed foal, which was not bearing a yoke on its neck, until this
Christ came, and sending His disciples to instruct them; they bore the yoke of
His word, and yielded the neck to endure all for the sake of the good things
promised by Himself, and expected by them.
27. And truly our
Lord Jesus Christ, when He intended to go into Jerusalem, requested His
disciples to bring Him a certain ass, along with its foal, which was bound in an
entrance of a village called Bethpage; and having seated Himself on it, He
entered into Jerusalem.
28. And as this was
done by Him in the manner in which it was prophesied - in precise terms that it
would be done by the Christ, and as the fulfillment was so recognized, it became
a clear proof that He was the Christ. And though all this happened and is proved
from Scripture, you are still hard-hearted.
29. Nay, it was
prophesied by Zechariah, one of the twelve, that such would take place, in the
following words: 'Rejoice greatly, daughter of Zion; shout, and declare,
daughter of Jerusalem; behold, thy King shall come to thee, righteous, bringing
salvation, meek, and lowly, riding on an ass, and the foal of an ass.'
Now, that the
Spirit of prophecy, as well as the patriarch Jacob, mentioned both an ass and
its foal, which would be used by Him; and, further, that He, as I previously
said, requested His disciples to bring both beasts; was a prediction that you of
the synagogue, along with the Gentiles, would believe in Him.
31. For as the
un-harnessed colt was a symbol of the Gentiles even so the harnessed ass was a
symbol of your nation. For you possess the law which was imposed by the
prophets. Moreover, the prophet Zechariah foretold that this same Christ would
be smitten, and His disciples scattered: which also took place.
For after His
crucifixion, the disciples that accompanied Him were dispersed, until He rose
from the dead, and persuaded them that so it had been prophesied concerning Him,
that He would suffer; and being thus persuaded, they went into all the world,
and taught these truths.
33. Hence also we
are strong in His faith and doctrine, since we have this persuasion both from
the prophets, and from those who throughout the world are seen to be worshippers
of God in the name of that crucified One.
34. The following
is said, too, by Zechariah: 'O sword, rise up against My Shepherd, and against
the man of My people, saith the Lord of hosts. Smite the Shepherd, and His flock
shall be scattered.'
the blood of the grape signifies.
1. And that
expression which was committed to writing by Moses, and prophesied by the
patriarch Jacob, namely, 'He shall wash His garments with wine, and His vesture
with the blood of the grape,' signified that He would wash those that believe in
Him with His own blood.
2. For the Holy
Spirit called those who receive remission of sins through Him, His garments;
amongst whom He is always present in power, but will be manifestly present at
His second coming. That the Scripture mentions the blood of the grape has been
evidently designed, because Christ derives blood not from the seed of man, but
from the power of God.
3. For as God, and
not man, has produced the blood of the vine, so also predicted that the blood of
Christ would be not of the seed of man, but of the power of God. But this
prophecy, sirs, which I repeated, proves that Christ is not man of men, begotten
in the ordinary course of humanity.
4. And Trypho
answered, We shall remember this your exposition, if you strengthen this
difficulty by other arguments: but now resume the discourse, and show us that
the Spirit of prophecy admits another God besides the Maker of all things.
5. Taking care not
to speak of the sun and moon of which, it is written, God has given to the
nations to worship as gods; and oftentimes the prophets, employing this manner
of speech, say that 'thy God is a God of gods, and a Lord of lords,' adding
frequently, 'the great and strong and terrible God.
6. For such
expressions are used, not as if they really were gods, but because the Scripture
is teaching us that the true God, who made all things, is Lord alone of those
who are reputed gods and lords.
7. And in order
that the Holy Spirit may convince of this, He said by the holy David, 'The gods
of the nations, reputed gods, are idols of demons, and not gods;' and He
denounces a curse on those who worship them."
8. And I replied,
I would not bring forward these proofs, Trypho, by which I am aware those who
worship these and such like are condemned, but such as no one could find any
objection to. These then will appear strange to you, although you read them
9. So that even
from this fact we understand that, because of your wickedness, God has withheld
from you the ability to discern the wisdom of His Scriptures; with some
exceptions, to whom, according to the grace of His long-suffering, as Isaiah
He has left a
seed of salvation, lest your race be utterly destroyed, like Sodom and Gomorrah.
Pay attention, therefore, to what I shall record out of the holy Scriptures,
which do not need to be expounded, but only listened to.
11. Moses, then,
the blessed and faithful servant of God, declares that He who appeared to
Abraham under the oak in Mamre is God, sent with the two angels in His company
to judge Sodom by Another who remains ever in the super-celestial places,
invisible to all men, holding personal intercourse with none, whom we believe to
be Maker and Father of all things;
12. For he speaks
thus: 'God appeared to him under the oak in Mature, as he sat at his tent-door
at noontide. And lifting up his eyes, he saw, and behold, three men stood before
him; and when he saw them, he ran to meet them from the door of his tent; and he
bowed himself toward the ground, and said;'
'Abraham gat up early in the morning to the place where he stood before the
Lord: and he looked toward Sodom and Gomorrah, and toward the adjacent country,
and behold a flame went up from the earth, like the smoke of a furnace.' And
having made an end of quoting these words, I asked them if they had understood
14. And they said
they had understood them, but that the passages brought forward adduced no proof
that there is any other God or Lord, or that the Holy Spirit says so, besides
the Maker of all things.
15. Then I replied,
I shall attempt to persuade you, since you have understood the Scriptures, of
what I said, and that there is said to be, another God and Lord subject to the
Maker of all things; who is also called an Angel, because He announces to men
whatsoever the Maker of all things - above whom there is no other God, wishes to
announce to them.
16. And quoting
once more the previous passage, I asked Trypho, Do you think that God appeared
to Abraham under the oak in Mature, as the Scripture asserts? He said,
17. I then said;
Was He one of those three whom Abraham saw, and whom the Holy Spirit of prophecy
describes as men? He said, No; but
God appeared to him, before the vision of the three.
three whom the Scripture calls men, were angels; two of them sent to destroy
Sodom, and one to announce the joyful tidings to Sarah, that she would bear a
son; for which cause he was sent, and having accomplished his errand, went away.
19. How then, said
I, does the one of the three, who was at the tent, and who said, 'I shall return
to thee hereafter, and Sarah shall have a son,' appear to have returned when
Sarah had begotten a son, and by the prophetic word to be declared God?
20. But that you
may clearly discern what I say, listen to the words expressly employed by Moses;
they are these: 'And Sarah saw the son of Hagar the Egyptian bond-woman, whom
she bore to Abraham, sporting with Isaac her son, and she said to Abraham, Cast
out this bond-woman and her son; for the son of this bond-woman shall not share
the inheritance of my son Isaac.
21. And the matter
seemed very grievous in Abraham's sight, because of his son. But God said to
Abraham, Let it not be grievous in thy sight because of the son, and because of
the bond-woman. In all that Sarah hath said unto thee, hearken to her voice; for
in Isaac shall thy seed be called.'
22. Have you
perceived, then, that He who said under the oak that He would return, since He
knew it would be necessary to advise Abraham to do what Sarah wished him, came
back as it is written; and is God, as the words declare, when they so speak:
'God said to Abraham, let it not be grievous in thy sight because of the son,
and because of the bond-woman?' So I inquired.
23. And Trypho
said, Certainly; but you have not proven from this that there is another God
besides Him who appeared to Abraham, and who also appeared to the other
patriarchs and prophets. You have proved, however, that we were wrong in
believing that the three who were in the tent with Abraham were all angels.
24. I replied
again, If I could not have proved to you from the Scriptures that one of those
three is God, and is called Angel, because, as I already said, He brings
messages to those to whom God the Maker of all things wishes, then in regard to
Him who appeared to Abraham on earth in human form in like manner as the two
angels who came with Him;
25. And who was God
even before the creation of the world, it were reasonable for you to entertain
the same belief as is entertained by the whole of your nation. Assuredly, he
said, for up to this moment this has been our belief.
26. Then I replied,
reverting to the Scriptures, I shall endeavor to persuade you, that He who is
said to have appeared to Abraham, and to Jacob, and to Moses, and who is called
God, is distinct from Him who made all things,--numerically, I mean, not in
27. For I affirm
that He has never at any time done anything which He who made the world--above
whom there is no other God--has not wished Him both to do and to engage Himself
28. And Trypho
said, Prove now that this is the case, that we also may agree with you. For we
do not understand you to affirm that He has done or said anything contrary to
the will of the Maker of all things.
29. Then I said,
"The Scripture just quoted by me will make this plain to you. It is thus:
'The sun was risen on the earth, and Lot entered into Zoar; and the Lord rained
on Sodom sulphur and fire from the Lord out of heaven, and overthrew these
cities and all the neighborhood.'
Then the fourth
of those who had remained with Trypho said, It must therefore necessarily be
said that one of the two angels who went to Sodom, and is named by Moses in the
Scripture Lord, is different from Him who also is God and appeared to Abraham.
31. It is not on
this ground solely, I said, that it must be admitted absolutely that some other
one is called Lord by the Holy Spirit besides Him who is considered Maker of all
things; not solely by Moses, but also by David.
32. For there is
written by him: 'The Lord says to my Lord, Sit on My right hand, until I make
Thine enemies Thy footstool,' as I have already quoted.
33. And again, in
other words: 'Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever. A scepter of equity is
the scepter of Thy kingdom: Thou hast loved righteousness and hated iniquity:
therefore God, even Thy God, hath anointed Thee with the oil of gladness above
34. If, therefore,
you assert that the Holy Spirit calls some other one God and Lord, besides the
Father of all things and His Christ, answer me; for I undertake to prove to you
from Scriptures themselves, that He whom the Scripture calls Lord is not one of
the two angels that went to Sodom, but He who was with them, and is called God,
that appeared to Abraham.
35. And Trypho
said, Prove this; for, as you see, the day advances, and we are not prepared for
such perilous replies; since never yet have we heard any man investigating, or
searching into, or proving these matters; nor would we have tolerated your
conversation, had you not referred everything to the Scriptures: for you are
very zealous in adducing proofs from them; and you are of opinion that there is
no God above the Maker of all things.
36. Then I replied,
You are aware, then, that the Scripture says, 'And the Lord said to Abraham, Why
did Sarah laugh, saying, Shall I truly conceive for I am old. Is anything
impossible with God? At the time appointed I shall return to thee according to
the time of life, and Sarah shall have a son.'
37. And after a
little interval, the men rose up from thence, and looked towards Sodom and
Gomorrah; and Abraham went with them, to bring them on the way. And the Lord
said, I will not conceal from Abraham, my servant, what I do.'
38. And again,
after a little it says thus: 'The Lord said, The cry of Sodom and Gomorrah is
great, and their sins are very grievous. I will go down now, and see whether
they have done altogether according to their cry which has come unto me; and if
not, that I may know.
39. And the men
turned away thence, and went to Sodom. But Abraham was standing before the Lord;
and Abraham drew near, and said, Wilt Thou destroy the righteous with the
wicked?' And so on, for I do not
think fit to write over again the same words, having written them all before,
40. Then I
proceeded to what follows, in which these words are recorded: 'And the Lord went
His way as soon as He had left communing with Abraham; and Abraham went to his
place. And there came two angels to Sodom at evening. And Lot sat in the gate of
Sodom;' and what follows.
41. 'But the men
put forth their hands, and pulled Lot into the house to them, and shut to the
door of the house; And the angels laid hold on his hand, and on the hand of his
wife, and on the hands of his daughters, the Lord being merciful to him.
42. And it came to
pass, when they had brought them forth abroad, that they said, Save thy life.
Look not behind thee, nor stay in all the neighborhood; escape to the mountain,
lest thou be taken along with them.
43. And Lot said to
them, I beseech Thee O Lord, since Thy servant has found grace in Thy sight, and
Thou hast magnified Thy righteousness, which Thou show towards me in saving my
life; but I cannot escape to the mountain, lest evil overtake me, and I die.
44. Behold, this
city is near to flee unto, and it is small: there I shall be safe, since it is
small; and any soul shall live. And He said to him, Behold, I have accepted thee
also in this matter, so as not to destroy the city for which thou hast spoken.
45. Make haste to
save thyself there; for I shall not do anything till thou be come there.
Therefore he called the name of the city Zoar.
The sun was risen upon the earth; and Lot entered into Zoar. And the Lord
rained on Sodom and Gomorrah sulfur and fire from out of heaven; and He
overthrew these cities, and all the neighborhood.'
46. And after
another pause I added: And now have you not perceived, my friends, that one of
the three, who is both God and Lord, and ministers to Him who is in the heavens,
is Lord of the two angels? For when they proceeded to Sodom, He remained behind,
and communed with Abraham in the words recorded by Moses; and when He departed
after the conversation, Abraham went back to his place.
47. And when he
came to Sodom, the two angels no longer conversed with Lot, but He Himself, as
the Scripture makes evident; and He is the Lord who received the commission from
the Lord who remains in the heavens, the Maker of all things, to inflict upon
Sodom and Gomorrah the judgment which the Scripture describes in these terms:'
The Lord rained down upon Sodom and Gomorrah sulphur and fire from the Lord out
48. Then when I was
silent, Trypho said, that Scripture compels us to admit this is manifest; but
there is a matter about which we are deservedly at a loss--namely, about what
was said to the effect that the Lord ate what was prepared and placed before him
by Abraham; and you would admit this.
49. I answered, It
is written that they ate; and if we believe that it is said the three ate, and
not the two alone--who were really angels, and are nourished in the heavens, as
is evident to us, even though they are not nourished by food similar to that
which mortals use.
concerning the sustenance of manna which supported your fathers in the desert,
Scripture speaks thus, that they ate angels food), then I would say that the
Scripture which affirms they ate bears the same meaning as when we would say
about fire that it has devoured all things;
51. Yet it is not
certainly understood that they ate, masticating with teeth and jaws. So that not
even here should we be at a loss about anything, if we are acquainted even
slightly with figurative modes of expression, and able to rise above them.
52. And Trypho
said, It is possible that the mode of eating may be thus explained: in which it
is written, they took and ate what had been prepared by Abraham: so that you may
now proceed to explain to us how this God who appeared to Abraham, and is
minister to God the Maker of all things, being born of the Virgin, became man,
of like passions with all, as you said previously.