The First Epistle of Clement to the Corinthians1 25
1 Let us consider that wonderful sign [of the resurrection] which takes place in Eastern lands, that is, in Arabia and the countries round about. 2 There is a certain bird which is called a phoenix. This is the only one of its kind, and lives five hundred years. And when the time of its dissolution draws near that it must die, it builds itself a nest of frankincense, and myrrh, and other spices, into which, when the time is fulfilled, it enters and dies. 3 But as the flesh decays a certain kind of worm is produced, which, being nourished by the juices of the dead bird, brings forth feathers. Then, when it has acquired strength, it takes up that nest in which are the bones of its parent, and bearing these it passes from the land of Arabia into Egypt, to the city called Heliopolis. 4 And, in open day, flying in the sight of all men, it places them on the altar of the sun, and having done this, hastens back to its former abode. 5 The priests then inspect the registers of the dates, and find that it has returned exactly as the five hundredth year was completed.
Chapter XXVI.—We Shall Rise Again, Then, as the Scripture Also Testifies.26
1 Do we then deem it any great and wonderful thing for the Maker of all things to raise up again those that have piously served Him in the assurance of a good faith, when even by a bird He shows us the mightiness of His power to fulfil His promise?
2 For [the Scripture] saith in a certain place, “Thou shalt raise me up, and I shall confess unto Thee; (Ps 3,6)“ and again, “I laid me down, and slept; I awaked, because Thou art with me; “(Ps 22,4)
6 and again, Job says, “Thou shalt raise up this flesh of mine, which has suffered all these things.”(Jb 19,26)
Chapter XXVII.—In the Hope of the Resurrection, Let Us Cleave to the Omnipotent and Omniscient God.
1 Having then this hope, let our souls be bound to Him who is faithful in His promises, and just in His judgments.
2 He who has commanded us not to lie, shall much more Himself not lie; for nothing is impossible with God, except to lie.
3 Let His faith therefore be stirred up again within us, and let us consider that all things are nigh unto Him.
4 By the word of His might He established all things, and by His word He can overthrow them.
5 “Who shall say unto Him, What hast thou done? or, Who shall resist the power of His strength? (Sg 12,12 Sg 11,22)”110 When and as He pleases He will do all things, and none of the things determined by Him shall pass away.
6 All things are open before Him, and nothing can be hidden from His counsel.
7 “The heavens declare the glory of God, and the firmament showeth His handy-work. Day unto day uttereth speech, and night unto night showeth knowledge. And there are no words or speeches of which the voices are not heard.”(Ps 18,24).
Chapter XXVIII.—God Sees All Things: Therefore Let Us Avoid Transgression.
1 Since then all things are seen and heard [by God], let us fear Him, and forsake those wicked works which proceed from evil desires;so that, through His mercy, we may be protected from the judgments to come.
2 For whither can any of us flee from His mighty hand? Or what world will receive any of those who run away from Him?
3 For the Scripture saith in a certain place, “Whither shall I go, and where shall I be hid from Thy presence? If I ascend into heaven, Thou art there; if I go away even to the uttermost parts of the earth, there is Thy right hand; if I make my bed in the abyss, there is Thy Spirit.”(Ps 138,7-10).
4 Whither, then, shall any one go, or where shall he escape from Him who comprehends all things?
Chapter XXIX.—Let Us Also Draw Near to God in Purity of Heart.29
1 Let us then draw near to Him with holiness of spirit, lifting up pure and undefiled hands unto Him, loving our gracious and merciful Father, who has made us partakers in the blessings of His elect.
2 For thus it is written, “When the Most High divided the nations, when He scattered117 the sons of Adam, He fixed the bounds of the nations according to the number of the angels of God. His people Jacob became the portion of the Lord, and Israel the lot of His inheritance.(Dt 32,8-9)”
3 And in another place [the Scripture] saith, “Behold, the Lord taketh unto Himself a nation out of the midst of the nations, as a man takes the first-fruits of his threshing-floor; and from that nation shall come forth the Most Holy.(cf. Dt 4,34 Nb 18,27 2Co 31,14 Ez 18,12 Dt 14,2).
Chapter XXX.—Let Us Do Those Things that Please God, and Flee from Those He Hates, that We May Be Blessed.
1 Seeing, therefore, that we are the portion of the Holy One, let us do all those things which pertain to holiness, avoiding all evil-speaking, all abominable and impure embraces, together with all drunkenness, seeking after change,120 all abominable lusts, detestable adultery, and execrable pride.
2 “For God,” saith [the Scripture], “resisteth the proud, but giveth grace to the humble.(Pr 3,34)”
3 Let us cleave, then, to those to whom grace has been given by God. Let us clothe ourselves with concord and humility, ever exercising self-control, standing far off from all whispering and evil-speaking, being justified by our works, and not our words.
4 For [the Scripture] saith, “He that speaketh much, shall also hear much in answer. And does he that is ready in speech deem himself righteous?
5 Blessed is he that is born of woman, who liveth but a short time: be not given to much speaking.(Jb 11,2-3) ”
6 Let our praise be in God, and not of ourselves; for God hateth those that commend themselves.
7 Let testimony to our good deeds be borne by others, as it was in the case of our righteous forefathers.
8 Boldness, and arrogance, and audacity belong to those that are accursed of God; but moderation, humility, and meekness to such as are blessed by Him.
Chapter XXXI.—Let Us See by What Means We May Obtain the Divine Blessing.
1 Let us cleave then to His blessing, and consider what are the means123 of possessing it. Let us think over the things which have taken place from the beginning.
2 For what reason was our father Abraham blessed? was it not because he wrought righteousness and truth through faith?
3 Isaac, with perfect confidence, as if knowing what was to happen,126 cheerfully yielded himself as a sacrifice
4 Jacob, through reason128 of his brother, went forth with humility from his own land, and came to Laban and served him; and there was given to him the sceptre of the twelve tribes of Israel.
Chapter XXXII.—We are Justified Not by Our Own Works, But by Faith.
1 Whosoever will candidly consider each particular, will recognise the greatness of the gifts which were given by him.
2 For from him130 have sprung the priests and all the Levites who minister at the altar of God. From him also [was descended] our Lord Jesus Christ according to the flesh.131 From him [arose] kings, princes, and rulers of the race of Judah. Nor are his other tribes in small glory, inasmuch as God had promised, “Thy seed shall be as the stars of heaven.(Gn 15,5)”
3 All these, therefore, were highly honoured, and made great, not for their own sake, or for their own works, or for the righteousness which they wrought, but through the operation of His will. And we, too, being called by His will in Christ Jesus, are not justified by ourselves, nor by our own wisdom, or understanding, or godliness, or works which we have wrought in holiness of heart; but by that faith through which, from the beginning, Almighty God has justified all men; to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.
Chapter XXXIII.—But Let Us Not Owe Up the Practice of Good Works and Love. God Himself is an Example to Us of Good Works.
1 What shall we do, then, brethren? Shall we become slothful in well-doing, and cease from the practice of love? God forbid that any such course should be followed by us! But rather let us hasten with all energy and readiness of mind to perform every good work.
2 For the Creator and Lord of all Himself rejoices in His works.
3 For by His infinitely great power He established the heavens, and by His incomprehensible wisdom He adorned them. He also divided the earth from the water which surrounds it, and fixed it upon the immoveable foundation of His own will. The animals also which are upon it He commanded by His own word133 into existence. So likewise, when He had formed the sea, and the living creatures which are in it, He enclosed them [within their proper bounds] by His own power.
4 Above all, with His holy and undefiled hands He formed man, the most excellent [of His creatures], and truly great through the understanding given him—the express likeness of His own image.
5 For thus says God: “Let us make man in Our image, and after Our likeness. So God made man; male and female He created them.(Gn 1,26-27)”
6 Having thus finished all these things, He approved them, and blessed them, and said, “Increase and multiply.”
7 We see, then, how all righteous men have been adorned with good works, and how the Lord Himself, adorning Himself with His works, rejoiced.
8 Having therefore such an example, let us without delay accede to His will, and let us work the work of righteousness with our whole strength.
Chapter XXXIV.—Great is the Reward of Good Works with God. Joined Together in Harmony, Let Us Implore that Reward from Him.
1 The good servant138 receives the bread of his labour with confidence; the lazy and slothful cannot look his employer in the face.
2 It is requisite, therefore, that we be prompt in the practice of well-doing; for of Him are all things.
3 And thus He forewarns us: “Behold, the Lord [cometh], and His reward is before His face, to render to every man according to his work.(Is 40,10 Is 62,11 Pr 24,12 Ap 22,12)”
4 He exhorts us, therefore, with our whole heart to attend to this,140 that we be not lazy or slothful in any good work(Tt 3,1).
5 Let our boasting and our confidence be in Him. Let us submit ourselves to His will. Let us consider the whole multitude of His angels, how they stand ever ready to minister to His will.
6 For the Scripture saith, “Ten thousand times ten thousand stood around Him, and thousands of thousands ministered unto Him (),141 and cried, Holy, holy, holy, [is] the Lord of Sabaoth; the whole creation is full of His glory.(Is 6,3)”
7 And let us therefore, conscientiously gathering together in harmony, cry to Him earnestly, as with one mouth, that we may be made partakers of His great and glorious promises. For [the Scripture] saith,
8 “Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which He hath prepared for them that wait for Him.”(Is 64,4).
Chapter XXXV.—Immense is This Reward. How Shall We Obtain It?
1 How blessed and wonderful, beloved, are the gifts of God!
2 Life in immortality, splendour in righteousness, truth in perfect confidence,144 faith in assurance, self-control in holiness! And all these fall under the cognizance of our understandings [now];
3 what then shall those things be which are prepared for such as wait for Him? The Creator and Father of all worlds,145 the Most Holy, alone knows their amount and their beauty.
4 Let us therefore earnestly strive to be found in the number of those that wait for Him, in order that we may share in His promised gifts.
5 But how, beloved, shall this be done? If our understanding be fixed by faith rewards God; if we earnestly seek the things which are pleasing and acceptable to Him; if we do the things which are in harmony with His blameless will; and if we follow the way of truth, casting away from us all unrighteousness and iniquity, along with all covetousness, strife, evil practices, deceit, whispering, and evil-speaking, all hatred of God, pride and haughtiness, vainglory and ambition.
6 For they that do such things are hateful to God; and not only they that do them, but also those that take pleasure in them that do them.
7 For the Scripture saith, “But to the sinner God said, Wherefore dost thou declare my statutes, and take my covenant into thy mouth, seeing thou hatest instruction, and castest my words behind thee?
8 When thou sawest a thief, thou consentedst with148 him, and didst make thy portion with adulterers. Thy mouth has abounded with wickedness, and thy tongue contrived149 deceit. Thou sittest, and speakest against thy brother; thou slanderest thine own mother’s son.
9 These things thou hast done, and I kept silence; thou thoughtest, wicked one, that I should be like to thyself.
10 But I will reprove thee, and set thyself before thee.
11 Consider now these things, ye that forget God, lest He tear you in pieces, like a lion, and there be none to deliver.
12 The sacrifice of praise will glorify Me, and a way is there by which I will show him the salvation of God.”(Ps 49,16-23).
Chapter XXXVI.—All Blessings are Given to Us Through Christ.
1 This is the way, beloved, in which we find our Saviour,152 even Jesus Christ, the High Priest of all our offerings, the defender and helper of our infirmity. By Him we look up to the heights of heaven.
2 By Him we behold, as in a glass, His immaculate and most excellent visage. By Him are the eyes of our hearts opened. By Him our foolish and darkened understanding blossoms153 up anew towards His marvellous light. By Him the Lord has willed that we should taste of immortal knowledge,154 “who, being the brightness of His majesty, is by so much greater than the angels, as He hath by inheritance obtained a more excellent name than they.(He 1,3-4)”.
3 For it is thus written, “Who maketh His angels spirits, and His ministers a flame of fire.(Ps 103,4).”
4 But concerning His Son the Lord spoke thus: “Thou art my Son, to-day have I begotten Thee. Ask of Me, and I will give Thee the heathen for Thine inheritance, and the uttermost parts of the earth for Thy possession.(Ps 2,7-8)”.
5 And again He saith to Him, “Sit Thou at My right hand, until I make Thine enemies Thy footstool.”(Ps 109,1).
6 But who are His enemies? All the wicked, and those who set themselves to oppose the will of God.
Chapter XXXVII.—Christ is Our Leader, and We His Soldiers.
1 Let us then, men and brethren, with all energy act the part of soldiers, in accordance with His holy commandments. 2 Let us consider those who serve under our generals, with what order, obedience, and submissiveness they perform the things which are commanded them.
3 All are not prefects, nor commanders of a thousand, nor of a hundred, nor of fifty, nor the like, but each one in his own rank performs the things commanded by the king and the generals.
4 The great cannot subsist without the small, nor the small without the great. There is a kind of mixture in all things, and thence arises mutual advantage. Let us take our body for an example.
5 The head is nothing without the feet, and the feet are nothing without the head; yea, the very smallest members of our body are necessary and useful to the whole body. But all work harmoniously together, and are under one common rule for the preservation of the whole body.
Chapter XXXVIII.—Let the Members of the Church Submit Themselves, and No One Exalt Himself Above Another.
1 Let our whole body, then, be preserved in, Christ Jesus; and let every one be subject to his neighbour, according to the special gift bestowed upon him.
2 Let the strong not despise the weak, and let the weak show respect unto the strong. Let the rich man provide for the wants of the poor; and let the poor man bless God, because He hath given him one by whom his need may be supplied. Let the wise man display his wisdom, not by [mere] words, but through good deeds. Let the humble not bear testimony to himself, but leave witness to be borne to him by another.
3 Let him that is pure in the flesh not grow proud167 of it, and boast, knowing that it was another who bestowed on him the gift of continence. Let us consider, then, brethren, of what matter we were made,—who and what manner of beings we came into the world, as it were out of a sepulchre, and from utter darkness.168 He who made us and fashioned us, having prepared His bountiful gifts for us before we were born, introduced us into His world.
4 Since, therefore, we receive all these things from Him, we ought for everything to give Him thanks; to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.
Chapter XXXIX.—There is No Reason for Self-Conceit.
1 Foolish and inconsiderate men, who have neither wisdom nor instruction, mock and deride us, being eager to exalt themselves in their own conceits.
2 For what can a mortal man do? or what strength is there in one made out of the dust?
3 For it is written, “There was no shape before mine eyes, only I heard a sound,170 and a voice [saying],
4 What then? Shall a man be pure before the Lord? or shall such an one be [counted] blameless in his deeds, seeing He does not confide in His servants, and has charged even His angels with perversity?
5 The heaven is not clean in His sight: how much less they that dwell in houses of clay, of which also we ourselves were made! He smote them as a moth; and from morning even until evening they endure not. Because they could furnish no assistance to themselves, they perished.
6 He breathed upon them, and they died, because they had no wisdom.
7 But call now, if any one will answer thee, or if thou wilt look to any of the holy angels; for wrath destroys the foolish man, and envy killeth him that is in error.
8 I have seen the foolish taking root, but their habitation was presently consumed.
9 Let their sons be far from safety; let them be despised before the gates of those less than themselves, and there shall be none to deliver. For what was prepared for them, the righteous shall eat; and they shall not be delivered from evil.”(Jb 4,16-5,5).
Chapter XL.—Let Us Preserve in the Church the Order Appointed by God.
1 These things therefore being manifest to us, and since we look into the depths of the divine knowledge, it behoves us to do all things in [their proper] order, which the Lord has commanded us to perform at stated times.
2 He has enjoined offerings [to be presented] and service to be performed [to Him], and that not thoughtlessly or irregularly, but at the appointed times and hours.
3 Where and by whom He desires these things to be done, He Himself has fixed by His own supreme will, in order that all things being piously done according to His good pleasure, may be acceptable unto Him.
4 Those, therefore, who present their offerings at the appointed times, are accepted and blessed; for inasmuch as they follow the laws of the Lord, they sin not.
5 For his own peculiar services are assigned to the high priest, and their own proper place is prescribed to the priests, and their own special ministrations devolve on the Levites. The layman is bound by the laws that pertain to laymen.
Chapter XLI.—Continuation of the Same Subject.
1 Let every one of you, brethren, give thanks to God in his own order, living in all good conscience, with becoming gravity, and not going beyond the rule of the ministry prescribed to him.
2 Not in every place, brethren, are the daily sacrifices offered, or the peace-offerings, or the sin-offerings and the trespass-offerings, but in Jerusalem only. And even there they are not offered in any place, but only at the altar before the temple, that which is offered being first carefully examined by the high priest and the ministers already mentioned.
3 Those, therefore, who do anything beyond that which is agreeable to His will, are punished with death.
4 Ye see, brethren, that the greater the knowledge that has been vouchsafed to us, the greater also is the danger to which we are exposed.
Chapter XLII.—The Order of Ministers in the Church.
1 The apostles have preached the Gospel to us from the Lord Jesus Christ; Jesus Christ [has done sol from God. 2 Christ therefore was sent forth by God, and the apostles by Christ. Both these appointments, then, were made in an orderly way, according to the will of God.
3 Having therefore received their orders, and being fully assured by the resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ, and established in the word of God, with full assurance of the Holy Ghost, they went forth proclaiming that the kingdom of God was at hand.
4 And thus preaching through countries and cities, they appointed the first-fruits [of their labours], having first proved them by the Spirit, to be bishops and deacons of those who should afterwards believe. Nor was this any new thing, since indeed many ages before it was written concerning bishops and deacons.
5 For thus saith the Scripture in a certain place, “I will appoint their bishops in righteousness, and their deacons in faith.”(Is 60,17).
Chapter XLIII.—Moses of Old Stilled the Contention Which Arose Concerning the Priestly Dignity.
1 And what wonder is it if those in Christ who were entrusted with such a duty by God, appointed those [ministers] before mentioned, when the blessed Moses also, “a faithful servant in all his house,(Nb 12,7)” noted down in the sacred books all the injunctions which were given him, and when the other prophets also followed him, bearing witness with one consent to the ordinances which he had appointed?
2 For, when rivalry arose concerning the priesthood, and the tribes were contending among themselves as to which of them should be adorned with that glorious title, he commanded the twelve princes of the tribes to bring him their rods, each one being inscribed with the name of the tribe. And he took them and bound them [together], and sealed them with the rings of the princes of the tribes, and laid them up in the tabernacle of witness on the table of God.
3 And having shut the doors of the tabernacle, he sealed the keys, as he had done the rods, and said to them,
4 Men and brethren, the tribe whose rod shall blossom has God chosen to fulfil the office of the priesthood, and to minister unto Him.
5 And when the morning was come, he assembled all Israel, six hundred thousand men, and showed the seals to the princes of the tribes, and opened the tabernacle of witness, and brought forth the rods. And the rod of Aaron was found not only to have blossomed, but to bear fruit upon it.
6 What think ye, beloved? Did not Moses know beforehand that this would happen? Undoubtedly he knew; but he acted thus, that there might be no sedition in Israel, and that the name of the true and only God might be glorified; to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.
Chapter XLIV.—The Ordinances of the Apostles, that There Might Be No Contention Respecting the Priestly Office.
1 Our apostles also knew, through our Lord Jesus Christ, and there would be strife on account of the office188 of the episcopate.
2 For this reason, therefore, inasmuch as they had obtained a perfect fore-knowledge of this, they appointed those [ministers] already mentioned, and afterwards gave instructions,189 that when these should fall asleep, other approved men should succeed them in their ministry.
3 We are of opinion, therefore, that those appointed by them, or afterwards by other eminent men, with the consent of the whole Church, and who have blame-lessly served the flock of Christ in a humble, peaceable, and disinterested spirit, and have for a long time possessed the good opinion of all, cannot be justly dismissed from the ministry.
4 For our sin will not be small, if we eject from the episcopate those who have blamelessly and holily fulfilled its duties.
5 Blessed are those presbyters who, having finished their course before now, have obtained a fruitful and perfect departure [from this world]; for they have no fear lest any one deprive them of the place now appointed them.
6 But we see that ye have removed some men of excellent behaviour from the ministry, which they fulfilled blamelessly and with honour.
Chapter XLV.—It is the Part of the Wicked to Vex the Righteous.
1 Ye are fond of contention, brethren, and full of zeal about things which do not pertain to salvation.
2 Look carefully into the Scriptures, which are the true utterances of the Holy Spirit.
3 Observe that nothing of an unjust or counterfeit character is written in them. There you will not find that the righteous were cast off by men who themselves were holy.
4 The righteous were indeed persecuted, but only by the wicked. They were cast into prison, but only by the unholy; they were stoned, but only by transgressors; they were slain, but only by the accursed, and such as had conceived an unrighteous envy against them.
5 Exposed to such sufferings, they endured them gloriously.
6 For what shall we say, brethren? Was Daniel195 cast into the den of lions by such as feared God?
7 Were Ananias, and Azarias, and Mishael shut up in a furnace of fire by those who observed the great and glorious worship of the Most High? Far from us be such a thought! Who, then, were they that did such things? The hateful, and those full of all wickedness, were roused to such a pitch of fury, that they inflicted torture on those who served God with a holy and blameless purpose [of heart], not knowing that the Most High is the Defender and Protector of all such as with a pure conscience venerate198 His all-excellent name; to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.
8 But they who with confidence endured [these things] are now heirs of glory and honour, and have been exalted and made illustrious by God in their memorial for ever and ever. Amen.
Chapter XLVI.—Let Us Cleave to the Righteous: Your Strife is Pernicious.
1 Such examples, therefore, brethren, it is right that we should follow;
2 since it is written, “Cleave to the holy, for those that cleave to them shall [themselves] be made holy.”
3 And again, in another place, [the Scripture] saith, “With a harmless man thou shalt prove thyself harmless, and with an elect man thou shalt be elect, and with a perverse man thou shalt show thyself perverse.(Ps 17,26-27)”.
4 Let us cleave, therefore, to the innocent and righteous, since these are the elect of God.
5 Why are there strifes, and tumults, and divisions, and schisms, and wars among you?
6 Have we not [all] one God and one Christ? Is there not one Spirit of grace poured out upon us? And have we not one calling in Christ?
7 Why do we divide and tear to pieces the members of Christ, and raise up strife against our own body, and have reached such a height of madness as to forget that “we are members one of another? ” Remember the words of our Lord Jesus Christ, how He said,
8 “Woe to that man [by whom209 offences come]! It were better for him that he had never been born, than that he should cast a stumbling-block before one of my elect. Yea, it were better for him that a millstone should be hung about [his neck], and he should be sunk in the depths of the sea, than that he should cast a stumbling-block before one of my little ones(Mt 26,24 Lc 17,2).
9 Your schism has subverted [the faith of] many, has discouraged many, has given rise to doubt in many, and has caused grief to us all. And still your sedition continueth.
Chapter XLVII.—Your Recent Discord is Worse Than the Former Which Took Place in the Times of Paul.
1 Take up the epistle of the blessed Apostle Paul.
2 What did he write to you at the time when the Gospel first began to be preached? Truly, under the inspiration212 of the Spirit, he wrote to you concerning himself, and Cephas, and Apollos, because even then parties214 had been formed among you.
4 But that inclination for one above another entailed less guilt upon you, inasmuch as your partialities were then shown towards apostles, already of high reputation, and towards a man whom they had approved.
5 But now reflect who those are that have perverted you, and lessened the renown of your far-famed brotherly love.
6 It is disgraceful, beloved, yea, highly disgraceful, and unworthy of your Christian profession, that such a thing should be heard of as that the most stedfast and ancient Church of the Corinthians should, on account of one or two persons, engage in sedition against its presbyters. 7 And this rumour has reached not only us, but those also who are unconnected with us; so that, through your infatuation, the name of the Lord is blasphemed, while danger is also brought upon yourselves.
Chapter XLVIII.—Let Us Return to the Practice of Brotherly Love.
1 Let us therefore, with all haste, put an end to this [state of things]; and let us fall down before the Lord, and beseech Him with tears, that He would mercifully be reconciled to us, and restore us to our former seemly and holy practice of brotherly love.
2 For [such conduct] is the gate of righteousness, which is set open for the attainment of life, as it is written, “Open to me the gates of righteousness; I will go in by them, and will praise the Lord:
3 this is the gate of the Lord: the righteous shall enter in by it.(Ps 117,19-20).”
4 Although, therefore, many gates have been set open, yet this gate of righteousness is that gate in Christ by which blessed are all they that have entered in and have directed their way in holiness and righteousness(Lc 1,75), doing all things without disorder.
5 Let a man be faithful: let him be powerful in the utterance of knowledge; let him be wise in judging of words; let him be pure in all his deeds;
6 yet the more he seems to be superior to others [in these respects], the more humble-minded ought he to be, and to seek the common good of all, and not merely his own advantage.
Chapter XLIX.—The Praise of Love.
4 Let him who has love in Christ keep the commandments of Christ.
5 Who can describe the [blessed] bond of the love of God? What man is able to tell the excellence of its beauty, as it ought to be told (1P 4,8)? The height to which love exalts is unspeakable. Love unites us to God. Love covers a multitude of sins. Love beareth all things, is long-suffering in all things. There is nothing base, nothing arrogant in love. Love admits of no schisms: love gives rise to no seditions: love does all things in harmony.
6 By love have all the elect of God been made perfect; without love nothing is well-pleasing to God. In love has the Lord taken us to Himself. On account of the Love he bore us, Jesus Christ our Lord gave His blood for us by the will of God; His flesh for our flesh, and His soul for our souls.
Chapter L.—Let Us Pray to Be Thought Worthy of Love.
1 Ye see, beloved, how great and wonderful a thing is love, and that there is no declaring its perfection.
2 Who is fit to be found in it, except such as God has vouchsafed to render so? Let us pray, therefore, and implore of His mercy, that we may live blameless in love, free from all human partialities for one above another.
3 All the generations from Adam even unto this day have passed away; but those who, through the grace of God, have been made perfect in love, now possess a place among the godly, and shall be made manifest at the revelation223 of the kingdom of Christ.
4 For it is written, “Enter into thy secret chambers for a little time, until my wrath and fury pass away; and I will remember a propitious224 day, and will raise you up out of your graves.”
5 Blessed are we, beloved, if we keep the commandments of God in the harmony of love; that so through love our sins may be forgiven us.
6 For it is written, “Blessed are they whose transgressions are forgiven, and whose sins are covered. Blessed is the man whose sin the Lord will not impute to him, and in whose mouth there is no guile.(Ps 31,1-2)”
7 This blessedness cometh upon those who have been chosen by God through Jesus Christ our Lord; to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.
Chapter LI.—Let the Partakers in Strife Acknowledge Their Sins.
The First Epistle of Clement to the Corinthians1 25