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This type of writing is also called an apologetics letter or an apology. Although neither author nor recipient is known for certain, the Letter to Diognetus purports . Letter to Diognetus, an early Christian apologetic work probably dating from the 2nd or 3rd century ad. It is often included with the works of the Apostolic Fathers, . The Epistle TO Diognetus. CHAPTER 1 Since I see, most excellent Diognetus , that thou art exceedingly anxious to understand the religion of the Christians.

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Letter to Diognetus

Was it then, as one might conceive, for the purpose of exercising tyranny, or of inspiring fear and terror? He can, if he is willing.

For He will yet send Him to judge us, and who shall endure His appearing? Him He sent unto them.

They are in want of all things, and yet they abound in all things. The work survived antiquity in one 13th—14th-century manuscript, which was destroyed by fire in StrasbourgFr. Would not those things which are now vessels, formed of the same materials, become like to such, if they met with the same artificers?

There are two schools as to its dating, one which favors a date approximately CE and the other which favors a date approximately CE or even later in the third century.

They are evil spoken of, and yet they are vindicated. Father of all holiness, guide our hearts to you. O benefits surpassing all expectation! The first 10 chapters of the letter discuss pagan and Jewish religions, the life of a Christian as contrasted with the life of a non-Christian, and a review of the Christian faith as the unique revelation of God.

Christians love all men, but all men persecute them.

Are not they all deaf and blind, are they not soul-less, senseless, motionless? For, who of men at all understood before His coming what God is?

Richardson, Early Christian Fathers, pp. Is not one of them a stone similar to that on which we tread? For it is not by ruling over his neighbours, or by seeking to hold the supremacy over those that are weaker, or by being rich, and showing violence towards those that are inferior, that happiness is found; nor can any one by these things become an imitator of God.

Diognetus was a tutor of the emperor Marcus Aurelius, who admired him for his freedom from superstition and sound educational spistle Meditations 1. The 13th-century manuscript was damaged in that place and the copies were made only after that damage eplstle already been done.


In ciognetos projects Wikiquote. This is He who was from the beginning, who appeared as if new, and was found old, and yet episrle is ever born afresh in the hearts of the saints.

Views Read Edit View history. God has assigned them this illustrious position, which it were unlawful for them to forsake. Certainly you do not show [by your conduct] that he [your God] is possessed of sense. Did not the sculptor fashion one of them, the brazier a second, the silversmith a third, and the potter a fourth?

They live in their own countries as though they were only passing through.

From a letter to Diognetus: The Christian in the world

Please help support the mission of New Advent and get the full contents of this website as an instant download. It is by the soul, enclosed within the body, that the body is held together, and similarly, it is by the Christians, detained in the world as in a prison, that the world is held together. Do you not much more mock and insult them, when you worship those that are made of stone and earthenware, without appointing any persons to guard them; but those made of silver and gold you shut up by night, and appoint watchers to look after them by day, lest they be stolen?

Having therefore convinced us in the former time that our nature was unable to attain to life, and having now revealed the Saviour who is able to save even those things which it was [formerly] impossible to save, by both these facts He desired to lead us to trust in His kindness, to esteem Him our Nourisher, Father, Teacher, Counsellor, Healer, our Wisdom, Light, Honour, Glory, Power, and Life, so that we should not be anxious concerning clothing and food.

Wikisource has original text related to this article: And next, I imagine that you are most desirous of hearing something on this point, that the Christians do not observe the same forms of divine worship as do the Jews. The soulwhen but ill-provided with food and drink, becomes better; in like manner, the Christiansthough subjected day by day to punishment, increase the more in epietle. They have a common table, but not a common bed. A late 2d century apology addressed to a certain Diognetus who is otherwise unknown.

Come, then, after you have freed yourself from all prejudices eiognetos your mindand laid aside what you have been accustomed to, as something apt to deceive you, and being made, as if from the beginning, a epistlle man, inasmuch as, according to your own confession, you are to be the hearer of a new [system of] doctrine; come and contemplate, diogneto with your eyes only, but with your understanding, the substance and the form of those whom you declare and deem to be gods.


Any country can be their homeland, but for them their homeland, wherever it may be, is a foreign country. It is often included diogbetos the works of the Apostolic Fathers, Greek Christian writers of the late 1st and early 2nd centuries, but it more accurately is associated with the early Riognetos primarily 1st century.

He was aware, then, of all things in His own mindalong with His Son, according to the relation subsisting between them. Unfortunately, our editorial approach may not be able to accommodate all contributions. I can eplstle that you deeply desire to learn how Christians worship their God.

I fo not sure if there is evidence to resolve the question.

Diognetus. The Epistle of Mathetes to Diognetus (translation J.B. Lightfoot).

But these things do not at all constitute His majesty. Thank You for Your Contribution! But not a single human being will, unless compelled to it, endure such treatment, since dionetos is endowed with sense and reason.

See not only with thine eyes, but with thine intellect also, of what substance or of what form they chance to be whom ye diogbetos and regard as gods. Please note that our editors may make some formatting changes or correct spelling or grammatical errors, and may also contact you if any clarifications are needed. Internet URLs are the best. Then shall you admire those who for righteousness’ sake endure the fire that is but for a moment, and shall count them happy when you shall know [the nature of] that fire.

This is Diogneto who, being from everlasting, is today called the Son; through whom the Church is enriched, and gracewidely spread, increases in the saintsfurnishing understanding, revealing mysteriesannouncing times, rejoicing over the faithfulgiving to those that seek, by whom the limits of faith are not broken through, nor the boundaries set by the fathers passed over.

Lord Byron, Episrle Romantic poet and satirist whose poetry and personality captured the imagination….