« AnteriorContinuar »
good witness in this case, having lived part of his CHAP.III. time together with Chrysostom. For he had wrote Scar uiter sereral books before that history; and he had com-stjes
the apo pleted that history in 410. So that he must have 340. been born before St. Chrysostom died, which was anno 407.
.30; Sect. 9. Of St. Ambrose. There is no account of his parents being Christians
at the time of his birth. I. St. Ambrose's case is just the same with that of Vectarius. And he himself, after he had heard bow Vectarius was chosen bishop of Constantinople, said. I was utterly unwilling to be ordained ; and, "when there was no remeds, desired that at lea-t * ms onlination might be delayed for a longer time. • But the rule of the church could not prevail; the • force of the penple prevailed.
prevailed. Yet the western bishops hare approve of my onlination by their
consent, and the eastern by their doing the same *thing! The rule or prescription that he peaks of is that mentioned by St. Paul. 1 Tim. iii. 6, which canon. it seems the penple would by forre have to be dispensed with, when they had an extraordinary opinion of a man.
He was a larman, and was convernor under l'alestinian the empemr, of sone provinces of Gallia (a pina: and when the people of Milan (which was one of the cities under his governant) Pr ater the death of furentius their bishop, in a tumolt ahoat choosing another, he came to kop.p the peace, and persua te them to quinone and concopu. He spoke to them so handsomely and so grorly,
Est. $.. ai Verteilen:. Eccles. Eouse.m} whir Benettas
A, FL. IT.
CHAP.III. that all parties agreed on a sudden to pitch upon Year after him for bishop m. He opposed it what he could : the apo
but they sent to the emperor for his consent, be274. cause he was at that time the emperor's minister.
And he said, 'He was very glad that the men he chose for governors were so well liked by the * people, that they would choose the same for bi
shops. So he gave his consent, but yet he would not determine the choice, as being a thing out of his sphere. He ordered the bishops then present in or about the city to direct the choice of the people, who continued resolute for Ambrose. But Ambrose was not as yet baptized. He received baptism at the hands of Simplicianus ", and within eight days was ordained bishop.
II. Our business being to inquire why he was not baptized in infancy; the antipædobaptists would have it that he was born of Christian parents: and some of them stick not to say, that Paulinus in his life says he was. But Paulinus does not say so. What he says of his father is this, that he was a nobleman of Rome, and governor of Gallia. But
he was the less likely to be a Christian for that: 233. the senate and great men of Rome being the last
body of men in the empire that came over to the 191. Christian faith. Insomuch that a long time after
this, when St. Ambrose was an old man, Valentinian the second had much ado to withstand the attempt made by the senate to bring again into fashion the heathen worship. So says St. Anibrose
m Paulinus in vita. (Ambrosii, apud Op. tom. ii. Append. edit. Benedict.] Rufinus, Hist. Eccl. lib. ii. c. u. Socr. lib. iv. c. 30. Sozomen. [lib. vi. c. 24.) Theodoret. lib. iv. c. 6.
n Augustin. Confess. lib. viii. c. 2.
at his funeral, . Before his death he refused to grant • the privileges of the temples, when such men stood Year after
up for them, of whom he might well be afraid. stles. • Whole crowds of heathen men came about him ; *the senate petitioned. He was not afraid for the * sake of Christ to incur the displeasure of men." And if one may guess by circumstances, he lost the empire and his life in this quarrel; Eugenius the usurper, that prevailed against him, having all the heathen party on his side: who restored those heathen altars which Valentinian had denied, and set up temples of Jupiter P. And Argobastes had threatened, if he overcame Theodosius, to make the great church at Milan (the St. Paul's of that city) ‘a
stable for his horses ? ; because they would not communicate with Eugenius, nor receive his offering, as being an usurper.
But better news came to town quickly, as I shewed before in the history of Valentinian
I bring in this to shew, that when Paulinus makes St. Ambrose's father to have been a great man at Rome; that is no argument that he was a Christian. But indeed Paulinus, or whoever wrote that life, (for Erasmus s takes it to be a forgery of some late monk, as I observed before,) knew so little of his father's concerns, that he did not know his name. He makes his name to be Ambrosius, because the son's was so: but his name, if his son
• Orat, in obitum Valentiniani. (Op. tom. ii. p. 1173, &c. ed. Benedict.]
P Paulinus in vita Ambrosii, Op. tom. ii. Append. edit.
CHAP.111. knew better, was Symmachus. Though the life
writers copying one out of another, do to this day Year after
call him Ambrosius. He seems to have died while stles.
St. Ambrose was young.
But at the time when St. Ambrose was come to man's estate, Paulinus does indeed say that his mother was a widow, and dwelt at Rome, and was then a Christian : if that would avail any thing to prove that her husband or she were so formerly, when he was born.
III. On the contrary, a strong proof that they were not, is that which he says of himself, that he was not brought up in the bosom of the church. For in his second book De Pænitentia, cap. 8, speaking of his own unworthiness, and unfitness to be a bishop, he says it will be said of him, · Ecce
ille, non in ecclesiæ nutritus sinu,'&c. • Lo! this * man that was not brought up in the bosom of the • church,' &c.
As for what St. Ambrose's own thoughts were of the necessity of infant-baptism, it appears by his words cited before u, that he made it a great question, “whether a child could be saved without it.'
Sect. 10. Of St. Hierome.
baptized in infancy.
t Ambros. Orat. in obitum Satyri. [Op. tom. ii. p. $113, &c.] u Part i. chap. 13. §. 2.
ia tie gadies of the sole, ad the learning co-CHAP INI ved in them, are preserved; racs of the chiens et there kafe may be peked out of them.
Lahat be bas said of Los or the area passar of the life airead, or asbes else as des; there is no gourd to quo
barca in infazer, erapt an obecure parts
be the same words and those Poss two lezzers that he wrote to me
onius, Du CHAP.IN. in relating Year after
he did not
on him in
expressions lo ever use
of Christ. ot use, for as a badge
d by his last