Updated : Dec 02, 2019 in Personal Growth


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, . Chapter 1. Occasion of the epistle. Most excellent Diognetus: I can see that you deeply desire to learn how Christians worship their God. You have so carefully. A late 2d century apology addressed to a certain Diognetus who is otherwise unknown. Diognetus was a tutor of the emperor Marcus Aurelius, who admired him.

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Diognetus was the name of a tutor of the emperor Marcus Aurelius[4] who admired him for his freedom from superstition and sound educational advice. Well, there you have it. To glory in the circumcision of the flesh as a proof of election—as though because of it they are especially loved by God—how can this not be a subject of ridicule? Do you not see them exposed to wild beasts, that they may be persuaded to deny the Lord, and yet not overcome?

Only a few are well known—men like Plato, Aristotle, and Socrates as well letfer Pythagoras and Euclid of geometry fame. You will find this is true in Scripture as well, where the early church usage holds up much better.

They love all menand are persecuted by all.

No man has seen him or made him known, but he has revealed himself. With regard to dress, food and manner of life in general, they follow the customs of whatever city they happen to be living in, whether it is Greek or foreign.

Philosophy thrived in Greece and Rome at that time, and knowledge was everything. He marvels that they can’t figure out that food can’t defile a person.

Email Name Don’t worry—your e-mail address is totally secure. I often update the diignetus on these, too, doing my best not to affect even possible meanings. Every foreign land is to them as their native country, and every land of their birth as a land of strangers.

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It is very hard to find a better introduction to late 1st century Christianity than the Letter to Diognetus. By whom else was it possible that we, the wicked and ungodly, could be justified, other than by the only Son of God? This does not seem to be the work of man: It is not an endowment of merely human mysteries that has been commetted to them, but truly God himself, who is omnipotent, the Creator of everything, and invisible, has sent the Truth from heaven— the diognetuss and unfathomable Word —placed him among men and firmly established him in their hearts.


As long as he held and preserved his wise counsel in concealment, he seemed to neglect us and have no care for us. They pass their days upon earth, but they are citizens of heaven. This does not seem to be the work of man. He sent his only-begotten Son to us. He is, however, familiar with Christian arguments made by those letteg are familiar with the Scriptures. They especially liked Plato, both a philosopher and poet, whose verses they often used to prove there was one God the Creator.

It’s the one who, in whatever way he really is superior, is prepared to help anyone who might be deficient. At the bottom of the article, feel free to list any sources that support your changes, so that we can fully understand their context.

The soul loves the flesh that hates it, as well as its parts. I am learning from these quotes a…. The Epistle of Mathetes to Diognetus Greek: But it letteer not the tree of knowledge that destroys; it is disobedience that proves destructive.

So although the Letter to Diognetus doesn’t appeal to Scriptural arguments, it is clear that the author has heard the same arguments that are ot more scripturally in later 2nd century writings. Google Search Privacy Statement Christian-history. They live in their own countries, but they do so as those who are just passing through.

Epistle to Diognetus

They play their full role as citizens, but labor under all the disabilities of aliens. Is not a sixth earthenware, in no degree more valuable than that which is formed for the humblest purposes?

The Epistle survived lftter in tto manuscript which was located in Strasbourg and was destroyed in a fire during the Franco-Prussian War in the year They live in their own countries as though they were only passing through. They pass their days on earth, but they are citizens of heaven.


But he who combines knowledge with fearand seeks after life, plants in hope, looking for fruit. Was it then, as one might conceive, for the purpose of exercising tyranny, or of inspiring fear and terror? A stone, however, readily bears it, seeing it is insensible. If you possess this tree and exhibit its fruit, then you will always reap those things which God desires, which the snake cannot reach, and to which deception diogjetus not come near.

This is a Scriptural thought. Isn’t a third wood and lehter rotting at that? A stone, however, readily endures it because it has no feeling. Letter to Diognetus The Letter to Diognetus is longer than my typical web page. Are they not all corruptible?

Letter to Diognetus | early Christian work |

He has arranged everything, placing everything within its proper limits. The soul dwells in the body, yet is not fo the body; and Christians dwell in the world, yet are not of ketter world. Their teaching is not based upon reveries inspired by the curiosity of men.

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 lettter.

No one can become an imitator of God through these things.

For God, the Lord and Fashioner of all things, who made all things, and who assigned them their various positions, has proven himself not only a Friend of mankind, but also patient. Thus, the Letter to Diognetus can tell us that we should begin by imitating him. Legter Literature Publishing Co.