ABORTION

in the

Apocrypha and Pseudepigrapha
Just a few notes

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Codex Sinaiticus

New Testament:

from the famed discovery

 

The earliest, oldest New Testament text has finally been released to the public.  You may read the Codex Sinaiticus online - but only if you know Greek!  To read it inCodex Sinaiticus New Testament H T Anderson English English, you need the only English translation we know.  The H. T. Anderson English Translation of the Codex Sinaiticus, with the three extra early New Testament books and the Sonnini Manuscript of Acts 29 included, and the original absences of certain verses (put in there later by the 'church') is now available only at here.  

THIS IS NOT A CHEAP, SCANNED-IN FACSIMILE. This is a first edition of the text published in easy-to-read Georgia font with plenty of room between verses for your notes.2 points between verses, hard or soft cover.

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The Nazarene Acts
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Also known as
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The Ante-Nicene Fathers, 10 vols.
By Hendrickson Publishers

The Ante-Nicene Fathers ranges from the Apostolic Fathers to various third and fourth century sources including the liturgies and ancient Syriac documents. It was intended to comprise translations into English of all the extant works of the Fathers (with the exception of the more bulky works of Origen) down to the date of the first General Council held at Nicaea in 325 A.D. This American edition by Arthur Cleveland Coxe is a revision of the original series edited by Alexander Roberts and Sir James Donaldson and published in Edinburgh. The revision involves a major rearrangement to conform to the historical sequence, the addition of brief introductions and notes indicating variances in readings, specifying references to scripture or literature, clarifying obscure passages, and noting corruptions or distortions of patristic testimony (as forged in the Decretals). The basic aim of the translations has been to strive for literary exactness, placing the English reader as nearly as possible on an equal footing with those who are able to read the original.

Volume Titles:
Volume 1: Apostolic Fathers, Justin Martyr, Inrenaeus
Volume 2: Hermas, Tatian, Athenagoras, Theophilus, Clement of Alexandria
Volume 3: Tertullian
Volume 4: Tertullian (IV), Minucius Felix, Commodian, Origen
Volume 5: Hippolytus, Cyprian, Caius, Novatian, Appendix
Volume 6: Gregory Thaumaturgus, Dionysius the Great, Julius Africanus, Anatolius and Minor Writers, Methodius, Arnobius
Volume 7: Lactantius, Venantius, Asterius, Victorinus, Dionysius, Apostolic Teaching and Constitutions, Homily, and Liturgies
Volume 8: Twelve Patriarchs, Excerpts and Epistles, The Clementina, Aprocryphal Gospels and Acts, Syriac Documents
Volume 9: Gospel of Peter, Diatessaron, Testament of Abraham, Epistles of Clement, Origen and Miscellaneous Works
Volume 10: Bibliography, General Index, Annotated Index of Authors and Works

Tertullian, Cyprian, and Origen on the Lord's Prayer
By Tertullian, Cyprian & Origen; Alistair Stewart-Sykes, trans. / Svs Press

These are the only three existing ante-Nicene treatises on the Lord's Prayer. Candidates for baptism in the ancient church were trained in prayer, a practice that gave rise to a tradition of commentary on the Lord's Prayer. These classic texts became starting points for numerous later writers. 208 pages, softcover. SVS ess.
A Dictionary of Early Christian Beliefs
By David W. Bercot, ed. / Hendrickson Publishers

Interest in the ways of the early church has never been more intense. What did early Christians believe about the divinity of Christ? What did they think about resurrection? How did they regard John the Baptist? What were the beliefs of those who sat at the feet of Jesus' disciples? Now, for the first time, a unique dictionary has been developed to furnish ready answers to these questions and others like them. David W. Bercot has painstakingly combed the writings of these early Christian leaders and categorized the heart of their thinking into more than 700 theological, moral, and historical topics to create this book.

Wonderfully suited for devotional or thematic study as well as sermon illustration, this resource offers a window into the world of the early church and affords a special opportunity to examine topically the thoughts of men like Clement of Rome, Ignatius, and Polycarp, who were students of the original apostles, as well as the thoughts of other great lights in the life of the early church such as Justin Martyr, Irenaeus, and Tertullian. For anyone interested in historic Christianity, this book cannot be overlooked. This book features:

Relevant comments on key Christian concepts from prominent figures such as Origen, Clement of Alexandria, Clement of Rome, and Hippolytus
Key biblical verses associated with each topic
Brief definitions of unfamiliar terms or concepts
A "Who's Who" of Ante-Nicene Christianity to put in context the ancient Christian writers
Discussion of more than 700 key theological, moral, and historical topics
Strategic cross-references to related topics
A topical index to the writings of the Ante-Nicene Fathers

New Testament Apocrypha, Volume 1: Gospels and Related Writings, Revised
By Wilhelm Schneemelcher; R. McL. Wilson, trans. / Westminster / John Knox

This book reflects current research findings. The bibliograhpical data in all sections have been updated as well. Some of the texts have been newly translated, others completely revised. This revised edition is a translation of the sixth German edition, just as the original English New Testament Apocrypha was a translation of the third German edition. The introductions to individual texts have been either completely rewritten or thoroughly revised.

(Cf. John R.Connery, Abortion: The Development of the Roman Catholic Perspective, Chicago, Loyola Univ. Press, 1977, and Germain Grisez, "Abortion: The Myths, the Realities, and the Arguments," NY Corpus Books,1970)

1.Exodus 21.22 RSV: "When men strive together and hurt a woman with child, so that there is a miscarriage, and yet no harm follows, the one who hurt her shall be fined, according as the woman's husband shall lay upon him; and he shall pay as the judge determine. 23. If any harm follows, then you shall give life for life, eye for eye etc."

COMMENT: Hard to determine whether chief point is harm to the child or to the woman & husband. Probably chiefly the latter, but yet the harm to the child seems not ruled out. The Septuagint reads: "If two men fight and strike a woman with child, and the child that is not fully formed, comes forth, there shall be a fine according as the husband of the woman imposes, he shall set it with fair measure. But if it was fully formed he will impose life for life, eye for eye, etc."

2. Pseudo-Phocyclides, lines 184-85: "Do not let a woman destroy the unborn babe in her belly, nor after its birth throw it before the dogs and the vultures as a prey."

COMMENTS: Phocylides was an Ionic poet in Miletus, middle of sixth century BC. Was famed for useful advice for daily life. It is a part of propaganda for favor to the Jewish religion. The translator in The Old Testament Pseudepigrapha II (ed. James H. Charlesworth, Doubleday, 1985) was W. Van der Horst. He estimates the date as between 220 BC and 200 AD.
    
Note 1 on p. 580 says: "Abortion and exposure of children were the current methods of family planning in pagan antiquity. Though the OT forbids neither practice (but see the LXX translation of Ex 21:22f), they are frequently condemned (in this combination) in Jewish and Christian writings, e.g, Philo, Spec. Leg. 3:108-09; Josephus  Apion 2:202; Sib Or 2:281ff.; Did 2:2; EBar 19.5,etc."

3. Flavius Josephus, "Against Apion" 2:202: "The law [Jewish law] orders us to bring up all our children,and forbids women to cause abortion of that which is begotten; and if any woman seems to have done so, she will be a murderer of her own child, by destroying a living creature." (Probably late first century AD).

4. Sibylline Oracles 2.281-82: " ...as many as aborted what they carried in the womb, as many as cast forth their offspring unlawfully [will be punished after the resurrection]."

COMMENT: The editor in Charlesworth, J.J.Collins, estimates second century A.D. for Christian redaction, but the Jewish original was about the turn of the era. The lines cited above seem Jewish original.

5. Didache 2,2: "you shall not kill a child by abortion nor kill it after it is born."

COMMENT: date usually given as 100-150 AD.

6. Epistle of Barnabas: Those on the "way of darkness" include in 20.2, "the
murderers of children, aborting the work of God." COMMENT: Probable date
perhaps between 132 & 138 AD.

7. Tertullian, Apologeticum 9:8: For us, since murder has been forbidden, it is also not permitted to dissolve  what is conceived in the womb while the blood is being formed into a human being. It is an anticipation of murder to keep one from being born; nor does it make a difference whether one takes the life of one already born, or disturbs one in the process of being born: even the one who is going to be a human being is one." Text from
Sources Chrétiennes No.108,p.184.(Written about 197 A.D.)

8. St.Cyprian of Carthage, Epistle 52, to Cornelius: "He [the schismatic Novatian] struck the womb of his wife with his heel and hurried an abortion, thereby causing parricide." (Written about 251 AD)

9. St.Basil the Great, Epistle 138: "He who destroys the fetus deliberately is guilty of murder."  PG 36:672. (Written about 375 AD)

10. St.Jerome, Epistle 22.13: [speaking of virgins] "Others drink for sterility and commit murder on the human not yet sown. Some when they sense that they have conceived by sin, consider the poisons for abortion, and frequently die themselves along with it, and go to hell guilty of three crimes: murdering themselves, committing adultery against Christ, and murder against their unborn child." PL 22.401. (Written about 380 AD).

11. St.Ambrose, "On the Hexaemeron" 5:18: "The rich women, to avoid dividing the inheritance among many, kill their own fetus in the womb and with murderous juices extinguish in the genital chamber their children." PL 14:231. (Written about 386 AD).

12. St.John Chrysostom, "Homilies on Romans" 24: To destroy the fetus "is something worse than murder." The one who does this "does no to take away life that has already been born, but prevents it from being born." PG 60.626-27. (Written about 391 AD).

13.St.Augustine, "De nuptiis et concupiscentia" 1:15: "At times their lustful cruelty or cruel lust goes so far as to obtain poisons to cause sterility; and if this does not work,to somehow extinguish and destroy the fetus conceived within the womb, wishing the offspring to be killed before living, or if it was living in the womb, to be killed before being born." PL44:423-24. (Written about 419 AD).

14. Pope Stephen V, "Epistle to Archbishop of Mainz," Sept 14, 887 (SA 670): "If he who destroys what is conceived in the womb by abortion is a murderer, how much more is he unable to excuse himself of murder who kills a child even one day old."

15. Vatican II, Church in Modern World §51: "Therefore life starting at conception is to be guarded with the greatest care, and abortion and infanticide are abominable crimes" [nefanda sunt crimina].1

Selection from Jackson Snyder's Easy-to-understand 

 

20

:1 The path of darkness is crooked and replete with cursing, for such is the path of eternal death and punishment, and on it are snares that destroy the spirit: Idolatry, recklessness, pride of power, hypocrisy, double-mindedness, adultery, murder, rape, conceit, indiscretion, deceit, malice, self-will, witchcraft, sorcery, covetousness, lack of fear toward Elohim.[1]

2 Here persecutors of good, haters of truth, lovers of lies;

those who do not know the reward of righteousness,

those who do not hold to what is good or to equitable justice;

those who pay no attention to the widow and orphan;[2]

those who are not awakened to reverence of Elohim, but to evil instead; from whom meekness and patience are far off;

those who love the things that are useless,

those who follow after repayments,

those who have no compassion for the poor,

those who do not help the one in trouble;

those who are quick to gossip,[3]

those who care not to know who made them;

those murderers of children,[4]

those corruptors of the image of Elohim who turn aside from the poor and oppress the miserable;

those lawyers for the rich,

those judges who are unjust to the poor,

those who are sinning in every way imaginable.

21

:1 It is right for the one who has learned the ordinances of Yahweh should walk in them – even as many as have been written above. For the one who does these will be greatly esteemed in the kingdom of Elohim. However, the one choosing the opposite will perish along with that one’s works. On this first account is the resurrection; on this latter account is the reckoning.

2 I ask those among you who are of high estate: if you will receive any friendly advice from me, keep around you those to whom you may do what is honorable. Fail not in so doing. 3 For the day is at hand in which everything will perish right along with the evil one. Yahweh is near, even at hand; and so is his reward. 4 Again and again do I ask you, be good lawgivers over yourselves; be good advisers of yourselves. Remain as faithful counselor of each another; cast out all hypocrisy from among you.

5 And may Elohim, who rules the whole world, give you wisdom, understanding, discipline, Torah knowledge, and patience. 6 Be taught by Elohim, inquiring about what Yahweh wants from you, and work so you may be found saved in the Day of Judgment.

7 If there is yet any memory of the good about which I have spoken, remember me as you practice these things, so that both your wishing and your watching may turn out good. 8 Yes, I beg you, asking this as a favor. So long as you contain goodness, do not fail in any of these things, but seek them out ceaselessly and keep all the commandments, for these actions are commendable.

9 I have been very excited to write you, as far as I was able, so that I might make you happy. Good-bye, you children of love and shalom! May the Elohim of Kavod and of all favor be with your spirit! Amein!

Get the book at www.apostolia.us.

[1] Galatians 5:19-21.

[2] James 1:27.

[3] Romans 1:29.

[4] Didache 2:2; Exodus 21:22