« הקודםהמשך »
mediately to St. Peter in the see of Rome: he governed for twelve years and some months. The destruction of Jerusalem happened during his pontificate, in the year of Christ seventy. His festival is kept on the fifth of November by the Greeks, and on the twentythird of September by the Latins.
ONESIPHORUS, A GENTILE CONVERT. ONESIPHORUS was a disciple of St. Paul, and is mentioned by him in the first chapter of his second epistle to Timothy. He came to Rome in the year of CHRIST sixty-five, while the apostle was in prison for the faith, and at a time when almost every one had forsaken him. The Greeks place his festival on the twenty-ninth of April and the eighth of December, and rank him in the order of the seventy disciples, and seem to ascribe martyrdom to him. The Roman martyrology on the sixteenth of December says, that he suffered martyrdom on the Hellespont, whither he went to preach the gospel along with Porphyrius.
STEPHANUS, A GENTILE CONVERT. STEPHANUS was one of the principal christians of Corinth, whom St. Paul baptised with all his family, as we find in the first chapter of the epistle to the Corin. thians, propably about the fifty-second year of Christ.
Stephanus devoted himself to the service of the church; and in the year of our Lord fifty-six, he came to St. Paul at Ephesus, and according to Chrysostom, brought him letters which the church of Corinth wrote to him, in order to consult him concerning marriage, continency, and perhaps other subjects, which St. Paul treats of in the said first epistle to the Corinthians.-
This the apostle wrote from Ephesus in the fifty-sixth year; and it was sent by Stephanus, Fortunatus, and Achaicus, to the Corinthian church.
PHEBE, A DEACONNESS. PHEBE, for whom St. Paul had a particular esteem was a deaconness of the port of Corinth called Cenchrea: and Theodoret thinks, that the apostle lodged at the house of this holy woman for some time, while he continued in or near Corinth. In the sixteenth chapter of Romans, Paul says, I commend unto you Phebe our sister, which is a servant of the church which is at Cenchrea: that ye receive her in the Lord, as becometh saints ? and that ye assist her in whatsoever business she hath need of you : for she hath been a succourer of many, and of myself also, Some moderns have advanced a notion that Phebe was wife to St. Paul; but none of the ancients have said any thing like it. It is thought that, in quality of deaconness, she was employed by the church in some ministrations suitable to her sex and condition ; such as visiting and instructing the Christian women attending them in their sicknesses and distributing alms to them. Phebe's festival is fixed by the martyrologists on the third of September.
SOSIPATER, A GENTILE CONVERT. WE think, that it may be confidently asserted, that this Sosipater, who was at Rome in the fifty-eighth year of CHRIST, when St. Paul wrote his epistle to the Romans of Berea: since he accompanied Paul, in the same year fifty-eight, in his journey to Jerusalém; and who probably went with him from Corinth, whence the cpistle to the Romans was written, to go by the way of Maccdonia to Jerusalem; as may be seen in the twentieth chapter of the acts of the apostles.
The Latins celebrate his feast on the twenty-fifth of June, and call him a disciple of St. Paul. The Greeks honour him upon the twenty-eighth or twenty-ninth of April.
DEMAS, A GENTILE PROFESSOR. THE
apostle Paul, in the fourth chapter of the Colosians, mentions Demas as a native of Thessalonica. At first he was one of the most zealous disciples which this apostle had, and was very serviceable to him at Rome during his imprisonment there : but some years after, about the year of Christ sixty-five, he foorsook St. Paul, in order to follow a more secular life, and withdrew to Thessalonica, the place of his birth.
Epiphanius informs us, that he renounced the faith, and with Cerinthius, Ebion and others, held Jesus CHRIST to be a mere man: but others affirm that he recovered after his fall and suffered martyrdom for the truth.
ARISTARCHUS, A GENTILE CONVERT, ARISTARCHUS was one of St. Paul's disciples, who has mentioned him in his epistles to the Colossians and Philemon; he is also often mentioned in the acts of the apostles. He was a Macedonian, and a native of Thessalonica: he accompanied Paul to Ephesus, and continued with him during the two years of his abode there, partaking with him in all the dangers and labours of the apostleship. He was very near being killed in. a tumult raised by the Ephesian goldsmiths.
The Greeks say he was bishop of Apamea, in Syria, and was beheaded with St. Paul at Rome, in the reign of Nero: continuing to the very last inviolably attached to that apostle, with whom he had laboured in the work of the ministry,
CLEMENT, A GENTILE CONVERT. THIS disciple is mentioned by St. Paul in his epistle to the Philippians, where the apostle says, that Clement's name is written in the book of life. The generality of the fathers, and other interpreters, make no question but that this is the same Clement who succeeded St. Peter, after Linus and Cletus, in the government of the church of Rome; and this seems to be intimated, when in the office for St. Clement's day, that church appoints this part of the epistle to the Philippians to be read. On the contrary, Grotius is of opinion, that the Clement Paulspeaks of was no more than a priest of the church of Philippi in Macedonia. We have no certain accounts of what happened to St. Clement during the persecution under Domitian ; but we are very well assured that he lived to the third year of Trajan, which is the hundreth of Jesus CHRIST. His festival is set down by Bede, and all the Latin martyrologists, on the twenty-third of November. The Greeks honour him on the twentyfourth or twenty-fifth of the same month. He is ranked amongst the martyrs.
ANANIAS, A JEWISH CONVERT. ANANIAS was a disciple of the blessed Jesus: he dwelt at Damascus, when he was directed in a vision from the Lord, to go and find Paul, who had been lately converted and was come to that city.
We know no other circumstances of Ananias's life besides this now related. The modern Greeks maintain, that he was one of the seventy disciples, and made bishop of Damascus; and that having obtained the crown of martyrdom, he was buried in the same city: and here a fine church is to be seen in the place where he was interred.
NICHOLAS, A DISCIPLE AND DEACON. NICHOLAS was a proselyte at Antioch, and there converted from the Pagan to the Jewish religion; but the time of his birth is uncertain. Afterwards he embraced Christianity, and was one of the most zealous and most holy men amongst the first Christians : so that he was chosen for one of the seven first deacons of the church of Jerusalem. But he afterwards plunged him. self into irregularities, and gave beginnings to the sect of the Nicolaitans, to that of the Gnostics, and to se. veral others; who following the bent of their passions, invented a thousand different sorts of crimes and excesses.
NICODEMUS, AN HEBREW CONVERT. This remarkable disciple of our blessed Saviour was a Jew by nation, and by sect a Pharisee. The gospel calls him a ruler of the Jews; and Christ gives him the name of a master of Israel. When cur Saviour began to manifest himself by his miracles at Jerusalem, at the first passover which he celebrated there after his baptism, Nicodemus made no doubt but that he was the Messiah, and came to him by night, that he might learn of him the way to salvation.
Nicodemus, after this conversation, became a disciple of Jesus CHRIST; and there is no doubt but he came to hear him, as often as our Saviour came to Je. rusalem. It happened on a time, that the priests and Pharisees had sent officers to seize Jesus, who returned to them, and made this report, that never man spoke as he clid. Afterwards, Nicodemus declared himself openly a disciple of JESUS CHRIST, when he came with Joseph of Arimathca to pay the last duties to the body