The Trinity Delusion An examination of the doctrine of the Trinity

Polycarp

Letter to the Phillipians
(ca. 110-140 A.D.)


Although Polycarp is a celebrated early Christian, very little is known about him. Irenaeus tells us that Polycarp was a disciple of John and the Bishop of Smyrna. He was also a correspondent of Ignatius. Polycarp is also known for his famous statment to Marcion in Rome, "I recognize you as the firstborn of Satan." He was martyred about 155 A.D. It is difficult to date Polycarp's letter to the Philippians. Some scholars think this letter is really two letters merged into one, the first written about 115 A.D. with Ignatius' letters enclosed, and the other written about two or three decades later to warn the church against Marcion. The Martyrdom of Polycarp is attributed to the church of Smyrna.

To the Philippians

Polycarp and the elders with him. To the Church of God sojourning in Philippi. Mercy and peace from God Almighty and Jesus Christ our Saviour be multiplied to you.

Now may God and the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the eternal priest himself, Jesus Christ, the Son of God, build you up in faith and truth... to all under heaven who shall believe in our Lord Jesus Christ and in his Father who raised him from the dead. (12).

The Martyrdom of Polycarp (The Church of Smyrna to the Philomelians )

They did not nail him then, but simply bound him. And he, placing his hands behind him, and being bound like a distinguished ram out of a great flock for sacrifice, and prepared to be an acceptable burnt-offering unto God, looked up to heaven, and said, "O Lord God Almighty, the Father of Your beloved and blessed Son Jesus Christ, by whom we have received the knowledge of You, the God of angels and powers, and of every creature, and of the whole race of the righteous who live before You, I give You thanks that You have counted me, worthy of this day and this hour, that I should have a part in the number of Your martyrs, in the cup of Your Christ. (14).

For, having through patience overcome the unjust governor, and thus acquired the crown of immortality, he now, with the apostles and all the righteous, rejoicingly glorifies God and Almighty Father, and blesses our Lord Jesus Christ, the Saviour of our souls, the governor of our bodies, and the shepherd of the catholic Church throughout the world. (19).

To Him who is able to bring us all by His grace and goodness into His everlasting kingdom, through His only-begotten Son Jesus Christ, be glory, honour, might, and majesty for ever. (20).

Last Update: January 23, 2011
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