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* that Peter was crucified at Rome with his head downward, * and Paul beheaded.' In his ecclesiastical history, speaking of Nero 'as b the first persecutor of the christians,' he says, ' that he put to death the apostles, at which time 4 Paul was beheaded at Rome, and Peter crucified, as his'tory relates. And the account,' he says, 'is confirmed 'by the monuments still seen in the cemeteries of that city, * with their names inscribed upon them.' And what follows. In another chapter of the same work, he says: 'that c 'Linus was the first bishop of Rome after the martyrdom 4 of Paul and Peter.' It is needless to refer to anymore of the many places of this learned bishop of Ceesarea, where he appears to have been fully persuaded that these two apostles accomplished their martyrdom at Rome.
Athanasiusd supposes both Peter and Paul to have suffered martyrdom in that city.
Ephrem the Syrian, about 370, says, that e Peter taught at Rome.
Epiphanius, as may be remembered, says, ' thatf Matthew 'wrote first, and Mark soon after, being a companion of 6 Peter at Rome.' In another place s he speaks of Peter and Paul as the first apostles and bishops of Rome. After whom, he says, were Linus, Cletus, Clement.
Jerom's opinion is well known from his article of St. Peter in his Book of Illustrious Men, where he says, 'thath 1 Peter was crucified at Rome in the fourteenth year of 'Nero's reign ;' and from i his chapter of St. Mark, whom he calls the disciple and interpreter of Peter, and says, ' that 'at the desire of the brethren at Rome, he wrote a short gos'pel, according to what he had heard from Peter.' Not now to refer to any other places.
We lately saw how k Chrysostom says, that Peter having been at Antioch, afterwards went to Rome. In another
Ilfrpog &, 6 dta rov <j>oj3ov ru)V IsfiaiWV KpvTrTOfjLevog, Kcil ITcrvXo^ fv XaoQeiq, Koi ^>uywv, aKsffavreg, eig 'pwjutjv §ei vpag [JiapTvpii<rai, &k avs(3a\ovrO rrjv aTroSrj^iav. Apol. pro fuga sua, p. 331. e See in this work, Vol. iv. ch. cii. num. vi. 13. et opp. syr. Tom. I. p. 553. f See Vol. iv. ch. lxxxiv. num. iv. 3. from Haer. 51. num. vi. g Ev 'Pw/iy y«p y£yova<7i Trpwroi lltrpoQ Kat HavXoQ ol aTro^oXoi /cat f7rt(T•cottoi, eira Atvog, K. X. H«r. 27. num. vi.
h See Vol. iv. ch. cxiv. num. viii. 7. * The same, num. viii. 2.
k See before, p. 237
place he says, that1 after Peter and Paul, Ignatius also suffered martyrdom at Rome. And he thinks it a wise disposal of Providence, that so many should bear the most signal testimony to truth in a place which was then the chief seat of impiety and superstition.
According to Sulpicius Severus, who wrote about the year 401, Paul ra and Peter suffered martyrdom at Rome in Nero's persecution.
Prudentius, about 405, has several times celebrated the martyrdoms of Peter and Paul at Rome. One place was transcribed from him not long n ago.
To him I subjoin P. Orosius ° about 416.
And Theodoret, about 423, well observes, that? though Nero put to death two of the principal christian lawgivers, Peter and Paul, he could not abolish their laws.
I omit Augustine, and many others, who speak to the like purpose. But I would add, for showing how general this tradition is, that Abdias Babylonius, as he is called in his apostolical history, supposes Peter 1 to have been at Rome, and to have suffered martyrdom there.
Nor can any of my readers forbear to recollect the general, and almost unanimous, testimony of ancient writers concerning St. Mark : that he was a disciple of St. Peter, that his gospel is the substance of St. Peter's preaching, and that it was written at Rome.
It is not needful to make many remarks upon this tradition. But it is easy to observe, that it is the general, uncontradicted, disinterested testimony of ancient writers, in the several parts of the world, Greeks, Latins, Syrians. As our Lord's prediction concerning the death of Peter is recorded in one of the four gospels, it is very likely, thatr
1 Ol $e rrjv 'Pw/i?/^ Oiksvr£q, ars 7roX\??f Tote aaifaictQ sa^g cm, TrXeiovoQ eXpijZov (3orjQeiag. Ata Tsto Kcci Ilerpoc Kcii HavXoQj Koi Jjlst' sKeiv&s Ovroq fm Travree iBvQriffav. Ch. hom, in S. Ig. Mart. T. II. p. 599. A.
m Tum Paulus ac Petrus capitis damnati. Quorum uni cervix gladio desecta, Petrus in crucem sublatus est. Sul. Sev. Hist. Sacra. 1.2. cap. 29. al. 41.
"See before, p. 242.
0 Nam primus Romae christianos suppliciis et mortibus adfecit, ac per omnes provincias pari persecutione excruciari imperavit. Ipsumque nomen extirpare conatus, beatissimos Christi apostolos, Petrum cruce, Paulum gladio occiclit. Oros. Hist. 1. 7. cap. 7.
p See before, Vol. v. p. 25. fromTheod. Serm. 9. DeLegibus, Tom. IV. p. 611. D. i Apostol. Hist. dePetro, sect. xvi. &c. Ap. Fabr. Tom. II.
r Non infirmanda esse ca de re antiquitatis testimonia, multa monent. I. Convenientissimum sane fuit sciri locum, ubi Petro mors oblata est, ad illus
trandum Christi de servi sui martyrio oraculum Locus autem in ignora
tione jacet, si in Rornana civitate Petrus cruci suffixus non fuit. Basnag. ann 64. n. x
Christians would observe the accomplishment of it. Which must have been in some place. And about this place there is no difference among christian writers of ancient times. Never any other place was named, beside Rome. Nor 3 did any other city ever glory in the martyrdom of Peter. There were in the second and third centuries disputes between the bishop of Rome and other bishops and churches about the time of keeping Easter, and about the baptism of heretics. Yet1 none denied the bishop of Rome to have what they called the chair of Peter.
It is not for our honour, nor our interest, either as christians, or protestants, to deny the truth of events, ascertained by early and well attested tradition. If any make an ill use of such facts, we are not accountable for it. We ll are not, from a dread of such abuses, to overthrow the credit of all history: the consequence of which would be fatal.
Fables and fictions have been mixed with the accounts of Peter's being at Rome. But they are not in the most early writers. They have been added since. And it is well known that fictions have been joined with histories of the most certain and important facts.
The two traditions, concerning Peter's being at Rome and Paul's preaching in Spain, ought not to be compared together. They are not at all alike. The latter is not attested by so many, nor so early writers, as the other: and is, probably, a mere conjecture, without any foundation, but the words of Rom. xv. 28, which are no proof at all.
8 Gloriae decorique maximo ecclesiis fuit, quod et doctrina et sanguine apostolorum conderentur. Hinc exclamabat olim Tertullianus: 'Felix 'ecclesia, cui totam doctrinam apostoli cum sanguine suo profuderimt.' Qiri fit ergo, ut nulla, praeter Roraanam, ecclesia in morte Petri exultarit et triumphant? Id. ib. * Cum gravissimos in adversarios
inciderint olim episcopi Romani, Cyprianos, Firmilianos, aliosque bene multos, nonne eorum aliquis eam perstrinxisset; et gloriationem, qua Romana se efferebat ecclesia, utpote quae nunquam prasentia Petri, sanguineque floruerit, etsi ad ravim usque utroque omamento superbiret? Id. ib.
u Neque ulla unquam traditio fuit, quae majore testium numero cingatur; ut de Petri in urbem adventu dubitari non possit quin omniahistoriaefundamenta convellantur. Basn.ann. 64. n. ix.
Tantushac in re omnium consensus fuit, ut sane miraculo debuerit esse, quosdam nostris seculis ortos, factum adeo manifestum negare prasumsisse. Barrat. de Success. Ep. Rom. cap. i. num. i.
Verum hi omnium veterum patrum testimonio refelluntur. Quae (ma
lum !) impudentia est, id quidem quod nemo veterum dixit, temere affirmare, Petrum scilicet sedem fixisse Babylone; id vero quod veteres omnes ecclesiastic! scriptores disertissime prodiderunt, adventum videlicet Petri apostoli in urbem Romam, pertinaciter negare! Atqui nihil in tota historia ecclesiastica illustrius, nihil certius, atque testatius, quam adventus Petri apostoli in urbem Romam. Vales. Annot. ad Euseb. 1. 2. c. 15.
This argument may be censured by some as prolix, and even needless. But as some of our own times, as well as formerly, have denied or disputed this point, I have thought it expedient to let my readers see the evidences of what appears to myself, as well as to many other protestants, very certain: that St. Peter was at Rome, and suffered martyrdom there.
THE TWO EPISTLES OF ST. PETER.
I. Their genuineness shown from testimony and internal characters. II. The people to whom they were sent. III. The place where. IV. The time when they were written. V. Remarks upon 1 Pet. v. 13.
HAVING written the history of the apostle Peter, I now proceed to his epistles. Concerning which three or four things are to be considered by us: their genuineness, the persons to whom they were sent, the place where, and the time when they were written.
I. The first epistle was all along received by catholic christians as authentic and genuine. This we learn from a Eusebius. Who likewise says: 'Ofb the controverted
*books of the New Testament, but yet well known, and 'approved by many, are, that called the epistle of James,
*and that of Jude, and the second of Peter, and the second 'and third of John.' And in another place: * Onec epistle of Peter, called the first, is universally received. This the presbyters of ancient times have quoted in their writings, as undoubtedly genuine. But that called his second, we have been informed, [by tradition,] has not been received as a part of the New Testament. Nevertheless, 'appearing to many to be useful, it has been carefully
*studied with the other scriptures.' By which, I think, we may be assured, that a great regard was shown to this epistle by many christians in the time of our learned Ecclesiastical Historian.
a See Vol. iv. p. 96—99, 123. b P. 97. c P. 98.
Jerom says: * Peterd wrote two epistles,called catholic: 'the second of which is denied by many to be his, because 'of the difference of the style from the former.'
And Origen before them, in his Commentaries upon the gospel of St. Matthew, as cited bye Eusebius, says: 'Peter/ on whom the church is built, has left one epistle, • [universally] acknowledged. Let it be granted, that he 'also wrote a second. For it is doubted of.'
What those learned writers of the third and fourth centuries say of these two epistles, we have found agreeable to the testimony of more ancient writers, whom we have consulted. For the first epistle seems to be referred to by s Clement of Rome. It is plainly referred to by h Polycarp several times. It is also referred to by the * martyrs at Lyons. It was received by k Theophilus, bishop of Antioch. It was quoted1 by Papias. It is quoted in the remaining writings of ra Irenseus, n Clement of Alexandria, and 0 Tertullian. Consequently, it was all along received. But we do not perceive the second epistle to be quoted by p Papias, nor i by Irenaeus, nor r Tertullian, nor s Cyprian.
However, both these epistles were generally received in the fourth and following centuries, by all christians, except the Syrians. For they were received by Athanasius, Cyril of Jerusalem, the council of Laodicea, Epiphanius, Jerom, Rufin, Augustine, and others. As may be seen in the alphabetical table, in St. Peter, at the end of the eleventh volume, to which the reader is referred.
Such are the testimonies of ancient writers concerning these two epistles. If we consult the epistles themselves, and endeavour to form a judgment by mternal evidence: I suppose it will appear very probable that both are of the same author. And it may seem somewhat strange, that any of the ancients hesitated about it, who had the two epistles before them. For with regard to some of the most ancient writers, it may be supposed that the second epistle had not been seen by them, it not having come to their hands together with the first.
The first epistle being allowed to be St. Peter's, we can in favour of the other also after this manner. It