They abstain from the Eucharist and from prayer, 1016 because they confess not the Eucharist to be the flesh of our Saviour Jesus Christ, which suffered for our sins, and which the Father, of His goodness, raised up again. Those, therefore, who speak against this gift of God, incur death 1017 in the midst of their disputes. But it were better for them to treat it with respect, 1018 that they also might rise again. It is fitting, therefore, that ye should keep aloof from such persons, and not to speak of 1019 them either in private or in public, but to give heed to the prophets, and above all, to the Gospel, in which the passion [of Christ] has been revealed to us, and the resurrection has been fully proved. 1020 But avoid all divisions, as the beginning of evils.
They are ashamed of the cross; they mock at the passion; they make a jest of the resurrection. They are the offspring of that spirit who is the author of all evil, who led Adam, 1021 by means of his wife, to transgress the commandment, who slew Abel by the hands of Cain, who fought against Job, who was the accuser of Joshua 1022 the son of Josedech, who sought to “sift the faith” 1023 of the apostles, who stirred up the multitude of the Jews against the Lord, who also now “worketh in the children of disobedience; 1024 from whom the Lord Jesus Christ will deliver us, who prayed that the faith of the apostles might not fail, 1025 not because He was not able of Himself to preserve it, but because He rejoiced in the pre-eminence of the Father. It is fitting, therefore, that ye should keep aloof from such persons, and neither in private nor in public to talk with 1026 them; but to give heed to the law, and the prophets, and to those who have preached to you the word of salvation. But flee from all abominable heresies, and those that cause schisms, as the beginning of evils.
Theodoret, in quoting this passage, reads προσφοράς, “offering.”89:1017
Literally, “die disputing.”89:1018
Literally, “to love.” Some think there is a reference to the agapæ, or love-feasts.89:1019
The reading is περί in the one case, and μετά in the other, though the latter meaning seems preferable. Most of the mss. of the longer recension read περί, as in the shorter.89:1020
Literally, “drove Adam out of.”89:1022
Zech. iii. 1.89:1023
Luke xxii. 31.89:1024
Eph. ii. 2.89:1025
Luke xxii. 32.89:1026
The reading is περί in the one case, and μετά in the other, though the latter meaning seems preferable. Most of the mss. of the longer recension read περί, as in the shorter.