Ante-Nicene Fathers/Volume VIII/Pseudo-Clementine Literature/The Clementine Homilies/Homily XVI/Chapter 4
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, translated by Thomas Smith
Chapter IV.—The Prejudices of Faustus Rather on the Side of Simon Than on that of Peter.
Our father answered: “Do not compel me to agree with you without any exercise of my judgment in order that I may seem to be a truth-loving judge; but if you wish me to tell you the truth, my prepossessions are rather the side of your opinions.” And Simon said: “How is this the case, when you do not know what my opinions are?” And our father said: “It is easy to know this, and I will tell you how. You promised that you would convict Peter of error in maintaining the unity of God; but if one undertakes to convict of error him who maintains the unity of God. it is perfectly plain that he, as being in the right, does not hold the same opinion. For if he holds the same opinion as the man who is thoroughly in error, then he himself is in error; but if he gives his proofs holding opposite opinions, then he is in the right. Not well then do you assert that he who maintains the unity of God is wrong, unless you believe that there are many gods. Now I maintain that there are many gods. Holding, therefore, the same opinion as you before the discussion, I am prepossessed rather in your favour. For this reason you ought to have no anxiety in regard to me, but Peter ought, for I still hold opinions contrary to his. And so after your discussion I hope that, as a truth-loving judge, who has stripped himself of his prepossessions, I shall agree to that doctrine which gains the victor.” When my father said this, a murmur of applause burst insensibly from the multitudes because my father had thus spoken.
- The words translated “error,” ψεῦσμα, and “to be in the right,” ἀληθεύειν, are, properly rendered, “falsehood,” and “to speak the truth.”
- The mss. read: “not otherwise.” The reading of the text is found in an Epitome.