Theophilus of Antioch
[Translated by the Rev. Marcus Dods, A.M.]
Introductory Note to Theophilus of Antioch
Little is known of the personal history of Theophilus of Antioch. We gather from the following treatise that he was born a pagan (i. 14), and owed his conversion to Christianity to the careful study of the Holy Scriptures. Eusebius (Hist. Eccl., iv. 20) declares that he was the sixth bishop of Antioch in Syria from the apostles, the names of his supposed predecessors being Eros, Cornelius, Hero, Ignatius, and Euodius. We also learn from the same writer, that Theophilus succeeded to the bishopric of Antioch in the eighth year of the reign of Marcus Aurelius, that is, in a.d. 168. He is related to have died either in a.d. 181, or in a.d. 188; some assigning him an episcopate of thirteen, and others of twenty-one, years.
Theophilus is said by Eusebius, Jerome, and others, to have written several works against the heresies which prevailed in his day. He himself refers in the following treatise (ii. 30) to another of his compositions. Commentaries on the Gospels, arranged in the form of a harmony, and on the Book of Proverbs, are also ascribed to him by Jerome; but the sole remaining specimen of his writings consists of the three books that follow, addressed to his friend Autolycus. The occasion which called these forth is somewhat doubtful. It has been thought that they were written in refutation of a work which Autolycus had published against Christianity; but the more probable opinion is, that they were drawn forth by disparaging remarks made in conversation. The language of the writer (ii. 1) leads to this conclusion.
In handling his subject, Theophilus goes over much the same ground as Justin Martyr and the rest of the early apologists. He is somewhat fond of fanciful interpretations of Scripture; but he evidently had a profound acquaintance with the inspired writings, and he powerfully exhibits their immense superiority in every respect over the heathen poetry and philosophy. The whole treatise was well fitted to lead on an intelligent pagan to the cordial acceptance of Christianity.
[I venture to assign to Theophilus a conjectural date of birth, circiter a.d. 115.  ]
 Book iv. cap. 24. Thus he with others met the "grievous wolves" foretold by St. Paul "night and day with tears," three years continually (Acts xx. 29-31).
 Acts xiii. 1.
 Renan, St. Paul, cap. 1., Farrar, Life of St. Paul, cap. xvi.
 [Our chronological arrangement must yield in minute accuracy to other considerations; and we may borrow an excuse from our author, who notes the difficulty of microscopic akribeia in his own chronological labours (book iii. cap. 29). It was impossible to crowd Tatian and Theophilus into vol. i. of this series, without dividing Irenaeus, and putting part of his works in vol. ii. But, in the case of contemporaries, this dislocation is trifling, and creates no confusion.]
The Pastor of Hermas - Introductions
The Pastor of Hermas: Book 1
The Pastor of Hermas: Book 2
The Pastor of Hermas: Book 3
Tatian the Assyrian's Address to the Greeks
Fragments - Tatian the Assyrian
Theophilus of Antioch - Introduction
Theophilus of Antioch to Autolycus: Book 1
Theophilus of Antioch to Autolycus: Book 2
Theophilus of Antioch to Autolycus: Book 3
A Plea for Christians by Athenagoras the Athenian: Philosopher and Christian
The Treatise of Athenagoras the Athenian, Philosopher and Christian, on the Resurrection of the Dead
Clement of Alexandria - Introductory Note
Exhortation to the Heathen
The Instructor (Paedagogus) - Book 1
The Instructor (Paedagogus) - Book 2
The Instructor (Paedagogus) - Book 3
Elucidations - Clement of Alexandria
The Stromata, or Miscellanies - Book 1
Elucidations - Purpose of the Stromata
The Stromata, or Miscellanies - Book 2
Elucidations - The Stromata, Book 2
The Stromata, or Miscellanies - Book 3
The Stromata, or Miscellanies - Book 4
Elucidations - The Stromata, Book 4
The Stromata, or Miscellanies - Book 5
Elucidations - The Stromata, Book 5
The Stromata, or Miscellanies - Book 6
Elucidations - The Stromata, Book 6
The Stromata, or Miscellanies - Book 7
Elucidations - The Stromata, Book 7
The Stromata, or Miscellanies - Book 8
Elucidations - The Stromata, Book 8
Fragments of Clemens Alexandrinus
Clemens Alexandrinus on the Salvation of the Rich Man
Elucidations - Clemens Alexandrinus on the Salvation of the Rich Man
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