Clement of Rome

Clement of Rome

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Clement of Rome Study Archive

Most modern critics suppose him to have been the Titus Flavius Clemens, brother of the Emperor Vespasian, and first cousin to the Emperor Domitian


Clement of Rome
30 – 100

Early Church Father, Reputed Brother of Vespasian and Uncle of Titus | Pastor of  the Roman Church from A.D. 67-73 | Credited with teaching Christian Modalism | Not to be confused with Clement of Alexandria or the Pseudo-Clementines

“Most modern critics suppose him to have been the Titus Flavius Clemens, brother of the Emperor Vespasian, and first cousin to the Emperor Domitian, whose niece, Flavia Domitilla, he married. This Clement was Counsul in A.D. 95, but at the close of his year of office was arrested, with his wife, on a charge of “atheism” – a charge which, we are told, was brought against some others who had made converts to Judiasm ; he was condemned to death, and his wife was banished. There is little doubt that by “Judaism” is meant Christianity. (Skeel-White-Whitney, The Epistle of St. Clement of Rome, p. vi)


RELEVANT WORKS

  • Wikipedia:  “Titus Flavius Clemens” | “Pope Clement I”
  • 0070: Clement of Rome,  First Epistle of Clement to the Corinthians – “A formal letter written on behalf of the Roman Christian community urging Christians who had been rebelling against church authority to be submissive and obedient. Tradition attributes it to Clement, allegedly one of the first bishops of Rome.” | Pre-AD70 Epistle?: “Not in every place, brethren, are the daily sacrifices offered, or the peace-offerings, or the sin-offerings and the trespass-offerings, but in Jerusalem only.” (41:2) | “Of a truth, soon and suddenly shall His will be accomplished” (23:5) | Robinson’s Date: Early in the year 70
  • 0150: Pseudepigraphical Author, 2nd Epistle of Clement to the Corinthians “Sermon thought not to be the writing of Clement himself. Advocates sound view of Christ, the resurrection, and holiness unto God. Enter into battle against the ways of this world, work out salvation through strength in Christ.” (“anonymous homily of the mid-second century” – Eusebius)
  • 0185: Clement of Alexandria, The Stomata
  • 1890 PDF: Lightfoot’s Apostolic FathersV1 – Clement of Rome
  • 1881: Poem, Titus and Vespasian “Pope Clement explains Christianity to Vespasian who professes his faith, kisses the cloth, and is healed. He refuses, however, to be christened until he has avenged Christ’s death. Leaving Clement in charge of his country, he and his men depart for Jerusalem.”
  • 2011: Cardinal Brandmüller: Persecuted in very recent times “The First Epistle of Clement to the Corinthians, which speaks of the persecution suffered by Christians “out of envy and jealousy”, was written not long after the death of Nero, and therefore very few years after the martyrdom of Saints Peter and Paul in Rome.”


(Evidence of the Dating of First Clement – Written prior to AD70)
“Not in every place, brethren, are the continual daily sacrifices offered, or the freewill offerings, or the sin offerings or the trespass offerings, but in Jerusalem alone. And even there the offering is not made in every place, but before the sanctuary in the court of the altar; and this too through the high-priest and the aforesaid ministers.” (41:2)

“Of a truth, soon and suddenly shall His will be accomplished” (23:5)

(Fulfillment of Matthew 24:14)
“But not to dwell upon ancient examples, let us come to the most recent spiritual heroes. Let us take the noble examples furnished in our own generation. Through envy and jealousy, the greatest and most righteous pillars have been persecuted and put to death. Let us set before our eyes the illustrious apostles. Peter, through unrighteous envy, endured not one or two, but numerous labours and when he had at length suffered martyrdom, departed to the place of glory due to him. Owing to envy, Paul also obtained the reward of patient endurance, after being seven times thrown into captivity, compelled to flee, and stoned. After preaching both in the east and west, he gained the illustrious reputation due to his faith, having taught righteousness to the whole world, and come to the extreme limit of the west, and suffered martyrdom under the prefects. Thus was he removed from the world, and went into the holy place, having proved himself a striking example of patience.” (5.1–17)

“All glory and enlargement was given unto you, and that was fulfilled which is written My beloved ate and drank and was enlarged and waxed fat and kicked.” (1Clem 3:1)

(On the New Jerusalem)
“The earth, bearing fruit in fulfillment of His will at her proper seasons, putteth forth the food that supplieth abundantly both men and beasts and all living things which are thereupon, making no dissension, neither altering anything which He hath decreed.” (Clem 20:4)


Pseudo-Clementines

Scholars have noted the “synoptic-type” Jewish piety of the sermon,
perhaps surprising around A.D. 140-160 (the epistle’s approximate date).

SECOND CLEMENT

“anonymous homily of the mid-second century” – Eusebius

Scholars have noted the “synoptic-type” Jewish piety of the sermon,
perhaps surprising around A.D. 140-160 (the epistle’s approximate date).

  • 0150: 2nd Epistle of Clement to the Corinthians “Sermon thought not to be the writing of Clement himself. Advocates sound view of Christ, the resurrection, and holiness unto God. Enter into battle against the ways of this world, work out salvation through strength in Christ.”

(On Fulfillment of Isaiah 54:1-5)
CHAP. II.–THE CHURCH, FORMERLY BARREN, IS NOW FRUITFUL.
“Rejoice, thou barren that bearest not; break forth and cry, thou that travailest not; for she that is desolate hath many more children than she that hath an husband.” In that He said, “Rejoice, thou barren that bearest not,” He referred to us, for our church was barren before that children were given to her. But when He said, “Cry out, thou that travailest not,” He means this, that we should sincerely offer up our prayers to God, and should not, like women in travail, show signs of weakness. And in that He said, “For she that is desolate hath many more children than she that hath an husband,” [He means] that our people seemed to be outcast from God, but now, through believing, have become more numerous than those who are reckoned to possess God. And another Scripture saith, “I came not to call the righteous, but sinners.” This means that those who are perishing must be saved. For it is indeed a great and admirable thing to establish not the things which are standing, but those that are falling. Thus also did Christ desire to save the things which were perishing, and has saved many by coming and calling us when hastening to destruction. ” (Chap. II.– The Second Epistle to the Corinthians)

(On the Dual Nature of the Christian)
“For the Lord Himself, being asked by one when His kingdom would come, replied, “When two shall be one, that which is without as that which is within, and the male with the female, neither male nor female.” And “that which is without as” that which is within meaneth this: He calls the soul “that which is within,” and the body “that which is without.” (Chap. XII.– The Second Epistle to the Corinthians)

(On the Last Days)
“the Books and the Apostles teach that the church is not of the present, but from the beginning. For it was spiritual, as was also our Jesus, and was made manifest at the end of the days in order to save us. (Chap. XIV.– The Second Epistle to the Corinthians)


RECOGNITIONS

 “Often considered the first and only ancient Christian novel, the Pseudo-Clementines originated in Syrian Jewish-Christianity in the early third century.” – F. Stanley Jones

BL Add. 12150 is the oldest-dated manuscript, in any language, dated by hand to the period corresponding to 411/412
  • 2014:  Joseph Glen Gebhardt, The Syriac Clementine Recognitions and Homilies: The First Complete Translation of the Text – The Syriac Clementine Recognitions and Homilies is the first ever complete translation into a modern language of this important historical document relating to the origins of Judaism and Christianity. Found within the pages of the world’s oldest-dated manuscript, in any language, The Syriac Clementine Recognitions and Homilies tells the first-century story of a young Roman philosopher, Clement. Leaving his native land, Clement travels to the Middle East to meet the Apostles and records details of the original teachings of Jesus’ earliest followers. Clement also relays the travels of the Apostle Peter in his attempt to stop a false version of Christianity from being spread throughout the Roman Empire by an insidious deceiver. The narrative concludes with an amazing life story retold by the author. This astonishing document, having been suppressed for nearly two millennia, contains revelations about the formative years leading up to the split between Jews and Christians, and has the potential to revolutionize modern understandings of religion and philosophy. The text is written in Syriac, a dialect of the Aramaic language spoken by Jesus and his Apostles. The Clementine Recognitions and Homilies has previously only been available through altered Greek and Latin recensions and has become a topic of great controversy among Biblical scholars for the past five centuries. Now, for the first time, the oldest text-typet is made accessible to the public in a complete English translation.

(On the Pella Flight Tradition)
“Subsequently also an evident proof of this great mystery is supplied in the fact, that every one who, believing in this Prophet who had been foretold by Moses, is baptized in His name, shall be kept unhurt from the destruction of war which impends over the unbelieving nation, and the place itself; but that those who do not believe shall be made exiles from their place and kingdom, that even against their will they may understand and obey the will of God.” (Recognitions 1:39:3)

(On Fulfillment of Isaiah 54:1-5)
CHAP. II.–THE CHURCH, FORMERLY BARREN, IS NOW FRUITFUL.
“Rejoice, thou barren that bearest not; break forth and cry, thou that travailest not; for she that is desolate hath many more children than she that hath an husband.” In that He said, “Rejoice, thou barren that bearest not,” He referred to us, for our church was barren before that children were given to her. But when He said, “Cry out, thou that travailest not,” He means this, that we should sincerely offer up our prayers to God, and should not, like women in travail, show signs of weakness. And in that He said, “For she that is desolate hath many more children than she that hath an husband,” [He means] that our people seemed to be outcast from God, but now, through believing, have become more numerous than those who are reckoned to possess God. And another Scripture saith, “I came not to call the righteous, but sinners.” This means that those who are perishing must be saved. For it is indeed a great and admirable thing to establish not the things which are standing, but those that are falling. Thus also did Christ desire to save the things which were perishing, and has saved many by coming and calling us when hastening to destruction. ” (Chap. II.– The Second Epistle to the Corinthians)

(On the Last Days)
“the Books and the Apostles teach that the church is not of the present, but from the beginning. For it was spiritual, as was also our Jesus, and was made manifest at the end of the days in order to save us. (Chap. XIV.– The Second Epistle to the Corinthians)

CLEMENT OF ALEXANDRIA

(On Christ’s Prophecies)
But our Master did not prophesy after this fashion; but, as I have already said, being a prophet by an inborn and ever-flowing Spirit, and knowing all things at all times, He confidently set forth, plainly as I said before, sufferings, places, appointed times, manners, limits. Accordingly, therefore, prophesying concerning the temple, He said: ‘See ye these buildingsVerily I say to you, There shall not be left here one stone upon another which shall not be taken away; and this generation shall not pass until the destruction begin. For they shall come, and shall sit here, and shall besiege it, and shall slay your children here.’ • And in like manner He spoke in plain words the things that were straightway to happen, which we can now see with our eyes, in order that the accomplishment might be among those to whom the word was spoken. For the Prophet of truth utters the word of proof in order to the faith of His hearers. (Homliy III)

 

Epiphanius of Salamis
“At Rome the first Apostles and bishops were Peter and Paul, then Linus, then Cletus, then Clement, the contemporary of Peter and Paul” (Medicine Chest Against All Heresies 27:6 [A.D. 375]).

Irenaeus of Lyons
“The blessed apostles [Peter and Paul], having founded and built up the church [of Rome], they handed over the office of the episcopate to Linus. Paul makes mention of this Linus in the letter to Timothy [2 Tim. 4:21]. To him succeeded Anacletus, and after him, in the third place from the apostles, Clement was chosen for the episcopate. He had seen the blessed apostles and was acquainted with them. It might be said that he still heard the echoes of the preaching of the apostles and had their traditions before his eyes. And not only he, for there were many still remaining who had been instructed by the apostles. In the time of Clement, no small dissension having arisen among the brethren in Corinth, the Church in Rome sent a very strong letter to the Corinthians, exhorting them to peace and renewing their faith . . . To this Clement, Evaristus succeeded . . . and now, in the twelfth place after the apostles, the lot of the episcopate [of Rome] has fallen to Eleutherus. In this order, and by the teaching of the apostles handed down in the Church, the preaching of the truth has come down to us” (Against Heresies, 3:3:3 [A.D. 189]).

Tertullian
“[T]his is the way in which the apostolic churches transmit their lists: like the church of the Smyrneans, which records that Polycarp was placed there by John, like the church of the Romans, where Clement was ordained by Peter” (Demurrer Against the Heretics 32:2 [A.D. 200]).

Eusebius
“It must not be overlooked that there is a second epistle said to be from Clement’s pen, but I have no reason to suppose that it was well known like the first one, since I am not aware that the early fathers made any use of it. A year or two ago other long and wordy treatises were put forward as Clement’s work. They contain alleged dialogues with Peter and Apion, but there is no mention whatever of them by early writers, nor do they preserve in its purity the stamp of apostolic orthodoxy.”

Although known as 2 Clement, this document is in actuality an anonymous homily of the mid-second century. The author quotes from some document for the sayings of Jesus. Because the author betrays the redactional characteristics of both Matthew and Luke, it has been supposed that this author had access to a harmony.” (III.38)

Udo Schnelle
“In 2 Clement a larger number of logia of Synoptic types are found (cf. 2 Clem 2.4; 3.2; 4.2; 6.1, 2; 8.5; 9.11; 13.4), which are in part introduced with quotation formulae. Alsongside these are found quotations of unknown origin; cf. 2 Clem. 4.5; 5.2-4; 12.2; 13.2. These data and the introductory formula in 2 Clem. 8.5 ([for the Lord says in the Gospel]) suggest that the author of 2 Clement used, in addition to the Old Testament, an apocryphal gospel that has not come down to us. There is a clearly recognizable tendency in 2 Clement to trace the authority of the Lord back to written documents.” (The History and Theology of the New Testament Writings, p. 355)

Robert M. Grant
An early Christian epistle transmitted along with 1 Clement in the biblical Codex Alexandrinus (late 4th century) and the later Jerusalem Codex (1056) which includes the Didache, as well as in the Syriac version. It was not written by the author(s) of 1 Clement and, indeed, it is not a letter but a sermon on self-control, repentance, and judgment. The sermon begins abruptly: “Brothers, we must think about Jesus Christ as about God, as about the judge of living and dead; and we must not think little of our salvation.” The preacher tells his “brothers and sisters” that he is reading them a “petition” or “plea” (Gk enteuxis) to “pay attention to what is written,” i.e. to the scriptures which he frequently cites (along with quotations from “the prophetic word,” otherwise unknown, and something like the apocryphal Gospel of the Egyptians). He himself refers to “the books (i.e., the OT) and the apostles” as authorities (14.2).”  (The Anchor Bible Dictionary, v. 1, p. 1061)

Scholars have noted the “synoptic-type” Jewish piety of the sermon, perhaps surprising around A.D. 140-160 (the epistle’s approximate date). The work appears to rely upon the Gospel of John as well, however, notably in 9:5-6: “If Christ the Lord who saved us was spirit at first but became flesh [John 1:14] and so called us, so shall we receive the reward in the flesh. Let us then love one another [John 13:34] so that we may all come to the kingdom of God.” The kingdom will come when truth and good works are accompanied by ascetic practise (chap. 12). Until then, Christians must preserve the “seal of baptism” (7:6, 8:6) and belong to “the first, spiritual Church, created [like Israel, according to some rabbis] before sun and moon,” for Gen 1:27 refers to the male Christ and the female Church, both spiritual; Christ is also the Spirit (chap. 14). The theology is not altogether clear, and the author soon turns to the state that he has “given no trivial counsel about self-control,” leading into his practical appeal for repentance and going so far as to say that “fasting is better than prayer, but almsgiving is better than both” (16:4).    (The Anchor Bible Dictionary, v. 1, p. 1061)

Professor M. B. Riddle, D.D.
The name “Pseudo-Clementine Literature” (or, more briefly, “Clementina” ) is applied to a series of writings, closely resembling each other, purporting to emanate from the great Roman Father. But, as Dr. Schaff remarks, in this literature he is evidently confounded with “Flavius Clement, kinsman of the Emperor Domitian.” These writings are three in number: (1) the Recognitions, of which only the Latin translation of Rufinus has been preserved; (2) the Homilies, twenty in number, of which a complete collection has been known since 1853; (3) the Epitome, “an uninteresting extract from the Homilies, to which are added extracts from the letter of Clement to James, from the Martyrium of Clement by Simeon Metaphrastes, etc.” Other writings may be classed with these; but they are of the same general character, except that most of them show the influence of a later age, adapting the material more closely to the orthodox doctrine.

The Recognitions and the Homilies appear in the pages which follow. The former are given a prior position, as in the Edinburgh series. It probably cannot be proven that these represent the earlier form of this theological romance; but the Homilies, “in any case, present the more doctrinally developed and historically important form of the other treatises, which are essentially similar.” They are therefore with propriety placed after the Recognitions, which do not seem to have been based upon them, but upon some earlier document.

The critical discussion of the Clementina has been keen, but has not reached its end. It necessarily involves other questions, about which there is still great difference of opinion. A few results seem to be established:-

(1) The entire literature is of Jewish-Christian, or Ebionitic, origin. The position accorded to “James, the Lord’s brother,” in all the writings, is a clear indication of this; so is the silence respecting the Apostle Paul. The doctrinal statements, “though not perfectly homogeneous” (Uhlhorn), are Judaistic, even when mixed with Gnostic speculation of heathen origin. This tendency is, perhaps, not so clearly marked in the Recognitions as in the Homilies; but both partake largely of the same general character. More particularly, the literature has been connected with the Ebionite sect called the Elkesaites; and some regard the Homilies as containing a further development of their system. This is not definitely established, but finds some support in the resemblance between the baptismal forms, as given by Hippolytus in the case of the Elkesaites, and those indicated in the Recognitions and Homilies, especially the latter.

(2) The entire literature belongs to the class of fictitious writing “with a purpose.” The Germans properly term the Homilies a “Tendenz-Romance.” The many “lives of Christ” written in our day to insinuate some other view of our Lord’s person than that given in the canonical Gospels, furnish abundant examples of the class. The Tübingen school, finding here a real specimen of the influence of party feeling upon quasi-historical literature, naturally pressed the Clementina in support of their theory of the origin of the Gospels.

(3) The discussion leaves it quite probable, though not yet certain, that all the works are “independent elaborations-perhaps at first hand, perhaps at second or third-of some older tract not now extant.”9 Some of the opinions held respecting the relations of the two principal works are given by the Edinburgh translator in his Introductory Notice. It is only necessary here to indicate the progress of the modern discussion. Neander, as early as 1818, gave some prominence to the doctrinal view of the Homilies. He was followed by Baur, who found in these writings, as indicated above, support for his theory of the origin of historical Christianity. It is to be noted, however, that the heterogeneous mixture of Ebionism and Gnosticism in the doctrinal views proved perplexing to the leader of the Tübingen school. Schliemann took ground against Baur, collecting much material, and carefully investigating the question. Both authors give the priority to the Homilies. While Baur went too far in one direction, Schliemann, perhaps, failed to recognise fully the basis of truth in the position of the former. The next important step in the discussion was made by Hilgenfeld, whose views are briefly given in the Notice which follows. Hilgenfeld assigned the priority to the Recognitions, though he traced all the literature to an earlier work. Uhlhorn at first attempted to prove that the Recognitions were a revision of the Homilies. Further contributions were made by Lehmann and Lipsius. The former discovered in the Recognitions two distinct parts by different authors (i.-iii., iv.-ix.), tracing all the literature to the Kerygma of Peter. The latter finds the basis of the whole in the Acta Petri, which show a strong anti-Pauline tendency.

Influenced by these investigations, Uhlhorn modified his views. Lechler, while not positive in his convictions, makes the following prudent statement: “An older work lies at the basis both of the Homilies and Recognitions, bearing the title, Kerygmen des Petrus. To this document sometimes the Homilies, sometimes the Recognitions, correspond more faithfully; its historical contents are more correctly seen from the Recognitions, its doctrinal contents from the Homilies.” Other views, some of them quite fanciful, have been presented.

The prevalent opinion necessarily leaves us in ignorance of the authors of this literature. The date of composition, or editing, cannot be definitely fixed. In their present form the several works may be as old as the first half of the third century, and the common basis may be placed in the latter half of the second century.

How far the anti-Pauline tendency is carried, is a matter of dispute. Baur and many others think Simon is meant to represent Paul; but this is difficult to believe, though we must admit the disposition to ignore the Apostle to the Gentiles. As to the literary merit of these productions the reader must judge.

For convenience in comparison of the two works, the following table has been prepared, based on the order of the Recognitions. The correspondences are not exact, and the reader is referred to the footnotes for fuller details. This table gives a general view of the arrangement of the two narratives:” (INTRODUCTORY NOTICE TO PSEUDO-CLEMENTINE LITERATURE)

Skeel-White-Whitney (1912)
“Most modern critics suppose him to have been the Titus Flavius Clemens, brother of the Emperor Vespasian, and first cousin to the Emperor Domitian, whose niece, Flavia Domitilla, he married. This Clement was Counsul in A.D. 95, but at the close of his year of office was arrested, with his wife, on a charge of “atheism” – a charge which, we are told, was brought against some others who had made converts to Judiasm ; he was condemned to death, and his wife was baniched. There is little doubt that by “Judaism” is meant Christianity. (The Epistle of St. Clement of Rome, p. vi)



Date: 06 Nov 2003
Time: 18:47:11

“Have we not one God and one Christ? Is there not one Spirit of grace poured out upon us?”


Date: 02 Jun 2004
Time: 13:59:14

What proof do we have that Peter was ever in Rome? Are we to take the Papacy’s word for it? Peter said in his first letter that he was in Babylon. There is no reason to believe that this was a code word for Rome. Paul never resorted to it and he was locked up in a roman prison. Babylon was a great and financually powerful jewish center at the time and next to Jerusalem and Alexandria it has the greatest number of jews that needed to hear the gospel. However another Simon was in Rome. If anyone was crucified ‘upside down’ he would have been the lilely candidate. AN UPSIDE DOWN CROSS IS A SATANIC SIGN is it not? Wasn’t he a sorceror? What’s more fitting than to have his body buried in the Roman graveyard The Vatican? Clement does not say that Peter was ever even in Rome…does he? Richard rakasan04@peoplepc.com


Date: 11 Dec 2004
Time: 01:11:56

Dallas Seminary recently posted a critique of preterism at: http://www.dts.edu written by Dr. Stanley Toussaint.


Date: 02 Mar 2005
Time: 20:27:56

Clement said: “Almsgiving is better than prayer!”


Date: 14 Dec 2009
Time: 01:39:35

You got it right when you say that Clement was written before the destruction of the Temple. I place the writing of I Clement after the deaths of Peter and Paul (66A.D.) and before the destrution of the temple 70A.D.

I Clement 66-69 A.D.


Date: 30 May 2010
Time: 14:19:20

It seems like there are too many opinions about these writings without any sure grounding in the facts. Everyone since the time of Calvin has declared these writing pseudepigraphical. Calvin’s case was that the devil wrote them, so therefore Clement could not. Wow! It hasn’t gotten much better since then. Why was an Aramaic version of the Clementines been found a century and half ago in the earliest dated manuscript in any language, and yet no one has bothered to translate it? I’ve seen it and, believe me, there are many demonstrations which prove that the Aramaic is the original. The alleged anti-Pauline Tubingen conspiracies only exemplify the radical tendency of people to theorize about these writings without knowing anything about them.


Date: 18 Oct 2011
Time: 18:24:44

i think the “powers that be” did their best to discredit any writings that didn’t fit their Pauline ideas/including trying to sweep Jesus’ brother(s) under the rug…


Date: 02 Jul 2012
Time: 08:09:17

HELP!!!! Im trying to understand.if Christ has all ready come in 70 AD,now what? what is next? i dont know what to think about the time now 7-1-2012.
why does the christian church say that jesus is still comming? some day….but when? Thank You
reply @

stone_robert@comcast.net


Date: 24 Nov 2010
Time: 15:02:59

i saw on the history ch. that they said that st clement wrote that st. paul threw st. james down a stair well near the temple in jerusalem do you know any thing about this

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