Early Church Fathers
1 Androgathius in philosophy, Libanius in rhetoric.
2 An expression frequently employed by St. Chrysostom in the sense of a life of religious contemplation and study.
3 For an account of the oppressive way in which the public taxes were collected, see Gibbon's History (Milman's edition), vol iii. 78.
4 The iron furnace was a Hebrew proverbial expression signifying a "furnace hot enough to melt iron," and so a condition of peculiar trial. See Deut. iv. 20, and Jer. xi. 4.
5 This must be regarded as a kind of rhetorical expression, as we learn from Chrysostom's "Letter to a young widow" that his mother was not much past 40 at this time.
6 e0piskoph=j is the reading of most Mss but four have i/erwsun/hj, "the priesthood," which Bengel adopts, thinking that neither Basil nor Chrysostom could have been elected for the higher order at so early an age, but see below, p.4, note 1.
7 Forcible ordinations were not uncommon in the Church at this time. St. Augustin was dragged weeping by the people before the Bishop, and his ordination demanded. St. Martin of Tours was torn from his cell, and conveyed to ordination under a guard. Possid Vita Aug. 4 Sulp. Severus, Vit. St. Martin, i. 224. The affectation of reluctance to he consecrated became a fashion in the Coptic Church. The patriarch elect of Alexandria is still brought to Cairo loaded with chains, as if to prevent his escape. Stanley, Eastern Church, vii. p.226.
8 Chrysostom was about 28 at this time. The Council of Neo C'sarea (about 320) fixed 30 as the age at which men were eligible for the priesthood, and the same age at least must have been required for a bishop, yet Remigius was consecrated to the See of Reims at the age of 22, A.D. 457; and there are niany other instances of bishops, under the prescribed age.
9 A metaphorical expression to denote a perilous position, as those who walked on the edge of the walls would be exposed to the missiles of the enemy.3.
10 Proverbs xviii. 19. LXX. version.
11 I Sam. xix. 12-18.
12 I Sam. xx. 11.
13 Literally, "sons of physicians." Compare the expression "sons of the prophets" in the Old Testament.
14 Clement of Alexandria (Stromata vii.) illustrates the same doctrine of allowable deceit for a useful purpose by a similar reference to the practice of physicians.
15 Acts xxi. 26.