Hundredfold Martyrs - Ps -Cyprian

Steven Avery

The Hundredfold Reward for Martyrs and Ascetics: De centesima, sexagesimal tricesima [66] speaks of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit as "three witnesses" and was passed down with the Cyprian corpus. This was only first published in 1914 and thus does not show up in the historical debate. UBS-4 includes this in the apparatus as (Ps-Cyprian)

66 - Philip Sellew, Critica Et Philologica, 2001, p. 94

67 - The use of parentheses is described as "these witnesses attest the readings in question, but that they also exhibit certain negligible variations which do not need to be described in detail". Kurt Aland, The Text of the New Testament, 1995, p. 243.

The Pseudo-Cyprianic Sermo de Centesima, published by R. Reitzenstein, ZNW 15, (194) 60-90, is attributed by H. Koch, ZNW 31 (1932) 248, to fourth-century Africa and (possibly) to a follower of Priscillian, drawing upon Cyprian's works. It speaks of Father, Son , and Holy Spirit as "three witnesses" without any reference to 1 John (PL Supp 1, 65; Reitzenstein, 87)
(Note 27, p. 782 in 1982 edition it is Note 29, p. 784) - Raymond Bro

Dated Late 2nd century:
● Reitzenstein (1914) Eine frühchristliche Schrift ZNTW
● Daniélou (1977) Origins of Latin Christianity
● Rordorf and Tuilier (1978) La Doctrine des Douze Apôtres;

● For the Law of the Lord is hard and bitter, but it makes bitterness, in order that it might reveal sweetness. For also by John this is demonstrated, when the spirit hands over the book to the angel who broke the seals, saying: "Take the book and eat it up. And it shall make thy belly bitter, but in thy mouth it shall be sweet as honey." This means: by the mouth of three witnesses it will be proved, that is: by the mouth of the Father and Son and Holy Spirit it will be confessed, because it is apparent that honey [Latin: mel] is written in three letters. For certainly, we also read honey [Latin: mel], constituted of three letters.

● Certainly, whoever might be so inclined to accomplish the work of those six angels, he shall enjoy so much blessedness [fruitfulness] as the illustrious three, the Father and Son and Holy Spirit, which therefore you long for in the kingdom of heaven.[1] ...Therefore you who have learnt to receive God through virtuousness, observe his promise too, which said : Anyone not reborn from water and holy spirit, will not enter into the kingdom of heaven. Therefore you who will long to arrive in the kingdom of heaven, do not cast out that spirit of renewal by your lustful living.[2] ...For He Himself [Christ] is a step in the ascent into heaven, for He Himself is the gate, Himself the entry into live, by whom in your redemption from the contagion of the world you have been spiritually bound by the Three Witnesses. This Trinity, therefore, increases by the Ten Words [i.e.,
multiplied by the 10 Commandments] so that the thirty-fold reward is completed. [i.e., "the sum" that is 30 (3 multiplied by 10)].[3]

Raymond Brown's Appendix to his commentary of John's Epistles.

1982 p 784.jpg

Melissa Hart Sellew

Philip Sellew
Associate Professor of Classical and Near Eastern Studies
University of Minnesota
(612) 625-2026

Sellew - Page 94-98- 94 and 97 are online.

Critica Et Philoloaica. Nachleben. First Two Centuries, Tertullian to Arnobius,
Egypt Before Nicaea, Athanasius and His Opponents (2001)

Phillip Sellew - Minneapolis

The Hundredfold Reward for Martyrs and Ascetics: Ps.-Cyprian,
De centesima, sexagesima, tricesima .................................... 94

I have recently completed work on a new critical edition and English translation of the Latin work De centesima, sexagesima, tricesima, a homily composed in North Africa some time in the third century and preserved among the works of Cyprian of Carthage. The text was discovered by R. Reitzenstein and published in 1914 1. Though it was reprinted in the Patrologia Latina supplement of the 1950s, the sermon has not previously been translated into any language 2. Despite its considerable interest, not much attention has been devoted to it by patristic scholarship in recent years, apart from a few important articles published by J. Danielou and P. F. Beatrice in the 1970s 3.

1 Richard Reitzenstein, ‘Eine frühchristliche Schrift von den dreierlei Früchten des christlichen Lebens,’ ZNW 15 (1914) 60-90.

2 Patrologia Latina, Supplementum I (Paris, 1958) 53-67.

3 Jean Daniélou, 'Le traité De centesima, sexagesima, tricesima et le Judéo-Christianisme latin avant Tertullien,’ VC 25 (1971) 171-181; idem, A History of Early Christian Doctrine before the Council of Nicaea, Vol. 3, The Origins of Latin Christianity, tr. David Smith and John Austin Baker (Philadelphia, 1977) 63-92;

Pier Franco Beatrice, ‘Martirio ed ascesi nel sermone pseudo-ciprianeo “De centesima, sexagesima, tricesima”,’ in Paradoxos politeia: Studi patristici in onore di Giuseppe Lazzati, ed. Ranicro Cantalamcssa and L.F. Pizzolato (Milan, 1979) 3-24;

idem, 'Il sermone De centesima, sexagesima, tricesima dello Ps. Cipriano e la teologia del martirio,’ Aug 19 (1979) 215-243.

Harvard Theological Review
(1921) Reitzenstein review
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