Constantine’s Influence on the Church

Introduction

Throughout the entire Bible, there is no physical universal church building system found anywhere.  In every mention, the Church is local.  So, where did this idea of a physical universal church system begin?   The answer is Constantine.

The Desire for a Universal System

From the beginning, Emperors did not approve of the schisms and heresies and wanted to find a way to unite the people under one authority. “When such conditions prevailed it is easy to understand that many of the emperors yielded to the delusion that they could unite all their subjects in the adoration of the one sun god who combined in himself the Father-God of the Christians and the much-worshipped Mithras; thus the empire could be founded anew on unity of religion. Even Constantine, as will be shown farther on, for a time cherished this mistaken belief.” (1)

“The world was fully ripe for monotheism or its modified form, henotheism, but this monotheism offered itself in varied guises, under the forms of various Oriental religions: in the worship of the sun, in the veneration of Mithras, in Judaism, and in Christianity. Whoever wished to avoid making a violent break with the past and his surroundings sought out some Oriental form of worship which did not demand from him too severe a sacrifice; in such cases Christianity naturally came last. Probably many of the more noble-minded recognized the truth contained in Judaism and Christianity, but believed that they could appropriate it without being obliged on that account to renounce the beauty of other worships. Such a man was the Emperor Alexander Severus; another thus minded was Aurelian, whose opinions were confirmed by Christians like Paul of Samosata. Not only Gnostics and other heretics, but Christians who considered themselves faithful, held in a measure to the worship of the sun. Leo the Great in his day says that it was the custom of many Christians to stand on the steps of the church of St. Peter and pay homage to the sun by obeisance and prayers.” (2)

The Universal Church is Formed

In the year 324, in regards to the Arian Schism, Constantine sent a letter to both Alexander and Arius, telling them to settle their differences peaceably, or at least keep their arguments private. This letter shows his view of the controversy and the political purpose of his religious policy:

“I had proposed to lead back to a single form the ideas which all people   conceive of the Deity; for I feel strongly that if I could induce men to unite on that subject, the conduct of public affairs would be considerably eased. But alas! I hear that there are more disputes among you than recently in Africa. The cause seems to be quite trifling, and unworthy of such fierce contests. You, Alexander, wished to know what your priests were thinking on a point of view, even on a portion only of a question in itself entirely devoid of importance; and you, Arius, if you had such thoughts, should have kept silence. There was no need to make these questions public since they are problems that idleness alone raises, and whose only use is to sharpen men’s wits. These are silly actions worthy of inexperienced children, and not of priests or reasonable men.” (3)

In 325, Constantine summoned the first empire-wide council of bishops, known as the Council of Nicea. He wanted them to settle the controversy dividing them. This was the first meeting of the universal church.

Jesus is the Rock of the true Church

After Constantine, the universal church became known as the Roman Catholic Church. Most people are unaware that the word ‘Catholic’ also means ‘universal.’(4)  Roman Catholic doctrine teaches that, “Because of the faith he confessed, Peter will remain the unshakable rock of the Church. His mission will be to keep this faith from every lapse and to strengthen his brothers in it.” (5)

Their claim is based upon a reading of Matthew 16:18, “And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.” The Catholics refer to the Aramaic language to support this belief.   However, the New Testament was written in Greek and not Aramaic.

The Greek word for Peter is ‘petros’, which means ‘a pebble’ or ‘a small stone’ and the Greek word that Jesus used for ‘rock’ in Matthew 16:18 is ‘petra’, meaning a ‘massive rock’ or ‘bedrock’.(6)   In addition to the Greek translation, several passages of Scripture also refute their claim that Peter is the rock of the Church (I Corinthians 3:11, Psalms 18:2, Psalms 118:8, Psalms 18:31). In Matthew 16:23, we even see Jesus rebuking Peter, “But he turned, and said unto Peter, Get thee behind me, Satan: thou art an offence unto me: for thou savourest not the things that be of God, but those that be of men.”

Greek dictionaries and lexicons give us further insight into the proper translation of the two Greek words under discussion. Liddell and Scott’s Greek-English Lexicon defines Petros as, “πέτρος, a stone, distinguished from πέτρα (petra). And Petra as, “πέτρα , Ion. and Ep. πέτρη, , a rock, a ledge or shelf of rock, Od. Also, “a rock, i.e. a rocky peak or ridge.   Properly, πέτρα is a fixed rock, πέτρος a stone.” (7) Vine’s Expository dictionary of Old and New Testament words defines Petra, “ πέτρα , denotes a mass of rock, as distinct from petros, a detached stone or boulder, or a stone that might be thrown or easily moved.” (8)

So, Scripture and the original Greek translation confirm that Jesus is the ‘Rock’ foundation of the true Church and not Peter, a fallible man. With Jesus as the foundation, the Church is unshakable. This could not be so with sinful man as the foundation of the true Church. By teaching that Peter is the ‘Rock’ of their church, the Roman Catholics deny Jesus Christ as their foundation.

The Life of Constantine

Constantine Flavius Valerius was born in Naissus in Serbia about the year 272 A.D. Constantine was an illegitimate son of Constantius Chlorus, who later became the Emperor of Rome, and his mother was named Flavia Julia Helena.   “Following the example of his father and earlier 3rd-century emperors, Constantine in his early life was a solar henotheist, believing that the Roman sun god, Sol, was the visible manifestation of an invisible ‘Highest God’ (summus deus), who was the principle behind the universe. This god was thought to be the companion of the Roman emperor.” (9)

In 312, the night before the Battle of Milvian Bridge, Eusibius writes concerning the conversion of Constantine, “Reflecting on this, and well weighing the fact that they who had trusted in many gods had also fallen by manifold forms of death, without leaving behind them either family or offspring, stock, name, or memorial among men: while the God of his father had given to him, on the other hand, manifestations of his power and very many tokens: and considering farther that those who had already taken arms against the tyrant, and had marched to the battle-field under the protection of a multitude of gods, had met with a dishonorable end (for one of them had shamefully retreated from the contest without a blow, and the other, being slain in the midst of his own troops, became, as it were, the mere sport of death; reviewing, I say, all these considerations, he judged it to be folly indeed to join in the idle worship of those who were no gods, and, after such convincing evidence, to err from the truth; and therefore felt it incumbent on him to honor his father’s God alone.” (10)

After Constantine decided to follow the Roman sun god of his father, Eucebius continues his writing describing Constantine’s vision, “He said that about noon, when the day was already beginning to decline, he saw with his own eyes the trophy of a cross of light in the heavens, above the sun, and bearing the inscription, CONQUER BY THIS. At this sight he himself was struck with amazement, and his whole army also, which followed him on this expedition, and witnessed the miracle.” (11) This picture strikes comparison to Revelation 6:2, “And I saw, and behold a white horse: and he that sat on him had a bow; and a crown was given unto him: and he went forth conquering, and to conquer.” As a result of winning the Battle at Milvian Bridge, Constantine became the sole Emperor of the Roman Empire.

The sign Constantine saw is claimed to be the sign of Christ and is described as a Chi (χ) Rho (ρ), with the letter ‘P’ being intersected by the letter ‘X’ in its center. In the 19th century, Priest P. Huchedé writes, “Antichrist will further make all men, great and small, rich and poor, freemen and bondmen, bear a sign on their right arm or their forehead. (Apoc. 13:16). What this sign shall be time alone will reveal. Yet there are some {Catholic} commentators of the Holt Writ, who, according to a special revelation pretend to say that it shall be formed out of the Greek letters X and P, interlaced which resembles the number of Christ. (Cornelius a Lapide in Epis. 2 to Thes.). No one can either buy or sell without this mark, as specified in the Apocalypse (13:17).” (12)

“Tycho Brahe’s (1546-1601) astrological/astronomical work provides evidence of the ecclesiastical usage of the magic square with which the Roman Catholic Symbol ‘CHI-RHO’ is associated as symbolic usage made of the taxonomy–The bind letters, or monogram, chi-rho (and occasionally appearing with the Greek Alpha and Omega letters) was also known as the labarum of Constantine, being an adaptation of an already existing cavalry standard of the Roman army who, in venerating their signia, swore by them and set the ensigns before all the gods.” (13)  

In 313, Christianity was legalized under Constantine through the Edict of Milan and Constantine called the Council of Nicea in 325 AD. The main topic of the Council of Nicea was the Arian heresy but several other issues were discussed as well, including when to celebrate ‘Easter’. The fact that the term ‘Easter’ is used here and not ‘Passover’ is suspicious. The Encyclopedia Britannica (1934) states, “Easter, Ostara, or Ishtar was the goddess of Spring in the religion of the ancient Angles and Saxons. Every April a festival was celebrated in her honor.” (14) Why was this ‘Christian’ Council called by Constantine discussing the issue of when to honor a pagan goddess? Christians are to remember the Resurrection as instructed by Christ himself in Luke 22:19, “And he took bread, and gave thanks, and brake it, and gave unto them, saying, This is my body which is given for you: this do in remembrance of me.”

Constantine, following the Council of Nicea states:

At the council we also considered the issue of our holiest day, Easter, and it was determined by common consent that everyone, everywhere should celebrate it on one and the same day. For what can be more appropriate, or what more solemn, than that this feast from which we have received the hope of immortality, should be kept by all without variation, using the same order and a clear arrangement? And in the first place, it seemed very unworthy for us to keep this most sacred feast following the custom of the Jews, a people who have soiled their hands in a most terrible outrage, and have thus polluted their souls, and are now deservedly blind. Since we have cast aside their way of calculating the date of the festival, we can ensure that future generations can celebrate this observance at the more accurate time which we have kept from the first day of the passion until the present time. (15)

In approximately 135 A.D., Emperor Hadrian built a Temple to Venus, the pagan goddess. In the year 326, Constantine established this place as the Resurrection site of Jesus Christ. He ordered the pagan temple torn down and a church constructed on the site. Today it is called the Church of the Holy Sepulchre and is claimed to be the place of the burial for Jesus Christ.

Christian historian Eusebius confirms this site was previously desecrated by the Temple of Venus:

This sacred cave, then, certain impious and godless persons had thought to remove entirely from the eyes of men, supposing in their folly that thus they should be able effectually to obscure the truth. Accordingly they brought a quantity of earth from a distance with much labor, and covered the entire spot; then, having raised this to a moderate height, they paved it with stone, concealing the holy cave beneath this massive mound. Then, as though their purpose had been effectually accomplished, they prepare on this foundation a truly dreadful sepulchre of souls, by building a gloomy shrine of lifeless idols to the impure spirit whom they call Venus, and offering detestable oblations therein on profane and accursed altars. For they supposed that their object could not otherwise be fully attained, than by thus burying the sacred cave beneath these foul pollutions. (16)

Regarding the birth date of Jesus Christ, the Scriptures make it clear in Luke 2 that Jesus was born in a warm month because there were ‘shepherds in the fields tending flock by night’. This could not have been done in the month of December because the winters in Palestine were very harsh and the sheep would not have survived. Also, there was a census at the time of Christ’s birth and this would not have been ordered in the winter because the people traveled mainly by foot and donkey.

“The eventual choice of December 25, made perhaps as early as 273, reflects a convergence of Origen’s concern about pagan gods and the church’s identification of God’s son with the celestial sun. December 25 already hosted two other related festivals: Natalis Solis Invicti (the Roman ‘birth of the unconquered sun’), and the birthday of Mithras, the Iranian ‘Sun of Righteousness’ whose worship was popular with Roman soldiers. The winter solstice, another celebration of the sun, fell just a few days earlier. Seeing that pagans were already exalting deities with some parallels to the ‘true’ deity, church leaders decided to commandeer the date and introduce a new festival. Western Christians first celebrated Christmas on December 25 in 336, after Emperor Constantine had declared Christianity the empire’s favored religion.” (17)

Fifteen years prior in 321 AD, Constantine changed the Sabbath from Saturday to Sunday stating, “On the venerable day of the Sun let the magistrates and people residing in cities rest, and let all workshops be closed.” (18)   “It is true that the believers in Mithras also observed Sunday as well as Christmas. Consequently Constantine speaks not of the day of the Lord, but of the everlasting day of the sun.” (2)

Constantine, although declaring to be a Christian, continued to receive Emperor Worship and even paid 20 silver coins for their conversion to any soldier who was willing to become a Christian. Constantine also had his own coins minted bearing the motto, ‘Soli Invicto Comiti,’ a salute to Sol Invictus (Invincible Sun), the official sun god of the Roman empire. “Could not Sol Deus Invictus, to whom even Constantine dedicated his coins for a long time, or Sol Mithras Deus Invictus, venerated by Diocletian and Galerius, become the supreme god of the empire? Constantine may have pondered over this.”(2)

Emperor Constantine killed his own son and his wife and later was finally Baptized on his deathbed in the year 367 AD by the unbiblical method of sprinkling. “For washing is the channel through which they are initiated into some sacred rites— of some notorious Isis or Mithras. The gods themselves likewise they honour by washings. Moreover, by carrying water around, and sprinkling it, they everywhere expiate country-seats, houses, temples, and whole cities: at all events, at the Apollinarian and Eleusinian games they are baptized; and they presume that the effect of their doing that is their regeneration and the remission of the penalties due to their perjuries. Among the ancients, again, whoever had defiled himself with murder, was wont to go in quest of purifying waters.” (19) The Bible teaches that baptism is to be done by submersion in a body of water.

Mithraism and Catholicism

Mithraism is the worship of Mithra, the sun god. Mithra was born of a mother-rock by a river under a tree. (20) “There were seven degrees of initiation into the Mithraic Mysteries. The consecrated one (Mystes) became in succession crow (Corax), occult (Cryphius), soldier (Miles), lion (Leo), Persian (Perses), solar messenger (Heliodromos), and father (Pater).   Crows, occults and soldiers formed the lower orders, a sort of catechumens; lions and those admitted to the other degrees were participants of the mysteries. The fathers conducted the worship. The chief of the fathers, a sort of pope, who always lived at Rome, was called ‘Pater Patrum’ or ‘Pater Patratus’. The members below the degree of Pater called one another ‘brother,’ and social distinctions were forgotten in Mithraic unity.” (21)

Mithra’s bishops wore a mithra, or miter, as their badge of office. Catholic bishops adopted miters. Mithraists commemorated the sun god’s ascension by eating a mizd, a sun-shaped bun embossed with the sword (cross) of Mithra. The hot cross bun and the mass were likewise adapted to Catholicism. The Roman Catholic mizd/mass wafer continues to retain its sun-shape. All Roman Emperors from Julius Caesar to Gratian had been Pontifex Maximus, high priest of the Roman gods. When Theodosius refused the title as incompatible with his status as a Christian, the ‘Christian’ bishop of Rome picked it up. Magi, priests of Zarathustra, wore robes that featured the sword of Mithra. Identical robes are worn by Catholic priests to this day. (22)

In Mithriasm, “a sacred meal was celebrated of bread and haoma juice for which in the West wine was substituted. This meal was supposed to give the participants super-natural virtue. (20)

A fire was kept perpetually burning in the sanctuary. Three times a day prayer was offered to the sun toward the east, south, or west according to the hour. Sunday was kept holy in honour of Mithra, and the sixteenth of each month was sacred to him as mediator. A Mithraic community was not merely a religious congregation; it was a social and legal body with its decemprimi, magistri, curatores, defensores, and patroni.(20)

Some commentators surmise that the Mithraists worshipped Mithra as the mediator between man and the supreme god of the upper and nether world. Other commentators, inspired by James Frazer’s theories, have additionally labeled Mithraism as a mystery religion with a life-death-rebirth deity, comparable to Isis (Ishtar/Easter), or Persephone/Demeter, the cult of the Eleusinian Mysteries. (23)

In Catholicism, the pope is declared to be the Viarius Fillii Dei (meaning substitute for the Son of God.) (24) Their priest is their mediator between God and man. This is completely refuted by the Word of God (I Timothy 2:5). The centerpiece of the Catholic Mass is the Eucharistic sacrifice, a bloodless re-presentation of Christ’s atonement on the cross. (The Bible opposes this in I Peter 3:18 & Hebrews 9:28.) The Catholic priest, or ‘alter Christus’, supposedly commands the Son of God to come down from Heaven and assume the physical characteristics of the wafer and cup of wine so that He might be consumed by the priest and the ‘faithful’.

The Catechism of the Catholic Church states, “The consecration is brought about by the transubstantiation of the bread and wine in the Eucharist. Under the consecrated species of bread and wine Christ himself, living and glorious, is present in a true, real, and substantial manner: his Body and his Blood, with his soul and his divinity.”(25)

Justin Martyr comments on transubstantiation, “Which the wicked devils have imitated in the mysteries of Mithras, commanding the same thing to be done. For, that bread and a cup of water are placed with certain incantations in the mystic rites of one who is being initiated, you either know or can learn.” (26)

According to the Catholic Encyclopedia, the Catechumen were asked to leave before this ‘communion with the host’ because they had not yet been initiated into the sacred ‘mysteries’, but were undergoing a course of preparation for that purpose. (27) The Catholic Encyclopedia states that, ‘mysteries’ is a term that signifies in general that which is unknowable, or valuable knowledge that is kept secret. In pagan antiquity, the word ‘mystery’ was used to designate certain esoteric doctrines, such as Pythagoreanism, or certain ceremonies that were performed in private or whose meaning was known only to the initiated, e.g., the Eleusinian rites, Phallic worship. (28) Mithra’s birthday on December 25th has been so widely claimed that the Catholic Encyclopedia on ‘Mithraism’ remarks: “The 25 December was observed as his birthday, the natalis invicti, the rebirth of the winter-sun, unconquered by the rigours of the season.” (29) “The virgin mother (of Mithraism) was easily merged with the virgin mother Mary (of Christianity). Petra, the sacred rock of Mithraism, became Peter, the foundation of the Catholic Church.” (30) All of these religious rituals have been well preserved through the Catholic religion.

Conclusion

Christians have communion (translated ‘fellowship’) with Christ and it is to be kept pure.  Proof of this is found in I Corinthians 11:26-28, “Wherefore whosoever shall eat this bread, and drink this cup of the Lord, unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord. But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup.” The Scriptures do not support the teaching that the bread and the drink become the actual body and blood of Christ (Transubstantiation/Eucharist). Christians are only to have communion (‘fellowship’) with other Christians.  Christians are to minister to the lost. According to the early Christians in Acts 5:12-13, “The apostles performed many signs and wonders among the people. And all the believers used to meet together in Solomon’s Colonade. No one else dared join them, even though they were highly regarded by the people.”

The true Church is described by Peter himself in I Peter 2:6-8:

Wherefore also it is contained in the scripture, Behold, I lay in Sion a chief corner stone, elect, precious: and he that believeth on him shall not be confounded. Unto you therefore which believe he is precious: but unto them which be disobedient, the stone which the builders disallowed, the same is made the head of the corner, And a stone of stumbling, and a rock of offence, even to them which stumble at the word, being disobedient: whereunto also they were appointed.” Clarke’s Commentary on the Bible explains, “Behold, I lay in Sion – This intimates that the foundation of the Christian Church should be laid at Jerusalem; and there it was laid, for there Christ suffered, and there the preaching of the Gospel commenced.”(31)

Gill’s Exposition of the Entire Bible regarding I Peter 2:8 commentates, ‘“And a stone of stumbling, and a rock of offence.’   The apostle alludes to Isaiah 8:14 and which is a prophecy of the Messiah.” (32) Isaiah 8:13-14, “The LORD Almighty is the one you are to regard as holy, he is the one you are to fear, he is the one you are to dread. He will be a holy place; for both Israel and Judah he will be a stone that causes people to stumble and a rock that makes them fall.” According to the Word of God, the foundation of the true Church is laid in Zion (Jerusalem), not Rome, and the rock upon which the true Christian Church is built is Jesus Christ the Messiah, not Peter.

Catholicism teaches things contradictory to the Word of God such as infant and sprinkling baptism, transubstantiation, confession to a priest other than our High Priest, Jesus Christ, and many others. The true Church is not set up in a hierarchical system to rule over others.   It is set up to serve others.   Jesus came to serve and we are to follow His example daily. Acts 17:11, “These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.”

Constantine united the beliefs of the Roman sun gods with Christianity but the Bible instructs Christians to separate from such practices. History reveals that Constantine called the first universal (catholic) church council, the Council of Nicea in 325 AD, separating it from the localized instruction of the true Church as found in the teachings of the book of Acts. This action laid the foundation for what we know today as the Roman Catholic Church. Therefore, the greatest influence that Constantine had upon the true Church of Jesus Christ was the development of the universal church in Rome, better known as the Roman Catholic Church, which is clearly just a disguised version of Mithraism.

II Corinthians 6:14-18, “Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness?” And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel? And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? For ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you. And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty.”

Endnotes

(1) “Constantine the Great.” The Catholic Encyclopedia Online by New Advent, Inc. http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/04295c.htm; Dec. 2011.

(2) cf. Euseb. Alexand. in Mai, “Nov. Patr. Bibl.”, 11, 523; Augustine, Enarration on Psalm 10; Leo I, Sermon 26).

(3) Durant, William. Caesar and Christ, vol. 3, p. 659 The Story of Civilization.  New York: Simon and Schuster. 1950.

(4) “Catholic.” Def. 2. Dictionary.com;  http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/catholic; Dec. 2011.

(5) “Catechism of the Catholic Church.” Par. 552; http://www.vatican.va/archive/ENG0015/_INDEX.HTM, Dec. 2011.

(6) Dec. 2011. <http://carm.org/is-peter-the-rock>

(7) Liddell, H. (1996). A lexicon : Abridged from Liddell and Scott’s Greek-English lexicon (636). Oak Harbor, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc.

(8) Vine, W., & Bruce, F. (1981; Published in electronic form by Logos Research Systems, 1996). Vine’s Expository dictionary of Old and New Testament words (2:302). Old Tappan NJ: Revell.

(9) “Constantine the Great.” Encarta Encyclopedia. 1999

(10) Library of Nicene and Post Nicene Fathers, 2nd series (New York: Christian Literature Co., 1990), Vol I, 489-91, Eucebius: The Conversion of Constantine, chapter XXVII

(11) Library of Nicene and Post Nicene Fathers, 2nd series (New York: Christian Literature Co., 1990), Vol I, 489-91, Eucebius: The Conversion of Constantine, chapter XXVIII

(12) Huchedé, P.  Translated by JBD. History of Antichrist.  Imprimatur: Edward Charles Fabre, Bishop of Montreal.  English edition 1884, Reprint 1976.  TAN Books, Rockford (IL), p. 24

(13) Tertellian (c. 200 CE) Apology 16; Habakkuk 1:15-16; cf 1QpHab VI:3-3.

(14) “Easter.” The Encyclopedia Britannica. 1934.

(15) Dec. 2011. < http://www.fourthcentury.com/urkunde-26/>

(16) Life of Constantine, chapter 26;  http://www.newadvent.org/fathers/25021.htm, Dec. 2011.

(17) Coffman, Elesha. “Why December 25?” Christianity Today, Aug. 8, 2008

(18) Codex Justinianus lib. 3, tit. 12, 3; trans. in Philip Schaff, History of the Christian Church, Vol. 3, p. 380, note 1

(19) Tertullian, On Baptism, Anti-Nicene Christian Library, vol. II, chap. 5

(20) “Mithraism.” Catholic Encyclopedia Online by New Advent, Inc.

http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/10402a.htm; Dec. 2011.

(21) Catholic Encyclopedia, 1913 by the Encyclopedia Press, Inc. Electronic version 1997 by New Advent, Inc.

(22) Harwood, William. Mythology’s Last Gods: Yahweh and Jesus.  Amherst, NY: 1992.

(23) Dec. 2011. <http://www.newworldencyclopedia.org/entry/Mithraism>

(24) “Vicarius Fillii Dei.” Catholic Encyclopedia. 1908

(25) cf. Council of Trent: DS 1640; 1651.].—Catechism of the Catholic Church.   1994/1997 United States Catholic Conference, Inc.

(26) Martyr, Justin. First Apology, Chap 66, quoted in A. Roberts and J Donaldson edd.,The Ante-Nicene Fathers, Vol 1, Books For The Ages, AGES Software, Albany, OR, Version 2.0 1997, p. 343

(27) “Catechumen.” Catholic Encyclopedia. 1908

(28) “Mystery.” Catholic Encyclopedia. 1908

(29) “Mithraism.” Catholic Encyclopedia. 1908

(30) Berry, Gerald, Religions of the World. 1956 http://www.archive.org/details/religionsofworld00berr, Dec. 2011.

(31) Dec. 2011. <http://bible.cc/1_peter/2-6.htm>

(32) Dec. 2011. <http://bible.cc/1_peter/2-8.htm>

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