Saturday, December 1, 2012

Is the Fornicator of 1 Corinthians Referenced Again in 2 Corinthians?

Tertullian knows of some who claim this even though he denies it:

We know well their suspicions even about these matters (i.e. forgiveness of sins). For in fact they are suspecting that St. Paul, the apostle, has given his forgiveness in the second epistle of the Corinthians to the same fornicator, whom he in the first epistle had said was to deliver unto Satan for the destruction of the flesh, the impious heir of his father's wife, as if he had later on changed his mind, writing: "But if any have caused grief, he hath not grieved me, but in part, that I may not overcharge you all. Sufficient is the punishment which was inflicted of many. So that contrariwise ye ought rather to forgive him and comfort him, lest perhaps such a one should be swallowed up with overmuch sorrow. Wherefore I beseech you, that ye would conform your love toward him. For to this end also did I write that I might know the proof of you, whether ye be obedient to me in all things. To whom ye forgive anything, I forgive also. For if I too forgave anything, I forgave it in Christ. Lest Satan should get an advantage of us, for we are not ignorant of his devices." [Tertullian Pudicitia 13]

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