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Purchase of this book includes free trial access to www.million-books.com where you can read more than a million books for free. This is an OCR edition with typos. Excerpt from book: ,7 But although small in size, yet as it is wholly devoted to matters of controversy between him and his opponent Parmenian, I have found more facts in it pertaining to the complaints of the ordinary transactions of the Donatists, and of their inroads on the Catholics, than in Augustine or any other opponent of this ancient community. But these complaints were similar to those which are always made concerning a new party which arises in an old and lukewarm church. This earliest writer against the Donatists was severe and mild by turns; but his concessions to his opponents were quite unusual, as will hereafter be seen. In the midst of his Catholic zeal he claimed a brotherhood with the Donatists, and never branded j them with the odious name of heretics. Optatus, says Du Pin, begins his first book with words full of charity. He complained that the peace which Jesus Christ left to his church was disturbed by the schism and the actions of the Donatists, yet he gives them the name and the title of brethren. Though they renounce us, says he, though all the world knows that they hate us and detest us, though they would not have us call them brethren, yet we I will follow the command of the prophet in saying, nevertheless ye are our brethren, although ye are not good and kind to us. We have one spiritual nativity, but are different in our ways; therefore let no one wonder that I call them brethren since they cannot be otherwise, whether they will or not. Now, said Optatus to Parmenian, so often as I have shown that we are the children of the same mother, which you cannot deny, yet you continue your scandals against us. Finally, with you and with us there is the same form of discipline, we read the same scriptures, we have the same faith, the same rule of faith, and the ...
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