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Ad Martyras by Tertullian

Chapter VI. Passing, too, from examples of enduring constancy having such an origin as thisà

Passing, too, from examples of enduring constancy having such an origin as this, let us turn to a simple contemplation of man's estate in its ordinary conditions, that mayhap from things which happen to us whether we will or no, and which we must set our minds to bear, we may get instruction. How often, then, have fires consumed the living! How often have wild beasts torn men in pieces, it may be in their own forests, or it may be in the heart of cities, when they have chanced to escape from their dens! How many have fallen by the robber's sword! How many have suffered at the hands of enemies the death of the cross, after having been tortured first, yes, and treated with every sort of contumely! One may even suffer in the cause of a man what he hesitates to suffer in the cause of God. In reference to this indeed, let the present time bear testimony, when so many persons of rank have met with death in a mere human being's cause, and that though from their birth and dignities and bodily condition and age such a fate seemed most unlikely; either suffering at his hands if they have taken part against him, or from his enemies if they have been his partisans.
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