The Epistle Of Ignatius To Hero A Deacon Of Antioch by Ignatius
Chapter I.--Exhortations to earnestness and moderation.
I Exhort thee in God, that thou add [speed] to thy course, and that thou vindicate thy dignity. Have a care to preserve concord with the saints. Bear [the burdens of] the weak, that |thou mayest fulfil the law of Christ.| Devote thyself to fasting and prayer, but not beyond measure, lest thou destroy thyself thereby. Do not altogether abstain from wine and flesh, for these things are not to be viewed with abhorrence, since [the Scripture] saith, |Ye shall eat the good things of the earth.| And again, |Ye shall eat flesh even as herbs.| And again, |Wine maketh glad the heart of man, and oil exhilarates, and bread strengthens him.| But all are to be used with moderation, as being the gifts of God. |For who shall eat or who shall drink without Him? For if anything be beautiful, it is His; and if anything be good, it is His.| Give attention to reading, that thou mayest not only thyself know the laws, but mayest also explain them to others, as the earnest servant of God. |No man that warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life, that he may please him who hath chosen him to be a soldier; and if a man also strive for masteries, yet is he not crowned except he strive lawfully.| I that am in bonds pray that my soul may be in place of yours.