This, then, is the account of the blessed polycarp, who, being the twelfth that was martyred in smyrna reckoning those also of philadelphia, yet occupies a place of his own in the memory of all men, insomuch that he is everywhere spoken of by the heathen themselves. Polycarp of smyrna book the indianapolis public library. This is a modern translation of the epistle of polycarp to the philippians, the same church that paul wrote to almost a century earlier. Martyrdom of polycarp is a manuscript written in the form of a letter that relates the religious martyrdom of polycarp, bishop of smyrna the site of the modern city of izmir, turkey and disciple of john the apostle in the 2nd century ad. If anyone in the postapostolic church was in a position to know the answer to this question, polycarp of smyrna was. Polycarp of smyrna resources american bible society. It was initially an archbishopric, but was promoted to a metropolis during the 9th century. The development of the canon of the new testament polycarp.
And from the beginning to the end, his faith lasted. The letter begins with an account of the persecution and the heroism of the martyrs. The author has marked all the times the bible is quoted and has done a great job explaining the text. Polycarp, the shepherd of hermas, and the matyrdoms of st.
Historically, he formed a link between the apostolic and patristic ages. Books by polycarp author of the epistle of polycarp to the. According to the martyrdom of polycarp, he died a martyr, bound and burned at the stake, then stabbed when the fire failed to consume his body. Books by polycarp author of the epistle of polycarp to. Unlike many in the early church of god, polycarp has several mentions in letters in surviving literature while he was alive. Polycarp, bishop of smyrna saint polycarp bishop of. This work has been selected by scholars as being culturally. The letters to the seven churches in asia at the beginning of the book of revelation include a letter to the church in smyrna, identifying it as a church undergoing persecution. This work was reproduced from the original artifact, and remains as true to the original work as possible. He was not merely an illustrious teacher, but also a preeminent martyr, whose death all desire to imitate, being altogether consistent with the gospel of.
And of polycarp, bishop of smyrna, in the middle of the second century by. Polycarp of smyrna was appointed bishop of smyrna by the apostle john and might even have been the angel of the church in smyrna addressed in revelation. Historians, however, offer some interesting insights regarding polycarp, a student of the apostle john and the one who later became the bishop of smyrna during the second century, and polycrates, a younger contemporary of polycarp who served as the bishop in ephesus. It was sent to the christian church in philomelium, asia minor, from the church in smyrna modern izmir, tur. This large hardback book for children, from the pen of sinclair ferguson, is beautifully illustrated by alison brown. Polycarp s was among the first recorded christian martyrdoms. Polycarp 60155 ce, also known as saint polycarp, was a christian bishop of smyrna, the modern city of izmir in turkey. From the holy polycarp, overseer of smyrna, and holy martyr, an epistle to the philippians introduction. This large hardback book for children, from the pen of sinclair ferguson, is beautifully illustrated by allison brown. Polycarp, according to ignatius, was the bishop overseeing pastor of the church of god in smyrna. The young polycarp himself was one of his disciples, and in later life was fond of recalling his precious memories of the saint.
This text is the story, from around 160 ad, of the martyrdom of polycarp, the bishop of the church in smyrna, a city in asia minor modern izmir in turkey devoted to roman worship. Jerome wrote that polycarp was a disciple of the apostle john and by him ordained bishop of smyrna. Polycarp saint, bishop of smyrna worldcat identities. She had recently started rereading the apostle john series and in book 1 hold the faith, polycarp was introduced. Dec 14, 20 discover book depositorys huge selection of polycarp saint bishop of smyrna books online. But, as koester writes, polycarp was doubtlessly the most significant ecclesiastical leader of the first half of ii c. Here is the link to the martyrdom of polycarp as well. Ignatius of antioch and polycarp of smyrna were two of the greatest leaders of christianity in the first half of the second century. The text of the harris fragments on polycarp and john raises new exciting questions about martyrdom and apostolicity, the earliest history of the important christian communities at ephesus and smyrna, and the legacies of polycarp and john among early christians. Philippi, on the other hand, being one of pauls churches, should have had a group of elders that were all bishops. Polycarp was a fascinating person to research, and as it turned out, june.
The epistle of polycarp to the philippians commonly abbreviated pol. Saint polycarp of smyrna martyred in his 87th year, ca. He loved and served his lord for over eighty years. The researchers library of ancient texts volume ii. Religion polycarp polycarp a father of the christian church polycarp is a celebrated figure in the history of christianity. According to irenaeus, polycarp was instructed by the apostles, and was brought into contact with many who had seen christ. Includes clement of rome, mathetes, polycarp, ignatius, barnabas, papias, justin martyr, and irenaeus. Timothy george preached at beeson divinity school in fall 2018 on rev. There polycarp, the bishop of smyrna, was martyred, though without the sanction of the roman government. Mercy to you and peace from god the allpowerful and jesus christ our savior be multiplied.
It forms the earliest account of christian martyrdom outside of the new testament. According to the account of his pupil, irenaeus, he was himself a pupil of the apostles, more especially of john, and had conversed with many who had seen the lord in the flesh. Polycarp, greek bishop of smyrna modern izmir, turkey was the leading 2ndcentury figure in roman asia by virtue of his intermediary position between the apostolic and patristic ages and his work during the initial appearance of the fundamental theological literature of christianity. Polycarp occupies an important place in the history of the early christian church. Polycarp was a bishop of the early church, a disciple of the apostle john, a contemporary of ignatius, and the teacher of irenaeus. This work has been selected by scholars as being culturally important, and is part of the knowledge base of civilization as we know it. In the second and third chapters of the book of revelation, there are seven letters addressed to the angel of each of seven churches. Polycarp served as bishop of smyrna for some six decades, from the closing years of the first century to the midsecond century. Polycarp was bishop of smyrna today known as izmir, a city on the west coast of turkey. Polycarp is recognized as a saint in both the roman catholic and eastern orthodox churches. Polycarp s martyrdom is described in a letter from the church of smyrna, to the church of philomelium and to all the brotherhoods of the holy and universal church, etc.
He also had several mentions in early literature after his death. This large hardback book for children, from the pen of sinclair ferguson, is beautifully illustrated with paintings on almost every page by allison brown. Saint polycarp, bishop of smyrna and holy martyr c. Weidmann accomplishes several important things in one volume. Martyrdom of polycarp, letter that describes the death by burning of polycarp, bishop of smyrna in asia minor. Polycarps most popular book is early christian writings. February 23 is the feast day of polycarp of smyrna. Ignatius in rome during the reign of trajan, and polycarp in smyrna some time in the midcentury. Saint polycarp, bishop of smyrna and holy martyr, to the philippians polycarp and the presbyters with him, to the church of god, the one temporarily residing in philippi. Several years ago, i was invited to speak at a conference which took place in the city of izmir, turkey. Polycarp s most popular book is early christian writings.
Mar 01, 2019 smyrna was located in asia minor, present day turkey, and is one of the seven churches mentioned in the book of revelation. It had polycarp, one bishop who was basically the head of the group of elders. Jul 02, 2012 this, of course, doesnt prove that polycarp is correct in his assessment. Take a quick journey with me and learn about a early church father named polycarp. A direct pupil of the apostle john, polycarp lived between 70 and 155 a. Polycarp resided in asia minor as bishop of smyrna and sent an epistle to the philippians c. It is the earliest chronicle of a martyrdom outside the new testament. Why christians should know more about him the church of rome, eastern orthodox, continuing church of god, and various protestants consider that polycarp of smyrna was a saint and a significant christian leader in asia minor in the second century. He is among the earliest christians whose writings survived. Dec 30, 2017 take a quick journey with me and learn about a early church father named polycarp. He died a martyr when he was stabbed after an attempt to burn him at the stake failed. And from the beginning to the end his faith lasted.
The second letter is addressed to the angel of the church in smyrna. Polycarp was a noted and respected bishop of smyrna, one of only two churches not admonished by jesus in the seven letters found in revelation 2 and 3. Polycarp the epistle to the philippians and of the letter of the smyrn. The christian community of smyrna was one of the seven churches of asia, mentioned by apostle john in the book of revelation. The account is in the form of a letter from eyewitnesses to other churches in the area. It is widely believed to be a composite of material written at two different times see unity, in the first half of the second century. The additional writings in this book have an antisemitic slant which would not be true to polycarp he being an early believer in the hebraic jewish yeshua the anointed one and as a disciple of john yohannan the apostle who was also a natural born son of abraham. This is the story of the blessed polycarp, the twelfth martyr in smyrna, though he has a unique place memory of all people, being remembered even by all the heathen.
Kenneth howell ignatius of antioch and polycarp of smyrna were two of the greatest leaders of christianity in the first half of the second century. He opposed the teachings of the marcionite and valentinian heresies. A new translation and theological commentary by dr. In remembrance, we offer the story of his martyrdom the encyclical epistle of the church at smyrna concerning the martyrdom of the holy polycarp. This book is polycarp s letter to the philippians and then a letter from smyrna christians writing in detail about polycarp s martyrdom.
As a witness, he led a life of heartfelt purity ending his earthly sojourn as a faithful martyr to his. Smyrna early became a christian city, for there was one of the seven churches of the book of revelation 2. As bishop, polycarp had a reputation for defending orthodoxy. Martyrdom of polycarp patristic literature britannica. As bishop of smyrna, polycarp was a father figure and mentor to irenaeus of lyons ca 120202 c. He is numbered among the apostolic fathers, who are not as one might think the fathers of the apostles, but their spiritual sons. Bishop, martyr, and teacher of apostolic tradition 1 who was saint polycarp of smyrna. One cant help but wonder if this angel was referring to johns student and disciple polycarp. The genuine epistles of the apostolical fathers, s. The epistle of polycarp to the philippians, greek, latin. Polycarp of smyrna the man whose faith lasted book. Though polycarp is one of the most celebrated characters in ancient christendom, very little is known of his life.52 406 460 1237 725 1322 1212 957 270 1585 373 49 1249 363 1551 1119 980 852 1042 1621 1358 319 325 89 807 1383 110 1631 1281 1426 1450 992 405 1488 682 749 224