Clement of Alexandria, The Rich Man's Salvation

LCL 92: 270-271

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Clement of Alexandria


935 P.

1. Οἱ μὲν τοὺς ἐγκωμιαστικοὺς λόγους τοῖς πλουσίοις δωροφοροῦντες οὐ μόνον κόλακες καὶ ἀνελεύθεροι δικαίως ἂν ἔμοιγε κρίνεσθαι δοκοῖεν, ὡς ἐπὶ πολλῷ προσποιούμενοι χαρίσασθαι τὰ ἀχάριστα, ἀλλὰ καὶ ἀσεβεῖς καὶ ἐπίβουλοι· ἀσεβεῖς μέν, ὅτι παρέντες αἰνεῖν καὶ δοξάζειν τὸν μόνον τέλειον καὶ ἀγαθὸν θεόν, ἐξ οὗ τὰ πάντα καὶ δι᾿ οὗ τὰ πάντα καὶ εἰς ὃν τὰ πάντα, περιάπτουσι το<ύτου>1 τὸ γέρας ἀνθρώποις ἐν ἀσ<ώτῳ καὶ βορβορώδει>2 βίῳ κυλινδουμένοις <καὶ>3 τὸ κεφάλαιον ὑποκειμένοις4 τῇ κρίσει τοῦ θεοῦ· ἐπίβουλοι δέ, ὅτι καὶ αὐτῆς τῆς περιουσίας καθ᾿ αὑτὴν ἱκανῆς οὔσης χαυνῶσαι τὰς ψυχὰς τῶν κεκτημένων καὶ διαφθεῖραι καὶ ἀποστῆσαι τῆς ὁδοῦ, δι᾿ ἧς ἐπιτυχεῖν ἔστι σωτηρίας, οἵδε προσεκπλήσσουσι τὰς γνώμας τῶν πλουσίων ταῖς ἡδοναῖς τῶν ἀμέτρων ἐπαίνων ἐπαίροντες καὶ καθάπαξ τῶν ὅλων πραγμάτων πλὴν τοῦ πλούτου, 936 P. δι᾿ ὃν θαυμάζονται, | παρασκευάζοντες ὑπερφρονεῖν, τὸ δὴ τοῦ λόγου πῦρ ἐπὶ πῦρ μετοχετεύοντες, τύφῳ


The Rich Man’s Salvation

The Rich Man’s Salvation

1. Men who offer laudatory speeches as presents to The sin of flattering rich men the rich may rightly be classed, in my opinion, not only as flatterers and servile, since in the hope of a large return they make a show of granting favours that are really no favours, but also as impious and insidious. They are impious, because, while neglecting to praise and glorify the only perfect and good God, from whom are all things and through whom are all things and to whom are all things,a they invest with His prerogative men who are wallowing in a riotous and filthy life and, in short, are lying under the judgment of God. They are insidious, because, although mere abundance is by itself quite enough to puff up the souls of its possessors, and to corrupt them, and to turn them aside from the way by which salvation can be reached, these men bring fresh delusion to the minds of the rich by exciting them with the pleasures that come from their immoderate praises, and by rendering them contemptuous of absolutely everything in the world except the wealth which is the cause of their being admired. In the words of the proverb, they carry fire to fire,b when

DOI: 10.4159/DLCL.clement_alexandria-rich_mans_salvation.1919