Saint Chrysostom on Acts 15

“Then all the multitude kept silence,” etc. (v. 12.) There was no arrogance in the Church. After Peter Paul speaks, and none silences him: James waits patiently, not starts up (for the next word). Great the orderliness (of the proceedings). No word speaks John here, no word the other Apostles, but held their peace, for James was invested with the chief rule, and think it no hardship. So clean was their soul from love of glory. “And after that they had held their peace, James answered,” etc. (v. 13.) (b) Peter indeed spoke more strongly, but James here more mildly: for thus it behooves one in high authority, to leave what is unpleasant for others to say, while he himself appears in the milder part.”

Homilies on the Acts of the Apostles, 23

18 Responses to Saint Chrysostom on Acts 15

  1. If you don’t know about Gallicanism in the western medieval world, why are we having this conversation?

    Look, this thread is from Feb 2007. Stop trolling. Last warning.

  2. Euthymios,

    I am not interested inspooof texting. Allof these citations have been dealt with before in the literature on both sides. Simply posting them without substantial argument or analysis is a mark of being a hack. And I am not going permit you to troll on old posts. If you continue, I’ll just add your isp to the ban list.

    As for the content, “head” and “primacy” aren’t sufficient to prove the Vat I definition. The Gallicans thought that Peter was the head and had the Primacy and Gallicanism isn’t taught by Vat I. The problem is that people read back into these quotes meanings of later definitions, rather than establishing on the basis of text and other relevent historical data from that time period that certain concepts were in fact in mind.

    So again, stop trolling.

  3. Euthymios says:

    Anyone who denies the fact that all the Fathers believed Peter held the primacy and principality over the other apostles, does not know the Fathers.

  4. Euthymios says:

    Don’t forget this from the same saint:

    “How then did James receive the throne of Jerusalem?” I would answer that He ordained this man [Peter] teacher, not of that throne, but of the world.” [Hom. 88in Jn. PG 59:478-80].


    “And why, then, passing by the others, does He speak with (Peter) about these things? [John 21, 15] He was chosen one of the apostles, and mouth of the disciples. and leader [koruphe] of the choir. This is also why Paul once went up to see him. rather than the others. [Gal. 1, 18] and to show him that he ought to have confidence, as if the denial were done away with, He entrusts him with the presidency of the brethren…And He does not bring foward the denial, or reproaches him for for what happened, but says “if you love me, preside over the brethren.” …A third time He commands the same thing, showing how greatly He honors the presidency over His own sheep… And if anyone were to say, “How then did James receive the throne of Jerusalem?” I would answer that He ordained this man [Peter] teacher, not of that throne, but of the world.” [Hom. 88in Jn. PG 59:478-80].

    “Peter, the coryphaeus of the choir, mouth of all the apostles, head of that tribe, prostates of the whole world, foundation of the Church, the ardent lover of Christ, for He says: “Peter, lovest thou me more than these?” [On 2Tim. 3, 1. PG 56, 277].

    “Peter, the summit [koruphe] of the apostles, the first in the Church, the friend of Christ, who received a revelation not from man but from the Father, as the Lord bears witness to him, saying: “Blessed art thou…” This very Peter–and when I say ‘Peter I name that unbroken rock, that firm foundation, the great apostle, first of the disciples, the first called and the first who obeyed –he committed no little offence but an exceedingly great one, denying the Master…” [Hom. 3 de Eleemos. PG 49:298].

    “…Peter, the foundation of the Church, vehement lover of Christ…who traversed the universe, lay down his net into the sea, and caught the entire world…” [Vidi Dominum, Hom. IV, 3. PG 56: 123].

    “…the holy coryphaeus of the blessed choir, the lover of Christ…the ardent disciple, who was entrused with the keys of heaven, who received the spiritual revelation…” [Hom. VI on Acts. PG 60: 56].

    “Peter, the coryphaeus of the choir of the apostles, mouth of the disciples, pillar of the church, bulwark of the faith, foundation of the confession, a fisherman of the world…the first of the apostles, the foundation of the Church, the coryphaeus of the choir of the apostles…” [Hom. de decem mille tal. 3; ad eos qui scandal. sunt 17].

    Saint John Chrysostom depicts Peter as exercising the apostolic primacy at the very beginning of the Church, after Pentecost: “In those days Peter rose up in the midst of the disciples.” [Acts I, 15]. Both as a fervent one, and as entrusted by Christ with the flock… [Peter] is first to act with authority in the matter, as the one entrusted with them all, for to him Christ said: “And thou, being converted, strenghten thy brethren.” [Hom. 3 in Acts. PG 60: 33, 37].

    “Peter, the foundation, the pillar…God allowed him to fall, because He was going to make him ruler [arxonta] of the entire world so that, remembering his own fall, he might forgive those who fall in the future. And that what I have said is no conjecture, listen to Christ Himself saying: “Simon, Simon…” [Hom. quod frequenter conveniendum sit, 5. PG 63: 465].

    “…[when] that coryphaeus Peter, after a thousand wonders and signs and so much warning and consel [had fallen’, He [Christ] overlooked it and established him first of the apostles…” [In Ps. 129. PG 55: 375].

    “Why did He shed His blood? In order that He might gain possession of those sheep He entrusted to Peter and those who came after him.” [De Sacerdotio II, 1/ PG 48: 632].

  5. Sharon says:

    One of the best locations I’ve come across lately!!! Definately a permanent bookmark! Visit my sites, please:

  6. acolyte says:


    Yes, among other things.

  7. Michael says:

    Doesn’t St. Chrysostom also say that not only Peter, but also John, received the Keys of the Kingdom? That is a blow to RC apologists who insist that Peter alone held the Keys.

  8. acolyte says:


    That is one of the better books defending and articulating the papal theory.

  9. Jack says:


    Thanks, but I cannnot read Thomistic garbage anymore. It gives me a headache. I was not looking for a Roman apologia.

  10. William B says:

    Most of the Orthodox arguments against the RC papal theory are summarized in The Patriarchal Encyclical of 1895.

  11. acolyte says:


    Try Charles Journet’s The Church of the Word Incarnate.

  12. Jack says:

    BTW, this sounds exactly like Pelikan’s exegesis of Acts. He was a believer in the essence-energy distinction as well.

  13. Jack says:

    I was looking for a good work on the RC papacy.

  14. William B says:

    Schatz’s book is excellent!

  15. Perry Robinson says:

    Yes, why do you ask?

  16. Jack says:


    Has anyone read Klaus Schatz?

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