It is with great pleasure I present to you: The Ignatius Project

In 1998, as a freshman at Cal-State Fullerton, I began to study the Scriptures and Christian history in-depth. Soon I became aware of an Early Church Father by the name of Ignatius of Antioch. He had been a student of John the Apostle, and was a leader in the second generation Church.

Around AD 110 Ignatius was arrested and transported from Syrian Antioch to Rome, where he was destined to die a martyr's death. On his way to Rome, Ignatius penned these seven letters as his farewell and dying testament to six churches and his dear friend, Polycarp.

I was deeply touched by these letters then, and they still resonate with me today. To me they are a valuable tool in understanding the pitfalls so often encountered by second-generation Christians. I believe these letters contain much needed advice and address many of the concerns faced by the modern Church.

The following edition of the Seven Letters of Ignatius is based on the 1693 translation work of William Wake, and has been revised by myself since 2002. However, in the Letter to Smyrna this is only true for the first 7 1/2 verses; the majority has been taken from Cyril Richardson's 1935 translation. Such is the case for now, until I can revise it myself.

I pray these letters are a blessing to your life as they were to mine.

Pastor Mike
January 2013

4 Ignatius: The Letter to the Church at Rome

Posted by Michael La Framboise on Friday, January 25, 2013
Chapter 1
FROM Ignatius, also known as Theophorus, to the church which has obtained mercy in the majesty of the Most High Father, and His only begotten Son, Jesus Christ; to you who are beloved and illuminated in the will of Him who wills all things, according to the love of Jesus Christ our God.

    In His Name I greet you who reside in the regions of the city of Rome, as you are united in flesh and Spirit to all of His commands, and filled with the grace of God; may you have all joy in our God Jesus Christ.

    2  Finally, I have been given the opportunity through my prayers, to see your sweet faces, just as I had desired for so long to do. But I have received more in my chains than I had ever asked for; I look forward to seeing you. If indeed it is the will of God to grant me the end which I desire.

    3  Surely the beginning of my end is well prepared, if only I may be given the grace toaccept without hesitation that which is appointed to me.  4  But I am afraid that your love for me will only cause me injury. It is easy to do as you please in what you think is right, but if you spare my life, it is difficult for me to attain God.  5  Rather than pleasing men, I want you to please God, as you have been. Understanding that I will never have such an opportunity as this to attain to God; just as you will never be given a greater work, than to now be silent on my behalf. For if you will remain silent, I shall then be made a partaker of God.  6  However, If you love my flesh more than my soul, I will then have to run my course again. This is why you could offer me no greater kindness, than to allow me to be sacrificed to God on the altar which is already prepared.  7  In so doing, when you are brought together in a lovely chorus, you may sing to the Father through
Jesus Christ; who has determined to bring to you the Bishop of Syria, as called from the East to the West.

    8  Certainly it is good that I should set off from this world, to the place of God; that I may rise up to Him.  9  You have never been envious of anyone; and you have taught others to do the same. Therefore, I want you to do those things yourselves, which also you teach.  10  Just pray for me. that God would give me both inward and outward strength, that I may not only profess, but will: that I would not only be called a Christian, but be found one.  11  Because if I am found a Christian, then I may deserve to be called one: and then I will be thought faithful, when I am no longer in the world.

    12  Nothing seen is eternal: things seen are temporal; but things which are not seen, are eternal.  13  Even our God, Jesus Christ, as He is now in the Father, appears much more than when He appeared on Earth.

    14  Christianity is not a work of persuasion: but of greatness of mind (Especially since we are hated by the world.).

Chapter 2
    I HAVE written to the churches, declaring to all of them that I am willing to die for God, unless you prevent me.  2  I beg you not to show me unseasoned love. Allow my flesh to be food to the wild beasts; for by them I shall attain to God.

    3  Indeed I am the wheat of God; and I am to be ground by the teeth of the wild beasts; that I may be found the pure bread of Christ.  4  Instead, you should encourage the beasts to leave no remnant of my body; that they should become my tomb; so that in death, I may not be a trouble to anyone.  5  As my body is taken from the world, I shall truly be the disciple of Jesus Christ. Therefore, pray to Christ for me, that through these
instruments I may become the sacrifice of God.

    6  I do not command you as if I were Peter or Paul. They were Apostles, I am a dead man; they were free, but to this day I am still a slave.  7  However, through my suffering I will become the free man of Jesus Christ, as I will rise in freedom.

    In my chains I have learned not to desire the vain things of the world.  8  From Syria to Rome, I have fought with beasts by land and sea; night and day: as I am chained to ten leopards, literally a band of solders. Although they have treated me with all kindness, they are the worse for it.  9  Because I would have benefited far more from their brutality; yet, perhaps I am not justified in these thoughts.

    10  I look to the beasts which are prepared for me, that I may challenge all their fierceness upon me.  11  To that end I will encourage them, that they will be sure to devour me; lest they react to me as they have done others, whom out of fear they wouldn't touch. But if they will not attack me willingly, I will provoke them to it.

    12  Forgive me in this matter; but I know what is prudent for me. I am becoming a disciple, and nothing— whether visible or invisible— shall move me from my course; I will attain to Jesus Christ.

    13  Bring on the fire and the cross; bring on the rage of wild beasts; bring on the breaking of bones and the tearing of limbs; bring on the ripping apart of the whole body; bring on all the wicked torments of the Devil-- only give me the joy of Jesus Christ.

    14  All the pleasures of the world, and all the kingdoms of this age do not profit me at all. I would rather die for Jesus Christ than to rule over the whole earth. As it is written, "what shall it profit a man if he gains the whole world, but loses his own soul". I seek Him who died for us; it is He that I desire, the One who rose again. This is the treasure which is laid up for me.

    15  Forgive me for saying this, my brothers, but do not hinder me to live. Just as you see that my desire is to attain God, do not restrain me from Him simply for the sake of this world; nor should you reduce me for bringing up the matter. Allow me to lay hold of the Pure Light: for when I enter, I will have indeed become the servant of God. 16  Permit me to imitate the passion of my God. If anyone has it within himself, let him consider that which 1 desire; and let he that understands the things which constrain me, have compassion towards me.

Chapter 3
   THE PRINCE of this world would carry me off to corrupt my mind towards my God, if he was given the chance. To those of you who are present in the church, I ask that you do not help the Devil; rather join me, which is to join God.

    2  Do not profess Jesus Christ, and yet covet the world. Do not allow envy to dwell within you: do not mind me as a person, but simply believe the message I write to you. Because I would rather not exhort you in these things when I come.

    3  Although I am alive as I write this, my desire is to die. My Love was crucified; and there is a fire within me which desires not to be quenched, but raging through me, declares to me. "Come to the Father".  4  I take no enjoyment in the food of corruption, nor in the pleasures of this life.  5  I desire God's heavenly Bread, which is the flesh of Jesus Christ, who was of the seed of David. I long to drink His blood. His incorruptible love which gives eternal life.

    6  I no longer desire to live in the manner of men, and I will not have to if you would only consent. Therefore, be willing to please God. I have only exhorted you by a short letter; 1 pray that you take heed.  7  Jesus Christ will reveal to you that I speak in truth. There is no deceit within my mouth, and the Father has truly spoken through me. Pray for me, that I may accomplish that which I desire.  8  I have not written this letter to you in the flesh, but according to the will of God. If you love me, I will be allowed to suffer; but if I am not permitted to suffer, then by your hate you will declare that I am not worthy as a martyr.

    9  Remember the Church of Syria in your prayers, as they now enjoy God as their Shepherd, rather than me. Jesus Christ will look after it by your love.  10  I am ashamed even to be counted as one of them; for I am surely not worthy, as I was born out of season, I am certainly least among them. Only through the mercy of God have I become Somebody-- if indeed I attain God.

    11  My spirit greets you, as well as the love of the churches which have received me in the Name of Jesus Christ. They have welcomed me, and not simply as a passer-by; even those who were far out of the way traveled on to the next city to meet me.

    12  I am writing these things to you from Smyrna, wherein is the most worthy Church of Ephesus.  13  My beloved Crocus is now with me, as well as many others. And surely you are well aware of those from Syria, who by the glory of God have gone on before me to Rome.  14  Let them know that I am getting close, for they are certainly worthy of both God and you; refresh these people in all things.

    15  I have written this letter to you on the eighth day of September. Be strong to the end, in the patience of Jesus Christ.