Lives of Saints - St. Polycarp, Bishop of Smyrna Christianity - Books
I am Yahweh your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage.                You shall have no other gods before me.                You shall not make for yourselves an idol, nor any image of anything that is in the heavens above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth:                you shall not bow yourself down to them, nor serve them, for I, Yahweh your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children, on the third and on the fourth generation of those who hate me,                and showing loving kindness to thousands of those who love me and keep my commandments.                You shall not take the name of Yahweh your God in vain, for Yahweh will not hold him guiltless who takes his name in vain.                Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy.                You shall labor six days, and do all your work,                but the seventh day is a Sabbath to Yahweh your God. You shall not do any work in it, you, nor your son, nor your daughter, your male servant, nor your female servant, nor your livestock, nor your stranger who is within your gates;                for in six days Yahweh made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested the seventh day; therefore Yahweh blessed the Sabbath day, and made it holy.                Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long in the land which Yahweh your God gives you.                You shall not murder.                You shall not commit adultery.                You shall not steal.                You shall not give false testimony against your neighbor.                You shall not covet your neighbor's house. You shall not covet your neighbor's wife, nor his male servant, nor his female servant, nor his ox, nor his donkey, nor anything that is your neighbor's.
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St. Polycarp, Bishop of Smyrna
   

St. Polycarp was Bishop of Smyrna and one of the Apostolic Fathers. He was a student of the Apostle John the Theologian and was personally acquainted with 'others who had seen the Lord'. St. Polycarp served as a link between the Apostolic age and Orthodoxy of the latter part of the second century.

St. Polycarp was a new kind of Christian for his time. He was not a Jew and was not familiar with Old Testament Scriptures; instead he immersed himself in the Apostolic tradition. This is evident by his writings that weaved together phrases from a wide range of Apostolic writings.

Here is a quote from his letter to the Philippians, dated ca. 135 AD, that seems appropriate for the Easter period, "Everyone who does not confess that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is an Antichrist; whoever does not confess the testimony of the cross, is of the devil; and whoever perverts the sayings of the Lord for his own desires, and says that there is neither resurrection nor judgement, such a one is the first-born of Satan. Let us therefore, leave the foolishness and the false-teaching of the crowd, and turn back to the word which was delivered to us in the beginningÉ Let us, then, continue unceasingly in our hope and in the Pledge of our justification, that is, in Christ Jesus, who bore our sins in His own body on the tree, who did no sin, nor was guile found in His mouth; yet, for our sakes, that we might live in Him, He endured everything".

On the day of his death and once he finished his prayers in which he remembered everyone he met, St. Polycarp was seated on a donkey and led into the city (presumably Rome), where he was asked to slander Christ. St. Polycarp replied "Eighty-six years I have served Him, and He has never done me wrong. How, then, should I be able to blaspheme my King who has saved me?" This indicates that, even if he was baptised as a child, he must have been born around 69 AD.

St. Polycarp was then beaten to death and his body, being confiscated by a centurion, was burnt. His bones were later collected and hidden by Christians. It is traditionally accepted that he was martyred on Saturday 7 March 155 AD.

Source: http://www.orthodoxchristian.info

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