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Egyptian Contribution to Christianity 305
writer. To this period belong his great works on Christian
Philosophy, the frcpl ap^tDv, and the earlier books of a
Commentary on St. John, perhaps also the beginnings of a
monumental edition of the text of the Old Testament, the
Hexapla, containing in six parallel columns the Hebrew, a trans-
literation of the Hebrew, the ancient Greek Version of the
Seventy and the three later versions of Aquila, Symmachus, and
Theodotion. After his settlement at Caesarea in A.D. 231,
Origen laboured on unceasingly at his textual and exegetical
work, at the same time instructing the whole body of the faith-
ful and delivering homilies in the congregation. To this later
period there belongs also his great work of Christian Apolo-
getics, the Contra Celsum^ in eight books, which has come down
to us entire. Finally Origen died a martyr for the Christian
faith. In the persecution of Decius he was thrown into prison,
where he suffered terrible tortures. On the death of Decius
in 251 he was released, but his sufferings had shattered his health
and he died two years later at Tyre in the seventieth year of his age.
Thus the whole course of Origen's life shows him to have
been whole-heartedly identified with the Christian Church.
He was a philosophical thinker, but first and last he was a
believing and confessing Christian. He begins the Trept dp^oiv
with a summary statement of the faith which all believers should
and do accept. This rule of faith, with the Scriptures which
substantiate the rule, has for him incontestable authority. And
the theological principle is in harmony with his practical atti-
tude. When the heathen Celsus chides the Christian teachers
with being concerned exclusively with 'simpletons, low folk
and fools, slaves, womenkind and children', Origen rebuts the
charge, but only to insist that the Divine Word does indeed
call such as these, though not these alone, 'since the Christ is
the saviour of all men, and especially of such as believe, whether
prudent or simple'.1 This catholicity of temper distinguishes
1 Contra Celsum^ z. iii. 49.