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ANF04. Fathers of the Third Century: Tertullian, Part Fourth; Minucius Felix; Commodian; Origen, Parts First and Second
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Chapter VII.—Of Elaborate Dressing of the Hair in Other Ways, and Its Bearing Upon Salvation.

What service, again, does all the labour spent in arranging the hair render to salvation?  Why is no rest allowed to your hair, which must now be bound, now loosed, now cultivated, now thinned out?  Some are anxious to force their hair into curls, some to let it hang loose and flying; not with good simplicity:  beside which, you affix I know not what enormities of subtle and textile perukes; now, after the manner of a helmet of undressed hide, as it were a sheath for the head and a covering for the crown; now, a mass (drawn) backward toward the neck.  The wonder is, that there is no (open) contending against the Lord’s prescripts!  It has been pronounced that no one can add to his own stature.194194    Mensuram.  See Matt. vi. 27.  You, however, do add to your weight some kind of rolls, or shield-bosses, to be piled upon your necks!  If you feel no shame at the enormity, feel some at the pollution; for fear you may be fitting on a holy and Christian head the slough195195    Exuvias. of some one else’s196196    “Alieni:”  perhaps here ="alien,” i.e., “heathen,” as in other places. head, unclean perchance, guilty perchance and destined to hell.197197    Gehennæ.  Nay, rather banish quite away from your “free”198198    Comp. Gal. iv. 31; v. 13. head all this slavery of ornamentation.  In vain do you labour to seem adorned:  in vain do you call in the aid of all the most skilful manufacturers of false hair.  God bids you “be veiled.”199199    See 1 Cor. xi. 2–16; and comp. de Or., c. xxii., and the treatise de Virg. Vel.  I believe (He does so) for fear the heads of some should be seen!  And oh that in “that day”200200    Comp. ad Ux., b. ii. c. iii. of Christian exultation, I, most miserable (as I am), may elevate my head, even though below (the level of) your heels!  I shall (then) see whether you will rise with (your) ceruse and rouge and saffron, and in all that parade of headgear:201201    Ambitu (habitu is a conjectural emendation noticed by Oehler) capitis.  whether it will be women thus tricked out whom the angels carry up to meet Christ in the air!202202    See 1 Thess. iv. 13–17.  If these (decorations) are now good, and of God, they will then also present themselves to the rising bodies, and will recognise their several places.  But nothing can rise except flesh and spirit sole and pure.203203    Comp. 1 Cor. xv. 50 with 1 Thess. v. 23.  Whatever, therefore, does not rise in (the form of)204204    Or, “within the limits of the flesh and the spirit.” spirit and flesh is condemned, because it is not of God.  From things which are condemned abstain, even at the present day.  At the present day let God see you such as He will see you then.


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