"If I undertook, said I, "to prove this by doctrines and arguments of man, you should not bear with me. But if I frequently quote Scripture passages, and so many of them, referring to this point, and ask you to comprehend them, you are hard-hearted in the recognition of the mind and will of God" (Dialogue with Trypho 68).
The fourth-century apologist Lucius Lactantius expressed matters in the following way:
"Of so much greater antiquity are the prophets found to be than the Greek writers. And I bring forward all these things, that they may perceive their error who endeavour to refute Holy Scripture, as though it were new and recently composed, being ignorant from what fountain the origin of our holy religion flowed. But if any one, having put together arid examined the times, shall duly lay the foundation of learning, and fully ascertain the truth, he will also lay aside his error when he has gained the knowledge of the truth" (The Divine Institutes 4.4.5).
From Clement of Rome:
"Ye are fond of contention, brethren, and full of zeal about things which do not pertain to salvation. Look carefully into the Scriptures, which are the true utterances of the Holy Spirit. Observe that nothing of an unjust or counterfeit character is written in them. There you will not find that the righteous were cast off by men who themselves
were holy. The righteous were indeed persecuted, but only by the wicked. They were cast into prison, but only by the unholy; they were stoned, but only by transgressors; they were slain, but only by the accursed, and such as had conceived an unrighteous envy against them" (1 Clement XLV).