Ante-Nicene Fathers/Volume V/Cyprian/The Seventh Council of Carthage under Cyprian/Elucidation
(To them we have succeeded, p. 572.)
The theory of Cyprian is thus recognised in full council, by his colleagues, with respect to the unity of the Church Catholic. They have never heard of any counter theory, and they state it as a matter of course. Fortunatus of “Tuccaboris” had shortly before referred to the Church as “built upon a rock,” with evident reference to the faith, for he adds, “not upon heresy.” Of a perpetuated construction, of which any one bishop was the perpetuated foundation, nobody as yet seems to have dreamed. “Other foundation can no man lay than that is laid,” says St. Paul; viz., “Christ.” On Him, “the Stone, Elect, precious,” St. Peter and all the apostles (the prophets as well) are built as foundation-stones; and we also, as “lively stones,” are built upon that foundation, into a holy temple.
This Council of Carthage sustains Cyprian also in his judgment concerning the question of baptism, and it is a mistake to say that it was ever overruled. Compare St. Basil, Ad Amphilochium (Epist. Canonica prima, p. 19, vol. iii., ed. Paris, 1638), where he refers to Cyprian and Firmilian (“our Firmilian”) as “ancient men,” and treats the question as still an open one.
- See p. 522, sec. 16, supra. All this interprets the Petra, not “Petrus.”