(also known as DIDACHE) 

   There are two ways, one of life and one of death, and there is a
great difference between the two ways. The way of life is this. First
of all, thou shalt love the God that made thee; secondly, Thy neighbor
as thyself. And all things whatsoever thou wouldst not have befall
thyself, neither do thou unto another. Now of these words the doctrine
is this. Bless them that curse you, and pray for your enemies and fast
for them that persecute you; for what thank is it, if ye love them that
love you? Do not even the Gentiles the same? But do ye love them that
hate you that hate you, and ye shall not have an enemy. Abstain thou
from fleshly and bodily lusts. If any man give thee a blow on thy right
cheek, turn to him the other also, and thou shalt be perfect; If a man
impress thee to go with him one mile, go with him twain; if a man take
away thy cloak, give him thy coat also; if a man take away from thee
that which is thy own, ask it not back, for neither art thou able. To
every man that asketh of thee give, and ask not back for the Father
desireth that gifts be given to all from His own bounties. Blessed is
he that giveth according to the commandment; for he is guiltless. Woe
to him that receiveth; for, if a man receiveth having need, he is
guiltless; but he that hath no need shall give satisfaction why and
wherefore he received and being put in confinement he shall be examined
concerning the deeds that he hath done, and he shall not come out
thence until he hath given back the last farthing. Yea, as touching
this also it is said; Let thine alms sweat into thine hands, until thou
have learnt to whom to give. 

   And this is the second commandment of the teaching. Thou shalt do no
murder, thou shalt not commit adultery, thou shalt not corrupt boys,
thou shalt not commit fornication, thou shalt not steal, thou shalt not
deal in magic, thou shalt do no sorcery, thou shalt not murder a child
by abortion nor kill them when born, thou shalt not covet thy neighbors
goods, thou shalt not perjure thyself, thou shalt not bear false
witness, thou shalt not speak evil, thou shalt not cherish a grudge,
thou shalt not be double-minded nor double-tongued; for the double
tongue is a snare of death. Thy word shall not be false or empty, but
fulfilled by action. Thou shalt not be avaricious nor a plunderer nor a
hypocrite nor ill-tempered nor proud. Thou shalt not entertain an evil
design against thy neighbor. Thou shalt not hate any man but some thou
shalt reprove, and for others thou shalt pray, and others thou shalt
love more than thy life. 

   My child, flee from every evil and everything that resembleth it. Be
not angry, for anger leadeth to murder, nor jealous nor contentious nor
wrathful; for of all these things murders are engendered. My child, be
not lustful, for lust leadeth to fornication, neither foul-speaking
neither with uplifted eyes; for of all these things adulteries are
engendered. My child, be no dealer in omens, since it leads to
idolatry, nor an enchanter nor an astrologer nor a magician, neither be
willing to look at them; for from all these things idolatry is
engendered. My child, be not a liar, since lying leads to theft,
neither avaricious neither vainglorious; for from all these things
thefts are engendered. My child, be not a murmurer, since it leadeth to
blasphemy, neither self-willed neither a thinker of evil thoughts; for
from all these things blasphemies are engendered. But be meek, since
the meek shall inherit the earth. Be long-suffering and pitiful and
guileless and quiet and kindly and always fearing the words which thou
hast heard. Thou shalt not exalt thyself, neither shalt thou admit
boldness into thy soul. Thy soul shall not cleave together with the
lofty, but with the righteous and humble shalt thou walk. The accidents
that befall thee thou shalt receive as good, knowing that nothing is
done without God. 

   My child, thou shalt remember him that speaketh unto thee the word
of God night and day, and shalt honor him as the Lord; for
whencesoever the Lordship speaketh, there is the Lord. Moreover thou
shalt seek out day by day the persons of the saints, that thou mayest
find rest in their words. Thou shalt not make a schism, but thou shalt
pacify them that contend; thou shalt judge righteously, thou shalt not
make a difference in a person to reprove him for transgressions. Thou
shalt not doubt whether a thing shall be or not be. 

   Be not thou found holding out thy hands to receive, but drawing them
in as to giving. If thou hast ought passing through thy hands, thou
shalt give a ransom for thy sins. Thou shalt not hesitate to give,
neither shalt thou murmur when giving; for thou shalt know who is the
good paymaster of thy reward. Thou shalt not turn away from him that is
in want, but shalt make thy brother partaker in all things, and shalt
not say that anything is thy own. For if ye are fellow-partakers in
that which is imperishable, how much rather in the things which are

   Thou shalt not withhold thy hand from thy son or from thy daughter,
but from their youth thou shalt teach them the fear of God. Thou shalt
not command thy bondservant or thine handmaid in thy bitterness who
trust in the same God as thyself, lest haply they should cease to fear
the God who is over both of you; for He cometh, not to call men with
respect of persons, but He cometh to those whom the Spirit hath
prepared. But ye, servants, shall be subject unto your masters, as to a
type of God, in shame and fear. 

   Thou shalt hate all hypocrisy, and everything that is not pleasing
to the Lord. Thou shalt never forsake the commandments of the Lord but
shalt keep those things which thou hast received, neither adding to
them nor taking away from them. In church thou shalt confess thy
transgressions, and shalt not betake thyself to prayer with an evil
conscience. This is the way of life. 

   But the way of death is this. First of all, it is evil and full of a
curse; murders, adulteries, lusts, fornications, thefts, idolatries,
magical arts, witchcrafts, plunderings, false witnessings, hypocrisies,
doubleness of heart, treachery, pride, malice, stubbornness,
covetousness, foul--speaking, jealousy, boldness, exaltation,
boastfulness; persecutors of good men, hating truth, loving a lie, not
perceiving the reward of righteousness, not cleaving to the good nor to
righteous judgment, wakeful not for that which is good but for that
which is evil-from whom gentleness and forbearance stand aloof; loving
vain things, pursuing a recompense, not pitying the poor man, not
toiling for him that is oppressed with toil, not recognizing Him that
made them, murderers of children, corrupters of the creatures of God,
turning away from him that is in want, oppressing him that is
afflicted, advocates of the wealthy, unjust judges of the poor,
altogether sinful. May ye be delivered, my children, from all these

   See lest any man lead you astray from this way of righteousness, for
he teacheth thee apart from God. For if thou art able to bear the whole
yoke of the Lord, thou shalt be perfect; but if thou art not able, do
that which thou art able. 

   But concerning eating, bear that which thou art able; yet abstain by
all means from meat sacrificed to idols; for it is the worship of dead

   But concerning baptism, thus shall ye baptize. Having first recited
all these things, baptize in the name of the Father and of the Son and
of the Holy Spirit in living (running) water. But if thou hast not
living water, then baptize in other water; and if thou art not able in
cold, then in warm. But if thou hast neither, then pour water on the
head thrice in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy
Spirit. But before the baptism let him that baptizeth and him that is
baptized fast, and any others also who are able; and thou shalt order
him that is baptized to fast a day or two before. 

   And let not your fastings be with the hypocrites, for they fast on
the second and the fifth day of the week; but do ye keep your fast on
the fourth and on the preparation (the sixth) day. Neither pray ye as
the hypocrites, but as the Lord commanded in His Gospel, thus pray ye: 

   Our Father, which art in heaven, 
   hallowed be Thy name; 
   Thy kingdom come; 
   Thy will be done, 
      as in heaven, so also on earth; 
   give us this day our daily bread; 
   and forgive us our debt, 
      as we forgive our debtors; 
   and lead us not into temptation, 
      but deliver us from the evil one; 
   for Thine is the power and the glory for ever and ever. 
Three times in the day pray ye so. 

   But as touching the eucharistic thanksgiving give ye thanks thus. 
First, as regards the cup: 

   We give Thee thanks, O our Father, 
   for the holy vine of Thy son David, 
   which Thou madest known unto us 
      through Thy Son Jesus; 
   Thine is the glory for ever and ever. 

Then as regarding the broken bread: 

   We give Thee thanks, O our Father, 
   for the life and knowledge 
   which Thou didst make known unto us 
      through Thy Son Jesus; 
   Thine is the glory for ever and ever. 
   As this broken bread was scattered upon the mountains 
      and being gathered together became one, 
   so may Thy Church be gathered together 
      from the ends of the earth into Thy kingdom; 
   for Thine is the glory and the power 
      through Jesus Christ for ever and ever. 

But let no one eat or drink of this eucharistic thanksgiving, but they
that have been baptized into the name of the Lord; for concerning this
also the Lord hath said: Give not that which is holy to the dogs. 

   And after ye are satisfied thus give ye thanks: 

   We give Thee thanks, Holy Father, 
   for Thy holy name, 
   which Thou hast made to tabernacle in our hearts, 
   and for the knowledge and faith and immortality, 
   which Thou hast made known unto us 
      through Thy Son Jesus; 
   Thine is the glory for ever and ever. 
   Thou, Almighty Master, 
   didst create all things for Thy name's sake, 
   and didst give food and drink unto men for enjoyment, 
   that they might render thanks to Thee; 
   but didst bestow upon us spiritual food and drink and eternal life 
      through Thy Son. 
   Before all things we give Thee thanks 
      that Thou art powerful; 
   Thine is the glory for ever and ever. 
   Remember, Lord, Thy Church 
   to deliver it from all evil 
   and to perfect it in Thy love; 
   and gather it together from the four winds-- 
      even the Church which has been sanctified-- 
      into Thy kingdom which Thou hast prepared for it; 
   for Thine is the power and the glory for ever and ever. 
   May grace come and may this world pass away. 
      Hosanna to the God of David. 
   If any man is holy, let him come; 
      if any man is not, let him repent. 
   Maran Atha. Amen. 

   But permit the prophets to offer thanksgiving as much as they

   Whosoever therefore shall come and teach you all these things that
have been said before, receive him; but if the teacher himself be
perverted and teach a different doctrine to the destruction thereof,
hear him not; but if to the increase of righteousness and the
knowledge of the Lord, receive him as the Lord. 

   But concerning the apostles and prophets, so do ye according to the
ordinance of the Gospel. Let every apostle, when he cometh to you, be
received as the Lord; but he shall not abide more than a single day, or
if there be need, a second likewise; but if he abide three days, he is
a false prophet. And when he departeth let the apostle receive nothing
save bread, until he findeth shelter; but if he ask money, he is a
false prophet. And any prophet speaking in the Spirit ye shall not try
neither discern; for every sin shall be forgiven, but this sin shall
not be forgiven. Yet not every one that speaketh in the Spirit is a
prophet, but only if he have the ways of the Lord. From his ways
therefore the false prophet and the prophet shall be recognized. And no
prophet when he ordereth a table in the Spirit shall eat of it;
otherwise he is a false prophet. And every prophet teaching the truth,
if he doeth not what he teacheth, is a false prophet. And every prophet
approved and found true, if he doeth ought as an outward mystery
typical of the Church, and yet teacheth you not to do all that he
himself doeth, shall not be judged before you; he hath his judgment in
the presence of God; for in like manner also did the prophets of old
time. And whosoever shall say in the Spirit, Give me silver or anything
else, ye shall not listen to him; but if he tell you to give on behalf
of others that are in want, let no man judge him. 

   But let every one that cometh in the name of the Lord be received;
and then when ye have tested him ye shall know him, for ye shall have
understanding on the right hand and on the left. If the comer is a
traveler, assist him, so far as ye are able; but he shall not stay with
you more than two or three days, if it be necessary. But if he wishes
to settle with you, being a craftsman, let him work for and eat his
bread. But if he has no craft, according to your wisdom provide how he
shall live as a Christian among you, but not in idleness. If he will
not do this, he is trafficking upon Christ. Beware of such men. 

   But every time prophet desiring to settle among you is worthy of his
food. In like manner a true teacher is also worthy, like the workman,
of his food. Every firstfruit then of the produce of the wine-vat and
of the threshing-floor, of thy oxen and of thy sheep, thou shalt take
and give as the firstfruit to the prophets; for they are your
chief-priests. But if ye have not a prophet, give them to the poor. If
thou makest bread, take the firstfruit and give according to the
commandment. In like manner, when thou openest a jar of wine or of oil,
take the firstfruit and give to the prophets; yea and of money and
raiment and every possession take the firstfruit, as shall seem good to
thee, and give according to the commandment. 

   And on the Lord's own day gather yourselves together and break bread
and give thanks, first confessing your transgressions, that your
sacrifice may be pure. And let no man, having his dispute with his
fellow, join your assembly until they have been reconciled, that your
sacrifice may not be defiled; for this sacrifice it is that was spoken
of by the Lord; In every place and at every time offer me a pure
sacrifice; for I ama a great king, saith the Lord, and My name is
wonderful among the nations. 

   Appoint for yourselves therefore bishops and deacons worthy of the
Lord, men who are meek and not lovers of money, and true and approved;
for unto you they also perform the service of the prophets and
teachers. Therefore despise them not; for they are your honorable men
along with the prophets and teachers. 

   And reprove one another, not in anger but in peace, as ye find in
the Gospel; and let no one speak to any that has gone wrong towards his
neighbor, neither let him hear a word from you, until he repent. But
your prayers and your almsgiving and all your deeds so do ye as ye find
it in the Gospel of our Lord. 

   Be watchful for your life; let your lamps not be quenched and your
loins not ungirdled, but be ye ready; for ye know not the hour the hour
in which our Lord cometh. And ye shall gather yourselves together
frequently, seeking what is fitting for your souls; for the whole time
of your faith shall not profit you, if ye be not perfected at the last
season. For in the last days the false prophets and corrupters shall be
multiplied, and the sheep shall be turned into wolves, and love shall
be turned into hate. For as lawlessness increaseth, they shall hate one
another and shall persecute and betray. And then the world-deceiver
shall appear as a son of God; and shall work signs and wonders, and the
earth shall be delivered into his hands; and he shall do unholy things,
which have never been since the world began. Then all created mankind
shall come to the fire of testing, and many shall be offended and
perish; but they that endure in their faith shall be saved by the Curse
Himself. And then shall the signs of the truth appear; first a sign of
a rift in the heaven, then a sign of a voice of a trumpet, and thirdly
a resurrection of the dead; yet not of all, but as it was said The Lord
shall come and all His saints with Him. Then shall the world see the
Lord coming upon the clouds of heaven.