Irenaeus’ Testimony of the Risen Dead

There is much biblical debate to be had over the continuation or cessation of the miraculous gifts in the present age. It is always interesting, however, when we find testimonies to the fact in history, especially from those of the early church. Here is an interesting testimony from Irenaeus (second century, A.D.), who apparently knew – perhaps first hand – of those practicing the miraculous in he name of Christ. Most interestingly, it seems that Irenaeus knows of some who were raised from the dead and lived among the church afterward.

Wherefore, also, those who are in truth His disciples, receiving grace from Him, do in His name perform [miracles], so as to promote the welfare of other men, according to the gift which each one has received from Him. For some do certainly and truly drive out devils, so that those who have thus been cleansed from evil spirits frequently both believe [in Christ], and join themselves to the Church. Others have foreknowledge of things to come: they see visions, and utter prophetic expressions. Others still, heal the sick by laying their hands upon them, and they are made whole. Yea, moreover, as I have said, the dead even have been raised up, and remained among us for many years. – Against Heresies, II.32.4

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