Justin continues to argue that Christians should not be persecuted for what they believe, carrying the argument into the pagans’ camp by observing that various people worship “mice and cats and crocodiles,” and tells the Emperor, “you very well know that the same animals are with some esteemed gods, with others wild beasts, and with others sacrificial victims.”  Then he criticized Simon the Samaritan, who a century ago was considered a god by the Samaritans and had a statute built to him in Rome – “to Simon the Holy God” – and Marcion of Pontus, who is accused of teaching his disciples “to believe in some god greater than the Creator.”  Simon is probably the same Simon mentioned in Acts 8:9-24, although the story in Acts doesn’t seem consistent with Justin’s version, and Marcion is certainly the heretic who argued that the Yahweh of the Hebrew Bible and the God of the Christians were not the same god, and further than the only true Scripture was Luke-Acts and 10 epistles.  Considering that Justin had just quoted half of the Sermon on the Mount, and what he quoted had very little overlap with Luke’s Sermon on the Plain, it’s not surprising he considered Marcion to be aided by “the devils.” 


Justin then argues against the practice of exposing children, which surprised us; it’s not something we’ve attributed to the Romans.  He thinks abandoned children are mostly picked up and raised as prostitutes, rather than being left to die.  In this section, he makes reference to “Felix the governor in Alexandria,” either now or a short time ago.  Felix was named as prefect in a surviving Roman document as of 151, which goes a long way toward dating the First Apology.