Herrians a heretical sect of the 2nd century, which, according to Augustine, denied baptism by water on the pretence that this was not the kind of baptism instituted by Christ; for John the Baptist, comparing his own baptism with that of our Lord, says, "I baptize you with water; but he that cometh after me shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost and with fire" (Augustine, Dee Haer. c. 59). They affirmed that the souls of men consisted of fire and spirit, and therefore a baptism of fire was more suitable to their nature. Early ecclesiastical writers are not agreed as to what was meant by this expression. Clemens Alexandrinus mentions some who, when they had baptized men in water, also made a mark on their ears with fire, so joining together baptism by water, and, as they imagined, baptism by fire (apud Combefis, Auctarium, 1, 202). Others, by some deceptive art during baptism, made fire to appear on the surface of the water, and confirmed this by a reference to some apocryphal writing of their own invention called "The Preaching of Paul or Peter," in which it was said that, when Christ was baptized, fire appeared on the water. See Bingham, Orig. Eccles. bk. 11, ch. 2, § 3.

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