"Reason dictates that those who are truly pious and philosophers should honor and love only the truth, declining to follow the opinions of the ancients, if they are worthless. For not only does sound reason dictate that one should not follow those who do or teach unjust things, but the lover of truth should choose by all means, and even before his own life, even though death should remove him, to speak and do righteous things. So you, then, since you are called pious and philosophers and guardians of justice and lovers of culture, listen in every way; and it will be shown if you are such. For we have come into your company not to flatter you by this writing, nor please you by our address, but to ask that you give judgment, after an exact and searching inquiry, not moved by prejudice or by a wish to please superstitious people, nor by irrational impulse or long prevalent rumors, so as to give a decision which will prove to be against yourselves. For we indeed reckon that no evil can be done to us, unless we are proved to be evildoers, or shown to be wicked. You are able to kill us, but not to hurt us."
- Justin Martyr,First Apology (defense of Christianity to the Roman government), paragraph 2, ca. 150-155 A.D., translated from the Greek by Leslie William Barnard, Early Christian Writers Series, Paulist Press.