But that’s the way it was, and this type of head-in-the-sand “I’ll believe any church father over modern historians,” has led to more confusion in church history than most people realize.
Another commenter related that Eusebius had not only passed along a mythical letter that Jesus had written during his lifetime to a Persian king named “Abgar”, but which was, according to Eusebius, “available, taken from the Record Office at Edessa.” That means that anyone who had access to the “record office at Edessa” (no small city at the time) would have found this fictitious letter to be presented as “the official record”. This was only one of many such instances.
For those who are inclined to believe that the "early church fathers" were a pure and holy group, not ever given to lying or even fudging, consider this, which I've written about in the past. Samuel Hugh Moffett, writing in "A History of Christianity in Asia," describes the events at the Council of Ephesus:
"On Easter Sunday in 429, Cyril publicly denounced Nestorius for heresy. With fine disregard for anything Nestorius had actually said, he accused him of denying the deity of Christ. It was a direct and incendiary appeal to the emotions of the orthodox, rather than to precise theological definition or scriptural exegesis, and, as he expected, an ecclesiastical uproar followed. Cyril showered Nestorius with twelve bristling anathemas...As tempers mounted, a Third Ecumenical Council was summoned to meet in Ephesus in 431 ... [it was] the most violent and least equitable of all the great councils. It is an embarrassment and blot on the history of the church. ... Nestorius ... arrived late and was asking the council to wait for him and his bishops. Cyril, who had brought fifty of his own bishops with him, arrogantly opened the council anyway, over the protests of the imperial commissioner and about seventy other bishops. ... "They acted ... as if it was a war they were conducting, and the followers of [Cyril] ... went about in the city girt and armed with clubs ... with the yells of barbarians, snorting fiercely ... raging with extravagant arrogance against those whom they knew to be opposed to their doings, carrying bells about the city and lighting fires. They blocked up the streets so that everyone was obliged to fee and hide, while they acted as masters of the situation, lying about, drunk and besotted and shouting obsceneties... (Moffet 174).For more information, see also:
Philip Jenkins: The Lost History of Christianity
Mar Bawai Soro: The Church of the East: Apostolic and Orthodox