Early Church Fathers
247 logika, vid. Ep. Aeg. 13 fin.
248 Of course this line of thought consistently followed, leads to a kind of Pantheism; for what is the Supreme Being, according to it, but an ideal standard of perfection, the sum total of all that we see excellent in the world in the highest degree, a creation of our minds, without real objective existence? The true view of our Lord's titles, on the other hand, is that He is That properly and in perfection, of which in measure and degree the creatures partake from and in Him. Vid. supr. de Decr. 17, n. 5.
249 kat' epinoian, in idea or notion. This is a phrase of very frequent occurrence, both in Athan. and other writers. We have found it already just above, and de Syn. 15. Or. i. 9, also Orat. iv. 2, 3. de Sent. D. 2, Ep. Aeg 12, 13, 14. It denotes our idea or conception of a thing in contrast to the thing itself. Thus, the sun is to a savage a bright circle in the sky; a man is a `rational animal,' according to a certain process of abstraction; a herb may be medicine upon one division, food in another; virtue may be called a mean; and faith is to one man an argumentative conclusion, to another a moral peculiarity, good or bad. In like manner, the Almighty is in reality most simple and uncompounded. without parts, passions, attributes, or properties; yet we speak of Him as good or holy, or as angry or pleased, denoting some particular aspect in which our infirmity views, in which also it can view, what is infinite and incomprehensible. That is, He is kat' epinoian holy or merciful, being in reality a Unity which is all mercifulness and also all holiness, not in the way of qualities but as one indivisible perfection; which is too great for us to conceive as It is.
251 The Anomoean in Max. Dial. i. a. urges against the Catholic that, if the Son exists in the Father, God is compound. Athan. here retorts that Asterius speaks of Wisdom as a really existing thing in the Divine Mind. Vid. next note.
252 On this subject rid. Orat. iv. n. 2. Nothing is more remarkable than the confident tone in which Athan. accuses Arians as here, and [Marcellus] in Orat. iv. 2. of considering the Divine Nature as compound, as if the Catholics were in no respect open to such a charge. Nor are they; though in avoiding it, they are led to enunciate the most profound and ineffable mystery. Vid. supr. §33, n. 1. The Father is the One Simple Entire Divine Being, and so is the Son; They do in no sense share divinity between Them; Each is is oloj Qeoj. This is not ditheism or tritheism, for they are the same God; nor is it Sabellianism, for They are eternally distinct and substantive Persons; but it is a depth and height beyond our intellect, how what is Two in so full a sense can also in so full a sense be One, or how the Divine Nature does not come under number. vid. notes on Orat. iii. 27 and 36. Thus, `being uncompounded in nature,' says Athan. `He is Father of One Only Son.' de Decr. 11. In truth the distinction into Persons, as Petavius remarks, `avails especially towards the unity and simplicity of God.' vid. de Deo, ii. 4, 8.
253 Jer. xxiii. 29.
254 Prov. i. 23.
255 Ps. cxix. 101.
256 Joh. vi. 63.
257 John i. 14, John i. 3.
258 Cf. Orat. i. 19, note 5.
259 kataxrwntai, vid. supr. p. 154, note 3.
260 Ib. note 2.
261 Ps. civ. 24.
262 Vid. John xi. 50.
263 Asterius held, 1. that there was an Attribute called Wisdom; 2. that the Son was created by and called after that Attribute; or 1. that Wisdom was ingenerate and eternal, 2. that there were created wisdoms, words, powers many, of which the Son was one.
264 skotodiniwsi, Orat. iii. 42. init.
265 He says that it is contrary to all our notions of religion that Almighty God cannot create, enlighten, address, and unite Himself to His creatures immediately. This seems to be implied in saying that the Son was created for creation, illumination, &c.; whereas in the Catholic view the Son is but that Divine Person who in the Economy of grace is creator, enlightener, &c. God is represented all-perfect but acting according to a certain divine order. This is explained just below. Here the remark is in point about the right and wrong sense of the words `commanding,' `obeying,' &c. supr. §31, note 7.
266 §16, note 7.
267 Supr. p. 162, note 3.
268 Vid. notes on Orat. iii. 1-15. e.g. and 11 and 15.
269 Orat. iii. 15. note.
270 Vid. supr. 33, note 1. and notes on iii. 3-6. `When the Father is mentioned, His Word is with Him, and the Spirit who is in the Son. And if the Son be named, in the Son is the Father, and the Spirit is not external to the Word.' ad Serap. i. 14. and vid. Hil. Trin. vii. 31. Passages like these are distinct from such as the one quoted from Athan. supr. p. 76, note 3, where it is said that in `Father' is implied `Son,' i.e. argumentatively as a correlative. vid. Sent. D. 17. de Decr. 19, n. 6. The latter accordingly Eusebius does not scruple to admit in Sabell. i. ap. Sirm t. i. p. 8, a. `Pater statim, ut dictus fuit pater, requirit ista vox filium, &c.;' for here no perixwrhsij is implied, which is the doctrine of the text, and is not the doctrine of an Arian who considered the Son an instrument. Yet Petavius observes as to the very word perix. that one of its first senses in ecclesiastical writers was this which Arians would not disclaim; its use to express the Catholic doctrine here spoken of was later. vid. de Trin. iv. 16.
271 Vid. John xiv. 23, and John xvii. 21; Rom. i. 7, &c.
272 Bar. iii. 12.
273 1 Cor. i. 24.
274 John xix. 15.
275 De Decr. 31; Or. i. 34.
276 The prima facie sense of this passage is certainly unfavourable to the validity of heretical baptism; rid. Coust. Pont. Rom. Ep. p. 227. Voss. de Bapt. Disp. 19 and 20. Forbes Instruct. Theol. x. 2, 3, and 12. Hooker's Eccl. Pol. v. 62. §5-11. On Arian Baptism in particular vid. Jablonski's Diss. Opusc. t. iv. p. 113. [And, in violent contrast to Athan., Siricius (bishop of Rome) letter to Himerius, a.d. 385. (Coust. 623.)]
277 thn p. ugiainousan. Dep. Ar. 5, note 6.
278 rantizomenon, Bingh. Antiqu. xi. 11. §5.
279 Cf. Cyprian, Ep. 76 fin. (ed. Ben.) and Ep. 71 cir. init. Optatus ad Parmen. i. 12.
280 aqeothtoj. vid. supr. de Decr. 1, note 1, Or. i. 4, note 1. `Atheist' or rather `godless' was the title given by pagans to those who denied, and by the Fathers to those who protessed, polytheism. Thus Julian says that Christians preferred `atheism to godliness.' vid. Suicer Thes. in voc.
282 periferousi, §34. n. 5.
283 Instead of provisions.
284 Cf. Ep. Aeg. 19. Hist. Ar. 66. and so Arians are dogs (with allusion to 2 Pet. ii. 22.), de Decr. 4. Hist. Ar. 29. lions, Hist. Ar. 11. wolves, Ap. c. Arian. 49. hares, de Fug. 10. chameleons, de Decr. init. hydras, Orat. iii. 58 fin. eels, Ep. Aeg. 7 fin. cuttlefish, Orat. iii. 59. gnats, de Decr. 14 init Orat. iii. 59. init. beetles, Orat. iii. fin. leeches, Hist. Ar. 65 init. de Fug. 4. [swine, Or. ii. 1.] In many of these instances the allusion is to Scripture. On names given to heretics in general, vid. the Alphabetum bestialitatis hereticae ex Patrum Symbolis, in the Calvinismus bestiarum religio attributed to Raynaudus and printed in the Apopompaeus of his works. Vid. on the principle of such applications infr. Orat. iii. 18.
285 Orat. i. 9.
286 Orat. iii. 4. note.
287 kalwj anaginwskein. ...orqhn exon thn dianoian, i.e. the text admits of an interpretation consistent with the analogy of faith, and so met' eusebeiaj just below. vid. §1. n. 13. Such phrases are frequent in Athan.
288 Prov. viii. 22. Athanasius follows the Sept. rendering of the Hebrew Qanâ. by ektise. The Hebrew sense is appealed to by Eusebius, Eccles. Theol. iii. 2, 3. S. Epiphanius, Hoer. 69. 25. and S. Jerome in Isai. 26. 13. Cf. Bas. c. Eun. ii. 20, and Greg. Nyss. c. Eun. 1. p. 34.
289 This passage of Athan. has been used by many later fathers.
290 John xvi. 25.
291 Here, as in so many other places, he is explaining what is obscure or latent in Scripture by means of the Regula Fidei. Cf. Vincentius, Commonit. 2. Vid. especially the first sentence of the following paragraph, ti dei noein k.t.l. vid. supr. note 1.
292 Prov. ix. 1.
293 Ut intra intemerata viscera aedificante sibi Sapientia domum, Verbum caro fieret. Leon. Ep. 31, 2. Didym. de Trin. iii. 3. p. 337. (ed. 1769.) August. Civ. D. xvii 20. Cyril in Joann. p. 384, 5. Max. Dial. iii. p. 1029. (ap. Theodor. ed. Schutz.) vid. supr. Or. i. 11, note 8. Hence S. Clement. Alex. o logoj eauton genna. Strom. v. 3.
294 John i. 14.
295 §12, n. 4.
296 The passage is in like manner interpreted of our Lord's human nature by Epiph. Hoer. 69, 20-25. Basil. Ep. viii. 8. Naz. Orat. 30, z. Nyss. contr. Eunom. i. p. 34. et al. Cyril. Thesaur. p. 154. Hilar. de Trin. xii. 36-49. Ambros. de Fid. i. August. de Fid. et Symb. 6.
297 He seems here to say that it is both true that `The Lord created,' and yet that the Son was not created. Creatures alone are created, and He was not a creature. Rather something belonging or relating to Him, something short of His substance or nature, was created. However, it is a question in controversy whether even His Manhood can be called a creature, though many of the Fathers (including Athan. in several places) seem so to call it. On the whole it would appear, (1.) that if `creature,' like `Son,' be a personal term, He is not a creature; but if it be a word of nature, He is a creature; (2.) that our Lord is a creature in respect to the flesh (vid. infr. 47); (3.) that since the flesh is infinitely beneath His divinity, it is neither natural nor safe to call-Him a creature (cf. Thom. A. Sum. Th. iii. xvi. 8, `non dicimus, quod Aethiops est albus, sed quod est albus secundum dentes') and (4.) that, if the flesh is worshipped, still it is worshipped as in the Person of the Son, not by a separate act of worship. Cf. infr. Letter 60. ad Adelph. 3. Epiph. has imitated this passage, Ancor. 51. introducing the illustration of a king and his robe, &c.
298 to legomenon ktizesqai th fusei kai th ousia ktisma. also infr. 60. Without meaning that the respective terms are synonymous, is it not plain that in a later phraseology this would have been, `not simply that He is in His Person a creature,' or `that His Person is created?' Athan.'s use of the phrase ousia tou logou has already been noticed, supr. i. 45, and passages from this Oration are given in another connexion, supr. p. 70, note 15. The term is synonymous with the Divine Nature as existing in the Person of the Word. [Cf. Prolegg. ch. ii. §3 (2) b.] In the passage in the text the ousia of the Word is contrasted to the ousia of creatures; and it is observable that it is implied that our Lord has not taken on Him a created ousia. 'He said not, Athan. remarks, `I became a creature, for the creatures have a created essence;' he adds that `He created' signifies, not essence, but something taking place in Him peri ekeinon, i.e. some adjunct or accident (e.g. notes on de Decr. 22), or as he says supr. §8, envelopment or dress. And infr. §51, he contrasts the ousia and the anqrwpinon of the Word; as in Orat. i. 41. ousia and h anqrwpothj; and fusij and sarc, iii. 34. init. and logoj and sarc, 38. init. And He speaks of the Son `taking on Him the economy,' infr. 76, and of the upostasij.tou logou being one with o anqrwpoj, iv. 25, c. It is observed, §8, note, how this line of teaching might be wrested to the purposes of the Apollinarian and Eutychian heresies; and, considering Athan.'s most emphatic protests against their errors in his later works, as well as his strong statements in Orat. iii. there is ho hazard in this admission. His ordinary use of anqrwpoj for the manhood might quite as plausibly be perverted on the other hand into a defence of Nestorianism. Vid. also the Ed. Ben. on S. Hilary, praef. p. xliii. who uses natura absolutely for our Lord's Divinity, as contrasted to the dispensatio, and divides His titles into naturalia and assumpta.
299 Ps. civ. 24. LXX.; Rom viii. 22.
300 Rev. viii. 9; 1 Tim. iv. 4.
301 Wisd. ix. 2.
302 Matt. xix. 4. (o ktisaj).
303 Deut. iv. 32.
304 Col. i. 15-17.
305 Ps. cii. 18. LXX.
306 Ps. li. 12.
307 Eph. ii. 15.
308 Eph. iv. 22; vid. Cyr. Thes. p. 156.
309 Jer. xxxi. 22. vid. also supr. p. 85, where he notices that this is the version of the Septuagint, Aquila's being `The Lord created a new thing in woman.' Athan. has preserved Aquila's version in three other places, in Psalm xxx. 12. Psalm lix. 5. Psalm lxv. 18.
310 Prov. ix. 1.
311 John i. 14.
312 §10. n. 6.
313 Gal. iii. 13; 2 Cor. v. 21.
314 Gal. iii. 13; Is. liii. 4; 1 Pet. ii. 24.
315 Here he says that, though our Lord's flesh is created or He is created as to the flesh, it is not right to call Him a creature. This is very much what S. Thomas says, as referred to in §45, note 1, in the words of the Schools, that Aethiops, albus secundum dentes, non est albns. But why may not our Lord be so called upon the principle of the communicatio Idiomatum (infr. note on iii. 31.) as He is said to be born of a Virgin, to have suffered, &c.? The reason is this:-birth, passion, &c., confessedly belong to His human nature, without adding `according to the flesh;' but `creature' not implying humanity. might appear a simple attribute of His Person, if used without limitation. Thus, as S. Thomas adds, though we may not absolutely say Aethiops est albus, we may say `crispus est,' or in like manner, `calvus est.' Since crispus, or calvus, can but refer to the hair. Still more does this remark apply in the case of `Sonship,' which is a personal attribute altogether; as is proved, says Petav. de Incarn. vii. 6 fin. by the instance of Adam, who was in all respects a man like Seth, yet not a son. Accordingly, we may not call our Lord, even according to the manhood, an adopted Son.
316 pompeuete, infr. 82.
317 arxhn odwn: and so in Justin's Tryph. 61. The Bened. Ed. in loc. refers to a similar application of the word to our Lord in Tatian contr. Gent. 5. Athenag. Ap. 10. Iren. Hoer. iv. 20. n. 3. Origen. in Joan. tom. 1. 39. Tertull. adv. Prax. 6. and Ambros. de Fid. iii. 7.
318 arxh teknwn, Gen. xlix. 3.
319 Cf. p. 157, note 7.
320 Rom. i. 20.
321 Vid. Col. i. 16.
322 i. 61; ii. 27.
323 He says that, though none could be `a beginning' of creation, who was a creature, yet still that such a title belongs not to His essence. It is the name of an office which the Eternal Word alone can fill. His Divine Sonship is both superior and necessary to that office of a `Beginning.' Hence it is both true (as he says) that `if the Word is a creature, He is not a beginning;' and yet that that `beginning' is `in the number of the creatures.' Though He becomes the `beginning,' He is not `a beginning as to His essence,' vid. supr. i. 49, and infr. §60. where he says, `He who is before all, cannot be a beginning of all, but is other than all,' which implies that the beginning of all is not other than all. vid. §8, note 4, on the Priesthood, and §16, n. 7.
324 Ps. lxxxix, 6.
325 Bar. iii. 35.
326 Vid. Prov. iii. 19; Prov. ix. 1.
327 Matt. xi. 25.
328 to ktiston, i.e. swma, §47.
329 Ps lxxxvi. 16.
330 Ps. c. 3.