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Against Beron and Helix.

Fragments of a discourse, alphabetically divided,17111711    κατὰ στοιχεῖον.  The Latin title in the version of Anastasius renders it “ex sermone qui est per elementum.” on the Divine Nature17121712    περὶ θεολογίας. and the Incarnation, against the heretics Beron and Helix,17131713    For ῞Ηλικοςthe Codex Regius et Colbertinus of Nicephorus prefers “῝Ηλικίωνος.  Fabricius conjectures that we should read ηλικιωτῶ αἱρετικῶν, so that the title would be, Against Beron and his fellow-heretics.  [N.B. Beron = "Vero".] the beginning of which was in these words, “Holy, holy, holy, Lord God of Sabaoth, with voice never silent the seraphim exclaim and glorify God.”

Fragment I.

By the omnipotent will of God all things are made, and the things that are made are also preserved, being maintained according to their several principles in perfect harmony by Him who is in His nature the omnipotent God and maker of all things,17141714    αὐτῷ τῷΘεῷ. His divine will remaining unalterable by which He has made and moves all things, sustained as they severally are by their own natural laws.17151715    τοῖς ἕκαστα φυσικοις διεξαγόμενα νόμοις. Anastasius makes it naturalibus producta legibus; Capperonnier, suis quæque legibus temperata vel ordinata. For the infinite cannot in any manner or by any account be susceptible of movement, inasmuch as it has nothing towards which and nothing around which it shall be moved. For in the case of that which is in its nature infinite, and so incapable of being moved, movement would be conversion.17161716    τροπὴ γὰρ τοῦ κατὰ φύσιν ἀπείρου, κινεῖσθαι μὴ πεφυκότος , ἡ κίνησις; or may the sense be, “for a change in that which is in its nature infinite would just be the moving of that which is incapable of movement?” Wherefore also the Word of God being made truly man in our manner, yet without sin, and acting and enduring in man’s way such sinless things as are proper to our nature, and assuming the circumscription of the flesh of our nature on our behalf, sustained no conversion in that aspect in which He is one with the Father, being made in no respect one with the flesh through the exinanition.17171717    μηδ᾽ ἑνὶ παντελῶς ὃ ταυτόν ἐστι τῷ Πατρὶ γενόμενος ταυτὸν τῇ σαρκὶ διὰ τὴν κένωσιν. Thus in effect Combefisius, correcting the Latin version of Anastasius.  Baunius adopts the reading in the Greek Codex Nicephori, viz., ἕνωσιν for κένωσιν, and renders it, “In nothing was the Word, who is the same with the Father, made the same with the flesh through the union:” nulla re Verbum quod idem est cum Patre factum est idem cum carne propter unionem. But as He was without flesh,17181718    δίχα σαρκὸς, i.e., what He was before assuming the flesh, that He continued to be in Himself, viz., independent of limitation. He remained without any circumscription. And through the flesh He wrought divinely17191719    θεϊκῶς. those things which are proper to divinity, showing Himself to have both those natures in both of which He wrought, I mean the divine and the human, according to that veritable and real and natural subsistence,17201720    Or existence, ὕπαρξιν.  Anastasius makes it substantia. (showing Himself thus) as both being in reality and as being understood to be at one and the same time infinite God and finite man, having the nature17211721    οὐσίαν. of each in perfection, with the same activity,17221722    ἐνεργείας. that is to say, the same natural properties;17231723    φυσικῆς ἰδιότητος. whence we know that their distinction abides always according to the nature of each, and without conversion. But it is not (i.e., the distinction between deity and humanity), as some say, a merely comparative (or relative) matter,17241724    κατὰ σύγκρισιν.  Migne follows Capperonnier in taking σύγκρισις in this passage to mean not “comparison” or “relation,” but “commixture,” the “concretion and commixture” of the divine and human, which was the error of Apollinaris and Eutyches in their doctrine of the incarnation, and which had been already refuted by Tertullian, Contra Praxeam, c. xxvii. that we may not speak in an unwarrantable manner of a greater and a less in one who is ever the same in Himself.17251725    Or, “for that would be to speak of the same being as greater and less than Himself.” For comparisons can be instituted only between objects of like nature, and not between objects of unlike nature. But between God the Maker of all things and that which is made, between the infinite and the finite, between infinitude and finitude, there can be no kind of comparison, since these differ from each other not in mere comparison (or relatively), but absolutely in essence. And yet at the same time there has been effected a certain inexpressible and irrefragable union of the two into one substance,17261726    υποστασιν. which entirely passes the understanding of anything that is made.  232For the divine is just the same after the incarnation that it was before the incarnation; in its essence infinite, illimitable, impassible, incomparable, unchangeable, inconvertable, self-potent,17271727    αὐτοσθενές. and, in short, subsisting in essence alone the infinitely worthy good.


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