Nicene and Ante-Nicene Fathers, Ser. II, Vol. VII:Early Church Fathers Index Previous Next
The Catechetical Lectures of S. Cyril.: On the Clause, and in One Lord Jesus Christ, with a Reading from the First Epistle to the Corinthians.
p. 57 Lecture X.
On the Clause, and in One Lord Jesus Christ, with a Reading from the 1 Cor. 8:5, 6
For though there be that are called gods, whether in heaven or on earth 1114 ; yet to us there is One God, the Father, of whom are all things, and we in Him; and One Lord Jesus Christ, through whom are all things, and we through Him.
1. They who have been taught to believe “In One God the Father Almighty,” ought also to believe in His Only-begotten Son. For he that denieth the Son, the same hath not the Father 1115 . I am the Door 1116 , saith Jesus; no one cometh unto the Father but through Me 1117 . For if thou deny the Door, the knowledge concerning the Father is shut off from thee. No man knoweth the father, save the Son, and he to whomsoever the Son shall reveal Him 1118 . For if thou deny Him who reveals, thou remainest in ignorance. There is a sentence in the Gospels, saying, He that believeth not on the Son, shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him. 1119 For the Father hath indignation when the Only-begotten Son is set at nought. For it is grievous to a king that merely his soldier should be dishonoured; and when one of his nobler officers or friends is dishonoured, then his anger is greatly increased: but if any should do despite to the kings only-begotten son himself, who shall appease the fathers indignation on behalf of his only-begotten son?
2. If, therefore, any one wishes to shew piety towards God, let him worship the Son, since otherwise the Father accepts not his service. The Father spake with a loud voice from heaven, saying, This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased 1120 . The Father was well pleased; unless thou also be well pleased in Him, thou hast not life. Be not thou carried away with the Jews when they craftily say, There is one God alone; but with the knowledge that God is One, know that there is also an Only-begotten Son of God. I am not the first to say this, but the Psalmist in the person of the Son saith, The Lord said unto Me, Thou art My Son 1121 . Heed not therefore what the Jews say, but what the Prophets say. Dost thou wonder that they who stoned and slew the Prophets, set at nought the Prophets words?
3. Believe thou In One Lord Jesus Christ, the Only-Begotten Son of God. For we say “One Lord Jesus Christ,” that His Sonship may be “Only-begotten:” we say “One,” that thou mayest not suppose another: we say “One,” that thou mayest not profanely diffuse the many names 1122 of His action among many sons. For He is called a Door 1123 ; but take not the name literally for a thing of wood, but a spiritual, a living Door, discriminating those who enter in. He is called a Way 1124 , not one trodden by feet, but leading to the Father in heaven; He is called a Sheep 1125 , not an irrational one, but the one which through its precious blood cleanses the world from its sins, which is led before the shearers, and knows when to be silent. This Sheep again is called a Shepherd, who says, I am the Good Shepherd 1126 : a Sheep because of His manhood, a Shepherd because of the loving-kindness of His Godhead. And wouldst thou know that there are rational sheep? the Saviour says to the Apostles, Behold, I send you as sheep in the midst of wolves 1127 . Again, He is called a Lion 1128 , not as a devourer of men, but indicating as it were by the title His kingly, and stedfast, and confident nature: a Lion He is also called in opposition to the lion our adverp. 58 sary, who roars and devours those who have been deceived 1129 . For the Saviour came, not as having changed the gentleness of His own nature, but as the strong Lion of the tribe of Judah 1130 , saving them that believe, but treading down the adversary. He is called a Stone, not a lifeless stone, cut out by mens hands, but a chief corner-stone 1131 , on whom whosoever believeth shall not be put to shame.
4. He is called Christ, not as having been anointed by mens hands, but eternally anointed by the Father to His High-Priesthood on behalf of men 1132 . He is called Dead, not as having abode among the dead, as all in Hades, but as being alone free among the dead 1133 . He is called Son of Man, not as having had His generation from earth, as each of us, but as coming upon the clouds To Judge Both Quick and Dead 1134 . He is called Lord, not improperly as those who are so called among men, but as having a natural and eternal Lordship 1135 . He is called Jesus by a fitting name, as having the appellation from His salutary healing. He is called Son, not as advanced by adoption, but as naturally begotten. And many are the titles of our Saviour; lest, therefore, His manifold appellations should make thee think of many sons, and because of the errors of the heretics, who say that Christ is one, and Jesus another, and the Door another, and so on 1136 , the Faith secures thee beforehand, saying well, In One Lord Jesus Christ: for though the titles are many, yet their subject is one.
5. But the Saviour comes in various forms to each man for his profit 1137 . For to those who have need of gladness He becomes a Vine; and to those who want to enter in He stands as a Door; and to those who need to offer up their prayers He stands a mediating High Priest. Again, to those who have sins He becomes a Sheep, that He may be sacrificed for them. He is made all things to all men 1138 , remaining in His own nature what He is. For so remaining, and holding the dignity of His Sonship in reality unchangeable, He adapts Himself to our infirmities, just as some excellent physician or compassionate teacher; though He is Very Lord, and received not the Lordship by advancement 1139 , but has the dignity of His Lordship from nature, and is not called Lord improperly 1140 , as we are, but is so in verity, since by the Fathers bidding 1141 He is Lord of His own works. For our lordship is over men of equal rights and like passions, nay often over our elders, and often a young master rules over aged servants. But in the case of our Lord Jesus Christ the Lordship is not so: but He is first Maker, then Lord 1142 : first He made all things by the Fathers will, then, He is Lord of the things which were made by Him.
6. Christ the Lord is He who was born in the city of David 1143 . And wouldest thou know p. 59 that Christ is Lord with the Father even before His Incarnation 1144 , that thou mayest not only accept the statement by faith, but mayest also receive proof from the Old Testament? Go to the first book, Genesis: God saith, Let us make man, not in My image, but, in Our image 1145 . And after Adam was made, the sacred writer says, And God created man; in the image of God created He him 1146 . For he did not limit the dignity of the Godhead to the Father alone, but included the Son also: that it might be shewn that man is not only the work of God, but also of our Lord Jesus Christ, who is Himself also Very God. This Lord, who works together with the Father, wrought with Him also in the case of Sodom, according to the Scripture: And the Lord rained upon Sodom and Gomorrah fire and brimstone from the Lord out of heaven 1147 . This Lord is He who afterwards was seen of Moses, as much as he was able to see. For the Lord is loving unto man, ever condescending to our infirmities.
7. Moreover, that you may be sure that this is He who was seen of Moses, hear Pauls testimony, when he says, For they all drank of a spiritual rock that followed them; and the rock was Christ 1148 . And again: By faith Moses forsook Egypt 1149 , and shortly after he says, accounting the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures in Egypt 1150 . This Moses says to Him, Shew me Thyself. Thou seest that the Prophets also in those times saw the Christ, that is, as far as each was able. Shew me Thyself, that I may see Thee with understanding 1151 . But He saith, There shall no man see My face, and live 1152 . For this reason then, because no man could see the face of the Godhead and live, He took on Him the face of human nature, that we might see this and live. And yet when He wished to shew even that with a little majesty, when His face did shine as the sun 1153 , the disciples fell down affrighted. If then His bodily countenance, shining not in the full power of Him that wrought, but according to the capacity of the Disciples, affrighted them, so that even thus they could not bear it, how could any man gaze upon the majesty of the Godhead? A great thing, saith the Lord, thou desirest, O Moses: and I approve thine insatiable desire, and I will do this thing 1154 for thee, but according as thou art able. Behold, I will put thee in the clift of the rock 1155 : for as being little, thou shalt lodge in a little space.
8. Now here I wish you to make safe what I am going to say, because of the Jews. For our object is to prove that the Lord Jesus Christ was with the Father. The Lord then says to Moses, I will pass by before thee with My glory, and will proclaim the name of the Lord before thee 1156 . Being Himself the Lord, what Lord doth He proclaim? Thou seest how He was covertly teaching the godly doctrine of the Father and the Son. And again, in what follows it is written word for word: And the Lord descended in the cloud, and stood with him there, and proclaimed the name of the Lord. And the Lord passed by before him, and proclaimed, The Lord, the Lord God, merciful and gracious, long-suffering, and abundant in goodness and truth, both keeping righteousness and shewing mercy unto thousands, taking away iniquities, and transgressions, and sins 1157 . Then in what follows, Moses bowed his head and worshipped 1158 before the Lord who proclaimed the Father, and said: Go Thou then, O Lord, in the midst of us 1159 .
9. This is the first proof: receive now a second plain one. The Lord said unto my Lord, sit Thou on My right hand 1160 . The Lord says this to the Lord, not to a servant, but to the Lord of all, and His own Son, to whom He put all things in subjection. But when He saith that all things are put under Him, it is manifest that He is excepted, which did put all things under Him, and what follows; that God may be all in all 1161 . The Only-begotten Son is Lord of all, but the obedient Son of the Father, for He grasped not the Lordship 1162 , but received it by nature of the Fathers own will. For neither did the Son grasp it, nor the Father grudge to impart it. He it is who saith, All things are delivered unto Me of My Father 1163 ; “delivered unto Me, not as though p. 60 I had them not before; and I keep them well, not robbing Him who hath given them.”
10. The Son of God then is Lord: He is Lord, who was born in Bethlehem of Judæa, according to the Angel who said to the shepherds, I bring you good tidings of great joy, that unto you is born this day in the city of David Christ the Lord 1164 : of whom an Apostle says elsewhere, The word which God sent unto the children of Israel, preaching the gospel of peace by Jesus Christ: He is Lord of all 1165 . But when he says, of all, do thou except nothing from His Lordship: for whether Angels, or Archangels, or principalities, or powers, or any created thing named by the Apostles, all are under the Lordship of the Son. Of Angels He is Lord, as thou hast it in the Gospels, Then the Devil departed from Him, and the Angels came and ministered unto Him 1166 ; for the Scripture saith not, they succoured Him, but they ministered unto Him, that is, like servants. When He was about to be born of a Virgin, Gabriel was then His servant, having received His service as a peculiar dignity. When He was about to go into Egypt, that He might overthrow the gods of Egypt made with hands 1167 , again an Angel appeareth to Joseph in a dream 1168 . After He had been crucified, and had risen again, an Angel brought the good tidings, and as a trustworthy servant said to the women, Go, tell His disciples that He is risen, and goeth before you into Galilee; lo, I have told you 1169 : almost as if he had said, “I have not neglected my command, I protest that I have told you; that if ye disregard it, the blame may not be on me, but on those who disregard it.” This then is the One Lord Jesus Christ, of whom the lesson just now read speaks: For though there be many that are called gods, whether in heaven or in earth, and so on, yet to us there is One God, the Father, of whom are all things, and we in Him; and One Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom are all things, and we through Him 1170 .
11. And He is called by two names, Jesus Christ; Jesus, because He saves,—Christ, because He is a Priest 1171 . And knowing this the inspired Prophet Moses conferred these two titles on two men distinguished above all 1172 : his own successor in the government, Auses 1173 , he renamed Jesus; and his own brother Aaron he surnamed Christ 1174 , that by two well-approved men he might represent at once both the High Priesthood, and the Kingship of the One Jesus Christ who was to come. For Christ is a High Priest like Aaron; since He glorified not Himself to be made a High Priest, but He that spake unto Him, Thou art a Priest for ever after the order of Melchizedek 1175 . And Jesus the son of Nave was in many things a type of Him. For when he began to rule over the people, he began from Jordan 1176 , whence Christ also, after He was baptized, began to preach the gospel. And the son of Nave appoints twelve to divide the inheritance 1177 ; and twelve Apostles Jesus sends forth, as heralds of the truth, into all the world. The typical Jesus saved Rahab the harlot when she believed: and the true Jesus says, Behold, the publicans and the harlots go before you into the kingdom of God 1178 . With only a shout the walls of Jericho fell down in the time of the type: and because Jesus said, There shall not be left here one stone upon another 1179 , the Temple of the Jews opposite to us is fallen, the cause of its fall not being the denunciation but the sin of the transgressors.
12. There is One Lord Jesus Christ, a wondrous name, indirectly announced beforehand by the Prophets. For Esaias the Prophet says, Behold, thy Saviour cometh, having His own reward 1180 . Now Jesus in Hebrew is by interpretation Saviour. For the Prophetic gift, foreseeing the murderous spirit of the Jews against their Lord 1181 , veiled His name, lest from knowing it plainly beforehand they might plot against Him readily. But He was openly called Jesus not by men, but by an Angel, who came not by his own authority, but was sent by the power of God, and said to Joseph, Fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife; for that which is conp. 61 ceivedin her is of the Holy Ghost. And she shall bring forth a Son, and thou shalt call His name Jesus 1182 . And immediately he renders the reason of this name, saying, for He shall save His people from their sins. Consider how He who was not yet born could have a people, unless He was in being before He was born 1183 . This also the Prophet says in His person, From the bowels of my mother hath He made mention of My name 1184 ; because the Angel foretold that He should be called Jesus. And again concerning Herods plot again he says, And under the shadow of His hand hath He hid Me 1185 .
13. Jesus then means according to the Hebrew “Saviour,” but in the Greek tongue “The Healer;” since He is physician of souls and bodies, curer of spirits, curing the blind in body 1186 , and leading minds into light, healing the visibly lame, and guiding sinners steps to repentance, saying to the palsied, Sin no more, and, Take up thy bed and walk 1187 . For since the body was palsied for the sin of the soul, He ministered first to the soul that He might extend the healing to the body. If, therefore, any one is suffering in soul from sins, there is the Physician for him: and if any one here is of little faith, let him say to Him, Help Thou mine unbelief 1188 . If any is encompassed also with bodily ailments, let him not be faithless, but let him draw nigh; for to such diseases also Jesus ministers 1189 , and let him learn that Jesus is the Christ.
14. For that He is Jesus the Jews allow, but not further that He is Christ. Therefore saith the Apostle, Who is the liar, but he that denieth that Jesus is the Christ 1190 ? But Christ is a High Priest, whose priesthood passes not to another 1191 , neither having begun His Priesthood in time 1192 , nor having any successor in His High-Priesthood: as thou heardest on the Lords day, when we were discoursing in the congregation 1193 on the phrase, After the Order of Melchizedek. He received not the High-Priesthood from bodily succession, nor was He anointed with oil prepared by man 1194 , but before all ages by the Father; and He so far excels the others as with an oath He is made Priest: For they are priests without an oath, but He with an oath by Him that said, The Lord sware, and will not repent 1195 . The mere purpose of the Father was sufficient for surety: but the mode of assurance is twofold, namely that with the purpose there follows the oath also, that by two immutable things, in which it was impossible for God to lie, we might have strong encouragement 1196 for our faith, who receive Christ Jesus as the Son of God.
15. This Christ, when He was come, the Jews denied, but the devils confessed. But His forefather David was not ignorant of Him, when he said, I have ordained a lamp for mine Anointed 1197 : which lamp some have interpreted to be the brightness of Prophecy 1198 , others the flesh which He took upon Him from the Virgin, according to the Apostles word, But we have this treasure in earthen vessels 1199 . The Prophet was not ignorant of Him, when He said, and announceth unto men His Christ 1200 . Moses also knew Him, Isaiah knew Him, and Jeremiah; not one of the Prophets was ignorant of Him. Even devils recognised Him, for He rebuked them, and the Scripture says, because they knew that He was Christ 1201 . The Chief-priests knew Him not, and the devils confessed Him: the Chief Priests knew Him not, and a woman of Samaria proclaimed Him, saying, Come, see a man which told me all things that ever I did. Is not this the Christ 1202 ?
16. This is Jesus Christ who came a High-Priest of the good things to come 1203 ; who for the bountifulness of His Godhead imparted His own title to us all. For kings among men have their royal style which others may not share: but Jesus Christ being the Son of God gave us the dignity of being called Christians. But some one will say, The name of “Christians” is new, and was not in use aforetime 1204 : and new-fashioned phrases are often objected to p. 62 on the score of strangeness 1205 . The prophet made this point safe beforehand, saying, But upon My servants shall a new name be called, which shall be blessed upon the earth 1206 . Let us question the Jews: Are ye servants of the Lord, or not? Shew then your new name. For ye were called Jews and Israelites in the time of Moses, and the other prophets, and after the return from Babylon, and up to the present time: where then is your new name? But we, since we are servants of the Lord, have that new name: new indeed, but the new name, which shall be blessed upon the earth. This name caught the world in its grasp: for Jews are only in a certain region, but Christians reach to the ends of the world: for it is the name of the Only-begotten Son of God that is proclaimed.
17. But wouldest thou know that the Apostles knew and preached the name of Christ, or rather had Christ Himself within them? Paul says to his hearers, Or seek ye a proof of Christ that speaketh in me 1207 ? Paul proclaims Christ, saying, For we preach not ourselves, but Christ Jesus as Lord, and ourselves your servants for Jesus sake 1208 . Who then is this? The former persecutor. O mighty wonder! The former persecutor himself preaches Christ. But wherefore? Was he bribed? Nay there was none to use this mode of persuasion. But was it that he saw Him present on earth, and was abashed? He had already been taken up into heaven. He went forth to persecute, and after three days the persecutor is a preacher in Damascus. By what power? Others call friends as witnesses for friends but I have presented to you as a witness the former enemy: and dost thou still doubt? The testimony of Peter and John, though weighty, was yet of a kind open to suspicion: for they were His friends. But of one who was formerly his enemy, and afterwards dies for His sake, who can any longer doubt the truth?
18. At this point of my discourse I am truly filled with wonder at the wise dispensation of the Holy Spirit; how He confined the Epistles of the rest to a small number, but to Paul the former persecutor gave the privilege of writing fourteen. For it was not because Peter or John was less that He restrained the gift; God forbid! But in order that the doctrine might be beyond question, He granted to the former enemy and persecutor the privilege of writing more, in order that we all might thus be made believers. For all were amazed at Paul, and said, Is not this he that was formerly a persecutor 1209 ? Did he not come hither, that he might lead us away bound to Jerusalem? Be not amazed, said Paul, I know that it is hard for me to kick against the pricks: I know that I am not worthy to be called an Apostle, because I persecuted the Church of God 1210 ; but I did it in ignorance 1211 : for I thought that the preaching of Christ was destruction of the Law, and knew not that He came Himself to fulfil the Law and not to destroy it 1212 . But the grace of God was exceeding abundant in me 1213 .
19. Many, my beloved, are the true testimonies concerning Christ. The Father bears witness from heaven of His Son: the Holy Ghost bears witness, descending bodily in likeness of a dove: the Archangel Gabriel bears witness, bringing good tidings to Mary: the Virgin Mother of God 1214 bears witness: the blessed place of the manger bears witness. Egypt bears witness, which received the Lord while yet young in the body 1215 : Symeon bears witness, who received Him in his arms, and said, Now, Lord, lettest Thou Thy servant depart in peace, according to Thy word; for mine eyes have seen Thy salvation, which Thou hast prepared before the face of all people 1216 . Anna also, the prophetess, a most devout widow, of austere life, bears witness of Him. John the Baptist bears witness, the greatest among the Prophets, and leader of the New Covenant, who in a manner united both Covenants in Himself, the Old and the New. Jordan is His witness among rivers; the sea of Tiberias among seas: blind and lame bear witness, and dead men raised to life, and devils saying, What have we to do with Thee, Jesus? we know Thee, who Thou art, the Holy One of God 1217 . Winds bear witness, silenced at His bidding: five loaves multiplied into five p. 63 thousand bear Him witness. The holy wood of the Cross bears witness, seen among us to this day, and from this place now almost filling the whole world, by means of those who in faith take portions from it 1218 . The palm-tree 1219 on the ravine bears witness, having supplied the palm-branches to the children who then hailed Him. Gethsemane 1220 bears witness, still to the thoughtful almost shewing Judas. Golgotha 1221 , the holy hill standing above us here, bears witness to our sight: the Holy Sepulchre bears witness, and the stone which lies there 1222 to this day. The sun now shining is His witness, which then at the time of His saving Passion was eclipsed 1223 : the darkness is His witness, which was then from the sixth hour to the ninth: the light bears witness, which shone forth from the ninth hour until evening. The Mount of Olives bears witness, that holy mount from which He ascended to the Father: the rain-bearing clouds are His witnesses, having received their Lord: yea, and the gates of heaven bear witness [having received their Lord 1224 ], concerning which the Psalmist said, Lift up your doors, O ye Princes, and be ye lift up ye everlasting doors; and the King of Glory shall come in 1225 . His former enemies bear witness, of whom the blessed Paul is one, having been a little while His enemy, but for a long time His servant: the Twelve Apostles are His witnesses, having preached the truth not only in words, but also by their own torments and deaths: the shadow of Peter 1226 bears witness, having healed the sick in the name of Christ. The handkerchiefs and aprons bear witness, as in like manner by Christs power they wrought cures of old through Paul 1227 . Persians 1228 and Goths 1229 , and all the Gentile converts bear witness, by dying for His sake, whom they never saw with eyes of flesh: the devils, who to this day 1230 are driven out by the faithful, bear witness to Him.
20. So many and diverse, yea and more than these, are His witnesses: is then the Christ thus witnessed any longer disbelieved? Nay rather if there is any one who formerly believed not, let him now believe: and if any was before a believer, let him receive a greater increase of faith, by believing in our Lord Jesus Christ, and let him understand whose name he bears. Thou art called a Christian: be tender of the name; let not our Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, be blasphemed through thee: but rather let your good works shine before men 1231 that they who see them may in Christ Jesus our Lord glorify the Father which is in heaven: To whom be the glory, both now and for ever and ever. Amen.
1 Cor. 8:5, 6. Cyril omits the clause: as there be gods many and lords many.57:1115
1 John ii. 23.57:1116
1 John 10.9.57:1117
1 John 14.6.57:1118
Matt. xi. 27.57:1119
John iii. 36.57:1120
Matt. iii. 17.57:1121
Ps. ii. 7.57:1122
τὸ πολυώνυμον, a word used by the Greek Poets of their gods, as by Homer (Hymn to Demeter, 18, 32) of Zeus, Κρόνου πολυώνυμος υἱός. Cf. Soph. Ant. 1115; Æschyl. Prom. V. 210.57:1123
John 10:7, 9. Cyril calls Christ a “spiritual,” or “rational” (λογική) door, and applies the same term to His sheep, below. Origen (In Evang. Joh. Tom. i. cap. 29): Θύρα ὁ Σωτηρ ἀναγέγραπται, ibid. φιλάνθρωπος δὲ ὢν…ποιμὴν γινεται.57:1124
John xiv. 6.57:1125
John 1:29, Isa. 53:7, 8, Acts 8:32.57:1126
John x. 11.57:1127
Matt. 10:10, 16.57:1128
Gen. 49:9, Rev. 5:5.58:1129
1 Pet. v. 8.58:1130
Ps. cxviii. 22.58:1131
Isa. 28:16, 1 Pet. 2:4.58:1132
The reading of the earlier Editions ὑπὲρ ἀνθρώπων is free from all difficulty, and so the more likely to have been substituted for what is at first sight more difficult ὑπὲρ ἄνθρωπον, the reading of Cod. Coislin. adopted by the Benedictine and subsequent Editors. The idea of a super-human Priesthood to which the Son in His Divine nature was anointed by the Father from eternity is repeated by Cyril in § 14 of this Lecture, and in Cat. xi. 1, 14. See Index, “Priesthood,” and the reference there given to a fuller consideration of the subject in the Introduction.58:1133
Ps. lxxxviii. 5.58:1134
John v. 27. Comparing what Cyril says here with Cat. iv. 15, and xv. 10, we see that he means to explain why Christ is called the “Son of Man” when “He cometh again from heaven,” and “no more from earth.” The preceding clause refers to His first coming in the flesh, as differing in the manner of His conception and birth from other men.58:1135
Cf. Athanas. (c. Arian. II. xv. 14), “That very Word who was by nature Lord, and was then made man, hath by means of a servants form been made Lord of all and Christ.”58:1136
Cf. Irenæus (III. xvi. 8): “All therefore are outside the Dispensation, who under pretence of knowledge understand that Jesus was one, and Christ another, and the Only-begotten another (from whom again is the Word), and the Saviour another.” The Cerinthians, Ebionites, Ophites, and Valentinians are mentioned by Irenæus as thus separating the Christ from Jesus.58:1137
Cf. Athanas. (Epist. X.): “Since He is rich and manifold, He varies Himself according to the individual capacity of each soul.”58:1138
1 Cor. ix. 22.58:1139
ἐκ προκοπῆς. We learn from Athanasius (c. Arian. i. 37, 38, 40), that from St. Pauls language Philipp. ii. 9: “Wherefore also God highly exalted Him, &c.,” and from Ps. xlv. 7: “Thou hast loved righteousness and hated iniquity: therefore God, thy God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows,” the Arians argued that Christ first received Divine honour as Son and Lord as the reward of His obedience as Man. Athanasius replies (c. 40): “He was not from a lower state promoted; but rather, existing as God, He took the form of a servant, and in taking it was not promoted but humbled Himself. Where then is there here any reward of virtue, or what advancement (προκοπή) and promotion in humiliation?”
The same doctrine had been previously held by the disciples of Paul of Samosata, who said that Christ was not originally God, but after His Incarnation was by advance (ἐκ προκοπῆς) made God, from being made by nature a mere man: see Athanas. (de Decretis, § 24, c. Arian. i. 38). S. Cyril refers to the error and uses the same word, in xi. 1, 7, 13, 15, 17, and xiv. 27.58:1140
καταχρηστικῶς, i.e. in a secondary or metaphorical sense. Cf. vii. 5.58:1141
νεύματι, “command” or “bidding,” as expressed by nodding the head.58:1142
Origen (De Principiis, I. ii. 10) had argued that “even God cannot be called omnipotent, unless there exist those over whom He may exercise His power,” and therefore creation must have been eternal, or God could not have been eternally Omnipotent. In other passages Origen declares it an impiety to hold that matter is co-eternal with God (De Princip. II. i. 4), and yet maintains that there were other worlds before this, and that there was never a time when there was no world existing.
Methodius, in a fragment of his work On things Created, preserved by Photius, and quoted by Bishop Bull (Def. Fid. Nic. II. xiii. 9), argues against these theories of Origen, that in John i. 2 the words “The same was in the beginning with God” indicate the authority (τὸ ἐξουσιαστικόν) of the Word which He had with the Father before the world came into existence; since from all eternity God the Father, together with His Word, possessed the Almighty power whereby whenever He would He could create worlds to rule over.
Dean Church remarks that “On the other hand Tertullian, contra Hermog. 3, considering the attributes in question to belong not to the Divine Nature, but Office, denies that God was Almighty (Lord?) from eternity; while the Greeks affirmed this (vid. Cyril Alex. in Joann. xvii. 8, p. 963; Athan. Orat. ii. 12–14), as understanding by the term the inherent but latent attribute of doing what He had not yet done, τὸ ἐξουσιαστικόν.”
Cleopas, the Jerusalem Editor, regards the passage as directed against Paul of Samosata, who asserted that Christ had become God, and received His kingdom and Lordship only after His Incarnation, and remarks:—“S. Cyril evidently regards the Lordship of Jesus Christ as twofold: one that which from eternity belonged to Him as God, which he calls natural, according to which He was ever both Lord and King, as being by nature God (Cyril Alex. in Johann. cap. xvii.); and the other the Lordship in time relative to the creatures, by which He exercises dominion over the works created by Him, as being their Maker.“58:1143
Luke ii. 11.59:1144
Among those who denied the Divine præ-existence of Christ Cleopas enumerates Ebion, Carpocrates, Theodotus, Artemon, Paul of Samosata, Marcellus, and Photinus.59:1145
Gen. i. 26.59:1146
1 Cor. x. 4.59:1149
Heb. xi. 27.59:1150
Heb. xi. 26. Quoting from memory Cyril mistakes the order of the two sentences.59:1151
Ex. xxxiii. 13. Cyril means that even before His Incarnation Christ was seen as far as was possible by Prophets such as Moses. This view was held by many of the Fathers before Cyril. See Justin M. (Tryph. § 56 ff.); Tertull. (adv. Praxean, § 16); Euseb. (Demonstr. Evang. V. 13–16).59:1152
Ex. xxxiii. 20.59:1153
Matt. xvii. 2.59:1154
Ex. xxxiii. 17. Gr. λόγον, “word,” in imitation of the Hebrew idiom.59:1155
Ex. xxxiii. 22.59:1156
Ex. xxxiii. 19. Literally “will call in the name of the Lord (Jehovah):” compare Gen. iv. 26.59:1157
Ex. xxxiv. 5-7. For “keeping righteousness and shewing mercy,” the Hebrew has only “keeping mercy.”59:1158
Ex. xxxiv. 8.59:1159
Ps. cx. 1. Heb. “An oracle of Jehovah unto my lord.” Cyrils argument is based upon the common mistake of supposing that Κύριος represents the same Hebrew word in both parts of the sentence.59:1161
1 Cor. 15:27, 28.59:1162
Cyril evidently alludes to Philip. ii. 6, “Who being in the form of God thought it not a prize to be on an equality with God:” for the right interpretation of which passage, see Dean Gwynns notes in the Speakers Commentary.59:1163
Matt. 11:27, Luke 10:22. On this text Athanasius wrote a special treatise (In illud Omnia, &c.), against the arguments of Arius, Eusebius, and their fellows, who said,—“If all things were delivered (meaning by all the Lordship of Creation), there was once a time when He had them not. But it He had them not, He is not of the Father, for if He were, He would on that account have had them always.”
Again (contr. Arian. Orat. III. cap. xxvii. § 36), Athanasius argues: “Lest a man, perceiving that the Son has all that the Father hath, from the exact likeness and identity of what He hath, should wander into the impiety of Sabellius, considering Him to be the Father, therefore He has said, Was given unto Me, and I received, and Were delivered to Me, only to shew that He is not the Father, but the Fathers Word, and the Eternal Son, who, because of His likeness to the Father, has eternally what He has from Him, and because He is the Son, has from the Father what eternally He hath.”60:1164
Luke 2:10, 11.60:1165
Acts x. 36.60:1166
Matt. iv. 11.60:1167
Isa. xix. 1. “Behold, the Lord rideth upon a swift cloud, and cometh unto Egypt: and the idols of Egypt shall be moved at His presence.” The prophecy was supposed by many of the Fathers to have been fulfilled by the flight into Egypt. Cf. Athanas. (Ep. LXI. ad Maximum, § 4): “As a child He came down to Egypt, and brought to nought its idols made with hands:” and (de Incarn. § 36): “Which of the righteous men or kings went down into Egypt, so that at his coming the idols of Egypt fell?” On the passage of Isaiah see Delitzsch, and Kay (Speakers Commentary).60:1168
Matt. ii. 13.60:1169
1 Cor. 8:5, 6.60:1171
Compare Eusebius (Eccl. Hist. I. cap. iii.), a passage which Cyril seems to have followed in his explanation of the names Jesus and Christ.60:1172
For the common reading ἐγκρίτοις πάντων Cod. Mon. I. has ἐκκρίτοις π. which is required both by the construction and the sense. The change may have been caused by the occurrence of ἐγκρίτων just below.60:1173
Eusebius (u.s): “His successor, therefore, who had not hitherto borne the name Jesus, but had been called by another name, Auses, which had been given him by his parents, he now called Jesus, bestowing the name upon him as a gift of honour far greater than any kingly diadem.” Auses is a common corruption of the name Oshea. See the note on the passage of Eusebius in this series.60:1174
Eusebius: “He consecrated a man high-priest of God, in so far as that was possible, and him he called Christ.” Cf. Lev. 4:5, 16, Lev. 6:22: ὁ ἱερεὺς ὁ Χριστός60:1175
Heb. 5:4, 5, 6. Cyril omits from his quotation the reference to Ps. ii. 7: “Thou art My Son: this day have I begotten Thee.”60:1176
Josh. iii. 1.60:1177
Matt. xxi. 31.60:1179
Matt. xxiv. 2.60:1180
Isa. lxii. 11: “Behold, thy salvation cometh; behold, his reward is with him.”60:1181
τὸ κυριοκτόνον τῶν ᾽Ιουδαίων.61:1182
Matt. i. 20.61:1183
The Anathema appended to the Creed of Nicæa condemns those who said πρὶν γεννηθῆναι οὐκ ἦν. On this Eusebius of Cæsarea (Epist. § 9) remarks: “Moreover to anathematize Before His generation He was not, did not seem preposterous, in that it is confessed by all, that the Son of God was before the generation according to the flesh.”61:1184
Isa. xlix. 1.61:1185
John 5:14, 8.61:1188
Mark ix. 24.61:1189
Compare the fragment of the Apology of Quadratus presented to Hadrian 127 a.d., preserved by Eusebius (H.E. IV. iii.): “But the works of our Saviour were always present, for they were genuine:—those that were healed, and those that arose from the dead, who were seen not only when they were healed and when they were raised, but were also always present; and not merely while the Saviour was on earth, but also after His death they were alive for a long while, so that some of them survived even to our times.” See the notes on the passage of Eusebius, in this series.61:1190
1 John ii. 22.61:1191
Heb. vii. 24.61:1192
On the opinion that Christ was from all eternity the true High Priest of the Creation, see Index, Priesthood, and the reference there given to the Introduction. Cf. x. 4: xi. 1. Athan (c. Arian. Or. ii. 12, J. H. N.).61:1193
The word synaxis was used by the early Christians to distinguish their assemblies from the Jewish synagogue, a word formed from the same root and more regularly. Synaxis came to be used more especially of a celebration of the Eucharist. See Suicer, Thesaurus, Σύναξις.61:1194
σκευαστῷ, Ex. xxx. 22-25: “a perfume compounded (μυρεψικόν ) after the art of the perfumer” (R.V.).61:1195
Heb. vii. 21.61:1196
Ps. cxxxii. 17. The “lamp for the Anointed” was commonly applied by the Fathers to John the Baptist. Compare John v. 35, and Bishop Westcotts note there.61:1198
2 Pet. i. 19. The supposed reference in the Psalm to the lamp of prophecy is mentioned by Eusebius (Demonstr. Evang. IV. cap. 16).61:1199
2 Cor. iv. 7. The reference of the lamp to Christs Incarnation is mentioned by Eusebius (u.s.) and other Fathers.61:1200
Amos. iv. 13: “and declareth unto man what is his thought.” For ו&x#o@”־המ, what is his thought, the LXX. read וׂחישִֹמְ, His Anointed, τὸν Χριστὸν αὐτοῦ.61:1201
Luke iv. 41.61:1202
John iv. 29.61:1203
Heb. ix. 11.61:1204
οὐκ ἐπολιτεύετο, “was not in citizenship,” “not naturalised.” Cf. Sueton. Nero. cap. 16: “Christiani, genus hominum superstitionis novae et maleficae.”62:1205
Isa. 65:15, 16. The LXX. here depart from the meaning of the Hebrew: “He shall call His servants by another name: so that he who blesseth himself in the earth shall bless himself in the God of truth” (R.V.).62:1207
2 Cor. xiii. 3.62:1208
2 Cor. 4.5.62:1209
Acts ix. 21.62:1210
1 Cor. xv. 9.62:1211
1 Tim. i. 13.62:1212
Matt. v. 17.62:1213
1 Tim. i. 14.62:1214
ἡ θεοτόκος— Deipara. Gibbon (Chap. xlvii. 34) says, “It is not easy to fix the invention of this word, which La Croze (Christianisme des Indes, tom. i. p. 16) ascribes to Eusebius of Cæsarea and the Arians. The orthodox testimonies are produced by Cyril (of Alexandria) and Petavius (Dogmat. Theolog. tom. v. L. v. cap. 15, p. 254, &c.), but the veracity of the Saint is questionable, and the epithet of θεοτόκος so easily slides from the margin to the text of a Catholic ms.” This passage is justly described as “Gibbons calumny” by Dr. Newman: see his notes on the title θεοτόκος (Athan. c. Arian. Or. ii. cap. 12, n.; Or. iii. capp. 14, 29, 33). The word is certainly used by Origen (Deut. xxii. 13, Lommatzch. Tom. x. p. 378): “She that is already betrothed is called a wife, as also in the case of Joseph and the Theotokos.” Cf. Archelaus (Disput. cum Mane, cap. xxxiv. “qui de Maria Dei Genetrice natus est”); Eusebius (de Vita Constantini, III. cap. 43: “The pious Empress adorned with rare memorials the place of the travail of the Theotokos”). For other examples see Suicers Thesaurus, θεοτόκος, Pearson, Creed, Art. iii. notes l, m, n, o, and Routh, Reliq. Sacr. ii. p. 332.62:1215
“Chrysostom describing the flourishing state of the Church in Egypt in those times, says: Egypt welcomes and saves Him when a fugitive and plotted against, and receives a beginning as it were of its appropriation to Him, in order that when it shall hear Him proclaimed by the Apostles, it may in their day also be honoured as having been first to welcome Him” (Cleopas).62:1216
Luke 2:29, 30.62:1217
Mark i. 24.63:1218
See Cat. iv. 10, note 7.63:1219
The Bordeaux Pilgrim, who visited the Holy Places of Jerusalem, a.d. 333, c. speaks of this palm-tree as still existing. The longevity of the palm was proverbial: cf. Aristot. (De Longitudine Vitæ, c. iv. 2).63:1220
The same Pilgrim (as quoted by the Benedictine Editor) says, “There is also the rock where Judas Iscariot betrayed Christ.” Compare Cat. xiii. 38.63:1221
See Index, Golgotha.63:1222
See the passage of the Introduction referred to in Index, Sepulchre.63:1223
See Cat. ii. 15, note 8, and xiii. 25, 34, 38. On the supernatural character of the darkness mentioned in the Gospels see Meyer, Commentary, Matt. xxvii. 45. An eclipse of the sun was of course impossible, as the moon was full. Mr. J. R. Hind (Historical Eclipses, “Times,” 19th July, 1872) states that the solar eclipse, mentioned by Phlegon the freedman of Hadrian, which occurred on Nov. 24, a.d. 29, and was partial at Jerusalem, is “the only solar eclipse that could have been visible at Jerusalem during the period usually fixed for the ministry of Christ.” He adds, “The Moon was eclipsed on the generally received date of the Crucifixion, 3 April, a.d. 33. I find she had emerged from the earths dark shadow a quarter of an hour before she rose at Jerusalem (6:36 p.m.), but the penumbra continued upon her disc for an hour afterwards.” Thus the “darkness from the sixth hour unto the ninth” cannot be explained as the natural effect of an eclipse either solar or lunar.63:1224
This clause is omitted in Codd. Mon. 1, 2, Roe, Casaub., and is probably repeated from the preceding line: such repetitions, however, are not uncommon in Cyrils style.63:1225
Ps. xxiv. 7. The first clause is mistranslated by the LXX. from whom Cyril quotes.63:1226
Acts v. 15.63:1227
The persecution of the Christians in Persia by Sapor II. is described at length by Sozomen (E.H. II. cc. ix.–xv., in this Series). It commenced in a.d. 343, and was going on at the date of these Lectures and long after. “During fifty years the Cross lay prostrate in blood and ashes” (Dict. Bib. Sassanidæ). Compare Neander, Church History, Tom. III. p 148, Bohn.)63:1229
The Goths here mentioned are the Gothi minores dwelling on the north of the Danube, where Ulfilas, “the Apostle of the Goths” (311–381), converted many of his countrymen to Christianity. After suffering severe persecution, he was allowed by the Constantius to take refuge with his Arian converts in Mœsia and Thrace. This migration took place in 348 a.d., the same year in which Cyrils Lectures were delivered.63:1230
See Index, Exorcism.63:1231
Matt. v. 16.
Next: On the Words, the Only-Begotten Son of God, Begotten of the Father Very God Before All Ages, by Whom All Things Were Made.
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