Chapter 3 The Almighty Creator Footnotes 1-24

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The Trinitarian Faith

“In the confession of belief in one God the Father Almighty, the Maker, the Nicene Council deliberately gave primacy to the concept of the Fatherhood of God, for knowledge of God as Creator is take from knowledge of God as Father, and not the other way round. As we have seen, however, knowledge of the Father is derived from Jesus Christ his Son who is of the same being as the Father, for in him the Father has revealed himself to us as he is in his own essential nature. This is why Athanasius, in that key statement of his which we have allowed to guide us, insisted that ‘it would be more godly and true to signify God from the Son and call him Father, than to name him from his works and call him Unoriginate (ἀγένητον). It follows from this, however, that our understanding of God as Creator must likewise be taken from the Son, for it is through the Son and Word who is eternally in God and proper to his essential nature that God is the Creator and Maker of everything.”

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1. Athanasius Con. Ar., 1.34

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2. Athanasius Con. Ar., 1.33; De Dec.,  30-31

3. Athanasius Con. Ar., 2.31ff. And cf. De Dec., 7, 11f.

4. Hilary De Trin., 3.22

5. Hilary De Trin., 1.17

6. Hilary De Trin., 2.6

7. Hilary De Trin., 9.61

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8. At the Council of Constantinople the words ‘of heaven and earth’ were transferred to the Creed at this point from the Nicene statement about the  Son.

9. Hilary De Trin., 7.17 with reference to John 5.17-22. Cf. De Trin., 8.4

10. See Gregory Nyss., De Trin., Opera, edit by W. Jaeger, 3.1, pp. 1ff; non sint tres Dei., 3.1, pp. 35-57 (N/A). It was upon this double meaning of ‘Father’ that Eunomius traded his heretical ideas, Con Eun., 1.36ff.

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11.  Athanasius Con Ar., 2.54; 3.1; 4.3; De Dec., 16; De syn., 46; Ad Ant., 5

12. See Athenagoras, Leg., 4.2; 15.1, where created being in relation to God as the only uncreated being is described as ‘non being.’ Cf. Origen, Con Cel., 7.42f; De prin., 1.1; Athanasius, Con gent., 2, 35, 40; De inc., 17

13. Athanasius De syn., 46ff

14. Athanasius De Decr., 22; cf. De syn., 34; and Ad Afr., 8

15. Athanasius De decr., 15; Con Ar., 1.14; 2.2, 33; 3.66; cf. 1.14, 19, Ad Ser., 2.2

16. Cf. here G Florovsky, The Concept of Creation in Saint Athanasius,’ Studia Patristica, Vol IV, 1962, pp. 45f.

17. Athanasius Con Ar., 4.4; cf. 2.41; 3.11f

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18. Athanasius Con Ar., 3.3-6; De syn., 49. For the same principle see Gregory Nyss., Con Eun., 1.38 and 42, ed. Jaeger, I, pp. 196f and 222f; Con. Eun., 3.4, II, p. 260; Antir., 6 and 7 pp. 310f and 337 (N/A).

19. Athanasius Con. Ar., 3.6; 4.1

20. Athanasius Con. Ar., 3.15; 4.1-3; Ad Ser., 1.28

21. Athanasius Ad Ant., 5; 6-11; Con Ar., 2.33; 3.1f, 15; Ad Afr., 11; In ill om., 5; Exp. fidei 1-4

22. Athanasius De Decr., 16ff, 22f; Ad episc., 17f; Con Ar., 1.16, 28; 2.33; 3.1ff; Ad Afr., 4f; cf. Exp. fidei, 1f; In ill om 6

23. Athanasius Con Ar., 3.36

24. Athanasius Con Ar., 3.12

Footnotes 25-55