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1,1 Arius and the Arians who derive from him came directly after this time of Melitius and St. Peter the bishop of Alexandria. Arius flourished during the episcopate of Peter’s successor, the holy bishop Alexander, who deposed him amid much turmoil and with a great council. For Alexander removed him from office and expelled him from the church and the city, as a great evil which had come to the world. (2) They say that Arius was Libyan, but that he had become a presbyter in Alexandria. He presided over the church called the Church of Baucalis. All the catholic churches in Alexandria < are > under one archbishop, and presbyters have been assigned to each particular church to meet the ecclesiastical needs of the residents whose < homes are* > near each church. These are also called quarters and lanes by the inhabitants of Alexandria.
1,3 Arius was born during the reign of the great and blessed emperor Constantine, the son of Constantius in his old age. Constantius was the son of the emperor Valerian, < who > himself had ruled jointly with Diocletian, Maximian and the others. (4) Everyone knows that Constan- tine, the father of Constantius, Constans and Crispus, was admirable in the practice of Christianity and the apostolic and prophetic faith of the fathers, which had not been adulterated in the holy churches until the time of Arius himself. But Arius managed to detach a large number [from the church.]
2,1 A spirit of Satan, as scripture says, entered this Arius who was Alexander’s presbyter, and incited him to stir up the dust against the church—< just as > no small fire was lit from him, and it caught on nearly the whole Roman realm, especially the east. Even today his sect has not stopped battling against the true faith.
2,2 But at that time Arius was to all appearances a presbyter, and there were many fellow presbyters of his in each church. (There are many churches in Alexandria, including the recently built Caesarium, as it is called, which was originally the Adrianum and later became the Licinian gymnasium or palace. (3) But later, in Constantius’ time, it was decided to rebuild it as a church. Gregory the son of Melitian, and Arian, began it, and the blessed Athanasius, the father of orthodoxy, finished it. It was burned in Julian’s time, and rebuilt by the blessed bishop Athanasius him- self. (4) But as I said there are many others, the one called the Church of Dionysius, and those of Theonas, Pierius, Serapion, Persaea, Dizya, Mendidius, Ammianus, and the church Baucalis and others.)
2,5 A presbyter named Colluthus served in one of these, Carpones in another, Sarmatas in another, and the aforesaid Arius, who was in charge of one of these churches. (6) It is plain that each of these caused some discord among the laity by his expositions, when, at the regular services, he taught the people entrusted to his care. Some were inclined to Arius, but others to Colluthus, others to Carpones, others to Sarmatas. Since each of them expounded the scripture differently in his own church, from their preference and high regard for their own presbyter some people called themselves Colluthians, and others called themselves Arians. (7) And in fact Colluthus < too > taught some perversions, but his sect did not survive and was scattered immediately. And if only this were also true of Arius’ insane faith, or better, unfaith—or better, wicked faith!
3,1 For in his later years he was inspired by vanity to depart from the prescribed path. He was unusually tall, wore a downcast expression and was got up like a guileful serpent, able to steal every innocent heart by his villainous outer show. For he always wore a short cloak and a dalmatic was pleasant in his speech, and was constantly winning souls round by flattery. (2) For example, what did he do but lure all of seventy virgins away from the church at one time! And the word is that he drew seven presbyters away, and twelve deacons. And his plague immediately spread to bishops, for he convinced Secundus of Pentapolis and others to be carried away with him. (3) But all this went on in the church without the knowledge of the blessed Alexander, the bishop, until Melitius, the bishop of Egypt from the Thebaid whom I mentioned, who was regarded as an archbishop himself—the affair of Melitius had not yet reached the point of wicked enmity. (4) Moved by zeal, then—he did not differ in faith, only in his show of would-be righteousness, < because of > which he did the world great harm himself, as I have explained. Well then, Melitius, the archbishop in Egypt but supposed to be under Alexander’s jurisdiction, brought this to the attention of the archbishop Alexander. As I have said, Melitius was contemporary with the blessed bishop and martyr Peter.
3,5 When Melitius had given all this information about Arius—how he had departed from the truth, had defiled and ruined many, and had gradually weaned his converts away from the right faith—the bishop sent for Arius himself and asked whether what he had been told about him was true. (6) Arius showed neither hesitancy nor fear but brazenly coughed his whole heresy up from the first—as his letters show and the investigation of him at the time. (7) And so Alexander called the presbytery together, and certain other bishops who were there [at the time], and held an examination and interrogation of Arius. But since he would not obey the truth Alexander expelled him and declared him outcast in the city. But the virgins we spoke of were drawn away from the faith with him, and the clergy we mentioned, and a great throng of others.
4,1 But though Arius stayed in the city for a long time, the confessor and martyr Melitius immediately died. Arius, then, destroyed many by instigating schisms and leading everyone astray. Later though, since he had been discovered and exposed in the city and excommunicated, he fled from Alexandria and made < his > way to Palestine. (2) And on his arrival he approached each bishop with fawning and flattery in the hope of gaining many supporters. And some received him, while others rebuffed him.
4,3 Afterwards this came to the ears of the bishop Alexander, and he wrote encyclical letters to each bishop which are still preserved by the scholarly, about seventy in all. He wrote at once to Eusebius in Caesarea—he was alive—and to Macarius of Jerusalem, Asclepius in Gaza, Longinus in Ascalon, Macrinus in Jamnia, and others; and in Phoenicia to Zeno, a senior bishop in Tyre, and others, along with < the bishops > in Coele Syria. (4) When the letters had been sent reproving those who had received Arius, each bishop replied to the blessed Alexander with his explanation. (5) And some wrote deceitfully, others truthfully, some explaining that they had not received him, others, that they had received him in ignorance, and others that they had done it to win him by hospitality. And this is a long story.
5,1 Later, when Arius found that letters had been sent to the bishops everywhere, and that afterwards he was turned away from every door and none but his sympathizers would take him in any more—(2) (for the elderly senior bishop of Nicomedia, Eusebius, was a sympathizer of his together with Lucius, his colleague in Nicomedia. And so was Leontius, the eunuch in Antioch who had not yet been entrusted with the episcopate, and certain others. Since all of them belonged to the same noxious brotherhood, Eusebius sheltered him for some time). (3) And so at that time this Arius wrote and addressed letters full of all sorts of foolishness, which contained the whole of his heretical creed, to Eusebius in Nicomedia, this before he had come to him in Nicomedia, putting in them no more than what he really thought. I feel obliged to offer one of them here which has come into my hands, so that the readers can see that I have neither said nor am saying anything slanderous against anyone. Here is the letter:
6,1 Greetings in the Lord from Arius, unjustly persecuted by Pope Alexander for the all-conquering truth of which you too are a defender, to the most beloved man of God, the faithful and orthodox Master Eusebius.
6,2 As my father Ammonius is arriving in Nicomedia it seems to me reasonable and proper to address you through him, at the same time recalling your characteristic love and [kindly] disposition toward the brethren for the sake of God and his Christ. For the bishop is harassing and persecuting us severely, and stirring up every sort of evil against us, (3) so that he has driven us from the city as godless men because we do not agree with his public declaration, “Always God, always a Son. Together with a Father, a Son. The Son co-exists with God without origination, ever begotten, begotten without origination. Not by a thought or a moment of time is God prior to the Son, [but] there is ever a God, ever a Son, the Son from God himself.” (4) And as your brother in Caesarea, Eusebius, and Theodotus, Paulinus, Athanasius, Gregory, Aetius and all the bishops in the east say that God is prior to the Son without beginning, they have become anathema—except for the ignorant sectarians Philogonius, Hellanicus and Macarius, some of whom say that the Son is an eructation and others, an uncreated emanation. (5) And to these impieties we cannot even listen, not if the sectarians threaten us with a thousand deaths.
6,6 But what is it that we say and believe, and that we have taught and teach ? That the Son is not uncreated or in any respect part of an uncre- ated being, or made of anything previously existent. He was brought into being by the will and counsel [of God], before all times and before all ages, as unbegotten God in the fullest sense, and unalterable; and before he was begotten, created, determined or established, he did not exist. (7) But we are persecuted because we have said, “The Son has a beginning but God is without beginning.” We are also persecuted because we have said, “He is made from nothing.” But we have so said in the sense that he is not a part of God or made from any thing previously existent. It is for this reason that we are persecuted; the rest you know.
I pray for your good health in the Lord, my true fellow Lucianist Eusebius; be mindful of my afflictions.
7,1 Moreover, I subjoin another letter written in supposed self-defense from Nicomedia by Arius to the most holy Pope Athanasius and sent by him to Alexandria. Once again it is filled, to an incomparably worse degree, with the blasphemous expressions of his venom. This is the letter:
7,2 Greetings in the Lord from the presbyters and deacons to our blessed Pope and bishop, Alexander.
7,3 Our faith which we have received from our forefathers and learned from you as well, blessed Pope, is as follows. We know that one God, the only ingenerate, the only eternal, who alone is without beginning, only is the true God, alone has immortality, alone is wise, alone good, alone sovereign, alone judge with the governance and care of all, immutable and unalterable, just and good, < the Lord* > of the Law and Prophets and of the New Testament— that this God has begotten an only Son before eternal times, (4) and through him has made the ages and the rest. He has begotten him not in appearance but in truth and brought him into being, immutable and unalterable, by his own will; (5) God’s perfect creature but not like any other creature; an offspring but not like any other offspring; (6) and not an emanation, as Valentinus believed the Father’s offspring to be; nor as Mani represented the offspring as a co-essential part of the Father; nor like Sabellius, who, dividing the Unity, said “Son-Father”; nor as Hieracas called him a light kindled from a light, or a lamp become two; (7) nor priorly existent and later generated or created anew as a Son. You yourself, blessed Pope, have very often publicly denounced those who give these explanations in the church and assembly. But as we say, He is a Son created by the will of God before the times and ages, who has received his life, being and glory from the Father, the Father subsisting together with him. For by giving him the inheritance of all things the Father did not deprive himself of his possession of ingeneracy in himself, for he is the source of all.
8,1 Thus there are three entities, a Father, a Son and a Holy Spirit. And God, who is the cause of all, is the sole and only being without beginning. But the Son, who was begotten of the Father though not in time, and who was created and established before the ages, did not exist before his begetting but was alone brought into being before all things by the Father alone, not in time. (2) Nor is he eternal, or co-eternal and co-uncreated with the Father. Nor does he have a being simultaneous with the Father’s, as some speak of things [which are naturally] related to something else, thus introducing two uncreateds. But God is before all as a Unit and the first principle of all things. And thus he is also before Christ, as we have learned from you when you have preached publicly < in > the church.
8,3 Thus, in that the Son has his being from God < who > has provided him with life, glory and all things, God is his first cause. For God is his ruler, as his God and prior to him in existence, because the Son originates from him. (4) And if “out of the belly, and “I came forth from the Father and am come,” are taken by some to mean that he is part of a co-essential God and an emanation, the Father must be composite, divisible and mutable—and in their opinion the incorporeal God has a body and, given their premises, is subject to the consequences of corporeality. We pray for your good health in the Lord, blessed Pope. (5) Arius, Aeithales, Achillas, Carpones, Sarma- tas, Arius, presbyters; the deacons Euzoeus, Lucius, Julius, Menas, Helladius, Gaius; the bishops Secundus of Pentapolis, Theonas of Libya, Pistus—the bishop the Arians consecrated for Alexandria.
9,1 Now that matters had been stirred up in this way, Alexander wrote to the emperor Constantine. And the blessed emperor summoned Arius and certain bishops, and interrogated them. (2) But < with the support > of his co-religionists Arius at first denied the charge before the emperor, while inwardly hatching the plot against the church. And after summoning him the blessed Constantine, as though to some degree inspired < by > the Holy Spirit, addressed him saying, “I trust in God that if you are holding something back and denying it, the Lord of all has the power to confound you speedily, especially since it is by him that you have sworn.” Hence Arius was indeed caught holding the same opinions, and was exposed before the emperor.
9,3 But he made a similar denial again, and many of his defenders petitioned the emperor for him through Eusebius of Nicomedia. But mean- while the emperor was moved with zeal, and wrote a long circular against Arius and his creed to the whole Roman realm, filled with all sorts of wisdom and truthful sayings. (4) It is still preserved among the scholarly and begins, “The most high Augustus Constantine, to Arius and the Arians. A bad expositor is in very truth the image and representation of the devil.” (5) Then, after some other remarks and after giving a long refutation of Arius from the sacred scripture, he also indignantly directed a line from Homer against him and quoted it, and I feel that I must quote it here as well. (6) It goes, “Come now, Ares Arius, there is a need for shields. Do this not, we pray; let Aphrodite’s speech restrain thee.”
10,1 Arius wished to be received back into the church in Constantinople, and Eusebius pressed for this and had great influence with the emperor, and kept pestering the bishop of Constantinople at that time. The bishop did not wish to be in the same fellowship with Arius or enter into communion with him, and was troubled and groaned, but Eusebius said, “If you won’t do it by your own choice he’ll come in with me tomorrow at the dawn of the Lord’s Day, and what can you do about it?”
10,2 That most pious and godfearing bishop, Alexander, bishop of the best of cities—(he and the bishop in Alexandria had the same name)— spent the whole day after he heard that, and the night, in groans and mourning, praying and beseeching God either to take his life so that he would not be polluted by communion with Arius, or to work some won- der. And his prayer was answered. (3) Arius went out that night from the need to relieve himself, went to the privy, sat down in the stalls inside, and suddenly burst and expired. Thus, he was overtaken and surrendered his life in a smelly place, just as he had belched out a dirty heresy,
11,1 When this was over the emperor felt concerned for the church, because by now many members often differed with one another and there were many schisms. He therefore convened an ecumenical council, and the names of 318 bishops are preserved to this day. And they condemned Arius’ creed in the city of Nicaea, and confessed the orthodox and unswerving creed of the fathers, which has been handed down to us from the apostles and prophets. (2) After the bishops had signed this and condemned the insane Arian sect, < peace* > was restored. They passed certain ecclesiastical canons at the council besides, and at the same time decreed with regard to the Passover that there must be one unanimous concord in the celebration of God’s holy and most excellent day. For it was variously observed by people; some kept it early, some between [the disputed dates], but others, late. (3) And in a word, there was a great deal of controversy at that time. But through the blessed Constantine God directed the right ordering of these things for the sake of peace.
11,4 After Arius had been condemned and these measures taken Alexander died that same year after Achillas had succeeded him, but Theognas was consecrated too, by the Melitians. Then the blessed Athanasius succeeded Achillas after he had been bishop for three months. Athanasius was Alexander’s deacon at that time, and had been sent by him to court; as Alexander’s death approached he had ordered that the episcopate be conferred on Athanasius. (5) But the custom at Alexandria is that the consecrators do not delay after the death of a bishop; < the consecration* > is held at once for the sake of peace, to avoid conflicts among the laity with some for one candidate and some for another. (6) Since Athanasius was not there they were forced to consecrate Achillas. But the throne belonged to the person called by God and designated by the blessed Alexander, and the priesthood was prepared for him.
11,7 Thus Athanasius arrived and was consecrated. He was very much a zealot for the faith and a protector of the church, and by now there were [schismatic] services everywhere, and a splinter group of laity formed by the so-called Melitians, for the reason I gave in my piece on Melitius. In his desire to achieve the unification of the church Athanasius accused, threatened, admonished, and no one would listen. (8) This was the reason for all the intrigues and plots against him, the extremity of his God-given zeal. And so he was subjected to banishments too because of his excommunication by the Arians with the highly unjust secular power. (9) But enough about the blessed Athanasius. His story has been told in full detail in the above description of Melitius.
12,1 Now Arius was infused with the power of the devil, and wagged his tongue against his own Master with shameless impudence—originally from his supposed desire to expound the words of Solomon in his Proverbs, “The Lord created me a beginning of his ways. Before the age he set me up in the beginning, before he made the earth, before he made the depths, before the springs of waters came forth, before the mountains were settled, before all hills he begot me.” (2) This became the introduction of his error; neither < he himself > nor his disciples were ashamed to call the creator of all things, the Word begotten of the Father without beginning and not in time, a creature.
12,3 But then, on the basis of this one passage, he directed his malignant mind into many evil paths, < he himself > and his successors, and they set out to utter ten thousand blasphemies and more against the Son of God and the Holy Spirit. (4) They broke the front, as it were, and con- cord of the holy, orthodox faith and church, [though] not by their own power or wisdom. The deluded people who were [truly] inclined to join them were few, but many gradually came in from hypocrisy; and many, besides, were forced into communion with them because they had < no way to resist* >. And no one < of sound faith* > was their agent, but the care< less >ness of the faithful first, and the protection of emperors.
12,5 The beginning < came with > the emperor Constantius, who was a meek and good man in all other respects and who, as the son of the great and perfect Constantine with his piety and unwavering observance of the right faith, was pious himself, and good in many ways. (6) But he was mistaken only in this matter, his failure to follow the faith of his fathers— not by his own fault, but because of those who will give account at the day of judgment, the bishops in appearance, so-called, but corrupters of God’s true faith. (7) These must give account, both for the faith and for the persecution of the church, and the many wrongs and murders that have been committed in the churches because of them; and for the vast numbers of laity who still today are suffering affliction under the open sky; and for Constantius of blessed memory himself who, since he did not know the orthodox faith, was led astray by them and in his ignorance deferred to them as priests. For he was not aware of the error of the blindness and heresy in them which was caused by the devil’s plot.
13,1 Secondly, their gang of snakes gained further strength through Eudoxius, who wormed his way into the confidence of the most pious and God-loving emperor Valens and, once again, corrupted his ear. The reason they could maintain their position was Valens’ baptism by Eudoxius. (2) Otherwise < they would have been refuted > long ago even by women and kids—never mind the more mature, who understand all the exact terms of godliness and right faith, but even by anyone with any partial glimmer of understanding of the truth—and, since they were refuted by the ancients, they would have been harried as blasphemers of the Master, as second killers of the Lord and despisers of the divine protection of our Lord Jesus Christ. (3) But by the emperor’s patronage, that is, his protection of them, < they are in the ascendent >, so as to put into effect all the wrongs that have been and are still being done by them at Alexandria, Nicomedia, Mesopotamia and Palestine, under the patronage of the same, current emperor.
14,1 All the rest of their teachings are contrived from this verse in Proverbs, “The Lord created me the beginning of his ways, for his works.” And < they gather > every possible agreement and equivalent to this text < from the scriptures >, and everything that could be in accord with it, although neither the text itself nor the other passages say anything of the sort about the divinity of the Son of God. (2) All the same, anything like this—the text in the Apostle, “Receive ye the high priest of your profession, who is faithful to him that made him”; and < the one > in John’s Gospel, “He it is of whom I said unto you that he that cometh after me hath come into being before me”; and the one in Acts, “Be it be known unto all you house of Israel that God hath made this Jesus whom ye crucified both Lord and Christ,” and others like these—wherever < they find some text* > of note < they collect it* > as a defense against their foes. (3) For they are indeed foes and conspirators. “Let God arise and let his foes be scattered” might well have been written of them and their kind. They appear to be members of our household—there is nothing worse than foes of one’s own household, for “A man’s foes are all the men of his household.” And this too probably applies to them.
15,1 For they leap up like savage dogs to repel their foes and say, “What do you say of the Son of God?” (For these are their devices for introducing their poison to the simple.)
“And what more can there be after this, after one calls him the Son of God, you folks who are ‘wise in your own eyes and prudent in their sight,’ and give the appearance of knowledgeability? What more can one add to the name of Jesus, other than to say that he is true Son, of the Father and not different from him?”
15,2 Then they scornfully jump right up and say, “How can he be ‘of God?’ ” And if you ask them, “Isn’t he the Son?” they confess the sonship in name but deny it in force and meaning and simply want to call him a bastard, not a real son. “For if he is of God,” they say, “and if God as it were begot < a Son > from himself, from his actual substance or his own essence—well then, he swelled, or was cut, or was expanded or contracted in begetting him, or underwent some physical suffering.”
And they are simply ridiculous to compare their own characteristics with God’s, and draw a parallel between God and themselves. (4) There can be nothing of the kind in God. “God is spirit” and has begotten the Only-begotten of himself ineffably, inconceivably and spotlessly.
15,5 “If he is of his essence then,” they say, “why doesn’t he know the day and the hour, as he says, ‘But of that day or that hour knows no man, neither the angels, neither the Son, but the Father only?’ And if he is ‘of the Father,’ how could he become flesh?’ How could that nature which cannot be contained put on flesh, if by nature he were of the Father?”
16,1 And they do not know how they are gathering these calculations together to their own shame. For if he took flesh, and suffered and was crucified in it because he was different from the Father’s essence, they should tell us which other spiritual beings donned flesh even though they were creatures. For they cannot help admitting that the Son is superior to all. Even if they call him a creature, they admit that he is superior to all his creatures.
16,2 Indeed, they want to flatter him as though they were doing him a favour—as though they were striking him with one hand but anoint- ing him with the other. For they wish to make this concession to him as though by their own choice, and say, “We call him a creature, but not like any other creature; a product of creation, but not like any other product; and an offspring, but not like any other offspring.” This to deprive him of the begetting which by nature is proper to him by saying, “not like any other offspring,” and declare him a true creature by saying, “not like any other creature.”
16,3 Whatever a creature may be, it is a creature. Even though its name is any number of times more exalted it is just the same as all creatures. The sun cannot not be a creature just like a rock even though it is brighter than the rest. Nor, because the moon outshines the stars, is it for this reason not one of the creatures. “Behold, all things are thy servants.”
16,4 But the Only-begotten is truth and his word is true, as he said, “If ye continue in my word ye are truly my disciples, and ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” But if his word is truth and frees the souls whom he sets free, how much more is he himself free— since he is truth, and sets his believing servants free! For all things are his servants, and his Father’s, and the Holy Spirit’s.
17,1 Then again they say, “How could he come in the flesh, if he was of the Father’s essence?” [Is it not true that] angels, who are his servants, have not taken flesh? Archangels? Hosts? All the other spiritual beings? (2) But they say too that the Spirit is even more inferior, and is the creature of a creature, since he is < the product > of the Word. Why did the Spirit not take flesh then, since, on Arius’ premises, he can have a face more changeable than the Son’s? But since the Son was the Father’s wisdom he consented, by his own perfection, to assume our weakness, so that all salvation would come to the world through him. (3) But people who turn good things to bad are ungrateful—ungrateful, unwise, insulters and blasphemers of their own Master.
And whatever else they say, in the last analysis they mean it as a detraction of him. “If he was of the Father’s essence, why was he hungry? Scrip- ture says too that God ‘shall not hunger or thirst, nor is there any finding out of his counsel.’ But Christ was hungry and thirsty. Why did he tire from his journey and sit down, < when scripture says > that God ‘shall not weary? (4) And why did he say, “The Father that hath sent me is greater than I?’ The sender is one person, the sent, another.”
And it is plain that the Father is not the Son, and the Son is not the Father. We do not talk like Sabellius, who says that he is the Son-Father. (5) If he had not said, “Another is he that hath sent me,” and, “I go unto my God and your God, unto my Father and your Father,” < the disciples would have believed that he himself was the Father. < This is why* > he said, < “My God.” But he said, “your God,” because* > his disciples were begotten < only by grace* >, and not by nature from the essence of God. < This is why > he said, “your Father,” to them.
17,6 But people who say such things are just cracked. If he is called the Son in name only and is not the Son by nature, he is no different from all the other creatures even if he is of superior rank. Because the emperor outranks his governors and generals, this does not mean that he does not have the same limitations as the rest, and is not their fellow servant of the same creation, since he is mortal, just as his subjects are. (7) And because the sun surpasses the other stars, and the moon does to an extent, this does not mean that they are not heavenly bodies subordinate [to God], and subject to the ordinance of the one creator and maker, the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. (8) And because angels surpass the visible creatures and, in comparison with the rest, are the greatest of all—for they were created invisible, enjoy the supreme privilege of serving God with continual hymns, are immortal by grace though not by nature, and yet have been vouchsafed a natural immortality by him who in himself is life and immortality—[all] this does not mean that they do not serve with fear and trembling, accountable and answerable to the holy Godhead, and subject to his bidding and command.
18,1 This will help us < understand* > the exact nature of the truth we are after: to say, “Son,” but say it without considering him a son in name only, but say that the Son is a son by nature. With us too, many are called sons without being sons by nature. But our real sons are called “true”; they were actually begotten by us. (2) And if he was only called a son, as indeed all have been called sons of God, he is no different from the rest. And why is he worshiped as God? On Arius’ premises all the other things that have been given the title of sons should be worshiped, since they are termed sons of God. (3) But this is not the truth. The truth at all times knows one only-begotten Son of God whom all things serve and worship, and to whom “every knee shall bow, of things in heaven and things in earth and things under the earth, and every tongue shall confess that Jesus Christ is Lord to the glory of God the Father.”
18,4 But neither is the Holy Spirit equivalent to the other spirits since the Spirit of God is one, a Spirit that proceeds from the Father and receives of the Son. Arians, though, make him a creature of a creature. For they say, “ ‘All things were made by him, and without him was not anything made that was made.’ (5) Therefore,” they say, “the Holy Spirit is a creature too, since ‘all things were made by him.’ ”
And those who have lost their own souls for no good reason do not know that created beings are one thing, and that < un >created beings—Father, Son and Holy Spirit, one God, Trinity in truth and Unity in oneness—are another. (6) This is the reason that God is one: there are not two Fathers, or two Sons or two Holy Spirits, and the Son is not different from the Father but begotten of him, and the Holy Spirit is not different. But the Son is only-begotten, without beginning < and > not in time. And the Holy Spirit, as the Father himself and the Only-begotten know, is neither begot- ten nor created, nor alien to the Father and Son; “he anointed Christ with the Holy Spirit.” If the Only-begotten is himself anointed with the Spirit, who can bring a charge against the Holy Trinity?
19,1 Then again the insane Arius says, “Why did the Lord say, ‘Why do you call me good? One is good, God’ ” as though himself denying his own goodness?” (2) Because they are soulish and fleshly, are discerned by the Holy Spirit and devoid of him, and lack the gift of the Holy Spirit which gives wisdom to all, they do not know God’s power and goodness, or the dispensation of God’s wisdom.
19,3 “Again,” says Arius, “the sons of Zebedee asked him through their mother if one of them might sit at his right and one at his left in his kingdom, and he told them, ‘Ye know not what ye ask. Are ye able to drink the cup that I shall drink of? And when they said, Yea, he said unto them, Ye shall drink of my cup, but to sit on my right hand and on my left is not mine to give, but is for them for whom it is prepared of the Father.’ (4) Then the apostle says, ‘God raised him from the dead, as though he needed someone to raise him. And it says in the Gospel according to Luke, ‘There appeared an angel of the Lord strengthening him when he was in agony, and he sweat; and his sweat was as it were drops of blood,’ when he went out to pray before his betrayal. (5) And again, on the cross he said, ‘Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani, that is, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me.’ And do you see,” says Arius, “how he is in need of help?”
19,6 But as to his words, “I am in the Father and the Father in me,” < they cite >, “We two are one, that they also may be one,” “And do you see,” he says, “that we too shall be one as the Father and the Son are one.”* > Thus he is not speaking of a oneness by nature, but of a oneness of concord.”
19,7 But not only this; they also deny that he has received a human soul, and do so deliberately. For they confess that he has true flesh from Mary, and everything human except for a soul. Thus, when you hear of his hunger, thirst, weariness, journeying, sweat, sleep or anger, and say that he needed these because of his human nature, they will tell you afterwards that flesh does not do these things of itself unless it has a soul. (8) And in fact, this is true. “What can this mean,” they say, “except that his ‘divine nature’ had needs?”—so that, when they say that his “divine nature” had needs, they can declare that he is alien to and different from his Father’s true essence and nature.
19,9 I believe, however, that from one, two, or five of their poorly chosen, refuted and exploded proof texts < I can make the whole of their villainy plain* > to everyone who has understanding. And since the whole truth is proclaimed, and plainly confirmed, in the faith of orthodoxy, < I trust that* > even if they cite a million other texts besides these contrived expositions, the Arians will stand convicted in the eyes of those people who have godly good sense. For since they mean the same, most of these will be refuted in [the refutation of ] these few.
20,1 And I shall start my argument first with the place where Arius began the evil planting of their bitter root, the words of Solomon, The Lord created me the beginning of his ways, for his works.” (2) And scripture nowhere confirmed, nor did any apostle ever mention this text to apply it to the name of Christ. Thus Solomon is not speaking of the Son of God at all, even if he says, “I, wisdom, have given counsel and knowledge a home, and I have summoned judgment” (3) How many “wisdoms” are loosely called God’s? But there is one Only-begotten, and he is not given that name catachrestically, but in truth.
For all things are God’s wisdom, and whatever is from God is wisdom. (4) But the unique, supreme Wisdom is something else—that is, the Only- begotten, He who is called wisdom, not loosely but in truth, He who is always with the Father, “the power of God and the wisdom of God.” But “The poor man’s wisdom is despised”; and, “since in the wisdom of God the world knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of the Gospel to save them that believe”; and, “God hath made foolish the wisdom of this world”; And, “God gave to Solomon an heart like the sand of the sea, and made him wiser than the sons of Ana”; and, “God gave wisdom to Bezaleel, and God filled Uri with wisdom.”
20,5 And there is a great deal to say about wisdom, and “Where is the place of understanding, and where can wisdom be found?” Even though the renowned wisdom says, “I, wisdom, have given counsel and knowledge a home, and I have summoned judgment. By me kings reign, and through me princes are great, rulers write righteousness, and despots possess the earth. (6) I love them that love me, and they that seek me shall find me. Wealth and glory are mine, and the possession of many goods, and righteousness. I walk in the way of righteousness, and I tread in the midst of right paths, to apportion substance to them that love me, and fill their treasures with goods. (7) If I tell you the incidents of each day, I shall remember to recount the happenings from everlasting. The Lord created me the beginning of his ways, for his works. Before the age he established me in the beginning, before he made the earth and before he made the deeps, before fountains of water came forth, before mountains were founded and before all hills he begat me,” and so on—(8) [even so], since there are some who want to dispute the passage, our opponents will obviously reply by citing the term, “wisdom,” and the sequel to it, ‘The Lord created me,” together with, “I, wisdom, have given counsel a home.” “See here,” < they will say >, “wisdom gave her own name at the outset and, as she went on in order, indicated herself when she said, ‘The Lord created me.’ (9) See, she says, ‘I, wisdom,’ above; and below she says, ‘If I tell you the happenings of each day, I shall remember to recount the things from everlasting.’ And what does she mean [by the ‘happenings from everlasting’]? ‘The Lord created me the beginning of his ways.’ ”
21,1 I have said that many things which < are > loosely < termed > wisdoms have been given by God from time to time, since God does all things with wisdom. But there is one true wisdom of the Father, the subsistent divine Word. For the word [“wisdom”] itself (i.e., at Prov. 8:22) by no means compels me to speak of the Son of God; < scripture > did not make that clear, nor did any of the apostles mention it, and not the Gospel either. (2) But if it were taken of the Son of God—the word [in itself ] is not the same [as “Son”], and does not lend itself to an immediate judgment [as to whether it means “Son” at this point].
For the book is entirely proverbs. And nothing in a proverb has the same meaning [that it usually does]; it is described verbally in one way, but intended allegorically with another meaning. (3) If Solomon says this, however, and some venture to apply it to the Son of God—never! The word is not a reference to his Godhead. (4) But if it can be applied to Christ’s human nature—for “Wisdom hath builded her house”—and if it can therefore be piously spoken in the person of Christ’s human nature, as though his human nature were saying, “The Lord created me” of his Godhead—(that is, “the Lord built me in Mary’s womb”)—“as the beginning of his ways for his works,” [then wisdom might indeed mean “Son” here.] (5) For the beginning of the “ways” of Christ’s descent into the world is the body he took from Mary in his “work” of righteousness and salvation.
But some crackbrain who is struck with this frightful plague and has enmity for the Son of God in his heart will be sure to rush forward and say, (6) “He said, ‘If I tell you the incidents of each day, I shall remember to recount the happenings from everlasting.’ And you see that he says, ‘from everlasting.’ But according to Matthew God’s incarnation came after seventy-two generations; how can ‘from everlasting’ be said by the human nature?” (22,1) And those who have strayed entirely off the road of the truth do not realize that whatever the sacred scripture wishes to teach, < if > it is beginning an exposition it does not go straight to the oldest data and, as it were, the main point, but begins with the events nearest at hand in order to show last of all what came first. (2) For this is why it said, “If I tell you the incidents of each day,” [first], but afterwards,” I < shall > also recount the things from everlasting.” So God showed Moses the burning bush first, and the vision in the first instance was that of a bush on fire. And an angel spoke to him immediately, but later the Lord spoke to him from the bush.
22,3 But Moses did not ask him straight off about what he had seen, but inquired about things in the distant past. For God said, “Come, I send thee to the children of Israel, and thou shalt say unto them, The God of your fathers hath sent me, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob,”—naming Abraham and the others, five or six generations before Moses. And since he had said “the God of your fathers” he had declared something ancient to him. (4) But Moses, with God-given understanding, was not asking about this but about something even more ancient: “If I go unto them and they say to me, What is his name? what shall I say unto them?” and then he revealed his name: “I am He Who Is.” (5) And he had begun first with the things nearest in time, but last of all revealed what was furthest in the past.
Luke too begins with things that are later and nearest in time, “And Jesus began to be about thirty years of age, being, as was supposed, the son of Joseph, the son of Eli, the son of Matthan, the son of Nathan, the son of David, the son of Judah, the son of Jacob, the son of Abraham, the son of Nahor, the son of Noah, the son of Lamech, the son of Enoch, the son of Seth, the son of Adam, the son of God.” And you see how he spoke of the incarnation first, and then the [things he says] last.
22,6 And so when Matthew, in the fleshly genealogy, wished to remind people of Christ’s human nature, he did not say at once, “The birth of Jesus Christ the son of Abraham.” He said “son of David” first and then “son of Abraham,” indicating the sight most lately seen and the most recent happening and [then] one still further in the past, to show the indispensability of what is still higher above all creation.
23,1 And so, when the blessed John came and found people preoccupied with Christ’s human nature on earth, with the Ebionites gone wrong because of < Mathew’s > tracing of Christ’s earthly genealogy from Abraham and Luke’s carrying of it back to Adam—and the Cerinthians and Merinthians, saying that he was conceived sexually as a mere man, and the Nazoraeans and many other sects,—(2) John, as though coming along behind them (he was the fourth evangelist) began to recall them from their wandering, as it were, and their preoccupation with Christ’s coming below. As though following behind and seeing that some were pointed towards rough, steep paths and had left the straight, true road, he began, as it were, to say to them, “Where are you headed? Where are you going, you who are taking that rough road full of obstacles and leading to a pit? (3) That isn’t so! Turn back! The divine Word begotten of the Father on high does not date only from Mary. He is not from the time of Joseph her betrothed. He is not from the time of Shealtiel, Zerubbabel, David, Abraham, Jacob, Noah and Adam. ‘In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.’ ”
23,4 The word, “was,” followed by “was” and followed by another “was,” admits of no “was not.” And you see, first of all, how scripture gave the most recent events at once—how Matthew showed the way with the genealogy and still did not give < all > the precise facts himself, though he surely carried the genealogy into the past. And Mark < described > the events in the world, a voice crying in the wilderness, < and > the Lord who was foretold by the Prophets and Law. And Luke traced him from the most recent times back to the earliest, < But later John, coming fourth, made the crowning touch manifest, and the perfection of the order on high and the eternal Godhead. (5) In the same way Solomon in his proverb < first indicated* > the beginning of the ways—(if, indeed, some may wish to say with piety that, since his Godhead itself had made the flesh and human nature as “the beginning of his ways for his works” of men’s salvation and his own goodness)–his incarnate self, since it says itself of Christ’s Godhead, “The Godhead itself founded the house,” and immediately afterwards, as the topic develops, says, “He founded me in the beginning.”
23,6 Was the Son of God really created, and later established, in his divine nature? The clever folks, the observers of heaven, had better tell me the art by which wisdom was created, the tool with which it was established. But if it is allowable even to conceive of it, let us flee from such profound blasphemy, to keep our hands off the divine nature of the Only-begotten, which is always with the Father and has been begotten of him. (7) For < the > Lord was the Word, always with the Father, always wisdom, always God of God, true and not spurious light, always deriving his being from the Father, and always truth and life.
24,1 And why should I say so much about this? He then says, “He established me in the beginning.” The godly can therefore see that here he means the human soul. (2) For the incarnate human nature says, “The Lord created me,”—if, indeed, it should be taken in this way. “He established,” however, should be taken in the sense that he was established in the soul. But “Before all hills he begot me,” is meant to show that his begetting is from on high.
And I have said these things, by no means to insist on them, but as a devout way of understanding the passage as a reference to the human nature. (3) Even though I must speak in this way, no one can ever make me say that this passage refers to Christ. But it if is to be said of Christ, there indeed is its meaning, not obtained by guesswork but in accord with the piety of the thought, so as not to attribute any deficiency to the Son < or > suppose that he has a Godhead which is inferior to the Father’s essence. (4) For some of our fathers, and orthodox,—if indeed we must speak in this way of “The Lord created me and established me”—have interpreted this by taking it of the human nature. And < because > this is a pious thought many important fathers have taught it. (5) And if one should not wish to accept the teaching of the orthodox [on this point], he will not be compelled to and it will do no harm to those who are strangers to the faith and pagans.
For neither will < the fact that Christ suffered* > for us entail any deficiency in < the Son >; his Godhead is free [from suffering] and is always with the Father. (6) Christ suffered whatever he suffered, but was not changed in nature; his Godhead retained its impassibility. Thus, when he willed of his own good pleasure to suffer for humanity—since the Godhead, which is impassible in itself, cannot suffer—he took our passible body since he is Wisdom, consented to suffering in it and taking our sufferings upon him in the flesh, accompanied by the Godhead.
For the Godhead does not suffer. (7) How can the One who said, “I am the life,” die? God remains impassible but shares the sufferings of the flesh so that, even though Godhead does not suffer, the suffering may be counted as the Godhead’s and our salvation may be in God. The suffering is in the flesh that we may have, not a passible but an impassible God who counts the suffering as his own, not of necessity but by his own choice.
25,1 But anyway, neither have these people examined the Hebrew expressions, or found out or < understood > what they mean, and yet they have wilfully and rashly risen up as deadly foes, looking for a chance to mutilate the faith—or themselves, rather, for they can’t mutilate the truth. And since they have found “The Lord created me,” they recklessly dream as though they were having hallucinations, bringing mankind things that are of no use, and disturbing the world. (2) This is not what the Hebrew means, and so Aquila says, “The Lord got me.” Men who have sired children always say, “I have gotten a son.”
But neither did Aquila render the meaning. “I have gotten a son” implies something new, but in God there can be nothing new. (3) Even if one con- fesses that the Son has been begotten of the Father and not created, he was begotten without time and without beginning. (4) For there can be no time between the Father and the Son, or there will be some time < previous > to the Son’s. For if all things are made through him, so are the times. (5) But if there is a time before Him who is before all—how can there be? But if there is, then we shall need another Son, through whom the time before the Son has been made.
And there are many things which lead into endless perplexity the minds of those people who “are always busy but do nothing good.” (6) In the Hebrew it says, “Adonai” (which means, “the Lord”) “kanani,” which can be rendered both “hatched me” and “got me.” In the strictest sense, however, it means, “hatched me.” And which hatchling is not begotten from the substance of its begetter? And here, among bodily creatures, the young are produced by the pairings of male and female—from men to cattle, birds and all the rest. (7) And so, since the Only-begotten was in all respects the Father’s wisdom and willed to do all things for our correction, so that no one would form a false notion of him and be deprived of the truth, he was not conceived from a man’s seed when he made his home in the human race, when he was truly born of a woman and lay in the Virgin’s womb during the period of gestation. Otherwise his birth in the flesh might have required pairing and sexual congress. But he took flesh only from his mother and yet made his human nature complete in his own image—not deficient, but true human nature.
25,8 And his not being of a man’s seed did not make him deficient. He to whom all things belong took all things in their perfection: flesh, sinews, veins and everything else; a soul, truly and not in appearance; a mind; and all other human characteristics except for sin, as scripture says, “He was in all points tempted as a man, apart from sin.” (9) Thus, by being born in the flesh here simply of a mother, perfectly man and without defect, he would show those who desire to see the truth and not blind their own minds that on high he has been perfectly begotten of a Father on high, without beginning and not in time; and below has been born of a mother only, without spot or defilement.
26,1 But to explain the phrase, “Adonai kanani,” which means, “The Lord hatched me.” Whatever begets, begets its like. A man begets a man and God begets God, the man physically and God spiritually. (2) And as is the man who begets, so is the man who is begotten of him. The human begetter, who is subject to suffering, < begets > his own son, and the impassible God begot the Son who was begotten of him without suffering—begot him truly and not in appearance, of himself and not from outside himself, impassible spirit impassibly begetting spirit, impassible God impassibly begetting very God.
26,3 For if he created all things himself—and you admit, Arius, that God has created all things—then he also begot the Son himself. (4) But if you say, “If he begot, he suffered in begetting,” we will say to you that if he suffered in begetting he tired from creating. But all that he wills, he has simultaneously perfected in himself; the Godhead will not bring suffering on the Son in the process of creation; nor can the Godhead be conceived of as suffering because of its spotless begetting of the Son. For the Father is unchangeable, the Son is unchangeable, the Holy Spirit is unchangeable, one essence, one Godhead.
26,5 But you are sure to ask me, “Did God beget the Son by willing to or without willing to?” And I am not like you, you troublemaker, to think any such thing of God. “If he begot him without willing to, he begot him unwillingly. And if he begot him willingly, the will came before the Son, and because of the will there will be at least a moment of time between the Son [and the Father].” (6) But in God there is no time to will and no will to think. God begot the Son neither by willing to nor without willing to, but begot him in his nature which transcends will. For his is the nature of Godhead, which neither needs a will nor does anything without a will, but of itself possesses all things at once and is in want of nothing.
27,1 But Arius ferrets out still more texts, always wandering over every- thing and fussing with unsound arguments—not as the sacred text is, but as he < conceives of it > in his unhealthy preoccupation with controversies and verbal disputes which are good for nothing except his own ruin and his dupes’. < And > he seizes on the text where the Lord blessed his disciples and said, “Father, grant them to have life in themselves. And this is life eternal, that they know thee, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom thou hast sent.” (2) But I have already dealt with all this in my long work on the faith which, in my mediocrity and feebleness, I have been compelled to write about faith at the urgent request of the brethren, and have called the Ancoratus. (3) And as, with God’s help, my poor mind was able to gather the truths of God’s teaching from every scripture—like an anchor for those who wish < to hold onto > the holy apostolic and prophetic faith of our fathers which has been preached in God’s holy church from the beginning until now—I have set it out clearly for our minds to grasp and be certain of, < so that > they will not be shaken by the devil’s devices or damaged by the seas which, by the sects with their bluster, have been raised in the world.
27,4 For the Lord taught his own disciples, “If what ye have heard from the beginning abide in you, and what ye have heard < of me > abide in you, ye shall abide in me and I in you, and I in the Father and ye in me.” (5) Thus the truths of the faith, which we have heard from the Lord since the beginning, abide in God’s holy church, (6) and God’s holy church and orthodox faith thus abide in the Lord; and the Lord, the Only-begotten, abides in the Father, and the Father in the Son, and we in him through the Holy Spirit, provided we become temples to hold his Holy Spirit. (7) As God’s holy apostle said, “Ye are the temple of God, and the Spirit of God dwells in you.” Thus the Spirit is God of God; and through God’s Holy Spirit we are called temples, if we give his Spirit a home within us. For, < the > Spirit is the Spirit of Christ who proceeds < from > the Father and receives of the Son, as the Only-begotten himself confesses.
28,1 I have discussed all this in that book of mine about faith—the book which, as I said, I wrote to Pamphylia and Pisidia. But here, since I have come to the debated expressions one after another, I have had diligently to make the same points over again, as it were, because of Arius, the heresiarch with whom we are dealing, and the Arians who derive from him—to demolish their wicked arguments which turn “sweet to bit- ter, good to evil, and light to darkness.” (2) For through the holy Isaiah “Woe” is definitively pronounced by the Lord upon such people, who turn good to evil. And God is in no way responsible for their kind. From pride, prejudice, would-be wisdom or devilish conceit, each of them has been deprived of the truth and, with his unsound teaching, brought an affliction on the world.
28,3 All right, let’s take up this text in order to understand the words the Lord has spoken, as the holy apostle says, “We also have the Spirit of God, that we may know the things that God hath bestowed upon us, which things we likewise speak.” (4) For the Lord says, “Grant them to have life in themselves. And this is life eternal, that they may know thee, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom thou hast sent.”
29,1 Now this trouble-maker, Arius, and his followers jump up and say, “His praying to God at all, and saying, ‘Father, grant them to have life in themselves,’ shows that he is not the equal of the Giver of the life. If he were of the Father’s essence he would give the life himself, and not ask the Father to give it to those who receive the gifts he gives in answer to their requests.”
29,2 And the people who have turned their minds against themselves do not realize that the Only-begotten came to be our example and salvation in every way, and took his stand in the world like an athlete in an arena, to destroy all that rebels against the truth—sometimes by idolatry, sometimes by Jewish conceit, sometimes from unbelief, sometimes from the vanity of human prejudice—came to teach men humility, so that no human being will think himself important, but will ascribe everything to the Father of all. (3) And so, although he is life—as he says, “I am the life”—and although he has the power to give life, he has no wish to confuse what is right. < As > he has come for one sovereignty, one God-head, one truth, one concord, one Glory, to secure men’s salvation and understanding, he also asks of the Father before his disciples. (4) For which son does not ask his father? And which father does not give to his son? But what kind of son is different from the nature of his father? And thus < the > Son, “the only-begotten of a Father, full of grace and truth,” needed no filling, < since he was > not in want of truth but full of grace and truth. (5) And he who is full both gives and can give; but his will is to refer all things to the Father.
For the Son glorifies the Father and the Father glorifies the Only- begotten. “I have glorified thee on the earth,” said the Son to the Father, and the Father said to the Son, “I have both glorified thee, and will glorify thee again.” (6) The Godhead can have no dispute, no envy: “Grant them to have life in themselves.” He who is life, wills to receive life from the Father and give it to his disciples although he himself is life, so as not to divide the Divine Unity and thus not put an obstacle in the way of the Jews—so that the Jews would hear him asking of the Father.
30,1 How does the Son ask the Father, then? As though not having and so asking? No, but by declaring the oneness of the Trinity, which provides the gifts perfectly to one who receives them worthily. But to show the Godhead’s oneness, in another passage he gives [gifts], no longer by ask- ing for them but by giving his own on his own authority, for he is Well- spring of Wellspring, and God of God; < for > “He breathed in their faces and said, ‘Receive ye the Holy Spirit.’ ” (2) And in another passage “He lifted up his hands and said,” “Receive ye the Holy Spirit.”
And he has life in himself, to give to whomever he will. “For as the Father hath life in himself, so hath the Son life in himself.” (3) And you see that [it is] from honor of the Father and for the sake of one unity and one glory, and so that the disciples will not suppose that the Only-begotten has come to divert the believers’ minds from the God of the Law and the prophets—(4 )[it is] for this reason that, being God and foreknowing of the malice of men, he addresses these words as to the Father and gives the Father the glory that cannot be taken away. And so Mani will be con- founded, who denies the Father; the disciples will learn that the Godhead is the same in the Old and the New Testaments; the Jews will be put to shame because the Only-begotten did not come to teach another God but to reveal his Godhead and that of his heavenly Father. (5) “Grant them to have life in themselves,” [he says], although he himself was proclaiming this life. Why, then, would he ask the Father to give them what he himself was teaching and giving? For he made the life known later on by saying, “This is life, that they may know thee, the only true God.”
31,1 Next, because Christ said, “the only true God,” Arius and his followers jump at the verse as though they have found an argument against the truth. “He said, ‘The only true God.’ You see, then, that only the Father is true.”
31,2 But let’s ask you Arians ourselves, “What do you mean? Is only the Father true? But what is the Son? Isn’t the Son true? If the Son isn’t ‘true,’ ‘Our faith is vain and our preaching is in vain.’ (3) And in blasphemy against your own selves you will be found to be likening the Son of < God > to the unspeakable, infamous idols—you to whom the prophets said, as though to persons who are suffering a delusion, < ‘Solomon says, The worship of the unspeakable idols is the beginning of all evil.’* > And each of the prophets recalled this text, < like Jeremiah* > who said, < ‘Woe unto them that follow after idols,’* > and, ‘Our fathers made for themselves false gods, and their high places became false.’ (4) The Only-begotten too is condemned in your eyes, and you thus hold a disgusting opinion of ‘him who redeemed you’—if, indeed, he did redeem you. For since you deny your Saviour who redeemed you, you cannot be of his fold.”
For if God is not true, he should not be worshiped; and if he is created, he is not God. And if he is not to be worshiped, how can he be called God? Stop it, you who < are making a god* > of one more natural object, (5) who are conducting Babylonian < worship* >, who have set up Nebuchadnezzar’s image and idol! You who are blowing this renowned trumpet to unite < the worshipers > < against > the Son of God* >; who, with your wrong words, are bringing the peoples to disaster with music, cymbals and psaltery, preparing them to serve an image rather than God and truth. And who else is as true as the Son of God? (6) “For who shall be likened to the Lord among the sons of God?” says the scripture, and, “None other shall be reckoned in comparison with him.” And what does he say [next]? To show you that he means the Son, he describes him next and says, “He hath found out every way of understanding, and given it < to Jacob his servant and Israel whom he loveth. > (7) And thereafter he appeared on earth and consorted with men.” How can this not have been said truly of him? < And how can the Son not be true God* > when he says, “I am the truth?”
32,1 But you will ask me, “Why did the only-begotten true God say, ‘that they may know thee, the only true God?” [I reply],“to discourage polytheism, to prevent division of the life-giving knowledge? If the Father is the only true God, then the Son is true and truly begotten of the Father! (2) For it was ‘to honour the Father’ and reveal him alone as ‘true God,’ that the Son made it known that he is ‘truly begotten of the Father.’ ”
And how was this to be made known? (3) Just look at the texts here! It says here that the Father is the only “true God,” but in the Gospel accord- ing to John it says, “He was the true light. And which “true light” was this but the Only-begotten? And again, the scriptures say of God, “God is light,” and they didn’t say, “God is true light.” On the other hand, they said of God’s only-begotten Son that the Only-begotten is “true light.”
32,4 It said, “true God,” of the Father, and not that God is “true light.” But of the Son, it said, “God,” and didn’t add “true” to “The Son is God.” And where it said, “God is light,” it didn’t add, “true light.” Then what should we say of the Father? We < shall confess* > that God is “true light,” and not make the Godhead defective. (5) And because “true light” is not [said of God] in the scripture, should we < also > sinfully say that God is not true light? And since scripture says that the Son is God, and that he was God with the true Father—(‘The Word was God’; and it didn’t say that the Word became God, but that he was God)—the equivalence [of the Father and the Son] will be shown by the two phrases. From the Father’s being “true God” and the Son’s being “true light” the equality of their rank will be evident; and from the Son’s being “God” and the Father’s being “light” the equivalence of their glory will be made plain. (6) And there will be no difference, nor can anyone contradict the truth, but the Father is true God, and the Only-begotten is true God.
33,1 But I am obliged to speak further here, about the Holy Spirit, or, if I leave anything out, I may give the enemy, who want < to contradict >, a chance to hold their < wicked beliefs* >. For it is the same with the Holy Spirit, as the Lord himself testifies by saying “the Spirit of truth” and “the Spirit of the Father,” but the apostle by saying “Spirit of Christ.” (2) Thus, being the Spirit of the Father [and] the Spirit of the Son, the Holy Spirit is the Spirit of truth, the Spirit of God, just as God is true God, just as he is true light. For there is one Trinity, one glory, one Godhead, one Lordship. (3) The Father is a father, the Son is a son, the Holy Spirit is a holy spirit. The Trinity is not an identity, not separate from its own unity, not wanting in perfection, not strange to its own identity, but is one Perfection, three Perfects, one Godhead.
33,4 And the sword of the opposition has fallen [from its hand]. Indeed, scripture says, “< Their blows became a weapon > of babes.” Even if infants want to take weapons they lack the strength, and cannot do anything with their hands. Even though infants are roused to anger they kill and do harm to themselves rather [than anyone else], since they cannot make an armed attack on others. Similarly these people have sent their imposture to war with themselves, but will bring no evil on the sons of the truth.
34,1 But once more I shall go on to other texts which they have thought of. To begin with, the falsehood they use in order to deceive the simple and innocent is amazing. As the serpent deceived Eve in her innocence, so they, if they wish to win their allegiance, first < approach* > those who do not wish to go by their creed with much flattery, and with liberal expenditure, attention, and both promises and threats, such as “You’re opposing the imperial decrees and the wrath of the emperor Valens.” (2) And what do they say [next]? “Well, what is it that we’re saying? It’s the faith [itself ], only you’re [too] proud [to admit it]!”
All right, let’s see whether this is the faith. They say, “We confess that the Son is begotten of the Father, and do not deny it. (3) But,” they say, “we must also confess that he is a creature and a product of creation.”
But nothing could be more pathetic. Nothing created is like anything begotten, and nothing begotten is like anything created, especially in the case of that one, pure and perfect essence. (4) For all things have been created by God, but only God’s Son has been begotten, and only the Holy Spirit proceeded from the Father and received of the Son. All other things are created beings, and neither proceeded from the Father nor received of the Son, but received of the Son’s fullness, as the scripture says, “By the Word of God were all things established, and all the host of them by the Spirit of his mouth.”
34,5 “But we must confess the creaturehood as well,” says Arius, “since scripture said ‘creature’ in a figurative sense, and ‘offspring’ is meant figuratively. For even if we say, ‘offspring,’ we shall not mean an offspring like any other.”
Well then, they are deceiving the innocent by saying, “offspring,” and the offspring isn’t real. (6) “But we also confess Christ’s creature-hood,” they say. “For Christ is also called door, way, pillar, cloud, rock, lamb, lamb, stream, calf, lion, well-spring, wisdom, Word, Son, angel, Christ, Saviour, Lord, man, Son of Man, cornerstone, sun, prophet, bread, king, building, husbandman, shepherd, vine, and all sorts of things like these. In the same way,” they say, “we also use ‘creature’ in an accommodated sense of the word. For we are bound to confess it.”
35,1 Such wicked speculation, and such cunning! May the Lord allow no son of the truth to be brought by such dissimulation to accept “creature” as the Son of God’s title for such reasons, and make that confession. Let them tell us what the use of this is, and we will grant them the conclusion of their reasonings. (2) For all those things are ways of speaking and do not impair the Son’s divinity, make him defective in comparison with the Father, or < alter him* > from his essential nature. Even if he should be called “door,” it is because we enter by him; if road, it is because we go by him; if “pillar,” because he is the support of the truth. Even if “cloud,” this is because he overshadowed the children of Israel, if “fire,” because of the brightness of the fire which gave them light in the wilderness. Even if he should be called “manna,” this is because they denied that he was the bread from heaven; if “bread,” because we are strengthened by him.
35,3 Even if “angel,” this is because he is an angel of a great counsel. The word, “angel,” is a synonym. Rahab received the “angels,” and yet the men who had been sent there were not angels, but the persons who brought the report of the place. And so, because he reported the Father’s will to men, the Only-begotten is an “angel of a great counsel,” who reports the great counsel in the world.
35,4 Even if he should be called “stone,” the “stone” is not inanimate; this is a way of speaking, because he has become a stumbling block to the Jews, but a foundation of salvation to us. And he is called “corner- stone” because he unites the Old and the New Testaments, circumcision and uncircumcision, as one body. (5) But he is called “lamb” because of his harmlessness, and because the sin of humankind has been done away by his offering to the Father as a lamb for the slaughter; for the Impassible came to suffer for our salvation. And whatever else in these usages is an aid to human salvation is applied to him by the sacred scripture in some accommodated sense.
36,1 Now what good can “creature” do, or what use is it to our salvation and to the glory and perfect divinity of the incarnate divine Word? How does calling him “creature” help us? What can a creature do for creatures? How does a creature benefit creatures? (2) Why did God create < a Son > and allow < him > to be worshiped as God, when he says, “Thou shalt not make to thyself any likeness, neither on earth nor in heaven, and you shall not worship it?” Why did he create a Son for himself and order that he be worshiped, particularly when the apostle says, “And they served the creature rather than the creator, and were made fools.” It is foolish to treat a creature as God and break the first commandment, which says, “Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve.” (3) And thus God’s holy church worships, not a creature but a begotten Son, the Father in the Son, and the Son in the Father, with the Holy Spirit.
36,4 “Oh, yes!” says Arius. “Unless I say he is a creature, I attribute diminution to the Father. For the creature does not diminish the creator, but by the nature of things the begotten shrinks its begetter, or broadens or lessens or cuts it, or does it some such injury.”
36,5 It is most foolish of those who think such things to imagine God-head in their likeness—and of those who attribute their frailties to God, since God is wholly impassible, both in begetting and in creating. We are creatures, and as we suffer when we beget, we tire when we create. And if the Father suffers in begetting, then he also tires in creating.
36,6 But how can one speak of suffering in connection with God, and of his tiring if he creates? He does not tire, never think it! The scripture says, “He shall not weary.” “God is spirit” and begot the Son spiritually, without beginning and not in time, “God of God, light of light, very God of very God, begotten, not made.”
37,1 But I shall pass this text by too, and once more devote my attention to others which they repeat and bandy about in wrong senses, and which I have mentioned earlier. For again, they confusedly misinterpret this one: “Receive your high priest, who is faithful to him that made him.” (2) In the first place they reject this Epistle, I mean the Epistle to the Hebrews, remove it bodily from the Apostle and say that it is not his. But because of their malady they < turn > the text to their advantage, as I said, take it in a wrong sense, and covertly introduce the Son’s creaturehood, supposedly by means of the words, “faithful to him that made him.”
37,3 But someone with sense might ask them when our Lord adopted the title of “high priest,” and they will be at a loss because they have no answer. (4) Christ never adopted these names before his incarnation— stone, sheep led to the slaughter, man and Son of Man, eagle, lamb and all the rest that are applied to him after his coming in the flesh. Thus he is called “high priest” because of the declaration the Law made of him, “A prophet shall the Lord raise unto you, of your brethren.” (5) The text thus plainly explains “prophet,” “high priest,” and “of them” [as titles given] after his sojourn on earth, and it can be seen at a glance how, once again, God’s unconquerable power and foreknowledge foretold and certified all this by its wondrous light, to the “stopping of every mouth” that rebels against the truth. (6) For he says in the same passage, “Every high priest taken from among men is ordained for men to offer gifts and sacrifices, being able to bear with [their infirmities]. For he hath need < to offer > for his own sins. But he that had no sin offered himself to the Father.” (7) And “of men” is said because of the earthly sojourn, but “not of men” < and > “that hath no sin” are said because of the divinity. And of his divinity he says, “though he were a son”; but of his humanity, “He learned by the things he suffered.”
38,1 And you see that all of Christ’s titles are simple and have nothing complicated in them. “High priest faithful to him that made him” here describes neither the making of his body here nor of his human nature, nor is it speaking of creation at all, but of the bestowal of his rank after his incarnation, like the text, “He gave him a name which is above every name.” (2) And this was not done of old in the divine nature, but < in > his current advent, since the human nature he took from Mary received the name above every name, the title “Son of God” in addition to the title of “Divine Word.” (3) And again, for this reason he has said here, through the apostle himself, “We see Jesus, who for a little was made lower than the angels crowned with glory and honour,” so that the Master and Maker of the angels would appear lower than they; so that he who inspires the angels with dread and fear and, with the Father and the Holy Spirit, made the angels from nothing, would be called “lower,” and it would be plainly evident that he is not speaking of his Godhead here, but of his flesh.
38,4 For the suffering of death was not counted as the Word’s before he took flesh, but after his incarnation, with the same Word being passible and impassible—impassible in Godhead but suffering in his manhood, just as both titles apply to the one [person]—“Son of Man” to the same person, and “Son of God” to the same. For Christ is called the “Son” in both alike.
39,1 What did God “make” him, then? From all that has been said the trouble-makers should learn that nothing in this text is relevant to the Godhead but to the human nature. And “made him,” does not refer to the making or creating of him, but to his rank after the advent.
39,2 If someone asks a king about his son, and says, “What is he to you?” the king will tell him, “He is my son.”
“Is he your legitimate or your illegitimate son?” The king will say, “He is my legitimate son.”
“Then what did you make him?”
“I made him king.” Plainly, the son’s rank is no different from his father’s. (3) And because he has said, “I made him king,” this surely does not mean that the king is saying, “I created him.” In saying, “I made him,” he has certainly not denied the begetting of him—which he had acknowledged—but has made that plain; “I made him,” however, was a statement of his rank. Thus, by those who wish < to obtain > salvation, the Son is unambiguously believed to be the Son of the Father, and is worshiped.
39,4 But “was made high priest” is said because he offered himself in his body to the Father for mankind, himself the priest, himself the victim; as high priest for all creation he offered himself spiritually and gloriously in his body itself and “sat down at the Father’s right hand,”137 after “being made an high priest forever” and “passing through the heavens” once and for all. The same holy apostle testifies to this of him in the lines that follow. (5) And once again their ostensible discussion of sacred scripture, which they use as their excuse, has proved a failure, for scripture is life- giving; nothing in it offers an obstacle to the faithful or makes for the downfall of blasphemy against the Word.
40,1 Then they have mentioned another passage, when John was standing in the wilderness, saw him coming and said, “This is he of whom I said unto you, a man cometh after me that was made before me, for he was before me.” (2) And first, as though they were half drowsy, they mis- understand the expressions themselves and say, “How could this apply to the human nature, when he was not conceived in Mary’s womb before the conception of John? Instead, as the evangelist says ‘In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent to a city of Galilee, to a virgin espoused to a man whose name was Joseph. And he came in unto her and said, Hail, thou that art highly favoured, the Lord is with thee,’ and the rest that follows. (3) When the virgin was troubled at his greeting he said to her, ‘Behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb and bear a son, and shalt call his name Jesus. And behold, thy cousin Elizabeth hath conceived a son in her old age, and this is the sixth month with her that is called barren.’ And you see,” they say, “that John was already there six months before the annunciation to Mary. (4) How can ‘He was made before me’ apply to Christ’s human nature?”
Can any innocent soul whose mind is not clear and firmly made up, hear that without being upset? (5) For <truly>, for those who bring their troubles on themselves, the sacred scriptures’ cogent, innocent, life-giving teachings appear to do more harm then [good] although the texts are always illumined in the Holy Spirit. (6) What has been omitted to make the text convincing? See here, it says “This”—to indicate something visible and show it to the onlookers—“This is he of whom I said unto you that he cometh after me.” And who is coming but a “man?” But no one with sense would suppose that our Lord is a mere man—only the sects we have already indicated, the Cerinthians, Merinthians and Ebionites.
40,7 But together with knowing him as “man” it is surely true that the true believers know him with certainty as Lord as John testifies, “That which we have heard from the beginning,” meaning him who is from the beginning—the invisible divine Word, of whom we have heard in the sacred scriptures, who is proclaimed in the prophets, who is hymned in heaven. (8) Thus the intent of < the line >, “We have heard with our ears from the beginning and have seen with our eyes,” is for the word, “hear,” coming first, to confess that he is God from the beginning, but for the word “see” to show that he is the man of whom John the Baptist said, “After me cometh a man.” And “our hands have handled” is meant to show that he is God from on high and indicate that he is visible man, born of Mary and raised whole from the dead without losing the sacred vessel and perfect human nature he had taken; it is meant instead, from the handling of his side and the nail-prints, to give unshakeable testimony to all three. (9) So please understand here too that “This is he of whom I said unto you that a man cometh after me” is meant to show the human nature, and “He was before me” to show the Godhead “because he was before me.” For “He was in the world,” says the holy Gospel, “and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not.”
41,1 But if he was in the world before the creation and begetting of John he had arrived in the world before him—not meaning creation or making, but in the sense in which people use the same word to say, “I arrived in Jerusalem, arrived in Babylon, arrived in Ethiopia, arrived in Alexandria”— not meaning creation here, but presence and arrival. (2) What does “I arrived in Babylon” or some other place mean but, “I came [there]?” “He arrived [here] before me” shows the continual presence on earth of the Word, and “He was before me” shows that the Godhead is eternal. “Com- ing after me” does, however, indicate his conception after John’s.
And so “I am the voice of one crying in the wilderness” means a cry to draw people’s attention. (3) When people call they give a loud shout first without any words, to call from a distance to the people who need to hear something from them. And once the people hear the shout [which is] only [a shout], and pay attention and get ready to hear, then finally the shouter pronounces whatever words he wanted to say. (4) And thus John was a voice in the wilderness to draw people’s attention. For John himself was not the Word; the Word on whose account the preparatory shout was heard came after him. And this is why he says, “the voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord.” (5) The voice prepares the ways, but the Lord sets foot on the ways which have been prepared. And a voice speaks < to > the ear; but when the ear is receptive, the word is implanted in the ears of its receivers. Thus Arius and his followers will never perceive God’s truth although it enlightens the hearts of the faithful at all times to prevent their turning away from the salvation which is to be found in the Word, the true, uncreated and unoriginate Son of God.
42,1 But again, as I go ahead and come to each topic in turn, I shall not omit any point I have previously proposed for solution but take up the thread again. Once more the Arians offer another excuse, St. Peter’s words in Acts, “Be it known unto you, all ye house of Israel, that God hath made this Jesus whom ye crucified both Lord and Christ.” (2) And again they say, “Here we find ‘made’ in scripture”; and they do not see that the phrase, “this Jesus”—for the phrase is self-explanatory—means the Lord’s human nature. < The meaning* > is clear from “this Jesus whom ye crucified.” This is < plainly* > the flesh which they crucified, for < it is clear that > they crucified flesh. (3) And thus the Lord says in the Gospel, “But now ye seek to kill me, a man that hath told you the truth which I have heard of my Father,” < declaring himself man* > but not separating his Godhead from his manhood. (4) For neither was Christ’s Godhead separate from his manhood when he was about to suffer, nor when he suffered was the human nature abandoned by the Word. But no more had the impassible Word previously suffered; he suffered < only > in the suffering flesh. For the same name truly applies to both natures and is given to the divine nature and to the human. The human nature of the Word himself is Christ, and yet Christ is the Lord in the human nature itself. (5) But the suffering is in the flesh, as Peter said, “Christ suffered for us in flesh”— to show the divine nature’s impassibility—and again, “dying in the flesh, brought to life in the Spirit.”
Thus Peter said “this Jesus whom ye crucified” to show that the sacred human nature was not abandoned by the impassible and uncreated Word, but was united with the uncreated Word on high. (6) And this is why he said, “God hath made Lord and Christ” the thing that was conceived by Mary, the thing that had been united with Godhead. For Mary is not divine by nature, and for this reason he adds “made.” And so, when Mary asked him, “How shall this be, seeing I know not a man?” the angel Gabriel said, “The Spirit of the Lord shall come upon thee and the power of the highest shall overshadow thee. Therefore also that which shall be born shall be called holy, the Son of God.”
42,7 But when he said, “that which shall be born,” he showed unquestionably that the divine Word is indubitably a Son, not created, not made. (8) And as to the human nature which was born of Mary, he showed, by adding “that which is born < shall > also < be called holy, the Son of God >,” that God had made < even the thing that was born > Christ and Lord. And as everything about the other passages has been fully dealt with and presents no difficulty, here too everything about his human nature had been dealt with, and for those who are attending to their salvation there is no bypath. (9) For the Word is a living Word from a living Father—the Father’s Son, not his creature. But everything in the human nature has been dealt with, so that no one may suppose that he is an apparition, or that his flesh is co-essential with his Godhead on high, but everyone [will realize] that the human nature is united in one impassibility, especially after his resurrection from the dead. For scripture says, “He dies no more, death has no more dominion over him.” (10) There is one Lord, one Christ, one King, seated at the Father’s right hand; that which is physical and spiritual is one union, one spiritual Godhead, both natures radiant and glorious. (11) But since I feel that the passage has been sufficiently expounded I shall pass it by; and let me take up the discussion by < going on* > to < warn > my hearers against the other parts of their < foolish- ness > which they have invented for the overthrow of their hearers.
43,1 For again, they say, “If he is of the Father’s essence why does he not know the hour and the day, but by his own admission acknowledges to the disciples that he does not know the things the Father knows and says, ‘Of that day and of that hour knows no man, not even the angels in heaven or the Son, but the Father only.’ (2) If the Father knows,” they say, “and he doesn’t know, how can the Father’s and the Son’s Godhead be the same, when the Son doesn’t know what the Father does?”
43,3 But not knowing their human frailty, they seize, to their own harm, on everything that the Only-begotten, in his divine wisdom, teaches mystically for the assurance of the truest knowledge—as horrid serpents, when caught by a crafty hunter, take the bait to their own destruction. They do not know that falsehood will never stand, while the truth always keeps its own sons straight and confounds falsehood. (4) Those who harbour this evil suspicion of Christ from the first must tell us which is by nature greater and more important to know—God the Lord of all and the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, or the day which is brought to its dawning by the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, and the hour when it dawns. But if they are asked that question, the truth itself will surely oblige them to say that the Father is greater, as indeed he is.
43,5 Now if the Son says, “Neither knows any man the Father save the Son, and no man knows the Son save the Father,” when he knows the greater thing, the Father, how can he not know the lesser thing? But these words are divine and spoken by the Holy Spirit, and are unknowable by those who have not received the gift and grace of the Holy Spirit. (6) For such are the Arians with their wavering spirit and feeble intellect, and they slip into hurtful deviations even in their minor ones.
44,1 For the Lord’s own words will step out to meet them, “Be ye ready, < let > your loins < be > girded about and let there be lamps in your hands, and be ye as good servants, awaiting their Master. For like a thief in the night, so will the day come.” And the holy apostle says, “Ye are not children of the night but of the day, lest the day should come upon you as a thief.” (2) If, then, the children of the day are not hidden by the darkness, but are ready because “Their Master cometh in a day they know not and at an hour they await not,” then, because of his brilliant being and his Godhead, will not < He who > gives them being be different from his servants, the sons of the day? Or, like those who do not know the day and are unprepared, will he be caught in ignorance and subject to deficiency? (3) Who but the < in >sane could suppose these things of the Lord, that he will be like his subjects and disciples—or like those who, from their unpreparedness and ignorance, are inferior to these? That is just silly.
44,4 Now if these things are not possible, but the explanation, when compared with it, turns out to contradict the saying, we need to see what explanation we can find that will leave both saying and explanation un-contradicted and prevent our deviating from the truth. For the Lord cannot lie, and can give no expositions for our salvation in vain.
44,5 Thus the Father knows [the day], the Son knows, and the Holy Spirit knows. For nothing in the Father is different from the Son, nor is anything in the Son different from the Spirit. In every Sect, when I needed to, I have shown with authentic proofs that the Trinity is one Godhead and has no internal differences but is all perfection—three Perfects, one glory and one sovereignty.
45,1 But you will ask me, “Why did he say this, then?” And I have already given an explanation of this elsewhere. But nothing need keep me from adding to the same things and telling the same truths; “To me it is not burdensome, but it will be a safeguard” for the readers and refutatory for the opposition. The reason for this is as follows. (2) Christ has made incidental mention, in the same sentence, of three ranks: the Father, himself, and the angels in heaven. And he has attributed knowing to the Father, implying not only acquaintance and knowledge but every- thing that is always indubitably controlled, brought about and made by the Father and the Son. (3) Indeed the Father knows the day—knows it, has fashioned and made it, and < at the same time > judged, as he said in the Gospel according to John, “The Father judgeth no man, but hath given all judgment to the Son—in giving judgment he has judged; in judging, then, he knew [the day]; knowing, he is aware of when it will come. (4) For “He that believeth not on the Son is judged already”—not in the sense that the judgment is past, but that what will happen then is already made plain, just as any particular thing follows from this [or that cause]. For scripture is aware of more than one sort of “knowledge”; and in my frequent returns to the main point I have never ceased to clarify and explain each subject with the similes and examples which have already been discussed.
46,1 So let’s take < up > the discussion again < too >, from the beginning, and speak about these things. What do you mean, people? Did or didn’t Adam know Eve his wife even before their disobedience and transgression? And you can’t contradict the truth. (2) Even though you prefer not to deal fairly with the sense of this, you will be exposed, for scripture says, “They were naked and were not ashamed.” For if they were naked and not blind they saw and knew each other. For neither can you deny this and not admit that they could see; “Eve saw that the tree was good for food and goodly to look upon.” Thus they saw and knew.
And by knowing and seeing they recognized each other. (3) But it was much later when scripture said, “And Adam knew Eve his wife” It speaks of the first knowledge and sight in the sense of knowledge gained by seeing and intellection, but in the case of the second acquaintance and knowledge it is describing knowledge by experience. (4) Thus the sacred scripture says the same of David in his old age, “And David was old and could not keep warm. And his servants said, Let a virgin be sought for the king. And there was found Abishag the Shunamite.” And it says, “And she warmed him, and he slept by her side, and David knew her not.” (5) How could he not know her when she was close to his body and slept beside him? But here scripture is describing, not knowledge by intellection but knowledge by experience.
46,6 Indeed it is the same with Jacob. When he was herding with Leah and Rachel for seven years he knew them. But when the scripture speaks of their lawful conjugal intercourse it says, “He knew Leah his wife.” The first knowing was by intellection and sight, but the second acquaintance and knowing was by experience and activity.
46,7 And likewise in the sacred scripture “The Lord knows them that are his” doesn’t mean that he doesn’t know those who aren’t his, but refers to the activity of the Lord’s assistance. And [so with] “Depart from me, all ye workers of iniquity. I never knew you.” Did he have no intellectual knowledge of them? But because they were not worthy of him he withholds his personal knowledge from them. And elsewhere he says, (8) “You have I known of all nations.” [If we take this literally], all the nations, and the entire human population, have been left out of his knowledge. On the contrary, aren’t the hairs of each one’s head known < by > him—of those who serve, and those who disobey him? And “God knows the ways on the right hand.” Doesn’t he know the ways on the left? And how much of this sort can be said of the different kinds of knowledge!
47,1 And so with God’s only-begotten Son. Since < he says >, “The Father hath given judgment to the Son,” he attributed the knowledge of personal acquaintance and experience to the Father. For “No one knows the day save the Father” is meant in two ways. He knows when it comes— indeed, the day and hour come by his authority—and he knows it < by acting >. For there has already been activity on his part, the delegation of the judgment to the Only-begotten.
47,2 And thus the same knowledge is in the only-begotten Son of God, since he is God and no different from the Father. For he himself knows the day, he brings it himself, carries it on, brings it to an end, and judges, and without him it cannot come. (3) But he does not know it through activity yet, that is, he has not yet judged. The impious are still impious, the unrighteous covet, fornicators, adulterers and idolaters commit iniquity, the devil is at work, sects arise, and imposture does its work until God’s only-begotten Son brings the day itself, and gives each his just due. And < then* > he will know it < through activity* >, that is, [know] it through deed and power. (4) And in the Father knowledge is complete in two ways, but in the Son it is there by intellection and is not unknown, but has not yet been completed by activity, that is, he has not yet judged.
47,5 But knowledge has been withheld from the holy angels in two ways—< in that they do not yet know [the day] > intellectually, and < also > that they do not yet know it through activity, that is, through the fulfilment of their function. For they have not yet been directed to go out, gather the impious in bundles like tares and prepare them for burning. (6) And you see, beloved and servants of God, that all these people who welcome shocking notions because of some preconception of their own, have gone to war in vain, and directed against themselves their various attempts to blaspheme the Son of God as lesser and inferior.
48,1 But now that we have also explained this sufficiently let us once again, by the power of God, devote our attention to their other arguments. Although these great heretics who are game for anything do not have beliefs like the Manichaeans or like many other sects, still, even though they hold that Christ’s fleshliness is real, they hold even this inadequately and not in the fullest sense. (2) They confess that the Saviour truly had flesh; but when they learn from the Gospel itself that he tired from his journey, was hungry and thirsty, and went to sleep and got up, they put all this together and apply it to his Godhead as though they wanted to separate his Godhead from the Father’s essence for reasons like the following. (3) For they say, “If he is of the Father, but the Father does not tire or thirst or hunger as the sacred scripture says, “He shall not weary not hunger nor thirst nor sleep, and of his counsel there is no finding out”—(4) if these things are characteristic of the Son, they say, “then he is different from the Father’s essence and nature.” And they themselves will admit that before the incarnation these things did not apply to the Only-begotten. However, when they are forced to admit this and come to the things he did in his human nature, and hear that naturally he did these things because he had taken a body, yielding to them for his legitimate needs like a mule yielding to a chariot because he had taken flesh in reality and not appearance, then they claim that this was not due to his flesh alone.
49,1 For in fact [flesh] cannot of itself thirst or grow tired. But those who have left the road and turned off on paths that lead in the opposite direction do not know that the Son of God did not simply take flesh at his coming, but also took a soul, a mind and everything human except for sin, and was < truly begotten >, though not of a man’s seed, but of the holy virgin Mary by the Holy Spirit. (2) < But if* > they will not admit < themselves* > that he has taken a soul, < they will be made fools of* > by this argument against them, which is the simplest of all the replies to their nonsense. (3) The true God—< who > says of himself, “I am the truth”—himself acknowledges that “My soul is troubled,” “My soul is exceeding sorrowful,” and “I have power to lay down my soul and to take it”—[this last] to show that, as God, he has this power, < but that by his incarnation he has truly become man* >. (4) For no [mere] man could say this; no one has the power to lay his soul down and take it. But when Christ speaks of a soul he shows that he has become man in reality, not appearance.
49,5 And again, [he says], “I am the good shepherd who lays down his soul for the sheep.” And to show the reality of these things he said to his Father on the cross, “Into thy hands I commend my spirit”; and when the soldiers came, the scripture says, “They found that he had already given up the ghost.” (6) And again, “Crying with a loud voice” he said, “Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani, that is, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?”—I have also explained this way of speaking earlier— and, as the Gospel says, “gave up the ghost.” (7) For when the truth says, “He gave up the ghost,” “into thy hands,” “My soul is troubled,” and all the rest, who would be < so > foolish as to believe such a bunch of half blind dreamers and ignore the actual credible statements of the divine Word?
50,1 And then, like pirates mutilating sound bodies, hunting out of each scripture things which have been said well and rightly, they appeal to some expression which the scripture often uses figuratively. And they like to cite in a literal sense something that has been said figuratively, but interpret a literal and unequivocal statement as an allegory of something else. (2) They jump right up and cite some words from the holy Isaiah which were spoken in the person of the Father, “Behold, my servant shall understand, my beloved in whom I am well pleased, whom my soul lovs,” as though this is the Father speaking; for so indeed he is. (3) “Well, now,” they say, “has the Father taken a soul too?” But if we say, “Of course not! What can this be but a figurative expression?” they reply, “Then what was said by the Son is figurative too.” (4) And they think they can get an occasion against the truth in this way, but it won’t be given them. The truth stands unadorned on its own feet, undefeated and with no need for decoration.
50,5 For let’s see what both of these mean. If the Father became corporeal, assumed flesh and said these words, he really took a soul. But if the Father did not assume flesh and still said, “my soul,” this is a figure of speech referring to God, to safeguard the [Son’s] legitimacy and show the legitimacy of the Father’s relationship to the Son. (6) But one cannot say the same of the Son in this respect. The Father did not take flesh, while the Son assumed flesh. The Father did not become man, but the Son did.
50,7 Something similar may be said of the Father. As he says, “My soul hath loved him,” in this passage, so he says, “I have found David the son of Jesse, a man after mine heart,” “My heart is far from them.” (8) If we take what is said of the soul figuratively because “My soul hath loved” is a figure of speech, then what is said of the heart is also figurative. And clearly, this must be evident to any sensible person. (9) Therefore, if the Father speaks figuratively of a soul and a heart, which he did not take—for he did not assume flesh—things of this sort are applied to the Father in a figurative sense. But the same is not to be supposed of the Son; for the Son took flesh, and the entire human constitution.
51,1 This will serve as a reply to anyone who speaks figuratively of the Son with regard to < the > humanity, since there is no < allegorical > expression even* > in a part of a word, because Christ truly took human nature. (2) For if what is said of the Son’s soul is allegory and we must take the language about it figuratively, then the same has been said of his heart. And finally we will admit that everything about him is appearance and not truth. (3) < Therefore >, according to Arius’ contentious argument, the Word cannot have received a heart either when he came—or a liver, flesh, entrails, bones, or anything like that. In the last analysis all of these are allegories and meant figuratively—or else he just received a blob for a body, without any insides. (4) In that case, how could he eat and drink? Forget it! For if the Father speaks of a soul and a heart but in his case the meaning is allegorical and the expression figurative, then < the Arians should also take the heart* > figuratively in the Son’s case, since they deny that the Son has taken a soul.
51,5 But if, when pressed, they cannot deny Christ’s heart because they admit that the Lord received the whole bodily frame, therefore, given their < admission > that there are two different “hearts,” the one admitted to be real and the other allegorical, in the case of Christ’s “soul” the word is accurate, and not allegorical or figurative. (6) However, since Christ’s human nature is complete in every respect—in body, soul, mind, heart, and everything human except sin—he naturally could do what men do, and yet be entirely complete in Godhead, with impassibility. (7) His Godhead cannot be less glorious than the Father’s perfection, but he will be made complete by his human nature and his thirst, hunger, drinking, eating, sleeping, discouragement, while his Godhead is impassible. And again their argument about this has failed, since Christ became flesh while being God.
52,1 But if they say, “If he was of the Father why did he become flesh?” our reply would be, “What do you say about the angels?” For it is plain to everyone that Arians admit the angels were made by the Son. (2) Indeed, they also blaspheme the Holy Spirit by venturing to say that he was created by the Son, although he is uncreate, proceeding from the Father and receiving of the Son. (3) Hence, if they dare to say this of the Holy Spirit, how much more will they be unable to deny in the case of the angels, who are created beings, that they have received their existence from the Only-begotten?
If, then, the angels he created were created spiritual but are his creation in spite of that, and, as his workmanship, are infinitely far below his essence and yet they have not taken flesh—what do you say about that? (4) Are they greater than the Son even though created by him? Or the Holy Spirit too? Why didn’t he come to flesh, put on flesh and become man—either the Holy Spirit of God or one of the holy angels? (5) The Son surely did not assume flesh because of an inferiority to the Father. In that case the angels would surely have assumed flesh, or even the Spirit. But since the Son, who is the Father’s wisdom, power and Word, had made all things himself with the Father and the Holy Spirit, he assumed flesh (6) to show that the reason for Adam’s transgression or disobedience was not that Adam was a creature or that God had made sin, but Adam’s own choice, so that [the Son] could carry his righteous judgment through as Isaiah said, “A bruised reed shall he not break, and smoking flax shall he not quench, till he shall carry the judgment through to victory, and in his name shall the gentiles hope”— as David said of him,” “Thou shalt be victorious when thou art judged.”
52,7 For he was judged in order to silence his opponents by judging justly; for no one will be able to oppose his righteous judgment. For he wore the body and kept it undefiled. For it was certainly not at the instance of the creator, who is not responsible for Adam’s sin, that that which was in man, that is, in Adam, from the beginning came to the point of becoming sin with the result that Adam sinned. The creator allowed Adam freedom of choice and each person is responsible for his own sin. (8) And thus, < although he was > not responsible [for sin], the divine Word, the creator, who with his Father and the Holy Spirit created man, the immortal and undefiled Word, became man of his own good pleasure, by some ineffable mystery of wisdom. And in his extreme loving kindness, under no compulsion but of his own free will, he assumed all his creature’s characteristics for his creature’s sake to “condemn sin in the flesh,” annul the curse on the cross, utterly destroy destruction in the grave, and by descending to hades with soul and Godhead make void the covenant with hades and break “the sting of death.” (9) But the ungrateful turn good things completely to bad and no longer thank the kind, perfect, good Son of a good Father for the things for which < one should > thank him. Instead they show ingratitude by attributing frailties to his Godhead, things they are not able to prove, since the truth is evident to everyone.
53,1 And now that these have been expounded I shall go on in turn to other arguments in succession. For they quote the text in the Gospel, “The Father who sent me is greater than I,” with a bad interpretation. In the first place it says, “The Father who sent me,” not, “the Father who created me.” (2) For all the sacred scriptures show his true sonship to the Father. They say, “The Father begot me,” “I came forth from the Father and am come,” “I am in the Father and the Father in me,” and, “the Father who sent me.” And nowhere have they said, “the Father who created me,” or, “the Father who made me.”
53,3 And why do they keep heaping up things that are not so? “The Father who sent me is greater than I”—what could be more proper? More cogent? More necessary? More fitting? Who but his true Son, the One begotten of him, is the proper person to glorify the Father? (4) For the Father glorifies the Son and the Son glorifies the Father. And the Son glorifies the Father both to be an example to us, and < for the sake > of his glorification of the Father as one union and glory [with himself ], teaching us that his honour is the Father’s honour, as he has said, “He that honours not the Son as he honours the Father, the wrath of God abides upon him.”
53,5 But in what way do Arians think that he is “greater?” In bulk? Time? Height? Age? Worth? Which of these is in God, for us to conceive of? Time does not apply to the Godhead, so that < the > Son who is begotten of the Father but not in time, might be considered inferior. Nor does the Godhead allow for advancement, or the Son might achieve the Father’s greatness by advancing to it. (6) For if the Son of God is called the Son of God as the result of advancement, then he [once] had many equals and advanced by being called higher in rank, but was [once] lower than someone who outranked him. (7) But the scripture says, “Who shall be likened unto the Lord among the sons of God?” since all things are termed sons colloquially, but he alone is Son by nature, not grace—for “He hath found out every path of understanding, and none shall be declared his equal.”
But what do Arians say? “The Father surpasses the Son in elevation.” (8) Where is the Godhead located? Or is it bounded by space so that “bigger” might be shown by circumference? <Forget it>, “God is spirit!” And their heretical invention is a complete failure. Let us pass this by too, beloved, and go on to the rest of their arguments.
54,1 For they say that the sender is not like the sent, but that sender and sent differ in power because the one sends, while the other is sent. And if the meaning of the truth were what they say, the whole subject of our knowledge could not be traced to one unity of truth, power and Godhead. (2) For if two were meeting or two were sending, the Son would no longer be a son, but a brother—who had another brother, no longer a father. But if they were related by identity or adoption, or if one were to send himself, or if the two sent together or arrived together, they would show that there are two Godheads and not one unity. (3) But here there is a Sender and a Sent, showing that there is one Source of all good things, the Father; but next after the Source comes One who—to correspond with his name of Son and Word, and not with any other—is one Source springing from a Source, the Son come forth, ever with the Father but begotten < without beginning and not in time as the scripture says* >, “For with thee is the source of life.” (4) And to show the same of the Holy Spirit < it adds >, “In thy light shall we see light,” showing that the Father is light, the Son is the Father’s light, and the Holy Spirit is light and a Source springing from a Source, [that is], from the Father and the Only-begotten—the Holy Spirit. “For out of his belly shall flow rivers of water springing up unto eternal life; but,” says the Gospel, “he said this of the Holy Spirit.”
54,5 And again, to teach his disciples his co-essentiality with the Father, he says, “If any man open to me, I and my Father will come in and make our abode with him.” And [here] he no longer said, “I shall be sent by my Father,” but, “I and my Father will < make our abode > with him,” with the Son knocking and the Father entering with him, so that it is everlasting, and neither is the Father separated from the Son nor the Son separated from his Father. (6) And so he says in another passage, “I am the way, and by me shall they go in unto the Father.” And lest it be thought that < he > is less than the Father because they go in to the Father by him, he says, “No man can come unto me unless my heavenly Father draw him.” (7) Thus the Father brings him to the Son and the Son brings him to the Father, but brings him in the Holy Spirit. The Trinity is forever eternal, one unity of Godhead, three Perfects, one Godhead. And the Arians’ argument has failed.
55,1 But again, they say, “Why did Christ tell his disciples, ‘I go unto my Father and your Father, and unto my God and your God’? If he acknowledges him as his God, how can he be his equal or legitimately begotten of him as Son?”—showing that they are entirely ignorant of God, and in no way “illumined by the light of the Gospel.”
55,2 Always, and in every generation, one who has examined and investigated will know the meaning of the truth of the perfect knowledge of our Saviour and of his equality with the Father. But these people itch from being wrapped up in Jewish thinking, and are annoyed with the Son of God just as the Jews said, “For no evil deed do we stone you, but that you, being a man, calls yourself Son of God, making yourself equal with God.” (3) They are annoyed too because they have gotten into the same state as the Jews and Pharisees, and will not call the Son equal to the Sire who begot him.
55,4 For observe the accuracy of the scriptures! The sacred scripture never used this expression before the incarnation. The Father says “Let us make man” to the Son, calling the Son his fellow creator and showing that he is his own Son and equal. (5) And the Son never said, “my God and your God,” < before the incarnation, but* >, “And Adam heard the voice of God walking in the garden, and < “God said to Noah >, Make to thyself an ark of acacia wood,” and, “The Lord rained from the Lord,” and “The Lord said unto Moses, I am the God of Abraham and the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob”; and David says, “The Lord said unto my Lord, Sit thou on my right hand.” And the Lord never said, “my God and your God.”
55,6 But when he had taken our body, “appeared on earth and con- sorted with men,” and become one of us, then he said “my God and your God, and my Father and your Father” to his disciples, whom it was his duty to be like in all respects except sin: “my Father” by nature in the Godhead, and “your Father” by grace because of me, in the adoption. “My God” because I have taken your flesh, and “your God” by nature and in truth. (7) And thus everything is crystal clear, and nothing in the sacred scripture is contradictory or has any taint of death, as the Arians pretend in concocting their wicked arguments. But again, I think this has been sufficiently explained, and shall next go on to the rest.
56,1 For again, they say that the Holy Spirit is the creature of a creature because of, “By the Son all things were made,” as the scripture says– stupidly seizing on certain lines, not reading the text as it is worded but, with wrong suppositions and apart from the text misinterpreting, in terms of their wrong supposition, something that has been correctly said. (2) For the divine Gospel did not say this of the Holy Spirit. It said of all created things that anything which is created was made through the Word and by the Word. If you read further, the line, “All things were made through him, and without him was not one thing made,” includes the words, “that was made,” to make it clear that all [created] things were made by him, and not a single thing without him.
56,3 Then again it says, “In him was life.” For here too the sequence of St. John’s [expressions] must be made complete as he goes on with his confessions that non-existent things < have been made > in existent ones. For “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” (4) Since [he says] “was,” and was,” and “In him was life,” and “that was the true light,” and “He was in the world” and all < the rest* >, the blessed John, by the Holy Spirit’s inspiration, is making it plain with this “was” that “All that was made, was made through him.” But the Maker of all the things that were made is prior to them all.
56,5 However, the scripture says that all things were made through him but did not say what the things that were made were. For there was never any supposition of wickedness, so that no one could suppose things that were not true and blaspheme God’s changeless and unalterable Holy Spirit. (6) It is on their account that the Lord says, “If any man say a word against the Son of Man, it shall be forgiven him. But if any man say aught against the Holy Spirit it shall not be forgiven him, neither here nor in the world to come.” For the whole of their argument is ridiculous.
56,7 One might, however, answer them in terms of their blasphemous supposition and say, “You hotshot sophists and word-twisters who want to count God’s Holy Spirit as a creature on account of, ‘All things were made through him,’ because of ‘all things,’ although the Holy Spirit is never counted in with ‘all things!’ (8) You should suppose, then, in terms of your blasphemous supposition—if, indeed, there is anyone else who is worse than you—that the Father too was made through the Son.” For the line which says that all things were made through him is comprehensive. (9) But if it is blasphemous to think any such thing of the Father, and foolish, the like applies to those who suspect it of the Holy Spirit, who belongs with the Father and the Son.
56,10 For if he were were a thing that is made he would not be reckoned in with the uncreated Father and the uncreated Son. But because he is uncreated he is so reckoned; the scripture said, “Go baptize in the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.” And how can the Spirit be created when it is testified of him that “He proceeded from the Father” and “received of me,” and through him man’s full salvation, and everything required for the human nature, was made complete. (11) For scripture says of the Lord, “God anointed him with the Holy Spirit.” But the Father would not have anointed Christ’s human nature, which had been united in one Godhead with the divine Word, with a creature. However, since the Trinity is one, three Perfects, one Godhead, this needed to be done for the Son in the dispensation of the incarnation, so that the Trinity, completely glorified in all things, would be observed to be < one >. I have cited no [mere] one or two texts against all the sects in my discussions of the Spirit, to prove that he is the Spirit of God, glorified with the Father and the Son, uncreated, changeless and perfect. And, in its turn, the argument against themselves that the trouble-makers < have invented > about him has proved a failure.
57,1 But again, let’s devote our attention to their other arguments. For they say in turn, though they do not have a sound understanding of the text, that the Saviour himself said, “Why call me good? There is one good, God,” and thereby separated himself from the essence and subsistence of the Father.
But this whole thing is foolish. (2) If they do not think that the One who has done so much for us is good, who else is < good? But what > could be worse than this, that the One who gave his life for the sheep; who went willingly to the passion although he was the impassible God; who secured the forgiveness of sins for us; who worked cures in all Israel; who, of his own goodness, brought such a numerous people, in good- ness, to the Father—that the Promoter of goodness and Lord of peace, the Father’s good word begotten on high of the good Father, the Giver of food to all flesh, the Author of all goodness for men and all his creatures, is not considered good by the Arians!
57,3 And since they have managed to forget it, they do not know that he threw the questioner’s word back at him in order to humble the over- weening insolence in him. A scribal type was boasting that he had exactly fulfilled the requirements of the Law. And to parade his own righteousness and goodness he said, “Good Master, what [more could] I do to inherit eternal life?” (4) And since he thought of himself as < endowed > with such great righteousness, the Lord, wishing to ascribe all goodness to God so that no fleshly being would indulge in vanity, said, “Why call me good? None is good save God.” By saying such a thing when he was what he was and as great as he was, he intended to humble the arrogance of the speaker with his supposed righteousness, and expose what was in his heart, for with his lips he called him a good teacher, but he did not abide by his good teaching.
57,5 And that he is good he teaches us himself by saying, “Many good works have I done among you; for which of them do ye stone me?” To whom is this not clear and plain as day, particularly as many of his creatures are, and are called good, as the sacred scripture says? (6) See here, the sacred text tells of many good things. It says, “Saul, the son of Kish, of the tribe of Benjamin, was a good man, and from the shoulders and upward higher than all the people.”
And “Samuel” was “good with the Lord and men” And “The last word was better than the beginning.” And, “Open thy good treasure, the heavenly.” (7) But since these are creatures, and are shown by himself and his creatures to be good, how can it not be indisputably good to confess that the author of their being is good? But < not > to prolong the discussion of this—I have spoken extensively of it everywhere—I shall once again go on to the next, and give the explanation of each expression.
58,1 But these people who will try anything cite some other texts to sow the suspicion that there are defects in their Redeemer—if, indeed, they have been redeemed. For when the mother of the sons of Zebedee approached Jesus and begged that the one son should sit on his right and the other on his left when he came in his kingdom, he told them, “Ye know not what ye ask. Are ye able to drink the cup that I shall drink of? And they said, Yea. We are able. And he said to them, Ye shall drink of my cup, but to sit on my right hand or on my left is not mine to give, but is for them for whom it is prepared of my Father.” (2) “Do you see,” they say, “how he has no authority independent of the Father’s, who has the authority to give it to anyone he chooses?”
And who in his right mind would think such a thing? If the Son does not have authority, who does? “For,” he says, “the Father giveth life to the dead, and thus he hath granted the Son to give life to whom he will”; and, “All things have been delivered unto me of my Father.” (3) Who could have any further doubt? But his sacred, wise saying is meant to show that nothing is awarded from respect of persons, but in accord with merit. For to grant is the Lord’s prerogative, but he grants to each according to his deserts. Each who has done something right receives < from the Lord > in accordance with his labor; and not mere giving is his sole prerogative, but giving to one who has made himself worthy.
58,4 For I venture to say that giving [as such] is not the Lord’s prerogative although he has the power, but he does not wish [simply] to give. Nor is it the Holy Spirit’s although the Holy Spirit has the power to give, as the scripture says, “To one is given wisdom by the Spirit, to another divers kinds of tongues by the same Spirit, to another the interpretation of tongues, to another power, to another teaching, but it is one Spirit that divides to every man as he will.” And it didn’t say, “as he is directed,” but, “as he will.” (5) And “The Son giveth life to whom he will,” and “The Father calls whom he will to the Son.” And again, neither the Father and the Son, nor the Holy Spirit, calls, gives, provides or awards from respect of persons, but as each person renders himself worthy; this is the meaning of, “It is not mine to give, but if you toil it will be prepared for you by my Father.” But < I shall give* > at the End, for “I am the life.” And I shall go right on to the others.
59,1 They say, “Why do you say that he is of the Father’s perfect Godhead? See here, the apostle says of him that ‘God hath raised him from the dead.’ If he needs God’s help to raise him from the dead, then there is one person who raises him by his power; but the other person, the one who is raised by the power of the One who is able to do this, is inferior.”
59,2 And how long must I tire myself out with the silly ideas of the people who give themselves headaches? Who raised Lazarus? Who raised the widow’s son at Nain? Who said, “Qumi talitha, Get up, child,” to the daughter of the ruler of the synagogue? On whose name did the apostles call, and the dead were raised?
I suppose the apostles < said this to show* > that all this had been done at the Father’s good pleasure, by the will of the Son and with the consent of the Holy Spirit, because the apostles were in a dispute with Jews who thought that they were preaching apostasy from the God of the Law, and because they had received from the Holy Spirit the knowledge that sects would set Christ in opposition to the will of the Father. (4) But this is not said to show any defect or weakness, or any difference between the divine Word’s essence and the Father’s. There are no differences. See, in the first instance, how the angel describes him when he asks Mary and the others, “Why seek ye the living among the dead?” You see, he who was alive had risen in his Godhead and flesh; he was not with the dead. And what does the angel say to them? “He is risen. He is not here.” He didn’t say, “God has raised him and is he not here?” but to show the power of the Savior he said that he had risen even living.
59,5 And again, he himself told his disciples before his passion, “Behold, we go up to Jerusalem, and the Son of Man shall be delivered to be crucified, and the third day he shall rise again.” (6) And he didn’t say, “< God > will raise him.” But he was plainly showing beforehand the control [over resurrection] of his power by saying, “I have power to lay my soul down, and power to take it.” (7) But since he had the power, why couldn’t he raise himself? When the apostle wrote, “God raised him from the dead,” he said it to show that nothing in the economy of salvation has taken place without the Father’s will. For the apostle himself says in another passage, “Even though he died from weakness, he lives by power.”
59,8 If I could only pick the brains of these people who know all about the scripture, [and find] which weakness the Only-begotten had—[the Only-begotten] by whom the heaven has been spread out; by whom the sun was lit; (9) by whom the stars shone; by whom all things have been made from nothing. Which weakness does the apostle mean? Isn’t it the weakness the Word assumed when he came in our flesh, putting it on so as to bear our weakness? As the prophet’s oracle about him says, “He took our weaknesses and bare our illnesses.” He who is life and the impassible God died because of our weakness in the flesh which we had made weaker [yet], but he lives by power. “For the Word is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword.” (10) Thus he died from weak- ness and lives by the power of his Godhead; but he lives in our flesh in which he accepted the passion. And it was because of this dispensation that the apostle said, “God raised him from the dead,” to give token of the Father’s good pleasure.
60,1 They cite still another text from the Gospel according to Luke, one which is marvellous, choice, and in every way most useful. Which text? When the Lord, by his own will, was about to enter upon the passion, taking the disciples into the mount at that time he “went apart from them about a stone’s cast, and went and prayed and said, “Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me that I drink it not. Nevertheless, not what I will, but what thou wilt.”
60,2 And first, once more these people pretend and say, “Do you see how he speaks coaxingly and shows a will that is distinguished from the Father’s by saying, ‘Not what I will, but what thou wilt?’ How can it be the same essence,” they ask, “when there is one will in him, but another in the Father?”
And they are ignorant of the entire meaning of this. For this is why the apostle said, “O the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God!” (3) And how could Christ be speaking of a will of his own beside the Father’s will when he himself tells his disciples, “My soul is troubled, and what shall I say, ‘Father, save me from this hour?’ ” as though he were speaking in advance about the text [in question], and using the words, “What shall I say, ‘Father, save me from this hour?’ ” in a way that was equivocal? He means, “Should I say [such a thing as] this? For for this cause came I unto this hour.” (4) He came, not unwillingly but willingly. For earlier he says, “I have a cup to drink, and how eager I am to drink it! And I have a baptism to be baptized with, and what will I if I were already baptized!” If he is willing and eager, then, and says that he has come for this purpose, how can he be showing that he has one will, and the Father has another? (5) And, being kindly and willing to spare Abraham’s seed, since he would be betrayed by Israel he was putting in a word for the people.
However, it was the Father’s will that his provision be executed in this way by the children of Israel, although they were accessory to their own betrayal of the Son and not compelled to it by God; and the Son’s will was not different from the Father’s. (6) But it was essential that he show this even here to ascribe the whole of the divine unity to the Father, leaving no division between the one unity and human nature.
61,1 And Arius adds next that “ ‘being in agony while he prayed,’ ” < as > we find in the Gospel according to Luke, and “ ‘He sweat, and his sweat was as it were drops of blood falling to the ground. And there appeared an angel of the Lord strengthening him.’ ” (2) Those nit-pickers jump up at once as though they had found an opening against an enemy, and add, “Do you see that he even needed the strength of angels? An angel strengthened him, for he was in agony.”
And they have no idea that if he did not have all these things, including “Not my will, but thine,” the human nature of Christ would have been an illusion; and if Christ had not been in agony and sweat had not poured from his body, there would be some sense in the theory of the unreality of the human nature that Manichaeans and Marcionites yap about, < since Christ would be an apparition > and not absolutely real. (3) But < he did > all these things to make our salvation sure < because > he assumed everything < that is ours >, and as concessions said certain things, in truth, not deceit, that reflected human frailty. < For example >, [he said] “not my will,” to show the reality of his flesh, confound those who say he has no human mind, and frustrate the people who deny that he has flesh.
61,4 For every divine word, standing firm amid the sons of darkness, confounds the darkness but enlightens the sons of the truth. See how much helpful material there is in this saying. No sweat comes from bodiless beings. In this way he showed that his flesh was real and not an apparition. < And > without a soul and a mind there can be no agony of a flesh that is united to the Godhead. By experiencing agony he showed that he had soul, body and mind at once, which is why he could show agony. (5) And again, by saying, “not my will, but thine,” he revealed a mind truly human though without sin.
For his Godhead is always in the Father, the Father is in the Son, and the Son is in the Holy Spirit, perfectly possessing all things, and the Son’s intent is no different from the Father’s nor the Father’s from the Son’s, or the Holy Spirit’s from the Father’s and the Son’s. (6) If the Son desires what the Father does not will, he will indeed be a mere man as you say and, from inferiority, < subject > to the will of the Father. But this is not the case, never think it! By speaking of things that are reflective of human frailty he shows the reality of his incarnation and the perfection of his human nature, so that he will be our salvation in every way and we will not perceive one thing in place of another and be deprived of the truth.
62,1 But as to his being seen to be strengthened by angels, what could be more proper than this? What more necessary? See, we have found the application of the passage in the great Song written by Moses, “Let my utterance be awaited as the rain,” and shortly afterwards, “Let all the sons of God worship him, and all the angels of God strengthen him”— (2) not so that the angels may give him strength. He did not need the strengthening of the angels. They “strengthen” him in the sense of giving him the due acknowledgment of his strength. (3) Indeed, for all our weakness we too have often blessed God, often strengthened God—not because God needs our blessing, but we acknowledge the power of his blessing. And we say, giving the full particulars, “Thine is the power, thine the might, thine the honour, thine the glory, thine the blessing, thine the strength, thine the power.” (4) Not that we provide God with strength by saying “Thine is the might, thine the power, thine the blessing,” not that we have given God power, have blessed God. But by corroboration and confirmation we have confessed the power (δύναμιν) of God and ascribed the strength (ἰσχύν) to God.
62,5 Thus the angel too was amazed at that time, and astonished at the abundance of his Master’s loving kindness because, although he was God, and was worshiped in heaven with the Father, and served by his own angels, he submitted to such a < depth* > [of humiliation] as to come willingly by his own desire and assume flesh—(6) and not only this, but < also > submitted to suffering, even to consignment to the cross, for his own creation, the human race, “tasting death, even the death of the cross,” so that humankind could win the trophy against death through him, “destroy him that had the power of death, even the devil,” and “triumph over every rule and authority.”
62,7 And so, in amazement and awe, to glorify and praise his Master as he stood in such an arena and with such remarkable deeds, the angel said to him, “Thine is the worship, thine the might, thine the power, thine the strength,” in fulfilment of the words that Moses had written, “Let all God’s angels give him strength.”
62,8 And you see, servants of Christ and sons of God’s holy church and orthodox faith, that there is nothing obscure or knotty in the sacred scrip- ture; everything has been written marvellously and marvellously fulfilled for our salvation. However, in their hostility to God’s only-begotten Son and the Holy Spirit, Arians, like enemies, think up all sorts of plans and subtleties. (9) But far be it from us to rely on human subtleties. We must keep our minds sound to glorify our Master and not conceive of any defect in him. For if the One who came to save all things has any defect, how can creation be saved from its own defects?
63,1 Again, in their search for some text or other against the Saviour, this new crop of Jews who are springing up again—for they are votaries of the Jewish opinion and no different from Jews except merely in name—they seize, like adversaries, on something else “to entangle him in his talk,” as the Gospel has said. (2) “On the cross,” they say, he said, ‘Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani, that is, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?’ ” And “You see him piteously begging and wailing,” they say, “and saying, ‘Why hast thou forsaken me?’ ” (3) And those whose minds are torpid from the poison of Arius’ madness, and who have no knowledge of God, do not know that all the human frailties in the Lord are to be confessed [as residing] in his true human nature.
63,4 In the first place, they do not realize that they are jumping from one thing to another in their thinking about him and have no fixed posi- tion. How can they, when they are not sound in mind? For they will some- times call the Saviour himself Lord, Christ, before all ages, Master of angels and archangels, through whom all things were made—principalities and authorities, angels and archangels, the heavens and all things, the earth, all humanity and everything on earth, the sea and all that is in it. (5) How foolish of them to say such glorious things of him and not realize that < He who > in his Godhead < is > before the ages cannot say such a thing as, “My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?” here in the person of his Godhead—He by whom heaven and earth were made, and angels and archangels, and in a word, all things visible and invisible.
63,6 When was the Son forsaken by the Father, and when was the Son not in the Father and the Father not in the Son? For he came to earth as the Son and the divine Word, and yet he touched heaven, and all his enemies were filled with his glory. And he was in Mary and was made man, and yet filled all things by his power. (7) How could such a person, and One of such greatness, say piteously, “Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani, that is, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?” in his divine nature, though it was he himself who said, “I shall come again and shall not leave you desolate, but I shall come unto you.” And he says again in another passage, “Verily I say unto you, All ye shall be offended because of me this night, and ye shall all leave me alone, and yet I am not alone, but the Father who begot me is with me.” (8) And again, “I go, and I shall send unto you the Holy Spirit, the Paraclete, who proceeds from the Father and receives of me.” And again, in another passage, he says, “I knock, and if any man open to me, we shall come unto him, I and my Father, and make our abode with him.” This is as much as to say that he is not forsaken by the Father, but that the Father is always with the Son, just as the Holy Spirit is always with the Father and the Son.
64,1 “Well then,” they say, “what did he mean when he said, ‘My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?’ ” But who cannot see that the words are uttered in the person of his human nature, reflecting human frailty? (2) His human nature [said this], though not by itself. (He never spoke from a separate divine nature and a separate human nature, as though < he were > sometimes the one and sometimes the other. He spoke with his manhood united with his Godhead as one holiness and therefore possessed of perfect knowledge in it.) Appropriately for the manhood which had been united with God and joined to one divine nature, but which now saw its Godhead, with its soul, impelled to leave its holy body, it < pronounced the words > in the person of the Lord-man, that is, in the person of his human nature. (3) For the divine nature was about to accomplish all that the mystery of the passion involved and descend to the underworld with his soul, to secure the salvation there of all who had previously fallen asleep, I mean the holy patriarchs. Thus, when it was so impelled, Christ’s voice said, in the person of the human nature [speaking] to his divine nature itself, “My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?”
65,4 But this had to be, in order to fulfil, through him, the prophecies the sacred scriptures had made of him through his own prophets. And it was in fulfillments of the words against Hades which are said to Hades, seemingly by the man, so that though the archon Hades and Death intended to subdue a man he would unknowingly < seize > the < holy > Godhead < concealed > in the soul, and Hades himself would be subdued and death destroyed, fulfilling the saying, “Thou shalt not leave my soul in Hades, neither shalt thou suffer thine holy one so see corruption.”
65,5 For neither did the holy divine Word abandon the soul, nor was his soul abandoned in Hades. Unceasingly, the holy Trinity provides for all aspects of so great a mystery—the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, with the Son < become > fleshly but the Father incorporeal, and the Son, although unchangeable, incarnate by his own good pleasure and < made > flesh by the will of the incorporeal Holy Spirit. But all these provisions were made by the holy Trinity for the salvation of humankind.
66,1 And so, in turn, he says in another passage, “Why hast thou forsaken me?” and here he says, “I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.” For < his > body needed to spend the three days in the grave in order to fulfil the sayings, “And I was free among the dead” and “They cast me, the beloved, out like a loathed carcass.” This was also in fulfillments of “Thou shalt not suffer thine holy one to see corruption,” (to show his holiness through his body), and < “Thou shalt not leave my soul in Hades” >, (to show that his soul was not left in hades either). (2) For the divine Word was in it throughout his sojourn in Hades, in fulfilment of the apostle’s saying, “It was impossible for him to be holden of hades.”
66,3 And why does scripture say, “impossible,” except that Death and Hades was eager to detain a soul but that, because of his Godhead, it was impossible for his soul to be detained? But if his soul could not be detained because of his Godhead, how could, “My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?” be said in the person of his Godhead? (4) This saying was given in the person of the manhood, in terms of human frailty, to teach us that Christ was incarnate truly, and not in seeming or appearance.
66,5 But what arose from the earth, other than the body that had fallen asleep? “He is risen,” says the scripture, “he is not here.” And what was it that had arisen except a body? It was a body, then, that was in the grave, but the soul had departed with the divine Word. (6) And again, Christ accomplished his perfect resurrection all together, in the same Godhead, the same soul, the same holy body, and then united his whole self in one spiritual union—one union of Godhead, one provision, one fullness. In the ninety-second Psalm it says, “The Lord hath reigned, he hath put on comeliness,” meaning the divine Word’s entry from the heavens into the world having put on comeliness, that is, with the flesh that was born of a Virgin.
66,6 For since he seemed of little account to his unbelieving beholders comeliness was ascribed to him to show his power which, through the seeming weakness of the flesh, overcame the arbiter < of death. For he arose* > after abolishing < the curse* > of sin—that is, death—and after, in a comely fashion, accomplishing the entire provision for our salvation, after doing away with corruption and the curse, annulling the writ against us and the covenant with Hades, and making all the provisions for the salvation of humankind. (7) For directly after it says, “The Lord hath reigned, he hath put on comeliness,” the scripture makes a further addition and repeats it, saying, “The Lord hath put on, and hath been girded about, with strength.” This is to show that his first garment came from Mary, but that his further clothing the second time came from the resurrection of the dead; (8) for as the sacred scripture has said, he is “the firstborn from the dead.” This is why he adds a further assurance by this second donning of a garment and says, “The Lord hath put on, and hath been girded about, with strength.”
67,1 For as a person with his waist belted tightens his garment about his loins, making his appearance trimmer and bringing the garment close to his own skin, so Christ “girded on comeliness” for the first time because of his sojourn here in the flesh. But the second time he “put on strength,” as the scripture says, by rising from the dead. His manhood is no longer subject to suffering, no longer subject to scourging, can no longer be crucified, as the apostle said of him, “He is risen, he dies no more, death hath no more dominion over him.” (2) This is why it says, “He was girded”—[that is], by uniting his flesh with one Godhead, a single one- ness, < one > spirit, the divine and the bodily one as a spiritual whole, indissoluble. Thus, then, he entered where doors were barred, < proving > his grossness ethereal and his passibility impassible, for he had suffered in the flesh while retaining his impassibility. (3) [Even so] after entering he displayed bones and flesh, the mark of the lance and the marks of the nails, was felt by Thomas and seen by the disciples. But he entered where doors were barred to show that, for us men, he had made one spiritual unity of the whole of his saving work.
67,4 And why do I tire myself with so much talk? To say “the same things” often “is not grievous to me, but” for my readers < “it is safe.” Therefore* >, since I have often thought of < the same thing* > for your safety I have put it down as a way of getting through the savage attack of Arius’ thoughts, words and suppositions.
68,1 And now that I have likewise discussed this expression sufficiently, let me go on to the rest in order, by fully explaining most of their foolish- ness that comes to my mind, to show, from a few texts or even more, that for one who has the Holy Spirit and has received a sober mind from the Lord, nothing crooked can be suspected anywhere in the sacred scripture, and no sort of frailty in the Father, the Son or the Holy Spirit. (2) Everything has been said, in truth, in the sacred scripture, with entire perfection and with provision for every need and for what is required in every passage, by the Lord himself and his holy apostles and prophets whom he has sent.
68,3 For indeed, the Lord made a prophesy of this when he said, “Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani” in Hebrew. The Lord, come to the cross, was duly finishing the saying by saying what had been prophesied of him, “Eli, Eli,” in Hebrew as it had already been written; and [then], in adding the companion phrase he said, “lema sabachthani,” no longer in Hebrew but in Aramaic, so as to begin as it had been written of him but in going on change the rest of the line to another language. (4) This too he was doing to make a good provision. By saying, “Eli, Eli,” he meant to acknowledge that the words had been spoken of him by the prophet. But by saying the rest no longer in Hebrew but in Aramaic, he meant to humble < the pride > of those who boast of Hebrew, and to declare that other languages too are fit for the fulfilment of the oracles about him. (5) For he was now to extend the knowledge of himself to all nations, not just the Hebrews, as this whole series [of expressions] in the twenty-first Psalm indicates when, in the person of his human nature, it records all the frailty of his humanity.
68,6 But, come [to the cross], he was completely fulfilling the description himself, just as < every point > in the whole of the psalm, one after another, corresponds with the humanity of Christ which it is describing. It says, “And they parted my garments,” and, “They pierced my hands and my feet, they stared and looked upon me.” And as many other such things are said, which cannot possibly apply to his Godhead, but are said in the flesh—although the Godhead, impassibly and in truth, has made provision of them all.
69,1 But they leap up again, like mad dogs in the grip of some frenzy which, because of their frenzy, do not know their master and attack him first. When we tell them truly that the Lord in the Gospel said of his disciples, “Those whom thou hast given me, Father, I have kept in the world,” (2) and again, “Make them to be one in me, as I and thou are one,” they reply, “Can’t you see that in the words, ‘I am in the Father and the Father in me, and we two are one?’ he is not speaking of equality but of con- cord? (3) How could the disciples be in him by equality? But they could be in him by concord.”
And God’s truth refutes them completely at once, since the disciples could not do this, and it could not be said of them, if the Word had not come and shared their flesh, and united them in him for adoption as sons. (4) Thus everywhere in the Song of Songs, he calls his holy church “neighbour,” addresses her with his holy voice of arousal and admonition, and says, “Rise up and come, my neighbour, my fair one, my dove!” (5) And do you see how he calls her “neighbour?” But the church could not be called Christ’s “neighbour” if he had not come from above and drawn near to her, through the flesh with frailties like hers which he had taken, so as to gather those who had obediently drawn near him and call the human- ity which had become near to him his holy and spotless bride.
69,6 And this is why the Word, our Lord the Only-begotten, here prays the Father that his disciples may be in him, so that, when the disciples have been sanctified, he may join the kinship with him through the flesh which has become theirs by the Father’s good pleasure, into a oneness of good will and adoption and, in the Father’s Firstborn, they may have “enrollment with the firstborn in heaven.” (7) And lest anyone suppose that the Son has been changed from his Father’s glory by donning the flesh, to confirm their faith and knowledge of his truth, so that < no one > becomes suspicious of his servants and is deprived of his hope, he says, “that as I and thou are one, so these may be one. (8) For I and thou are one”—since < he is > God of God, and co-essential [with the Father] in Godhead.
69.9 And “We are one,” is not indicative of a unit. He did not say, “I am one,” but, “I and thou.” And “We are one” is said to confound Sabellius and his school, since Sabellius thinks that the Son and the Father are an identity and the Father and the Holy Spirit likewise. For that is why he said, “We are one,” and did not say, “I am one.” There are two Perfects, a Father and a Son, but one because of equality, by their < one > Godhead, one power and one likeness. (10) In the Godhead the Father and Son are one, in the manhood the Son and the disciples are one, brought to one union of adoption by his deigning to call the disciples to the ineffability of his lovingkindness. And once again there has been a refutation of those who in vain think wrongly of their Master.
70,1 But let me pass this text by too and examine the rest. Since they spend their time on syllogisms and nonsensical reasonings and, although they are men, try to out-argue God, the sophists, when they discover one text or another, jump right up. The prophet reproved them by saying, “Will someone trip God because you can trip me?”
70,2 Well, what do the great guys have to say now? The same talk- ing point which I explained earlier they [now] direct at me in the form of a query, “Did God beget the Son by willing it or without willing it?” I have shown that to God there is no future, (3) but that in him all things are complete at once. He does not will a thing first before doing it; nor does he do it without willing it or will a thing in preparation for it, and his preparation does not require will. (4) Thus with him his Offspring is always begotten with no beginning in time. It is always with the Father as an Offspring begotten, and never ceases to be such. Since I have repeated the argument here, I again make the statement that the Father did not beget the Son either by willing it or without willing it, but in his nature which transcends will. For the Son is < the offspring > of a nature beyond will and above all conception and supposition.
71,1 But these latter day disciples of Aristotle, as I said, invent another argument similar to this one. For they have imitated Aristotle’s poison and abandoned the harmlessness and meekness of the Holy Spirit, as the Lord says, “Learn of me, for I am meek and lowly in heart, and ye shall find rest for your souls.” (2) But these people have abandoned meekness and gone in for cleverness instead, taking up Aristotle and the other secular dialecticians. Contentious as they are, they go after the fruits of dialecticians but know no fruit of righteousness and have not been privileged to have the gift of the Holy Spirit within them.
71,3 Now here is what they say to us, when we tell them that the Son Who Is was with the Father Who Is—since the Father said to Moses, “Thou shalt say unto them, He Who Is hath sent me,” and again, the Gospel says of the Son that “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” If we tell them that He Who Is was with Him Who Is, they ask us, “Well now, was that which is begotten, or that which isn’t? If he ‘was,’ why was he begotten? But if he was begotten, how come he ‘was?’ ”
71,4 And < this > is the product of the same foolishness which is preoccupied with philosophical questions, has its head in the clouds, “meddles with things in the heavens, and does no good.”
For we shall ask them, “What gave you this idea of thinking these things?” (5) But if they tell us, “Our mind requires us to examine them,” we for our part shall say, “All right, you people, tell us, are you reasoning about your own affairs, or about God’s?”
Then they say, “We’re reasoning about God’s on our own initiative, as rational beings.”
“Well, isn’t God different from your condition, nature and essence?” “Yes,” they reply.
“Well, if God’s nature is different from yours, then in the first place your
nature can’t comprehend things about God that are incomprehensible. And in the second, it is an impiety to model God on yourselves, in terms of your own essence.”
71,6 For in our own case, something that does not exist is begotten [and then it exists]. For at one time we did not exist, but we were begot- ten by our fathers, who at one time did not exist either; and so it must be understood from the beginning, back to Adam. But Adam was made from the earth, and at one time earth did not exist. But the earth was made from nothing, since it did not always exist.
But God was always a Father. And whatever he was by nature, so he has begotten the Son. (7) He begot him as an everlasting [Son]—not as a brother to him but begotten of him, his like in nature—Lord of Lord, God of God, very God of very God. And whatever one concludes of the Father, so he must conclude of the Son; whatever he believes of the Son he must < also > hold of the Father. (8) For [the Son] says, “He that believeth not on the Son as he believeth on the Father, and honoureth < not > the Son as he honoureth the Father, the wrath of God abideth on him,” as we find in the Gospel.
And their idea of logic has failed in its turn. (9) For God, who is incomprehensible, has begotten incomprehensible God, before the ages and before time. And there is no interval between Son and Father; in perceiving a Father you simultaneously perceive a Son, and in naming a Son you simultaneously indicate a Father. For Son is perceived from the Father and Father is known from a Son. (10) How can there be Son if he has no Father? And how can there be a Father if he did not beget the Only-begotten? When can the Father not be called “Father,” or the Son not be called “Son”—so that people can perceive a Father who was without a son and later, as though he had managed an improvement, begot a son so that, after the begetting, the Father could be be called Father, with the perfect God who needs no improvement improving in Godhead?
72,1 Since they want to reject this curative drug and health-giving antidote, the foundation of the faith of God’s holy church, they make one more pretense and say, “Why the term, ‘essence?’ Why is the Son called “co-essential” with the Father? Which scripture has spoken of co-essentiality? Which apostle said anything about an ‘essence’ of God?”
But they do not know that “being” (ὑπόστασις) and “essence” mean the same thing. (2) Christ is Lord in his “being,” and “the brightness of the Father’s glory and the express image of his being.” Thus he is [the Father’s] essence—not an extraneous addition (περιουσία) to it but this existent thing itself (αὐτὸ τοῦτο τὸ ὄν), as Moses said when he spoke to the children of Israel, “He Who Is hath sent me.” “He Who Is” is that which is, but that which is is the existent essence. (3) On the other hand, “co-essential” does not mean “one” but by the “co” indicates two perfect entities. Yet the two do not differ from each other, nor are they different from their oneness. But if we have employed an < unscriptural > expression from motives of piety, to pin the truth down—(there can be no refutation whatever of heresy without the confession of the homoousion. (4) As a snake hates the smell of pitch, the exhalation of hartshorn, the odour of lignite and the incense of storax, so do Arius and Sabellius hate the statement of the true confession of the homoousion.) [But even if we have employed such an expression] we shall tell them all the same, (5) “Even though the expression is not in the sacred scriptures—indeed, it is plainly implied in the Law and by the Apostles and the Prophets, for ‘By two or three witnesses shall every word be established’—it is still permissible for us to employ a useful expression for piety’s sake, to safe- guard the holy faith.”
72,6 “But what do you mean, you people? Tell us, folks, what are you saying about the Father? Is the Father uncreated?” Of course they’ll say yes. Who is so < silly >as to doubt this? What sort of nut would suppose that the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ is not uncreated? You yourselves must surely admit that he is unbegotten, uncreated, and unoriginate. For he has no Father before him nor any limit to his years, nor any “beginning of days,” as the scripture says.
72,7 “Thus, if he has no beginning of time or end of time, it is agreed and unquestionable that he is uncreated—but nowhere does scripture say this of him. But even if it is not scriptural we are obliged, for piety’s sake, reverently to think and say this of him. (8) In the same way, even if it were not scriptural we would be compelled to speak of “homoousion” in our own language as an abbreviation—even though this might seem beyond us, and the discussion of God might appear to be beyond our powers. (9) But may the Lord himself pardon–not wishing to defend the Godhead which has no need of our support, but we must speak with piety and think with piety, or we perish.
73,1 “Well then, disciples of Arius, give us an answer! We all agree in saying that the Father is unbegotten and uncreated, and the expression is plainly a wonderful one. Where is it in scripture then? Show us the place! The Law has not said it, nor the prophets, nor a Gospel, nor the apostles. Thus if we may use an unscriptural expression with piety, and it is allowable when said for the glory of God, who can accuse us even if the homoousion were not in the scriptures, (2) since we have found a word with which we can confess the certainty of our salvation?” But there are texts [which, confirm the homoousion when] used with the help of pious reasoning, the ones I have listed above and many others. I shall also pass this expression by, however, and with God’s help tear open their other expressions and devices to which they have given voice for the entrapment of the innocent.
74,1 The same people say further, along with all the texts which, by bad guesswork, they debase from the Gospel and the Apostle: “As the apostle says next, and as it is found in the Epistle to the Corinthians, in the chapter on resurrection, (2) ‘Then cometh the end, when he shall have delivered the kingdom to God and his Father, when he shall have put down all rule and authority and power. For he must reign until he hath put all his enemies under his feet. The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death. Now when he saith that all things are in subjection under him, it is manifest that he is excepted that hath put all things in subjection under him. (3) Now when all things are put in subjection under him, then shall the Son himself be subject to him that hath put all things under him, that God may be all in all.’ ”
74,4 They seize on this passage, and with their customary hostility toward the Only-begotten take his ineffable, glorious Godhead away and say—foolishly, as I have often remarked—“You see that he says, ‘Then cometh the end, when he shall have delivered the kingdom to God and his Father, when he shall have put down < every rule and > all authority and power. For he must reign, until he hath put all his enemies under his feet.’ (5) But ‘must,’ ‘until,’ and, ‘when he shall deliver the kingdom,’ are the setting of a time.” And they blasphemously say that these are indications of the cessation and deposition of the one who is reigning < for he remains* > [in power only] until he delivers the kingdom to God and his Father.
74,6 And they do not know the sense of the truth to begin with. Because of the partaking of our flesh and blood by the Only-begotten his human frailties are dwelt on and mentioned in connection with his human nature, in addition to his glory—but not without his ever perfect and glorious Godhead which needs no enhancement of its glory but possesses glorification in itself and is perfection itself. (7) He himself gives an account of the two natures by saying of the more recent one, “Glorify thou me, Father, with the glory that I had with thee before the world was.” But when the Father proclaims the glory of the two natures, he says spiritually of the first, “I have glorified it,” to show its infinity; but he says, “And I will glorify it again,” of the newer nature because of the incarnation.
75,1 Now for the clarification, even here, of the things the apostle said when he set the truth about Christ down in two ways < and wrote “Son” because of his divine nature>, and “until he shall deliver the kingdom unto God and his Father” because of his human nature’s beginning in time. For the divinity of the Only-begotten was always with the Father— that is, the only-begotten divine Word who has proceeded from the Father without beginning and not in time. (2) Otherwise where is the fulfilment of the angel’s words, “The Spirit of the Lord shall come upon thee and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee?” For he said, “Thou shalt bear a son and shalt call his name Jesus” to Mary, to show that the divine Word had descended from on high, had taken flesh in this virgin’s womb and perfectly become man. (3) < And > so as not to separate his human perfection from his divine perfection he and told her with the addition of the word, “also,” “Therefore also that which shall be born of thee shall be called holy, the Son of God.”
Then < he says >, “God will give unto him the throne of his father David, and he shall reign over the house of Jacob unto the ages, and of his kingdom there shall be no end.” (4) Now what should those who do not know the life-giving scripture say, given that each of these is the opposite of the other—“He must reign until [some time]” and “He shall reign over the house of Jacob unto the ages,” (and he did not say merely, “unto the age,” but, “unto the ages.”)? And again, “when he shall have delivered the kingdom unto God and his Father,” standing in contrast with “and of his kingdom there shall be no end.” And yet both have said such things of the Lord and Christ < and > both are entirely trustworthy—the angel Gabriel is a holy being and the holy apostle inspired—(5) can the scripture, which is always truthful in all things, contradict itself? Never think it!
But as I said at the outset, because of the implications of the manhood Christ possesses all its natural accompaniments. (6) For if he ever hands his rule over to anyone, then he is not ruling now. But if he is not yet ruling, why is it that he is worshiped continually by the angels and arch- angels, before and during his advent in the flesh, as the scripture says of him, “When he brings the first begotten into the world, it says, angels of God worship him.” And again, “He sat down at the right hand of the Father.” And again, “Unto him every knee shall bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth.”
75,7 Thus he who is worshiped < by > all, always rules. What shall we say then, since the Son who rules always–from the beginning, now and forever—has not yet handed the rule over to the Father? (8) Is the Father excluded from his rule? Never think it! The Son is ruling together with the Father, and the Father with the Son and the Holy Spirit.
But what are they saying? “ ‘When he delivers the kingdom to God and his Father does he himself cease to rule?’ ” Never think it! (9) Where is the application of, “Of his kingdom there shall be no end.” [He shall deliver the kingdom” is said] to show that nothing which has been found or is to be found in the Son opposes or differs from the unity of the Father, and from < the > one will of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. (10) For even here we see that “When he shall have delivered the kingdom to God and his Father, when he shall have put down all rule and authority and power” is said of the Son in the sense of the Son himself delivering the kingdom, and putting down all rule and so on. And “He must reign until he hath put all his enemies under his feet” is said of the Son doing all things, possessing all sovereignty and authority, and with the kingdom delivering his subjects to the Father.
76,1 Then next he again switches to another person, that of the Father in turn, subjecting all things to the Son, and says, “He hath put all things in subjection under his feet. The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death.” But he is no longer speaking only in the person of the Father or only in the person of the Son, but right in between the persons of the Father and the Son, and he says, “The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death.”
76,2 “But when he saith that all things have been put under him,” < and so on >. If I could only ask them in whose person that “He saith” is said! For the profundity of God’s mysteries judges the fleshly spiritually. “The fleshly man receives not the things of the Spirit, for they are foolishness unto him.” (3) For here, if the Father is speaking to the Son, the action is defective; the Son made things subject to the Father. But if “when he saith < that > all things are put in subjection under him” is said in the per- son of the Son, the thought is unsatisfactory because it assumes futurity in God, either in the Father or in the Son.
76,4 But who is it that is saying that all things have been made subject? For it has not said, “when they say”; if it had said, “when they say,” it could apply either to the angels or to the subjects. (5) But since it has previously shown the Son subjecting all things and handing them over to the Father, and the Father subjecting all things to the Son, careful exegetes are left with the person of the Holy Spirit. And therefore, after the person of the Father and the person of the Son, the scripture has unequivocally given an intimation of the person of the Holy Spirit who always declares and teaches the truths about the Father and the Son—to keep the full knowledge of the Trinity, and of the additional glory of [Christ’s] human nature, from being defectively stated. (6) Then he says, “The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death.” But one who is destroyed has been curbed and can no longer do what he does, or even exist; he has been destroyed.
77,1 Well, what have those who have no knowledge of the scriptures to say about this? “If this is what the text said, we must suppose that the Son will cease to rule.”
But [if we say this] we shall commit an impiety and < venture > to rank him with God’s subjects, particularly after he ceases to do what he has been doing. (2) Perish the thought! No one who believes and truly hopes in Christ will think of saying or hearing anything unbecoming his glory, as the Arians futilely think that they can. The sacred scripture teaches everything < by saying >, “When he saith, All things are put in subjection under him, it is manifest that he is excepted who hath put all things in subjection under him. But when all things are put in subjection under him, then shall also the Son himself be subject unto him that hath put all things under him.”
77,3 This means that the statement that was originally made by the angel, linked [with it] by the similarity of the expression, fittingly and with perfect clarity reveals the statement’s whole meaning. The angel said a similar thing, mentioning the Son to begin with and then with an addition which referred to the human nature, showing the union [of the natures]: “Therefore that which is born of thee shall also be called holy, the Son of God.” (4) For this and similar reasons, “because that which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God,” “the Son himself will be subject to him that hath put all things under him” so that Christ’s flesh will no longer be fleshly in power but united in [one union with the Godhead], and reign with the Father and Holy Spirit, “of whose kingdom there shall be no end.”
77,5 And it is since he has risen that “that God may be all in all” has had its inception, for his flesh has been spiritually united with his one Godhead. But since he says, “Do this in remembrance of me until the com- ing of the Son of Man,” and “Ye shall see him in like manner as ye have seen him taken up—” then finally, when all things have been fulfilled and nothing left unfulfilled of those things < that are to be > brought back to his Godhead, the prophecy, “that God may be all in all” < will come true* >.
77,6 < But > the text says, < “God,” > so that there may be no distinction [between the manhood and the Godhead]. For there is no distinction, to make polytheism impossible, for there is one glory. For the Son is not now out of the Father’s control, like a warlord, or under his control like a slave with no freedom of action: [he is] < the One > begotten of the Father, of the same nature and the same Godhead. Nor will he be subject to the Father then from defect or inferiority, or by compulsion or cessation [of rule], (7) but as a true only-begotten Son who rules with the Father forever, and who both elevates the whole creation to a single oneness and honourable reward and teaches this to his holy church, “so that God may be all in all.”3 For there is one Godhead, one sovereignty and one glory of Father, Son and Holy Spirit, with the Father fittingly honoured by the Son as a true son, and by the Holy Spirit as not different from the Father and the Son. (8) And let this exclude even the words of those who blaspheme God’s Son and Holy Spirit, and the thoughts of their enmity to the Son and the Holy Spirit. And once more we have detected their evil devices and thwarted them.
78,1 Once more they select certain expressions from the Gospel and say, “Why can ‘The Son do nothing of himself, but what he sees the Father do?’ ” And they do not understand what is said at the beginning [of the scripture]; although it was surely the Father, he did not create something first, and the Son manufacture something afterwards. (2) Which heaven did the Father make all by himself, for the Son to take the example of the first heaven as his model, and manufacture something like it?
But none of the inventors of evil can prove this. “In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth,” but he says at the same time, in the beginning at the creation, “Let us make man in our image and after our likeness.” And he didn’t say, “Come here and I’ll show you how to do it.” (3) And then it says, “And God made the man,” and it didn’t say, “God made him and showed the Son how to make the man.” The Son was no ignoramus, that he needed to learn a trade first and then put it into practice.
78,4 But when our Lord had come in his turn, put on flesh, become man and lived in our midst, he conversed with the Jews who thought that he was abolishing the Father’s commandments and, desiring to elevate their minds, so that they would not attend to his manhood alone, said, “The Son does naught but that which he sees the Father do.” His intent was to show that the work of the Son is the work of the Father, and that the Father is pleased with the Son’s execution of all his work.
78,5 And they will also be harried like this < about > each of the other texts in its turn, when they blunder into them like beasts and are con- founded by the lightning flash of the Word, the truth. “Flash thy lightning and scatter them, send forth thine arrows and confound them.” (79,1) For we have to deal with the following text, which they select next and quote from the Gospel, “For the Father loveth the Son and shows him all that he does, and greater works than these shall he show him, that ye may marvel”; and again, “The Father raiseth the dead and giveth them life. Likewise also doth the Son give life to whom he will”; and further, “The Father judges no man but hath given all judgment to the Son, that all may honour the Son as they honour the Father.” (2) But take note, Arius, at the end of my debate with you, of the conclusion to which the discourse has come. Christ did not say, “that some may say yes and some say no,” but, “that all may honour the Son as they honour the Father.” Stop dishonouring the Son, then, so as not to dishonour the Father! If you choose to ascribe an inferiority in the Son or suppose some defect in him, does the supposition not extend to the Father as well? For it is part of your impudence that you think < meanly > of the Son, and do not honour him as you honour the Father.
79,3 Why, indeed, does the Father also give him [this]? Tell me what he says, wonder man! “That the Son may give life to whom he will”—he didn’t say, “to whom he is told.” There were two particular reasons why the Son needed to receive all this from the Father, though not to be less than the Father. (4) First, it was to direct our minds upward to a single oneness of Godhead, the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, and not to lower the human reason to divisions and a multiplicity of gods, but to raise it to a single oneness. But second, it was for the transformation of the glory of Christ’s human nature and its union with his Godhead.
79,5 For since he came to gladden his disciples with the promise he gave, “There be some standing here that will not taste death till they have seen the Son of Man coming in his glory,” “and on the eighth day,” as the Gospel says—(6) or, as the other says, “after six days.” For the evangelists do not say some things in place of others but, although there is one exact truth, it is constantly safeguarded so that people will have no excuse to stumble at the essentials, since “The mind of man is continually bent on evil from his youth.” (7) This is the reason why one evangelist said, “on the eighth day.” Part of the day on which the Saviour said this was left over, and the evangelist counted from that day and hour—if the day was declining, about the ninth hour or the tenth. And again, since the thing was done at about the third or fourth hour of the eighth day, this day was called the eighth. (8) But the other evangelist provides a safe- guard and says, “after six days.” He did not count on the day when the Saviour said the word to the disciples, or the day on which he did the work, but the six full days in between.
80,1 But since I have come to the discussion of the saying, I shall give the explanation. “He took Peter and James and John and brought them into the mount, and was transfigured, and his countenance shone as the sun”—his countenance in the flesh united with his Godhead—and “his raiment shone white as snow.” Plainly, this means the flesh taken from Mary, which was of our stock. (2) And it was changed to glory, the added glory of the Godhead, the honour, perfection and heavenly glory which his flesh did not have at the beginning, but which it < was > receiving here in its union with the divine Word.
80,3 In this way understand the words we quoted earlier, “He hath given all judgment to the Son”—because he has given him authority “to give life to whom he will”—as proof, first of all, of the unity of the divine nature, and of its one will which ascribes the whole of goodness to the Father and to one First Principle and Godhead. For there are three perfect entities but one Godhead, the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit; and in its turn the human nature [of Christ] which, along with the divine nature, receives the gift, authority and perfection of rank which is granted it by the Father and the Son, and which < has been united > in a single spiritual oneness of Godhead.
81,1 And we have barely managed to get past this stormy place and through this whole attack by savage beasts—the wild heaving of the bil- lows and the fearful foaming of the seas. Because, in my inadequacy, I received the power and the grace from God, I have burned my opponents’ spears and shields thanks to the right reasoning in my mind, have broken the bows of the opposition, < and have been victorious* > over this serpent, the many-headed ugliness of the hydra, (2) so that I can sing < the > song of triumph in God, “Let us sing to the Lord, for he is gloriously magnified; horse and rider hath he hurled into the sea.”
I have broken the dragon’s head above “the water that goes softly,” of which these present day fellow heirs with the Jews would have no part. The prophet had them in mind when he said, (3) “Because ye refuse the water of Siloam that goeth softly, and prefer to have the king Rezin and Tabeel the son of Remaliah, behold, the Lord brings upon you the mighty water of the river, the king of Assyria,” and so on. (4) But we have received help in the Lord, the “saliva spat on the ground” by his true flesh, and with the spittle have received “the clay” smeared “on our eyes,” so that we who were once in ignorance now know the truth, and have gone and washed in “Siloam,” which means “the Sent.” That is, [we have washed] in his human nature and perfect Godhead, and since we now see we no longer deny the Lord, even though the partisans of Arius and successors of the Jews cast us out of the synagogue. (5) For like the Jews, the Arians have agreed that whoever confesses the Lord must “be cast out of the synagogue,” showing that one who has recovered his sight is a reproach to those who cannot see. For if their synagogue were not all blind, they would not eject someone whose eyes had been opened.
81,6 Let us thank the Lord, then, that we have recovered our sight and confess the Lord and, if we perform the work of the commandments, have healed our hurts; and that we have trod upon the serpent and broken the head of the dragon by the power of God, to whom be glory, honor and might, the Father in the Son, and the Son in the Father with the Holy Spirit, unto the ages of ages. Amen.
81,7 But leaving this hydra we have slain, with its seven heads and many segments, let us go on to the rest as usual, beloved, calling on God, our constant help, to take the same care of us and of any who desire to read this work, for the cure of those who have been bitten, and the correction of those who have already joined the ranks of the evil.