Two Ancient Christologies p. 29

Home / Two Ancient Christologies p. 29

Further, we must observe that Malchion affirms that in Jesus Christ there must have been a “composition” (σύνθεσις) of the Logos and His body, a “concurrence” (συνδρομή) of the Logos and what is of the Virgin, a “weaving together” (συμπλοκή) of God and man, so that He, like ourselves who consist of body and what is in the body, is a “composite Being” (σύνθετον ζῶον) and the Logos Himself is “part of the whole” (μέρος τοῦ ὅλου). Thus does Malchion develop the teaching of his master on the unity on the unity of Christ’s Person. If we understand him aright, it is not that he would deny that our Lord’s manhood is complete in his composition on the Person of the Logos; in expressing himself, in this way, his purpose is, rather, to uphold against the idea of “division” that of the unitio of the Godhead and manhood in the Person of the Logos__the idea, that is, which is summed up in his statement that Jesus Christ, qui ex Deo Verbo et humano corpore, quod est ex semine David, unus factus est, naquaquam ulterius aliqua sed unitate subsistens. As we shall see, Apollinarius and his followers, and Cyril himself, use the same expressions, and that with the same purpose in view.

There is a further point in connection with the teaching of these Origenists on the unity of Christ’s Person: seemingly, they would attribute all the actions and sayings of Jesus Christ, without distinction, to the incarnate Logos Himself__to the one Person, that is, at once God and Man. Thus the Bishops can say that God who bore the manhood was partaker of human sufferings, and that the manhood was not shut out from the divine works; in another place, they declare that it was God who was performing the signs and wonders recorded in the Gospels, and that it was “the Same” who, having become partaker of flesh and blood, was tempted in all points like as we are, yet without sin. But, while they would thus say that both the miracles and the sufferings are attributed to the Logos as He has become man, it seems likely, if not they, at any rate Malchion their spokesman would draw a distinction between what belongs to the Logos in His incarnate state and what belongs to Him in His eternal being. What we have already seen that this thought appears in Origen: it is to be found, too, in the doctrine of the later Alexandrines.