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in Psal. 48. Albinus, lib. 1. in Johan. cap. 11. Damascen. lib. 3. De fide, cap. 15. 19. Anselm, quod Deus Homo, lib. duo. Guil. Parisiensis, lib. Cur Deus Homo. Some especial testimonies we may produce in confirmation of what we have discoursed in the places directed unto. There is one of them, one of the most ancient, the most learned, and most holy of them, who hath so fully delivered his thoughts concerning this mystery, as that I shall principally make use of his testimony herein.
It belonged unto the wisdom and righteousness of God, that Satan should be conquered and subdued in and by the same nature which he had prevailed against, by his suggestion and temptation. To this purpose that holy writer speaks, lib. 3. cap. 20. which, because his words are cited by Theodoret, Dial. 2. I shall transcribe them from thence, as free from the injuries of his barbarous translator: "Ηνωσεν ούν καθώς προέφαμεν τον άνθρωπον τω θεώ, ει γαρ μή άνθρωπος ήνίκησιν τον αντίπαλον του ανθρώπου, ούκ άν δικαίως ένικήθη ο εχθρος, πάλιν τε, ει μη ο θεός εδωρήσατο την σωτηρίαν, ούκ άν βεβαίως έχομεν αυτήν, και ει μη συνηνώθη ο άνθρωπος τω θεώ ούκ άν ηδυνήθη μετασχειν της αφθαρσίας. "Έδει γαρ τον μεσίτης του θεού τε και ανθρώπων, δια της ιδίας προς εκατέρους οικειότητος εις φιλίαν και όμένοιαν τους αμφοτέρους συνηγαγείν. Words plainly divine, an illustrious testimony of the faith of the ancient church, and expressive of the principal mystery of the gospel. “Wherefore, as we said before, he united man unto God. For if man had not overcome the adversary of men, the enemy had not been justly conquered ; and, on the other hand, if God had not given and granted salvation, we could never have a firm undefeasible possession of it; and if man had not been united unto God, he could not have been partaker of immortality. It behoved, therefore, the Mediator between God and man, by his own participation of the
nature of each of them, to bring them both into friendship and agreement with each other.' And to the same purpose, speaking of the wisdom of God in our redemption by Christ, with respect unto the conquest of the devil, lib. 5. cap. I. · Potens in omnibus Dei Verbum, et non deficiens in sua justitia, juste etiam adversus ipsam conversus est apostasiam, ea quæ sunt sua redimens, ab eo, non cum vi, quemadmodum ille initio dominabitur nostri, ea quæ non erant sua insatiabiliter rapiens--Suo igitur sanguine redimente nos Domino, et dante animam suam pro anima nostra, et carnem suam pro carnibus nostris,' &c. Again divinely; 'The all-powerful Word of God no way defective in righteousness, set himself against the apostacy justly also; redeeming from him (Satan, the head of the apostacy) the things which were his own--not with force, as he bare rule over us, insatiably making rapine of what was not his own--but he, the Lord, redeeming us with his own blood, giving his soul for our soul, and his flesh for ours, wrought out our deliverance.' These things are at large insisted on in the ensuing discourse.
It belongs unto this great mystery, and is a fruit of divine wisdom, that our deliverance should be wrought in and by the same nature, wherein and whereby we were ruined. The reasons hereof, and the glory of God therein, are at large discoursed in the ensuing treatise. To the same purpose speaks the same holy writer, lib. 5. cap. 14. “Non in semetipso recapitulasset hæc Dominus, nisi ipse caro et sanguis secundum principalem plasmationem factus fuisset; salvans in semetipso in fine, illud quod perierat in principio in Adam. Si autem ob alteram quandam dispositionem Dominus incarnatus est, et ex altera substantia carnem attulit, non ergo in semetipso recapitulatus est hominem, adhuc etiam nec caro dici potest habuit ergo et ipse car
nem et sanguinem, non alteram quandam, sed ipsam principalem Patris plasmationem in se recapitulans, exquirens id quod perierat.' And to the same purpose, lib. 5. cap. 1. Neque enim vere esset sanguinem et carnem habens, per quam nos redemit, nisi antiquam plasmationem Adæ in seipsum recapitulasset.' That which these passages give testimony unto, is what we have discoursed concerning the necessity of our redemption in and by the nature that sinned ; and yet withal, that it should be free from all that contagion which invaded our nature by the fall. And these things are divinely expressed. Our Lord,' saith he, 'had not gathered up these things in himself, had not he been made flesh and blood, according unto its original creation.' (The reader may observe, that none of the ancient writers do so frequently express the fall of Adam, by our apostacy from God, and our recovery by a recapitulation in Christ, as Irenæus. His recapitulation being nothing but the avakepalaiwoic mentioned by the apostle, Eph. i. 10. and he here affirms, that, unto this end, the Lord was made flesh; 'secundum principalem plasmationem,' as his words are rendered; that is plainly, the original creation of our nature in innocency, uprightness, purity, and righteousness.) 'So he saved in himself in the end, what perished in Adam at the beginning. (The same nature, in and by the same nature.) `For if the Lord had been incarnate, for any other disposition' (that is, cause, reason, or end), and had brought flesh from any other substance' (that is, celestial or etherial, as the Gnostics imagined), ‘he had not recovered men, brought our nature unto a head in himself, nor could he have been said to be flesh. He therefore himself had flesh and blood, not of any other kind; but he took to himself that which was originally created of the Father, seeking that which was lost.' The same is observed by
Austin, lib. de fide, ad Petrum Diaconum. Sic igitur Christum Dei Filium, id est, unam ex Trinitate personam, Deum verum crede, ut divinitatem ejus de natura Patris natam esse non dubites; et sic eum verum hominem crede, et ejus carnem, non cælestis, non aeriæ, non alterius cujusquam putes esse naturæ, sed ejus cujus est omnium caro; id est, quam ipse Deus, homini primo de terra plasmavit, et cæteris hominibus plasmat.'
So believe Christ the Son of God, that is, one person of the Trinity, to be the true God, that you doubt not but that his divinity was born' (by eternal generation) of the nature of the Father; and so believe him to be a true man, that you suppose not his flesh to be aerial, or heavenly, or of any other nature, but of that which is the flesh of men ; that is, which God himself formed in the first man of the earth, and which he forms in all other men. That which he speaks of one person of the Trinity, hath respect unto the heretical opinion of Hormisda, the bishop of Rome, who contended that it was unlawful to say, that one person of the Trinity was incarnate, and persecuted some Scythian monks, men not unlearned about it, who were strenuously defended by Maxentius, one of them.
It carrieth in it a great condecency unto divine wisdom, that man should be restored unto the image of God, by him who was the essential image of the Father, as is declared in our discourse; and that he was made like unto us, that we might be made like unto him, and unto God through him. So speaks the same Irenæus, lib. 5. Præfat. Verbum Dei Jesus Christus, qui propter immensam suam dilectionem, factus est quod sumus nos, ut nos perficeret quod est ipse.' 'Jesus Christ the Word of God, who from his own infinite love was made what we are, that he might make us what he is; that is, by the restoration of the image of God in us. And again, lib. 3. cap. 20. “Fi
lius Dei existens apud Patrem, et homo factus, longam hominum expositionem in seipso recapitulavit; in compendio nobis salutem præstans, ut quod perdideramus in Adam, id est, secundum imaginem et similitudinem esse Dei, hoc in Christo Jesu reciperemus, quia enim non erat possibile qui semel victus fuerat et elisus per inobedientiam, replasmare et obtinere brabium victoriæ; iterum autem impossibile erat ut salutem perciperet, qui sub peccato ceciderat, utraque operatus est filius Verbum Dei existens, a Patre descendens et incarnatus, usque ad mortem descendens, et dispensationem consummans salutis nostræ.' · Being the Son of God with the Father, and being made man, he reconciled or gathered up in himself the long continued exposing of men' (unto sin and judgment), · bringing in salvation in this compendious way, in this summary of it, that what we had lost in Adam, that is, our being in the image and likeness of God, that we should recover in Christ. For it was not possible that man that had been once conquered, and broken by disobedience, should by himself be reformed, and obtain the crown of victory; nor was it again possible, that he should recover salvation who had fallen under sin. Both were wrought by the Son, the Word of God, who descending from the Father, and being incarnate, submitted himself to death, perfecting the dispensation of our salvation.'
And Clemens Alexandrinus to the same purpose; Adhort. ad Gentes. Nai puue o doyoc o tov Okov ävopwπος γενομένος, ίνα δε και συ παρα ανθρώπου μάθης, πη ποτε άρα άνθρωπος γένηται θεός. «The Word of God was made man, that thou mightest learn of a man, how man may become' (as) God.' And Ambrose, in Psal. cxviii. Octon. 8. “Imago, id est, Verbum Dei, ad eum qui est ad imaginem hoc est, hominem venit, et quærit imago eum qui est ad similitudinem, ut iterum signet, ut iterum confirmet, quia amisit quod accepit.' • The