« PreviousContinue »
“ being, as it were, a verbal explication of what reason had 66 first silently thought, disposed, and resolved within it« self.”
4. If there still remains any doubt of this matter, there is a farther argument to be urged, which may be justly looked upon as clear, full, and decisive in the case. Had these Fathers believed that the Λόγος, or Word, was an attribute only, or power, &c. before the procession, or generation, which they speak of; then it would follow, that the Son began first to be, and was properly a creature, ουκ όντων, in their opinion; and that procession was but another word for being created. But these writers do expressly guard against any such notion. n Novatian very clearly distinguishes between procession and creation. Athenagoras is still more express to the same purpose; odeclaring that the Son was not then made, but had existed in the Father, as the Λόγος, or Word, from all eternity.
Justin Martyr is the first and the most considerable of those writers; and therefore it will be proper to examine his sentiments with a more particular care and exactness. I have selected the most material passages I could find, which may help to give us a just idea of his doctrine; and have placed them in distinct columns in the P margin. It
n Si homo tantummodo Christus, quomodo dicit, “ Ego ex Deo prodii," Joh. xvi. cum constat, hominem a Deo factum esse, non ex Deo processisse ? c. xxii.
• Ούχ ως γενόμενον εξ αρχής γαρ ο Θεός νους αΐδιος ών, είχεν αυτός εν εαυτώ τον λόγον αϊδίως λογικός ών. C. Χ. p. 39.
P 1. Ο μεν γάρ Μωϋσής, ο ών, έφη» και η νος γάρ αγέννητος και άφθαρτος Θεός, δε πλάτων, το όν. εκάτερον δε των έρη- | και διά τούτο Θιός έσι. Dial. p. 21. μένων τω αεί όντι Θεώ προσήκειν φαίνε | Jebb. ται: αυτός γάρ έσι μόνος και αεί ών γένεσιν 3. 'Εγώ γαρ, φησίν, είμι ο ών. αντιδε μη έχων -ευρήσομεν γαρ αυτόν | διασέλλων εαυτόν δηλονότι ο ών τους μη τον μεν αγέννητον αΐδιον είναι λίγοντα» || oύσιν. Paren. p. 87. τους δε γεννητούς ή δημιουργησούς-γινο | 4. "Όνομα τώ πάντων πατρί 9ετών, μένες και απολλυμένες. Paren. p. 90, | αγεννήσω όντι, εκ έσιν. και γάρ αν και ονό91. Ox.
μασι προσαγορεύηται, πρεσβύτερον έχει 2. “Όσα γάρ έσι μετά τον Θεόν και έσαι | τον θίμενον το όνομα, το δε Πατήρ, και ποτέ, ταύτα φύσιν φθαρτήν έχειν, και Η Θεός, και Κτίσης, και Κύριος, και Δισπότης, οιά τε εξαφανισθήναι και μη είναι ότι, μό- Η ουκ ονόματά έσιν άλλ' εκ των ευποιών
would signify little to translate them, because the arguments arising from them are proper only to scholars. I have distinguished the several citations by figures, for the more convenient referring to them.
I. I observe, first, (see notes 1, 2.) that he joins αγέννητος with άφθαρτος and αΐδιος ; opposing them to φθαρτος, γενόμενος, δημιουργητός, and απολλύμενος: here therefore 9 αγέννητος is not considered as the personal character of the Father, and as signifying unbegotten; but as it belongs to the το θείον, and denotes eternal, uncreated, immutable ex1stence. Either Justin must have believed that αγέννητος, in this latter sense, is applicable to the Son; or else he must have supposed him not only γεννητος, but γενόμενος, δημιουργητος, and φθαρτος also, which must appear highly absurd to any one who has ever considered Justin's writ
2. I observe (see note 2.) that God's being αγέννητος and
και των έργων προσρήσεις. Αpol. ii. p. 13. I Compare the citations before given Θιώ δε ούτε και τιθείς όνομα, προϋπήρχεν, | in p. 27. ότι αυτός εαυτόν ονομάζειν ώήθη δεϊν. είς I 6. ο δε υιος εκείνου, και μόνος λεγόμενος και μόνος υπάρχων. Paren. p. 87. Η κυρίως υιός, ο λόγος προ των ποιημάτων apdaptos is supposed, as it were, the very ground and foundation of his being God; on account of which he is Eds; and without which, consequently, he could not be eós. If therefore the Abyos be not, in this sense, áybvintos and äb Jagtos, he is not eòs, according to Justin Martyr: and yet no man is more express than Justin, every where; in making the Son eos, and insisting very much upon it.
5. Ιουδαίοι έν ήγησάμενοι αεί τον πα- } και συνών, και γεννώμενος ότι την αρχή, τίρα των όλων λελαληκέναι τώ Μωσεϊ, δι' αυτού πάντα έκτισε και εκόσμησε, Χριτη λαλήσαντος αυτό όντος υιε τε Θεού, σος μεν κατά το κεχρίσθαι και κοσμήσαι δς και άγγελος και απόστολος κέκληται, δι | τα πάντα δί αυτού τον Θεόν, λέγεται, καίως ελέγχονται και δια σε προφητικού όνομα και αυτό περιέχον άγνωσον σημαπνεύματος, και δι αυτού τύ Χριστού, ως | σίαν· όν τρόπον και το Θιός προσαγόούτε τον πατέρα ούτε τον υιον έγνωσαν Π ρευμα εκ όνομά έσιν, αλλά πράγματος
--ης και λόγος πρωτότοκος ών του | δυσεξηγήτε έμφυτος τη φύσει των ανθρώΘεού, και Θεός υπάρχει. Αpol. 1. p. σων δόξα. Αροί. ii. p. 14. Ox. 122, 123.
1 I need but hint that the words αγέννητος and γένητος, with double or single », have been used very promiscuously in authors; and hardly came to be accurately distinguished, till the Arian controversy gave occasion for it. See Suicer's Thesaurus, upon the ecclesiastical use of these words; and Cudworth for profane writers, p. 253, 254. and Montfaucon admon. in Athan. Decret. Syn. N. p. 207. The Son is properly éyévntos, as well as the Father; so Ignatius, so Irenæus, so Origen expressly styles him; and AtheAagoras's š ysvóuevos is to the same effect. The similitude of the word and sound was, very probably, the chief reason why the title of ayantos was not oftener applied to the Son, which omission however is compensated by other equivalent expressions.
3. Justin makes ó ŵy to answer to the Platonists' tò óv. (see note 1.) And either of them equivalent to đei ūv, and that to yéveri un šxwv, uncreated, immutable, necessarilyexisting. Now compare note 5. and two more citations given above, p. 27. and from thence it is manifest that Justin makes the Móyos to be ó cv, in his own proper person. And he gives the reason here why, or on what account, he might justly style himself Oos; (and the same must hold for o cv;) it is because he is Ozos, as God's Son; 8pcoToToxos By Toũ Đeoũ, s Đeos • sex • I.
4. Justin Martyr, having taken notice that the Father had properly no name, (see not. 4, 6.) as having nothing antecedent or preexistent, does immediately after repeat the observation of having no name, and applies it to the Son; observing that neither he, properly, has any name, but only some titles or appellations given him, from what he did in time; particularly from his coming forth to create and put into beautiful order the whole system of things. This seems to insinuate his coeternity with the Father; and the more so, because Justin observes, at the same time, that he is emphatically Son of the Father, (o μόνος λεγόμενος κυρίως υιός,) and coexistent (συνων), with his Father before the world; though begotten, or sent forth, in time, to create the universe. These considerations convince me, that Justin as well as Athenagoras taught the
? Compare Dial. p. 364, 183, 371, 184. ed. Jebb. I add for illustration these words of Cyril. "Otig å v iz sysvátou aj & plagte gyeréventai, esto WYTWs ã o aproy, si éyénroy. Cyril. Alex. Thesaur. p. 34. Much to the same purpose is that of Philo before Justin, "OS, TŪ sidiou aogos uv, ig vayans og æúrós isov apJagros. Phil. de Conf. Lingu. p. 326.
. OF SOME QUERIES. III strict coeternity of the Son; which is equally true of all the other writers.
Besides this, the several s similitudes, which these authors used to illustrate the nature of that procession, such as the sun and its rays, the fountain and its streams, the root and its branches, one fire lighting another, and the like, manifestly show that they never dreamed of the Son's being created. Then, the care they took lest any one should imagine there was any division of the Father's substance, and their inculcating that he was prolatus, non separatus, brought forth, but not separated from the Father, demonstrate their meaning to be, that here was no production of a new substance, but an emanation, manifestation, or procession of what was before. Farther, their declaring that, though he proceeded from the Father, he was still in the Father, (taken together with the maxim, that “nothing is in God but what is God,”') sets the matter beyond all reasonable scruple. In a word; as they all held the consubstantiality of the Son with the Father, which is as clear as the light, in their writings; they must have been the most inconsistent men in the world, had they thought that the procession, or generation, of the Son was a creation, or new production, of him; or had they not firmly believed that he existed, the living and substantial Word, from all eternity.
Justin Martyr seems to have spoke the sense of all, in saying, “ That the Abyos coexisted with the Father before “ the creatures; and was then begotten, when the Father • at first created and put into beautiful order the frame of “ things.” See the passage above u. The emperor Con
• Justin. M. Dial. p. 183, 373.Jebb. Athenagoras, p. 40, 96. Ox. ed. 'Tatian, c. viii. p. 21, 22. Ox. ed. Tertull. Apol. c. 21. adv. Prax. c. 8. Hippolytus contr. Noet. c. xi. p. 13. contr. Jud. p. 4. Fabric. vol. 2.
N.B. Athenagoras's words are, in strictness, meant of the Holy Ghost only, in both places. But the reason being the same for one as the other, they are equally applicable to either; and it is thus only I would be undere stood, wherever I apply either of the passages to the Son.
• Vid. Bull. D. F. N. p. 198. * P. 109. Note 6.
stantine afterwards expresses the same thought something more fully and distinctly, thus. “ x The Son, who was “ always in the Father, was begotten, or rather proceeded “ forth, for the orderly and ornamental methodising of “ the creation.” I choose to follow the sense, rather than the strict letter. Whether those writers went upon any solid reasons, in assigning such or such parts, in the work of creation, to Father, Son, or Holy Ghost, is not very material. It is manifest they supposed the whole Trinity to be concerned in it; and to create, as it were, in concert. Their ascribing the orderly adjustment and beautifying part to the Son, seems to have been in allusion to his names of λόγος, and σοφία, and φως. In respect of the last of them, Hippolytus supposes the generation to be posterior to the creation, upon God's saying, “Let there 66 be light.” Then did the Son proceed püs éx pwrós. y Tertullian seems to have had the same thought; and perhaps 2 Origen. Athenagoras likewise supposes the procession to be after the creating of the unformed mass of things. And yet nothing is plainer than that a all these writers believed the prior existence of the Son; and that things were at first created by him, as well as afterwards adorned and regulated. In short, whatever the Father is supposed to have done, was by his Son and Holy Spirit; therefore frequently styled manus Patris : but the aúlevric, the designing part, was thought most properly to be reserved to the Father, as the first Person. These are things not to
* 'Eyevan, pãrãoy di argoña. Jev avtòs, évtor: év tā natpi öv, ivi Thy Tây ir avršyoyevnévwy doaxóouno.v. Apud Gelas. Act. Syn. Nic. part. iii. p. 58.
5 Contr. Prax. c. vii. 12.
• As to Athenagoras, vid. supra. Tertullian says : Deum immutabilem et informabilem credi necesse est, ut æternum ; quodcunque transfiguratur in aliud, desinit esse quod fuerat, et incipit esse quod non erat. Deus autem peque desinit esse, neque aliud potest esse; Sermo autem Deus, &c. Contr. Prax. c. 27. Hippolytus hath these words : IIetei ouraïdios, adv. Jud. p. 4. rids isolncev, contr. Noet. p. 16. 'Asi gde ihn śv dón Deo perts, tã idéo aveuróépxwv yevutogi argo Warròs aiūros, xai xgóve, s tñs rõ xóque xaraboañs. Fabric. vol. ii. p. 29. Origen we have seen before.