« PreviousContinue »
Ad Autolyc. 1. 2.
Apol. 1. c. 38.
Of the Word or Son of God, which was made very Man.
THE Son, which is the Word of the Father, begotten from everlasting of the Father, the very and eternal God, of one substance with the Father, took Man's nature in the womb of the blessed Virgin, of her substance: so that two whole and perfect natures, that is to say, the Godhead and Manhood, were joined together in one Person, never to be divided, whereof is one Christ, very God, and very Man; who truly suffered, was crucified, dead and buried, to reconcile his Father to us, and to be a sacrifice, not only for original guilt, but also for actual sins of men.
The Son, &c.] The second Person in the Trinity is that Word, which was declared by St. John, Ch. i. 1. In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
See Theophilus of Antioch. "God having his Word "in himself, begot him with his Wisdom, producing him "before all things."-And Justin Martyr." The Word, being the first-begotten of God, is also God, and hereto"fore appeared to Moses, and the rest of the Prophets, in "the likeness of fire, and in an incorporeal figure."Adv. Hær. And Irenæus. "Know ye, who are void of understanding, "that Jesus, who suffered for us, and who dwelt among us, " even he himself is the Word of God."-And Origen. Contra Cel- "Let our accusers know, that he whom we think and sum, l. 3. p. believe to be from the beginning God, and the Son of 135. "God, is the very Word, the very Wisdom, and the very "Truth." And again. "He who was the Maker of this "universe, is the Son of God."-And Tertullian.
1. 1. c. 1.
Ib. l. 6. p. 308.
Adv. Gentes, c. 21.
say that he came forth from God, and that he so came "forth by generation, and therefore that he is called the Son, and God, by reason of the unity of substance: for
"the Spirit is also God."-That which came forth from "God is God, and the Son of God, and both these are "One."-And St. Cyprian. "He is the Power of God, De Idol. "his Reason, his Wisdom, and his Glory."
Begotten from everlasting] Begotten indeed, or else he would not be a Son; but from everlasting, or else he would "not be God." See Heb. i. 5-12. Unto which of the angels said he at any time, Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee? And again, I will be to Him a Father, and He shall be to me a Son? And again, when he bringeth in the First-begotten into the world, he saith, And let all the angels of God worship him. And of the angels he saith, Who maketh his angels spirits, and his ministers a flame of fire. But unto the Son he saith, Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever; a sceptre of righteousness is the sceptre of thy kingdom.-And, Thou, Lord, in the beginning hast laid the foundation of the earth, and the heavens are the works of thine hands: They shall perish, but thou remainest; and they all shall wax old as doth a garment; and as a vesture shalt thou fold them up, and they shall be changed: But thou art the same, and thy years shall not fail. And, Rev. xxii. 13. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last. And, Isa. xliv. 6. Thus saith the Lord the King of Israel, and his Redeemer the Lord of hosts, I am the first, and I am the last, and besides me there is no God. And, John x. 30. I and the Father are One.
See also Clement of Rome. "The sceptre of God's ma- Ad. Cor. jesty, which is our Lord Christ Jesus, though endued c. 16. 66 with power, came not in the boasting of pride and arro
gance." And Ignatius. "I glorify Jesus Christ, who is In Epist. "God-our Lord, who is indeed of the family of David ad. Smyrn. according to the flesh; the Son of God, truly begotten
tes, p. 12.
"of a Virgin."-And Clement of Alexandria. "Our Lord, Quis div. "as he is God, foreknew both what questions he should salv. c. 6. "be asked, and what answers any one would give him." And Arnobius. "Should then any blustering, peevish, Adv. Gen" and enraged person say, Is that Christ then a God? our answer will be, He is a God, and even a God who " controls the interior powers and faculties of man.” Very God,] That is, not metaphorically, but properly, so called. See Rom. ix. 5. Christ, who is over all, God blessed for ever. Amen.
Of one substance, &c.] Godhead with the Father.
That is, of one and the same
Apol. 1. c. 38.
Art. II. Bulli Judic. Eccl. Cath. et Fid. Nic. Def. Scott's Christian Life, Part II. Ch. 7. Sect. 1. Cave's Dissert. de Euseb. Arianismo. Prideaux's Fasc. Cont. C. 2. Q. 3, 4. Tillotson's Sermons on Christ's Divinity.
In the womb, &c.] Since God hath promised that the seed of the woman shall bruise the Serpent's head, (Gen. iii. 15.) it was necessary that he should be born of a Virgin, that so he might not be the seed of man as all other men are.
See Justin Martyr. "Now, in the times of your empire, he was a man begotten of a Virgin, according to Contra Cel- the counsel of the Father."-And Origen. "We say
sum, l. 3. p. 135.
Adv. Gentes, c. 21.
carpum. Contra Cel
sum, l. 6. p. 308.
"that his mortal body, and the human soul in it, partook " of the Godhead not only by a communication with that Word, but by as strict and entire an union as could be "therewith."-And Tertullian. "That Ray of God, as "had always been foretold, descending into a Virgin, and "in her womb becoming organized flesh, is born God"Man, or God and Man together."-And St. Cyprian. "He descends into a Virgin, and puts on flesh, by the cooperation of the Holy Ghost. God is mixed and joined together with Man: He is our God: He is Christ."
Two natures,] See Rev. i. 5, 6. 17, 18. Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first-begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth. Unto Him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood, and hath made us kings and priests unto God and his Father; to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen. -He laid his right-hand upon me, saying unto me, Fear not; I am the first and the last: I am he that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death. And Acts xx. 28. The church of God, which he purchased with his own blood. See also Irenæus. "Expect Him who is before all time, "eternal, invisible, yet visible for our sakes; not capable "of being touched, impassible, and yet for our sakes pas"sible."-And Origen. "It is not to be wondered at, "that the soul of Jesus is said to be united to so great a "Son of God, no more to be separated from him."
Joined together] The two natures, the Divine and the Human, are indeed joined together in Christ, but not confounded; and from these two natures, each of which still remains entire, is made one Person, of which, thus united, that is often predicated or spoken, which is only proper to one of the natures. Thus God is said to have shed
his blood, Acts xx. 28. and the Man Christ Jesus is proposed to be worshipped by the angels, Heb. i. 6. This sort of predication, or this manner of expression, is called, A Communication of Idioms: but the conjunction of the two natures is termed, The Hypostatic union, concerning which, Nestorius first, and then Eutyches, have shamefully erred; the former by dividing the Person, and the latter by confounding the two natures. An effectual stop was put to both those errors, in four words, by the Council of Calcedon, which taught that Jesus Christ is one and the same in two Natures, dovYXÚTWS, ἀτρέπτως, ἀδιαιρέτως, ἀχωρίστως, that is, without Confusion or Change of Natures, against Eutyches; and without Division or Separation of them, against Nestorius.
See Field of the Church, Book V. Ch. 12, 13. Pearson on the Creed, Art. III. and IV. Scott's Christian Life, Part II. Chap. 7, Sect. 1. Nelson on the Feast of the Annunciation. Hooker's Eccl. Pol. B. V. Sect. 51, &c.
Who truly suffered, &c.] That is, according to his human nature; for as to his Divine nature, he was impassible. See Matt. xxvii. See also Clement of Rome. Ad Cor. "Christ our Lord, by the will of God, gave his blood c. 49. Ad Smyrn. "for us, and his fiesh for our flesh, and his soul for our "souls." And Ignatius. "His flesh was truly pierced "with nails for us, under Pontius Pilate and Herod the "Tetrarch." See also Pearson on the Creed, Art. IV. Nelson's Fasts, Good-Friday.
To reconcile his Father to us] Or, according to the Scripture's usual manner of speaking, To reconcile us to his Father. Whether this be expressed after the one one way or the other, it comes to the same thing, as Pearson in his Exposition of the Creed (p. 364, 365.) has proved against Socinus. This is certain, that Christ by his death has procured for us the Divine favour; for he, lest mankind, who upon the account of their sins were obnoxious to the Divine justice, should utterly perish, offered himself as an expiatory sacrifice to God; from whence he is said (Matt. xx. 28.) Sovvai τǹv 4vxǹv avtoõ λúτρov ȧvτì TOλdwv, to give his life a ransom for many; and, 1 Tim. ii. 6. it is said that he gave himself a ransom for all (ὁ δοὺς ἑαυτὸν ἀντίλυτρον ὑπὲρ πάντων.) See also Eph. ii. 16, 17, 18. That he might reconcile both (Jews and Gentiles) unto God in one body by the cross, having slain the enmity thereby: He came, and preached peace
pum. Ibid. Apol. 1. c. 88.
salv. c. 17.
to you which were afar off, and to them that were nigh. For through him we have an access by one Spirit unto the Father.
See also Ignatius. "All these things he suffered for us, that we might be saved." And again, "He under"went all sorts of sufferings for our sakes."-And Justin Martyr. "He bore to be set at nought, and to suffer, "for those who believe in him."-And Clement of Alexandria. "For this reason he came down from heaven, " and for this he put on man, that being measured according to the weakness of us whom he loved, he might measure to us again according to his own power: " and being now to be sacrificed for us, and now giving "himself for the price of our redemption, he leaves us a "new covenant."-And St. Cyprian. "Christ, the Me"diator between two, puts on man, that he may bring man to the Father. Christ would be what man is, "that man might be what Christ is."
See also Outram de Sacrificiis, L. II. Grotius de Satisfactione Christi. Stillingfleet of the Sufferings of Christ. Scott's Christian Life, Part II. Chap. 7. Sect. 5, Nelson's Fasts, Good-Friday. Nowelli Cat. p. 64. 66. Pearson on the Creed, Art. X. p. 363.
To be a sacrifice] See Isa. liii. 4, 5, 6. Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows; yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted. But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him, and with his stripes we are healed. All we, like sheep, have gone astray: we have turned every one to his own way, and the Lord hath laid on him the iniquity of us all. And 1 John ii. 2. He is the propitiation for our sins; and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world. And 2 Cor. v. 21. He hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.
For original guilt] See Article IX.
For actual sins] Excepting one sin, that against the Holy Ghost; of which see the Notes on Article XVI,