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assertion of the Scripture, there was the less necessity of division in the church, in proportion as the parties were agreed, that these relations are inscrutable to man's understanding: and it would of course follow, that any speculative grounds of decision, if such there were, even if they should be more favorable to one hypothesis than to another, ought still to be regarded as of subordinate weight. As to the Scriptures, the Greek church could urge, that in the only passage in which the procession (exrógevois) of the Spirit is spoken of, (John 15: 26—we will not inquire whether this be its doctrinal sense,) it is derived from the Father;" while the Latin church could say, that the Spirit is not only sent by the Father, but also by the Son (John 15: 26. 16: 7), and that he is called the Spirit of Christ and of the Son (Rom. 8: 9. Gal. 4: 6), which would allow the inference of a similar relation in respect of his subsistence also. But as the Greeks denied the validity of this inference, since it was not confirmed by the testimony of Scripture, so might the Latins maintain, that the procession from the Son was as little excluded by the procession from the Father, as is the fact that the Spirit is sent by the Son, (which is elsewhere proved,) excluded, because he is in one place (John 14:26) described as sent only by the Father. In this state of the contest, how desirable that the parties should have been satisfied with the mediating formula, -that the Holy Spirit proceeds from the Father through the Son. This, although it would not have prevented any one from making additional statements, would not have excluded any view compatible with the formula; but this is just what theological disputants have seldom been able to conclude upon. The Greeks protest against every interpretation which would make the Son the ground, not merely of the giving but also of the subsistence of the Spirit; they grant that the gene
? This is the position maintained by the Archbishop Theophanes Prokoponicz in his Tractatus de processione Spiritus Sancti (Gotha 1771), with great thor. oughness and acuteness. His chiet argument against the Western doctrine is, that it is not based upon Scripture; yet he also applies theological principles. “ Vain is the argumentation,” he says, “ the Son is knowledge, the Holy Spirit is love, therefore the latter is produced by the former. If anything can hence he inferred it is only, that the Son is first in order, and is presupposed by the Holy Spirit, as knowledge is presupposed in order to love." And this is no more than what we concede, that the Holy Spirit proceeds from the Father by (per) the Son, that is, the Son being presupposed.
? John of Damasc. de fide orth. I, 12—not és autou but di autoū. More full is Gregory Nyss. c. Eunom. L. I. The same formula is found among the Latins, with the needful explanation. Conf. Thos, Aquin. Summ, 1, qu. 36, art. 3— who follows Hilarius de Trin. L. XII. fin,
The Lutheran View.
ration of the Son may be regarded as the condition of the procession of the Spirit, but they say, that the Father alone is the ground or cause (airios) of his divinity 2 The Latin church, on the other hand, agreed with this formula only in the sense, that as the Son has from the Father his subsistence and his divine nature, so too he has this from him, that the Holy Ghost proceeds from him, but they do not concede any difference in the mode in which the Father and the Son are the source of the Spirit who proceeds from them. And even the statement in the Florentine formula of union, which has the air of being made to set aside the chief objection of the Greek church-that the Latin church seemed to hold to two principles or sources of the procession; even this statement, which is, that in the procession of the Spirit the Father and the Son are to be regarded as one principle, and that the act itself is one identical act,-is in fact most opposite to the real views of the Greek church; one cannot, therefore, wonder that they indignantly repelled the decree of union.
The Lutheran theologians have remained true in this respect to the doctrinal type of the occidental church; with even more strictness than many of the Scholasticst they maintained the theorem, that the Holy Spirit proceeds (spiratus est) from the Father and the Son, as from one principle, in one indivisible act. We cannot blame them for this; since this position was so interwoven with the mode of exhibiting the doctrine of the Trinity, that whoever kept the latter could not well depart from the former. Nor can we see, that the inference from the relation in which both the Father and the Son stand to the sending of the Spirit, to that of his like procession from both, is as groundless as it seemed to the Greek church-according to the maxim, princi
This is the meaning of Prokopovicz-when he says (pp. 337–349 of his tractatus)—that the Fathers here use per, not for er but for post; not for indicating the cause but the order—an order not of time, but of conditionality.
John of Damasc. expressly says : jóvos yùp aitlog ó marhp; in his interpretation of the Homily de sancto sabbatho (II. p. 815, ed. of Lequien) he says: the Spirit is called the Spirit of the Son, because he is by him revealed and imparted to men; not because he had his subsistence froin him.
* Decret. Unionis concil. Florent.-the essential parts are cited in Gieseler's Chh. Hist. Vol. 2. Pt. 4. p. 541-3: “Since all things which belong to the Father he has given by generation to his only begotten Son, except that he is the Father; this thing also, that the Holy Spirit proceeds from the Son, the Son has eternally from the Father.” Conf. Aquinas, ubi supra. The idea belongs to Augustin, de Trin. XV. 17. Conf. Petri Lomb. Sentent. I. dist. XII.
• Quenstedt rejects the expression “processio per filium,” which even Aquipas concedes in a certain sense.
pium missionis in tempore est principium originis in aeterno.1 Yet the theologians of Tübingen, when this subject was discussed in their correspondence with the Patriarch Jeremias, might have been more forbearing towards the view of the Greek church, since, as has been remarked, the Scriptures do not decide directly against it, and the rational grounds for the opposite doctrine are not free from objections; while all that the Christian conscious. ness demands would be satisfied, if it were conceded, that we cannot conceive of the imparting of the Spirit except through the Son. Yet, since that time, the contesting of the Greek doctrine has become a standing article of Protestant polemics.
2. Let us turn now from the personal acts to the personal properties or qualities. The latter flow from the former. As no complete act can be conceived of without subject and object,3 so the personal acts of generation and procession cannot be otherwise represented. Since it is a universal law of language, that wherever the logical subject is also the grammatical subject, (e. g. the Father generates,) the active is used, and wherever the logical object is the grammatical subject, (e. g. the Son is generated,) the passive is employed; so here, too, as these acts are referred either to their subject or their object, we make a distinction into generatio et spiratio activa et passiva, (thus, Pater generat, Filius generatur ;-Pater et Filius spirant, Spiritus S. spiratur); although it should be remarked, that this designation is to be regarded only as a grammatical one, since there cannot be actual passivity in God. (On this account it were perhaps better, instead of the expression generatio et spiratio passiva, to adopt another, often used, generatio et spiratio terminative spectata). The generatio activa, now, is also called paternity, and this is the personal property of the Father; the generatio passiva is called sonship, and is the personal property of the Son; the spiratio passiva is also called procession, and is the personal property of the Holy Spirit; for, it is these very relations which make it necessary to distinguish the persons of the Godhead, and which constitute the idea of these persons. We must make this distinction, because, although God himself is the generating and the generated, although he is both
1 Quenstedt ubi supra. Compare what is said in the fourth section upon the relation of the essential and revealed Trinity.
2 Acta theologor. Wirtemberg. et patriarchae Constantinop. (1584); p. 159— 162 and p. 270—296.
3 To prove this, and especially to show that the apparent exception of intransitive actions is not really such, must be reserved to the logical or metaphysical investigation of these categories.
1847.] The Spiratio Activa not a Personal Property. 33 the cause and the object of the procession, yet we must still say, that so far as he is to be conceived of as generating he cannot also be generated, so far forth as he is the source he is not also the object of the act of procession, and the converse; but yet the Father is nothing other than God represented as generating-the divine essence with the personal property of paternity; the Son is nothing other than God as generated, and the Holy Ghost is nothing other than God represented as proceeding-the divine essence with the personal properties of sonship and procession. This we have already stated in the previous section.
But since the three personal acts involve four relations, it is a natural inquiry, why only three of these are represented as personal properties, and the fourth, the spiratio activa, omitted? The answer is, because this act belongs to both the Father and the Son, not so far as they are personally distinguished, but so far as they are one. We might regard this as made out purely by the testimony of the Scriptures, as the Western church interprets them; for these do not speak of a special principium spirationis besides the Father and the Son, but they say expressly of the former, and let us infer of the latter, that the Holy Ghost proceeds from them; but if this be something common to both of them, it cannot be something which goes to constitute their differ. ences as persons, it cannot be considered as a personal property. But it has also been attempted to show by deduction that this is necessary. It is said, that we are warranted in distinguishing several persons in the divine nature, only because the relations which are embraced in the personal acts are so opposed to or contrasted with each other, that one person cannot be the subject of them; in virtue of this opposition the Father can only be Father and not Son, the Son can only be Son—the subject and the object of the generation cannot but be distinguished from each
. ep. 391 : “ We must make confession of our faith by conjoining the peculiar and the common : the deity is common, the paternity is peculiar : we must then say, uniting the two, I believe in God the Father: and, again, in the confession of the Son we must do the like, join what is peculiar to him with what is common, and say, in God the Son; in like manner with the Holy Ghost. ... Thus is the unity saved by the confession of the one divinity, and what is peculiar to the persons is confessed in the statement of the properties
* Since Augustine the canon has been universally received that the differerice of the persons is constituted solely by their mutual and opposite relations (per id, quod ad alterum dicitur, per oxéru, relationern s. habitudinem mutu. am). Conf. Petavius theolog. Dogmat. de Trin. L. IV. cp. 10. § 5 sq.
ascribed to each."
other; and so, too, the principium spirans must be distinguished from the principium spiratum or procedens. But where no such opposition or contrast exists, there the general canon holds good, that in God all is one, which we, on account of the limitations of our knowledge, are obliged to look at from different sides or in different relations, and hence to regard as distinct.? Since, now, the procession and generation have no such mutual relation, cannot be set over against each other, it follows that the principium or subjectum spirationis from which the Holy Ghost proceeds, though not indeed identical with the Holy Ghost itself as the objectum spirationis, (for here there is a relation of opposition,) can and must be one with the subjectum as well as the objectum generationis, with that which generates and that which is generated. Indeed, the Scholastics have derived from this an argument for the position, that the Holy Spirit proceeds from the Son also; for if, say they, the Spirit is to be really distinguished from the Son, there must be an oppositio relationis between them; this is so, if the Son is conceived of as the subject, and the Spirit as the object of the spiratio, if the former is spirans as the latter is spiratus : but if the Son were not, together with the Father, principium spirationis, since the Father is represented as both generans and spirans, there is nothing to hinder the Son from being both gene. ratus and spiratus, that is, from being conceived of as identical with the Spirit; and, according to the above canon this must be 0.2 But from this it also follows, that the Father and the Son
i In dirinis omnia sunt unum,
ubi non obriat relationis oppositio. Calov. Syst. tom. III. p. 836 ; Baier, P. I. cp. 1. § 42 not. b. Conf. Petav. I. c. lib. IX. cp. 7. § 7. În conformity with this Aquinas (Summ. P. I. qu. 30. art. 2.) in answering the question : Utrum in Deo sint plures personae quam tres ? arrives at this conclusion : Ostensum est, quod plures personae sunt plures relationes subsistentes ad invicem, realiter distinctae; realis autem distinctio inter relationes divinas non est nisi ratione oppositionis relativae; ergo oportet duas relationes oppositas ad duas personas pertinere : si quae autem relationes oppositae non sunt, ad eandem personam necesse est eas pertinere ; but this holds of the spiratio activa in relation to the generatio activa et passiva.
Conf. Aquinas in Summ. P. I. qu. 36. art. 2. Spiritus S. ita necessario procedit a Filio, quod, si non procederet, non distingueretur ab eo personaliter; for, si in Filio et Spiritu S. non esset invenire nisi duas relationes, quibus uterque refertur ad patrem, illae relationes non essent ad invicem oppositae, sicut neque duae relationes, quibus Pater refertur ad illos; unde, sicut persona patris est una, ita sequeretur, quod persona Filii et Spiritus S. esset una, habens duas relationes oppositas duabus relationibus Patris. Anselm, in his work de Spiritus S. processione contra Graecos, led the way in this argumentation. This work had very great influence upon the mode of exhibiting the doctrine of Trinity among the Scholastics, and, through them, in the whole Western