Sidor som bilder
PDF
ePub

essence was so peculiarly communicated to the Word, that there was never any other naturally begotten by the Father; and in that respect Christ is the only-begotten Son of God. For the clearing of which truth, it will first be necessary to inquire into the true notion of the only-begotten; and then shew how it belongs particularly to Christ, by reason of the divine nature communicated by way of generation to him alone. First, therefore, we must avoid the vain interpretation of the ancient heretics ', who would have the restraining term only to belong, not to the Son, but to the Father; as if the only-begotten were no more than begotten of the Father only. Which is both contrary to the language of the Scriptures, and the common custom of men, who use it not for him who is begotten of one, but for him who alone is begotten of any.

Secondly, we must by no means admit the exposition of 139 the later heretics ’, who take the only-begotten to be nothing

1 This was the fallacy which Euno ουχί και Μονόκτιστον αυτόν ονομάζεις; mius endeavoured to put upon the [Ibid. & 21. p. 256 e.) Thirdly, by a Church, as appears by those words of particular instance, shewing the ab. his delivered and answered by St Ba surdity of such an iriterpretation, for sil: Διά τούτο γάρ, φησί, μονογενής, that thereby no man could properly επειδή [μόνος] παρά μόνου τη του αγεν be called μονογενής, because not beνήτου δυνάμει γεννηθείς και κτισθείς τε gotten of one, but two parents: Movoλειότατος γέγονεν υπουργός: [adυ. Eu γενής δε, ως έoικεν, ανθρώπων ουδείς nom. 1. i. 8 20. Vol. Ι. p. 255 Ε.] as κατά γε τον υμέτερον λόγον, διά το εκ if μονογενής were only παρά μόνου, and συνδυασμού πάσιν υπάρχειν την γένunigenitus were nothing else but geni νησιν ουδε η Σάρρα μήτηρ μονογενούς tus ab uno.

This St Basil refuteth ην παιδός, διότι ουχί μόνη αυτόν, αλλά copiously; first, from the language of μετά του 'Αβραάμ, έτεκνώσατο. [Ibid.] the Scriptures and the usage of man 2 The Socinians make very much kind: Διά την πανουργίαν ήν περί το of this notion, and apply it so unto όνομα του μονογενούς έκακούργησε, παρά Christ, as that thereby they might τε την των ανθρώπων συνήθειαν, και avoid all necessity of an eternal geneπαρά την ευσεβή των γραφών παρά ration. So the Racovian Catechism : δοσιν εκλαμβάνων αυτού την διάνοιαν. • Causa cur Christo ista attributa (sc. Μονογενής γαρ ουχ ο παρά μόνου γενό- proprium et unigenitum Dei Filium μενος, αλλ' ο μόνος γεννηθείς εν τη

esse) competant, hæc est; quod inter κοινή χρήσει προσαγορεύεται. [Ibid. omnes Dei filios et præcipuus sit, p. 256 Α.] Secondly, by a retort et Deo charissimus ; quemadmodum peculiar to that heresy, which held Isaac, quia Abrahamo charissimus et the Son of God might be called hæres exstitit, unigenitus vocatus est, κτισθείς as well as γεννηθείς, created Heb. xi. 17. licet fratrem Ismaelem. as well as begotten, and consequently habuerit ; et Solomon unigenitus comight be as properly named povó ram matre sua, licet plures ex eadem κτιστος as μονογενής: Εί τοίνυν μη παρά matre fratres fuerint, 1 Paral. iii. 1, το μόνος γεγεννήσθαι, αλλά διά το παρά 2, 3, &c.' [Sect. iv. c. 1, p. 113.] μόνου μονογενής είρηται, ταυτό δε εστι And that this might be applied to the κατά σε το εκτίσθαι το γεγεννήσθαι, τι interpretation of the Creed, Schlictin

12, 16.

else but the most beloved of all the sons; because Isaac was called the only son of Abraham, when we know that he had Gen, xxii. ., Ishmael beside; and Solomon said to be the only-begotten before his mother, when David had other children even by Prov. iv. 3. the mother of Solomon. For the only-begotten and the mostbeloved are not the same; the one having the nature of a cause in respect of the other, and the same cannot be cause and effect to itself. For though it be true, that the only son is the beloved son; yet with this order, that he is therefore beloved, because the only, not therefore the only because beloved. Although therefore Christ be the only-begotten and the beloved Son of God, yet we must not look upon these two attributes as synonymous, or equally significant of the same thing, but as one depending on the other; unigeniture being the foundation of his singular love. Beside, Isaac was called the only son of Abraham for some other reason than because he was singularly beloved of Abraham, for he was the only son of the free-woman, the only son of the promise made to Abraham, which was first this, Sarah shall have a cen. xvii. 8on, and then, in Isaac shall thy seed be called. So that Isaac may well be called the only son of Abraham in reference to the promise, as the apostle speaks expressly : By Heb. xi. 17. fuith Abraham when he was tried, offered up Isaac, and he that had received the promises offered up his only-begotten son. Avoiding therefore these two expositions, as far short of the true notion of the only-begotten; we must look upon it in the most proper, full, and significant sense, as signifying a son so begotten as none other is, was, or can be : so as the term restrictive only shall have relation not only to the Father

14; axi. 12.

gius hath inserted it as a material observation : Nam hic unicus seu unigena filius nominatur, qui cæteris longe charior est Patri, longeque præstantior :' and confirms the interpretation with those two testimonies concerning Isaac and Solomon. (Schlictingius explains in the same manner the term unigenitus, in his Commen. tary on St John's Gospel i. 11. p. 12. col. 1.) But certainly this observation of theirs is vain, or what else they say is false. For if Christ be called the Son of God, because conceived by the Holy Ghost, and none else was

ever so conceived, then is he the only.
begotten by virtue of his generation.
And if so, then is he not the only.
begotten, as Isaac and Solomon were,
that is, by the affection and prelation
of their parents. Or if Christ were
the only-begotten, as Isaac and Solo-
mon were, then was he not conceived
after a singular manner, for the
brethren of Solomon no way differed
from him in their generation. It
is plain therefore that this interpre-
tation was invented, that when all
the rest should fail, they might stick
to this.

generating', but also to the Son begotten, and to the manner

of the generation. It is true, the Father spake from heaven, Mark i. 11. saying, Thou art my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased,

and thereby we are to understand, that whosoever of us are
beloved by the Father, are so beloved in and through the Son.
In the same manner Christ is the only-begotten Son of God;
and as many of us as God hath bestowed his love upon, that
we should be called the sons of God, are all brought into that
near relation by our fellowship with him, who is by a far
more near relation the natural and eternal Son.

Having thus declared the interpretation of the word, that,
properly, as primogeniture consisteth in prelation, so unigeni-
ture in exclusion; and that none can be strictly called the only-
begotten, but he who alone was so begotten: we shall proceed to
make good our assertion, shewing that the divine essence was
peculiarly communicated to the Word, by which he was begotten
the Son of God, and never any was so begotten beside that Son.

And here we meet with two difficulties: one shewing that 140 there were other sons of God said to be begotten of him; to whom either the divine essence was communicated, and then the communication of that to the Word made him not the only-begotten ; or it was not communicated, and then there is no such communication necessary to found such a filiation: the other, alleging that the same divine essence may be communicated to another beside the Word, and not only that it may, but that it is so, to the person of the Holy Ghost; whence either the Holy Ghost must be the Son of God, and then the Word is not the only-begotten; or if he be not the

1 Eunomius would have it only παρά μόνου, in relation to the Father only. St Basil shews that no way proper, and shews that uovoyevns is not he which παρά μόνου but μόνος, γεgévvntai. adv. Eunom. 1. ii. & 21. (p. 256.) St Cyril [of Alexandria) adds these two παρά μόνου and μόνος together, in relation to the Father and the Son: Μονογενής κατά φύσιν ο εκ θεού Πατρός ώνόμασται Λόγος, ότι μόνος εκ μόνου γεγέννηται του Ilatpós. Epist. 1 ad Regin. as Ruffinus doth in unicus: ‘Ideo subjungit unicum hunc esse Filium Dei.-Unus enim de uno nascitur. Erpos.

Symb. $ 6. [p. 62.] St Gregory Na-
zianzen adds to these two & third,
in respect of the manner; Movoyevns
δε ουχ ότι μόνος εκ μόνου και μόνον,
αλλ' ότι και μονοτρόπως, ουχ ώς τα
σώματα.

, [Orat. 30. § 20. Vol. 1.
p. 553 E.] So he, something ob-
scurely and corruptly; but plainly
enough in Damascene, who aims
often to deliver himself in the words
of Nazianzen : Λέγεται - μονογενής
δε, ότι μόνος εκ μόνου του Πατρός
μόνως εγεννήθη ουδέ γάρ ομοιούται
ετέρα γέννησις τη του Υιού του Θεού
γεννήσει, ουδέ γάρ έστιν άλλος Υιός του
Ocoû. De Fid, Orthod. l. i. c. 8.

Son, then is not the communication of the divine essence a sufficient foundation of the relation of sonship. These two objections being answered, nothing will remain farther to demonstrate this last assertion.

For the first, we acknowledge that others are frequently called the sons of God, and that we call the same God our Father, which Christ called his; that both he that sanctifieth, Heb. ii. 11 and they who are sanctified, are all of one: for which cause he is not ashamed to call us brethren: we confess that those whom St Paul hath begotten through the Gospel", may well be termed the begotten of God, whose seed remaineth in them : but withal, we affirm that this our regeneration is of a nature wholly different from the generation of the Son. We are first generated', and have our natural being; after that regenerated, and so receive a spiritual renovation, and by virtue thereof an inheritance incorruptible: whereas the generation of Christ admits no regeneration, he becoming at once thereby God, and Son, and Heir of all. The state of sonship which we come into is but of adoption, shewing the generation by which we are begotten to be but metaphorical; whereas Christ is so truly begotten, so properly the natural Son of God, that bis generation clearly excludeth the name

1 1 Cor. iv. 15. Εν γάρ Χριστο υιός έστι θεού, τί αν συ άλλου διαΙησού διά του ευαγγελίου εγώ υμάς φέρης και who is thus answered by έγέννησα. 1 John iii. 9. Πάς ο γεγεν Origen : Προς δν έρούμεν, ότι πας μεν νημένος εκ του θεού αμαρτίαν ου ποιεί, ό, ώς ο Παύλος ώνόμασε, μηκέτι υπό ότι σπέρμα αυτού εν αυτώ μένει. And φόβου παιδαγωγούμενος, αλλά δι' αυτό more expressly, 1 John ν. 1. Πας ο το καλόν αιρούμενος, υιός έστι θεού: πιστεύων, ότι Ιησούς έστιν ο Χριστός, ούτος δε πολλά και μακρά διαφέρει εκ του θεού γεγέννηται και πάς ο αγα παντός του διά την αρετήν χρηματίπών τον γεννήσαντα, αγαπά και τον ζοντος Υιού του θεού, όστις ώσπεροί γεγεννημένον εξ αυτού. Quisquis credit πηγή της και αρχή των τοιούτων τυγχάJesum esse Christum illum, ex Deo Orig. cont. Celsum, 1. i. (S 57. genitus est; et quisquis diligit eum qui Vol. 1. p. 371 F.] genuit, diligit etiam eum qui ex eo 3 First, it is most certain that the genitus est.

Word of God, as the Word, is not the ? 'Nos genuit Deus, ut filii ejus adopted, but the natural Son of God. simus, quos fecerat ut homines esse 'Nec est itaque Dei Filius Deus falsus, mus. Unicum autem genuit, non so nec Deus adoptivus, nec Deus connunlum ut Filius esset, quod Pater non cupatus sed Deus verus.' S. Hilar. est, sed etiam ut Deus esset, quod et de Trin. 1. ν. [c. 5. p. 857 D.] “His Pater est.' S. August. de Consensu etiam Filius Dei natura est Filius, Ευαng. 1. ii. c. 3. [S 7. Vol. III. part 2. non adoptione.' Concil. Tolet. xi. p. 30 A.] In the book of Celsus, there [Præfatio. Labbe, Vol. vi. p. 541 D.) was a Jew introduced speaking thus Υιός του θεού εστι φύσει, και ου θέσει, to Christ: Eί τούτο λέγεις, ότι πας γεννηθείς εκ Πατρός. S. Cyril. Hierosol. άνθρωπος κατά θείαν πρόνοιαν γεγονώς Catech. 11. [8 7. p. 152 Α.] and again:

νει.

of adoption; and not only so, but when he becometh the

Son of man, even in bis humanity refuseth the name of an Gal. iv. 4, 5. adopted Son. For when the fulness of time was come, God

sent forth his Son made of a woman, made under the Law, to redeem them that were under the Law, (not that he, but) that we might receive the adoption of sons.

He then whose generation is totally different from ours whom he calleth brethren; he whom in the sacred Scriptures the Spirit nameth the true Son, the Father sometimes his own, sometimes his beloved, but never his adopted Son'; he who by those pro

Οικ εκ του μη όντος εις το είναι τον Yίον παρήγαγεν, ουδε τον μη όντα εις υιοθεσίαν ήγαγεν αλλ' αΐδιος ων ο ΙΙατήρ, αϊδίως εγέννησε και ανεκφράστως Υιόν ένα μόνον, αδελφόν ουκ έχοντα. Ibid. [§ 14. p. 156 A.] This hath been so generally confessed, that Felix and Elipandus, who were condemned for maintaining Christ as man to be the adopted Son of God, did acknowledge it, as appeareth by the beginning of their book: 'Confitemur et cre limus Deum Dei Filium, ante omnia tempora

sine initio ex Patre genitum, coæternum et consubstantialem non adoptione, sed genere.' [Labbe, Vol. VII. p. 1033 c.] Secondly, it is also certain, that the man Christ Jesus, taken personally, is the natural, not the adopted, Son of God: because the man Christ Jesus is no other person than the Word, who is the eternal and natural Son, and by subsisting in the human nature could not leave off to be the natural Son. The denial of this by Felix and Elipandus was condemned as heretical in the Council of Francford [can. 1. Ibid. p. 1057.); and their opinion was thus expressed, partly in the words of St Augustine, partly in their own additions: “Confitemur et credimus eum factum ex muliere, factum sub lege; non genere esse Filium Dei, sed adoptione; non natura, sed gratia.' [Ibid. p. 1033 c.] This they maintained by forged testimonies of some fathers, and by the Liturgy of the Church of Toledo, composed by Hildephonsus, as the Roman by Gregory: in the Mass de

Cæna Domini, “Qui per adoptivi hominis passionem, dum suo non indulsit corpori;' and in the Mass de Ascensione Domini, 'Hodie Salvator noster post adoptionem carnis, sedlem repetivit Deitatis.' [Ibid. p. 1031 E.] To this the Synod opposed their determination in Sacrosyllabo: Quod ex te nascetur sanctum, vocabitur Filius Dei, non adoptivus sed verus, non alienus sed proprius.' [Ibid. p. 1021 d.) And again : 'Porro adoptivus dici non potest nisi is qui alienus est ab eo a quo dicitur adoptatus; et gratis ei adoptio tribuitur, quoniam non ex debito, sed ex in lulgentia tantummodo a loptio præstatur: sicut nos aliquando, cum essemus peccando filii iræ, alieni eramus a Deo, per proprium et verum Filium ejus, qui non eguit adoptione, adoptio nobis filiorum donata est.' [Ibid. p. 1024 E.] And of this they give us the true ground in the Synodic Epistle: "Unitas persone, quæ est in Dei Filio et filio Virginis, adoptionis tollit injuriam.' [Ibid. p. 1041 D.]

1 'Legi et relegi Scripturas, Jesum Filium Dei nusquam adoptione inveni.' Ambrosiaster Com. in Ep. ad Rom. Dices enim, Cur times adoptivum Christum Dominum nominare? Dico tibi, quia nec Apostoli eum sic nominaverunt, nec sanctu Dei et Catholica Ecclesia consuetudinem habuit sic eum appellare.' Synod. Epist. Concil. Francoford. [Labbe, Vol. vii. p. 1043 D.) From whence they charge all those to whom they write that Synodic Epistle, that they should be

« FöregåendeFortsätt »