God. Trinity. Triunity
|1.||I believe in one God, the Father almighty, maker of heaven and earth, of all things visible and invisible.|
|2.||I believe in one Lord Jesus Christ, the Only Begotten Son of God, born of the Father before all ages. God from God, Light from Light, true God from true God, begotten, not made, consubstantial with the Father; through him all things were made.|
|8.||I believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life, who proceeds from the Father and the Son, who with the Father and the Son is adored and glorified, who has spoken through the prophets.|
|1.||Πιστεύομεν εἰς ἕνα Θεόν, Πατέρα, Παντοκράτορα, ποιητὴν οὐρανοῦ καὶ γῆς, ὁρατῶν τε πάντων καὶ ἀοράτων.|
|2.||Καὶ εἰς ἕνα Κύριον Ἰησοῦν Χριστόν, τὸν Υἱὸν τοῦ Θεοῦ τὸν μονογενῆ, τὸν ἐκ τοῦ Πατρὸς γεννηθέντα πρὸ πάντων τῶν αἰώνων· φῶς ἐκ φωτός, Θεὸν ἀληθινὸν ἐκ Θεοῦ ἀληθινοῦ, γεννηθέντα οὐ ποιηθέντα, ὁμοούσιον τῷ Πατρί, δι οὗ τὰ πάντα ἐγένετο.|
|8.||Καὶ εἰς τὸ Πνεῦμα τὸ Ἅγιον, τὸ κύριον, τὸ ζωοποιόν, τὸ ἐκ τοῦ Πατρὸς ἐκπορευόμενον, τὸ σὺν Πατρὶ καὶ Υἱῷ συμπροσκυνούμενον καὶ συνδοξαζόμενον, τὸ λαλῆσαν διὰ τῶν προφητῶν.|
15. … the Father is God;
the Son is God;
and the Holy Ghost is God.
16. … they are not three Gods; but one God.
24. And in this Trinity none is before, or after another; none is greater, or less than another.
25. … the Unity in Trinity, and the Trinity in Unity, is to be worshipped.
|3.||And the catholic faith is this: that we worship one God in Trinity, and Trinity in Unity;|
|4.||neither confounding the Persons, nor dividing the Essence.|
|5.||For there is one Person of the Father; another of the Son; and another of the Holy Ghost.|
|6.||But the Godhead of the Father, of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost, is all one; the Glory equal, the Majesty coeternal.|
|7.||Such as the Father is; such is the Son; and such is the Holy Ghost.|
|15.||So the Father is God; the Son is God; and the Holy Ghost is God.|
|16.||And yet they are not three Gods; but one God.|
|17.||So likewise the Father is Lord; the Son Lord; and the Holy Ghost Lord.|
|18.||And yet not three Lords; but one Lord.|
|24.||And in this Trinity none is before, or after another; none is greater, or less than another.|
|25.||But the whole three Persons are coeternal, and coequal. So that in all things, as aforesaid; the Unity in Trinity, and the Trinity in Unity, is to be worshipped.|
Impersonalistic thought tends to equate the Divine Absolute Subject, the triune trihypostatic I, with God the Father. To a certain degree this veils the impersonalistic conception of Divinity.
John of Damascus, too, is not averse to making such an equation.
But this is incorrect.
Impersonalistic thought tends to equate the Divine Absolute Subject, the triune trihypostatic I, with God the Father. To a certain degree this veils the impersonalistic conception of Divinity. John of Damascus, too, is not averse to making such an equation, as is attested, in particular, by the following statement: "Of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit we speak not as of three Gods but rather as of one God, the Holy Trinity, since the Son and the Holy Spirit are referred to one Cause, but, despite Sabellius' opinion, are not combined and do not merge" (Precise Exposition of the Orthodox Faith I.8). This identification of "Divinity" with the Father is even more evident in John's further affirmation: "When we look at Divinity, the first cause, the monarchy, the unity and identity of Divinity … we then imagine one. But when we consider what Divinity consists in, or more precisely what Divinity is and what proceeds from it, what exists eternally from the first cause with equal glory and without separation, i.e., when we consider the hypostases of the Son and the Spirit, we then get three" (I.8).
Despite all the imprecision of these definitions, one can nevertheless conclude that, in a certain sense, St. John of Damascus follows Origen in conceiving the Father as the Neoplatonic One, as proto-divinity, proto-will, proto-hypostasis (and not only as the First hypostasis). But this is incorrect. God, as the triune trihypostatic Subject, as the Absolute Person, is not the Father as one of the three hypostases, even if the First (and on this pathway it is impossible to avoid Origenistic subordinationism); rather, He is the tri-une subject in which three are one and one is three.
Although Arianism was, in its epoch, rejected and anathematized by the Church, theologically it has by no means been fully overcome, which is attested by its continuing vitality in different forms … even to the present day.
In general, subordinationism has enjoyed a kind of illegal citizenship in theology, since it has been neither genuinely clarified nor condemned.
But this leads to a new and more general question (one that has already arisen in kenotic theology): the question of the interrelation between the Father and the Son. In the doctrine of the sending of the Son by the Father and of His filial obedience to the Father, do we not have a hidden subordinationism, which in the history of dogma is then made more acute in different variants of Arianism, ancient and modern?
The Arians used in their own manner this general character of the relation of the Son to the Father, as well as certain texts and, first and foremost, Christ's words:
"my Father is greater than I"
Heresies converge in their only result — in the denial of the true divine-human combination, in which the strength of both uniting elements is preserved with the fullness of their internal connection.
Turning to the whole person, and not to an abstract mind, and to all of humanity, and not to solitary chosen ones, Church Christianity declares its ability to live and act in world history. … The whole pagan society, on the initiative of the state power, submits to Christianity, and pagan views also submit to Christianity. … Both forces hostile to Christianity, both the religious speculation of the East, and citizenship, taken from the West, now act more from within, and their action is all the more dangerous.
In the field of religious beliefs, they no longer deny Christ as the Son of God and at the same time the son of man (as the former heretics did), they do not reject the combination of the divine and human elements in him, but only distort the meaning of this combination, not seeing in it a complete and essential combination of the perfect Deities with perfect humanity. Thus, the first and most famous of these new heresies — the Arian one — understands the God-man as something in between or intermediate between one and the other nature; Christ here is something less than God and something more than man, not quite God and not quite man; the perfect Divinity remains inaccessible and incomprehensible, and man cannot receive true deification. Instead of reuniting in Christ the Creator with the creature, there is some kind of indefinite and strange rapprochement between them. This rapprochement is so imperfect that even the first-born of all creation, Christ, according to the Arian teaching, does not have real knowledge of the supreme God, does not know Him as He is, while, according to Orthodox teaching, the perfect man, being inwardly conformable to the perfect Deity as his true image has full knowledge of him.
When the Church, after the great turmoil caused by this heresy and its ramifications, resolutely rejected the Arian demigod and finally formulated (at the first two Ecumenical Councils) the dogma of the consubstantiality of the divine hypostases, Nestorius appeared, not denying this consubstantiality, not denying the perfect deity in the Logos, not rejecting the perfect humanity of Jesus, but not allowing a complete internal and continuous coincidence between them, but recognizing only a certain stay of the Logos in Jesus, as in his dwelling or temple. Arguing that only a man was born in Judea, on whom God later descended — the Word, Nestorius denied the human birth of God (i.e. from a human mother) and, because of this, rejected the Mother of God. The wickedness condemned in the temple of Our Lady of Ephesus soon turned into another, opposite, apparently, but essentially unambiguous form. If Nestorius allowed only an external, incomplete union of the deity with humanity, then Eutyches and his followers, the Monophysites, asserted a union so complete that humanity completely turns into the Divine. But such a union, in which one of the things being joined disappears completely, is no longer a union, but an absorption. Thus, both heresies, despite their apparent opposition (one divides, the other merges), converge in their only result — in the denial of the true divine-human combination, in which the strength of both uniting elements is preserved with the fullness of their internal connection.
|For this research to continue
please support us.
|Contact information||© 2012—2022 1260.org||Disclaimer|