THE COUNCIL of EPHESUS - 431 A.D.
The Third Ecumenical Council

 

 


Cyril of Alexandria
Fresco, Cyprus, 16th c.
    St. Cyril and the Theotokos     Sophia, Ephesus Library

NESTORIUS: (c. 321; abp Const. 428; dep. 431; d.? 451) Over-emphasizes DISTINCTION of natures (phuseis): asks how characteristics of humanity can be attributed to divinity. How does God suffer, weep, and die? Mary is Mother of Christ, not God-Bearer.


CYRIL of Alexandria: (patr. Alex, 412; d. 444) Emphasizes UNITY of Christ: “two different natures (phuseis) come together to form a [hypostatic] unity [kat hypostasin], and from both arose one Christ, one Son ... The Wod of God suffered and was crucified. Mary is God-Bearer.

(Theotokos does not technically mean Mother of Godtiktein is the Greek verb that describes the act of going into labor and giving birth.  Mary is the One Who gives birth to God)


COUNCIL DEFINES: [1] Unconfused Union [2] of two natures [in one person]: [3] Christ is consubstantial with the Father in divinity; [4] consubstantial with us in humanity


 

 2nd Letter Cyril to Nestorius

 

SECOND LETTER of CYRIL to NESTORIUS
[Declared by the council of Ephesus to be in agreement with Nicaea]

 

 


Cyril sends greeting in the Lord to the most religious and reverend fellow-minister Nestorius

    Τῶι εὐλαβεστάτωι καὶ θεοφιλεστάτωι συλλειτουργῶι Νεστορίωι Κύριλλος ἐν κυρίωι χαίρειν.

I understand that there are some who are talking rashly of the reputation in which I hold your reverence, and that this is frequently the case when meetings of people in authority give them an opportunity. I think they hope in this way to delight your ears and so they spread abroad uncontrolled expressions. They are people who have suffered no wrong, but have been exposed by me for their own profit, one because he oppressed the blind and the poor, a second because he drew a sword on his mother, a third because he stole someone else’s money in collusion with a maidservant and since then has lived with such a reputation as one would hardly wish for one’s worst enemy.

Καταφλυαροῦσι μέν, ὡς μανθάνω, τινὲς τῆς ἐμῆς ὑπολήψεως ἐπὶ τῆς σῆς    θεοσεβείας, καὶ τοῦτο συχνῶς, τὰς τῶν ἐν τέλει συνόδους καιροφυλακοῦντες μάλιστα, καὶ τάχα που καὶ τέρπειν οἰόμενοι τὴν σὴν ἀκοὴν καὶ ἀβουλήτους πέμπουσι φωνάς, ἠδικημένοι μὲν οὐδέν, ἐλεγχθέντες δέ, καὶ τοῦτο χρηστῶς, ὃ μὲν ὅτι τυφλοὺς ἠδίκει καὶ πένητας, ὃ δὲ ὡς μητρὶ ξίφος ἐπανατείνας, ὃ δὲ θεραπαίνηι συγκεκλοφὼς χρυσίον ἀλλότριον καὶ τοιαύτην ἐσχηκὼς ἀεὶ τὴν ὑπόληψιν, ἣν οὐκ ἂν εὔξαιτό τις συμβῆναι τισὶν καὶ τῶν λίαν ἐχθρῶν.

For the rest I do not intend to spend more words on this subject in order not to vaunt my own mediocrity above my teacher and master or above the fathers. For however one may try to live, it is impossible to escape the malice of evil people, whose mouths are full of cursing and bitterness and who will have to defend themselves before the judge of all.

πλὴν οὐ πολὺς τῶν τοιούτων ὁ λόγος ἐμοί, ἵνα μήτε ὑπὲρ τὸν δεσπότην καὶ διδάσκαλον μήτε μὴν ὑπὲρ τοὺς πατέρας τὸ τῆς ἐνούσης ἐμοὶ βραχύτητος ἐκτείνοιμι μέτρον. οὐ γὰρ ἐνδέχεται τὰς τῶν φαύλων διαδρᾶναι σκαιότητας, ὡς ἂν ἕλοιτό τις διαβιοῦν. ἀλλ' ἐκεῖνοι μὲν ἀρᾶς καὶ πικρίας μεστὸν ἔχοντες τὸ στόμα τῶι πάντων ἀπολογήσονται κριτῆι·

But I turn to a subject more fitting to myself and remind you as a brother in Christ always to be very careful about what you say to the people in matters of teaching and of your thought on the faith. You should bear in mind that to scandalise even one of these little ones that believe in Christ lays you open to unendurable wrath. If the number of those who are distressed is very large, then surely we should use every skill and care to remove scandals and to expound the healthy word of faith to those who seek the truth.

τετράψομαι δὲ πάλιν ἐγὼ πρὸς τὸ ὅτι μάλιστα πρέπον ἐμαυτῶι καὶ ὑπομνήσω καὶ νῦν ὡς ἀδελφὸν ἐν Χριστῶι τῆς διδασκαλίας τὸν λόγον καὶ τὸ ἐπὶ τῆι πίστει φρόνημα μετὰ πάσης ἀσφαλείας ποιεῖσθαι πρὸς τοὺς λαοὺς ἐννοεῖν τε ὅτι τὸ σκανδαλίσαι καὶ μόνον ἕνα τῶν μικρῶν τῶν πιστευόντων εἰς Χριστὸν ἀφόρητον ἔχει τὴν ἀγανάκτησιν. εἰ δὲ δὴ πληθὺς εἴη τοσαύτη τῶν λελυπημένων, πῶς οὐχ ἁπάσης εὐτεχνίας ἐν χρείαι καθεστήκαμεν πρός γε τὸ δεῖν ἐμφρόνως περιελεῖν τὰ σκάνδαλα καὶ τὸν ὑγιᾶ τῆς πίστεως κατευρῦναι λόγον τοῖς ζητοῦσι τὸ ἀληθές;

The most effective way to achieve this end will be zealously to occupy ourselves with the words of the holy fathers, to esteem their words, to examine our words to see if we are holding to their faith as it is written, to conform our thoughts to their correct and irreproachable teaching.

ἔσται δὲ τοῦτο καὶ μάλα ὀρθῶς, εἰ τοῖς τῶν ἁγίων πατέρων περιτυγχάνοντες λόγοις περὶ πολλοῦ τε αὐτοὺς ποιεῖσθαι σπουδάζοιμεν καὶ δοκιμάζοντες ἑαυτοὺς εἰ ἐσμὲν ἐν τῆι πίστει κατὰ τὸ γεγραμμένον, ταῖς ἐκείνων ὀρθαῖς καὶ ἀνεπιλήπτοις δόξαις τὰς ἐν ἡμῖν ἐννοίας εὖ μάλα συμπλάττοιμεν.

The holy and great synod, therefore, stated that

  Ἔφη τοίνυν ἡ ἁγία καὶ μεγάλη σύνοδος

1) the only begotten Son, begotten of God the Father according to nature, true God from true God, the light from the light, the one through whom the Father made all things, came down, became incarnate, became man,

αὐτὸν τὸν ἐκ θεοῦ πατρὸς κατὰ φύσιν γεννηθέντα υἱὸν μονογενῆ, τὸν ἐκ θεοῦ ἀληθινοῦ θεὸν ἀληθινόν, τὸ φῶς τὸ ἐκ τοῦ φωτός, τὸν δι' οὗ τὰ πάντα πεποίηκεν ὁ πατήρ, κατελθεῖν σαρκωθῆναι ἐνανθρωπῆσαι

2) suffered, rose on the third day and ascended to heaven.

παθεῖν ἀναστῆναι τῆι τρίτηι ἡμέραι καὶ ἀ νελθεῖν εἰς οὐρανούς.

   

1. We too ought to follow these words and these teachings and consider what is meant by saying that the Word from God took flesh and became man.

τούτοις καὶ ἡμᾶς ἕπεσθαι δεῖ καὶ τοῖς λόγοις καὶ τοῖς δόγμασιν, ἐννοοῦντας τί τὸ σαρκωθῆναι καὶ ἐνανθρωπῆσαι δηλοῖ τὸν ἐκ θεοῦ λόγον.

Note that the following passage is slightly ambiguous and could be interpreted (as it later was by the monophysites) as implying a single new nature after the union (henosis) of Incarnation  

For we do not say that the nature of the Word was changed and became flesh, nor that he was turned into a whole man made of body and soul.

οὐ γὰρ φαμὲν ὅτι ἡ τοῦ λόγου φύσις μεταποιηθεῖσα γέγονε σάρξ, ἀλλ' οὐδὲ ὅτι εἰς ὅλον ἄνθρωπον μετεβλήθη τὸν ἐκ ψυχῆς καὶ σώματος,

Rather do we claim that the Word in an unspeakable, inconceivable manner united to himself hypostatically flesh enlivened by a rational soul, and so became man and was called son of man,

ἐκεῖνο δὲ μᾶλλον ὅτι σάρκα ἐψυχωμένην ψυχῆι λογικῆι ἑνώσας ὁ λόγος ἑαυτῶι καθ' ὑπόστασιν ἀφράστως τε καὶ ἀπερινοήτως γέγονεν ἄνθρωπος καὶ κεχρημάτικεν υἱὸς ἀνθρώπου,

not by God’s will alone or good pleasure, nor by the assumption of a person alone.

οὐ κατὰ θέλησιν μόνην 1,1,1.27 ἢ εὐδοκίαν, ἀλλ' οὐδὲ ὡς ἐν προσλήψει προσώπου μόνου,

Rather did two different natures come together to form a unity, and from both arose one Christ, one Son.

καὶ ὅτι διάφοροι μὲν αἱ πρὸς ἑνότητα τὴν ἀληθινὴν συνενεχθεῖσαι φύσεις, εἷς δὲ ἐξ ἀμφοῖν Χριστὸς καὶ υἱός,

It was not as though the distinctness of the natures was destroyed by the union, but divinity and humanity together made perfect for us one Lord and one Christ, together marvellously and mysteriously combining to form a unity.

οὐχ ὡς τῆς τῶν φύσεων διαφορᾶς ἀνηιρημένης διὰ τὴν ἕνωσιν, ἀποτελεσασῶν δὲ μᾶλλον ἡμῖν τὸν ἕνα κύριον καὶ Χριστὸν καὶ υἱὸν θεότητός τε καὶ ἀνθρωπότητος διὰ τῆς ἀφράστου καὶ ἀπορρήτου πρὸς ἑνότητα συνδρομῆς.

So he who existed and was begotten of the Father before all ages is also said to have been begotten according to the flesh of a woman, without the divine nature either beginning to exist in the holy virgin, or needing of itself a second begetting after that from his Father.

οὕτω τε λέγεται, καίτοι πρὸ αἰώνων ἔχων τὴν ὕπαρξιν καὶ γεννηθεὶς ἐκ πατρός, γεννηθῆναι καὶ κατὰ σάρκα ἐκ γυναικός, οὐχ ὡς τῆς θείας αὐτοῦ φύσεως ἀρχὴν τοῦ εἶναι λαβούσης ἐν τῆι ἁγίαι παρθένωι οὔτε μὴν δεηθείσης ἀναγκαίως δι' ἑαυτὴν δευτέρας γεννήσεως μετὰ τὴν ἐκ πατρός

(For it is absurd and stupid to speak of the one who existed before every age and is coeternal with the Father, needing a second beginning so as to exist.)

(ἔστιν γὰρ εἰκαῖόν τε ὁμοῦ καὶ ἀμαθὲς τὸν ὑπάρχοντα πρὸ παντὸς αἰῶνος καὶ συναίδιον τῶι πατρὶ δεῖσθαι λέγειν ἀρχῆς τῆς εἰς τὸ εἶναι δευτέραςŸ,

The Word is said to have been begotten according to the flesh, because for us and for our salvation he united what was human to himself hypostatically and came forth from a woman.

ἐπειδὴ δὲ δι' ἡμᾶς καὶ διὰ τὴν ἡμετέραν σωτηρίαν ἑνώσας ἑαυτῶι καθ' ὑπόστασιν τὸ ἀνθρώπινον προῆλθεν ἐκ γυναικός, ταύτηι τοι λέγεται γεννηθῆναι σαρκικῶς.

For he was not first begotten of the holy virgin, a man like us, and then the Word descended upon him;

οὐ γὰρ πρῶτον ἄνθρωπος ἐγεννήθη κοινὸς ἐκ τῆς ἁγίας παρθένου, εἶθ' οὕτως καταπεφοίτηκεν ἐπ' αὐτὸν ὁ λόγος,

but from the very womb of his mother he was so united and then underwent begetting according to the flesh, making his own the begetting of his own flesh.

ἀλλ' ἐξ αὐτῆς μήτρας ἑνωθεὶς ὑπομεῖναι λέγεται γέννησιν σαρκικήν, ὡς τῆς ἰδίας σαρκὸς τὴν γέννησιν οἰκειούμενος.

     2. In a similar way we say that he suffered and rose again, not that the Word of God suffered blows or piercing with nails or any other wounds in his own nature (for the divine, being without a body, is incapable of suffering), but because the body which became his own suffered these things, he is said to have suffered them for us. For he was without suffering, while his body suffered. Something similar is true of his dying. For by nature the Word of God is of itself immortal and incorruptible and life and life-giving, but since on the other hand his own body by God’s grace, as the apostle says, tasted death for all, the Word is said to have suffered death for us, not as if he himself had experienced death as far as his own nature was concerned (it would be sheer lunacy to say or to think that), but because, as I have just said, his flesh tasted death. So too, when his flesh was raised to life, we refer to this again as his resurrection, not as though he had fallen into corruption--God forbid--but because his body had been raised again.

οὕτω φαμὲν αὐτὸν καὶ παθεῖν καὶ ἀναστῆναι, οὐχ ὡς τοῦ θεοῦ λόγου παθόντος εἰς ἰδίαν φύσιν ἢ πληγὰς ἢ διατρήσεις ἥλων ἢ γοῦν τὰ ἕτερα τῶν τραυμάτων žἀπαθὲς γὰρ τὸ θεῖον, ὅτι καὶ ἀσώματονŸ, ἐπειδὴ δὲ τὸ γεγονὸς αὐτοῦ ἴδιον σῶμα πέπονθεν ταῦτα, πάλιν αὐτὸς λέγεται παθεῖν ὑπὲρ ἡμῶν· ἦν γὰρ ὁ ἀπαθὴς ἐν τῶι πάσχοντι σώματι. κατὰ τὸν ἴσον δὲ τρόπον καὶ ἐπὶ τοῦ τεθνάναι νοοῦμεν. ἀθάνατος μὲν γὰρ κατὰ φύσιν καὶ ἄφθαρτος καὶ ζωὴ καὶ ζωοποιός ἐστιν ὁ τοῦ θεοῦ λόγος· ἐπειδὴ δὲ πάλιν τὸ ἴδιον αὐτοῦ σῶμα χάριτι θεοῦ, καθά φησιν ὁ  Παῦλος, ὑπὲρ παντὸς ἐγεύσατο θανάτου, λέγεται παθεῖν αὐτὸς τὸν ὑπὲρ ἡμῶν θάνατον, οὐχ ὡς εἰς πεῖραν ἐλθὼν τοῦ θανάτου τό γε ἧκον εἰς τὴν αὐτοῦ φύσιν žἀποπληξία γὰρ τοῦτο λέγειν ἢ φρονεῖνŸ, ἀλλ' ὅτι, καθάπερ ἔφην ἀρτίως, ἡ σὰρξ αὐτοῦ ἐγεύσατο θανάτου.    1,1,1.28 οὕτω καὶ ἐγηγερμένης αὐτοῦ τῆς σαρκός, πάλιν ἡ ἀνάστασις αὐτοῦ λέγεται, οὐχ ὡς πεσόντος εἰς φθοράν, μὴ γένοιτο, ἀλλ' ὅτι τὸ αὐτοῦ πάλιν ἐγήγερται σῶμα.  

So we shall confess one Christ and one Lord. We do not adore the man along with the Word, so as to avoid any appearance of division by using the word “with”.

Οὕτω Χριστὸν ἕνα καὶ κύριον ὁμολογήσομεν, οὐχ ὡς ἄνθρωπον συμπροσκυνοῦντες τῶι λόγωι, ἵνα μὴ τομῆς φαντασία παρεισκρίνηται διὰ τοῦ λέγειν τὸ ˉσˉυˉν,

But we adore him as one and the same, because the body is not other than the Word, and takes its seat with him beside the Father, again not as though there were two sons seated together but only one, united with his own flesh. If, however, we reject the hypostatic union as being either impossible or too unlovely for the Word, we fall into the fallacy of speaking of two sons.

ἀλλ' ὡς ἕνα καὶ τὸν αὐτὸν προσκυνοῦντες, ὅτι μὴ ἀλλότριον τοῦ λόγου τὸ σῶμα αὐτοῦ, μεθ' οὗ καὶ αὐτῶι συνεδρεύει τῶι πατρί, οὐχ ὡς δύο πάλιν συνεδρευόντων υἱῶν, ἀλλ' ὡς ἑνὸς καθ' ἕνωσιν μετὰ τῆς ἰδίας σαρκός. ἐὰν δὲ τὴν καθ' ὑπόστασιν ἕνωσιν ἢ ὡς ἀνέφικτον ἢ ὡς ἀκαλλῆ παραιτώμεθα, ἐμπίπτομεν εἰς τὸ δύο λέγειν υἱούς·

We shall have to distinguish and speak both of the man as honored with the title of son, and of the Word of God as by nature possessing the name and reality of sonship, each in his own way. We ought not, therefore, to split into two sons the one Lord Jesus Christ. Such a way of presenting a correct account of the faith will be quite unhelpful, even though some do speak of a union of persons. For scripture does not say that the Word united the person of a man to himself, but that he became flesh. The Word’s becoming flesh means nothing else than that he partook of flesh and blood like us; he made our body his own, and came forth a man from woman without casting aside his deity, or his generation from God the Father, but rather in his assumption of flesh remaining what he was.

ἀνάγκη γὰρ πᾶσα διορίσαι καὶ εἰπεῖν τὸν μὲν ἄνθρωπον ἰδικῶς τῆι τοῦ υἱοῦ κλήσει τετιμημένον, ἰδικῶς δὲ πάλιν τὸν ἐκ θεοῦ λόγον υἱότητος ὄνομά τε καὶ χρῆμα ἔχοντα φυσικῶς. οὐ διαιρετέον τοιγαροῦν εἰς υἱοὺς δύο τὸν ἕνα κύριον Ἰησοῦν Χριστόν. ὀνήσει δὲ κατ' οὐδένα τρόπον τὸν ὀρθὸν τῆς πίστεως λόγον εἰς τὸ οὕτως ἔχειν, κἂν εἰ προσώπων ἕνωσιν ἐπιφημίζωσι τινές. οὐ γὰρ εἴρηκεν ἡ γραφὴ ὅτι ὁ λόγος ἀνθρώπου πρόσωπον ἥνωσεν ἑαυτῶι, ἀλλ' ὅτι γέγονε σάρξ. τὸ δὲ σάρκα γενέσθαι τὸν λόγον οὐδὲν ἕτερόν ἐστιν εἰ μὴ ὅτι παραπλησίως ἡμῖν μετέσχεν αἵματος καὶ σαρκὸς ἴδιόν τε σῶμα τὸ ἡμῶν ἐποιήσατο καὶ προῆλθεν ἄνθρωπος ἐκ γυναικός, οὐκ ἀποβεβληκὼς τὸ εἶναι θεὸς καὶ τὸ ἐκ θεοῦ γεννηθῆναι πατρός, ἀλλὰ καὶ ἐν προσλήψει σαρκὸς μεμενηκὼς ὅπερ ἦν.

This is the account of the true faith everywhere professed. So shall we find that the holy fathers believed. So have they dared to call the holy virgin, mother of God, not as though the nature of the Word or his godhead received the origin of their being from the holy virgin, but because there was born from her his holy body rationally ensouled, with which the Word was hypostatically united and is said to have been begotten in the flesh.

τοῦτο πρεσβεύει πανταχοῦ τῆς ἀκριβοῦς πίστεως ὁ λόγος· οὕτως εὑρήσομεν τοὺς ἁγίους πεφρονηκότας πατέρας· οὕτως τεθαρσήκασι θεοτόκον εἰπεῖν τὴν ἁγίαν παρθένον, οὐχ ὡς τῆς τοῦ λόγου φύσεως ἤτοι τῆς θεότητος αὐτοῦ τὴν ἀρχὴν τοῦ εἶναι λαβούσης ἐκ τῆς ἁγίας παρθένου, ἀλλ' ὡς γεννηθέντος ἐξ αὐτῆς τοῦ ἁγίου σώματος ψυχωθέντος λογικῶς, ὧι καὶ καθ' ὑπόστασιν ἑνωθεὶς ὁ λόγος γεγεννῆσθαι λέγεται κατὰ σάρκα.

These things I write out of love in Christ exhorting you as a brother and calling upon you before Christ and the elect angels, to hold and teach these things with us, in order to preserve the peace of the churches and that the priests of God may remain in an unbroken bond of concord and love.

ταῦτα καὶ νῦν ἐξ ἀγάπης τῆς ἐν Χριστῶι γράφω, παρακαλῶν ὡς ἀδελφὸν καὶ διαμαρτυρόμενος ἐνώπιον τοῦ Χριστοῦ καὶ τῶν ἐκλεκτῶν ἀγγέλων ταῦτα μεθ' ἡμῶν καὶ φρονεῖν καὶ διδάσκειν, ἵνα σώιζηται τῶν ἐκκλησιῶν ἡ εἰρήνη καὶ τῆς ὁμονοίας καὶ ἀγάπης ὁ σύνδεσμος ἀρραγὴς διαμένοι τοῖς ἱερεῦσι τοῦ θεοῦ. 


2nd Letter Nestorius to Cyril

 

SECOND LETTER of NESTORIUS to CYRIL
[condemned by the council of Ephesus]

 

 


Nestorius sends greeting in the Lord to the most religious and reverend fellow-minister Cyril. I pass over the insults against us contained in your extraordinary letter. They will, I think, be cured by my patience and by the answer which events will offer in the course of time. On one matter, however, I cannot be silent, as silence would in that case be very dangerous. On that point, therefore avoiding longwindedness as far as I can, I shall attempt a brief discussion and try to be as free as possible from repelling obscurity and undigestible prolixity. I shall begin from the wise utterances of your reverence, setting them down word for word. What then are the words in which your remarkable teaching finds expression ?

1,1,1.29  Τῶι εὐλαβεστάτωι καὶ θεοσεβεστάτωι συλλειτουργῶι Κυρίλλωι Νεστόριος ἐν κυρίωι χαίρειν. Τὰς μὲν καθ' ἡμῶν ὕβρεις τῶν θαυμαστῶν σου γραμμάτων ἀφίημι ὡς μακροθυμίας ἀξίας ἰατρικῆς καὶ τῆς διὰ τῶν πραγμάτων αὐτῶν κατὰ καιρὸν πρὸς αὐτὰς ἀποκρίσεως· ὃ δέ γε σιωπῆς οὐκ ἀνέχεται, ὡς μέγαν φέρον, εἰ σιγηθείη, τὸν κίνδυνον, τούτου, καθὼς ἂν οἷός τε ὦ, οὐ πρὸς μακρολογίαν ἀποτεινόμενος, ποιήσασθαι πειράσομαι τὴν διήγησιν σύντομον, τὸν τῆς σκοτεινῆς καὶ δυσπέπτου μακρηγορίας ναυτιασμὸν φυλαττόμενος. ἄρξομαι δὲ ἀπὸ τῶν πανσόφων τῆς σῆς ἀγάπης φωνῶν, αὐτὰς αὐτολεξεὶ παραθείς. τίνες τοίνυν αἱ τῆς θαυμαστῆς τῶν σῶν γραμμάτων διδασκαλίας φωναί;

“The holy and great synod states that the only begotten Son, begotten of God the Father according to nature, true God from true God, the light from the light, the one through whom the Father made all things, came down, became incarnate, became man, suffered, rose.”

  Ἡ ἁγία φησὶν καὶ μεγάλη σύνοδος αὐτὸν τὸν ἐκ θεοῦ πατρὸς κατὰ φύσιν γεννηθέντα υἱὸν μονογενῆ, τὸν ἐκ θεοῦ ἀληθινοῦ θεὸν ἀληθινόν, τὸ φῶς τὸ ἐκ φωτός, τὸν δι' οὗ τὰ πάντα πεποίηκεν ὁ πατήρ, κατελθεῖν σαρκωθῆναι ἐνανθρωπῆσαι παθεῖν ἀναστῆναι.  

These are the words of your reverence and you may recognise them. Now listen to what we say, which takes the form of a brotherly exhortation to piety of the type of which the great apostle Paul gave an example in addressing his beloved Timothy:

Ταῦτα τῆς σῆς θεοσεβείας τὰ ῥήματα καὶ γνωρίζεις ἴσως τὰ σά· ἄκουε δὲ καὶ τὰ παρ' ἡμῶν, ἀδελφικὴν ὑπὲρ εὐσεβείας παραίνεσιν καὶ ἣν ὁ μέγας ἐκεῖνος Παῦλος τῶι φιλουμένωι παρ' αὐτοῦ Τιμοθέωι διεμαρτύρατο·

 “Attend to the public reading of scripture, to preaching, to teaching. For by so doing you will save both yourself and your hearers”. Tell me, what does “attend” mean? By reading in a superficial way the tradition of those holy men (you were guilty of a pardonable ignorance), you concluded that they said that the Word who is coeternal with the Father was passible.

<πρόσεχε τῆι ἀναγνώσει, τῆι παρακλήσει, τῆι διδαχῆι. τοῦτο γὰρ ποιῶν καὶ σεαυτὸν σώσεις καὶ τοὺς ἀκούοντάς σου.> τί δέ μοι τὸ <πρόσεχε> βούλεται; ὅτι τὴν τῶν ἁγίων ἐκείνων ἐξ ἐπιπολῆς ἀναγινώσκων παράδοσιν συγγνώμης ἀξίαν ἠγνόησας ἄγνοιαν, παθητὸν αὐτοὺς εἰρηκέναι νομίσας τὸν τῶι πατρὶ συναίδιον λόγον·

Please look more closely at their language and you will find out that that divine choir of fathers never said that the consubstantial godhead was capable of suffering, or that the whole being that was coeternal with the Father was recently born, or that it rose again, seeing that it had itself been the cause of resurrection of the destroyed temple.

ἔγκυψον δέ, εἰ δοκεῖ, τοῖς ῥητοῖς ἀκριβέστερον καὶ τὸν θεῖον ἐκεῖνον τῶν πατέρων εὑρήσεις χορὸν οὐ τὴν ὁμοούσιον θεότητα παθητὴν εἰρηκότα οὐδὲ πρόσφατον γεννητὴν τὴν τῶι πατρὶ συναίδιον οὐδὲ ἀναστᾶσαν τὴν τὸν λελυμένον ναὸν ἀναστήσασαν.

If you apply my words as fraternal medicine, I shall set the words of the holy fathers before you and shall free them from the slander against them and through them against the holy scriptures.

κἄν μοι τὰς ἀκοὰς εἰς ἀδελφικὴν ἰατρείαν παράσχηις, αὐτάς σοι τὰς τῶν ἁγίων πατέρων φωνὰς παραθέμενος τῆς κατ' ἐκείνων ἀπαλλάξω συκοφαντίας καὶ τῆς κατὰ τῶν θείων γραφῶν δι' ἐκείνων.

“I believe”, they say, “also in our Lord Jesus Christ, his only begotten Son”. See how they first lay as foundations “Lord” and “Jesus” and “Christ” and “only begotten” and “Son”, the names which belong jointly to the divinity and humanity. Then they build on that foundation the tradition of the incarnation and resurrection and passion.

Πιστεύω τοίνυν φασί, καὶ εἰς τὸν κύριον ἡμῶν Ἰησοῦν Χριστὸν τὸν υἱὸν αὐτοῦ τὸν μονογενῆ. σκόπησον ὅπως τὸ κύριος καὶ Ἰησοῦς καὶ Χριστός καὶ μονογενής καὶ υἱός πρότερον θέντες τὰ κοινὰ τῆς θεότητος καὶ τῆς ἀνθρωπότητος ὡς θεμελίους ὀνόματα 1,1,1.30 τότε τὴν τῆς ἐνανθρωπήσεως καὶ τῆς ἀναστάσεως καὶ τοῦ πάθους ἐποικοδομοῦσι παράδοσιν,

In this way, by prefixing the names which are common to each nature, they intend to avoid separating expressions applicable to sonship and lordship and at the same time escape the danger of destroying the distinctive character of the natures by absorbing them into the one title of “Son”.

ἵνα τῶν ὀνομάτων τῆς φύσεως ἑκατέρας κοινῶν τινων σημαντικῶν προκειμένων μήτε τὰ τῆς υἱότητος καὶ κυριότητος τέμνηται μήτε τὰ τῶν φύσεων ἐν τῶι τῆς υἱότητος μοναδικῶι συγχύσεως ἀφανισμῶι κινδυνεύηι.

In this Paul was their teacher who, when he remembers the divine becoming man and then wishes to introduce the suffering, first mentions “Christ”, which, as I have just said, is the common name of both natures and then adds an expression which is appropriate to both of the natures. For what does he say ? “Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus who though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped”, and so on until, “he became obedient unto death, even death on a cross”.

τούτου γὰρ αὐτοῖς παιδευτὴς ὁ Παῦλος γεγένηται, ὃς τῆς ἐνανθρωπήσεως τῆς θείας τὴν μνήμην ποιούμενος καὶ μέλλων τὰ τοῦ πάθους ἐπάγειν, πρότερον θεὶς τὸ Χριστός, τὸ κοινόν, ὡς μικρῶι πρότερον ἔφην, τῶν φύσεων ὄνομα, προσάγει τὸν λόγον ἀμφοτέραις πρεπώδη ταῖς φύσεσιν. τί γάρ φησιν; <τοῦτο φρονείσθω ἐν ὑμῖν ὃ καὶ ἐν Χριστῶι Ἰησοῦ, ὃς ἐν μορφῆι θεοῦ ὑπάρχων οὐχ ἁρπαγμὸν ἡγήσατο τὸ εἶναι ἴσα θεῶι.> ἀλλ', ἵνα μὴ τὰ καθ' ἕκαστον λέγω, <ὑπήκοος ἐγένετο μέχρι θανάτου, θανάτου δὲ σταυροῦ.>

For when he was about to mention the death, to prevent anyone supposing that God the Word suffered, he says “Christ”, which is a title that expresses in one person both the impassible and the passible natures, in order that Christ might be called without impropriety both impassible and passible impassible in godhead, passible in the nature of his body.

ἐπειδὴ γὰρ ἔμελλεν τοῦ θανάτου μεμνῆσθαι, ἵνα μὴ τὸν θεὸν λόγον ἐντεῦθέν τις παθητὸν ὑπολάβηι, τίθησιν τὸ Χριστός, ὡς τῆς ἀπαθοῦς καὶ παθητῆς οὐσίας ἐν μοναδικῶι προσώπωι προσηγορίαν σημαντικήν, ὅπως καὶ ἀπαθὴς ὁ Χριστὸς καὶ παθητὸς ἀκινδύνως καλοῖτο, ἀπαθὴς μὲν θεότητι, παθητὸς δὲ τῆι τοῦ σώματος φύσει.

I could say much on this subject and first of all that those holy fathers, when they discuss the economy, speak not of the generation but of the Son becoming man. But I recall the promise of brevity that I made at the beginning and that both restrains my discourse and moves me on to the second subject of your reverence. In that I applaud your division of natures into manhood and godhead and their conjunction in one person. I also applaud your statement that God the Word needed no second generation from a woman, and your confession that the godhead is incapable of suffering.

Πολλὰ λέγειν περὶ τούτου δυνάμενος καὶ πρῶτόν γε τὸ μηδὲ γεννήσεως ἐπὶ τῆς οἰκονομίας, ἀλλ' ἐνανθρωπήσεως τοὺς ἁγίους ἐκείνους μνημονεῦσαι πατέρας, τὴν τῆς βραχυλογίας ἐν προοιμίοις ὑπόσχεσιν χαλινοῦσαν τὸν λόγον αἰσθάνομαι καὶ πρὸς τὸ δεύτερον τῆς σῆς ἀγάπης κινοῦσαν κεφάλαιον, ἐν ὧι τὴν μὲν τῶν φύσεων ἐπήινουν διαίρεσιν κατὰ τὸν τῆς ἀνθρωπότητος καὶ θεότητος λόγον καὶ τὴν τούτων εἰς ἑνὸς προσώπου συνάφειαν καὶ τὸ τὸν θεὸν λόγον δευτέρας ἐκ γυναικὸς μὴ φάσκειν δεδεῆσθαι γεννήσεως καὶ τὸ πάθους ἄδεκτον ὁμολογεῖν τὴν θεότητα.

Such statements are truly orthodox and equally opposed to the evil opinions of all heretics about the Lord’s natures. If the remainder was an attempt to introduce some hidden and incomprehensible wisdom to the ears of the readers, it is for your sharpness to decide.

ὀρθόδοξα γὰρ ὡς ἀληθῶς τὰ τοιαῦτα καὶ ταῖς τῶν αἱρέσεων πασῶν περὶ τὰς δεσποτικὰς φύσεις ἐναντία κακοδοξίαις. τὰ λοιπὰ δὲ εἰ μέν τινα σοφίαν κεκρυμμένην ἐπήγετο ταῖς τῶν ἀναγινωσκόντων ἀκοαῖς ἀκατάληπτον, τῆς σῆς ἐστιν ἀκριβείας εἰδέναι·

In my view these subsequent views seemed to subvert what came first. They suggested that he who had at the beginning been proclaimed as impassible and incapable of a second generation had somehow become capable of suffering and freshly created,

ἐμοὶ γοῦν τὰ πρῶτα καταστρέφειν ἐδόκει. τὸν γὰρ ἐν τοῖς πρώτοις ἀπαθῆ κηρυχθέντα καὶ δευτέρας γεννήσεως ἄδεκτον πάλιν παθητὸν καὶ νεόκτιστον οὐκ οἶδ' ὅπως εἰσῆγεν,

as though what belonged to God the Word by nature had been destroyed by his conjunction with his temple or as though people considered it not enough that the sinless temple, which is inseparable from the divine nature, should have endured birth and death for sinners, or finally as though the Lord’s voice was not deserving of credence when it cried out to the Jews: “Destroy this temple and in three days I will raise it up.’’ He did not say, “Destroy my godhead and in three days it will be raised up.”

ὡς τῶν κατὰ φύσιν τῶι θεῶι λόγωι προσόντων τῆι τοῦ ναοῦ συναφείαι διεφθαρμένων ἢ μικροῦ τινος τοῖς ἀνθρώποις νομιζομένου τοῦ τὸν ἀναμάρτητον ναὸν καὶ τῆς θείας ἀχώριστον φύσεως τὴν ὑπὲρ ἁμαρτωλῶν γέννησίν τε καὶ τελευτὴν ὑπομεῖναι ἢ πιστεύεσθαι τῆς δεσποτικῆς οὐκ ὀφειλούσης φωνῆς πρὸς Ἰουδαίους βοώσης· <λύσατε τὸν ναὸν τοῦτον, καὶ ἐν τρισὶν ἡμέραις ἐγερῶ αὐτόν,> οὐ· λύσατέ μου τὴν θεότητα καὶ ἐν τρισὶν ἡμέραις ἐγερθήσεται.

Again I should like to expand on this but am restrained by the memory of my promise. I must speak therefore but with brevity. Holy scripture, wherever it recalls the Lord’s economy, speaks of the birth and suffering not of the godhead but of the humanity of Christ, so that the holy virgin is more accurately termed mother of Christ than mother of God.

Πάλιν πλατῦναι κἀνταῦθα βουλόμενος, τῆι τῆς ἐπαγγελίας ἀναστέλλομαι μνήμηι· ῥητέον δ' οὖν ὅμως βραχυλογίαι χρησάμενον. πανταχοῦ τῆς θείας γραφῆς, ἡνίκα ἂν 1,1,1.31 μνήμην τῆς δεσποτικῆς οἰκονομίας ποιῆται, γέννησις ἡμῖν καὶ πάθος οὐ τῆς θεότητος, ἀλλὰ τῆς ἀνθρωπότητος τοῦ Χριστοῦ παραδίδοται, ὡς καλεῖσθαι κατὰ ἀκριβεστέραν προσηγορίαν τὴν ἁγίαν παρθένον Χριστοτόκον, οὐ θεοτόκον.

Hear these words that the gospels proclaim: “The book of the generation of Jesus Christ, son of David, son of Abraham.” It is clear that God the Word was not the son of David. Listen to another witness if you will: “Jacob begat Joseph, the husband of Mary, of whom was born Jesus, who is called the Christ. “

καὶ ἄκουε ταῦτα τῶν εὐαγγελίων βοώντων· <Βίβλος,> φησίν, <γενέσεως Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ υἱοῦ Δαυὶδ υἱοῦ Ἁβραάμ.> δῆλον δὲ ὅτι τοῦ Δαυὶδ υἱὸς ὁ θεὸς λόγος οὐκ ἦν. δέχου καὶ ἄλλην, εἰ δοκεῖ, μαρτυρίαν· <Ἰακὼβ δὲ ἐγέννησε τὸν Ἰωσὴφ τὸν ἄνδρα Μαρίας, ἐξ ἧς ἐγεννήθη Ἰησοῦς ὁ λεγόμενος Χριστός.>

Consider a further piece of evidence: “Now the birth of Jesus Christ took place in this way. When his mother Mary had been betrothed to Joseph, she was found to be with child of the holy Spirit.” But who would ever consider that the godhead of the only begotten was a creature of the Spirit? Why do we need to mention: “the mother of Jesus was there”? And again what of: “with Mary the mother of Jesus”; or “that which is conceived in her is of the holy Spirit”; and “Take the child and his mother and flee to Egypt”; and “concerning his Son, who was born of the seed of David according to the flesh”?

σκόπει πάλιν ἑτέραν ἡμᾶς διαμαρτυρομένην φωνήν· <τοῦ δὲ Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ ἡ γέννησις οὕτως ἦν. μνηστευθείσης γὰρ τῆς μητρὸς αὐτοῦ  Μαρίας τῶι Ἰωσήφ, εὑρέθη ἐν γαστρὶ ἔχουσα ἐκ πνεύματος ἁγίου.> κτίσμα δὲ πνεύματος τίς ἂν τὴν τοῦ μονογενοῦς ὑπολάβοι θεότητα; τί δεῖ λέγειν καὶ τὸ <ἦν ἡ μήτηρ τοῦ Ἰησοῦ ἐκεῖ;> καὶ πάλιν τὸ <σὺν Μαρίαι τῆι μητρὶ τοῦ Ἰησοῦ> καὶ τὸ <τὸ ἐν αὐτῆι γεννηθὲν ἐκ πνεύματός ἐστιν ἁγίου> καὶ τὸ <λάβε τὸ παιδίον καὶ τὴν μητέρα αὐτοῦ καὶ φεῦγε εἰς Αἴγυπτον> καὶ τὸ <περὶ τοῦ υἱοῦ αὐτοῦ τοῦ γενομένου ἐκ σπέρματος Δαυὶδ κατὰ σάρκα>

Again, scripture says when speaking of his passion: “God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and for sin, he condemned sin in the flesh”; and again “Christ died for our sins” and “Christ having suffered in the flesh”; and “This is”, not “my godhead”, but “my body, broken for you”.

καὶ περὶ τοῦ πάθους αὖθις ὅτι ὁ <θεὸς τὸν ἑαυτοῦ υἱὸν πέμψας ἐν ὁμοιώματι σαρκὸς ἁμαρτίας καὶ περὶ ἁμαρτίας κατέκρινε τὴν ἁμαρτίαν ἐν τῆι σαρκί> καὶ πάλιν <Χριστὸς ἀπέθανεν ὑπὲρ τῶν ἁμαρτιῶν ἡμῶν> καὶ <Χριστοῦ παθόντος σαρκί> καὶ <τοῦτό ἐστιν,> οὐχ ἡ θεότης μου, ἀλλὰ <τὸ σῶμα τὸ ὑπὲρ ὑμῶν κλώμενον.>

Ten thousand other expressions witness to the human race that they should not think that it was the godhead of the Son that was recently killed but the flesh which was joined to the nature of the godhead. (Hence also Christ calls himself the lord and son of David: “ ‘What do you think of the Christ ? Whose son is he ?’ They said to him, ‘The son of David.’ Jesus answered and said to them, ‘How is it then that David inspired by the Spirit, calls him Lord, saying, “The Lord said to my Lord, sit at my right hand”?’“. He said this as being indeed son of David according to the flesh, but his Lord according to his godhead.)

καὶ ἄλλων μυρίων φωνῶν διαμαρτυρομένων τῶν ἀνθρώπων τὸ γένος μὴ τὴν τοῦ υἱοῦ νομίζειν θεότητα πρόσφατον ἢ πάθους σωματικοῦ δεκτικήν, ἀλλὰ τὴν συνημμένην τῆι φύσει τῆς θεότητος σάρκα žὅθεν καὶ κύριον τοῦ Δαυὶδ ἑαυτὸν ὁ Χριστὸς καὶ υἱὸν ὀνομάζει· <τί γάρ> φησιν, <ὑμῖν δοκεῖ περὶ τοῦ Χριστοῦ; τίνος υἱός ἐστι; λέγουσιν αὐτῶι· τοῦ Δαυίδ. ἀπεκρίθη Ἰησοῦς καὶ εἶπεν αὐτοῖς· πῶς οὖν Δαυὶδ ἐν πνεύματι κύριον αὐτὸν καλεῖ, λέγων· εἶπεν ὁ κύριος τῶι κυρίωι μου· κάθου ἐκ δεξιῶν μου;> ὡς υἱὸς ὢν πάντως τοῦ  Δαυὶδ κατὰ σάρκα, κατὰ δὲ τὴν θεότητα κύριος,

The body therefore is the temple of the deity of the Son, a temple which is united to it in a high and divine conjunction, so that the divine nature accepts what belongs to the body as its own. Such a confession is noble and worthy of the gospel traditions. But to use the expression “accept as its own” as a way of diminishing the properties of the conjoined flesh, birth, suffering and entombment, is a mark of those whose minds are led astray, my brother, by Greek thinking or are sick with the lunacy of Apollinarius and Arius or the other heresies or rather something more serious than these.

εἶναι μὲν οὖν τῆς τοῦ υἱοῦ θεότητος τὸ σῶμα ναὸν καὶ ναὸν κατ' ἄκραν τινὰ καὶ θείαν ἡνωμένον συνάφειαν, ὡς οἰκειοῦσθαι τὰ τούτου τὴν τῆς θεότητος φύσιν, ὁμολογεῖσθαι καλὸν καὶ τῶν εὐαγγελικῶν παραδόσεων ἄξιον· τὸ δὲ δὴ τῶι τῆς οἰκειότητος προστρίβειν ὀνόματι καὶ τὰς τῆς συνημμένης σαρκὸς ἰδιότητας, γέννησιν λέγω καὶ πάθος καὶ νέκρωσιν, ἢ πλανωμένης ἐστίν, ἀδελφέ, καθ' Ἕλληνας διανοίας ἢ τὰ τοῦ φρενοβλαβοῦς Ἀπολιναρίου καὶ Ἀρείου καὶ τῶν ἄλλων νοσούσης αἱρέσεων, μᾶλλον δέ τι κἀκείνων βαρύτερον.

For it is necessary for such as are attracted by the name “propriety” to make God the Word share, because of this same propriety, in being fed on milk, in gradual growth, in terror at the time of his passion and in need of angelical assistance. I make no mention of circumcision and sacrifice and sweat and hunger, which all belong to the flesh and are adorable as having taken place for our sake. But it would be false to apply such ideas to the deity and would involve us in just accusation because of our calumny.

ἀνάγκη γὰρ τῶι τῆς οἰκειότητος τοὺς τοιούτους παρασυρομένους ὀνόματι καὶ γαλακτοτροφίας κοινωνὸν διὰ τὴν οἰκειότητα τὸν θεὸν λόγον ποιεῖν καὶ τῆς κατὰ μικρὸν αὐξήσεως μέτοχον καὶ τῆς ἐν τῶι τοῦ πάθους καιρῶι    1,1,1.32 δειλίας καὶ βοηθείας ἀγγελικῆς ἐνδεᾶ. καὶ σιωπῶ περιτομὴν καὶ θυσίαν καὶ ἱδρῶτας καὶ πεῖναν, ἃ τῆι σαρκὶ μὲν ὡς δι' ἡμᾶς συμβάντα προσκυνητὰ προσαπτόμενα, ἐπὶ δὲ τῆς θεότητος ταῦτα καὶ ψευδῆ λαμβανόμενα καὶ ἡμῖν ὡς συκοφάνταις δικαίας κατακρίσεως αἴτια.

These are the traditions of the holy fathers. These are the precepts of the holy scriptures. In this way does someone write in a godly way about the divine mercy and power, “Practise these duties, devote yourself to them, so that all may see your progress’’. This is what Paul says to all. The care you take in labouring for those who have been scandalised is well taken and we are grateful to you both for the thought you devote to things divine and for the concern you have even for those who live here.

Αὗται τῶν ἁγίων πατέρων αἱ παραδόσεις· ταῦτα τῶν θείων γραφῶν τὰ παραγγέλματα· οὕτω τις καὶ τὰ τῆς φιλανθρωπίας τῆς θείας καὶ τὰ τῆς αὐθεντίας θεολογεῖ· <ταῦτα μελέτα· ἐν τούτοις ἴσθι, ἵνα σοῦ ἡ προκοπὴ φανερὰ ἦι πᾶσιν,> ὁ Παῦλος πρὸς πάντας φησίν. τῆς δέ γε τῶν σκανδαλιζομένων φροντίδος καλῶς μὲν ποιεῖς ἀντεχόμενος καὶ χάρις τῆι τῶν θείων μεριμνητικῆι σου ψυχῆι καὶ τῶν παρ' ἡμῖν φροντιζούσηι·

But you should realise that you have been misled either by some here who have been deposed by the holy synod for Manichaeism or by clergy of your own persuasion. In fact the church daily progresses here and through the grace of Christ there is such an increase among the people that those who behold it cry out with the words of the prophet, “The earth will be filled with the knowledge of the Lord as the water covers the sea”.

γίνωσκε δὲ πεπλανημένον σαυτὸν ὑπὸ τῶν ἐνταῦθα παρὰ τῆς ἁγίας συνόδου καθηιρημένων, ὡς τὰ Μανιχαίων φρονούντων, ἢ τῶν τῆς σῆς ἴσως διαθέσεως κληρικῶν. τὰ γὰρ τῆς ἐκκλησίας καθ' ἑκάστην προκόπτει καὶ τὰ τῶν λαῶν ἐν ἐπιδόσει διὰ τὴν τοῦ Χριστοῦ χάριν τοσαύτηι, ὡς τὰ τοῦ προφήτου τοὺς βλέποντας τὰ πλήθη βοᾶν· <πλησθήσεται ἡ γῆ τοῦ γνῶναι τὸν κύριον ὡς ὕδωρ πολὺ κατακαλύψαι θαλάσσας.>

As for our sovereigns, they are in great joy as the light of doctrine is spread abroad and, to be brief, because of the state of all the heresies that fight against God and of the orthodoxy of the church, one might find that verse fulfilled “The house of Saul grew weaker and weaker and the house of David grew stronger and stronger”.

τά τε τῶν βασιλέων ἐν ὑπερβαλλούσηι χαρᾶι πεφωτισμένου τοῦ δόγματος, καὶ ἵνα συνελὼν ἐπιστείλω, ἐκείνην ἐπὶ ταῖς θεομάχοις ἁπάσαις αἱρέσεσιν καὶ τῆι τῆς ἐκκλησίας ὀρθοδοξίαι καθ' ἑκάστην εὕροι τις ἂν παρ' ἡμῖν τὴν φωνὴν πληρουμένην· ὁ <οἶκος Σαοὺλ ἐπορεύετο καὶ ἠσθένει καὶ ὁ οἶκος Δαυὶδ ἐπορεύετο καὶ ἐκραταιοῦτο.>

This is our advice from a brother to a brother. “If anyone is disposed to be contentious”, Paul will cry out through us to such a one, “we recognize no other practice, neither do the churches of God”. I and those with me greet all the brotherhood with you in Christ. May you remain strong and continue praying for us, most honored and reverent lord.

Ταῦτα τὰ παρ' ἡμῶν ὡς ἀδελφῶν πρὸς ἀδελφὸν συμβουλεύματα· <εἰ δέ τις φιλονεικεῖ,> κεκράξεται καὶ δι' ἡμῶν πρὸς τὸν τοιοῦτον ὁ Παῦλος <ἡμεῖς τοιαύτην συνήθειαν οὐκ ἔχομεν οὐδὲ αἱ ἐκκλησίαι τοῦ θεοῦ.> πᾶσαν τὴν σὺν σοὶ ἐν Χριστῶι ἀδελφότητα ἐγώ τε καὶ οἱ σὺν ἐμοὶ πλεῖστα προσαγορεύομεν. ἐρρωμένος ὑπερευχόμενος ἡμῶν διατελοίης, δέσποτα τιμιώτατε καὶ θεοσεβέστατε.


3rd Letter of Cyril to Nestorius

 

THIRD LETTER of CYRIL to NESTORIUS
[Read at the council of Ephesus and included in the proceedings]

 

 


We believe in one God . . .[Nicene Creed]

 

Following in all points the confessions of the holy fathers, which they made with the holy Spirit speaking in them, and following the direction of their opinions and going as it were in the royal way, we say that the only-begotten Word of God, who was begotten from the very essence of the Father, true God from true God, the light from the light and the one through whom all things in heaven and earth were made, for our salvation came down and emptying himself he became incarnate and was made man. This means that

̔Επόμενοι δὲ πανταχῆι ταῖς τῶν ἁγίων πατέρων ὁμολογίαις αἷς πεποίηνται λαλοῦντος ἐν αὐτοῖς τοῦ ἁγίου πνεύματος καὶ τῶν ἐν αὐτοῖς ἐννοιῶν ἰχνηλατοῦντες τὸν σκοπὸν καὶ βασιλικὴν ὥσπερ ἐρχόμενοι τρίβον φαμὲν ὅτι αὐτὸς ὁ μονογενὴς τοῦ θεοῦ λόγος ὁ ἐξ αὐτῆς γεννηθεὶς τῆς οὐσίας τοῦ πατρός, ὁ ἐκ θεοῦ ἀληθινοῦ θεὸς ἀληθινός, τὸ φῶς τὸ ἐκ τοῦ φωτός, ὁ δι' οὗ τὰ πάντα ἐγένετο τά τε ἐν τῶι οὐρανῶι καὶ τὰ ἐν τῆι γῆι, τῆς ἡμετέρας ἕνεκα σωτηρίας κατελθὼν καὶ καθεὶς ἑαυτὸν εἰς κένωσιν ἐσαρκώθη τε καὶ ἐνηνθρώπησε, τουτέστι

·  he took flesh from the holy virgin and made it his own, undergoing a birth like ours from her womb and coming forth a man from a woman.

·  σάρκα λαβὼν ἐκ τῆς ἁγίας παρθένου καὶ ἰδίαν αὐτὴν ποιησάμενος ἐκ μήτρας τὴν καθ' ἡμᾶς ὑπέμεινε γέννησιν καὶ προῆλθεν ἄνθρωπος ἐκ γυναικός,

·  He did not cast aside what he was, but although he assumed flesh and blood, he remained what he was, God in nature and truth.

·  οὐχ ὅπερ ἦν, ἀποβεβληκώς, ἀλλ' εἰ καὶ γέγονεν ἐν προσλήψει σαρκὸς καὶ αἵματος, καὶ οὕτω μεμενηκὼς ὅπερ ἦν, θεὸς δηλονότι φύσει τε καὶ ἀληθείαι.

·  We do not say that his flesh was turned into the nature of the godhead or that the unspeakable Word of God was changed into the nature of the flesh. For he (the Word) is unalterable and absolutely unchangeable and remains always the same as the scriptures say. For although visible as a child and in swaddling cloths, even while he was in the bosom of the virgin that bore him, as God he filled the whole of creation and was fellow ruler with him who begot him. For the divine is without quantity and dimension and cannot be subject to circumscription.

·  οὔτε δὲ τὴν σάρκα φαμὲν εἰς θεότητος τραπῆναι φύσιν οὔτε μὴν εἰς φύσιν σαρκὸς τὴν ἀπόρρητον τοῦ θεοῦ λόγου παρενεχθῆναι φύσιν. ἄτρεπτος γάρ ἐστιν καὶ ἀναλλοίωτος παντελῶς ὁ αὐτὸς ἀεὶ μένων κατὰ τὰς γραφάς, ὁρώμενος δὲ καὶ βρέφος καὶ ἐν σπαργάνοις ὢν ἔτι καὶ ἐν κόλπωι τῆς τεκούσης παρθένου πᾶσαν ἐπλήρου τὴν κτίσιν ὡς θεὸς καὶ σύνεδρος ἦν τῶι γεγεννηκότι· τὸ γὰρ θεῖον ἄποσόν τέ ἐστιν καὶ ἀμέγεθες καὶ περιορισμῶν οὐκ ἀνέχεται.

We confess the Word to have been made one with the flesh hypostatically, and we adore one Son and Lord, Jesus Christ. We do not divide him into parts and separate man and God in him, as though the two natures were mutually united only through a unity of dignity and authority; that would be an empty expression and nothing more. Nor do we give the name Christ in one sense to the Word of God and in another to him who was born of woman, but we know only one Christ, the Word from God the Father with his own flesh. As man he was anointed with us, even though he himself gives the Spirit to those who are worthy to receive it and not in measure, as the blessed evangelist John says.

  ἡνῶσθαί γε μὴν σαρκὶ καθ' ὑπόστασιν ὁμολογοῦντες τὸν λόγον, ἕνα προσκυνοῦμεν υἱὸν καὶ κύριον Ἰησοῦν Χριστόν, οὔτε ἀνὰ μέρος τιθέντες καὶ διορίζοντες ἄνθρωπον καὶ θεὸν ὡς συνημμένους ἀλλήλοις τῆι τῆς ἀξίας καὶ αὐθεντίας ἑνότητι žκενοφωνία γὰρ τοῦτο καὶ ἕτερον οὐδένŸ οὔτε μὴν Χριστὸν ἰδικῶς ὀνομάζοντες τὸν ἐκ θεοῦ λόγον καὶ ὁμοίως ἰδικῶς Χριστὸν ἕτερον τὸν ἐκ γυναικός, ἀλλ' ἕνα μόνον εἰδότες Χριστὸν τὸν ἐκ θεοῦ πατρὸς λόγον μετὰ τῆς ἰδίας σαρκός. τότε γὰρ ἀνθρωπίνως κέχρισται μεθ' ἡμῶν, καίτοι τοῖς ἀξίοις τοῦ λαβεῖν τὸ πνεῦμα διδοὺς αὐτὸς καὶ οὐκ ἐκ μέτρου, καθά φησιν ὁ μακάριος εὐαγγελιστὴς Ἰωάννης.

But we do not say that the Word of God dwelt as in an ordinary man born of the holy virgin, in order that Christ may not be thought of as a God-bearing man. For even though “the Word dwelt among us”, and it is also said that in Christ dwelt “all the fullness of the godhead bodily”, we understand that, having become flesh, the manner of his indwelling is not defined in the same way as he is said to dwell among the saints, he was united by nature and not turned into flesh and he made his indwelling in such a way as we may say that the soul of man does in his own body.

ἀλλ' οὐδὲ ἐκεῖνο φαμὲν ὅτι κατώικηκεν ὁ ἐκ θεοῦ λόγος ὡς ἐν ἀνθρώπωι κοινῶι τῶι ἐκ τῆς ἁγίας παρθένου γεγεννημένωι, ἵνα μὴ θεοφόρος ἄνθρωπος νοοῖτο Χριστός. εἰ γὰρ καὶ <ἐσκήνωσεν ἐν ἡμῖν> ὁ λόγος, εἴρηται δὲ καὶ ἐν Χριστῶι κατοικῆσαι <πᾶν τὸ πλήρωμα τῆς θεότητος σωματικῶς,> ἀλλ' οὖν ἐννοοῦμεν ὅτι γενόμενος σάρξ, οὐχ ὥσπερ ἐν τοῖς ἁγίοις κατοικῆσαι λέγεται, κατὰ τὸν ἴσον καὶ ἐν αὐτῶι τρόπον γενέσθαι διοριζόμεθα τὴν κατοίκησιν· ἀλλ' ἑνωθεὶς κατὰ φύσιν καὶ οὐκ εἰς σάρκα τραπείς, τοιαύτην ἐποιήσατο τὴν κατοίκησιν, ἣν ἂν ἔχειν λέγοιτο καὶ ἡ τοῦ ἀνθρώπου ψυχὴ πρὸς τὸ ἴδιον ἑαυτῆς σῶμα.

There is therefore one Christ and Son and Lord, but not with the sort of conjunction that a man might have with God as unity of dignity or authority. Equality of honor by itself is unable to unite natures. For Peter and John were equal in honor to each other, being both of them apostles and holy disciples, but they were two, not one. Neither do we understand the manner of conjunction to be one of juxtaposition for this is not enough for natural union. Nor yet is it a question of relative participation, as we ourselves, being united to the Lord, are as it is written in the words of scripture “one spirit with him”. Rather do we deprecate the term “conjunction” as being inadequate to express the idea of union.

εἷς οὖν ἄρα Χριστὸς καὶ υἱὸς καὶ κύριος, οὐχ ὡς συνάφειαν ἁπλῶς τὴν ὡς ἐν ἑνότητι τῆς ἀξίας ἢ γοῦν αὐθεντίας ἔχοντος ἀνθρώπου πρὸς θεόν· οὐ γὰρ ἑνοῖ τὰς φύσεις [ἡ] ἰσοτιμία. καὶ γοῦν Πέτρος τε καὶ Ἰωάννης ἰσότιμοι μὲν ἀλλήλοις καθὸ καὶ ἀπόστολοι καὶ ἅγιοι μαθηταί, πλὴν οὐχ εἷς οἱ δύο. οὔτε μὴν κατὰ παράθεσιν τὸν τῆς συναφείας νοοῦμεν τρόπον žοὐκ ἀπόχρη γὰρ τοῦτο πρὸς ἕνωσιν φυσικήνŸ οὔτε μὴν ὡς κατὰ μέθεξιν σχετικήν, ὡς καὶ ἡμεῖς κολλώμενοι τῶι κυρίωι κατὰ τὸ γεγραμμένον ἓν πνεῦμα ἐσμὲν πρὸς αὐτόν, μᾶλλον δὲ τὸ τῆς συναφείας ὄνομα παραιτούμεθα ὡς οὐκ ἔχον ἱκανῶς σημῆναι τὴν ἕνωσιν.

Nor do we call the Word from God the Father, the God or Lord of Christ. To speak in that way would appear to split into two the one Christ and Son and Lord and we might in this way fall under the charge of blasphemy, making him the God and Lord of himself. For, as we have already said, the Word of God was united hypostatically with the flesh and is God of all and Lord of the universe, but is neither his own slave or master. For it is foolish or rather impious to think or to speak in this way.

ἀλλ' οὐδὲ θεὸν ἢ δεσπότην τοῦ  Χριστοῦ τὸν ἐκ θεοῦ πατρὸς λόγον ὀνομάζομεν, ἵνα μὴ πάλιν ἀναφανδὸν τέμνωμεν εἰς δύο τὸν ἕνα Χριστὸν καὶ υἱὸν καὶ κύριον καὶ δυσφημίας ἐγκλήματι περιπέσωμεν, θεὸν ἑαυτοῦ καὶ δεσπότην ποιοῦντες αὐτόν. ἑνωθεὶς γάρ, ὡς ἤδη προείπομεν, ὁ τοῦ θεοῦ λόγος σαρκὶ καθ' ὑπόστασιν θεὸς μέν ἐστι τῶν ὅλων, δεσπόζει δὲ τοῦ παντός, οὔτε δὲ αὐτὸς ἑαυτοῦ δοῦλός ἐστιν οὔτε δεσπότης. εὔηθες γάρ, μᾶλλον δὲ ἤδη καὶ δυσσεβὲς τὸ οὕτω φρονεῖν ἢ λέγειν.

It is true that he called the Father “God” even though he was himself God by nature and of his being, we are not ignorant of the fact that at the same time as he was God he also became man, and so was subject to God according to the law that is suitable to the nature of manhood. But how should he become God or Lord of himself? Consequently as man and as far as it was fitting for him within the limits of his self-emptying it is said that he was subject to God like ourselves. So he came to be under the law while at the same time himself speaking the law and being a lawgiver like God. ἔφη μὲν γὰρ θεὸν ἑαυτοῦ τὸν πατέρα, καίτοι θεὸς ὢν φύσει καὶ ἐκ τῆς οὐσίας αὐτοῦ· ἀλλ' οὐκ ἠγνοήκαμεν ὅτι μετὰ τοῦ εἶναι θεὸς καὶ ἄνθρωπος γέγονεν ὑπὸ θεῶι κατά γε τὸν πρέποντα νόμον τῆι τῆς ἀνθρωπότητος φύσει. αὐτὸς δὲ ἑαυτοῦ πῶς ἂν γένοιτο θεὸς ἢ δεσπότης; οὐκοῦν ὡς ἄνθρωπος καὶ ὅσον ἧκεν εἴς γε τὸ πρέπον τοῖς τῆς κενώσεως μέτροις, ὑπὸ θεῶι μεθ' ἡμῶν ἑαυτὸν εἶναί φησιν. οὕτω γέγονε καὶ ὑπὸ νόμον, καίτοι λαλήσας αὐτὸς τὸν νόμον καὶ νομοθέτης ὑπάρχων ὡς θεός.

When speaking of Christ we avoid the expression: “I worship him who is carried because of the one who carries him; because of him who is unseen, I worship the one who is seen.” It is shocking to say in this connexion: “The assumed shares the name of God with him who assumes.” To speak in this way once again divides into two Christs and puts the man separately by himself and God likewise by himself. This saying denies openly the union, according to which one is not worshipped alongside the other, nor do both share in the title “God”, but Jesus Christ is considered as one, the only begotten Son, honoured with one worship, together with his own flesh.

παραιτούμεθα δὲ λέγειν ἐπὶ Χριστοῦ "διὰ τὸν φοροῦντα τὸν φορούμενον σέβω· διὰ τὸν ἀόρατον προσκυνῶ τὸν ὁρώμενον". φρικτὸν δὲ πρὸς τούτωι κἀκεῖνο εἰπεῖν "ὁ ληφθεὶς τῶι λαβόντι συγχρηματίζει θεός". ὁ γὰρ ταῦτα λέγων διατέμνει πάλιν εἰς δύο  Χριστοὺς καὶ ἄνθρωπον ἵστησιν ἀνὰ μέρος ἰδικῶς καὶ θεὸν ὁμοίως. ἀρνεῖται γὰρ ὁμολογουμένως τὴν ἕνωσιν, καθ' ἣν οὐχ ὡς ἕτερος ἑτέρωι συμπροσκυνεῖταί τις οὔτε μὴν συγχρηματίζει θεός, ἀλλ' εἷς νοεῖται Χριστὸς Ἰησοῦς υἱὸς μονογενής, μιᾶι προσκυνήσει τιμώμενος μετὰ τῆς ἰδίας σαρκός.

We also confess that the only begotten Son born of God the Father, although according to his own nature he was not subject to suffering, suffered in the flesh for us according to the scriptures, and was in his crucified body, and without himself suffering made his own the sufferings of his own flesh, for “by the grace of God he tasted death for all”. For that purpose he gave his own body to death though he was by nature life and the resurrection, in order that, having trodden down death by his own unspeakable power, he might first in his own flesh become the firstborn from the dead and “the first fruits of them that sleep”. And that he might make a way for human nature to return to incorruption by the grace of God, as we have just said, “he tasted death for all” and on the third day he returned to life, having robbed the underworld. Accordingly, even though it is said that “through man came the resurrection of the dead”, yet we understand that man to have been the Word which came from God, through whom the power of death was overcome. At the right time he will come as one Son and Lord in the glory of the Father, to judge the world in justice, as it is written.

ὁμολογοῦμεν δὲ ὅτι αὐτὸς ὁ ἐκ θεοῦ πατρὸς γεννηθεὶς υἱὸς καὶ θεὸς μονογενής, καίτοι κατὰ φύσιν ἰδίαν ὑπάρχων ἀπαθής, σαρκὶ πέπονθεν ὑπὲρ ἡμῶν κατὰ τὰς γραφὰς καὶ ἦν ἐν τῶι σταυρωθέντι σώματι, τὰ τῆς ἰδίας σαρκὸς ἀπαθῶς οἰκειούμενος πάθη. <χάριτι δὲ θεοῦ> καὶ <ὑπὲρ παντὸς ἐγεύσατο θανάτου,> διδοὺς αὐτῶι τὸ ἴδιον σῶμα, καίτοι κατὰ φύσιν ὑπάρχων ζωὴ καὶ αὐτὸς ὢν ἡ ἀνάστασις. ἵνα γὰρ ἀρρήτωι δυνάμει πατήσας τὸν θάνατον ὡς ἔν γε δὴ πρώτηι τῆι ἰδίαι σαρκὶ γένηται <πρωτότοκος ἐκ νεκρῶν> καὶ <ἀπαρχὴ τῶν κεκοιμημένων> ὁδοποιήσηι τε τῆι ἀνθρώπου φύσει τὴν εἰς ἀφθαρσίαν ἀναδρομήν, <χάριτι θεοῦ,> καθάπερ ἔφημεν ἀρτίως, <ὑπὲρ παντὸς ἐγεύσατο θανάτου> τριήμερός τε ἀνεβίω σκυλεύσας τὸν ἅιδην. ὥστε κἂν λέγηται <δι' ἀνθρώπου> γενέσθαι ἡ ἀνάστασις τῶν νεκρῶν, ἀλλὰ νοοῦμεν ἄνθρωπον τὸν ἐκ θεοῦ γεγονότα λόγον καὶ λελύσθαι δι' αὐτοῦ τοῦ θανάτου τὸ κράτος. ἥξει δὲ κατὰ καιροὺς ὡς εἷς υἱὸς καὶ κύριος ἐν τῆι δόξηι τοῦ πατρός, ἵνα κρίνηι <τὴν οἰκουμένην ἐν δικαιοσύνηι,> καθὰ γέγραπται.

We will necessarily add this also. Proclaiming the death according to the flesh of the only begotten Son of God, that is Jesus Christ, and professing his return to life from the dead and his ascension into heaven, we offer the unbloody worship [sacrificii servitutem] in the churches and so proceed to the mystical thanksgivings and are sanctified having partaken of the holy flesh [corpus] and precious blood of Christ, the saviour of us all. This we receive not as ordinary flesh, heaven forbid, nor as that of a man who has been made holy and joined to the Word by union of honour, or who had a divine indwelling, but as truly the life-giving and real flesh of the Word [ut vere vivificatricem et ipsius Verbi propriam factam.]. For being life by nature as God, when he became one with his own flesh, he made it also to be life-giving, as also he said to us: “Amen I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of man and drink his blood” . For we must not think that it is the flesh of a man like us (for how can the flesh of man be life-giving by its own nature?), but as being made the true flesh [vere proprium eius factam] of the one who for our sake became the son of man and was called so.

̓Αναγκαίως δὲ κἀκεῖνο προσθήσομεν. καταγγέλλοντες γὰρ τὸν κατὰ σάρκα θάνατον τοῦ μονογενοῦς υἱοῦ τοῦ θεοῦ, τουτέστιν Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ τήν τε ἐκ νεκρῶν ἀναβίωσιν καὶ τὴν εἰς οὐρανοὺς ἀνάληψιν ὁμολογοῦντες, τὴν ἀναίμακτον ἐν ταῖς ἐκκλησίαις τελοῦμεν λατρείαν πρόσιμέν τε οὕτω ταῖς μυστικαῖς εὐλογίαις καὶ ἁγιαζόμεθα μέτοχοι γινόμενοι τῆς τε ἁγίας σαρκὸς καὶ τοῦ τιμίου αἵματος τοῦ πάντων ἡμῶν σωτῆρος Χριστοῦ καὶ οὐχ ὡς σάρκα κοινὴν δεχόμενοι, μὴ γένοιτο, οὔτε μὴν ὡς ἀνδρὸς ἡγιασμένου καὶ συναφθέντος τῶι λόγωι κατὰ τὴν ἑνότητα τῆς ἀξίας ἢ γοῦν ὡς θείαν ἐνοίκησιν ἐσχηκότος, ἀλλ' ὡς ζωοποιὸν ἀληθῶς καὶ ἰδίαν αὐτοῦ τοῦ λόγου. ζωὴ γὰρ ὢν κατὰ φύσιν ὡς θεός, ἐπειδὴ γέγονεν ἓν πρὸς τὴν ἑαυτοῦ σάρκα, ζωοποιὸν ἀπέφηνεν αὐτήν, ὥστε κἂν λέγηι πρὸς ἡμᾶς <ἀμὴν λέγω ὑμῖν, ἐὰν μὴ φάγητε τὴν σάρκα τοῦ υἱοῦ τοῦ ἀνθρώπου καὶ    1,1,1.38 πίητε αὐτοῦ τὸ αἷμα,> οὐχ ὡς ἀνθρώπου τῶν καθ' ἡμᾶς ἑνὸς καὶ αὐτὴν εἶναι λογιούμεθα žπῶς γὰρ ἡ ἀνθρώπου σὰρξ ζωοποιὸς ἔσται κατὰ φύσιν τὴν ἑαυτῆς;Ÿ, ἀλλ' ὡς ἰδίαν ἀληθῶς γενομένην τοῦ δι' ἡμᾶς καὶ υἱοῦ ἀνθρώπου γεγονότος τε καὶ χρηματίσαντος.

For we do not divide up the words of our Saviour in the gospels among two hypostases or persons [prosopa]. For the one and only Christ is not dual, even though he be considered to be from two distinct realities, brought together into an unbreakable union. In the same sort of way a human being, though he be composed of soul and body, is considered to be not dual, but rather one out of two. Therefore, in thinking rightly, we refer both the human and divine expressions to the same person. For when he speaks about himself in a divine manner as “he that sees me sees the Father”, and “I and the Father are one”, we think of his divine and unspeakable nature, according to which he is one with his own Father through identity of nature and is the “image and impress and brightness of his glory”. But when, not dishonoring the measure of his humanity, he says to the Jews: “But now you seek to kill me, a man who has spoken the truth to you”, again no less than before, we recognise that he who, because of his equality and likeness to God the Father is God the Word, is also within the limits of his humanity. For if it is necessary to believe that being God by nature he became flesh, that is man ensouled with a rational soul, whatever reason should anyone have for being ashamed at the expressions uttered by him should they happen to be suitable to him as man ? For if he should reject words suitable to him as man, who was it that forced him to become a man like us? Why should he who submitted himself to voluntary self-emptying for our sake, reject expressions that are suitable for such self-emptying? All the expressions, therefore, that occur in the gospels are to be referred to one person, the one enfleshed hypostasis of the Word. For there is one Lord Jesus Christ, according to the scriptures.

Τὰς δέ γε ἐν τοῖς εὐαγγελίοις τοῦ σωτῆρος ἡμῶν φωνὰς οὔτε ὑποστάσεσι δυσὶν οὔτε μὴν προσώποις καταμερίζομεν. οὐ γάρ ἐστι διπλοῦς ὁ εἷς καὶ μόνος Χριστός, κἂν ἐκ δύο νοῆται καὶ διαφόρων πραγμάτων εἰς ἑνότητα τὴν ἀμέριστον συνενηνεγμένος, καθάπερ ἀμέλει καὶ ἄνθρωπος ἐκ ψυχῆς νοεῖται καὶ σώματος καὶ οὐ διπλοῦς μᾶλλον, ἀλλ' εἷς ἐξ ἀμφοῖν. ἀλλὰ τάς τε ἀνθρωπίνας καὶ πρός γε τούτωι τὰς θεικὰς παρ' ἑνὸς εἰρῆσθαι διακεισόμεθα, φρονοῦντες ὀρθῶς. ὅταν μὲν γὰρ θεοπρεπῶς λέγηι περὶ ἑαυτοῦ ὁ <ἑωρακὼς ἐμὲ ἑώρακε τὸν πατέρα> καὶ <ἐγὼ καὶ ὁ πατὴρ ἓν ἐσμέν,> τὴν θείαν αὐτοῦ καὶ ἀπόρρητον ἐννοοῦμεν φύσιν, καθ' ἣν καὶ ἕν ἐστιν πρὸς τὸν ἑαυτοῦ πατέρα διὰ τὴν ταυτότητα τῆς οὐσίας εἰκών τε καὶ χαρακτὴρ καὶ ἀπαύγασμα τῆς δόξης αὐτοῦ· ὅταν δὲ τὸ τῆς ἀνθρωπότητος μέτρον οὐκ ἀτιμάζων τοῖς Ἰουδαίοις προσλαλῆι <νῦν δέ με ζητεῖτε ἀποκτεῖναι, ἄνθρωπον ὃς τὴν ἀλήθειαν ὑμῖν λελάληκα,> πάλιν οὐδὲν ἧττον αὐτὸν τὸν ἐν ἰσότητί τε καὶ ὁμοιότητι τοῦ πατρὸς θεὸν λόγον καὶ ἐκ τῶν τῆς ἀνθρωπότητος αὐτοῦ μέτρων ἐπιγινώσκομεν. εἰ γάρ ἐστιν ἀναγκαῖον τὸ πιστεύειν ὅτι θεὸς ὢν φύσει γέγονε σὰρξ ἢ γοῦν ἄνθρωπος ἐψυχωμένος ψυχῆι λογικῆι, ποῖον ἂν ἔχοι λόγον τὸ ἐπαισχύνεσθαί τινα ταῖς παρ' αὐτοῦ φωναῖς, εἰ γεγόνασιν ἀνθρωποπρεπῶς; εἰ γὰρ παραιτοῖτο τοὺς ἀνθρώπωι πρέποντας λόγους, τίς ὁ ἀναγκάσας γενέσθαι καθ' ἡμᾶς ἄνθρωπον; ὁ δὲ καθεὶς ἑαυτὸν δι' ἡμᾶς εἰς ἑκούσιον κένωσιν διὰ ποίαν αἰτίαν παραιτοῖτο ἂν τοὺς τῆι κενώσει πρέποντας λόγους; ἑνὶ τοιγαροῦν προσώπωι τὰς ἐν τοῖς εὐαγγελίοις πάσας ἀναθετέον φωνάς, ὑποστάσει μιᾶι τῆι τοῦ λόγου σεσαρκωμένηι. κύριος γὰρ εἷς Ἰησοῦς Χριστὸς κατὰ τὰς γραφάς.

Even though he is called “the apostle and high priest of our confession”, as offering to the God and Father the confession of faith we make to him and through him to the God and Father and also to the holy Spirit, again we say that he is the natural and only-begotten Son of God and we shall not assign to another man apart from him the name and reality of priesthood. For he became the “mediator between God and humanity” and the establisher of peace between them, offering himself for an odor of sweetness to the God and Father. Therefore also he said: “Sacrifice and offering you would not, but a body you have prepared for me; [in burnt offerings and sacrifice for sin you have no pleasure]. Then I said, ‘Behold I come to do your will, O God’, as it is written of me in the volume of the book”. For our sake and not for his own he brought forward his own body in the odor of sweetness. Indeed, of what offering or sacrifice for himself would he have been in need, being as God superior to all manner of sin? For though “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God”, and so we are prone to disorder and human nature has fallen into the weakness of sin, he is not so and consequently we are behind him in glory. How then can there be any further doubt that the true lamb was sacrificed for us and on our behalf? The suggestion that he offered himself for himself as well as for us is impossible to separate from the charge of impiety. For he never committed a fault at all, nor did he sin in any way. What sort of offering would he need then since there was no sin for which offering might rightly be made?

εἰ δὲ δὴ καλοῖτο καὶ ἀπόστολος καὶ ἀρχιερεὺς τῆς ὁμολογίας ἡμῶν, ὡς ἱερουργῶν τῶι θεῶι καὶ πατρὶ τὴν πρὸς ἡμῶν αὐτῶι τε καὶ δι' αὐτοῦ τῶι θεῶι καὶ πατρὶ προσκομιζομένην τῆς πίστεως ὁμολογίαν καὶ μὴν καὶ εἰς τὸ ἅγιον πνεῦμα, πάλιν αὐτὸν εἶναι φαμὲν τὸν ἐκ θεοῦ κατὰ φύσιν υἱὸν μονογενῆ καὶ οὐκ ἀνθρώπωι προσνεμοῦμεν παρ' αὐτὸν ἑτέρωι τό τε τῆς ἱερωσύνης ὄνομα καὶ αὐτὸ δὲ τὸ χρῆμα.    1,1,1.39 γέγονε γὰρ μεσίτης θεοῦ καὶ ἀνθρώπων καὶ διαλλακτὴς εἰς εἰρήνην, ἑαυτὸν ἀναθεὶς εἰς ὀσμὴν εὐωδίας τῶι θεῶι καὶ πατρί. τοιγάρτοι καὶ ἔφασκεν <θυσίαν καὶ προσφορὰν οὐκ ἠθέλησας, σῶμα δὲ κατηρτίσω μοι. [ὁλοκαυτώματα καὶ περὶ ἁμαρτίας οὐκ εὐδόκησας.] τότε εἶπον· ἰδοὺ ἥκω· ἐν κεφαλίδι βιβλίου γέγραπται περὶ ἐμοῦ τοῦ ποιῆσαι, ὁ θεός, τὸ θέλημά σου.> προσκεκόμικε γὰρ ὑπὲρ ἡμῶν εἰς ὀσμὴν εὐωδίας τὸ ἴδιον σῶμα καὶ οὐχ ὑπέρ γε μᾶλλον ἑαυτοῦ. ποίας γὰρ ἂν ἐδεήθη προσφορᾶς ἢ θυσίας ὑπὲρ ἑαυτοῦ, κρείττων ἁπάσης ὑπάρχων ἁμαρτίας ὡς θεός; εἰ γὰρ <πάντες ἥμαρτον καὶ ὑστεροῦνται τῆς δόξης τοῦ θεοῦ,> καθὸ γεγόναμεν ἡμεῖς ἕτοιμοι πρὸς παραφορὰν καὶ κατηρρώστησεν ἡ ἀνθρώπου φύσις τὴν ἁμαρτίαν, αὐτὸς δὲ οὐχ οὕτως καὶ ἡττώμεθα διὰ τοῦτο τῆς δόξης αὐτοῦ, πῶς ἂν εἴη λοιπὸν ἀμφίβολον ὅτι τέθυται δι' ἡμᾶς καὶ ὑπὲρ ἡμῶν ὁ ἀμνὸς ὁ ἀληθινός; καὶ τὸ λέγειν ὅτι προσκεκόμικεν ἑαυτὸν ὑπέρ τε ἑαυτοῦ καὶ ἡμῶν, ἀμοιρήσειεν ἂν οὐδαμῶς τῶν εἰς δυσσέβειαν ἐγκλημάτων. πεπλημμέληκε γὰρ κατ' οὐδένα τρόπον οὔτε μὴν ἐποίησεν ἁμαρτίαν· ποίας οὖν ἐδεήθη προσφορᾶς, ἁμαρτίας οὐκ οὔσης ἐφ' ἧιπερ ἂν γένοιτο καὶ μάλα εἰκότως;

When he says of the Spirit, “he will glorify me”, the correct understanding of this is not to say that the one Christ and Son was in need of glory from another and that he took glory from the holy Spirit, for his Spirit is not better than he nor above him. But because he used his own Spirit to display his godhead through his mighty works, he says that he has been glorified by him, just as if any one of us should perhaps say for example of his inherent strength or his knowledge of anything that they glorify him. For even though the Spirit exists in his own hypostasis and is thought of on his own, as being Spirit and not as Son, even so he is not alien to the Son. He has been called “the Spirit of truth”, and Christ is the truth, and the Spirit was poured forth by the Son, as indeed the Son was poured forth from the God and Father. Accordingly the Spirit worked many strange things through the hand of the holy apostles and so glorified him after the ascension of our lord Jesus Christ into heaven. For it was believed that he is God by nature and works through his own Spirit. For this reason also he said: “He (the Spirit) will take what is mine and declare it to you”. But we do not say that the Spirit is wise and powerful through some sharing with another, for he is all perfect and in need of no good thing. Since he is the Spirit of the power and wisdom of the Father, that is the Son, he is himself, evidently, wisdom and power.

ὅταν δὲ λέγηι περὶ τοῦ πνεύματος <ἐκεῖνος ἐμὲ δοξάσει,> νοοῦντες ὀρθῶς οὐχ ὡς δόξης ἐπιδεᾶ τῆς παρ' ἑτέρου φαμὲν τὸν ἕνα Χριστὸν καὶ υἱὸν τὴν παρὰ τοῦ ἁγίου πνεύματος δόξαν ἑλεῖν, ὅτι μηδὲ κρεῖττον αὐτοῦ καὶ ὑπὲρ αὐτὸν τὸ πνεῦμα αὐτοῦ. ἐπειδὴ δὲ εἰς ἔνδειξιν τῆς ἑαυτοῦ θεότητος ἐχρῆτο τῶι ἰδίωι πνεύματι πρὸς μεγαλουργίας, δεδοξάσθαι παρ' αὐτοῦ φησιν, ὥσπερ ἂν εἰ καί τις λέγοι τῶν καθ' ἡμᾶς περὶ τῆς ἐνούσης ἰσχύος αὐτῶι τυχὸν ἢ γοῦν ἐπιστήμης τῆς ἐφ' ὁτωιοῦν ὅτι δοξάσουσί με. εἰ γὰρ καὶ ἔστιν ἐν ὑποστάσει τὸ πνεῦμα ἰδικῆι καὶ δὴ καὶ νοεῖται καθ' ἑαυτό, καθὸ πνεῦμά ἐστιν καὶ οὐχ υἱός, ἀλλ' οὖν ἐστιν οὐκ ἀλλότριον αὐτοῦ. <πνεῦμα> γὰρ <ἀληθείας> ὠνόμασται καὶ ἔστιν Χριστὸς ἡ ἀλήθεια καὶ προχεῖται παρ' αὐτοῦ καθάπερ ἀμέλει καὶ ἐκ τοῦ θεοῦ καὶ πατρός. ἐνεργῆσαν τοιγαροῦν τὸ πνεῦμα καὶ διὰ χειρὸς τῶν ἁγίων ἀποστόλων τὰ παράδοξα μετὰ τὸ ἀνελθεῖν τὸν κύριον ἡμῶν Ἰησοῦν Χριστὸν εἰς τὸν οὐρανὸν ἐδόξασεν αὐτόν. ἐπιστεύθη γὰρ ὅτι θεὸς κατὰ φύσιν ἐστίν, πάλιν αὐτὸς ἐνεργῶν διὰ τοῦ ἰδίου πνεύματος. διὰ τοῦτο καὶ ἔφασκεν ὅτι ἐκ <τοῦ ἐμοῦ λήψεται καὶ ἀπαγγελεῖ ὑμῖν.> καὶ οὔτι που φαμὲν ὡς ἐκ μετοχῆς τὸ πνεῦμά ἐστιν σοφόν τε καὶ δυνατόν. παντέλειον γὰρ καὶ ἀπροσδεές ἐστιν παντὸς ἀγαθοῦ. 1,1,1.40 ἐπειδὴ δὲ τῆς τοῦ πατρὸς δυνάμεως καὶ σοφίας, τουτέστιν τοῦ υἱοῦ, πνεῦμά ἐστιν, αὐτόχρημα σοφία ἐστὶ καὶ δύναμις.

Therefore, because the holy virgin bore in the flesh God who was united hypostatically with the flesh, for that reason we call her mother of God, not as though the nature of the Word had the beginning of its existence from the flesh (for “the Word was in the beginning and the Word was God and the Word was with God”, and he made the ages and is coeternal with the Father and craftsman of all things), but because, as we have said, he united to himself hypostatically the human and underwent a birth according to the flesh from her womb. This was not as though he needed necessarily or for his own nature a birth in time and in the last times of this age, but in order that he might bless the beginning of our existence, in order that seeing that it was a woman that had given birth to him united to the flesh, the curse against the whole race should thereafter cease which was consigning all our earthy bodies to death, and in order that the removal through him of the curse, “In sorrow thou shalt bring forth children”, should demonstrate the truth of the words of the prophet: “Strong death swallowed them Up”, and again, “God has wiped every tear away from all face”. It is for this cause that we say that in his economy he blessed marriage and, when invited, went down to Cana in Galilee with his holy apostles.

̓Επειδὴ δὲ θεὸν ἑνωθέντα σαρκὶ καθ' ὑπόστασιν ἡ ἁγία παρθένος ἐκτέτοκε σαρκικῶς, ταύτηι τοι καὶ θεοτόκον εἶναι φαμὲν αὐτήν, οὐχ ὡς τῆς τοῦ λόγου φύσεως τῆς ὑπάρξεως τὴν ἀρχὴν ἐχούσης ἀπὸ σαρκός žἦν γὰρ ἐν <ἀρχῆι καὶ θεὸς ἦν ὁ λόγος καὶ ὁ λόγος ἦν πρὸς τὸν θεὸν> καὶ αὐτός ἐστι τῶν αἰώνων ὁ ποιητής, συναίδιος τῶι πατρὶ καὶ τῶν ὅλων δημιουργόςŸ, ἀλλ' ὡς ἤδη προείπομεν, ἐπειδὴ καθ' ὑπόστασιν ἑνώσας ἑαυτῶι τὸ ἀνθρώπινον καὶ ἐκ μήτρας αὐτῆς γέννησιν ὑπέμεινε σαρκικήν, οὐχ ὡς δεηθεὶς ἀναγκαίως ἤτοι διὰ τὴν ἰδίαν φύσιν καὶ τῆς ἐν χρόνωι καὶ ἐν ἐσχάτοις τοῦ αἰῶνος καιροῖς γεννήσεως, ἀλλ' ἵνα καὶ αὐτὴν τῆς ὑπάρξεως ἡμῶν εὐλογήσηι τὴν ἀρχὴν καὶ τεκούσης γυναικὸς αὐτὸν ἑνωθέντα σαρκὶ παύσηται λοιπὸν ἡ κατὰ παντὸς τοῦ γένους ἀρὰ πέμπουσα πρὸς θάνατον τὰ ἐκ γῆς ἡμῶν σώματα καὶ τὸ <ἐν λύπαις τέξηι τέκνα> δι' αὐτοῦ καταργούμενον ἀληθὲς ἀποφήνηι τὸ διὰ τῆς τοῦ προφήτου φωνῆς <κατέπιεν ὁ θάνατος ἰσχύσας καὶ πάλιν ἀφεῖλεν ὁ θεὸς πᾶν δάκρυον ἀπὸ παντὸς προσώπου.> ταύτης γὰρ ἕνεκα τῆς αἰτίας φαμὲν αὐτὸν οἰκονομικῶς καὶ αὐτὸν εὐλογῆσαι τὸν γάμον καὶ ἀπελθεῖν κεκλημένον ἐν Κανᾶ τῆς Γαλιλαίας ὁμοῦ τοῖς ἁγίοις ἀποστόλοις.

We have been taught to hold these things by

Ταῦτα φρονεῖν δεδιδάγμεθα παρά τε

·  the holy apostles and evangelists

·  τῶν ἁγίων ἀποστόλων καὶ εὐαγγελιστῶν,

·  and by all the divinely inspired scriptures

·  καὶ πάσης δὲ τῆς θεοπνεύστου γραφῆς

·  and by the true confession of the blessed fathers.

·  καὶ ἐκ τῆς τῶν μακαρίων πατέρων ἀληθοῦς ὁμολογίας·

To all these your reverence ought to agree and subscribe without any deceit. What is required for your reverence to anathematise we subjoin to this epistle.

τούτοις ἅπασιν καὶ τὴν σὴν εὐλάβειαν συναινέσαι χρὴ καὶ συνθέσθαι δίχα δόλου παντός. ἃ δέ ἐστιν ἀναγκαῖον ἀναθεματίσαι τὴν σὴν εὐλάβειαν, ὑποτέτακται τῆιδε ἡμῶν τῆι ἐπιστολῆι.


Cyril's 12 Anathemas

 

TWELVE ANATHEMAS PROPOSED by CYRIL
and
ACCEPTED by the COUNCIL of EPHESUS

 

 


1. If anyone does not confess that Emmanuel is God in truth, and therefore that the holy virgin is the God-Bearer (for she bore in a fleshly way the Word of God become flesh, let him be anathema.

ˉα Εἴ τις οὐχ ὁμολογεῖ θεὸν εἶναι κατὰ ἀλήθειαν τὸν Ἐμμανουὴλ καὶ διὰ τοῦτο θεοτόκον τὴν ἁγίαν παρθένον (γεγέννηκε γὰρ σαρκικῶς σάρκα γεγονότα τὸν ἐκ θεοῦ λόγον), ἀνάθεμα ἔστω.

2. If anyone does not confess that the Word from God the Father has been united by hypostasis with the flesh and is one Christ with his own flesh, and is therefore God and man together, let him be anathema.

ˉβ Εἴ τις οὐχ ὁμολογεῖ σαρκὶ καθ' ὑπόστασιν ἡνῶσθαι τὸν ἐκ θεοῦ πατρὸς λόγον ἕνα τε εἶναι Χριστὸν μετὰ τῆς ἰδίας σαρκός, τὸν αὐτὸν δηλονότι θεόν τε ὁμοῦ καὶ ἄνθρωπον, ἀνάθεμα ἔστω.

3. If anyone divides in the one Christ the hypostases after the union, joining them only by a conjunction of dignity or authority or power, and not rather by a coming together in a union by nature, let him be anathema.

ˉγ Εἴ τις ἐπὶ τοῦ ἑνὸς Χριστοῦ διαιρεῖ τὰς ὑποστάσεις μετὰ τὴν ἕνωσιν, μόνηι συνάπτων αὐτὰς συναφείαι τῆι κατὰ τὴν ἀξίαν ἢ γοῦν αὐθεντίαν ἢ δυναστείαν καὶ οὐχὶ δὴ μᾶλλον συνόδωι τῆι καθ' ἕνωσιν φυσικήν, ἀνάθεμα ἔστω. 

4. If anyone distributes between the two persons or hypostases the expressions used either in the gospels or in the apostolic writings, whether they are used by the holy writers of Christ or by him about himself, and ascribes some to him as to a man, thought of separately from the Word from God, and others, as befitting God, to him as to the Word from God the Father, let him be anathema.

ˉδ Εἴ τις προσώποις δυσὶν ἢ γοῦν ὑποστάσεσιν τάς τε ἐν τοῖς εὐαγγελικοῖς καὶ ἀποστολικοῖς συγγράμμασι διανέμει φωνὰς ἢ ἐπὶ Χριστῶι παρὰ τῶν ἁγίων λεγομένας ἢ παρ' αὐτοῦ περὶ ἑαυτοῦ καὶ τὰς μὲν ὡς ἀνθρώπωι παρὰ τὸν ἐκ θεοῦ λόγον ἰδικῶς νοουμένωι προσάπτει, τὰς δὲ ὡς θεοπρεπεῖς μόνωι τῶι ἐκ θεοῦ πατρὸς λόγωι, ἀνάθεμα ἔστω.

5. If anyone dares to say that Christ was a God-bearing man and not rather God in truth, being by nature one Son, even as “the Word became flesh”, and is made partaker of blood and flesh precisely like us, let him be anathema.

ˉε Εἴ τις τολμᾶι λέγειν θεοφόρον ἄνθρωπον τὸν Χριστὸν καὶ οὐχὶ δὴ μᾶλλον θεὸν εἶναι κατὰ ἀλήθειαν ὡς υἱὸν ἕνα καὶ φύσει, καθὸ γέγονε σὰρξ ὁ λόγος καὶ κεκοινώνηκε παραπλησίως ἡμῖν αἵματος καὶ σαρκός, ἀνάθεμα ἔστω.

6. If anyone says that the Word from God the Father was the God or master of Christ, and does not rather confess the same both God and man, the Word having become flesh, according to the scriptures, let him be anathema.

ˉϛ Εἴ τις λέγει θεὸν ἢ δεσπότην εἶναι τοῦ Χριστοῦ τὸν ἐκ θεοῦ πατρὸς λόγον καὶ οὐχὶ δὴ μᾶλλον τὸν αὐτὸν ὁμολογεῖ θεόν τε ὁμοῦ καὶ ἄνθρωπον, ὡς γεγονότος σαρκὸς τοῦ λόγου κατὰ τὰς γραφάς, ἀνάθεμα ἔστω.

7. If anyone says that as man Jesus was activated by the Word of God and was clothed with the glory of the Only-begotten, as a being separate from him, let him be anathema.

ˉζ Εἴ τίς φησιν ὡς ἄνθρωπον ἐνηργῆσθαι παρὰ τοῦ θεοῦ λόγου τὸν Ἰησοῦν καὶ τὴν τοῦ μονογενοῦς εὐδοξίαν περιῆφθαι ὡς ἑτέρωι παρ' αὐτὸν ὑπάρχοντι, ἀνάθεμα ἔστω.

8. If anyone dares to say that the man who was assumed ought to be worshipped and glorified together with the divine Word and be called God along with him, while being separate from him, (for the addition of “with” must always compel us to think in this way), and will not rather worship Emmanuel with one veneration and send up to him one doxology, even as “the Word became flesh”, let him be anathema.

ˉη Εἴ τις τολμᾶι λέγειν τὸν ἀναληφθέντα ἄνθρωπον συμπροσκυνεῖσθαι δεῖν τῶι θεῶι λόγωι καὶ συνδοξάζεσθαι καὶ συγχρηματίζειν θεὸν ὡς ἕτερον ἑτέρωι žτὸ γὰρ ˉσˉυˉν ἀεὶ προστιθέμενον τοῦτο νοεῖν ἀναγκάσειŸ καὶ οὐχὶ δὴ μᾶλλον μιᾶι προσκυνήσει τιμᾶι τὸν Ἐμμανουὴλ καὶ μίαν αὐτῶι τὴν δοξολογίαν ἀνάπτει, καθὸ γέγονε σὰρξ ὁ λόγος, ἀνάθεμα ἔστω.

9. If anyone says that the one Lord Jesus Christ was glorified by the Spirit, as making use of an alien power that worked through him and as having received from him the power to master unclean spirits and to work divine wonders among people, and does not rather say that it was his own proper Spirit through whom he worked the divine wonders, let him be anathema.

ˉθ Εἴ τίς φησιν τὸν ἕνα κύριον Ἰησοῦν Χριστὸν δεδοξάσθαι παρὰ τοῦ πνεύματος, ὡς ἀλλοτρίαι δυνάμει τῆι δι' αὐτοῦ χρώμενον καὶ παρ' αὐτοῦ λαβόντα τὸ ἐνεργεῖν δύνασθαι κατὰ πνευμάτων ἀκαθάρτων καὶ τὸ πληροῦν εἰς ἀνθρώπους τὰς θεοσημείας, καὶ οὐχὶ δὴ μᾶλλον ἴδιον αὐτοῦ τὸ πνεῦμά φησιν, δι' οὗ καὶ ἐνήργηκε τὰς θεοσημείας, ἀνάθεμα ἔστω.

10. The divine scripture says Christ became “the high priest and apostle of our confession”; he offered himself to God the Father in an odor of sweetness for our sake. If anyone, therefore, says that it was not the very Word from God who became our high priest and apostle, when he became flesh and a man like us, but as it were another who was separate from him, in particular a man from a woman, or if anyone says that he offered the sacrifice also for himself and not rather for us alone (for he who knew no sin needed no offering), let him be anathema.

ˉι Ἀρχιερέα καὶ ἀπόστολον τῆς ὁμολογίας ἡμῶν γεγενῆσθαι Χριστὸν ἡ θεία λέγει γραφή, προσκεκόμικε δὲ ὑπὲρ ἡμῶν ἑαυτὸν εἰς ὀσμὴν εὐωδίας τῶι θεῶι καὶ πατρί. εἴ τις τοίνυν ἀρχιερέα καὶ ἀπόστολον ἡμῶν γεγενῆσθαί φησιν οὐκ αὐτὸν τὸν ἐκ θεοῦ λόγον, ὅτε γέγονε σὰρξ καὶ καθ' ἡμᾶς ἄνθρωπος, ἀλλ' ὡς ἕτερον παρ' αὐτὸν ἰδικῶς ἄνθρωπον ἐκ γυναικός, ἢ εἴ τις λέγει καὶ ὑπὲρ ἑαυτοῦ προσενεγκεῖν αὐτὸν τὴν προσφορὰν καὶ οὐχὶ δὴ μᾶλλον ὑπὲρ μόνων ἡμῶν žοὐ γὰρ ἂν ἐδεήθη προσφορᾶς ὁ μὴ εἰδὼς ἁμαρτίανŸ, ἀνάθεμα ἔστω.

11. If anyone does not confess that the flesh of the Lord is life-giving and belongs to the Word from God the Father, but maintains that it belongs to another besides him, united with him in dignity or as enjoying a mere divine indwelling, and is not rather life-giving, as we said, since it became the flesh belonging to the Word who has power to bring all things to life, let him be anathema.

ˉιˉα Εἴ τις οὐχ ὁμολογεῖ τὴν τοῦ κυρίου σάρκα ζωοποιὸν εἶναι καὶ ἰδίαν αὐτοῦ τοῦ ἐκ θεοῦ πατρὸς λόγου, ἀλλ' ὡς ἑτέρου τινὸς παρ' αὐτὸν συνημμένου μὲν αὐτῶι κατὰ τὴν    1,1,1.42 ἀξίαν ἢ γοῦν ὡς μόνην θείαν ἐνοίκησιν ἐσχηκότος, καὶ οὐχὶ δὴ μᾶλλον ζωοποιόν, ὡς ἔφημεν, ὅτι γέγονεν ἰδία τοῦ λόγου τοῦ τὰ πάντα ζωογονεῖν ἰσχύοντος, ἀνάθεμα ἔστω.

12. If anyone does not confess that the Word of God suffered in the flesh and was crucified in the flesh and tasted death in the flesh and became the first born of the dead, although as God he is life and life-giving, let him be anathema.

ˉιˉβ Εἴ τις οὐχ ὁμολογεῖ τὸν τοῦ θεοῦ λόγον παθόντα σαρκὶ καὶ ἐσταυρωμένον σαρκὶ καὶ θανάτου γευσάμενον σαρκὶ γεγονότα τε πρωτότοκον ἐκ τῶν νεκρῶν, καθὸ ζωή τέ ἐστι καὶ ζωοποιὸς ὡς θεός, ἀνάθεμα ἔστω.

 


Formula of Union

 

FORMULA of UNION [between Cyrill and John of Antioch]
Γράμματα περὶ τῆς εἰρήνης

 

 

CONCERNING the God-bearing virgin and

Περὶ δὲ τῆς θεοτόκου

the manner of the incarnation of the only begotten Son of God We will state briefly what we are convinced of and profess:

παρθένου ὅπως καὶ φρονοῦμεν καὶ λέγομεν͵τοῦ τε τρόπου τῆς ἐνανθρωπήσεως τοῦ μονογενοῦς υἱοῦ τοῦ θεοῦ ἀναγκαίως͵

not by way of addition

οὐκ ἐν προσθήκης μέρει͵

but in the manner of a full statement, even as we have received and possess it from of old from ἀλλ΄ ἐν πληροφορίας εἴδει͵ ὡς ἄνωθεν ἔκ τε

the holy scriptures and from

τῶν θείων γραφῶν

the tradition of the holy fathers,

ἔκ τε τῆς παραδόσεως τῶν ἁγίων πατέρων παρειληφότες ἐσχήκαμεν͵

adding nothing at all to the creed put forward by the holy fathers at Nicaea.

διὰ βραχέων ἐροῦμεν͵ οὐδὲν τὸ σύνολον προστιθέντες τῆι τῶν ἁγίων πατέρων τῶν ἐν Νικαίαι ἐκτεθείσηι πίστει.

For, as we have just said, that creed is sufficient both for the knowledge of godliness and for the repudiation of all heretical false teaching. We shall speak not presuming to approach the unapproachable; but we confess our own weakness and so shut out those who would reproach us for investigating things beyond the human mind.

ὡς γὰρ ἔφθημεν εἰρηκότες͵ πρὸς πᾶσαν ἐξαρκεῖ καὶ εὐσεβείας γνῶσιν καὶ πάσης αἱρετικῆς κακοδοξίας ἀποκήρυξιν. ἐροῦμεν δὲ οὐ κατατολμῶντες τῶν ἀνεφίκτων͵ ἀλλὰ τῆι ὁμολογίαι τῆς οἰκείας ἀσθενείας ἀποκλείοντες τοῖς ἐπιφύεσθαι βουλομένοις ἐν οἷς τὰ ὑπὲρ ἄνθρωπον διασκεπτόμεθα.

 

 

WE CONFESS, then, our lord Jesus Christ, the only begotten Son of God

Ὁμολογοῦμεν τοιγαροῦν τὸν κύριον ἡμῶν Ἰησοῦν τὸν Χριστὸν τὸν υἱὸν τοῦ θεοῦ τὸν μονογενῆ͵

[a] perfect God and

θεὸν τέλειον καὶ

[b] perfect man

ἄνθρωπον τέλειον
of a rational soul and a body,  ἐκ ψυχῆς λογικῆς καὶ σώματος͵

[a] begotten before all ages from the Father in his godhead, the same in the last days, for us and for our salvation,

πρὸ αἰώνων μὲν ἐκ τοῦ πατρὸς γεννηθέντα κατὰ τὴν θεότητα͵ ἐπ΄ ἐσχάτου δὲ τῶν ἡμερῶν τὸν αὐτὸν δι΄ ἡμᾶς καὶ διὰ τὴν ἡμετέραν σωτηρίαν

[b] born of Mary the virgin, according to his humanity,

ἐκ Μαρίας τῆς παρθένου κατὰ τὴν ἀνθρωπότητα͵
one and the same  

[a] consubstantial with the Father in godhead

ὁμοούσιον τῶι πατρὶ τὸν αὐτὸν κατὰ τὴν θεότητα

[b] consubstantial with us in humanity,

καὶ ὁμοούσιον ἡμῖν κατὰ τὴν ἀνθρωπότητα.
for a union of two natures took place. δύο γὰρ φύσεων ἕνωσις γέγονεν·
Therefore we confess one Christ, one Son, one Lord. δι΄ ὃ ἕνα Χριστόν͵ ἕνα υἱόν͵ ἕνα κύριον ὁμολογοῦμεν.
According to this understanding of the unconfused union, we confess the holy virgin to be the God-bearer κατὰ ταύτην τὴν τῆς ἀσυγχύτου ἑνώσεως ἔννοιαν ὁμολογοῦμεν τὴν ἁγίαν παρθένον θεοτόκον
because God the Word took flesh and became man and from his very conception united to himself the temple he took from her. διὰ τὸ τὸν θεὸν λόγον σαρκωθῆναι καὶ ἐνανθρωπῆσαι καὶ ἐξ αὐτῆς τῆς συλλήψεως ἑνῶσαι ἑαυτῶι τὸν ἐξ αὐτῆς ληφθέντα ναόν.

 

 

 

 

As to the evangelical and apostolic expressions about the Lord, we know that theologians treat τὰς δὲ εὐαγγελικὰς καὶ ἀποστολικὰς περὶ τοῦ κυρίου φωνὰς ἴσμεν τοὺς θεολόγους ἄνδρας

some in common as of one person

τὰς μὲν κοινοποιοῦντας ὡς ἐφ΄ ἑνὸς προσώπου͵

and distinguish others as of two natures,

τὰς δὲ διαιροῦντας ὡς ἐπὶ δύο φύσεων
and interpret καὶ τὰς

the god-befitting ones in connexion with the godhead of Christ

μὲν θεοπρεπεῖς κατὰ τὴν θεότητα τοῦ Χριστοῦ͵

and the lowly ones with his humanity.

τὰς δὲ ταπεινὰς κατὰ τὴν ἀνθρωπότητα αὐτοῦ παραδιδόντας.

 

 


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