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forfeited by Its prerogative graces.
this fundamental truth, that Jesus Christ is come in the Flesh,' is, in the judgment of another Apostle, the mark of the Deceiver, of the Antichrist f. Nor do the prerogatives of our Lord's Manhood destroy Its perfection and reality, although they do undoubtedly invest It with a robe of mystery, which Faith must acknowledge, but which she cannot hope to penetrate. Christ's Manhood is not unreal because It is impersonal; because in Him the place of any created individuality at the root of thought and feeling and will is supplied by the Person of the Eternal Word, Who has wrapped around His Being a created Nature through which, in its unmutilated perfection, He acts upon humankind 8. Christ's Manhood is not unreal, because It is sinless; because the entail of any taint of transmitted sin is in Him cut off by a supernatural birth of a Virgin Mother; and because His whole life of thought, feeling, will, and action is in unfaltering harmony with the law of absolute Truth h. Nor is the reality of His Manhood impaired by any exceptional beauty whether of outward form or of mental endowment, such as might become One 'fairer than the children of men i' and taking precedence of them in all thingsk; since in Him our nature does but resume
1 1 St. John iv. 1: παν πνεύμα και ομολογεί Ιησούν Χριστόν εν σαρκί εληλυθότα, εκ του Θεού εστι. 2 St. John 7: πολλοί πλάνοι εισήλθον εις τον κόσμον, οι μη ομολογούντες Ιησούν Χριστόν ερχόμενον εν σαρκί ούτος εστιν ο πλάνος και ο Αντίχριστος.
8 The è.vutootaola of our Lord's Humanity is a result of the Hypostatic Union. To deny it is to assert that there are Two Persons in Christ, or else it is to deny that He is more that Man. Compare Hooker, Eccl. Pol. v. 52. 3, who appeals against Nestorius to Heb. ii. 16, où yèp Sýnov åyyénwv ériλαμβάνεται, αλλά σπέρματος 'Αβραάμ επιλαμβάνεται At His Incarnation the Eternal Word took on Him Human Nature, not a Human Personality. Lather appears to have denied the Impersonality of our Lord's Manhood. But see Dorner, Person Christi, Bd. ii. p. 540.
The Sinlessness of our Lord's Manhood is implied in St. Luke i. 35. Thus He is oν ο Πατήρ ήγίασε και απέστειλεν εις τον κόσμον, St. John X. 36; and He could challenge His enemies to convict Him of sin, St. John viii. 46. In St. Mark x. 18, St. Luke xviii. 19, He is not denying that He is good; but He insists that none should call Him so who did not believe Him to be God. St. Paul describes Him as tev un yróvta å uaptíav, 2 Cor. v. 21; and Christ is expressly said to be χωρίς αμαρτίας, Ηeb. iv. 15; όσιος, άκακος, αμίαντος, κεχωρισμένος από των αμαρτωλών, Heb. vii. 26; αμνός άμωμος και Botidos, i St. Pet. i. 19; ó ãylos kal dikalos, Acts iii. 14. Still more em. phatically we are told that åpapria èv aŭtô oùk čoti, 1 St. John iii. 5; while the same truth is indirectly taught, when St. Paul speaks of our Lord as sent év duorcsuatı sapkos đuaptias, Rom. viii. 3. Mr. F. W. Newman does justice to the significance of a Sinless Manhood, although, unhappily, he disbelieves in It; Phases of Faith, p. 141, sqq.
Cf. Lect IV. p. 167.
its true and typical excellence as the crowning glory of the visible creation of God l.
This reality and perfection of our Lord's Manhood has been not less jealously maintained by the Church than it is clearly asserted in the pages of Scripture. From the first the Church has taught that Jesus Christ is 'Perfect Man, of a reasonable Soul and Human Flesh subsisting.' It is sometimes hinted that believers in our Saviour's Godhead must necessarily entertain some prejudice against those passages of Scripture which expressly assert the truth of His Manhood. It is presumed that such
passages must be regarded by them as so many difficulties m to be surmounted or evaded by a theory which is supposed to be conscious of their hostilty to itself. Whereas, in truth, to a Catholic instinct, each declaration of Scripture, whatever be its apparent bearing, is welcome as being an unveiling of the Mind of God, and therefore as certainly reconcileable with other sides of truth, whether or no the method of such reconciliation be immediately obvious. As a matter of fact, our Lord's Humanity has been insisted upon by the great Church teachers of antiquity not less earnestly than His Godhead. They habitually argue that it belonged to His essential Truth to be in reality what He seemed to be. He seemed to be human; therefore He was Human n. Yet His Manhood, so they proceed to maintain,
| Ps. viii. 6-8. Cp. Heb. ii. 6-10.
m Thus 'Examination of Bampton Lectures,' p. 250. The writer thinks that our Lord's words in St. Luke iv. 18, 19; St. Matt. xx. 23 ; xxiii. 53; St. John xiv, 28, etc., are as little to be reconciled with our Lord's true Godhead, as are the passages in which He claims to have existed before Abraham or to be the Judge of all men, with true human goodness, if, after all, He be only Man. (See Lect. IV.) Yet surely a discussion of the properties or liabilities of the human body, which should take no account of the endowments of the human mind, does not necessarily deny their existence. Nor is it to be placed on the same moral level with the language of an adventurer, who should claim rights by hinting that he possessed powers and accomplishments, to which nothing corresponded in sober fact.
St. Irenæus, Adv. Hær. v. 1. 2: ei oè un aov dvopwaos èpalveto švOpwros, ούτε και ήν επ' αληθείας, έμεινε πνεύμα Θεού, έπει αόρατον το πνεύμα, ούτε αλήθεία τις ήν εν αυτώ, ου γαρ ήν εκείνα άπερ εφαίνετο. Τert. De Carme Christi, cap. 5 : ‘Si caro cum passionibus ficta, et spiritus ergo cum virtutibus falsus. Quid dimidias mendacio Christum ? Totus Veritas est. Maluit crede (non] nasci quam ex aliquâ parte mentiri, et quidem in Semet ipsum, ut carnem gestaret sine ossibus duram, sine musculis solidam, sine sanguine cruentam, sine tunicâ vestitam, sine fame esurientem, sine dentibus edentem, sine linguâ loquentem, ut phantasma auribus fuit sermo ejus per imaginem vocis.' St. Aug. De Div. Qu. 83. qu. 14: “Si phantasma fuit corpus Christi, fefellit Christus, et si fefellit, Veritas non est. Est autem Veritas Christus.
Importance of this truth to the life of the soul. 25 would have been fictitious, if any one faculty or element of human nature had been wanting to It. Therefore His Reasonable Soul was as essential as His Bodily Frame o. Without a Reasonable Soul His Humanity would have been but an animal existencer; and the intellectual side of man's nature would have been unredeemed 4. Nor did the Church in her collective capacity ever so insist on Christ's Godhead as to lose sight of the truth of His Perfect Manhood. Whether by the silent force of the belief of her children, or by her representative writers on behalf of the faith, or by the formal decisions of her councils, she has ever resisted the disposition to sacrifice the confession of Christ's created nature to that of His uncreated Godhead r. She kept at bay intellectual temptations and impulses which might have easily overmastered the mind of a merely human society. When Ebionites were abroad, she maintained against the Docetæ that our Saviour's body was not fictitious or apparitional. When the mutterings of that Humanitarian movement which culminated in the great scandal of Paulus of Samosata were distinctly audible, she asserted the truth of our Lord's Human Soul against Beryllus of Bostra s. When Arianism had not as yet ceased to be formidable, she was not tempted by Apollinaris to admit that the Logos in Christ took the place of the rational element in man. While Nestorianism was still vigorous, she condemned the Monophysite formula which practically made Christ an unincarnate God: nor did she rest until the Monothelite echo of the more signal error had been silenced by her assertion of the reality of His Human Will.
Nor is the Manhood of our Saviour prized by the Church only as a revealed dogma intellectually essential to the formal
Non ergo phantasma fuit Corpus Ejus.' Docetism struck at the
basis of truth, by sanctioning Pyrrhonism. St. Iren. Adv. Hær. iv. 33.
• St. Aug. Ep. 187, ad Dardan. n. 4: 'Non est Homo Perfectus, si vel anima carni, vel animæ ipsi mens humana defuerit.' Confess. vii. c. 19.
p St. Aug. De Div. Qu. 83, qu. 80. n. 1. 9 St. Cyr. Alex. De Inc. c. 15.
* It may suffice to quote the language of the Council of Chalcedon, A.D. 451: τέλειον τον αυτόν εν Θεότητι και τέλειον τον αυτόν εν ανθρωπότητι, Θεόν αληθώς και άνθρωπον αληθώς, τον αυτόν εκ ψυχής λογικής και σώματος, ομοούσιον τω Πατρί κατά την Θεότητα και ομοούσιον τον αυτόν ημίν κατά την ανθρωπότητα, κατά πάντα όμοιον ημίν χωρίς αμαρτίας. Routh, Opusc. ii. 78. When these words were spoken, the cycle of possible controversy on the subject was complete. The Monothelite question had virtually been settled by anticipation.
& Socr. H. E. iii. 7: čuyuxov cival Top ĉvavdowanoavta. Syn. Bost. anno 244
integrity of the Creed. Every believing Christian knows that it touches the very heart of his inner life. What becomes of the one Mediator between God and man, if the Manhood whereby He places Himself in contact with us men is but unreal and fictitious ? What becomes of His Human Example, of His genuine Sympathy, of His agonizing and worldredeeming Death, of His plenary representation of our race in heaven, of the recreative virtue of His Sacraments, of the “touch of nature which makes Him, most holy as He is, in very deed kin with us? All is forthwith uncertain, evanescent, unreal. If Christ be not truly Man, the chasm which parted earth and heaven has not been bridged over. God, as before the Incarnation, is still awful, remote, inaccessible. Tertullian's inference is no exaggeration : Cum mendacium deprehenditur Christi Caro. ... omnia quæ per Carnem Christi gesta sunt, mendacio gesta sunt. .... Eversum est totum Dei opust.' Or, as St. Cyril of Jerusalem tersely presses the solemn argument: εί φάντασμα ήν ή ενανθρώπησις, φάντασμα και η σωτηρία 1.
2. Let it be observed, on the other hand, that the Nicene assertion of our Blessed Lord's Divinity does not involve any tacit mutilation or degradation of the idea conveyed by the sacred Name of God. When Jesus Christ is said by His Church to be God, that word is used in its natural, its absolute, its incommunicable sense. This must be constantly borne in mind, if we would escape from equivocations which might again and again obscure the true point before us. For Arianism will confess Christ's Divinity, if, when it terms Him God, it may really mean that He is only a being of an inferior and created nature. Socinianism will confess Christ's Divinity, if this confession involves nothing more emphatic than an acknowledgement of the fact that certain moral features of God's character shone forth from the Human Life of Christ with an absolutely unrivalled splendour. Pantheism will confess Christ's Divinity, but then it is a Divinity which He must share with the uni
Christ may well be divine, when all is divine, although Pantheism too may admit that Christ is divine in a higher sense than
because He has more clearly recognised or exhibited the eternal oneness of the finite and the Infinite, of God and humanity. The coarsest forms of unbelief will confess our Lord's Divinity, if they may proceed to add, by way of explanation, that such language is but the echo of
+ Adv. Marc. iii. 8.
u Catech. iv. 9.
Christ is not the god of an Apotheosis.
un apotheosis, informally decreed to the prophet of Nazareth by the fervid but uncritical enthusiasm of His Church.
No: the Divinity of Jesus Christ is not to be thus emptied of its most solemn and true significance. It is no mere titular distinction, such as the hollow or unthinking flattery of a multitude might yield to a political chief, or to a distinguished philanthropist. Indeed Jesus Christ Himself, by His own teaching, had made such an apotheosis of Himself morally impossible. He had, as
no teacher before Him, raised, expanded, spiritualized man’s idea of the Being and Nature of the Great Creator. Baur has remarked that this higher exhibition of the solitary and incommunicable Life of God is nowhere so apparent as in that very Gospel the special object of which is to exhibit Christ Himself as the eternal Word made Flesh , Indeed God was too vividly felt to be a living Presence by the early Christians, to be transformed by them upon occasion into a decoration which might wreathe the brow of any, though it were the highest human virtue. In heathendom this was naturally otherwise. Yet animal indulgence and intellectual scepticism must have killed out the sense of primary truths which nature and conscience had originally taught, before imperial Rome could feel no difficulty in decreeing temples and altars to such samples of our race as were not a few of the men who successively filled the throne of the Cæsars 4. The Church, with her eye upon the King Eternal, Immortal, Invisible ?, could never have raised Jesus to the full honours of Divinity, had He been merely Man And Christianity from the first has proclaimed herself, not the authoress of an apotheosis, but the child and the product of an Incarnation.
She could not have been both. Speaking historically, an apotheosis belongs to the Greek world; while half-mimicries
Vorlesungen über N. T. Theologie, p. 354. 3 See Döllinger, Heidenthum und Judenthum, bk. viii. pt. 2. § 2. The city of Cyzicus was deprived of its freedom for being unwilling to worship Augustus (Tac. Ann. iv. 36). Thrasea Pætus was held guilty of treason for refusing to believe in the deification of Poppæa (Tac. Ann. xvi. 22). Caligula insisted on being worshipped as a god during his lifetime (Suetonius, Caius, xxi. 22). On the number of cattle sacrificed to Domitian, see Pliny, Panegyr. xi. The worship of Antinous, who had lived on terms of criminal intercourse with Hadrian, was earnestly promoted by that Emperor. Döllinger reckons fifty-three apotheoses between Cæsar and Diocletian, fifteen of which were of ladies belonging to the Imperial family. For the discredit into which the Imperial apotheosis fell among the literary classes, see Boissier, Religion Romaine, i. 175, sqq.
1 Tim. i. 17.