Against Eunomius, Book III-VII

Author: Gregory of Nyssa

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Transliteration of Greek words: All phonetical except: w = omega; h serves three puposes: 1. = Eta; 2. = rough breathing, when appearing initially before a vowel; 3. = in the aspirated letters theta = th, phi = ph, chi = ch. Accents are given immediately after their corresponding vowels: acute = ' , grave = `, circumflex = ^. The character ' doubles as an apostrophe, when necessary.



[Translated by the Rev. Henry Austin Wilson, M.A., Fellow and Librarian of Magdalen College, Oxford.]


1. This third book shows a third fall of Eunomius, as refuting himself, and sometimes saying that the Son is to be called Only-begotten in virtue of, natural generation, and that Holy Scripture proves this from the first; at other times, that by reason of His being created He should not be called a Son, but a "product," or "creature."

IF, when a man "strives lawfully(1)," he finds a limit to his struggle in the contest by his adversary's either refusing the struggle, and withdrawing of his own accord in favour of his conqueror from his effort for victory, or being thrown according to the rules of wrestling in three falls (whereby the glory of the crown is bestowed with all the splendour of proclamation upon him who has proved victorious in the umpire's judgment), then, since Eunomius, though he has been already twice thrown in our previous arguments, does not consent that truth should hold the tokens of her victory over falsehood, but yet a third time raises the dust against godly doctrine in his accustomed arena of falsehood with his composition, strengthening himself for his struggle on the side of deceit, our statement of truth must also be now called forth to put his falsehood to rout, placing its hopes in Him Who is the Giver and the Judge of victory, and at the same time deriving strength from the very unfairness of the adversaries' tricks of wrestling. For we are not ashamed to confess that we have prepared for our contest no weapon of argument sharpened by rhetoric, that we can bring forward to aid us in the fight with those arrayed against us, no cleverness or sharpness of dialectic, such as with inexperienced judges lays even on truth the suspicion of falsehood. One strength our reasoning against falsehood has--first the very Word Himself, Who is the might of our word,(2) and in the next place the rottenness of the arguments set against us, which is overthrown and falls by its own spontaneous action. Now in order that it may be made as clear as possible to all men, that the very efforts Of Eunomius serve as means for his own overthrow to those who contend with him, I will set forth to my readers his phantom doctrine (for so I think that doctrine may be called which is quite outside the truth), and I would have you all, who are present at our struggle, and watch the encounter now taking place between my doctrine and that which is matched with it, to be just judges of the lawful striving of our arguments, that by your just award the reasoning of godliness may be proclaimed as victor to the whole theatre of the Church, having won undisputed victory over ungodliness, and being decorated, in virtue of the three falls of its enemy, with the unfading crown of them that are saved. Now this statement is set forth against the truth by way of preface to his third discourse, and this is the fashion of it:--"Preserving," he says, "natural order, and abiding by those things which are known to us from above, we do not refuse to speak of the Son, seeing He is begotten, even by the name of 'product of generation(3),' since the generated essence and(4) the appellation of Son make such a relation of words appropriate." I beg the reader to give his attention carefully to this point, that while he calls God both "begotten" and "Son," he refers the reason of such names to "natural order," and calls to witness to this conception the knowledge possessed from above: so that if anything should be found in the course of what follows contrary to the positions be has laid down, it is clear to all that he is overthrown by himself, refuted by his own arguments before ours are brought against him. And so let us consider his statement in the light of his own words. He confesses that the name of "Son" would by no means be properly applied to the Only-begotten God, did not "natural order," as he says, confirm the appellation. If, then, one were to withdraw the order of nature from the consideration of the designation of "Son," his use of this name, being deprived of its proper and natural significance, will be meaningless. And moreover the fact that he says these statements are confirmed, in that they abide by the knowledge possessed from above, is a strong additional support to the orthodox view touching the designation of "Son," seeing that the inspired teaching of the Scriptures, which comes to us from above, confirms our argument on these matters. If these things are so, and this is a standard of truth that admits of no deception, that these two concur--the "natural order," as he says, and the testimony of the knowledge given from above confirming the natural interpretation--it is clear, that to assert anything contrary to these, is nothing else than manifestly to fight against the truth itself. Let us hear again what this writer, who makes nature his instructor in the matter of this name, and says that he abides by the knowledge given to us from above by the instruction of the saints, sets out at length a little further on, after the passage I have just quoted. For I will pretermit for the time the continuous recital of what is set next in order in his treatise, that the contradiction in what he has written may not escape detection, being veiled by the reading of the intervening matter. "The same argument," he says, "will apply also in the case of what is made and created, as both the natural interpretation and the mutual relation of the things, and also the use of the saints, give us free authority for the use of the formula: wherefore one would not be wrong in treating the thing made as corresponding to the maker, and the thing created to the creator." Of what product of making or of creation does he speak, as having naturally the relation expressed in its name towards its maker and creator? If of those we contemplate in the creation, visible and invisible (as Paul recounts, when he says that by Him all things were created, visible and invisible)(5), so that this relative conjunction of names has a proper and special application, that which is made being set in relation to the maker, that which is created to the creator,--if this is his meaning, we agree with him. For in fact, since the Lord is the Maker of angels, the angel is assuredly a thing made by Him that made him: and since the Lord is the Creator of the world, clearly the world itself and all that is therein are called the creature of Him that created them. If however it is with this intention that he makes his interpretation of "natural order," systematizing the appropriation of relative terms with a view to their mutual relation in verbal sense, even thus it would be an extraordinary thing, seeing that every one is aware of this, that he should leave his doctrinal statement to draw out for us a system of grammatical trivialities(6). But if it is to the Only-begotten God that he applies such phrases, so as to say that He is a thing made by Him that made Him, a creature of Him that created Him, and to refer this terminology to "the use of the saints," let him first of all show us in his statement what saints he says there are who declared the Maker of all things to be a product and a creature, and whom he follows in this audacity of phrase. The Church knows as saints those whose hearts were divinely guided by the Holy Spirit,--patriarchs, lawgivers, prophets, evangelists, apostles. If any among these is found to declare in his inspired words that God over all, Who "upholds all things with the word of His power," and grasps with His hand all things that are, and by Himself called the universe into being by the mere act of His will, is a thing created and a product, he will stand excused, as following, as he says, the "use of the saints(7)" in proceeding to formulate such doctrines. But if the knowledge of the Holy Scriptures is freely placed within the reach of all, and nothing is forbidden to or hidden from any of those who choose to share in the divine instruction, how comes it that he endeavours to lead his hearers astray by his misrepresentation of the Scriptures, referring the term "creature," applied to the Only-begotten, to "the use of the saints"? For that by Him all things were made, you may hear almost from the whole of their holy utterance, from Moses and the prophets and apostles who come after him, whose particular expressions it would be tedious here to set forth. Enough for our purpose, with the others, and above the others, is the sublime John, where in the preface to his discourse on the Divinity of the Only- begotten he proclaims aloud the fact that there is none of the things that were made which was not made through Him(8), a fact which is an incontestable and positive proof of His being Lord of the creation, not reckoned in the list of created things. For if all things that are made exist by no other but by Him (and John bears witness that nothing among the things that are, throughout the creation, was made without Him), who is so blinded in understanding as not to see in the Evangelist's proclamation the truth, that He Who made all the creation is assuredly something else besides the creation? For if all that is numbered among the things that were made has its being through Him, while He Himself is" in the beginning," and is" with God," being God, and Word, and Life, and Light, and express Image, and Brightness, and if none of the things that were made throughout creation is named by the same names--(not Word, not God, not Life, not Light, not Truth, not express Image, not Brightness, not any of the other names proper to the Deity is to be found employed of the creation)--then it is clear that He Who is these things is by nature something else besides the creation, which neither is nor is called any of these things. If, indeed, there existed in such phrases an identity of names between the creation and its Maker, he might perhaps be excused for making the name of "creation" also common to the thing created and to Him Who made it, on the ground of the community of the other names: but if the characteristics which are contemplated by means of the names, in the created and in the uncreated nature, are in no case reconcilable or common to both, how can the misrepresentation of that man fail to be manifest to all, who dares to apply the name of servitude to Him Who, as the Psalmist declares, "ruleth with His power for ever(9)," and to bring Him Who, as the Apostle says, "in all things hath the pre-eminence(1)," to a level with the servile nature, by means of the name and conception of "creation"? For that all(2) the creation is in bondage the great Paul declares(3),--he who in the schools above the heavens was instructed in that knowledge which may not be spoken, learning these things in that place where every voice that conveys meaning by verbal utterance is still, and where unspoken meditation becomes the word of instruction, teaching to the purified heart by means of the silent illumination of the thoughts those truths which transcend speech. If then on the one hand Paul proclaims aloud "the creation is in bondage," and on the other the Only-begotten God is truly Lord and God over all, and John bears witness to the fact that the whole creation of the things that were made is by Him, how can any one, who is in any sense whatever numbered among Christians, hold his peace when he sees Eunomius, by his inconsistent and inconsequent systematizing, degrading to the humble state of the creature, by means of an identity of name: that tends to servitude, that power of Lordship which surpasses all rule and all authority? And if he says that he has some of the saints who declared Him to be a slave, or created, or made, or any of these lowly and servile names, lo, here are the Scriptures. Let him, or some other on his behalf, produce to us one such phrase, and we will hold our peace. But if there is no such phrase (and there could never be found in those inspired Scriptures which we believe any such thought as to support this impiety), what need is there to strive further upon points admitted with one who not only misrepresents the words of the saints, but even contends against his own definitions? For if the "order of nature," as he himself admits, bears additional testimony to the Son's name by reason of His being begotten, and thus the correspondence of the name is according to the relation of the Begotten to the Begetter, how comes it that he wrests the significance of the word "Son" from its natural application, and changes the relation to "the thing made and its maker"--a relation which applies not only in the case of the elements of the universe, but might also be asserted of a gnat or an ant--that in so far as each of these is a thing made, the relation of its name to its maker is similarly equivalent? The blasphemous nature of his doctrine is clear, not only from many other passages, but even from those quoted: and as for that "use of the saints" which he alleges that he follows in these expressions, it is clear that there is no such use at all.

2. He then once more excellently, approximately, and clearly examines and expounds the passage, "The Lord created Me."

Perhaps that passage in the Proverbs might be brought forward against us which the champions of heresy are wont to cite as a testimony that the Lord was created--the passage," The Lord created me in the beginning of His ways, for His works(4)." For because these words are spoken by Wisdom, and the Lord is called Wisdom by the great Paul(5), they allege this passage as though the Only-begotten God Himself, under the name of Wisdom, acknowledges that He was created by the Maker of all things. I imagine, however, that the godly sense of this utterance is clear to moderately attentive and painstaking persons, so that, in the case of those who are instructed in the dark sayings of the Proverbs, no injury is done to the doctrine of the faith. Yet I think it well briefly to discuss what is to be said on this subject, that when the intention of this passage is more clearly explained, the heretical doctrine may have no room for boldness of speech on the ground that it has evidence in the writing of the inspired author. It is universally admitted that the name of "proverb," in its scriptural use, is not applied with regard to the evident sense, but is used with a view to some hidden meaning, as the Gospel thus gives the name of "proverbs(6)" to dark and obscure sayings; so that the "proverb," if one were to set forth the interpretation of the name by a definition, is a form of speech which, by means of one set of ideas immediately presented, points to something else which is hidden, or a form of speech which does not point out the aim of the thought directly, but gives its instruction by an indirect signification. Now to this book such a name is especially attached as a title, and the force of the appellation is at once interpreted in the preface by the wise Solomon. For he does not call the sayings in this book "maxims," or "counsels," or "clear instruction," but "proverbs," and proceeds to add an explanation. What is the force of the signification of this word? "To know," he tells us, "wisdom and instruction(7)"; not setting before us the course of instruction in wisdom according to the method common in other kinds of learning; he bids a man, on the other hand (8), first to become wise by previous training, and then so to receive the instruction conveyed by proverb. For he tells us that there are "words of wisdom" which reveal their aim "by a turn(9)." For that which is not directly understood needs some turn for the apprehension of the thing concealed; and as Paul, when about to exchange the literal sense of the history for figurative contemplation, says that he will "change his voice(1),'' so here the manifestation of the hidden meaning is called by Solomon a "turn of the saying," as if the beauty of the thoughts could not be perceived, unless one were to obtain a view of the revealed brightness of the thought by turning the apparent meaning of the saying round about, as happens with the plumage with which the peacock is decked behind. For in him, one who sees the back of his plumage quite despises it for its want of beauty and tint, as a mean sight; but if one were to turn it round and show him the other view of it, he then sees the varied painting of nature, the half-circle shining in the midst with its dye of purple, and the golden mist round the circle ringed round and glistening at its edge with its many rainbow hues. Since then there is no beauty in what is obvious in the saying (for "all the glory of the king's daughter is within(2)," shining with its hidden ornament in golden thoughts), Solomon of necessity suggests to the readers of this book "the turn of the saying," that thereby they may "understand a parable and a dark saying, words of the wise and riddles(3)." Now as this proverbial teaching embraces these elements, a reasonable man will not receive any passage cited from this book, be it never so clear and intelligible at first sight, without examination and inspection; for assuredly there is some mystical contemplation underlying even those passages which seem manifest. And if the obvious passages of the work necessarily demand a somewhat minute scrutiny, how much more do those passages require it where even immediate apprehension presents to us much that is obscure and difficult?

Let us then begin our examination from the context of the passage in question, and see whether the reading of the neighbouring clauses gives any clear sense. The discourse describes Wisdom as uttering certain sayings in her own person. Every student knows what is said in the passage(4) where Wisdom makes counsel her dwelling-place, and calls to her knowledge and understanding, and says that she has as a possession strength and prudence (while she is herself called intelligence), and that she walks in the ways of righteousness and has her conversation in the ways of just judgement, and declares that by her kings reign, and princes write the decree of equity, and monarchs win possession of their own land. Now every one will see that the considerate reader will receive none of the phrases quoted without scrutiny according to the obvious sense. For if by her kings are advanced to their rule. and if from her monarchy derives its strength, it follows of necessity that Wisdom is displayed to us as a king-maker, and transfers to herself the blame of those who bear evil rule in their kingdoms. But we know of kings who in truth advance under the guidance of Wisdom to the rule that has no end--the poor in spirit, whose possession is the kingdom of heaven(5), as the Lord promises, Who is the Wisdom of the Gospel: and such also we recognize as the princes who bear rule over their passions, who are not enslaved by the dominion of sin, who inscribe the decree of equity upon their own life, as it were upon a tablet. Thus, too, that laudable despotism which changes, by the alliance of Wisdom, the democracy of the passions into the monarchy of reason, brings into bondage what were running unrestrained into mischievous liberty, I mean all carnal and earthly thoughts: for "the flesh lusteth against the Spirit(6)," and rebels against the government of the soul. Of this land, then, such a monarch wins possession, whereof he was, according to the first creation, appointed as ruler by the Word.

Seeing then that all reasonable men admit that these expressions are to be read in such a sense as this, rather than in that which appears in the words at first sight, it is consequently probable that the phrase we are discussing, being written in close connection with them, is not received by prudent men absolutely and without examination. "If I declare to you," she says, "the things that happen day by day, I will remember to recount the things from everlasting: the Lord created me(7)." What pray, has the slave of the literal text, who sits listening closely to the sound of the syllables, like the Jews, to say to this phrase? Does not the conjunction, "If I declare to you the things that happen day by day, the Lord created me," ring strangely in the ears of those who listen attentively? as though, if she did not declare the things that happen day by day, she will by consequence deny absolutely that she was created. For he who says, "If I declare, I was created." leaves you by his silence to understand, "I was not created, if I do not declare." "The Lord created me," she says, "in the beginning of His ways, for His works. He set me up from everlasting, in the beginning, before He made the earth, before He made the depths, before the springs of the waters came forth, before the mountains were settled, before all hills, He begetteth me(8)." What new order of the formation of a creature is this? First it is created, and after that it is set up, and then it is begotten. "The Lord made," she says, "lands, even uninhabited, and the inhabited extremes of the earth under heaven(9)." Of what Lord does she speak as the maker of land both uninhabited and inhabited? Of Him surely, who made wisdom. For both the one saying and the other are uttered by the same person; both that which says, "the Lord created me," and that which adds, "the Lord made land, even uninhabited." Thus the Lord will be the maker equally of both, of Wisdom herself, and of the inhabited and uninhabited land. What then are we to make of the saying, "All things were made by Him, and without Him was riot anything made(1)"? For if one and the same Lord creates both Wisdom (which they advise us to understand of the Son), and also the particular things which are included in the Creation, how does the sublime John speak truly, when he says that all things were made by Him? For this Scripture gives a contrary sound to that of the Gospel, in ascribing to the Creator of Wisdom the making of land uninhabited and inhabited. So, too, with all that follows(2):--she speaks of a Throne of God set apart upon the winds, and says that the clouds above are made strong, and the fountains under the heaven sure; and the context contains many similar expressions, demanding in a marked degree that interpretation by a minute and clear-sighted intelligence, which is to be observed in the passages already quoted. What is the throne that is set apart upon the winds? What is the security of the fountains under the heaven? How are the clouds above made strong? If any one should interpret the passage with reference to visible objects(3), he will find that the facts are at considerable variance with the words. For who knows not that the extreme parts of the earth under heaven, by excess in one direction or in the other, either by being too close to the sun's heat, or by being too far removed from it, are uninhabitable; some being excessively dry and parched, other parts superabounding in moisture, and chilled by frost, and that only so much is inhabited as is equally removed from the extreme of each of the two opposite conditions? But if it is the midst of the earth that is occupied by man, how does the proverb say that the extremes of the earth under heaven are inhabited? Again, what strength could one perceive in the clouds, that that passage may have a true sense, according to its apparent intention, which says that the clouds above have been made strong? For the nature of cloud is a sort of rather slight vapour diffused through the air, which, being light, by reason of its great subtilty, is borne on the breath of the air, and, when forced together by compression, falls down through the air that held it up, in the form of a heavy drop of rain. What then is the strength in these, which offer no resistance to the touch? For in the cloud you may discern the slight and easily dissolved character of air. Again, how is the Divine throne set apart on the winds that are by nature unstable? And as for her saying at first that she is "created," finally, that she is "begotten," and between these two utterances that she is" set up," what account of this could any one profess to give that would agree with the common and obvious sense? The point also on which a doubt was previously raised in our argument, the declaring, that is, of the things that happen day by day, and the remembering to recount the things from everlasting, is, as it were, a condition of Wisdom's assertion that she was created by God.

Thus, since it has been clearly shown by what bus been said, that no part of this passage is such that its language should be received without examination and reflection, it may be well, perhaps, as with the rest, so not to interpret the text, "The Lord created me," according to that sense which immediately presents itself to us from the phrase, but to seek with all attention and care what is to be piously understood from the utterance. Now, to apprehend perfectly the sense of the passage before us, would seem to belong only to those who search out the depths by the aid of the Holy Spirit, and know how to speak in the Spirit the divine mysteries: our account, however, will only busy itself with the passage in question so far as not to leave its drift entirely unconsidered. What, then, is our account? It is not, I think, possible that that wisdom which arises in any man from divine illumination should come alone, apart from the other gifts of the Spirit, but there must needs enter in therewith also the grace of prophecy. For if the apprehension of the truth of the things that are is the peculiar power of wisdom, and prophecy includes the clear knowledge of the things that are about to be, one would not be possessed of the gift of wisdom in perfection, if he did not further include in his knowledge, by the aid of prophecy, the future likewise. Now, since it is not mere human wisdom that is claimed for himself by Solomon, who says, "God hath taught me wisdom(4)," and who, where he says "all my words are spoken from God(5)," refers to God all that is spoken by himself, it might be well in this part of the Proverbs to trace out the prophecy that is mingled with his wisdom. But we say that in the earlier part of the book, where he says that "Wisdom has builded herself a house(6)" he refers darkly in, these words to the preparation of the flesh of the Lord: for the trite Wisdom did not dwell in another's building, but built for Itself that dwelling-place from the body of the Virgin. Here, however, he adds to his discourse(7) that which of both is made one--of the house, I mean, and of the Wisdom which built the house, that is to say, of the Humanity and of the Divinity that was commingled with man(8); and to each of these he applies suitable and fitting terms, as you may see to be the case also in the Gospels, where the discourse, proceeding as befits its subject, employs the more lofty and divine phraseology to indicate the Godhead, and that which is humble and lowly to indicate the Manhood. So we may see in this passage also Solomon prophetically moved, and delivering to us in its fulness the mystery of the Incarnation(9). For we speak first of the eternal power and energy of Wisdom; and here the evangelist, to a certain extent, agrees with him in his very words. For as the latter in his comprehensive(1) phrase proclaimed Him to be the cause and Maker of all things, so Solomon says that by Him were made those individual things which are included in the whole. For he tells us that God by Wisdom established the earth, and in understanding prepared the heavens, and all that follows these in order, keeping to the same sense: and that he might not seem to pass over without mention the gift of excellence in men, he again goes on to say, speaking in the person of Wisdom, the words we mentioned a little earlier; I mean, "I made counsel my dwelling-place, and knowledge, and understanding(2)," and all that relates to instruction in intellect and knowledge.

After recounting these and the like matters, he proceeds to introduce also his teaching concerning the dispensation with regard to man, why the Word was made flesh. For seeing that it is clear to all that God Who is over all has in Himself nothing as a thing created or imported, not power nor wisdom, nor light, nor word, nor life, nor truth, nor any at all of those things which are contemplated in the fulness of the Divine bosom (all which things the Only-begotten God is, Who is in the bosom of the Father(3), the name of "creation" could not properly be applied to any of those things which are contemplated in God, so that the Son Who is in the Father, or the Word Who is in the Beginning, or the Light Who is in the Light, or the Life Who is in the Life, or the Wisdom Who is in the Wisdom, should say, "the Lord created me." For if the Wisdom of God is created (and Christ is the Power of God and the Wisdom of God(4)), God, it would follow, has His Wisdom as a thing imported, receiving afterwards, as the result of making, something which He had not at first. But surely He Who is in the bosom of the Father does not permit us to conceive the bosom of the Father as ever void of Himself. He Who is in the beginning is surely not of the things which come to be in that bosom from without, but being the fulness of all good, He is conceived as being always in the Father, not waiting to arise in Him as the result of creation, so that the Father should not be conceived as at any time void of good, but He Who is conceived as being in the eternity of the Father's Godhead is always in Him, being Power, and Life, and Truth, and Wisdom, and the like. Accordingly the words "created me" do not proceed from the Divine and immortal nature, but from that which was commingled with it in the Incarnation from our created nature. How comes it then that the same, called wisdom, and understanding, and intelligence, establishes the earth, and prepares the heavens, and breaks up the deeps, and yet is here "created for the beginning of His works(5)"? Such a dispensation, he tells us, is not set forward without great cause. But since men, after receiving the commandment of the things we should observe, cast away by disobedience the grace of memory, and became forgetful, for this cause, "that I may declare to you the things that happen day by day for your salvation, and may put you in mind by recounting the things from everlasting, which you have forgotten (for it is no new gospel that I now proclaim, but I labour at your restoration to your first estate),--for this cause I was created, Who ever am, and need no creation in order to be; so that I am the beginning of ways for the works of God, that is for men. For the first way being destroyed, there must needs again be consecrated for the wanderers a new and living way(6), even I myself, Who am the way." And this view, that the sense of "created me" has reference to the Humanity, the divine apostle more clearly sets before us by his own words when he charges us, "Put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ(7)," and also where (using the same word) he says, "Put on the new man which after God is created(8)" For if the garment of salvation is one, and that is Christ, one cannot say that "the new man, which after God is created," is any other than Christ, but it is clear that he who has "put on Christ" has "put on the new man which after God is created." For actually He alone is properly named "the new man," Who did not appear in the life of man by the known and ordinary ways of nature, but in His case alone creation, in a strange and special form, was instituted anew. For this reason he names the same Person, when regarding the wonderful manner of His birth(9), "the new man, which after God is created," and, when looking to the Divine nature, which was blended(1) in the creation of this "new man," he calls Him "Christ": so that the two names (I mean the name of "Christ" and the name of "the new man which after God is created") are applied to one and the same Person,

Since, then, Christ is Wisdom, let the intelligent reader consider our opponent's account of the matter, and our own, and judge which is the more pious, which better preserves in the text those conceptions which are befitting the Divine nature; whether that which declares the Creator and Lord of all to have been made, and places Him on a level with the creation that is in bondage, or that rather which looks to the Incarnation, and preserves the due proportion with regard to our conception alike of the Divinity and of the Humanity, bearing in mind that the great Paul testifies in favour of our view, who sees in the "new man" creation, and in the true Wisdom the power of creation. And, further, the order of the passage agrees with this view of the doctrine it conveys. For if the "beginning of the ways" bad not been created among us, the foundation of those ages for which we look would not have been laid; nor would the Lord have become for us "the Father of the age to come(2), "had not a Child been born to us, according to Isaiah, and His name been called, both all the other titles which the prophet gives Him, and withal" The Father of the age to come." Thus first there came to pass the mystery wrought in virginity, and the dispensation of the Passion, and then the wise master-builders of the Faith laid the foundation of the Faith: and this is Christ, the Father of the age to come, on Whom is built the life of the ages that have no end. And when this has come to pass, to the end that in each individual believer may be wrought the divine decrees of the Gospel law, and the varied gifts of the Holy Spirits--(all which the divine Scripture figuratively names, with a suitable significance, "mountains" and "hills," calling righteousness the "mountains" of God, and speaking of His judgments as "deeps(3)," and giving the name of "earth" to that which is sown by the Word and brings forth abundant fruit; or in that sense in which we are taught by David to understand peace by the "mountains," and righteousness by the "hills(4)"),- -Wisdom is begotten in the faithful, and the saying is found true. For He Who is in those who have received Him, is not yet begotten in the unbelieving. Thus, that these things may be wrought in us, their Maker must be begotten in us. For if Wisdom is begotten in us, then in each of us is prepared by God both land, and land uninhabited,--the land, that which receives the sowing and the ploughing of the Word, the uninhabited land, the heart cleared of evil inhabitants,--and thus our dwelling will be upon the extreme parts of the earth. For since in the earth some is depth, and some is surface, when a man is not buried in the earth, or, as it were, dwelling in a cave by reason of thinking of things beneath (as is the life of those who live in sin, who "stick fast in the deep mire where no ground is(5)," whose life is truly a pit, as the Psalm says, "let not the pit shut her mouth upon me(6)")--if, I say, a man, when Wisdom is begotten in him, thinks of the things that are above, and touches the earth only so much as he needs must, such a man inhabits "the extreme parts of the earth under heavens," not plunging deep in earthly thought; with him Wisdom is present, as he prepares in himself heaven instead of earth: and when, by carrying out the precepts into act, he makes strong for himself the instruction of the clouds above, and, enclosing the great and widespread sea of wickedness, as it were with a beach, by his exact conversation, hinders the troubled water from proceeding forth from his mouth; and if by the grace of instruction he be made to dwell among the fountains, pouring forth the stream of his discourse with sure caution, that he may not give to any man for drink the turbid fluid of destruction in place of pure water, and if he be lifted up above all earthly paths and become aerial in his life, advancing towards that spiritual life which he speaks of as "the winds," so that he is set apart to be a throne of Him Who is seated in him (as was Paul separated for the Gospel to be a chosen vessel to bear the name of God, who, as it is elsewhere expressed, was made a throne, bearing Him that sat upon him)--when, I say, he is established in these and like ways, so that he who has already fully made up in himself the land inhabited by God, now rejoices in gladness that he is made the father, not of wild and senseless beasts, but of men (and these would be godlike thoughts, which are fashioned according to the Divine image, by faith in Him Who has been created and begotten, and set up in us;--and faith, according to the words of Paul, is conceived as the foundation whereby wisdom is begotten in the faithful, and all the things that I have spoken of are wrought)--then, I say, the life of the man who has been thus established is truly blessed, for Wisdom is at all times in agreement with him, and rejoices with him who daily finds gladness in her alone. For the Lord rejoices in His saints, and there is joy in heaven over those who are being saved, and Christ, as the father, makes a feast for his rescued son. Though we have spoken hurriedly of these matters, let the careful man read the original text of the Holy Scripture, and fit its dark sayings to our reflections, testing whether it is not far better to consider that the meaning of these dark sayings has this reference, and not that which is attributed to it at first sight. For it is not possible that the theology of John should be esteemed true, which recites that all created things are the work of the Word, if in this passage He Who created Wisdom be believed to have made together with her all other things also. For in that case all things will not be by her, but she will herself be counted with the things that were made.

And that this is the reference of the enigmatical sayings is clearly revealed by the passage that follows, which says, "Now therefore hearken unto me, my son: and blessed is he that keepeth my ways(7)," meaning of course by "ways" the approaches to virtue, the beginning of which is the possession of Wisdom. Who, then, who looks to the divine Scripture, will not agree that the enemies of the truth are at once impious and slanderous?--impious, because, so far as in them lies, they degrade the unspeakable glory of the Only-begotten God, and unite it with the creation, striving to show that the Lord Whose power over all things is only- begotten, is one of the things that were made by Him: slanderous, because, though Scripture itself gives them no ground for such opinions, they arm themselves against piety as though they drew their evidence from that source. Now since they can by no means show any passage of the Holy Scriptures which leads us to look upon the pre-temporal glory of the Only- begotten God in conjunction with the subject creation, it is well, these points being proved, that the tokens of victory over falsehood should be adduced as testimony to the doctrine of godliness, and that sweeping aside these verbal systems of theirs by which they make the creature answer to the creator, and the thing made to the maker, we should confess, as the Gospel from heaven teaches us, the well-beloved Son--not a bastard, not a counterfeit; but that, accepting with the name of Son all that naturally belongs to that name, we should say that He Who is of Very God is Very God, and that we should believe of Him all that we behold in the Father, because They are One, and in the one is conceived the other, not overpassing Him, not inferior to Him, not altered or subject to change in any Divine or excellent property.

3. He then shows, from the instance of Adam and Abel, and other exam files, the absence of alienation of essence in the case of the "generate" and "ungenerate."

Now seeing that Eunomius' conflict with himself has been made manifest, where he has been shown to contradict himself, at one time saying, "He ought to be called 'Son,' according to nature, because He is begotten," at another that, because He is created, He is no more called "Son," but a "product," I think it right that the careful and attentive reader, as it is not possible, when two statements are mutually at variance, that the truth should be found equally in both, should reject of the two that which is impious and blasphemous--that, I mean, with regard to the "creature" and the "product," and should assent to that only which is of orthodox tendency, which confesses that the appellation of "Son" naturally attaches to the Only-begotten God: so that the word of truth would seem to be recommended even by the voice of its enemies.

I resume my discourse, however, taking up that point of his argument which we originally set aside. "We do not refuse," he says, "to call the Son. seeing He is generate, even by the name of 'product of generation(8), since the generated essence itself, and the appellation of 'Son,' make such a relation of words appropriate" Meanwhile let the reader who is critically following the argument remember this, that in speaking of the "generated essence" in the case of the Only-begotten, he by consequence allows us to speak of the "ungenerate essence" in the case of the Father, so that neither absence of generation, nor generation, can any longer be supposed to constitute the essence, but the essence must be taken separately, and its being, or not being begotten, must be conceived separately by means of the peculiar attributes contemplated in it. Let us, however, consider more carefully his argument on this point. He says that an essence has been begotten, and that the name of this generated essence is "Son." Well, at this point our argument will convict that of our opponents on two grounds, first, of an attempt at knavery, secondly, of slackness in their attempt against ourselves. For he is playing the knave when he speaks of "generation of essence," in order to establish his opposition between the essences, when once they are divided in respect of a difference of nature between "generate" and "ungenerate": while the slackness of their attempt is shown by the very positions their knavery tries to establish. For he who says the essence is generate, clearly defines generation as being something else distinct from the essence, so that the significance of generation cannot be assigned to the word "essence." For he has not in this passage represented the matter as he often does, so as to say that generation is itself the essence, but acknowledges that the essence is generated, so that there is produced in his readers a distinct notion in the case of each word: for one conception arises in him who hears that it was generated, and another is called up by the name of "essence." Our argument may be made clearer by example. The Lord says in the Gospel(9) that a woman, when her travail is drawing near, is in sorrow, but afterwards rejoices in gladness because a man is born into the world. As then in this passage we derive from the Gospel two distinct conceptions,--one the birth which we conceive to be by way of generation, the other that which results from the birth (for the birth is not the man, but the man is by the birth),--so here too, when Eunomius confesses that the essence was generated, we learn by the latter word that the essence comes from something, and by the Former we conceive that subject itself which has its real being from something. If then the signification of essence is one thing, and the word expressing generation suggests to us another conception, their clever contrivances are quite gone to ruin, like earthen vessels hurled one against the other, and mutually smashed to pieces. For it will no longer be possible for them, if they apply the opposition of "generate" and "ungenerate" to the essence of the Father and the Son, to apply at the same time to the things themselves the mutual conflict between these names(1). For as it is confessed by Eunomius that the essence is generate (seeing that the example from the Gospel explains the meaning of such a phrase, where, when we hear that a man is generated, we do not conceive the man to be the same thing as his generation, but receive a separate conception in each of the two words), heresy will surely no longer be permitted to express by such words her doctrine of the difference of the essences. In order, however, that our account of these matters may be cleared up as far as possible, let us once more discuss the point in the following way. He Who framed the universe made the nature of man with all things in the beginning, and after Adam was made, He then appointed for men the law of generation one from another, saying, "Be fruitful and multiply(2)." Now while Abel came into existence by way of generation, what reasonable man would deny that, in the actual sense of human generation, Adam existed ungenerately? Yet the first man had in himself the complete definition of man's essential nature, and he who was generated of him was enrolled under the same essential name. But if the essence that was generated was made anything other than that which was not generated, the same essential name would not apply to both: for of those things whose essence is different, the essential name also is not the same. Since, then, the essential nature of Adam and of Abel is marked by the same characteristics, we must certainly agree that one essence is in both, and that the one and the other are exhibited in the same nature. For Adam and Abel are both one so far as the definition of their nature is concerned, but are distinguished one from the other without confusion by the individual attributes observed in each of them. We cannot therefore properly say that Adam generated another essence besides himself, but rather that of himself he generated another self, with whom was produced the whole definition of the essence of him who generated him. What, then, we learn in the case of human nature by means of the inferential guidance afforded to us by the definition, this I think we ought to take for our guidance also to the pure apprehension of the Divine doctrines. For when we have shaken off from the Divine and exalted doctrines all carnal and material notions, we shall be most surely led by the remaining conception, when it is purged of such ideas, to the lofty and unapproachable heights. It is confessed even by our adversaries that God, Who is over all, both is and is called the Father of the Only-begotten, and they moreover give to the Only-begotten God, Who is of the Father, the name of "begotten," by reason of His being generated. Since then among men the word "father" has certain significances attaching to it, from which the pure nature is alien, it behoves a man to lay aside all material conceptions which enter in by association with the carnal significance of the word "father,"' and to form in the case of the God and Father a conception befitting the Divine nature, expressive only of the reality of the relationship. Since, therefore, in the notion of a human father there is included not only all that the flesh suggests to our thoughts, but a certain notion of interval is also undoubtedly conceived with the idea of human fatherhood, it would be well, in the case of the Divine generation, to reject, together with bodily pollution, the notion of interval also, that so what properly belongs to matter may be completely purged away, and the transcendent generation may be clear, not only from the idea of passion, but from that of interval. Now he who says that God is a Father will unite with the thought that God is, the further thought that He is something: for that which has its being from some beginning, certainly also derives from something the beginning of its being, whatever it is: but He in Whose case being had no beginning, has not His beginning from anything, even although we contemplate in Him some other attribute than simple existence. Well, God is a Father. It follows that He is what He is from eternity: for He did not become, but is a Father: for in God that which was, both is and will be. On the other hand, if He once was not anything, then He neither is nor will be that thing: for He is not believed to be the Father of a Being such that it may be piously asserted that God once existed by Himself without that Being. For the Father is the Father of Life, and Truth, and Wisdom, and Light, and Sanctification, and Power, and all else of a like kind that the Only-begotten is or is called. Thus when the adversaries allege that the Light "once was not," I know not to which the greater injury is done, whether to the Light, in that the Light is not, or to Him that has the Light, in that He has not the Light. So also with Life and Truth and Power, and all the other characters in which the Only-begotten fills the Father's bosom, being all things in His own fulness. For the absurdity will be equal either way, and the impiety against the Father will equal the blasphemy against the Son: for in saying that the Lord "once was not," you will not merely assert the non-existence of Power, but you will be saying that the Power of God, Who is the Father of the Power, "was not." Thus the assertion made by your doctrine that the Son "once was not," establishes nothing else than a destitution of all good in the case of the Father. See to what an end these wise men's acuteness leads, how by them the word of the Lord is made good, which says, "He that despiseth Me despiseth Him that sent Me(3):" for by the very arguments by which they despise the existence at any time of the Only-begotten, they also dishonour the Father, stripping off by their doctrine from the Father's glory every good name and conception.

4. He thus shows the oneness of the Eternal Son with the Father the identity of essence and the community of nature (wherein is a natural inquiry into the production of wine), and that the terms "Son" and "product" in the naming of the Only-begotten include a like idea of relationship.

What has been said, therefore, has clearly exposed the slackness which is to be found in the knavery of our author, who, while he goes about to establish the opposition of the essence of the Only-begotten to that of the Father, by the method of calling the one "ungenerate," and the other "generate," stands convicted of playing the fool with his inconsistent arguments. For it was shown from his own words, first, that the name of "essence" means one thing, and that of "generation" another; and next, that there did not come into existence, with the Son, any new and different essence besides the essence of the Father, but that what the Father is as regards the definition of His nature, that also He is Who is of the Father, as the nature does not change into diversity in the Person of the Son, according to the truth of the argument displayed by our consideration of Adam and Abel. For as, in that instance, he that was not generated after a like sort was yet, so far as concerns the definition of essence, the same with him that was generated, and Abel's generation did not produce any change in the essence, so, in the case of these pure doctrines, the Only- begotten God did not, by His own generation, produce in Himself any change in the essence of Him Who is ungenerate (coming forth, as the Gospel says, from the Father, and being in the Father,) but is, according to the simple and homely language of the creed we profess, "Light of Light, very God of very God," the one being all that the other is, save being that other. With regard, however, to the aim for the sake of which he carries on this system-making, I think there is no need for me at present to express any opinion, whether it is audacious and dangerous, or a thing allowable and free from danger, to transform the phrases which are employed to signify the Divine nature from one to another, and to call Him Who is generated by the name of "product of generation."

I let these matters pass, that my discourse may not busy itself too much in the strife against lesser points, and neglect the greater; but I say that we ought carefully to consider the question whether the natural relation does introduce the use of these terms: for this surely Eunomius asserts, that with the affinity of the appellations there is also asserted an essential relationship. For he would not say, I presume, that the mere names themselves, apart from the sense of the things signified, have any mutual relation or affinity; but all discern the relationship or diversity of the appellations by the meanings which the words express. If, therefore, he confesses that "the Son" has a natural relation with "the Father," let us leave the appellations, and consider the force that is found in their significations, whether in their affinity we discern diversity of essence, or that which is kindred and characteristic. To say that we find diversity is downright madness. For how does something without kinship or community "preserve order," connected and conformable, in the names, where "the generated essence itself," as he says, "and the appellation of 'Son,' make such a relation of words appropriate"? If, on the other hand, he should say that these appellations signify relationship, he will necessarily appear in the character of an advocate of the community of 'essence, and as maintaining the fact that by affinity of names is signified also the connection of subjects: and this he often does in his composition without being aware of it(4). For, by the arguments wherewith he endeavours to destroy the truth, he is often himself unwittingly drawn into an advocacy of the very doctrines against which he is contending: Some such thing the history tells us concerning Saul, that once, when moved with wrath against the prophets, he was overcome by grace, and was found as one of the inspired, (the Spirit of prophecy willing, as I suppose, to instruct the apostate by means of himself,) whence the surprising nature of the event became a proverb in his after life, as the history records such an expression by way of wonder, "Is Saul also among the prophets(5)?"

At what point, then, does Eunomius assent to the truth? When he says that the Lord Himself, "being the Son of the living God, not being ashamed of His birth from the Virgin, often named Himself, in His own sayings, 'the Son of Man"'? For this phrase we also allege for proof of the community of essence, because the name of "Son" shows the community of nature to be equal in both cases. For as He is called the Son of Man by reason of the kindred of His flesh to her of whom He was born, so also He is conceived, surely, as the Son of God, by reason of the connection of His essence with that from which He has His existence, and this argument is the greatest weapon of the truth. For nothing so clearly points to Him Who is the "mediator between God and man(6)" (as the great Apostle called Him), as the name of "Son," equally applicable to either nature, Divine or Human. For the same Person is Son of God, and was made, in the Incarnation, Son of Man, that, by His communion with each, He might link together by Himself what were divided by nature. Now if, in becoming Son of Man, he were without participation in human nature, it would be logical to say that neither. does He share in the Divine essence, though He is Son of God. But if the whole compound nature of man was in Him (for He was "in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin(7)), it is surely necessary to believe that every property of the transcendent essence is also in Him, as the Word "Son" claims for Him both alike--the Human in the man, but in the God the Divine.

If then the appellations, as Eunomius says, indicate relationship, and the existence of relationship is observed in the things, not in the mere sound of the words (and by things I mean the things conceived in themselves, if it be not over-bold thus to speak of the Son and the Father), who would deny that the very champion of blasphemy has by his own action been dragged into the advocacy of orthodoxy, overthrowing by his own means his own arguments, and proclaiming community of essence in the case of the Divine doctrines? For the argument that he unwillingly casts into the scale on the side of truth does not speak falsely as regards this point,--that He would not have been called Son if the natural conception of the names did not verify this calling. For as a bench is not called the son of the workman, and no sane man would say that the builder engendered the house, and we do not say that the vineyard is the "product(8)" of the vine- dresser, but call what a man makes his work, and him who is begotten of him the son of a man, (in order, I suppose, that the proper meaning might be attached by means of the names to the respective subjects,) so too, when we are taught that the Only-begotten is Son of God, we do not by this appellation understand a creature of God, but what the word "Son" in its signification really displays. And even though wine be named by Scripture the "product(9)" of the vine, not even so will our argument with regard to the orthodox doctrine suffer by this identity of name. For we do not call wine the "product" of the oak, nor the acorn the "product" of the vine, but we use the word only if there is some natural community between the "product" and that from which it comes. For the moisture in the vine, which is drawn out from the root through the stem by the pith, is, in its natural power, water: but, as it passes in orderly sequence along the ways of nature, and flows from the lowest to the highest, it changes to the quality of wine, a change to which the rays of the sun contribute in some degree, which by their warmth draw out the moisture from the depth to the shoots, and by a proper and suitable process of ripening make the moisture wine: so that, so far as their nature is concerned, there is no difference between the moisture that exists in the vine and the wine that is produced from it. For the one form of moisture comes from the other, and one could not say that the cause of wine is anything else than the moisture which naturally exists in the shoots. But, so far as moisture is concerned, the differences of quality produce no alteration, but are found when some peculiarity discerns the moisture which is in the form of wine from that which is in the shoots, one of the two forms being accompanied by astringency, or sweetness, or sourness, so that in substance the two are the same, but are distinguished by qualitative differences. As, therefore, when we hear from Scripture that the Only-begotten God is Son of man, we learn by the kindred expressed in the name His kinship with true man, so even, if the Son be called, in the adversaries' phrase, a "product," we none the less learn, even by this name, His kinship in essence with Him that has "produced(1)" Him, by the fact that wine, which is called the "product" of the vine has been found not to be alien, as concerns the idea of moisture, from the natural power that resides in the vine. Indeed, if one were judiciously to examine the things that are said by our adversaries, they tend to our doctrine, and their sense cries out against their own fabrications, as they strive at all points to establish their "difference in essence." Yet it is by no means an easy matter to conjecture whence they were led to such conceptions. For if the appellation of "Son" does not merely signify "being from something," but by its signification presents to us specially, as Eunomius himself says, relationship in point of nature, and wine is not called the "product" of an oak, and those "products" or "generation of vipers(2)," of which the Gospel somewhere speaks, are makes and not sheep, it is clear, that in the case of the Only-begotten also, the appellation of "Son" or of "product" would not convey the meaning of relationship to something of another kind: but even if, according to our adversaries' phrase, He is called a "product of generation," and the name of "Son," as they confess, has reference to nature, the Son is surely of the essence of Him Who has generated or "produced" Him, not of that of some other among the things which we contemplate as external to that nature. And if He is truly from Him, He is not alien from all that belongs to Him from Whom He is, as in the other cases too it was shown that all that has its existence from anything by way of generation is clearly of the same kind as that from whence it came.

5. He discusses the incomprehensibility of the Divine essence, and the saying to the woman of Samaria, "Ye worship ye know not what."

Now if any one should ask for some interpretation, and description, and explanation of the Divine essence, we are not going to deny that this kind of wisdom we are unlearned, acknowledging only so much as this, that it is not possible that which is by nature infinite should be comprehended in any conception expressed by words. The fact that the Divine greatness has no limit is proclaimed by prophecy, which declares expressly that of His splendour, His glory, His holiness, "there is no end(3):" and if His surroundings have no limit, much more is He Himself in His essence, whatever it may be, comprehended by no limitation in any way. If then interpretation by way of words and names implies by its meaning some sort of comprehension of the subject, and if, on the other hand, that which is unlimited cannot be comprehended, no one could reasonably blame us for ignorance, if we are not bold in respect of what none should venture upon. For by what name can I describe the incomprehensible? by what speech can I declare the unspeakable? Accordingly, since the Deity is too excellent and lofty to be expressed in words, we have learnt to honour in silence what transcends speech and thought: and if he who "thinketh more highly than he ought to think(4)," tramples upon this cautious speech of ours making a jest of our ignorance of things incomprehensible, and recognizes a difference of unlikeness in that which is without figure, or limit, or size, or quantity (I mean in the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit), and brings forward to reproach our ignorance that phrase which is continually alleged by the disciples of deceit, " 'Ye worship ye know not what(5),' if ye know not the essence of that which ye worship," we shall follow the advice of the prophet, and not fear the reproach of fools(6), nor be led by their reviling to talk boldly of things unspeakable, making that unpractised speaker Paul our teacher in the mysteries that transcend knowledge, who is so far from thinking that the Divine nature is within the reach of human perception, that he calls even the judgments of God "unsearchable," and His ways "past finding out(7)," and affirms that the things promised to them that love Him, for their good deeds done in this life, are above comprehension so that it is not possible to behold them with the eye, nor to receive them by hearing, nor to contain them in the heart(8). Learning this, therefore, from Paul, we boldly declare that, not only are the judgments of God too high for those who try to search them out, but that the ways also that lead to the knowledge of Him are even until now untrodden and impassable. For this is what we understand that the Apostle wishes to signify, when he calls the ways that lead to the incomprehensible "past finding out," showing by the phrase that that knowledge is unattainable by human calculations, and that no one ever yet set his understanding on such a path of reasoning, or showed any trace or sign of an approach, by way of perception, to the things incomprehensible.

Learning these things, then, from the lofty words of the Apostle, we argue, by the passage quoted, in this way:--If His judgments cannot be searched out, and His ways are not traced, and the promise of His good things transcends every representation that our conjectures can frame, by how much more is His actual Godhead higher and loftier, in respect of being unspeakable and unapproachable, than those attributes which are conceived as accompanying it, whereof the divinely instructed Paul declares that there is no knowledge:--and by this means we confirm in ourselves the doctrine they deride, confessing ourselves inferior to them in the knowledge of those things which are beyond the range of knowledge, and declare that we really worship what we know. Now we know the loftiness of the glory of Him Whom we worship, by the very fact that we are not able by reasoning to comprehend in our thoughts the incomparable character of His greatness; and that saying of our Lord to the Samaritan woman, which is brought forward against us by our enemies, might more properly be addressed to them. For the words, "Ye worship ye know not what," the Lord speaks to the Samaritan woman, prejudiced as she was by corporeal ideas in her opinions concerning God: and to her the phrase "Well applies, because the Samaritans, thinking that they worship God, and at the same time supposing the Deity to be corporeally settled in place, adore Him in name only, worshipping something else, and not God. For nothing is Divine that is conceived as being circumscribed, but it belongs to the Godhead to be in all places, and to pervade all things, and not to be limited by anything: so that those who fight against Christ find the phrase they adduce against us turned into an accusation of themselves. For, as the Samaritans, supposing the Deity to be compassed round by some circumscription of place, were rebuked by the words they heard, "'Ye worship ye know not what,' and your service is profitless to you, for a God that is deemed to be settled in any place is no God,"--so one might well say to the new Samaritans, "In supposing the Deity to be limited by the absence of generation, as it were by some local limit, 'ye worship ye know not what,' doing service to Him indeed as God, but not knowing that the infinity of God exceeds all the significance and comprehension that names can furnish."

6. Thereafter he expounds the appellation of "Son," and of "product of generation," and very many varieties of" sons," of God, of men, of rams, of perdition, of light, and of day.

But our discourse has diverged too far from the subject before us, in following one the questions which arise from time to time by way of inference. Let us therefore once more resume its sequence, as I imagine that the phrase trader examination has been sufficiently shown, by what we have said, to be contradictory not only to the truth, but also to itself. For if, according to their view, the natural relation to the Father is established by the appellation of "the Son," and so with that of the "product of generation" to Him Who has begotten Him (as these men's wisdom falsely models the terms significant of the Divine nature into a verbal arrangement, according to some grammatical frivolity), no one could longer doubt that the mutual relation of the names which is established by nature is a proof of their kindred, or rather of their identity of essence. But let not our discourse merely turn about our adversaries' words, that the orthodox doctrine may not seem to gain the victory only by the weakness of those who fight against it, but appear to have an abundant supply of strength in itself. Let the adverse argument, therefore, be strengthened as much as may be by us ourselves with more energetic advocacy, that the superiority of our force may be recognized with full confidence, as we bring to the unerring test of truth those arguments also which our adversaries have omitted. He who contends on behalf of our adversaries will perhaps say that the name of "Son," or "product of generation," does not by any means establish the fact of kindred in nature. For in Scripture the term "child of wrath(9)" is used, and "son of perdition(1)," and "product of a viper(2);" and in such names Surely no community of nature is apparent. For Judas, who is called "the son of perdition," is not in his substance the same with perdition, according to what we understand by the word(3). For the signification of the "man" in Judas is one thing, and that of "perdition" is another. And the argument may be established equally from an opposite instance. For those who are called in a certain sense "children of light," and "children of the day(4)," are not the same with light and day in respect of the definition of their nature, and the stones are made Abraham's children s when they claim their kindred with him by faith and works; and those who are "led by the Spirit of God," as the Apostle says, are called "Sons of God(6)," without being the same with God in respect of nature; and one may collect many such instances from the inspired Scripture, by means of which deceit, like some image decked with the testimonies of Scripture, masquerades in the likeness of truth.

Well, what do we say to this? The divine Scripture knows how to use the word "Son" in both senses, so that in some cases such an appellation is derived from nature, in others it is adventitious and artificial. For when it speaks of "sons of men," or "sons of rams(7)," it marks the essential relation of that which is begotten to that from which it has its being: but when it speaks of "sons of power," or "children of God," it presents to us that kinship which is the result of choice. And, moreover, in the opposite sense, too, the same persons are called "sons of Eli," and "sons of Belial(8)," the appellation of "sons" being easily adapted to either idea. For when they are called "sons of Eli," they are declared to have natural relationship to him, but in being called "sons of Belial," they are reproved for the wickedness of their choice, as no longer emulating their father in their life, but addicting their own purpose to sin. In the case, then, of this lower nature of ours, and of the things with which we are concerned, by reason of human nature being equally inclined to either side (I mean, to vice and to virtue), it is in our power to become sons either of night or of day, while our nature yet remains, so far as the chief part of it is concerned, within its proper limits. For neither is he 'who by sin becomes a child of wrath alienated from his human generation, nor does he who by choice addicts himself to good reject his human origin by the refinement of his habits, but, while their nature in each case remains the same, the differences of their purpose assume the names of their relationship, according as they become either children of God by virtue, or of the opposite by vice.

But how does Eunomius, in the case of the divine doctrines at least--he who" preserves the natural order" (for I will use our author's very words), "and abides by those things which are known to us from the beginning, and does not refuse to call Him that is begotten by the name of 'product of generation,' since the generated essence itself" (as he says) "and the appellation of 'Son' makes such a relation of words appropriate",--how does he alienate the Begotten from essential kindred with Him that begat Him? For in the case of those who are called "sons" or "products" by way of reproach, or again where some praise accompanies such names, we cannot say that any one is called "a child of wrath," being at the same time actually begotten by wrath; nor again had any one the day for his mother, in a corporeal sense, that he should be called its son; but it is the difference of their will which gives occasion for names of such relationship. Here, however, Eunomius says, "we do not refuse to call the Son, seeing He is begotten, by the name of 'product of generation,' since the generated essence," he tells us, "and the appellation of ' Son,' makes such a relation of words appropriate." If, then, he confesses that such a relation of words is made appropriate by the fact that the Son is really a "product of generation," how is it opportune to assign such a rationale of names, alike to those which are used inexactly by way of metaphor, and to those where the natural relation, as Eunomius tells us, makes such a use of names appropriate? Surely such an account is true only in the case of those whose nature is a border-land between virtue and vice, where one often shares in turn opposite classes of names, becoming a child, now of light, then again of darkness, by reason of affinity to the good or to its opposite. But where contraries have no place, one could no longer say that the word "Son" is applied metaphorically, in like manner as in the case of those who by choice appropriate the title to themselves. For one could not arrive at this view, that, as a man casting off the works of darkness becomes, by his decent life, a child of light, so too the Only-begotten God received the more honourable name as the result of a change from the inferior state. For one who is a man becomes a son of God by being joined to Christ by spiritual generation: but He Who by Himself makes the man to be a son of God does not need another Son to bestow on Him the adoption of a son, but has the name also of that which He is by nature. A man himself changes himself, exchanging the old man for the new; but to what shall God be changed, so that He may receive what He has not? A man puts off himself, and puts on the Divine nature; but what does He put off, or in what does He array Himself, Who is always the same? A man becomes a son of God, receiving what he has not, and laying aside what he has; but He Who has never been in the state of vice has neither anything to receive nor anything to relinquish. Again, the man may be on the one hand truly called some one's son, when one speaks with reference to his nature; and, on the other hand, he may be so called inexactly, when the choice of his life imposes the name. But God, being One Good, in a single and uncompounded nature, looks ever the same way, and is never changed by the impulse of choice, but always wishes what He is, and is, assuredly, what He wishes: so that He is in both respects properly and truly called Son of God, since His nature contains the good, and His choice also is never severed from that which is more excellent, so that this word is employed, without inexactness, as His name. Thus there is no room for these arguments (which, in the person of our adversaries, we have been opposing to ourselves), to be brought forward by our adversaries as a demurrer to the affinity in respect of nature.

7. Then he ends the book with an exposition of the Divine and Human names of the Only-begotten, and a discussion of the terms "generate" and "ungenerate."

But as, I know not how or why, they hate and abhor the truth, they give Him indeed the name of "Son," but in order to avoid the testimony which this word would give to the community of essence, they separate the word from the sense included in the name, and concede to the Only-begotten the name of "Son" as an empty thing, vouchsafing to Him only the mere sound of the word. That what I say is true, and that I am not taking a false aim at the adversaries' mark, may be clearly learnt from the actual attacks they make upon the truth. Such are those arguments which are brought forward by them to establish their blasphemy, that we are taught by the divine Scriptures many names of the Only-begotten--a stone, an axe, a rock, a foundation, bread, a vine, a door, a way, a shepherd, a fountain, a tree, resurrection, a teacher, light, and many such names. But we may not piously use any of these names of the Lord, understanding it according to its immediate sense. For surely it would be a most absurd thing to think that what is incorporeal and immaterial, simple, and without figure, should be fashioned according to the apparent senses of these names, whatever they may be, so that when we hear of an axe we should think of a particular figure of iron, or when we hear of light, of the light in the sky, or of a vine, of that which grows by the planting of shoots, or of any one of the other names, as its ordinary use suggests to us to think; but we transfer the sense of these names to what better becomes the Divine nature, and form some other conception, and if we do designate Him thus, it is not as being any of these things, according to the definition of His nature, but as being called these things while He is conceived by means of the names employed as something else than the things themselves. But if such names are indeed truly predicated of the Only-begotten God, without including the declaration of His nature, they say that, as a consequence, neither should we admit the signification of "Son," as it is understood according to the prevailing use, as expressive of nature, but should find some sense of this word also, different from that which is ordinary and obvious. These, and others like these, are their philosophical arguments to establish that the Son is not what He is and is called. Our argument was hastening to a different goal, namely to show that Eunomius' new discourse is false and inconsistent, and argues neither with the truth nor with itself. Since, however, the arguments which we employ to attack their doctrine are brought into the discussion as a sort of support for their blasphemy(9), it may be well first briefly to discuss this point, and then to proceed to the orderly examination of his writings.

What can we say, then, to such things without relevance? That while, as they say, the names which Scripture applies to the Only-begotten are many, we assert that none of the other names is closely connected with the reference to Him that begat Him. For we do not employ the name "Stone," or "Resurrection," or "Shepherd," or "Light," or any of the rest, as we do the name "Son of the Father," with a reference to the God of all. It is possible to make a twofold division of the signification of the Divine names, as it were by a scientific rule: for to one class belongs the indication of His lofty and unspeakable glory; the other class indicates the variety of the providential dispensation: so that, as we suppose, if that which received His benefits did not exist, neither would those words be applied with respect to them(1) which indicate His bounty. All those on the other hand, that express the attributes of God, are applied suitably and properly to the Only-begotten God, apart from the objects of the dispensation. But that we may set forth this doctrine clearly, we wilt examine the names themselves. The Lord would not have been called a vine, save for the planting of those who are rooted in Him, nor a shepherd, had not the sheep of the house of Israel been lost, nor a physician, save for the sake of them that were sick, nor would He have received for Himself the rest of these names, had He not made the titles appropriate, in a manner advantageous with regard to those who were benefited by Him, by some action of His providence. What need is there to mention individual instances, and to lengthen our argument upon points that are acknowledged? On the other hand, He is certainly called "Son," and "Right Hand," and "Only-begotten," and "Word," and "Wisdom," and "Power," and all other such relative names, as being named together with the Father in a certain relative conjunction. For He is called the "Power of God," and the "Right Hand of God," and the "Wisdom of God," and the "Son and Only-begotten of the Father," and the "Word with God," and so of the rest. Thus, it follows from what we have stated, that in each of the names we are to contemplate some suitable sense appropriate to the subject, so that we may not miss the right understanding of them, and go astray from the doctrine of godliness. As, then, we transfer each of the other terms to that sense in which they may be applied to God, and reject in their case the immediate sense, so as not to understand material light, or a trodden way, or the bread which is produced by husbandry, or the word that is expressed by speech, but, instead of these, all those thoughts which present to us the magnitude of the power of the Word of God,--so, if one were to reject the ordinary and natural sense of the word "Son," by which we learn that He is of the same essence as Him that begat Him, he will of course transfer the name to some more divine interpretation. For since the change to the more glorious meaning which has been made in each of the other terms has adapted them to set forth the Divine power, it surely follows that the significance of this name also should be transferred to what is loftier. But what more Divine sense could we find in the appellation of "Son," if we were to reject, according to Our adversaries' view, the natural relation to Him that begat Him? I presume no one is so daring in impiety as to think that, in speech concerning the Divine nature, what is humble and mean is more appropriate than what is lofty and great. If they can discover, therefore, any sense of more exalted character than this, so that to be of the nature of the Father seems a thing unworthy to conceive of the Only-begotten, let them tell us whether they know, in their secret wisdom, anything more exalted than the nature of the Father, that, in raising the Only-begotten God to this level, they should lift Him also above His relation to the Father. But if the majesty of the Divine nature transcends all height, and excels every power that calls forth our wonder, what idea remains that can carry the meaning of the name "Son" to something greater still? Since it is acknowledged, therefore, that every significant phrase employed of the Only-begotten, even if the name be derived from the ordinary use of our lower life, is properly applied to Him with a difference of sense in the direction of greater majesty, and if it is shown that we can find no more noble conception of the title "Son" than that which presents to us the reality of His relationship to Him that begat Him, I think that we need spend no more time on this topic, as our argument has sufficiently shown that it is not proper to interpret the title of "Son" in like manner with the other names.

But we must bring back our enquiry once more to the book. It does not become the same persons "not to refuse" (for I will use their own words) "to call Him that is generated a ' product of generation,' since both the generated essence itself and the appellation of Son make such a relation of words appropriate," and again to change the names which naturally belong to Him into metaphorical interpretations: so that one of two things has befallen them,--either their first attack has failed, and it is in vain that they fly to "natural order" to establish the necessity of calling Him that is generated a "product of generation"; or, if this argument holds good, they will find their second argument brought to nought by what they have already established. For the person who is called a "product of generation" because He is generated, cannot, for the very same reason, be possibly called a "product of making," or a "product of creation." For the sense of the several terms differs very widely, and one who uses his phrases advisedly ought to employ words with due regard to the subject, that we may not, by improperly interchanging the sense of our phrases, fall into any confusion of ideas. Hence we call that which is wrought out by a craft the work of the craftsman, and call him who is begotten by a man that man's son; and no sane person would call the work a son, or the son a work; for that is the language of one who confuses and obscures the true sense by an erroneous use of names. It follows that we must truly affirm of the Only-begotten one of these two things,--if He is a Son, that He is not to be called a "product of creation," and if He is created, that He is alien from the appellation of "Son(2)," just as heaven and sea and earth, and all individual things, being things created, do not assume the name of "Son." But since Eunomius bears witness that the Only-begotten God is begotten (and the evidence of enemies is of aditional value for establishing the truth), he surely testifies also, by saying that He is begotten, to the fact that He is not created. Enough, however, on these points: for though many arguments crowd upon us, we will be content, lest their number lead to disproportion, with those we have already adduced on the subject before us.


1. The fourth book discusses the account of the nature of the "product of generation," and of the passionless generation of the Only-begotten, and the text, "In the beginning was the Word," and the birth of the Virgin.

IT is, perhaps, time to examine in our discourse that account of the nature of the "product of generation" which is the subject of his ridiculous philosophizing. He says, then (I will repeat word for word his beautifully composed argument against the truth):--"Who is so indifferent and inattentive to the nature of things as not to know, that of all bodies which are on earth, in their generating and being generated, in their activity and passivity, those which generate are found on examination to communicate their own essence, and those which are generated naturally receive the same, inasmuch as the material cause and the supply which flows in from without are common to both; and the things begotten are generated by passion, and those which beget, naturally have an action which is not pure, by reason of their nature being linked with passions of all kinds?" See in what fitting style he discusses in his speculation the pro-temporal generation of the Word of God that was in the beginning! he who closely examines the nature of things, bodies on the earth, and material causes, and passion of things generating and generated, and all the rest of it,--at which any man of understanding would blush, even were it said of ourselves, if it were our nature, subject as it is to passion, which is thus exposed to scorn by his words. Yet such is our author's brilliant enquiry into nature with regard to the Only-begotten God. Let us lay aside complaints, however, (for what will sighing do to help us to overthrow the malice of our enemy?) and make generally known, as best we may, the sense of what we have quoted--concerning what sort of "product" the speculation was proposed,--that which exists according to the flesh, or that which is to be contemplated in the Only-begotten God.

As the speculation is two-fold, concerning that life which is Divine, simple, and immaterial, and concerning that existence which is material and subject to passion, and as the word "generation" is used of both, we must needs make our distinction sharp and clear, lest the ambiguity of the term "generation" should in any way pervert the truth. Since, then, the entrance into being through the flesh is material, and is promoted by passion, while that which is bodiless, impalpable, without form, and free from any material commixture, is alien from every condition that admits of passion, it is proper to consider about what sort of generation we are enquiring-- that which is pure and Divine, or that which is subject to passion and pollution. Now, no one, I suppose, would deny that with regard to the Only- begotten God, it is pre-temporal existence that is proposed for the consideration s of Eunomius' discourse. Why, then, does he linger over this account of corporeal nature, defiling our nature by the loathsome presentment of his argument, and setting forth openly the passions that gather round human generation, while he deserts the subject. set before him? for it was not about this animal generation, that is accomplished by means of the flesh, that we had any need to learn. Who is so foolish, when he looks on himself, and considers human nature in himself, as to seek another interpreter of his own nature, and to need to be told all the unavoidable passions which are included in the thought of bodily generation--that he who begets is affected in one way, that which is begotten in another--so that the man should learn from this instruction that he himself begets by means of passion, and that passion was the beginning of his own generation? For it is all the same whether these things are passed over or spoken, and whether one publishes these secrets at length, or keeps hidden in silence things that should be left unsaid, we are not ignorant of the fact that our nature progresses by way of passion. But what we are seeking is that a clear account should be given of the exalted and unspeakable existence of the Only-begotten, whereby He is believed to be of the Father.

Now, while this is the enquiry set before him, our new theologian enriches his discourse with "flowing," and "passion," and "material cause," and some "action" which "is not pure" from pollution, and all other phrases of this kind(4). I know not under what influence it is that he who says, in the superiority of his wisdom, that nothing incomprehensible is left beyond his own knowledge, and promises to explain the unspeakable generation of the Son, leaves the question before him, and plunges like an eel into the slimy mud of his arguments, after the fashion of that Nicodemus who came by night, who, when our Lord was teaching him of the birth from above, rushed in thought to the hollow of the womb, and raised a doubt how one could enter a second time into the womb, with the words, "How can these things be?(5)" thinking that he would prove the spiritual birth impossible, by the fact that an old man could not again be born within his mother's bowels. But the Lord corrects his erroneous idea, saying that the properties of the flesh and the spirit are distinct. Let Eunomius also, if he will, correct himself by the like reflection. For he who ponders on the truth ought, I imagine, to contemplate his subject according to its own properties, not to slander the immaterial by a charge against things material. For if a man, or a bull, or any other of those things which are generated by the flesh, is not free from passion in generating or being generated, what has this to do with that Nature which is without passion and without corruption? The fact that we are mortal is no objection to the immortality of the Only- begotten, nor does men's propensity to vice render doubtful the immutability that is found in the Divine Nature, nor is any other of our proper attributes transferred to God; but the peculiar nature of the human and the Divine life is separated, and without common ground, and their distinguishing properties stand entirely apart, so that those of the latter are not apprehended in the former, nor, conversely, those of the former in the latter.

How comes it, therefore, that Eunomius, when the Divine generation is the subject for discourse, leaves his subject, and discusses at length the things of earth, when on this matter we have no dispute with him? Surely our craftsman's aim is clear,--that by the slanderous insinuation of passion he may raise an objection to the generation of the Lord. And here I pass by the blasphemous nature of his view, and admire the man for his acuteness,--how mindful he is of his own zealous endeavour, who, having by his previous statements established the theory that the Son must be, and must be called, a "product of generation," now contends for the view that we ought not to entertain regarding Him the conception Of generation. For, if all generation, as this author imagines, has linked with it the condition of passion, we are hereby absolutely compelled to admit that what is foreign to passion is alien also from generation: for if these things, passion and generation, are considered as conjoined, He that has no share in the one would not have any participation in the other. How then does he call Him a "product" by reason of His generation, of Whom he tries to show by the arguments he now uses, that He was not generated? and for what cause does he fight against our master(6), who counsels us in matters of Divine doctrine not to presume in name-making, but to confess that He is generated without transforming this conception into the formula of a name, so as to call Him Who is generated "a product of generation," as this term is properly applied in Scripture to things inanimate, or to those which are mentioned "as a figure of wickedness(7)"? When we speak of the propriety of avoiding the use of the term "product," he prepares for action that invincible rhetoric of his, and takes also to support him his frigid grammatical phraseology, and by his skilful misuse of names, or equivocation, or whatever one may properly call his processes--by these means, I say, he brings his syllogisms to their conclusion, "not refusing to call Him Who is begotten by the name of 'product of generation.'" Then, as soon as we admit the term, and proceed to examine the conception involved in the name, on the theory that thereby is vindicated the community of essence, he again retracts his own words, and contends for the view that the "product of generation" is not generated, raising an objection by his foul account of bodily generation, against the pure and Divine and passionless generation of the Son, on the ground that it is not possible that the two things, the true relationship to the Father, and exemption of His nature from passion, should be found to coincide in God, but that, if there were no passion, there would be no generation, and that, if one should acknowledge the true relationship, he would thereby, in admitting generation, certainly admit passion also.

Not thus speaks the sublime John, not thus that voice of thunder which proclaims the mystery of the Theology, who both names Him Son of God and purges his proclamation from every idea of passion. For behold how in the very beginning of his Gospel he prepares our ears, how great forethought is shown by the teacher that none of his hearers should fall into low ideas on the subject, slipping by ignorance into any incongruous conceptions. For in order to lead the untrained hearing as far away as possible from passion, he does not speak in his opening words of "Son," or" Father," or "generation," that no one should either, on hearing first of all of a "Father," be hurried on to the obvious signification of the word, or, on learning the proclamation of a "Son," should understand that name in the ordinary sense, or stumble, as at a "stone of stumbling(8)," at the word "generation"; but instead of "the Father," he speaks of "the Beginning": instead of "was begotten," he says "was": and instead of "the Son," he says "the Word": and declares "In the Beginning was the Word(9)." What passion, pray, is to be found in these words, "beginning," and "was," and "Word"? Is "the beginning" passion? does "was" imply passion? does "the Word" exist by means of passion? Or are we to say, that as passion is not to be found in the terms used, so neither is affinity expressed by the proclamation? Yet how could the Word's community of essence, and real relationship, and co eternity with the Beginning, be more strongly shown by other words than by these? For he does not say, "Of the Beginning was begotten the Word," that he may not separate the Word from the Beginning by any conception of extension in time, but he proclaims together with the Beginning Him also Who was in the Beginning, making the word "was" common to the Beginning and to the Word, that the Word may not linger after the Beginning, but may, by entering in together with the faith as to the Beginning, by its proclamation forestall our hearing, before this admits the Beginning itself in isolation. Then he declares, "And the Word was with God." Once more the Evangelist fears for our untrained state, once more he dreads our childish and untaught condition: he does not yet entrust to our ears the appellation of "Father," lest any of the more carnally minded, learning of "the Father," may be led by his understanding to imagine also by consequence a mother. Neither does he yet name in his proclamation the Son; for he still suspects our customary tendency to the lower nature, and fears lest any, hearing of the Son, should humanize the Godhead by an idea of passion. For this reason, resuming his proclamation, he again calls him "the Word," making this the account of His nature to thee in thine unbelief. For as thy word proceeds from thy mind, without requiring the intervention of passion, so here also, in hearing of the Word, thou shalt conceive that which is from something, and shalt not conceive passion. Hence, once more resuming his proclamation, he says, "And the Word was with God." O, how does he make the Word commensurate with God! rather, how does he extend the infinite in comparison with the infinite! "The Word was with God"--the whole being of the Word, assuredly, with the whole being of God. Therefore, as great as God is, so great, clearly, is the Word also that is with Him; so that if God is limited, then will the Word also, surely, be subject to limitation. But if the infinity of God exceeds limit, neither is the Word that is contemplated with Him comprehended by limits and measures. For no one would deny that the Word is contemplated together with the entire Godhead of the Father, so that he should make one part of the Godhead appear to be in the Word, and another destitute of the Word. Once more the spiritual voice of John speaks, once more the Evangelist in his proclamation takes tender care for the hearing of those who are in childhood: not yet have we so much grown by the hearing of his first words as to hear of "the Son," and yet remain firm without being moved from our footing by the influence of the wonted sense. Therefore our herald, crying once more aloud, still proclaims in his third utterance "the Word," and not "the Son," saying, "And the Word was God." First he declared wherein He was, then with whom He was, and now he says what He is, completing, by his third repetition, the object of his proclamation. For he says, "It is no Word of those that are readily understood, that I declare to you, but God under the designation of the Word." For this Word, that was in the Beginning, and was with God, was not anything else besides God, but was also Himself God. And forthwith the herald, reaching the full height of his lofty speech, declares that this God Whom his proclamation sets forth is He by Whom all things were made, and is life, and the light of men, and the true light that shineth in darkness, yet is not obscured by the darkness, sojourning with His own, yet not received by His own: and being made flesh, and tabernacling, by means of the flesh, in man's nature. And when he has first gone through this number and variety of statements, he then names the Father and the Only- begotten, when there can be no danger that what has been purified by so many precautions should be allowed, in consequence of the sense of the word "Father," to Sink down to any meaning tainted with pollution, for, "we beheld His glory," he says, "the glory as of the Only-begotten of the Father."

Repeat, then, Eunomius, repeat this clever objection of yours to the Evangelist: "How dost thou give the name of 'Father' in thy discourse, how that of Only-begotten, seeing that all bodily generation is operated by passion?" Surely truth answers you on his behalf, that the mystery of theology is one thing, and the physiology of unstable bodies is another. Wide is the interval by which they are fenced off one from the other. Why do you join together in your argument what cannot blend? how do you defile the purity of the Divine generation by your foul discourse? how do you make systems for the incorporeal by the passions that affect the body? Cease to draw your account of the nature of things above from those that are below. I proclaim the Lord as the Son of God, because the gospel from heaven, given-through the bright cloud, thus proclaimed Him; for "This," He saith, "is My beloved Son(1)." Yet, though I was taught that He is the Son, I was not dragged down by the name to the earthly significance of "Son," but I both know that He is from the Father and do not know that He is from passion. And this, moreover, I will add to what has been said, that I know even a bodily generation which is pure from passion, so that even on this point Eunomius' physiology of bodily generation is proved false, if, that is to say, a bodily birth can be found which does not admit passion. Tell me, was the Word made flesh, or not? You would not, I presume, say that It was not. It was so made, then, and there is none who denies it. How then was it that "God was manifested in the flesh(2)"? "By birth," of course you will say. But what sort of birth do you speak of? Surely it is clear that you speak of that from the virginity, and that "that which was conceived in her was of the Holy Ghost(3)," and that "the days were accomplished that she should be delivered, and she brought forth(4)," and none the less was her purity preserved in her child-bearing. You believe, then, that that birth which took place from a woman was pure from passion, if you do believe, but you refuse to admit the Divine and incorruptible generation from the Father, that you may avoid the idea of passion in generation. But I know well that it is not passion he seeks to avoid in his doctrine, for that he does not discern at all in the Divine and incorruptible nature; but to the end that the Maker of all creation may be accounted a part of creation, he builds up these arguments in order to a denial of the Only- begotten God, and uses his pretended caution about passion to help him in his task.

2. He convicts Eunomius of having used of the Only-begotten terms applicable to the existence of the earth, and thus shows that his intention is to prove the Son to be a being, mutable and created.

And this he shows very plainly by his contention against our arguments, where he says that "the essence of the Son came into being from the Father, not put forth by way of extension, not separated from its conjunction with Him that generated Him by flux or division, not perfected by way of growth, not transformed by way of change, but obtaining existence by the mere will of the Generator." Why, what man whose mental senses are not closed up is left in ignorance by this utterance that by these statements the Son is being represented by Eunomius as a part of the creation? What hinders us from saying all this word for word as it stands, about every single one of the things we contemplate in creation? Let us apply, if you will, the definition to any of the things that appear in creation, and if it does not admit the same sequence, we will condemn ourselves for having examined the definition slightingly, and not with the care that befits the truth. Let us exchange, then, the name of the Son, and so read the definition word by word. We say that the essence of the earth came into being from the Father, not separated by way of extension or division from its conjunction with Him Who generated it, nor perfected by way of growth, nor put forth by way of change, but obtaining existence by the mere will of Him Who generated it. Is there anything in what we have said that does not apply to the existence of the earth? I think no one would say so: for God did not put forth the earth by being extended, nor bring its essence into existence by flowing or by dissevering Himself from conjunction with Himself, nor did He bring it by means of gradual growth from being small to completeness of magnitude, nor was He fashioned into the form of earth by undergoing mutation or alteration, but His will sufficed Him for the existence of all things that were made: "He spake and they were generated(5)," so that even the name of "generation" does not fail to accord with the existence of the earth. Now if these things may be truly said of the parts of the universe, what doubt is still left as to our adversaries' doctrine, that while, so far as words go, they call Him "Son," they represent Him as being one of the things that came into existence by creation, set before the rest only in precedence of order? just as you might say about the trade of a smith, that from it come all things that are wrought out of iron; but that the instrument of the tongs and hammer, by which the iron is fashioned for use, existed before the making of the rest; yet, while this has precedence of the rest, there is not on that account any difference in respect of matter between the instrument that fashions and the iron that is shaped by the instrument, (for both one and the other are iron,) but the one form is earlier than the other. Such is the theology of heresy touching the Son,--to imagine that there is no difference between the Lord Himself and the things that were made by Him, save the difference in respect of order.

Who that is in any sense classed among Christians admits that the definition(6) of the essence of the parts of the world, and of Him Who made the world, is the same? For my own part I shudder at the blasphemy, knowing that where the definition of things is the same neither is their nature different. For as the definition of the essence of Peter and John and other men is common and their nature is one, in the same way, if the Lord were in respect of nature even as the parts of the world, they must acknowledge that He is also subject to those things, whatever they may be, which they perceive in them. Now the world does not last for ever: thus, according to them, the Lord also will pass away with the heaven and the earth, if, as they say, He is of the same kind with the world. If on the other hand He is confessed to be eternal, we must needs suppose that the world too is not without some part in the Divine nature, if, as they say, it corresponds with the Only-begotten in the matter of creation. You see where this fine process of inference makes the argument tend, like a stone broken off from a mountain ridge and rushing down-hill by its own weight. For either the elements of the world must be Divine, according to the foolish belief of the Greeks, or the Son must not be worshipped. Let us consider it thus. We say that the creation, both what is perceived by the mind, and that which is of a nature to be perceived by sense, came into being from nothing: this they declare also of the Lord. We say that all things that have been made consist by the will of God: this they tell us also of the Only-begotten. We believe that neither the angelic creation nor the mundane is of the essence of Him that made it: and they make Him also alien from the essence of the Father. We confess that all things serve Him that made them: this view they also hold of the Only-begotten. Therefore, of necessity, whatever else it may be that they conceive of the creation, all these attributes they will also attach to the Only-begotten: and whatever they believe of Him, this they will also conceive of the creation: so that, if they confess the Lord as God, they will also deify the rest of the creation. On the other hand, if they define these things to be without share in the Divine nature, they will not reject the same conception touching the Only-begotten also. Moreover no sane man asserts Godhead of the creation. Then neither I do not utter the rest, lest I lend my tongue to the blasphemy of the enemy. Let those say what consequence follows, whose mouth is well trained in blasphemy. But their doctrine is evident even if they hold their peace. For one of two things must necessarily happen:--either they will depose the Only-begotten God, so that with them He will no more either be, or be called so: or, if they assert Godhead of Him, they will equally assert it of all creation:--or, (for this is still left to them,) they will shun the impiety that appears on either side, and take refuge in the orthodox doctrine, and will assuredly agree with us that He is not created, that they may confess Him to be truly God.

What need is there to take time to recount all the other blasphemies that underlie his doctrine, starting from this beginning? For by what we have quoted, one who considers the inference to be drawn will understand that the father of falsehood, the maker of death, the inventor of wickedness, being created in a nature intellectual and incorporeal, was not by that nature hindered from becoming what he is by way of change. For the mutability of essence, moved either way at will, involves a capacity of nature that follows the impulse of determination, so as to become that to which its determination leads it. Accordingly they will define the Lord as being capable even of contrary dispositions, drawing Him down as it were to a rank equal with the angels, by the conception of creation(7). But let them listen to the great voice of Paul. Why is it that he says that He alone has been called Son? Because He is not of the nature of angels, but of that which is more excellent. "For unto which of the angels said He at any time, 'Thou art My Son, This day have I begotten Thee'? and when again He bringeth the first-begotten into the world He saith, 'And let all the angels of God worship Him.' And of the angels He saith, 'Who maketh His angels spirits, and His ministers a flame of fire': but of the Son He saith, 'Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever; a sceptre of righteousness is the sceptre of Thy kingdom(8),'" and all else that the prophecy recites together with these words in declaring His Godhead. And he adds also from another Psalm the appropriate words, "Thou, Lord, in the beginning hast laid the foundation of the earth, and the heavens are the works of Thine hands," and the rest, as far as "But Thou art the same, and Thy years shall not fail(9)," whereby he describes the immutability and eternity of His nature. If, then, the Godhead of the Only-begotten is as far above the angelic nature as a master is superior to his slaves, how do they make common either with the sensible creation Him Who is Lord of the creation, or with the nature of the angels Him Who is worshipped by them(1), by detailing, concerning the manner of His existence, statements which will properly apply to the individual things we contemplate in creation, even as we already showed the account given by heresy, touching the Lord, to be closely and appropriately applicable to the making of the earth?

3. He then again admirably discussed the term prwto'tokos as it is four times employed Apostle.

But that the readers of our work may find no ambiguity left of such a kind as to afford any support to the heretical doctrines, it may be worth while to add to the passages examined by us this point also from Holy Scripture. They will perhaps raise a question from the very apostolic writings which we quoted: "How could He be called 'the first-born of creation(2)' if He were not what creation is? for every first-born is the first-born not of another kind, but of its own as Reuben, having precedence in respect of birth of those who are counted after him, was the first-born, a man the first-born of men; and many others are called the first-born of the brothers who are reckoned with them." They say then, "We assert that He Who is 'the first-born of creation' is of that same essence which we consider the essence of all creation. Now if the whole creation is of one essence with the Father of all, we will not deny that the first born of creation is this also: but if the God of all differs in essence from the creation, we must of necessity say that neither has the first-born of creation community in essence with God." The structure of this objection is not. I think, at all less imposing in the form in which it is alleged by us, than in the form in which it would probably be brought against us by our adversaries. But what we ought to know as regards this point shall now, so far as we are able, be plainly set forth in our discourse.

Four times the name of "first-born" or "first-begotten" is used by the Apostle in all his writings: but he has made mention of the name in different senses and not in the same manner. For now he speaks of "the first-born of all creation(3)," and again of "the first-born among many brethren(4)," then of "the first-born from the dead(5);" and in the Epistle to the Hebrews the name of "first-begotten" is absolute, being mentioned by itself: for he speaks thus, "When again He bringeth the first-begotten into the world, He saith, 'Let all the angels worship Him(6).'" As these passages are thus distinct, it may be well to interpret each of them separately by itself, how He is the "first-born of creation," how "among many brethren," how "from the dead," and how, spoken of by Himself apart from each of these, when He is again brought into the world, He is worshipped by all His angels. Let us begin then, if you will, our survey of the passages before us with the last-mentioned.

"When again He bringeth in," he says, "the first-begotten into the world." The addition of "again" shows, by the force of this word, that this event happens not for the first time: for we use tiffs word of the repetition of things which have once happened. He signifies, therefore, by the phrase, the dread appearing of the Judge at the end of the ages, when He is seen no more in the form of a servant, but seated in glory upon the throne of His kingdom, and worshipped by all the angels that are around Him. Therefore He Who once entered into the world, becoming the first-born "from the dead," and "of His brethren," and "of all creation," does not, when He comes again into the world as He that judges the world in righteousness(7), as the prophecy saith, east off the name of the first- begotten, which He once received for our sakes; but as at the name of Jesus, which is above every name, every knee bows(8), so also the company of all the angels worships Him Who comes in the name of the First-begotten, in their rejoicing over the restoration of men, wherewith, by becoming the first-born among us, He restored us again to the grace which we had at the beginning(9). For since there is joy among the angels over those who are rescued from sin, (because until now that creation groaneth and travaileth in pain at the vanity that affects us(1), judging our perdition to be their own loss,) when that manifestation of the sons of God takes place which they look for and expect, and when the sheep is brought safe to the hundred above, (and we surely--humanity that is to say--are that sheep which the Good Shepherd saved by becoming the first begotten(2)) then especially will they offer, in their intense thanksgiving on our behalf, their worship to God, Who by being first-begotten restored him that bad wandered from his Father's home.

Now that we have arrived at the understanding of these words, no one could any longer hesitate as to the other passages, for what reason He is the first-born, either "of the dead," or "of the creation," or "among many brethren." For all these passages refer to the same point, although each of them sets forth some special conception. He is the first-born from the dead, Who first by Himself loosed the pains of death(3), that He might also make that birth of the resurrection a way for all men(4). Again, He becomes "the first-born among many brethren," Who is born before us by the new birth of regeneration in water, for the travail whereof the hovering of the Dove was the midwife, whereby He makes those who share with Him in the like birth to be His own brethren, and becomes the first-born of those who after Him are born of water and of the Spirit(5): and to speak briefly, as there are in us three births, whereby human nature is quickened, one of the body, another in the sacrament of regeneration, another by that resurrection of the dead for which we look, He is first-born in all three:--of the twofold regeneration which is wrought by two (by baptism and by the resurrection), by being Himself the leader in each of them; while it, the flesh He is first-born, as having first and alone devised in His own case that birth unknown to nature, which no one in the many generations of men had originated. If these passages, then, have been rightly understood, neither will the signification of the "creation," of which He is first-born, be unknown to as. For we recognize a twofold creation of our nature, the first that whereby we were made, the second that whereby we were made anew. But there would have been no need of the second creation had we not made the first unavailing by our disobedience. Accordingly, when the first creation had waxed old and vanished away, it was needful that there should be a new creation in Christ, (as the Apostle says, who asserts that we should no longer see in the second creation any trace of that which has waxed old, saying, "Having put off the old man with his deeds and his lusts, put on the new man which is created according to God(6)," and "If any man be in Christ," he says, "he is a new creature: the old things are passed away, behold all things are become new(7):")--for the maker of human nature at the first and afterwards is one and the same. Then He took dust from the earth and formed man: again, He took dust from the Virgin, and did not merely form man, but formed man about Himself: then, He created; afterwards, He was created: then, the Word made flesh; afterwards, the Word became flesh, that He might change our flesh to spirit, by being made partaker with us in flesh and blood. Of this new creation therefore in Christ, which He Himself began, He was called the first-born, being the first-fruits of all, both of those begotten into life, and of those quickened by resurrection of the dead, "that He might be Lord both of the dead and of the living(8)," and might sanctify the whole lump(9) by means of its first-fruits in Himself. Now that the character of "first-born" does not apply to the Son in respect of His pre temporal existence the appellation of "Only-begotten" testifies. For he who is truly only-begotten has no brethren, for bow could any one be only-begotten if numbered among brethren? but as He is called God and man, Son of God and Son of man,--for He has the form of God and the form of a servant(1), being some things according to His supreme nature, becoming other things in His dispensation of love to man,--so too, being the Only-begotten God, He becomes the first- born of all creation,--the Only-begotten, He that is in the bosom of the Father, yet, among the e who are saved by the new creation, both becoming and being called the first born of the creation. But if, as heresy will have it, He is called first-born because He was made before the rest of the creation, the name does not agree with what they maintain concerning the Only-begotten God. For they do not say this,--that the Son and the universe were from the Father in like manner,--but they say, that the Only-begotten God was made by the Father, and that all else was made by the Only- begotten. Therefore on the same ground on which, while they hold that the Son was created, they call God the Father of the created Being, on the same ground, while they say that all things were made by the Only-begotten God, they give Him the name not of the "first-born" of the things that were made by Him, but more properly of their "Father," as the same relation existing in both cases towards the things created, logically gives rise to the same appellation. For if God, Who is over all, is not properly called the "First-born," but the Father of the Being He Himself created, the Only- begotten God will surely also be called, by the same reasoning, the "father," and not properly the "first-born" of His own creatures, so that the appellation of "first-born" will be altogether improper and superfluous, having no place in the heretical conception,

4. He proceeds again to discuss the impassibility of the Lord's generation; and the folly of Eunomius, who says that the generated essence involves the appellation of Son, and again, forgetting this, denies the relation of the Son to the Father: and herein he speaks of Circe and of the mandrake poison.

We must, however, return to those who connect passion with the Divine generation, and on this account deny that the Lord is truly begotten, in order to avoid the conception of passion. To say that passion is absolutely linked with generation, and that on this account, in order that the Divine nature may continue in purity beyond the reach of passion, we ought to consider that the Son is alien to the idea of generation, may perhaps appear reasonable in the eyes of those who are easily deceived, but those who are instructed in the Divine mysteries(2) have an answer ready to band, based upon admitted facts. For who knows not that it is generation that leads us back to the true and blessed life, not being the same with that which takes place "of blood and of the will of the flesh(3)," in which are flux and change, and gradual growth to perfection, and all else that we observe in our earthly generation: but the other kind is believed to be from God, and heavenly, and, as the Gospel says, "from above(4)," which excludes the passions of flesh and blood? I presume that they both admit the existence of this generation, and find no passion in it. Therefore not all generation is naturally connected with passion, but the material generation is subject to passion, the immaterial pure from passion. What constrains him then to attribute to the incorruptible generation of the Son what properly belongs to the flesh, and, by ridiculing the lower form of generation with his unseemly physiology, to exclude the Son from affinity with the Father? For if, even in our own case, it is generation that is the beginning of either life,--that generation which is through the flesh of a life of passion, that which is spiritual of a life of purity, (and no one who is in any sense numbered among Christians would contradict this statement,)--how is it allowable to entertain the idea of passion in thinking of generation as it concerns the incorruptible Nature? Let us moreover examine this point in addition to those we have mentioned. If they disbelieve the passionless character of the Divine generation on the ground of the passion that affects the flesh, let them also, from the same tokens, (those, I mean, to be found in ourselves,) refuse to believe that God acts as a Maker without passion. For if they judge of the Godhead by comparison of our own conditions, they must not confess that God either begets or creates; for neither of these operations is exercised by ourselves without passion. Let them therefore either separate from the Divine nature both creation and generation, that they may guard the impassibility of God on either side, and let them, that the Father may be kept safely beyond the range of passion, neither growing weary by creation, nor being defiled by generation, entirely reject front their doctrine the belief in the Only- begotten, or, if they agree(5) that the one activity is exercised by the Divine power without passion, let them not quarrel about the other: for if He creates without labour or matter, He surely also begets without labour or flux.

And here once more I have in this argument the support of Eunomius. I will state his nonsense concisely and briefly, epitomizing his whole meaning. That men do not make materials for us, but only by their art add form to matter,--this is the drift of what he says in the course of a great quantity of nonsensical language. If, then, understanding conception and formation to be included in the lower generation, he forbids on this ground the pure notion of generation, by consequence, on the same reasoning, since earthly creation is busied with the form, but cannot furnish matter together with the form, let him forbid us also, on this ground, to suppose that the Father is a Creator. If, on the other hand, he refuses to conceive creation in the case of God according to man's measure of power, let him also cease to slander Divine generation by human imperfections. But, that his accuracy and circumspection m argument may be more clearly established, I will again return to a small point in his statements. He asserts that "things which are respectively active and passive share one another's nature," and mentions, after bodily generation, "the work of the craftsman as displayed in materials." Now let the acute hearer mark how he here fails in his proper aim, and wanders about among whatever statements he happens to invent. He sees in things that come into being by way of the flesh the "active and passive conceived, with the same essence, the one imparting the essence, the other receiving it." Thus he knows how to discern the truth with accuracy as regards the nature of existing things, so as to separate the imparter and the receiver from the essence, and to say that each of these is distinct in himself apart from the essence. For he that receives or imparts is surely another besides that which is given or received, so that we must first conceive some one by himself, viewed in his own separate existence, and then speak of him as giving that which he has, or receiving that which he has not(6). And when he has sputtered out this argument in such a ridiculous fashion, our sage friend does not perceive that by the next step he overthrows himself once more. For he who by his art forms at his will the material before him, surely in this operation acts; and the material, in receiving its form at the hand of him who exercises the art, is passively affected: for it is not by remaining unaffected and unimpressionable that the material receives its form. If then, even in the case of things wrought by art, nothing can come into being without passivity and action concurring to produce it, how can our author think that he here abides by his own words? seeing that, in declaring community of essence to be involved in the relation of action and passion, he seems not only to attest in some sense community of essence in Him that is begotten with Him that begat Him, but also to make the whole creation of one essence(7) with its Maker, if, as he says, the active and the passive are to be defined as mutually akin in respect of nature. Thus, by the very arguments by which he establishes what he wishes, he overthrows the main object of his effort, and makes the glory of the co-essential Son more secure by his own contention. For if the fact of origination from anything shows the essence of the generator to be in the generated, and if artificial fabrication (being accomplished by means of action and passion) reduces both that which makes and that which is produced to community of essence, according to his account, our author in many places of his own writings maintains that the Lord has been begotten. Thus by the very arguments whereby he seeks to prove the Lord alien from the essence of the Father, he asserts for Him intimate connexion. For if, according to his account, separation in essence is not observed either in generation or in fabrication, then, whatever he allows the Lord to be, whether "created" or a "product of generation," he asserts, by both names alike, the affinity of essence, seeing that he makes community of nature in active and passive, in generator and generated, a part of his system.

Let us turn however to the next point of the argument. I beg my readers not to be impatient at the minuteness of examination which extends our argument to a length beyond what we would desire. For it is not any ordinary matters on which we stand in danger, so that our loss would be slight if we should hurry past any point that required more careful attention, but it is the very sum of our hope that we have at stake. For the alternative before us is, whether we should be Christians, not led astray by the destructive wiles of heresy, or whether we should be completely swept away into the conceptions of Jews or heathen. To the end, then, that we may not suffer either of these things forbidden, that we may neither agree with the doctrine of the Jews by a denial of the verily begotten Son, nor be involved in the downfall of the idolaters by the adoration of the creature, let us perforce spend some time in the discussion of these matters, and set forth the very words of Eunomius, which run thus:--

"Now as these things are thus divided, one might reasonably say that the most proper and primary essence, and that which alone exists by the operation of the Father, admits for itself the appellations of 'product of generation,' 'product of making,' and 'product of creation':" and a little further on he says, "But the Son alone, existing by the operation of the Father, possesses His nature and His relation to Him that begat Him, without community(8)." Such are his words. But let us, like men who look on at their enemies engaged in a factious struggle among themselves, consider first our adversaries' contention against themselves, and so proceed to set forth on the other side the true doctrine of godliness. "The Son alone," he says, "existing by the operation of the Father, possesses His nature and His relation to Him that begat Him, without community." But in his previous statements, he says that he "does not refuse to call Him, that is begotten a 'product of generation,' as the generated essence itself, and the appellation of Son, make such a relation of words appropriate."

The contradiction existing in these passages being thus evident, I am inclined to admire for their acuteness those who praise this doctrine. For it would be hard to say to which of his statements they could turn without finding themselves at variance with the remainder. His earlier statement represented that the generated essence, and the appellation of "Son," made such a relation of words appropriate. His present system says the contrary:--that "the Son possesses His relation to Him that begot Him without community." If they believe the first statement, they will surely not accept the second: if they incline to the latter, they will find themselves opposed to the earlier conception. Who will stay the combat? Who will mediate in this civil war? Who will bring this discord into agreement, when the very soul is divided against itself by the opposing statements, and drawn in different ways to contrary doctrines? Perhaps we may see here that dark saying of prophecy which David speaks of the Jews--"They were divided but were not pricked at heart(9)." For lo, not even when they are divided among contrariety of doctrines have they a sense of their discordancy, but they are carried about by their ears like wine-jars, borne around at the will of him who shifts them. It pleased him to say that the generated essence was closely connected with the appellation of "Son": straightway, like men asleep, they nodded assent to his remarks. He changed his statement again to the contrary one, and denies the relation of the Son to Him that begat Him: again his well-beloved friends join in assent to this also, shifting in whatever direction he chooses, as the shadows of bodies change their form by spontaneous mimicry with the motion of the advancing figure, and even if he contradicts himself, accepting that also. This is another form of the drought that Homer tells us of, not changing the bodies of those who drink its poison into the forms of brutes, but acting on their souls to produce in them a change to a state void of reason. For of those men, the tale tells that their mind was sound, while their form was changed to that of beasts, but here, while their bodies remain in their natural state, their souls are transformed to the condition of brutes. And as there the poet's tale of wonder says that those who drank the drug were changed into the forms of various beasts, at the pleasure of her who beguiled their nature, the same thing happens now also from this Circe's cup. For they who drink the deceit of sorcery from the same writing are changed to different forms of doctrine, transformed now to one, now to another. And meanwhile these very ridiculous people, according to the revised edition of the fable, are still well pleased with him who leads them to such absurdity, and stoop to father the words he scatters about, as if they were cornel fruit or acorns, running greedily like swine to the doctrines that are shed on the ground, not being naturally capable of fixing their gaze on those which are lofty and heavenly. For this reason it is that they do not see the tendency of his argument to contrary positions, but snatch without examination what comes in their way: and as they say that the bodies of men stupefied with mandrake are held in a sort of slumber and inability to move, so are the senses of these men's souls affected, being made torpid as regards the apprehension of deceit. It is certainly a terrible thing to be held in unconsciousness by hidden guile, as the result of some fallacious argument: yet where it is involuntary the misfortune is excusable: but to be brought to make trial of evil as the result of a kind of forethought and zealous desire, not in ignorance of what will befall, surpasses every extreme of misery. Surely we may well complain, when we hear that even greedy fish avoid the steel when it comes near them unbaited, and take down the hook only when hope of food decoys them to a bait: but where the evil is apparent, to go over of their own accord to this destruction is a more wretched thing than the folly of the fish: for these are led by their greediness to a destruction that is concealed from them, but the others swallow with open mouth the hook of impiety in its bareness, satisfied with destruction under the influence of some unreasoning passion. For what could be clearer than this contradiction--than to say that the same Person was begotten and is a thing created, and that something is closely connected with the name of "Son," and, again, is alien from the sense of "Son"? But enough of these matters.

5. He again shows Eunomius, constrained by truth, in the character of an advocate of the orthodox doctrine, confessing as most proper and primary, not only the essence of the Father, but the essence also of the Only begotten.

It might, however, be useful to look at the sense of the utterance of Eunomius that is set before us in orderly sequence, recurring to the beginning of his statement. For the points we have now examined were an obvious incitement to us to begin our reply with the last passage, on account of the evident character of the contradiction involved in his words.

This, then, is what Eunomius says at the beginning:- "Now, as these things are thus divided, one might reasonably say that the most proper and primary essence, and that which alone exists by the operation of the Father, admits for itself the appellations of 'product of generation,' 'product of making,' and 'product of creation.'" First, then, I would ask those who are attending to this discourse to bear in mind, that in his first composition he says that the essence of the Father also is "most proper," introducing his statement with these words, "The whole account of our teaching is completed with the supreme and most proper essence." And here he calls the essence of the Only-begotten "most proper and primary." Thus putting together Eunomius' phrases from each of his books, we shall call him himself as a witness of the community of essence, who in another place makes a declaration to this effect, that "of things which have the same appellations, the nature also is not different" in any way. For our self-contradictory friend would not indicate things differing in nature by identity of appellation, but it is surely for this reason, that the definition of essence in Father and Son is one, that he says that the one is "most proper," and that the other also is "most proper." And the general usage of men bears witness to our argument, which does not apply the term "most proper" where the name does not truly agree with the nature. For instance, we call a likeness, inexactly, "a man," but what we properly designate by this name is the animal presented to us in nature. And similarly, the language of Scripture recognizes the appellation of "god" for an idol, and for a demon, and for the belly: but here too the name has not its proper sense; and in the same way with all other cases. A man is said to have eaten food in the fancy of a dream, but we cannot call this fancy food, in the proper sense of the term. As, then, in the case of two men existing naturally, we properly call both equally by the name of man, while if any one should join an inanimate portrait in his enumeration with a real man, one might perhaps speak of him who really exists and of the likeness, as "two men," but would no longer attribute to both the proper meaning of the word, so, on the supposition that the nature of the Only- begotten was conceived as something else than the essence of the Father, our author would not have called each of the essences "most proper." For how could any one signify things differing in nature by identity of names? Surely the truth seems to be made plain even by those who fight against it, as falsehood is unable, even when expressed in the words of the enemy, utterly to prevail over truth. Hence the doctrine of orthodoxy is proclaimed by the mouth of its opponents, without their knowing what they say, as the saving Passion of the Lord for us had been foretold in the case of Caiaphas, not knowing what he said(1). If, therefore, true propriety of essence is common to both (I mean to the Father and the Son), what room is there for saying that their essences are mutually divergent? Or how is a difference by way of superior power, or greatness, or honour, contemplated in them, seeing that the "most proper "essence admits of no diminution? For that which is whatever it is imperfectly, is not that thing "most properly," be it nature, or power, or rank, or any other individual object of contemplation, so that the superiority of the Father's essence, as heresy will have it, proves the imperfection of the essence of the Son. If then it is imperfect. it is not proper; but if it is "most proper" it is also surely perfect. For it is not possible to call that which is deficient perfect. But neither is it possible, when, in comparing them, that which is perfect is set beside that which is perfect, to perceive any difference by way of excess or defect: for perfection is one in both cases, as in a rule, not showing a hollow by defect, nor a projection by excess. Thus, from these passages Eunomius' advocacy in favour of our doctrine may be sufficiently seen--I should rather say, not his earnestness on our behalf, but his conflict with himself. For he turns against himself those devices whereby he establishes our doctrines by his own arguments. Let us, however, once more follow his writings word for word, that it may be clear to all that their argument has no power for evil except the desire to do mischief.

6. He then exposes argument about the "Generate," and the "product of making," and "product of creation," and shows the impious nature of the language of Eunomius and Theognostus on the "immediate" and "undivided" character of the essence, and its "relation to its creator and maker."

Let us listen, then, to what he says. "One might reasonably say that the most proper and primary essence, and that which alone exists by the operation of the Father, admits for itself the appellations of 'product of generation,' 'product of making,' and 'product of creation.' " Who knows not that what separates the Church from heresy is this term, "product of creation," applied to the Son? Accordingly, the doctrinal difference being universally acknowledged, what would be the reasonable course for a man to take who endeavours to show that his opinions are more true than ours? Clearly, to establish his own statement, by showing, by such proofs as he could, that we ought to consider that the Lord is created. Or omitting this, should he rather lay down a law for his readers that they should speak of matters of controversy as if they were acknowledged facts? For my own part, I think he should take the former course, and perhaps all who possess any share of intelligence demand this of their opponents, that they should, to begin with, establish upon some incontrovertible basis the first principle of their argument, and so proceed to press their theory by inferences. Now our writer leaves alone the task of establishing the view that we should think He is created, and goes on to the next steps, fitting on the inferential process of his argument to this unproved assumption, being just in the condition of those men whose minds are deep in foolish desires, with their thoughts wandering upon a kingdom, or upon some other object of pursuit. They do not think how any of the things on which they set their hearts could possibly be, but they arrange and order their good fortune for themselves at their pleasure, as if it were theirs already, straying with a kind of pleasure among non-existent things. So, too, our clever author somehow or other lulls his own renowned dialectic to sleep, and before giving a demonstration of the point at issue, he tells, as if to children, the tale of this deceitful and inconsequent folly of his own doctrine, setting it forth like a story told at a drinking-party. For he says that the essence which "exists by the operation of the Father "admits the appellation of "product of generation," and of "product of making," and of "product of creation." What reasoning showed us that the Son exists by any constructive operation, and that the nature of the Father remains inoperative with regard to the Personal existence(2) of the Son? This was the very point at issue in the controversy, whether the essence of the Father begat the Son, or whether it made Him as one of the external things which accompany His nature(3). Now seeing that the Church, according to the Divine teaching, believes the Only-begotten to be verily God, and abhors the superstition of polytheism, and for this cause does not admit the difference of essences, in order that the Godheads may not, by divergence of essence, fall under the conception of number (for this is nothing else than to introduce polytheism into our life)--seeing, I say, that the Church teaches this in plain language, that the Only-begotten is essentially God, very God of the essence of the very God, how ought one who opposes her decisions to overthrow the preconceived opinion? Should he not do so by establishing the opposing statement, demonstrating the disputed point from some acknowledged principle? I think no sensible man would look for anything else than this. But our author starts from the disputed points, and takes, as though it were admitted, matter which is in controversy as a principle for the succeeding argument. If it had first been shown that the Son had His existence through some operation, what quarrel should we have with what follows, that he should say that the essence which exists through an operation admits for itself the name of "product of making"? But let the advocates of error tell us how the consequence has any force, so long as the antecedent remains unestablished. For supposing one were to grant by way of hypothesis that man is winged, there will be no question of concession about what comes next: for he who becomes winged will fly in some way or other, and lift himself up on high above the earth, soaring through the air on his wings. But we have to see how he whose nature is not aerial could become winged, and if this condition does not exist, it is vain to discuss the next point. Let our author, then, show this to begin with, that it is in vain that the Church has believed that the Only- begotten Son truly exists, not adopted by a Father falsely so called, but existing according to nature, by generation from Him Who is, not alienated from the essence of Him that begat Him. But so long as his primary proposition remains unproved, it is idle to dwell on those which are secondary. And let no one interrupt me, by saying that what we confess should also be confirmed by constructive reasoning: for it is enough for proof of our statement, that the tradition has come down to us from our fathers, handled on, like some inheritance, by succession from the apostles and the saints who came after them. They, on the other hand, who change their doctrines to this novelty, would need the support of arguments in abundance, if they were about to bring over to their views, not men light as dust, and unstable, but men of weight and steadiness: but so long as their statement is advanced without being established, and without being proved, who is so foolish and so brutish as to account the teaching of the evangelists and apostles, and of those who have successively shone like lights in the churches, of less force than this undemonstrated nonsense?

Let us further look at the most remarkable instance of our author's cleverness; how, by the abundance of his dialectic skill, he ingeniously draws over to the contrary view the more simple sort. He throws in, as an addition to the title of "product of making," and that of "product of creation," the further phrase, "product of generation," saying that the essence of the Son "admits these names for itself"; and thinks that, so long as be harangues as if he were in some gathering of topers, his knavery in dealing with doctrine will not be detected by any one. For in joining "product of generation" with "product of making," and "product of creation," he thinks that he stealthily makes away with the difference in significance between the names, by putting together what have nothing in common. These are his clever tricks of dialectic; but we mere laymen in argument(4) do not deny that, so far as voice and tongue are concerned, we are what his speech sets forth about us, but we allow also that our ears, as the prophet says, are made ready for intelligent hearing. Accordingly, we are not moved, by the conjunction of names that have nothing in common, to make a confusion between the things they signify: but even if the great Apostle names together wood, hay, stubble, gold, silver, and precious stones(5), we reckon up summarily the number of things he mentions, and yet do not fail to recognize separately the nature of each of the substances named. So here, too, when "product of generation" and "product of making" are named together, we pass from the sounds to the sense, and do not behold the same meaning in each of the names; for "product of creation" means one thing, and "product of generation" another: so that even if he tries to mingle what will not blend, the intelligent hearer will listen with discrimination, and will point out that it is an impossibility for any one nature to "admit for itself" the appellation of "product of generation," and that of "product of creation." For, if one of these were true, the other would necessarily be false, so that, if the thing were a product of creation, it would not be a product of generation, and conversely, if it were called a product of generation, it would be alienated from the title of "product of creation." Yet Eunomius tells us that the essence of the Son "admits for itself the appellations of 'product of generation,' 'product of making,' and 'product of creation'"!

Does he, by what still remains, make at all more secure this headless and rootless statement of his, in which, in its earliest stage, nothing was laid down that had any force with regard to the point he is trying to establish? or does the rest also cling to the same folly, not deriving its strength from any support it gets from argument, but setting out its exposition of blasphemy with vague details like the recital of dreams? He says (and this he subjoins to what I have already quoted)--" Having its generation without intervention, and preserving indivisible its relation to its Generator, Maker, and Creator." Well, if we were to leave alone the absence of intervention and of division, and look at the meaning of the words as it stands by itself, we shall find that everywhere his absurd teaching is cast upon the ears of those whom he deceives, without corroboration from a single argument. "Its Generator, and Maker, and Creator," he says. These names, though they seem to be three, include the sense of but two concepts, since two of the words are equivalent in meaning. For to make is the same as to create, but generation is another thing distinct from those spoken of. Now, seeing that the result of the signification of the words is to divide the ordinary apprehension of men into different ideas, what argument demonstrates to us that making is the same thing with generation, to the end that we may accommodate the one essence to this difference of terms? For so long as the ordinary significance of the words holds, and no argument is found to transfer the sense of the terms to an opposite meaning, it is not possible that any one nature should be divided between the conception of "product of making," and that of "product of generation." Since each of these terms, used by itself, has a meaning of its own, we must also suppose the relative conjunction in which they stand to be appropriate and germane to the terms. For all other relative terms have their connection, not with what is foreign and heterogeneous, but, even if the correlative term be suppressed, we hear spontaneously, together with the primary word, that which is linked with it, as in the case of "maker," "slave," "friend," "son," and so forth. For all names that are considered as relative to another, present to us, by the mention of them, each its proper and closely connected relationship with that which it declares, while they avoid all mixture of that which is heterogeneous(6). For neither is the name of "maker" linked with the word "son," nor the term "slave" referred to the term "maker," nor does "friend" present to us a "slave," nor "son" a "master," but we recognize clearly and distinctly the connection of each of these with its correlative, conceiving by the word "friend" another friend; by "slave," a master; by "maker," work; by "son," a father. In the same way, then, "product of generation" has its proper relative sense; with the "product of generation," surely, is linked the generator, and with the "product of creation" the creator; and we must certainly, if we are not prepared by a substitution of names to introduce a confusion of things, preserve for each of the relative terms that which it properly connotes.

Now, seeing that the tendency of the meaning of these words is manifest, how comes it that one who advances his doctrine by the aid of logical system failed to perceive in these names their proper relative sense? But he thinks that he is linking on the "product of generation" to "maker," and the "product of making" to "generator," by saying that the essence of the Son "admits for itself the appellations of 'product of generation,' 'product of making,' and 'product of creation,'" and "preserves indivisible its relation to its Generator, Maker, and Creator." For it is contrary to nature, that a single thing should be split up into different relations. But the Son is properly related to the Father, and that which is begotten to him that begat it, while the "product of making" has its relation to its "maker"; save if one might consider some inexact use, in some undistinguishing way of common parlance, to overrule the strict signification.

By what reasoning then is it, and by what arguments, according to that invincible logic of his, that he wins back the opinion of the mass of men, and follows out at his pleasure this line of thought, that as the God Who is over all is conceived and spoken of both as "Creator" and as "Father," the Son has a close connection with both titles, being equally called both "product of creation" and "product of generation"? For as customary accuracy of speech distinguishes between names of this kind, and applies the name of "generation" in the case of things generated from the essence itself, and understands that of "creation" of those things which are external to the nature of their maker, and as on this account the Divine doctrines, in handing down the knowledge of God, have delivered to us the names of "Father" and "Son," not those of "Creator" and "work," that there might arise no error tending to blasphemy (as might happen if an appellation of the latter kind repelled the Son to the position of an alien and a stranger), and that the impious doctrines which sever the Only- begotten from essential affinity with the Father might find no entrance-- seeing all this, I say, he who declares that the appellation of "product of making" is one befitting the Son, will safely say by consequence that the name of "Son" is properly applicable to that which is the product of making; so that, if the Son is a "product of making," the heaven is called "Son," and the individual things that have been made are, according to our author, properly named by the appellation of "Son." For if He has this name, not because He shares in nature with Him that begat Him, but is called Son for this reason, that He is created, the same argument will permit that a lamb, a dog, a frog, and all things that exist by the will of their maker, should be named by the title of "Son." If, on the other hand, each of these is not a Son and is not called God, by reason of its being external to the nature of the Son, it follows, surely, that He Who is truly Son is Son, and is confessed to be God by reason of His being of the very nature of Him that begat Him. But Eunomius abhors the idea of generation, and excludes it from the Divine doctrine, slandering the term by his fleshly speculations. Well, our discourse, in what precedes, showed sufficiently on this point that, as the Psalmist says, "they are afraid where no fear is(7)." For if it was shown in the case of men that not all generation exists by way of passion, but that that which is material is by passion, while that which is spiritual is pure and incorruptible, (for that which is begotten of the Spirit is spirit and not flesh, and in spirit we see no condition that is subject to passion,) since our author thought it necessary to estimate the Divine power by means of examples among ourselves, let him persuade himself to conceive from the other mode of generation the passionless character of the Divine generation. Moreover, by mixing up together these three names, of which two are equivalent, he thinks that his readers, by reason of the community of sense in the two phrases, will jump to the conclusion that the third is equivalent also. For since the appellation of "product of making," and "product of creation," indicate that the thing made is external to the nature of the maker, he couples with these the phrase, "product of generation," that this too may be interpreted along with those above mentioned. But argument of this sort is termed fraud and falsehood and imposition, not a thoughtful and skilful demonstration. For that only is called demonstration which shows what is unknown from what is acknowledged; but to reason fraudulently and fallaciously, to conceal your own reproach, and to confound by superficial deceits the understanding of men, as the Apostle says, "of corrupt minds(8)," this no sane man would call a skilful demonstration.

Let us proceed, however, to what follows in order. He says that the generation of the essence is "without intervention," and that it "preserves indivisible its relation to its Generator, Maker, and Creator." Well, if he had spoken of the immediate and indivisible character of the essence, and stopped his discourse there, it would not have swerved from the orthodox view, since we too confess the close connection and relation of the Son with the Father, so that there is nothing inserted between them which is found to intervene in the connection of the Son with the Father, no conception of interval, not even that minute and indivisible one, which, when time is divided into past, present, and future, is conceived indivisibly by itself as the present, as it cannot be considered as a part either of the past or of the future, by reason of its being quite without dimensions and incapable of division, and unobservable, to whichever side it might be added. That, then, which is perfectly immediate, admits we say, of no such intervention; for that which is separated by any interval would cease to be immediate. If, therefore, our author, likewise, in saying that the generation of the Son is "without intervention," excluded all these ideas then he laid down the orthodox doctrine of the conjunction of Him Who is with the Father. When, however, as though in a fit of repentance, he straightway proceeded to add to what he had said that the essence "preserves its relation to its Generator, Maker, and Creator," he polluted his first statement by his second, vomiting forth his blasphemous utterance upon the pure doctrine. For it is clear that there too his "without intervention" has no orthodox intention, but, as one might say that the hammer is mediate between the smith and the nail, but its own making is "without intervention," because, when tools had not yet been found out by the craft, the hammer came first from the craftsman's hands by some inventive process, not(9) by means of any other tool, and so by it the others were made; so the phrase, "without intervention," indicates that this is also our author's conception touching the Only-begotten. And here Eunomius is not alone in his error as regards the enormity of his doctrine, but you may find a parallel also in the works of Theognostus(1), who says that God, wishing to make this universe, first brought the Son into existence as a sort of standard of the creation; not perceiving that in his statement there is involved this absurdity, that what exists, not for its own sake, but for the sake of something else, is surely of less value than that for the sake of which it exists: as we provide an implement of husbandry for the sake of life, yet the plough is surely not reckoned as equally valuable with life. So, if the Lord also exists on account of the world, and not all things on account of Him, the whole of the things for the sake of which they say He exists, would be more valuable than the Lord. And this is what they are here establishing by their argument, where they insist that the Son has His relation to His Creator and Maker "without intervention."

7. He then clearly and skilfully criticises the doctrine of the impossibility of comparison with the things made after the Son, and exposes idolatry contrived & Eunomius, and concealed by the terminology of "Son" and "Only-begotten," to deceive his readers.

In the remainder of the passage, however, he becomes conciliatory, and says that the essence "is not compared with any of the things that were made by it and after it(2)." Such are the gifts which the enemies of the truth offer to the Lord(3), by which their blasphemy is made more manifest. Tell me what else is there of all things in creation the admits of comparison with a different thing, seeing that the characteristic nature that appears in each absolutely rejects community with things of a different kind(4)? The heaven admits no comparison with the earth, nor this with the stars, nor the stars with the seas, nor water with stone, nor animals with trees, nor land animals with winged creatures, nor four-footed beasts with those that swim, nor irrational with rational creatures. Indeed, why should one take up time with individual instances, in showing that we may say of every single thing that we behold in the creation, precisely what was thrown to the Only-begotten, as if it were something special--that He admits of comparison with none of the things that have been produced after Him and by Him? For it is clear that everything which you conceive by itself is incapable of comparison with the universe, and with the individual things which compose it; and it is this, which may be truly said of any creature you please, which is allotted by the enemies of the truth, as adequate and sufficient for His honour and glory, to the Only-begotten God! And once more, putting together phrases of the same sort in the remainder of the passage, he dignifies Him with his empty honours, calling Him "Lord" and "Only-begotten": but that no orthodox meaning may be conveyed to his readers by these names, he promptly mixes up blasphemy with the more notable of them. His phrase runs thus:--"Inasmuch," he says, "as the generated essence leaves no room for community to anything else (for it is only-begotten(5)), nor is the operation of the Maker contemplated as common." O marvellous insolence! as though he were addressing his harangue to brutes, or senseless beings "which have no understanding(6)," he twists his argument about in contrary ways, as he pleases; or rather he suffers as men do who are deprived of sight; for they too behave often in unseemly ways before the eyes of those who see, supposing, because they themselves cannot see, that they are also unseen. For what sort of man is it who does not see the contradiction in his words? Because it is "generated," he says, the essence leaves other things no room for community, for it is only- begotten; and then when he has uttered these words, really as though he did not see or did not suppose himself to be seen, he tacks on, as if corresponding to what he has said, things that have nothing in common with them, coupling "the operation of the maker" with the essence of the Only- begotten. That which is generated is correlative to the generator, and the Only-begotten, surely, by consequence, to the Father; and he who looks to the truth beholds, in co-ordination with the Son, not "the operation of the maker," but the nature of Him that begat Him. But he, as if he were talking about plants or seeds, or some other thing in the order of creation, sets "the operation of the maker" by the side of the existence(7) of the Only- begotten. Why, if a stone or a stick, or something of that sort, were the subject of consideration, it would be logical to pre-suppose "the operation of the maker"; but if the Only-begotten God is confessed, even by His adversaries, to be a Son, and to exist by way of generation, how do the same words befit Him that befit the lowest portions of the creation? how do they think it pious to say concerning the Lord the very thing which may be truly said of an ant or a gnat? For if any one understood the nature of an ant, and its peculiar ties in reference to other living things, he would not be beyond the truth in saying that "the operation of its maker is not contemplated as common" with reference to the other things. What, therefore, is affirmed of such things as these, this they predicate also of the Only-begotten, and as hunters are said to intercept the passage of their game with holes, and to conceal their design by covering over the mouths of the holes with some unsound and unsubstantial material, in order that the pit may seem level with the ground about it, so heresy contrives against men something of the same sort, covering over the hole of their impiety with these fine-sounding and pious names, as it were with a level thatch, so that those who are rather unintelligent, thinking that these men's preaching is the same with the true faith, because of the agreement of their words, hasten towards the mere name of the Son and the Only- begotten, and step into emptiness in the hole, since the significance of these titles will not sustain the weight of their tread, but lets them down into the pitfall of the denial of Christ. This is why be speaks of the generated essence that leaves nothing room for community, and calls it "Only-begotten." These are the coverings of the hole. But when any one stops before he is caught in the gulf, and puts forth the test of argument, like a hand, upon his discourse, he sees the dangerous downfall of idolatry lying beneath the doctrine. For when he draws near, as though to God and the Son of God, he finds a creature of God set forth for his worship. This is why they proclaim high and low the name of the Only-begotten, that the destruction may be readily accepted by the victims of their deceit, as though one were to mix up poison in bread, and give a deadly greeting to those who asked for food, who would not have been willing to take the poison by itself, had they not been enticed to what they saw. Thus he has a sharp eye to the object of his efforts, at least so far as his own opinion goes. For if he had entirely rejected from his teaching the name of the Son, his falsehood would not have been acceptable to men, when his denial was openly stated in a definite proclamation; but now leaving only the name, and changing the signification of it to express creation, he at once sets up his idolatry, and fraudulently hides its reproach. But since we are bidden not to honour God with our lips(8), and piety is not tested by the sound of a ward, but the Son must first be the object of belief in the heart unto righteousness, and then be confessed with the mouth unto salvation(9), and those who say in their hearts that He is not God, even though with their mouths they confess Him as Lord, are corrupt and became abominable(1), as the prophet says,--for this cause, I say, we must look to the mind of those who put forward, forsooth, the words of the faith, and not be enticed to follow their sound. If, then, one who speaks of the Son does not by that word refer to a creature, he is on our side and not on the enemy's; but if any one applies the name of Son to the creation, he is to be ranked among idolaters. For they too gave the name of God to Dagon and Bel and the Dragon, but they did not on that account worship God. For the wood and the brass and the monster were not God.

8. He proceeds to show that there is no "variance" in the essence of the Father and the Son: wherein he expounds many forms of variation and harmony, and explains the "form," the "seal," and the "express intake."

But what need is there in our discourse to reveal his hidden deceit by mere guesses at his intention, and possibly to give our hearers occasions for objection, on the ground that we make these charges against our enemies untruly? For lo, he sets forth to us his blasphemy in its nakedness, not hiding his guile by any veil, but speaking boldly in his absurdities with unrestrained voice. What he has written runs thus:--"We, for our part," he says, "as we find nothing else besides the essence of the Son which admits of the generation, are of opinion that we must assign the appellations to the essence itself, or else we speak of 'Son' and 'begotten' to no purpose, and as a mere verbal matter, if we are really to separate them from the essence; starting from these names, we also confidently maintain that the essences are variant from each other(2)."

There is no need, I imagine, that the absurdity here laid down should be refuted by arguments from us. The mere reading of what he has written is enough to pillory his blasphemy. But let us thus examine it. He says that the essences of the Father and the Son are "variant." What is meant by "variant"? Let us first of all examine the force of the term as it is applied by itself(3), that by the interpretation of the word its blasphemous character may be more clearly revealed. The term "variance" is used, in the inexact sense sanctioned by custom, of bodies, when, by palsy or any other disease, any limb is perverted from its natural co-ordination. For we speak, comparing the state of suffering with that of health, of the condition of one who has been subjected to a change for the worse, as being a "variation" from his usual health; and in the case of those who differ in respect of virtue and vice, comparing the licentious life with that of purity and temperance, or the unjust life with that of justice, or the life which is passionate, warlike, and prodigal of anger, with that which is mild and peaceful--and generally all that is reproached with vice, as compared with what is more excellent, is said to exhibit "variance" from it, because the marks observed in both--in the good, I mean, and the inferior--do not mutually agree. Again, we say that those qualities observed in the elements are "at variance" which are mutually opposed as contraries, having a power reciprocally destructive, as heat and cold, or dryness and moisture, or, generally, anything that is opposed to another as a contrary; and the absence of union in these we express by the term "variation"; and generally everything which is out of harmony with another in their observed characteristics, is said to be "at variance" with it, as health with disease, life with death, war with peace, virtue with vice, and all similar cases.

Now that we have thus analyzed these expressions, let us also consider in regard to our author in what sense he says that the essences of the Father and the Son are "variant from each other." What does he mean by it? Is it in the sense that the Father is according to nature, while the Son "varies" from that nature? Or does he express by this word the perversion of virtue, separating the evil from the more excellent by the name of "variation," so as to regard the one essence in a good, the other m a contrary aspect? Or does he assert that one Divine essence also is variant from another, in the manner of the opposition of the elements? or as war stands to peace, and life to death, does he also perceive in the essences the conflict which so exists among all such things, so that they cannot unite one with another, because the mixture of contraries exerts upon the things mingled a consuming force, as the wisdom of the Proverbs saith of such a doctrine, that water and fire never say "It is enough(4)," expressing enigmatically the nature of contraries of equal force and equal balance, and their mutual destruction? Or is it in none of these ways that he sees "variance" in the essences? Let him tell us, then, what he conceives besides these. He could not say, I take it, even if he were to repeat his wonted phrase(5), "The Son is variant from Him Who begot Him"; for thereby the absurdity of his statements is yet more clearly shown. For what mutual relation is so closely and concordantly engrafted and fitted together as that meaning of relation to the Father expressed by the word "Son"? And a proof of this is that even if both of these names be not spoken, that which is omitted is connoted by the one that is uttered, so closely is the one implied in the other, and concordant with it: and both of them are so discerned in the one that one cannot be conceived without the other. Now that which is "at variance" is surely so conceived and so called, in opposition to that which is "in harmony," as the plumb-line is in harmony with the straight line, while that which is crooked, when set beside that which is straight, does not harmonize with it. Musicians also are wont to call the agreement of notes "harmony," and that which is out of tune and discordant "inharmonious." To speak of things as at "variance," then, is the same as to speak of them as "out of harmony." If, therefore, the nature of the Only-begotten God is at "variance," to use the heretical phrase, with the essence of the Father, it is surely not in harmony with it: and in harmoniousness cannot exist where there is no possibility of harmony(6). For the case is as when, the figure in the wax and in the graying of the signet being one, the wax that has been stamped by the signet, when it is fitted again. to the latter, makes the impression on itself accord with that which surrounds it, filling up the hollows and accommodating the projections of the engraving with its own patterns: but if some strange and different pattern is fitted to the engraving of the signet, it makes its own form rough and confused, by rubbing off its figure on an engraved surface that does not correspond with it. But He Who is "in the form of God(7)" has been formed by no impression different from the Father, seeing that He is "the express image" of the Father's Person(8), while the "form of God" is surely the same thing as His essence. For as, "being made in the form of a servant(9)," He was formed in the essence of a servant, not taking upon Him the form merely, apart from the essence, but the essence is involved in the sense of "form," so, surely, he who says that He is "in the form of God" signified essence by" form." If, therefore, He is "in the form of God," and being in the Father is sealed with the Father's glory, (as the word of the Gospel declares, which Saith, "Him hath God the Father sealed(1),"--whence also "He that hath seen Me hath seen the Father(2),") then "the image of goodness" and "the brightness of glory," and all other similar titles, testify that the essence of the Son is not out of harmony with the Father. Thus by the text cited is shown the insubstantial character of the adversaries' blasphemy. For if things at "variance" are not in harmony, and He Who is sealed by the Father, and displays the Father in Himself, both being in the Father, and having the Father in Himself(3), shows in all points His close relation and harmony, then the absurdity of the opposing views is hereby overwhelmingly shown. For as that which is at "variance" was shown to be out of harmony, so conversely that which is harmonious is surely confessed beyond dispute not to be at "variance." For as that which is at "variance" is not harmonious, so the harmonious is not at "variance." Moreover, he who says that the nature of the Only-begotten is at "variance" with the good essence of the Father, clearly has in view variation in the good itself. But as for what that is which is at variance with the good--"O ye simple," as the Proverb saith, "understand his craftiness(4)!"

9. Then, distinguishing between essence and generation, he declares the empty and frivolous language of Eunomius to be like a rattle. He proceeds to show that the language used by the great Basil on the subject of the generation of the Only-begotten has been grievously slandered by Eunomius, and so ends the book.

I will pass by these matters, however, as the absurdity involved is evident; let us examine what precedes. He says that nothing else is found, "besides the essence of the Son, which admits of the generation." What does he mean when he says this? He distinguishes two names from each other, and separating by his discourse the things signified by them, he sets each of them individually apart by itself. "The generation" is one name, and "the essence" is another. The essence, he tells us, "admits of the generation," being therefore of course something distinct from the generation. For if the generation were the essence (which is the very thing he is constantly declaring), so that the two appellations are equivalent in sense, he would not have said that the essence "admits of the generation": for that would amount to saying that the essence admits of the essence, or the generation the generation,--if, that is, the generation were the same thing as the essence. He understands, then, the generation to be one thing, and the essence to be another, which "admits of generation": for that which is taken cannot be the same with that which admits it. Well, this is what the sage and systematic statement of our author says: but as to whether there is any sense in his words, let him consider who is expert in judging. I will resume his actual words.

He says that he finds "nothing else besides the essence of the Son which admits of the generation"; that there is no sense in his words however, is clear to every one who hears his statement at all: the task which remains seems to be to bring to light the blasphemy which he is trying to construct by aid of these meaningless words. For he desires, even if he cannot effect his purpose, to produce in his hearers by this slackness of expression, the notion that the essence of the Son is the result of construction: but he calls its construction "generation," decking out his horrible blasphemy with the fairest phrase, that if "construction" is the meaning conveyed by the word "generation," the idea of the creation of the Lord may receive a ready assent. He says, then, that the essence "admits of generation," so that every construction may be viewed, as it were, in some subject matter. For no one would say that that is constructed which has no existence, so extending "making" in his discourse, as if it were some constructed fabric, to the nature of the Only-begotten God(5). "If, then," he says, "it admits of this generation,"--wishing to convey some such meaning as this, that it would not have been, had it not been constructed. But what else is there among the things we contemplate in the creation which is without being made? Heaven, earth, air, sea, everything whatever that is, surely is by being made. How, then, comes it that he considered it a peculiarity in the nature of the Only begotten, that it "admits generation" (for this is his name for making) "into its actual essence," as though the humble-bee or the gnat did not admit generation into itself(6), but into something else besides itself. It is therefore acknowledged by his own writings, that by them the essence of the Only- begotten is placed on the same level with the smallest parts of the creation: and every proof by which he attempts to establish the alienation of the Son from the Father has the same force also in the case of individual things. What need has he, then, for this varied acuteness to establish the diversity of nature, when he ought to have taken the short cut of denial, by openly declaring that the name of the Son ought not to be confessed, or the Only-begotten God to be preached in the churches, but that we ought to esteem the Jewish worship as superior to the faith of Christians, and, while we confess the Father as being alone Creator and Maker of the world, to reduce all other things to the name and conception of the creation, and among these to speak of that work which preceded the rest as a "thing made," which came into being by some constructive operation, and to give Him the title of "First created," instead of Only- begotten and Very Son. For when these opinions have carried the day, it will be a very easy matter to bring doctrines to a conclusion in agreement with the aim they have in view, when all are guided, as you might expect from such a principle, to the consequence that it is impossible that He Who is neither begotten nor a Son, but has His existence through some energy, should share in essence with God. So long, however, as the declarations of the Gospel prevail, by which He is proclaimed as "Son," and "Only- begotten," and "of the Father," and "of God," and the like, Eunomius will talk his nonsense to no purpose, leading himself and his followers astray by such idle chatter. For while the title of "Son" speaks aloud the true relation to the Father, who is so foolish that, while John and Paul and the rest of the choir of the Saints proclaim these words,--words of truth, and words that point to the close affinity,--he does not look to them, but is led by the empty rattle of Eunomius' sophisms to think that Eunomius is a truer guide than the teaching of these who by the Spirit speak mysteries(7), and who bear Christ in themselves? Why, who is this Eunomius? Whence was be raised up to be the guide of Christians?

But let all this pass, and let our earnestness about what lies before us calm down our heart, that is swollen with jealousy on behalf of the faith against the blasphemers. For how is it possible not to be moved to wrath and hatred, while our God, and Lord, and Life-giver, and Saviour is insulted by these wretched men? If he had reviled my father according to the flesh, or been at enmity with my benefactor, would it have been possible to bear without emotion his anger against those I love? And if the Lord of my soul, Who gave it being when it was not, and redeemed it when in bondage, and gave me to taste of this present life, and prepared for me the life to come, Who calls us to a kingdom, and gives us His commands that we may escape the damnation of hell,--these are small things that I speak of, and not worthy to express the greatness of our common Lord--He that is worshipped by all creation, by things in heaven, and things on earth, and things under the earth, by Whom stand the unnumbered myriads of the heavenly ministers, to Whom is turned all that is under rule here, and that has the desire of good--if He is exposed to reviling by men, for whom it is not enough to associate themselves with the party of the apostate, but who count it loss not to draw others by their scribbling into the same gulf with themselves, that those who come after may not lack a hand to lead them to destruction, is there any one s who blames us for our anger against these men? But let us return to the sequence of his discourse.

He next proceeds once mere to slander us as dishonouring the generation of the Son by human similitudes, and mentions what was written on these points by our father(9), where he says that while by the word "Son" two things are signified, the being formed by passion, and the true relationship to the begetter, he does not admit in discourses upon things divine the former sense, which is unseemly and carnal, but in so far as the latter tends to testify to the glory of the Only-begotten, this alone finds a place in the sublime doctrines. Who, then, dishonours the generation of the Son by human notions? He who sets far from the Divine generation what belongs to passion and to man, and joins the Son impassibly to Him that begat Him? or he who places Him Who brought all things into being on a common level with the lower creation? Such an idea, however, as it seems,-- that of associating the Son in the majesty of the Father,--this new wisdom seems to regard as dishonouring; while it considers as great and sublime the act of bringing Him down to equality with the creation that is in bondage with us. Empty complaints! Basil is slandered as dishonouring the Son, who honours Him even as he honours the Father(1), and Eunomius is the champion of the Only-begotten, who severs Him from the good nature of the Father! Such a reproach Paul also once incurred with the Athenians, being charged therewith by them as "a setter forth of strange gods(2)," when he was reproving the wandering among their gods of those who were mad in their idolatry, and was leading them to the truth, preaching the resurrection by the Son These charges are now brought against Paul's follower by the new Stoics and Epicureans, who "spend their time in nothing else," as the history says of the Athenians, "but either to tell or to hear some new thing(3)." For what could be found newer than this,--a Son of an energy, and a Father of a creature, and a new God springing up from nothing, and good at variance with good? These are they who profess to honour Him with due honour by saying that He is not that which the nature of Him that begat Him is. Is Eunomius not ashamed of the form of such honour, if one were to say that he himself is not akin in nature to his father, but has community with something of another kind? If he who brings the Lord of the creation into community with the creation declares that he honours Him by so doing, let him also himself be honoured by having community assigned him with what is brute and senseless: but, if he finds community with an inferior nature hard and insolent treatment, how is it honour for Him Who, as the prophet saith, "ruleth with His power for ever(4)," to be ranked with that nature which is in subjection and bondage? But enough of this.


1. The fifth book promises to speak of the words contained in the saying of the Apostle Peter, but delays their exposition. He discourses first of the creation, to the effect that, while nothing therein is deserving of worship, yet men, led astray by their ill-informed and feeble intelligence, and marvelling at its beauty, deified the several parts of the universe. And herein he excellently expounds the passage of Isaiah, "I am God, the first."

IT is now, perhaps, time to make enquiry into what is said concerning the words of the Apostle Peter(1), by Eunomius himself, and by our father(2) concerning the latter. If a detailed examination should extend our discourse to considerable length, the fair-minded reader will no doubt pardon this, and will not blame us for wasting time in words, but lay the blame on him who has given occasion for them. Let me be allowed also to make some brief remarks preliminary to the proposed enquiry: it may be that they too will be found not to be out of keeping with the aim of our discussion.

That no created thing is deserving of man's worship, the divine word so clearly declares as a law, that such a truth may be learned from almost the whole of the inspired Scripture. Moses, the Tables, the Law, the Prophets that follow, the Gospels, the decrees of the Apostles, all alike forbid the act of reverencing the creation. It would be a lengthy task to set out in order the particular passages which refer to this matter; but though we set out only a few from among the many instances of the inspired testimony, our argument is surely equally convincing, since each of the divine words, albeit the least, has equal force for declaration of the truth. Seeing, then, that our conception of existences is divided into two, the creation and the uncreated Nature, if the present contention of our adversaries should prevail, so that we should say that the Son of God is created, we should be absolutely compelled either to set at naught the proclamation of the Gospel, and to refuse to worship that God the Word Who was in the beginning, on the ground that we must not address worship to the creation, or, if these marvels recorded in the Gospels are too urgent for us, by which we are led to reverence and to worship Him Who is displayed in them, to place, in that case, the created and the Uncreated on the same level of honour; seeing that if, according to our adversaries' opinion, even the created God is worshipped, though having in His nature no prerogative above the rest of the creation, and if this view should get the upper hand, the doctrines of religion will be entirely transformed to a kind of anarchy and democratic independence. For when men believe that the nature they worship is not one, but have their thoughts turned away to diverse Godheads, there will be none who will stay the conception of the Deity in its progress through creation, but the Divine element, once recognized in creation, will become a stepping-stone to the like conception in the case of that which is next contemplated, and that again for the next in order, and as a result of this inferential process the error will extend to all things, as the first deceit makes its way by contiguous cases even to the very last.

To show that I am not making a random statement beyond what probability admits of, I will cite as a credible testimony in favour of my assertion the error which still prevails among the heathen(3). Seeing that they, with their untrained and narrow intelligence, were disposed to look with wonder on the beauties of nature, not employing the things they beheld as a leader and guide to the beauty of the Nature that transcends them, they rather made their intelligence halt on arriving at the objects of its apprehension, and marvelled at each part of the creation severally--for this cause they did not stay their conception of the Deity at any single one of the things they beheld, but deemed everything they looked on in creation to be divine. And thus with the Egyptians, as the error developed its force more in respect of intellectual objects, the countless forms of spiritual beings were reckoned to be so many natures of Gods; while with the Babylonians the unerring circuit of the firmament was accounted a God, to whom they also gave the name of Bel. So, too, the foolishness of the heathen deifying individually the seven successive spheres, one bowed down to one, another to another, according to some individual form of error. For as they perceived all these circles moving in mutual relation, seeing that they had gone astray as to the most exalted, they maintained the same error by logical sequence, even to the last of them. And in addition to these, the aether itself, and the atmosphere diffused beneath it, the earth and sea and the subterranean region, and in the earth itself all things which are useful or needful for man's life,--of all these there was none which they held to be without part or lot in the Divine nature, but they bowed down to each of them, bringing themselves, by means of some one of the objects conspicuous in the creation, into bondage to all the successive parts of the creation, in such a way that, had the act of reverencing the creation been from the beginning even to them a thing evidently unlawful, they would not have been led astray into this deceit of polytheism. Let us look to it, then, lest we too share the same fate,--we who in being taught by Scripture to reverence the true Godhead, were trained to consider all created existence as external to the Divine nature, and to worship and revere that uncreated Nature alone, Whose characteristic and token is that it never either begins to be or ceases to be; since the great Isaiah thus speaks of the Divine nature with reference to these doctrines, in his exalted utterance,--who speaks in the person of the Deity, "I am the first, and hereafter am I, and no God was before Me, and no God shall be after Me(4)." For knowing more perfectly than all others the mystery of the religion of the Gospel, this great prophet, who foretold even that marvellous sign concerning the Virgin, and gave us the good tidings(5) of the birth of the Child, and clearly pointed out to us that Name of the Son,--he, in a word, who by the Spirit includes in himself all the truth,-- in order that the characteristic of the Divine Nature, whereby we discern that which really is from that which came into being, might be made as plain as possible to all, utters this saying in the person of God: "I am the first, and hereafter am I, and before Me no God hath been, and after Me is none." Since, then, neither is that God which was before God, nor is that God which is after God, (for that which is after God is the creation, and that which is anterior to God is nothing, and Nothing is not God;--or one should rather say, that which is anterior to God is God in His eternal blessedness, defined in contradistinction to Nothing(6);--since, I say, this inspired utterance was spoken by the mouth of the prophet, we learn by his means the doctrine that the Divine Nature is one, continuous with Itself and indiscerptible, not admitting in Itself priority and posteriority, though it be declared in Trinity, and with no one of the things we contemplate in it more ancient or more recent than another. Since, then, the saying is the saying of God, whether you grant that the words are the words of the Father or of the Son, the orthodox doctrine is equally upheld by either. For if it is the Father that speaks thus, He bears witness to the Son that He is not "after" Himself: for if the Son is God, and whatever is "after" the Father is not God, it is clear that the saying bears witness to the truth that the Son is in the Father, and not after the Father. If, on the other hand, one were to grant that this utterance is of the Son, the phrase, "None hath been before Me," will be a clear intimation that He Whom we contemplate "in the Beginning(7)" is apprehended together with the eternity of the Beginning. If, then, anything is "after" God, this is discovered, by the passages quoted, to be a creature, and not God: for He says, "That which is after Me is not God(8)."

2. He then explains the phrase of S. Peter, "Him God made Lord and Christ." And herein he sets forth the opposing statement of Eunomius, which he made on account of such phrase against S. Basil, and his lurking revilings and insults.

Now that we have had presented to us this preliminary view of existences, it may be opportune to examine the passage before us. It is said, then, by Peter to the Jews, "Him God made Lord and Christ, this Jesus Whom ye crucified(9)," while on our part it is said that it is not pious to refer the word "made" to the Divine Nature of the Only-begotten, but that it is to be referred to that "form of a servant(1)," which came into being by the Incarnation(2), in the due time of His appearing in the flesh; and, on the other hand, those who press the phrase the contrary way say that in the word "made" the Apostle indicates the pretemporal generation of the Son. We shall, therefore, set forth the passage in the midst, and after a detailed examination of both the suppositions, leave the judgment of the truth to our reader. Of our adversaries' view Eunomius himself may be a sufficient advocate, for he contends gallantly on the matter, so that in going through his argument word by word we shall completely follow out the reasoning of those who strive against us: and we ourselves will act as champion of the doctrine on our side as best we may, following so far as we are able the line of the argument previously set forth by the great Basil. But do you, who by your reading act as judges in the cause, "execute true judgment," as one of the prophets(3) says, not awarding the victory to contentious preconceptions, but to the truth as it is manifested by examination. And now let the accuser of our doctrines come forward, and read his indictment, as in a court of law.

"In addition, moreover, to what we have mentioned, by his refusal to take the word 'made' as referring to the essence of the Son, and withal by his being ashamed of the Cross, be ascribes to the Apostles what no one even of those who have done their best to speak ill of them on the score of stupidity, lays to their charge; and at the same time he clearly introduces, by his doctrines and arguments, two Christs and two Lords; for he says that it was not the Word Who was in the beginning Whom God made Lord and Christ, but He Who 'emptied Himself to take the form of a servant(4),' and 'was crucified through weakness(5).' At all events the great Basil writes expressly as follows(6):--'Nor, moreover, is it the intention of the Apostle to present to us that existence of the Only- begotten which was before the ages (which is now the subject of our argument), for he clearly speaks, not of the very essence of God the Word, Who was in the beginning with God, but of Him Who emptied Himself to take the form of a servant, and became conformable to the body of our humiliation(7), and was crucified through weakness.' And again, 'This is known to any one who even in a small degree applies his mind to the meaning of the Apostle's words, that he is not setting forth to us the mode of the Divine existence, but is introducing the terms which belong to the Incarnation; for he says, Him God made Lord and Christ, this Jesus Whom ye crucified, evidently laying stress by the demonstrative word on that in Him which was human and was seen by all(8).'

"This, then, is what the man has to say who substitutes,--for we may not speak of it as 'application,' lest any one should blame for such madness men holy and chosen for the preaching of godliness, so as to reproach their doctrine with a fall into such extravagance,--who substitutes his own mind(9) for the intention of the Apostles! With what confusion are they not filled, who refer their own nonsense to the memory of the saints! With what absurdity do they not abound, who imagine that the man 'emptied himself' to become man, and who maintain that He Who by obedience 'humbled himself' to take the form of a servant was made conformable to men even before He took that form upon Him! Who, pray, ye most reckless of men, when he has the form of a servant, takes the form of a servant? and how can any one 'empty himself' to become the very thing which he is? You will find no contrivance to meet this, bold as you are in saying or thinking things uncontrivable. Are you not verily of all men most miserable, who suppose that a man has suffered death for all men, and ascribe your own redemption to him? For if it is not of the Word Who was in the beginning and was God that the blessed Peter speaks, but of him who was 'seen,' and who 'emptied Himself,' as Basil says, and if the man who was seen 'emptied Himself' to take 'the form of a servant,' and He Who 'emptied Himself' to take 'the form of a servant,' emptied Himself to come into being as man, then the man who was seen emptied himself to come into being as man(1). The very nature of things is repugnant to this; and it is expressly contradicted by that writer(2) who celebrates this dispensation in his discourse concerning the Divine Nature, when he says not that the man who was seen, but that the Word Who was in the beginning and was God took upon Him flesh, which is equivalent in other words to taking 'the form of a servant.' If, then, you hold that these things are to be believed; depart from your error, and cease to believe that the man 'emptied himself' to become man. And if you are not able to persuade those who will not be persuaded, destroy their incredulity by another saying, a second decision against them. Remember him who says, 'Who being in the form of God thought it not robbery to be equal with God, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a servant.' There is none among men who will appropriate this phrase to himself. None of the saints that ever lived was the Only-begotten God and became man:--for that is what it means to 'take the form of a servant,' 'being in the form of God.' If, then, the blessed Peter speaks of Him Who 'emptied Himself' to 'take the form of a servant,' and if He Who was 'in the form of God' did 'empty Himself' to 'take the form of a servant,' and if He Who in the beginning was God, being the Word and the Only-begotten God, is He Who was 'in the form of God,' then the blessed Peter speaks to us of Him Who was in the beginning and was God, and expounds to us that it was He Who became Lord and Christ. This, then, is the conflict which Basil wages against himself, and he clearly appears neither to have 'applied his own mind to the intention of the Apostles', nor to be able to preserve the sequence of his own arguments; for, according to them, he must, if he is conscious of their irreconcilable character, admit that the Word Who was in the beginning and was God became Lord; or if he tries to fit together statements that are mutually conflicting, and contentiously stands by them, he will add to them others yet more hostile, and maintain that there are two Christs and two Lords. For if the Word that was in the beginning and was God be one, and He Who 'emptied Himself' and 'took the form of a servant' be another, and if God the Word, by Whom are all things, be Lord, and this Jesus, Who was crucified after all things had come into being, be Lord also, there are, according to his view, two Lords and Christs. Our author, then, cannot by any argument clear himself from this manifest blasphemy. But if any one were to say in support of him that the Word Who was in the beginning is indeed the same Who became Lord, but that He became Lord and Christ in respect of His presence in the flesh, He will surely be constrained to say that the Son was not Lord before His presence in the flesh. At all events, even if Basil and his faithless followers falsely proclaim two Lords and two Christs, for us there is one Lord and Christ, by Whom all things were made, not becoming Lord by way of promotion, but existing before all creation and before all ages, the Lord Jesus, by Whom are all things, while all the saints with one harmonious voice teach us this truth and proclaim it as the most excellent of doctrines. Here the blessed John teaches us that God the Word, by Whom all things were made, has become incarnate, saying, 'And the Word was made flesh(3)'; here the most admirable Paul, urging those who attend to him to humility, speaks of Christ Jesus, Who was in the form of God, and emptied Himself to take the form of a servant, and was humbled to death, even the death of the Cross(4); and again in another passage calls Him Who was crucified 'the Lord of Glory': 'for had they known it,' be says, 'they would not have crucified the Lord of Glory(5)'. Indeed, he speaks far more openly than this of the very essential nature by the name of 'Lord,' where he says, 'Now the Lord is the Spirit(6)'. If, then, the Word Who was in the beginning, in that He is Spirit, is Lord, and the Lord of glory, and if God made Him Lord and Christ, it was the very Spirit and God the Word that God so made, and not some other Lord Whom Basil dreams about."

3. A remarkable and original reply to these utterances, and a demonstration of the power of the Crucified, and of the fact that this subjection was of the Human Nature, not that which the Only-begotten has from the father. Also an explanation of the figure of the Cross, and of the appellation "Christ," and an account of the good gifts bestowed an the Human Nature by the Godhead which was commingled with it.

Well, such is his accusation. But I think it necessary in the first place to go briefly, by way of summary, over the points that he urges, and then to proceed to correct by my argument what he has said, that those who are judging the truth may find it easy to remember the indictment against us, which we have to answer, and that we may be able to dispose of each of the charges in regular order. He says that we are ashamed of the Cross of Christ, and slander the saints, and say that a man has "emptied himself" to become than, and suppose that the Lord had the "form of a servant" before His presence by the Incarnation, and ascribe our redemption to a man, and speak in our doctrine of two Christs and two Lords, or, if we do not do this, then we deny that the Only-begotten was Lord and Christ before the Passion. So that we may avoid this blasphemy, he will have us confess that the essence of the Son has been made, on the ground that the Apostle Peter by his own voice establishes such a doctrine. This is the substance of the accusation; for all that he has been at the trouble of saying by way of abuse of ourselves, I will pass by in silence, as being not at all to the point. It may be that this rhetorical stroke of phrases framed according to some artificial theory is the ordinary habit of those who play the rhetorician, an invention to swell the bulk of their indictment. Let our sophist then use his art to display his insolence, and vaunt his strength in reproaches against us, showing off his strokes in the intervals of the contest; let him call us foolish, call us of all men most reckless, of all men most miserable, full of confusion and absurdity, and make light of us at his good pleasure in any way he likes, and we will bear it; for to a reasonable man disgrace lies, not in hearing one who abuses him, but in making retort to what he says. There may even be some good in his expenditure of breath against us; for it may be that while he occupies his railing tongue in denouncing us he will at all events make some truce in his conflict against God. So let him take his fill of insolence as he likes: none will reply to him. For if a man has foul and loathsome breath, by reason of bodily disorder, or of some pestilential and malignant disease, he would not rouse any healthy person to emulate his misfortune so that one should choose, by himself acquiring disease, to repay, in the same evil kind, the unpleasantness of the man's ill odour. Such men our common nature bids us to pity, not to imitate. And so let us pass by everything of this kind which by mockery, indignation, provocation, and abuse, he has assiduously mixed up with his argument, and examine only his arguments as they concern the doctrinal points at issue. We shall begin again, then, from the beginning, and meet each of his charges in turn.

The beginning of his accusation was that we are ashamed of the Cross of Him Who for our sakes underwent the Passion. Surely he does not intend to charge against us also that we preach the doctrine of dissimilarity in essence! Why, it is rather to those who turn aside to this opinion that the reproach belongs of going about to make the Cross a shameful thing. For if by both parties alike the dispensation of the Passion is held as part of the faith, while we hold it necessary to honour, even as the Father is honoured, the God Who was manifested by the Cross, and they find the Passion a hindrance to glorifying the Only-begotten God equally with the Father that begat Him, then our sophist's charges recoil upon himself, and in the words with which he imagines himself to be accusing us, he is publishing his own doctrinal impiety. For it is clear that the reason why he sets the Father above the Son, and exalts Him with supreme honour, is this,--that in Him is not seen the shame of the Cross: and the reason why he asseverates that the nature of the Son varies in the sense of inferiority is this,--that the reproach of the Cross is referred to Him alone, and does not touch the Father. And let no one think that in saying this I am only following the general drift of his composition, for in going through all the blasphemy of his speech, which is there laboriously brought together, I found, in a passage later than that before us, this very blasphemy clearly expressed in undisguised language; and I propose to set forth, in the orderly course of my own argument, what they have written, which runs thus:--"If," he says," he can show that the God Who is over all, Who is the unapproachable Light, was incarnate, or could be incarnate, came under authority, obeyed commands, came under the laws of men, bore the Cross, then let him say that the Light is equal to the Light." Who then is it who is ashamed of the Cross? he who, even after the Passion, worships the Son equally with the Father, or he who even before the Passion insults Him, not only by ranking Him with the creation, but by maintaining that He is of passible nature, on the ground that He could not have come to experience His sufferings had He not had a nature capable of such sufferings? We on our part assert that even the body in which He underwent His Passion, by being mingled with the Divine Nature, was made by that commixture to be that which the assuming(7) Nature is. So far are we from entertaining any low idea concerning the Only-begotten God, that if anything belonging to our lowly nature was assumed in His dispensation of love for man, we believe that even this was transformed to what is Divine and incorruptible(8); but Eunomius makes the suffering of the Cross to be a sign of divergence in essence, in the sense of inferiority, considering, I know not how, the surpassing act of power, by which He was able to perform this, to be an evidence of weakness; failing to perceive the fact that, while nothing which moves according to its own nature is looked upon as surprisingly wonderful, all things that overpass the limitations of their own nature become especially the objects of admiration, and to them every ear is turned, every mind is attentive, in wonder at the marvel. And hence it is that all who preach the word point out the wonderful character of the mystery in this respect,--that "God was manifested in the flesh(9)," that "the Word was made flesh(1)," that "the Light shined in darkness(2)," "the Life tasted death," and all such declarations which the heralds of the faith are wont to make, whereby is increased the marvellous character of Him Who manifested the superabundance of His power by means external to his own nature. But though they think fit to make this a subject for their insolence, though they make the dispensation of the Cross a reason for partitioning off the Son from equality of glory with the Father, we believe, as those "who from the beginning were eye-witnesses and ministers of the word(3)" delivered to us by the Holy Scriptures, that the God who was in the beginning, "afterwards", as Baruch says, "was seen upon the earth, and conversed with men(4)," and, becoming a ransom for our death, loosed by His own resurrection the bonds of death, and by Himself made the resurrection a way for all flesh(5), and being on the same throne and in the same glory with His own Father, will in the day of judgment give sentence upon those who are judged, according to the desert of the lives they have led. These are the things which we believe concerning Him Who was crucified, and for this cause we cease not to extol Him exceedingly, according to the measure of our powers, that He Who by reason of His unspeakable and unapproachable greatness is not comprehensible by any, save by Himself and the Father and the Holy Spirit, He, I say, was able even to descend to community with our weakness. But they adduce this proof of the Son's alienation in nature from the Father, that the Lord was manifested by the flesh and by the Cross, arguing on the ground that the Father's nature remained pure in impassibility, and could not in any way admit of a community which tended to passion, while the Son, by reason of the divergence of His nature by way of humiliation, was not incapable of being brought to experience the flesh and death, seeing that the change of condition was not great, but one which took place in a certain sense from one like state to another state kindred and homogeneous, because the nature of man is created, and the nature of the Only-begotten is created also. Who then is fairly charged with being ashamed of the Cross? he who speaks basely of it(6), or he who contends for its more exalted aspect? I know not whether our accuser, who thus abases the God Who was made known upon the Cross, has heard the lofty speech of Paul, in what terms and at what length he discourses with his exalted lips concerning that Cross. For he, who was able to make himself known by miracles so many and so great, says, "God forbid that I should glory in anything else, than, in the Cross of Christ(7)." And to the Corinthians he says that the word of the Cross is "the power of God to them that are in a state of salvation(8)." To the Ephesians, moreover, he describes by the figure of the Cross the power that controls and holds together the universe, when he expresses a desire that they may be exalted to know the exceeding glory of ibis power, calling it height, and depth, and breadth, and length(9), speaking of the several projections we behold in the figure of the Cross by their proper names, so that he calls the upper part "height," and that which is below, on the opposite side of the junction, "depth," while by the name "length and breadth" he indicates the cross-beam projecting to either side, that hereby might be manifested this great mystery, that both things in heaven, and things under the earth, and all the furthest bounds of the things that are, are ruled and sustained by Him Who gave an example of this unspeakable and mighty power in the figure of the Cross. But I think there is no need to contend further with such objections, as I judge it superfluous to be anxious about urging arguments against calumny when even a few words suffice to show the truth. Let us therefore pass on to another charge.

He says that by us the saints are slandered. Well, if be has beard it himself, let him tell us the words of our defamation: if he thinks we have uttered it to others, let him show the truth of his charge by witnesses: if he demonstrates it from what we have written, let him read the words, and we will bear the blame. But he cannot bring forward anything of the kind: our writings are open for examination to any one who desires it. If it was not said to himself, and he has not heard it from others, and has no proof to offer from our writings, I think he who has to make answer on this point may well hold his peace: silence is surely the fitting answer to an unfounded charge.

The Apostle Peter says, "God made this Jesus, Whom ye crucified, Lord and Christ(1)." We, learning this from him, say that the whole context of the passage tends one way,--the Cross itself, the human name, the indicative turn of the phrase. For the word of the Scripture says that in regard to one person two things were wrought,--by the Jews, the Passion, and by God, honour; not as though one person had suffered and another had been honoured by exaltation: and he further explains this yet more clearly by his words in what follows, "being exalted by the right hand of God." Who then was "exalted"? He that was lowly, or He that was the Highest? and what else is the lowly, but the Humanity? what else is the Highest, but the Divinity? Surely, God needs not to be exalted, seeing that He is the Highest. It follows, then, that the Apostle's meaning is that the Humanity was exalted: and its exaltation was effected by its becoming Lord and Christ. And this took place after the Passion(2) It is not therefore the pre-temporal existence of the Lord which the Apostle indicates by the word "made," but that change of the lowly to the lofty which was effected "by the right hand of God." Even by this phrase is declared the mystery of godliness; for he who says "exalted by the right hand of God" manifestly reveals the unspeakable dispensation of this mystery, that the Right. Hand of God, that made all things that are, (which is the Lord, by Whom all things were made, and without Whom nothing that is subsists,) Itself raised to Its own height the Man united with It, making Him also to be what It is by nature. Now It is Lord and King: Christ is the King's name: these things It made Him too. For as He was highly exalted by being in the Highest, so too He became all else,--Immortal in the Immortal, Light in the Light, Incorruptible in the Incorruptible, Invisible in the Invisible, Christ in the Christ, Lord in the Lord. For even in physical combinations. when one of the combined parts exceeds the other in a great degree, the inferior is wont to change completely to that which is more potent. And this we are plainly taught by the voice of the Apostle Peter in his mystic discourse, that the lowly nature of Him Who was crucified through weakness, (and weakness, as we have heard from the Lord, marks the flesh(3),) that lowly nature, I say, by virtue of its combination with the infinite and boundless element of good, remained no longer in its own measures and properties, but was by the Right Hand of God raised up together with Itself, and became Lord instead of servant, Christ a King instead of a subject, Highest instead of Lowly, God instead of man. What handle then against the saints did he who pretends to give warning against us in defence of the Apostles find in the material of our writings? Let us pass over this charge also in silence; for I think it a mean and unworthy thing to stand up against charges that are false and unfounded. Let us pass on to the more pressing part of his accusation.

4. He shows the falsehood of Eunomius' calumnious charge that the great Basil had said that "man was emptied to become man," and demonstrates that the "emptying" of the Only-begotten took place with a view to the restoration to life of the Man Who had suffered(4).

He asserts that we say that man has emptied Himself to become man, and that He Who by obedience humbled Himself to the form of the servant shared the form of men even before He took that form. No change has been made in the wording; we have simply transferred the very words from his speech to our own. Now if there is anything of this sort in our writings, for I call my master's writings ours) let no one blame our orator for calumny. I ask for all regard for the truth: and we ourselves will give evidence. But if there is nothing of all this in our writings, while his language not merely lays blame upon us, but is indignant and wrathful as if the waiter were clearly proved, calling us full of absurdity, nonsense, confusion, inconsistency, and so on, I am at a loss to see the right course to take. Just as men who are perplexed at the groundless rages of madmen can decide upon no plan to follow, so I myself can find no device to meet this perplexity. Our master says (for I will again recite his argument verbally), "He is not setting forth to us the mode of the Divine existence, but the terms which belong to the Incarnation." Our accuser starts from this point, and says that we maintain that man emptied Himself to become man! What community is there between one statement and the other? If we say that the Apostle has not set forth to us the mode of the Divine existence, but points by his phrase to the dispensation of the Passion, we are on this ground charged with speaking of the "emptying" of man to become man, and with saying that the "form of the servant" had pretemporal existence, and that the Man Who was born of Mary existed before the coming in the flesh! Well, I think it superfluous to spend time in discussing what is admitted, seeing that truth itself frees us from the charge. In a case, indeed, where one may have given the calumniators some handle against oneself, it is proper to resist accusers: but where there is no danger of being suspected of some absurd charge, the accusation becomes a proof, not of the false charge made against him who is calumniated, but of the madness of the accuser. As, however, in dealing with the charge of being ashamed of the Cross, we showed by our examination that the charge recoiled upon the accuser, so we shall show how this charge too returns upon those who make it, since it is they, and not we, who lay down the doctrine of the change of the Son from like lo like in the dispensation of the Passion. We will examine briefly, bringing them side by side, the statements of each party. We say that the Only-begotten God, having by His own agency brought all things into being, by Himself(5) has full power over all things, while the nature of man is also one of the things that were made by Him: and that when this had fallen away to evil, and come to be in the destruction of death, He by His own agency drew it up once more to immortal life, by means of the Man in whom He tabernacled, taking to Himself humanity in completeness, and that He mingled His life-giving power with our mortal and perishable nature, and changed, by the combination with Himself, our deadness to living grace and power. And this we declare to be the mystery of the Lord according to the flesh, that He Who is immutable came to be in that which is mutable, to the end that altering it for the better, and changing it from the worse, He might abolish the evil which is mingled with our mutable condition, destroying the evil in Himself. For "our God is a consuming fire(6)," by whom all the material of wickedness is done away. This is our statement. What does our accuser say? Not that He Who was immutable and uncreated was mingled with that which came into being by creation, and which had therefore suffered a change in the direction of evil; but he does say that He, being Himself created, came to that which was kindred and homogeneous with Himself, not coming from a transcendent nature to put on the lowlier nature by reason of His love to man, but becoming that very thing which He was.

For as regards the general character of the appellation, the name of "creature" is one, as predicated of all things that have come into bring from nothing, while the divisions into sections of the things which we contemplate as included in the term "creature", are separated one from the other by the variation of their properties: so that if He is created, and man is created. He was "emptied," to use Eunomius' phrase, to become Himself, and changed His place, not from the transcendent to the lowly, but from what is similar in kind to what (save in regard of the special character of body and the incorporeal) is similar in dignity. To whom now will the just vote of those who have to try our cause be given, or who will seem to them to be under the weight of these charges? he who says that the created was saved by the uncreated God, or he who refers the cause of our salvation to the creature? Surely the judgment of pious men is not doubt- rid. For any one who knows clearly the difference which there is between the created and the uncreated, (terms of which the divergence is marked by dominion and slavery. since the uncreated God, as the prophet says, "ruleth with His power for ever(7)," while all things in the creation are servants to Him, according to the voice of the same prophet, which says "all things serve Thee(8),") he, I say, who carefully considers these matters, surely cannot fail to recognize the person who makes the Only-begotten change from servitude to servitude. For if, according to Paul, the whole creation "is in bondage(9)," and if, according to Eunomius, the essential nature of the Only-begotten is created, our adversaries maintain, surely, by their doctrines, not that the master was mingled with the servant, but that a servant came to be among servants. As for our saying that the Lord was in the form of a servant before His presence in the flesh, that is just like charging us with saying that the stars are black and the sun misty, and the sky low, and water dry, and so on :--a man who does not maintain a charge on the ground of what he has heard, but makes up what seems good to him at his own sweet will, need not be sparing in making against us such charges as these. It is just the same thing for us to be called to account for the one set of charges as for the other, so far as concerns the fact that they have no basis for them in anything that we have said. How could one who says distinctly that the true Son was in the glory of the Father, insult the eternal glory of the Only-begotten by conceiving it to have been "in the form of a servant"? When our author thinks proper to speak evil of us, and at the same time takes care to present his case with some appearance of truth, it may perhaps not be superfluous or useless to rebut his unfounded accusations.

5. Thereafter he shows that there are not two Christs or two Lords, but one Christ and one Lord, and that the Divine nature, after mingling with the Human, preserved the properties of each nature without confusion, and declares that the operations are, by reason of the union, predicated of the two natures in common, in the sense that the Lord took upon Himself the sufferings of the servant, and the Humanity is glorified with Him in the honour that is the Lord's, and that by the power of the Divine Nature that is commingled with It, the Human Nature is made anew, conformably with that Divine Nature Itself.

His next charge too has its own absurdity of the same sort. For he reproaches us with saying that there are "two Christ," and "two Lords," without being able to make good his charge from our words, but employing falsehood at discretion to suit his fancy. Since, then, he deems it within his power to say what he likes, why does he utter his falsehood with such care about detail, and maintain that we speak but of two Christs? Let him say, if he likes, that we preach ten Christs, or ten times ten, or extend the number to a thousand, that he may handle his calumny more vigorously. For blasphemy is equally involved in the doctrine of two Christs, and in that of more, and the character of the two charges is also equally devoid of proof. When he shows, then, that we do speak of two Christs, let him have a verdict against us, as much as though he had given proof of ten thousand. But he says that he convicts us by our own statements. Well, let us look once more at those words of our master by means of which he thinks to raise his charges against us. He says "he" (he, that is, who says "Him God made Lord and Christ, this Jesus Whom ye crucified") "is not setting forth to us the mode of the Divine existence, but the terms which belong to the Incarnation ... laying stress by the demonstrative word on that in Him which was human and was seen by all." This is what he wrote. But whence has Eunomius managed by these words to bring on the stage his "two Christs"? Does saying that the demonstrative word lays stress on that which is visible, convey the proof of maintaining" two Christs"? Ought we (to avoid being charged with speaking of "two Highests") to deny the fact that by Him the Lord was highly exalted after His Passion? seeing that God the Word, Who was in the beginning, was Highest, and was also highly exalted after His Passion when He rose from the dead, as the Apostle says. We must of necessity choose one of two courses--either say that He was highly exalted after the Passion (which is just the same as saying that He was made Lord and Christ), and be impeached by Eunomius, or, if we avoid the accusation, deny the confession of the high exaltation of Him Who suffered.

Now at this point it seems right to put forward once more our accuser's statement in support of our own defence. We shall therefor repeat word for word the statement laid down by him, which supports our argument as follows:--"The blessed John," he says, "teaches us that God the Word, by Whom all things were made, has become incarnate, saying 'And the Word was made flesh.'" Does he understand what he is writing when he adds this to his own argument? I can hardly myself think that the same man can at once be aware of the meaning of these words and contend against our statement. For if any one examines the words carefully, he will find that there is no mutual conflict between what is said by us and what is said by him. For we both consider the dispensation in the flesh apart, and regard the Divine power in itself: and he, in like manner with ourselves, says that the Word that was in the beginning has been manifested in the flesh: yet no one ever charged him, nor does he charge himself, with preaching "two Words", Him Who was in the beginning, and Him Who was made flesh; for he knows, surely, that the Word is identical with the Word, He who appeared in the flesh with Him Who was with God. But the flesh was not identical with the Godhead, till this too was transformed to the Godhead, so that of necessity one set of attributes befits God the Word, and a different set of attributes befits the "form of the servant(1)." If, then, in view of such a confession, he does not reproach himself with the duality of Words, why are we falsely charged with dividing the object of oar faith into "two Christs"?--we, who say that He Who was highly exalted after His Passion, was made Lord and Christ by His union(2) with Him Who is verily Lord and Christ, knowing by what we have learnt that the Divine Nature is always one and the same, and with the same mode of existence, while the flesh in itself is that which reason and sense apprehend concerning it, but when mixed(3) with the Divine no longer remains in its own limitations and properties, but is taken up to that which is overwhelming and transcendent. Our contemplation, however, of the respective properties of the flesh and of the Godhead remains free from confusion, so long as each of these is contemplated by itself(4), as, for example, "the Word was before the ages, but the flesh came into being in the last times": but one could not reverse this statement, and say that the latter is pretemporal, or that the Word has come into being in the last times. The flesh is of a passible, the Word of an operative nature: and neither is the flesh capable of making the things that are, nor is the power possessed by the Godhead capable of suffering. The Word was in the beginning with God, the man was subject to the trial of death; and neither was the Human Nature from everlasting, nor the Divine Nature mortal: and all the rest of the attributes are contemplated in the same way. It is not the Human Nature that raises up Lazarus, nor is it the power that cannot suffer that weeps for him when he lies in the grave: the tear proceeds from the Man, the life from the true Life. It is not the Human Nature that feeds the thousands, nor is it omnipotent might that hastens to the fig-tree. Who is it that is weary with the journey, and Who is it that by His word made all the world subsist? What is the brightness of the glory, and what is that that was pierced with the nails? What form is it that is buffeted in the Passion, and what form is it that is glorified from everlasting? So much as this is clear, (even if one does not follow the argument into detail,) that the blows belong to the servant in whom the Lord was, the honours to the Lord Whom the servant compassed about, so that by reason of contact and the union of Natures the proper attributes of each belong to both(5), as the Lord receives the stripes of the servant, while the servant is glorified with the honour of the Lord; for this is why the Cross is said to be the Cross of the Lord of glory(6), and why every tongue confesses that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father(7).

But if we are to discuss the other points in the same way, let us consider what it is that dies, and what it is that destroys death; what it is that is renewed, and what it is that empties itself. The Godhead "empties" Itself that It may come within the capacity of the Human Nature, and the Human Nature is renewed by becoming Divine through its commixture(8) with the Divine. For as air is not retained in water when it is dragged down by some weighty body and left in the depth of the water, but rises quickly to its kindred element, while the water is often raised up together with the air in its upward rush, being moulded by the circle of air into a convex shape with a slight and membrane-like surface, so too, when the true Life that underlay the flesh sped up, after the Passion, to Itself, the flesh also was raised up with It, being forced upwards from corruption to incorruptibility by the Divine immortality. And as fire that lies in wood hidden below the surface is often unobserved by the senses of those who see, or even touch it, but is manifest when it blazes up, so too, at His death (which He brought about at His will, Who separated His soul from His Body, Who said to His own Father "Into Thy hands I commend My Spirit(9)," Who, as He says, "had power to lay it down and had power to take it again(1)"), He Who, because He is the Lord of glory, despised that which is shame among men, having concealed, as it were, the flame of His life in His bodily Nature, by the dispensation of His death(2), kindled and inflamed it once more by the power of His own Godhead, fostering into life that which had been brought to death, having infused with the infinity of His Divine power that humble first-fruits of our nature, made it also to be that which He Himself was--making the servile form to be Lord, and the Man born of Mary to be Christ, and Him Who was crucified through weakness to be Life and power, and making all that is piously conceived to be in God the Word to be also in that which the Word assumed, so that these attributes no longer seem to be in either Nature by way of division, but that the perishable Nature being, by its commixture with the Divine, made anew in conformity with the Nature that overwhelms it, participates in the power of the Godhead, as if one were to say that mixture makes a drop of vinegar mingled in the deep to be sea, by reason that the natural quality of Ibis liquid does not continue in the infinity of that which overwhelms it(3). This is our doctrine, which does not, as Eunomius charges against it, preach a plurality of Christs, but the union of the Man with the Divinity, and which calls by the name of "making" the transmutation of the Mortal to the Immortal, of the Servant to the Lord, of Sin(4) to Righteousness, of the Curse(5) to the Blessing, of the Man to Christ. What further have our slanderers left to say, to show that we preach "two Christs" in our doctrine, if we refuse to say that He Who was in the beginning from the Father uncreatedly Lord, and Christ, and the Word, and God, was "made," and declare that the blessed Peter was pointing briefly and incidentally to the mystery of the Incarnation, according to the meaning now explained, that the Nature which was crucified through weakness has Itself also, as we have said, become, by the overwhelming power of Him Who dwells in It, that which the Indweller Himself is in fact and in name, even Christ and Lord?


1. The sixth book shows that He Who came for man's salvation was not a mere man, as Eunomius, falsely slandering him, affirmed that the great Basil had said, but the Only-begotten Son of God, putting an human flesh, and becoming a mediator between God and man, on Whom we believe, as subject to suffering in the flesh, but impassible in His Godhead; and demonstrates the calumny of Eunomius.

But I perceive that while the necessities of the subject compelled me to follow this line of thought, I have lingered too long over this passage(1). I must now resume the train of his complaints, that we may pass by none of the charges brought against us without an answer. And first I propose that we should examine this point, that he charges us with asserting that an ordinary man has wrought the salvation of the world. For although this point has been to some extent already cleared up by the investigations we have made, we shall yet briefly deal with it once more, that the mind of those who are acting as our judges on this slanderous accusation may be entirely freed from misapprehension. So far are we from referring to an ordinary man the cause of this great and unspeakable grace, that even if any should refer so great a boon to Peter and Paul, or to an angel from heaven, we should say with Paul, "let him be anathema(2)." For Paul was not crucified for us, nor were we baptized into a human name(3). Surely the doctrine which our adversaries oppose to the truth is not thereby strengthened when we confess that the saving power of Christ is more potent than human nature(4):--yet it may seem to be so, for their aim is to maintain at all points the difference of the essence of the Son from that of the Father, and they strive to show the dissimilarity of essence not only by the contrast of the Generated with the Ungenerate, but also by the opposition of the passible to the impassible. And while this is more openly maintained in the last part of their argument, it is also clearly shown in their present discourse(5). For if he finds fault with those who refer the Passion to the Human Nature, his intention is certainly to subject to the Passion the Godhead Itself. For our conception being twofold, and admitting of two developments, accordingly as the Divinity or the Humanity is held to have been in a condition of suffering, an attack on one of these views is clearly a maintaining of the other. Accordingly, if they find fault with those who look upon the Passion as concerning the Man, they will clearly approve those who say that the Godhead of the Son was subject to passion, and the position which these last maintain becomes an argument in favour of their own absurd doctrine. For if, according to their statement, the Godhead of the Son suffers, while that of the Father is preserved in absolute impassibility, then the impassible Nature is essentially different from that which admits passion. Seeing, therefore, that the dictum before us, though, so far as it is limited by number of words, it is a short one, yet affords principles and hypotheses for every kind of doctrinal pravity, it would seem right that our readers should require in our reply not so much brevity as soundness. We, then, neither attribute our own salvation to a man, nor admit that the incorruptible and Divine Nature is capable of suffering and mortality: but since we must assuredly believe the Divine utterances which declare to us that the Word that was in the beginning was God(6), and that afterward the Word made flesh was seen upon the earth and conversed with men(7), we admit in our creed those conceptions which are consonant with the Divine utterance. For when we hear that He is Light, and Power, and Righteousness, and Life, and Truth, and that by Him all things were made, we account all these and such- like statements as things to be believed, referring them to God the Word: but when we hear of pain, of slumber, of need, of trouble, of bonds, of nails, of the spear, of blood, of wounds, of burial, of the sepulchre, and all else of this kind, even if they are somewhat opposed to what has previously been stated, we none the less admit them to be things to be believed, and true, having regard to the flesh; which we receive by faith as conjoined with the Word. For as it is not possible to contemplate the peculiar attributes of the flesh as existing in the Word that was in the beginning, so also on the other hand we may not conceive those which are proper to the Godhead as existing in the nature of the flesh. As, therefore, the teaching of the Gospel concerning our Lord is mingled, partly of lofty and Divine ideas, partly of those which are lowly and human, we assign every particular phrase accordingly to one or other of these Natures which we conceive in the mystery, that which is human to the Humanity, that which is lofty to the Godhead, and say that, as God, the Son is certainly impassible and incapable of corruption: and whatever suffering is asserted concerning Him in the Gospel, He assuredly wrought by means of His Human Nature which admitted of such suffering. For verily the Godhead works the salvation of the world by means of that body which encompassed It, in such wise that the suffering was of the body, but the operation was of God; and even if some wrest to the support of the opposite doctrine the words of the Apostle, "God spared not His own Sons,(8)," and, "God sent His own Son(9)," and other similar phrases which seem to refer, in the matter of the Passion, to the Divine Nature, and not to the Humanity, we shall none the less refuse to abandon sound doctrine, seeing that Paul himself declares to us more clearly the mystery of this subject. For he everywhere attributes to the Human element in Christ the dispensation of the Passion, when he says, "for since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead(1)," and, "God, sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, condemned sin in the flesh(9)" (for he says, "in the flesh," not "in the Godhead"); and "He was crucified through weakness" (where by "weakness" he means "the flesh"), "yet liveth by power(2)" (while he indicates by "power" the Divine Nature); and, "He died unto sin" (that is, with regard to the body), "but liveth unto God(3)" (that is, with regard to the Godhead, so that by these words it is established that, while the Man tasted death, the immortal Nature did not admit the suffering of death); and again; "He made Him to be sin for us, Who knew no sin(4)," giving once more the name of "sin" to the flesh.

2. Then he again mentions S. Peter's word, "made," and the passage in the Epistle to the Hebrews, which says that Jesus was made by God "an Apostle and High Priest": and, after giving a sufficient answer to the charges brought against him by Eunomius, shows that Eunomius himself supports Basil's arguments, and says that the Only-begotten Son, when He had put on the flesh, became Lord.

And although we make these remarks in passing, the parenthetic addition seems, perhaps, not less important than the main question before us. For since, when St. Peter says, "He made Him Lord and Christ(5)," and again, when the Apostle Paul says to the Hebrews that He made Him a priest(6), Eunomius catches at the word "made" as being applicable to His pre-temporal existence, and thinks thereby to establish his doctrine that the Lord is a thing made(7), let him now listen to Paul when he says, "He made Him to be sin for us, Who knew not sin(4)." If he refers the word "made," which is used of the Lord in the passages from the Epistle to the Hebrews, and from the words of Peter, to the pretemporal idea, he might fairly refer the word in that passage which says that God made Him to be sin, to the first existence of His essence, and try to show by this, as in the case of his other testimonies, that he was "made", so as to refer the word "made" to the essence, acting consistently with himself, and to discern sin in that essence. But if he shrinks from this by reason of its manifest absurdity, and argues that, by saying, "He made Him to be sin," the Apostle indicates the dispensation of the last times, let him persuade himself by the same train of reasoning that the word "made" refers to that dispensation in the other passages also.

Let us, however, return to the point from which we digressed; for we might gather together from the same Scripture countless other passages, besides those quoted, which bear upon the matter. And let no one think that the divine Apostle is divided against himself in contradiction, and affords by his own utterances matter for their contentions on either side to those who dispute upon the doctrines. For careful examination would find that his argument is accurately directed to one aim; and he is not halting in his opinions: for while he everywhere proclaims the combination of the Human with the Divine, he none the less discerns in each its proper nature, in the sense that while the human weakness is changed for the better by its communion with the imperishable, the Divine power, on the other hand, is not abased by its contact with the lowly form of nature. When therefore he says, "He spared not His own Son," he contrasts the true Son with the other sons, begotten, or exalted, or adopted(8) (those, I mean, who were brought into being at His command), marking the specialty of nature by the addition of "own." And, to the end that no one should connect the suffering of the Cross with the imperishable nature, he gives in other words a fairly distinct correction of such an error, when he calls Him "mediator between God and men(9)" and "man(9)," and "God(1)," that, from the fact that both are predicated of the one Being, the fit conception might be entertained concerning each Nature--concerning the Divine Nature, impassibility, concerning the Human Nature, the dispensation of the Passion. As his thought, then, divides that which in love to man was made one, but is distinguished in idea, he uses, when he is proclaiming that nature which transcends and surpasses all intelligence, the more exalted order of names, calling Him "God over all(2)," "the great God(3)," "the power" of God, and "the wisdom" of God(4), and the like; but when he is alluding to all that experience of suffering which, by reason of our weakness, was necessarily assumed with our nature, he gives to the union of the Natures(5) that name which is derived from ours, and calls Him Man, not by this word placing Him Whom he is setting forth to us on a common level with the rest of nature, but so that orthodoxy is protected as regards each Nature, in the sense that the Human Nature is glorified by His assumption of it, and the Divine is not polluted by Its condescension, but makes the Human element subject to sufferings, while working, through Its Divine power, the resurrection of that which suffered. And thus the experience of death is not(6) referred to Him Who had communion in our passible nature by reason of the union with Him of the Man, while at the same time the exalted and Divine names descend to the Man, so that He Who was manifested upon the Cross is called even "the Lord of glory(7)," since the majesty implied in these names is transmitted from the Divine to the Human by the commixture of Its Nature with that Nature which is lowly. For this cause he describes Him in varied and different language, at one time as Him Who came down from heaven, at another time as Him Who was born of woman, as God from eternity, and Man in the last days; thus too the Only-begotten God is held to be impassible, and Christ to be capable of suffering; nor does his discourse speak falsely in these opposing statements, as it adapts in its conceptions to each Nature the terms that belong to it. If then these are the doctrines which we have learnt from inspired teaching, how do we refer the cause of our salvation to an ordinary man? and if we declare the word "made" employed by the blessed Peter to have regard not to the pre-temporal existence, but to the new dispensation of the Incarnation, what has this to do with the charge against us? For this great Apostle says that that which was seen in the form of the servant has been made, by being assumed, to be that which He Who assumed it was in His own Nature. Moreover, in the Epistle to the Hebrews we may learn the same truth from Paul, when he says that Jesus was made an Apostle and High Priest by God, "being faithful to him that made Him so(8)." For in that passage too, in giving the name of High Priest to Him Who made with His own Blood the priestly propitiation for our sins, he does not by the word "made" declare the first existence of the Only- begotten, but says "made" with the intention of representing that grace which is commonly spoken of in connection with the appointment of priests. For Jesus, the great High Priest (as Zechariah says(9)), Who offered up his own lamb, that is, His own Body, for the sin of the world; Who, by reason of the children that arc partakers of flesh and blood, Himself also in like manner took part with them in blood(1) (not in that He was in the beginning, being the Word and God, and being in the form of God, and equal with God, but in that He emptied Himself in the form of the servant, and offered an oblation and sacrifice for us), He, I say, became a High Priest many generations later, after the order of Melchisedech(2). Surely a reader who has more than a casual acquaintance with the discourse to the Hebrews knows the mystery of this matter. As, then, in that passage He is said to have been made Priest and Apostle, so here He is said to have been made Lord and Christ,--the latter for the dispensation on our behalf, the former by the change and transformation of the Human to the Divine (for by "making" the Apostle means "making anew"). Thus is manifest the knavery of our adversaries, who insolently wrest the words referring to the dispensation to apply them to the pretemporal existence. For we learn from the Apostle not to know Christ in the same manner now as before, as Paul thus speaks, "Yea, though we have known Christ after the flesh, yet now know we Him no more(3)," in the sense that the one knowledge manifests to us His temporary dispensation, the other His eternal existence. Thus our discourse has made no inconsiderable answer to his charges:--that we neither hold two Christs nor two Lords, that we are not ashamed of the Cross, that we do not glorify a mere man as having suffered for the world, that we assuredly do not think that the word "made" refers to the formation of the essence. But, such being our view, our argument has no small support from our accuser himself, where in the midst of his discourse he employs his tongue in a flourishing onslaught upon us, and produces this sentence among others: "This, then, is the conflict that Basil wages against himself, and he clearly appears neither to have 'applied his own mind to the intention of the Apostles,' nor to be able to preserve the sequence of his own arguments; for according to them he must, if he is conscious of their irreconcilable character, admit that the Word Who was in the beginning and was God became Lord," or he fits together "statements that are mutually conflicting." Why, this is actually our statement which Eunomius repeats, who says that "the Word that was in the beginning and was God became Lord." For, being what He was, God, and Word, and Life, and Light, and Grace, and Truth, and Lord, and Christ, and every name exalted and Divine, He did become, in the Man assumed by Him, Who was none of these, all else which the Word was and among the rest did become Lord and Christ, according to the teaching of Peter, and according to the confession of Eunomius;--not in the sense that the Godhead acquired anything by way of advancement, but (all exalted majesty being contemplated in the Divine Nature) He thus becomes Lord and Christ, not by arriving at any addition of grace in respect of His Godhead (for the Nature of the Godhead is acknowledged to be lacking in no good), but by bringing the Human Nature to theft participation in the Godhead which is signified by the terms "Christ" and "Lord."

3. He then gives a notable explanation of the saying of the Lord to Philip, "He that hath seen Me hath seen the Father;" and herein he excellently discusses the suffering of the Lord in His love to man, and the impassibility, creative power, and providence of the Father, and thee composite nature of men, and their resolution into the elements of which they were composed.

Sufficient defence has been offered on these points, and as for that which Eunomius says by way of calumny against our doctrine, that "Christ was emptied to become Himself" there has been sufficient discussion in what has been said above, where he has been shown to be attributing to our doctrine his own blasphemy.(4) For it is not one who confesses that the immutable Nature has put on the created and perishable, who speaks of the transition from like to like, but one who conceives that there is no change from the majesty of Nature to that which is more lowly. For if, as their doctrine asserts, He is created, and man is created also, the wonder of the doctrine disappears, and there is nothing marvellous in what is alleged, since the created nature comes to be in itself(5). But we who have learnt from prophecy of "the change of the right hand of the Most High(6),"--and by the "Right Hand" of the Father we understand that Power of God, which made all things, which is the Lord (not in the sense of depending upon Him as a part upon a whole, but as being indeed from Hint, and yet contemplated in individual existence),--say thus: that neither does the Right Hand vary from Him Whose Right Hand It is, in regard to the idea of Its Nature, nor can any other change in It be spoken of besides the dispensation of the Flesh. For verily the Right Hand of God was God Himself; manifested in the flesh, seen through that same flesh by those whose sight was clear; as He did the work of the Father, being, both in fact and in thought, the Right Hand of God, yet being changed, in respect of the veil of the flesh by which He was surrounded, as regarded that which was seen, from that which He was by Nature, as a subject of contemplation. Therefore He says to Philip, who was gazing only at that which was changed, "Look through that which is changed to that which is unchangeable, and if thou seest this, thou hast seen that Father Himself, Whom thou seekest to see; for he that hath seen Me--not Him Who appears in a state of change, but My very self, Who am in the Father--will have seen that Father Himself in Whom I am, because the very same character of Godhead is beheld in both(7)." If, then, we believe that the immortal and impossible and uncreated Nature came to be in the passible Nature of the creature, and conceive the "change" to consist in this, on what grounds are we charged with saying that He "was emptied to become Himself," by those who keep prating their own statements about our doctrines? For the participation of the created with the created is no "change of the Right Hand." To say that the Right Hand of the uncreated Nature is created belongs to Eunomius alone, and to those who adopt such opinions as he holds. For the man with an eye that looks on the truth will discern the Right Hand of the Highest to be such as he sees the Highest to be,--Uncreated of Uncreated, Good of Good, Eternal of Eternal without prejudice to Its eternity by Its being in the Father by way of generation. Thus our accuser has unawares been employing against us reproaches that properly fall upon himself.

But with reference(8) to those who stumble at the idea of "passion," and on this ground maintain the diversity of the Essences,--arguing that the Father, by reason of the exaltation of His Nature, does not admit passion, and that the Son on the other hand condescended, by reason of defect and divergence, to the partaking of His sufferings,--I wish to add these remarks to what has been already said:--That nothing is truly "passion" which does not tend to sin nor would one strictly call by the name of "passion" the necessary routine of nature, regarding the composite nature as it goes on its course mankind of order and sequence. For the mutual concurrence of heterogeneous elements in the formation of our body is a kind of a combination harmoniously conjoined out of several dissimilar elements; but when, at the due time, the tie is loosed which bound together this concurrence of the elements, the combined nature is once more dissolved into the elements of which it was composed. This then is rather a work than a passion of the nature(9). For we give the name of "passion" only to that which is opposed to the virtuous unimpassioned state and of this we believe that He Who granted us salvation was at all times devoid, Who "was in all points tempted like as we are yet without sin(1)." Of that, at least, which is truly passion, which is a diseased condition of the will, He was not a partaker; for it says "He did no sin, neither was guile found in His mouth(2)"; but the peculiar attributes of our nature, which, by a kind of customary abuse of terms, are called by the same name of "passion," --of these, we confess, the Lord did partake,--of birth, nourishment, growth, of sleep and toil, and all those natural dispositions which the, soul is wont to experience with regard to bodily inconveniences,--the desire of that which is lacking, when the longing passes from the body to the soul, the sense of pain, the dread of death, and all the like, save only such as, if followed, lead to sin. As, then, when we perceive His power extending through all things in heaven, and air, and earth, and sea, whatever there is in heaven, whatever there is beneath the earth, we believe that He is universally present, and yet do not say that He is any of those things in which He is (for He is not the Heaven, Who has marked it out with His enfolding span, nor is He the earth, Who upholds the circle of the earth, nor yet is He the water, Who encompasses the liquid nature), so neither do we say that in passing through those sufferings of the flesh of which we speak He was "subject to passion," but, as we say that He is the cause of all things that are, that He holds the universe in His grasp, that He directs all that is in motion and keeps upon a settled foundation all that is stationary, by the unspeakable power of His own majesty, so we say that He was born among us for the cure of the disease of sin, adapting the exercise of His healing power in a manner corresponding to the suffering, applying the healing in that way which He knew to be for the good of that part of the creation which He knew to be in infirmity. And as it was expedient that He should heal the sufferings by touch, we say that He so healed it; yet is He not, because He is the Healer of our infirmity, to be deemed on this account to have been Himself passible. For even in the case of men, ordinary use does not allow us to affirm such a thing. We do not say that one who touches a sick man to heal him is himself partaker of the infirmity, but we say that he does give the sick man the boon of a return to health, and does not partake of the infirmity: for the suffering does not touch him, it is he who touches the disease. Now if he who by his art works any good in men's bodies is not called dull or feeble, but is called a lover of men and a benefactor and the like, why do they slander the dispensation to usward as being mean and inglorious, and use it to maintain that the essence of the Son is "divergent by way of inferiority," on the ground that the Nature of the Father is superior to sufferings, while that of the Son is not pure from passion? Why, if the aim of the dispensation of the Incarnation was not that the Son should be subject to suffering, but that He should be manifested as a lover of men, while the Father also is undoubtedly a lover of men, it follows that if one will but regard the aim, the Son is in the same case with the Father. But if it was not the Father Who wrought the destruction of death, marvel not,--for all judgment also He hath committed unto the Son, Himself judging no man(3); not doing all things by the Son for the reason that He is unable either to save the lost or judge the sinner, but because He does these things too by His own Power, by which He works all things. Then they who were saved by the Son were saved by the Power of the Father, and they who are judged by Him undergo judgment by the Righteousness of God. For "Christ," as the Apostle says, "is the Righteousness of God(4)," which is revealed by the Gospel; and whether you look at the world as a whole, or at the parts of the world which make up that complete whole, all these are works of the Father, in that they are works of His Power; and thus the word which says both that the Father made all things, and that none of these things that are came into being without the Son, speaks truly on both points; for the operation of the Power bears relation to Him Whose Power It is. Thus, since the Son is the Power of the Father, all the works of the Son are works of the Father. That He entered upon the dispensation of the Passion not by weakness of nature but by the power of His will, one might bring countless passages of the Gospel to show; but these, as the matter is clear, I will pretermit, that my discourse may not be prolonged by dwelling on points that are admitted. If, then, that which comes to pass is evil, we have to separate from that evil not the Father only, but the Son also; but if the saving of them that were lost is good, and if that which took place is not "passion(5)," but love of men, why do you alienate from our thanksgiving for our salvation the Father, Who by His own Power, which is Christ, wrought for men their freedom from death?

4. Then returning to the words of Peter," God made Him Lord and Christ," he skilfully explains it by many arguments, and her in shows Eumonius as an advocate of the orthodox doctrine, and concludes the book by showing that the Divine and Human names are applied, by reason of the commixture, to either Nature.

But we must return once more to our vehement writer of speeches, and take up again that severe invective of his against ourselves. He makes it a complaint against us that we deny that the Essence of the Son has been made, as contradicting the words of Peter, "He made Him Lord and Christ, this Jesus Whom ye crucified(6)"; and he is very forcible in his indignation and abuse upon this matter, and moreover maintains certain points by which he thinks that he refutes our doctrine. Let us see, then, the force of his attempts. "Who, pray, ye most reckless of men," he says, "when he has the form of a servant, takes the form of a servant?" "No reasonable man," shall be our reply to him, "would use language of this kind, save such as may be entirely alien from the hope of Christians. But to this class you belong, who charge us with recklessness because we do not admit the Creator to be created. For if the Holy Spirit does not lie, when He says by the prophet, 'All things serve Thee(7),' and the whole creation is in servitude, and the Son is, as you say(8), created, He is clearly a fellow-servant with all things, being degraded by His partaking of creation to partake also of servitude. And Him Who is in servitude you will surely invest with the servant's form: for you will not, of course, be ashamed of the aspect of servitude when you acknowledge that He is a servant by nature. Who now is it, I pray, my most keen rhetorician, who transfers the Son from the servile form to another form of a servant? he who claims for Him uncreated I being, and thereby proves that He is no servant, or you, rather, who continually cry that the Son is the servant of the Father, and was actually under His dominion before He took the servant's form? I ask for no other judges; I leave the vote on these questions in your own hands. For I suppose that no one is so shameless in his dealings with the truth as to oppose acknowledged facts out of sheer impudence. What we have said is clear to any one, that by the peculiar attributes of servitude is marked that which is by nature servile, and to be created is an attribute proper to servitude. Thus one who asserts that He, being a servant, took upon Him our form, is surely the man who transfers the Only-begotten from servitude to servitude."

He tries, however, to fight against our words, and says, a little further on (for I will pass over at present his intermediate remarks, as they have been more or less fully discussed in my previous arguments), when he charges us with being "bold in saying or thinking things uncontrivable," and calls us "most miserable(9),"--he adds, I say, this:--"For if it is not of the Word Who was in the beginning and was God that the blessed Peter speaks, but of Him Who was 'seen,' and Who 'emptied Himself,' as Basil says, and if the man Who was 'seen' 'emptied Himself' to take 'the form of a servant,' and He Who 'emptied Himself' to take the form of a servant,' 'emptied Himself' to come into being as man, then the man who was 'seen' 'emptied himself,' to come into being as man." It may be that the judgment of my readers has immediately detected from the above citation the knavery, and, at the same time, the folly of the argument he maintains: yet a brief refutation of what he says shall be subjoined on our side, not so much to overthrow his blundering sophism, which indeed is overthrown by itself for those who have ears to hear, as to avoid the appearance of passing his allegation by without discussion, under the pretence of contempt for the worthlessness of his argument. Let us accordingly look at the point in this way. What are the Apostle's words? "Be it known," he says, "that God made Him Lord and Christ(1)." Then, as though some one had asked him on whom such a grace was bestowed, he points as it were with his finger to the subject, saying, "this Jesus, Whom ye crucified." What does Basil say upon this? That the demonstrative word declares that that person was made Christ, Who had been crucified by the hearers;--for he says, "ye crucified," and it was likely that those who had demanded the murder that was done upon Him were hearers of the speech; for the time from the crucifixion to the discourse of Peter was not long. What, then, does Eunomius advance in answer to this? "If it is not of the Word Who was in the beginning and was God that the blessed Peter speaks, but of Him Who was 'seen,' and Who 'emptied Himself,' as Basil says, and if the man who was 'seen' 'emptied himself' to take 'the form of a servant' "-- Hold! who says this, that the man who was seen emptied himself again to take the form of a servant? or who maintains that the suffering of the Cross took place before the manifestation in the flesh? The Cross did not precede the body, nor the body "the form of the servant." But God is manifested in the flesh, while the flesh that displayed God in itself, after having by itself fulfilled the great mystery of the Death, is transformed by commixture to that which is exalted and Divine, becoming Christ and Lord, being transferred and changed to that which He was, Who manifested Himself in that flesh. But if we should say this, our champion of the truth maintains once more that we say that He Who was shown upon the Cross "emptied Himself" to become another man, putting his sophism together as follows in its wording:--"If," quoth he, "the man who was 'seen' 'emptied himself' to take the 'form of a servant,' and He Who 'emptied Himself' to take the 'form of a servant,' 'emptied Himself' to come into being as man, then the man who was 'seen' 'emptied himself' to come into being as man."

How well he remembers the task before him! how much to the point is the conclusion of his argument! Basil declares that the Apostle said that the man who was "seen" was made Christ and Lord, and this clear and quick- witted over-turner of his statements says, "If Peter does not say that the essence of Him Who was in the beginning was made, the man who was 'seen' 'emptied himself' to take the 'form of a servant,' and He Who 'emptied Himself' to take the 'form of a servant, emptied Himself to become man." We are conquered, Eunomius, by this invincible wisdom! The fact that the Apostle's discourse refers to Him Who was "crucified through weakness(2)" is forsooth powerfully disproved when we learn that if we believe this to be so, the man who was "seen" again becomes another, "emptying Himself" for another coming into being of man. Will you never cease jesting against what should be secure from such attempts? will you not blush at destroying by such ridiculous sophisms the awe that hedges the Divine mysteries? will you not turn now, if never before, to know that the Only-begotten God, Who is in the bosom of the Father, being Word, and King, and Lord, and all that is exalted in word and thought, needs not to become anything that is good, seeing that He is Himself the fulness of all good things? What then is that, by changing into which He becomes what He was not before? Well, as He Who knew not sin becomes sin(3), that He may take away the sin of the world, so on the other hand the flesh which received the Lord becomes Christ and Lord, being transformed by the commixture into that which it was not by nature: whereby We learn that neither would God have been manifested in the flesh, had not the Word been made flesh, nor would the human flesh that compassed Him about have been transformed to what is Divine, had not that which was apparent to the senses become Christ and Lord. But they treat the simplicity of what we preach with contempt, who use their syllogisms to trample on the being of God, and desire to show that He Who by creation brought into being all things that are, is Himself a part of creation, and wrest, to assist them in such an effort to establish their blasphemy, the words of Peter, who said to the Jews, "Be it known to all the house of Israel that God made Him Lord and Christ, this Jesus Whom ye crucified(4)." This is the proof they present for the statement that the essence of the Only-begotten God is created! What? tell me, were the Jews, to whom the words were spoken, in existence before the ages? was the Cross before the world? was Pilate before all creation? was Jesus in existence first, and after that the Word? was the flesh more ancient than the Godhead? did Gabriel bring glad tidings to Mary before the world was? did not the Man that was in Christ take beginning by way of birth in the days of Caesar Augustus, while the Word that was God in the beginning is our King, as the prophet testifies, before all ages(5)? See you not what confusion you bring upon the matter, turning, as the phrase goes, things upside down? It was the fiftieth day after the Passion, when Peter preached his sermon to the Jews and said, "Him Whom ye crucified, God made Christ and Lord." Do you not mark the order of his saying? which stands first, which second in his words? He did not say, "Him Whom God made Lord, ye crucified," but, "Whom ye crucified, Him God made Christ and Lord": so that it is clear from this that Peter is speaking, not of what was before the ages, but of what was after the dispensation.

How comes it, then, that you fail to see that the whole conception of your argument on the subject is being overthrown, and go on making yourself ridiculous with your childish web of sophistry, saying that, if we believe that He who was apparent to the senses has been made by God to be Christ and Lord, it necessarily follows that the Lord once more "emptied Himself" anew to become Man, and underwent a second birth? What advantage does your doctrine get from this? How does what you say show the King of creation to be created? For my own part I assert on the other side that our view is supported by those who contend against us, and that the rhetorician, in his exceeding attention to the matter, has failed to see that in pushing, as he supposed, the argument to an absurdity, he is fighting on the side of those whom he attacks, with the very weapons he uses for their overthrow. For if we are to believe that the change of condition in the case of Jesus was from a lofty state to a lowly one, and if the Divine and uncreated Nature alone transcends the creation, he will, perhaps, when he thoroughly surveys his own argument, come over to the ranks of truth, and agree that the Uncreated came to be in the created, in His love for man. But if he imagines that he demonstrates the created character of the Lord by showing that He, being God, took part in human nature, he will find many such passages to establish the same opinion which carry out their support of his argument in a similar way. For since He was the Word and was God, and "afterwards," as the prophet says, "was seen upon earth and conversed with men(6)," He will hereby be proved to be one of the creatures! And if this is held to be beside the question, similar passages too are not quite akin to the subject. For in sense it is just the same to say that the Word that was in the beginning was manifested to men through the flesh, and to say that being in the form of God He put on the form of a servant: and if one of these statements gives no help for the establishment of his blasphemy, he must needs give up the remaining one also. He is kind enough, however, to advise us to abandon our error, and to point out the truth which He himself maintains. He tells us that the Apostle Peter declares Him to have been made Who was in the beginning the Word and God. Well, if he were making up dreams for our amusement, and giving us information about the prophetic interpretation of the visions of sleep, there might be no risk in allowing him to set forth the riddles of his imagination at his pleasure. But when he tells us that he is explaining the Divine utterances, it is no longer safe for us to leave him to interpret the words as he likes. What does the Scripture say? "God made Lord and Christ this Jesus whom ye crucified(7)." When everything, then, is found to concur--the demonstrative word denoting Him Who is spoken of by the Name of His Humanity, the charge against those who were stained with blood-guiltiness, the suffering of the Cross--our thought necessarily turns to that which was apparent to the senses. But he asserts that while Peter uses these words it is the pretemporal existence that is indicated by the word "made"(8). Well, we may safely allow nurses and old wives to jest with children, and to lay down the meaning of dreams as they choose: but when inspired Scripture is set before us for exposition, the great Apostle forbids us to have recourse to old wives' tattle(9). When I hear "the Cross" spoken of, I understand the Cross, and when I hear mention of a human name, I understand the nature which that name connotes. So when I hear from Peter that "this" one was made Lord and Christ, I do not doubt that he speaks of Him Who had been before the eyes of men, since the saints agree with one another in this matter as well as in others. For, as he says that He Who was crucified has been made Lord, so Paul also says that He was "highly exalted(1)," after the Passion and the Resurrection, not being exalted in so far forth as He is God. For what height is there more sublime than the Divine height, that he should say God was exalted thereunto? But he means that the lowliness of the Humanity was exalted, the word, I suppose, indicating the assimilation and union of the Man Who was assumed to the exalted state of the Divine Nature. And even if one were to allow him licence to misinterpret the Divine utterance, not even so will his argument conclude in accordance with the aim of his heresy. For be it granted that Peter does say of Him Who was in the beginning, "God made Him Lord and Christ, this Jesus Whom ye crucified," we shall find that even so his blasphemy does not gain any strength against the truth. "God made Him," he says, "Lord and Christ." To which of the words are we to refer the word made? with which of those that are employed in this sentence are we to connect the word? There are three before us:--" this," and "Lord," and "Christ." With which of these three will he construct the word "made"? No one is so bold against the truth as to deny that "made "has reference to "Christ" and "Lord"; for Peter says that He, being already whatever He was, was "made Christ and Lord" by the Father.

These words are not mine: they are those of him who fights against the Word. For he says, in the very passage that is before us for examination, exactly thus:--"The blessed Peter speaks of Him Who was in the beginning and was God, and expounds to us that it was He Who became Lord and Christ." Eunomius, then, says that He Who was whatsoever He was became Lord and Christ, as the history of David tells us that he, being the son of Jesse, and a keeper of the flocks, was anointed to be king: not that the anointing then made him to be a man, but that he, being what he was by his own nature, was transformed from an ordinary man to a king. What follows? Is it thereby the more established that the essence of the Son was made, if, as Eunomius says, God made Him, when He was in the beginning and was God, both Lord and Christ? For Lordship is not a name of His being but of His being in authority, and the appellation of Christ indicates His kingdom, while the idea of His kingdom is one, and that of His Nature another. Suppose that Scripture does say that these things took place with regard to the Son of God. Let us then consider which is the more pious and the more rational view. Which can we allowably say is made partaker of superiority by way of advancement--God or man? Who has so childish a mind as to suppose that the Divinity passes on to perfection by way of addition? But as to the Human Nature, such a supposition is not unreasonable, seeing that the words of the Gospel clearly ascribe to our Lord increase in respect of His Humanity: for it says, "Jesus increased in wisdom and stature and favour(2)." Which, then, is the more reasonable suggestion to derive from the Apostle's words?--that He Who was God in the beginning became Lord by way of advancement, or that the lowliness of the Human Nature was raised to the height of majesty as a result of its communion with the Divine? For the prophet David also, speaking in the person of the Lord, says, "I am established as king by Him(3)," with a meaning very close to "I was made Christ:" and again, in the person of the Father to the Lord, he says, "Be Thou Lord in the midst of Thine enemies(4)," with the same meaning as Peter, "Be Thou made Lord of Thine enemies." As, then, the establishment of His kingdom does not signify the formation of His essence, but the advance to His dignity, and He Who bids Him "be Lord" does not command that which is non-existent to come into being at that particular time, but gives to Him Who is the rule over those who are disobedient,--so also the blessed Peter, when he says that one has been made Christ (that is, king of all) adds the word "Him" to distinguish the idea both from the essence and from the attributes contemplated in connection with it. For He made Him what has been declared when He already was that which He is. Now if it were allowable to assert of the transcendent Nature that it became anything by way of advancement, as a king from being an ordinary man, or lofty from being lowly, or Lord from being servant, it might be proper to apply Peter's words to the Only-begotten. But since the Divine Nature, whatever it is believed to be, always remains the same, being above all augmentation and incapable of diminution, we are absolutely compelled to refer his saying to the Humanity. For God the Word is now, and always remains, that which He was in the beginning, always King, always Lord, always God and Most High, not having become any of these things by way of advancement, but being in virtue of His Nature all that He is declared to be, while on the other hand He Who was, by being assumed, elevated from Man to the Divinity, being one thing and becoming another, is strictly and truly said to have become Christ and Lord. For He made Him to be Lord from being a servant, to be King from being a subject, to be Christ from being in subordination. He highly exalted that which was lowly, and gave to Him that had the Human Name that Name which is above every name(5). And thus came to pass that unspeakable mixture and conjunction of human littleness commingled with Divine greatness, whereby even those names which are great and Divine are properly applied to the Humanity, while on the other hand the Godhead is spoken of by human names(6). For it is the same Person who both has the Name which is above every name, and is worshipped by all creation in the human Name of Jesus. For he says, "at the name of Jesus every knee shall bow, of things in heaven and things in earth, and things under the earth, and every tongue shall confess that Jesus is Lord, to the glory of God the Father(7)." But enough of these matters.


1. The seventh book shows from various statements made to the Corinthians and to the Hebrews, and from the words of the Lord, that the word "Lord" is not expressive of essence, according to Eunomius' exposition, but of dignity. And after many notable remarks concerning "'the Spirit and the Lord, he shows that Eunomius, from his own words, is found to argue in favour of orthodoxy, though without intending it, and to be struck by his own shafts.

SINCE, however, Eunomius asserts that the word "Lord" is used in reference to the essence and not to the dignity of the Only-begotten, and cites as a witness to this view the Apostle, when he says to the Corinthians, "Now the Lord is the Spirit(1)," it may perhaps be opportune that we should not pass over even this error on his part without correction. He asserts that the word "Lord" is significative of essence, and by way of proof of this assumption he brings up the passage above mentioned. "The Lord," it says, "is the Spirit(1)." But our friend who interprets Scripture at his own sweet will calls "Lordship" by the name of "essence," and thinks to bring his statement to proof by means of the words quoted. Well, if it had been said by Paul, "Now the Lord is essence," we too would have concurred in his argument. But seeing that the inspired writing on the one side says, "the Lord is the Spirit," and Eunomius says on the other, "Lordship is essence," I do not know where he finds support for his statement, unless he is prepared to say again(2) that the word "Spirit" stands in Scripture for "essence." Let us consider, then, whether the Apostle anywhere, in his use of the term "Spirit," employs that word to indicate "essence." He says, "The Spirit itself beareth witness with our Spirit(3)," and "no one knoweth the things of a man save the Spirit of man which is in him(4)," and "the letter killeth, but the Spirit giveth life(5)," and "if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live(6)," and "if we live in the Spirit let us also walk in the Spirit(7)." Who indeed could count the utterances of the Apostle on this point? and in them we nowhere find "essence" signified by this word. For he who says that "the Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit," signifies nothing else than the Holy Spirit Which comes to be in the mind of the faithful; for in many other passages of his writings he gives the name of spirit to the mind, on the reception by which of the communion of the Spirit the recipients attain the dignity of adoption. Again, in the passage, "No one knoweth the things of a man save the spirit of man which is in him," if "man" is used of the essence, and "spirit" likewise, it will follow from the phrase that the man is maintained to be of two essences. Again, I know not how he who says that "the letter killeth, but the Spirit giveth life," sets "essence" in opposition to "letter"; nor, again, how this writer imagines that when Paul says that we ought "through the Spirit" to destroy "the deeds of the body," he is directing the signification of "spirit" to express "essence"; while as for "living in the Spirit," and "walking in the Spirit," this would be quite unintelligible if the sense of the word "Spirit" referred to "essence." For in what else than in essence do all we who are alive partake of life?--thus when the Apostle is laying down advice for us on this matter that we should "live in essence," it is as though he said "partake of life by means of yourselves, and not by means of others." If then it is not possible that this sense can be adopted in any passage, how can Eunomius here once more imitate the interpreters of dreams, and bid us to take "spirit." for "essence," to the end that he may arrive in due syllogistic form at his conclusion that the word "Lord" is applied to the essence?--for if "spirit" is "essence" (he argues), and "the Lord is Spirit," the "Lord" is clearly found to be "essence." How incontestable is the force of this attempt! How can we evade or resolve this irrefragable necessity of demonstration? The word "Lord," he says, is spoken of the essence. How does he maintain it? Because the Apostle says, "The Lord is the Spirit." Well, what has this to do with essence? He gives us the further instruction that "spirit" is put for "essence. These are the arts of his demonstrative method! These are the results of his Aristotelian science! This is why, in your view, we are so much to be pitied, who are uninitiated in this wisdom! and you of course are to be deemed happy, who track out the truth by a method like this--that the Apostle's meaning was such that we are to suppose "the Spirit" was put by him for the Essence of the Only-begotten!

Then how will you make it fit with what follows? For when Paul says, "Now the Lord is the Spirit," he goes on to say, "and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty." If then "the Lord is the Spirit," and "Spirit" means "essence," what are we to understand by "the essence of the essence"? He speaks again of another Spirit of the Lord Who is the Spirit,- -that is to say, according to your interpretation, of another essence. Therefore in your view the Apostle, when he writes expressly of "the Lord the Spirit," and of "the Spirit of the Lord," means nothing else than an essence of an essence. Well, let Eunomius make what he likes of that which is written; what we understand of the matter is as follows. The Scripture, "given by inspiration of God," as the Apostle calls it, is the Scripture of the Holy Spirit, and its intention is the profit of men. For "every scripture," he says, "is given by inspiration of God and is profitable"; and the profit is varied and multiform, as the Apostle says--" for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness(8)." Such a boon as this, however, is not within any man's reach to lay hold of, but the Divine intention lies hid under the body of the Scripture, as it were under a veil, some legislative enactment or some historical narrative being cast over the truths that are contemplated by the mind. For this reason, then, the Apostle tells us that those who look upon the body of the Scripture have "a veil upon their heart(9)," and are not able to look upon the glory of the spiritual law, being hindered by the veil that has been cast over the face of the law-giver. Wherefore he says, "the letter killeth, but the Spirit giveth life(5)," showing that often the obvious interpretation, if it be not taken according to the proper sense, has an effect contrary to that life which is indicated by the Spirit, seeing that this lays down for all men the perfection of virtue in freedom from passion, while the history contained in the writings sometimes embraces the exposition even of facts incongruous, and is understood, so to say, to concur with the passions of our nature, whereto if any one applies himself according to the obvious sense, he will make the Scripture a doctrine of death. Accordingly, he says that over the perceptive powers of the souls of men who handle what is written in too corporeal a manner, the veil is cast; but for those who turn their contemplation to that which is the object of the intelligence, there is revealed, bared, as it were, of a mask, the glory that underlies the letter. And that which is discovered by this more exalted perception he says is the Lord, which is the Spirit. For he says, "when it shall turn to the Lord the veil shall be taken away: now the Lord is the Spirit(1)." And in so saying he makes a distinction of contrast between the lordship of the spirit and the bondage of the letter; for as that which gives life is opposed to that which kills, so he contrasts "the Lord" with bondage. And that we may not be under any confusion when we are instructed concerning the Holy Spirit (being led by the word "Lord" to the thought of the Only-begotten), for this reason he guards the word by repetition, both saying that "the Lord is the Spirit," and making further mention of "the Spirit of the Lord," that the supremacy of His Nature may be shown by the honour implied in lordship, while at the same time he may avoid confusing in his argument the individuality of His Person. For he who calls Him both "Lord" and "Spirit of the Lord," teaches us to conceive of Him as a separate individual besides the Only-begotten; just as elsewhere he speaks of "the Spirit of Christ(2)," employing fairly and in its mystic sense this very term which is piously employed in the system of doctrine according to the Gospel tradition. Thus we, the "most miserable of all men," being led onward by the Apostle in the mysteries, pass from the letter that killeth to the Spirit that giveth life, learning from Him Who was in Paradise initiated into the unspeakable mysteries, that all things the Divine Scripture says are utterances of the Holy Spirit. For "well did the Holy Spirit prophesy(3),"--this he says to the Jews in Rome, introducing the words of Isaiah; and to the Hebrews, alleging the authority of the Holy Spirit in the words, "wherefore as saith the Holy Spirit(4)," he adduces the words of the Psalm which are spoken at length in the person of God; and from the Lord Himself we learn the same thing,-- that David declared the heavenly mysteries not "in" himself (that is, not speaking according to human nature). For how could any one, being but man, know the supercelestial converse of the Father with the Son? But being "in the Spirit" he said that the Lord spoke to the Lord those words which He has uttered. For if, He says, "David in the Spirit calls him Lord, how is He then his son(5)?" Thus it is by the power of the Spirit that the holy men who are under Divine influence are inspired, and every Scripture is for this reason said to be "given by inspiration of God," because it is the teaching of the Divine afflatus. If the bodily veil of the words were removed, that which remains is Lord and life and Spirit, according to the teaching of the great Paul, and according to the words of the Gospel also. For Paul declares that he who turns from the letter to the Spirit no longer apprehends the bondage that slays, but the Lord which is the life-giving Spirit; and the sublime Gospel says, "the words that I speak are spirit and are life(6)," as being divested of the bodily veil. The idea, however, that "the Spirit" is the essence of the Only-begotten, we shall leave to our dreamers: or rather, we shall make use, ex abundanti, of what they say, and arm the truth with the weapons of the adversary. For it is allowable that the Egyptian should be spoiled by the Israelites, and that we should make their wealth an ornament for ourselves. If the essence of the Son is called "Spirit," and God also is Spirit, (for so the Gospel tells us(7)), clearly the essence of the Father is called "Spirit" also. But if it is their peculiar argument that things which are introduced by different names are different also in nature, the conclusion surely is, that things which are named alike are not alien one from the other in nature either. Since then, according to their account, the essence of the Father and that of the Son are both called "Spirit," hereby is clearly proved the absence of any difference in essence. For a little further on Eunomius says:--"Of those essences which are divergent the appellations significant of essence are also surely divergent, but where there is one and the same name, that which is declared by the same appellation will surely be one also":--so that at all points "He that taketh the wise in their own craftiness(3)" has turned the long labours of our author, and the infinite toil spent on what he has elaborated, to the establishment of the doctrine which we maintain. For if God is in the Gospel called "Spirit," and the essence of the Only-begotten is maintained by Eunomius to be "Spirit," as there is no apparent difference in the one name as compared with the other, neither, surely, will the things signified by the names be mutually different in nature.

And now that I have exposed this futile and pointless sham-argument, it seems to me that I may well pass by without discussion what he next puts together by way of attack upon our master's statement. For a sufficient proof of the folly of his remarks is to be found in his actual argument, which of itself proclaims aloud its feebleness. To be entangled in a contest with such things as this is like trampling on the slain. For when he sets forth with much confidence some passage from our master, and treats it with preliminary slander and contempt, and promises that he will show it to be worth nothing at all, he meets with the same fortune as befalls small children, to whom their imperfect and immature intelligence, and the untrained condition of their perceptive faculties, do not give an accurate understanding of what they see. Thus they often imagine that the stars are but a little way above their heads, and pelt them with clods when they appear, in their childish folly; and then, when the clod falls, they clap their hands and laugh and brag to their comrades as if their throw had reached the stars themselves. Such is the man who casts at the truth with his childish missile, who sets forth Dike the stars those splendid sayings of our master, and then hurls from the ground,--from his downtrodden and grovelling understanding,--his earthy and unstable arguments. And these, when they have gone so high that they have no place to fall from, turn back again of themselves by their own weight(9). Now the passage of the great Basil is worded as follows(1):--

"Yet what sane man would agree with the statement that of those things of which the names are different the essences must needs be divergent also? For the appellations of Peter and Paul, and, generally speaking, of men, are different, while the essence of all is one: wherefore, in most respects we are mutually identical, and differ one from another only in those special properties which are observed in individuals: and hence also appellations are not indicative of essence, but of the properties which mark the particular individual. Thus, when we hear of Peter, we do not by the name understand the essence (and by 'essence' I here mean the material substratum), but we are impressed with the conception of the properties which we contemplate in him." These are the great man's words. And what skill he who disputes this statement displays against us, we learn,--any one, that is, who has leisure for wasting time on unprofitable matters,-- from the actual composition of Eunomius.

From his writings, I say, for I do not like to insert in my own work the nauseous stuff our rhetorician utters, or to display his ignorance and folly to contempt in the midst of my own arguments. He goes on with a sort of eulogy upon the class of significant words which express the subject, and, in his accustomed style, patches and sticks together the cast-off rags of phrases: poor Isocrates is nibbled at once more, and shorn of words and figures to make out the point proposed,--here and there even the Hebrew Philo receives the same treatment, and makes him a contribution of phrases from his own labours,--yet not even thus is this much-stitched and many- coloured web of words finished off, but every assault, every defence of his conceptions, all his artistic preparation, spontaneously collapses, and, as commonly happens with the bubbles when the drops, borne down from above through a body of waters against some obstacle, produce those foamy swellings which, as soon as they gather, immediately dissolve, and leave upon the water no trace of their own formation--such are the air-bubbles of our author's thoughts, vanishing without a touch at the moment they are put forth. For after all these irrefragable statements, and the dreamy philosophizing wherein he asserts that the distinct character of the essence is apprehended by the divergence of names, as some mass of foam borne downstream breaks up when it comes into contact with any more solid body, so his argument, following its own spontaneous course, and coming unexpectedly into collision with the truth, disperses into nothingness its unsubstantial and bubble-like fabric of falsehood. For he speaks in these words:--"Who is so foolish and so far removed from the constitution of men, as, in discoursing of men to speak of one as a man, and, calling another a horse, so to compare them?" I would answer him, --"You are right in calling any one foolish who makes such blunders in the use of names. And I will employ for the support of the truth the testimony you yourself give. For if it is a piece of extreme folly to call one a horse and another a man, supposing both were really men, it is surely a piece of equal stupidity, when the Father is confessed to be God, and the Son is confessed to be God, to call the one 'created and the other 'uncreated,' since, as in the other case humanity, so in this case the Godhead does not admit a change of name to that expressive of another kind. For what the irrational is with respect to man, that also the creature is with respect to the Godhead, being equally unable to receive the same name with the nature that is superior to it. And as it is not possible to apply the same definition to the rational animal and the quadruped alike (for each is naturally differentiated by its special property from the other), so neither can you express by the same terms the created and the uncreated essence, seeing that those attributes which are predicated of the latter essence are not discoverable in the former. For as rationality is not discoverable in a horse, nor solidity of hoofs in a man, so neither is Godhead discoverable in the creature, nor the attribute of being created in the Godhead: but if He be God He is certainly not created, and if He be created He is not God; unless(2), of course, one were to apply by some misuse or customary mode of expression the mere name of Godhead, as some horses have men's names given them by their owners; yet neither is the horse a man, though he be called by a human name, nor is the created being God, even though some claim for him the name of Godhead, and give him the benefit of the empty sound of a dissyllable." Since, then, Eunomius' heretical statement is found spontaneously to fall in with the truth, let him take his own advice and stand by his own words, and by no means retract his own utterances, but consider that the man is really foolish and stupid who names the subject not according as it is, but says "horse" for "man," and "sea" for "sky," and "creature" for "God." And let no one think it unreasonable that the creature should be set in opposition to God, but have regard to the prophets and to the Apostles. For the prophet says in the person of the Father, "My Hand made all these things"(3), meaning by "Hand," in his dark saying, the power of the Only- begotten. Now the Apostle says that all things are of the Father, and that all things are by the Son(4), and the prophetic spirit in a way agrees with the Apostolic teaching, which itself also is given through the Spirit. For in the one passage, the prophet, when he says that all things are the work of the Hand of Him Who is over all, sets forth the nature of those things which have come into being in its relation to Him Who made them, while He Who made them is God over all, Who has the Hand, and by It makes all things. And again, in the other passage, the Apostle makes the same division of entities, making all things depend upon their productive cause, yet not reckoning in the number of "all things" that which produces them: so that we are hereby taught the difference of nature between the created and the uncreated, and it is shown that, in its own nature, that which makes is one thing and that which is produced is another. Since, then, all things are of God, and the Son is God, the creation is properly opposed to the Godhead; while, since the Only-begotten is something else than the nature of the universe (seeing that not even those who fight against the truth contradict this), it follows of necessity that the Son also is equally opposed to the creation, unless the words of the saints are untrue which testify that by Him all things were made.

2. He then declares that the close relation between names and things is immutable, and thereafter proceeds accordingly, in the most excellent manner, with his discourse concerning "generated" and "ungenerate."

NOW seeing that the Only-begotten is in the Divine Scriptures proclaimed to be God, let Eunomius consider his own argument, and condemn for utter folly the man who parts the Divine into created and uncreated, as he does him who divides "man" into "horse" and "man." For he himself says, a little further on, after his intermediate nonsense, "the close, relation of names to things is immutable," where he himself by this statement assents to the fixed character of the true connection of appellations with their subject. If, then, the name of Godhead is properly employed in close connection with the Only-begotten God (and Eunomius, though he may desire to be out of harmony with us, will surely concede that the Scripture does not lie, and that the name of the Godhead is not inharmoniously attributed to the Only-begotten), let him persuade himself by his own reasoning that if "the close relation of names to things is immutable," and the Lord is called by the name of "God," he cannot apprehend any difference in respect of the conception of Godhead between the Father and the Son, seeing that this name is common to both,--or rather not this name only, but there is a long list of names in which the Son shares, without divergence of meaning, the appellations of the Father,--"good," "incorruptible," "just," "judge," "long-suffering," "merciful," "eternal," "everlasting," all that indicate the expression of majesty of nature and power,--without any reservation being made in His case in any of the names in regard of the exalted nature of the conception. But Eunomius passes by, as it were with closed eye, the number, great as it is, of the Divine appellations, and looks only to one point, his "generate and ungenerate,"--trusting to a slight and weak cord his doctrine, tossed and driven as it is by the blasts of error.

He asserts that "no man who has any regard for the truth either calls any generated thing 'ungenerate,' or calls God Who is over all 'Son' or 'generate.'" This statement needs no further arguments on our part for its refutation. For he does not shelter his craft with any veils, as his wont is, but treats the inversion of his absurd statement as equivalent(5), while he says that neither is any generated thing spoken of as "ungenerate," nor is God Who is over all called "Son" or "generate," without making any special distinction for the Only-begotten Godhead of the Son as compared with the rest of the "generated," but makes his opposition of "all things that have come into being" to "God" without discrimination, not excepting the Son from "all things." And in the inversion of his absurdities he clearly separates, forsooth, the Son from the Divine Nature, when he says that neither is any generated thing spoken of as "ungenerate," nor is God called "Son" or "generate," and manifestly reveals by this contradistinction the horrid character of his blasphemy. For when he has distinguished the "things that have come into being" from the "ungenerate," he goes on to say, in that antistrophal induction of his, that it is impossible to call (not the "unbegotten," but) "God," "Son" or "generate," trying by these words to show that which is not ungenerate is not God, and that the Only-begotten God is, by the fact of being begotten, as far removed from being God as the ungenerate is from being generated in fact or in name. For it is not in ignorance of the consequence of his argument that he makes an inversion of the terms employed thus inharmonious and incongruous: it is in his assault on the doctrine of orthodoxy that he opposes "the Godhead" to "the generate"--and this is the point he tries to establish by his words, that which is not ungenerate is not God. What was the true sequence of his argument? that having said "no generated thing is ungenerate," he should proceed with the inference, "nor, if anything is naturally ungenerate, can it be generate." Such a statement at once contains truth and avoids blasphemy. But now by his premise that no generated thing is ungenerate, and his inference that God is not generated, he clearly shuts out the Only-begotten God from being God, laying down that because He is not ungenerate, neither is He God. Do we then need any further proofs to expose this monstrous blasphemy? Is not this enough by itself to serve for a record against the adversary of Christ, who by the arguments cited maintains that the Word, Who in the beginning was God, is not God? What need is there to engage further with such men as this? For we do not entangle ourselves in controversy with those who busy themselves with idols and with the blood that is shed upon their altars, not that we acquiesce in the destruction of those who are besotted about idols, but because their disease is too strong for our treatment. Thus, just as the fact itself declares idolatry, and the evil that men do boldly and arrogantly anticipates the reproach of those who accuse it, so here too I think that the advocates of orthodoxy should keep silence towards one who openly proclaims his impiety to his own discredit, just as medicine also stands powerless in the case of a cancerous complaint, because the disease is too strong for the art to deal with.

3. Thereafter he discusses the divergence of names and of things, speaking, of that which is ungenerate as without a cause, and of that which is non-existent, as the Scindapsus, Minotaur, Blityri, Cyclops, Scylla, which never were generated at all, and shows that things which are essentially different, are mutually destructive, as fire of water, and the rest in their several relations. But in the case of the Father and the Son, as essence is common, and the properties reciprocally interchangeable, no injury results to the Nature.

Since, however, after the passage cited above, he professes that he will allege something stronger still, let us examine this also, as well as the passage cited, lest we should seem to be withdrawing our opposition in face of an overwhelming force. "If, however," he says, "I am to abandon all these positions, and fall back upon my stronger argument, I would say this, that even if all the terms that he advances by way of refutation were established, our statement will none the less be manifestly shown to be true. If, as will be admitted, the divergence of the names which are significant of properties marks the divergence of the things, it is surely necessary to allow that with the divergence of the names significant of essence is also marked the divergence of the essences. And this would be found to hold good in all cases, I mean in the case of essences, energies, colours, figures, and other qualities. For we denote by diver gent appellations the different essences, fire and water, air and earth, cold and heat, white and black, triangle and circle. Why need we mention the intelligible essences, in enumerating which the Apostle marks, by difference of names, the divergence of essence?"

Who would not be dismayed at this irresistible power of attack? The argument transcends the promise, the experience is more terrible than the threat. "I will come," he says, "to my stronger argument." What is it? That as the differences of properties are recognized by those names which signify the special attributes, we must of course, he says, allow that differences of essence are also expressed by divergence of names. What then are these appellations of essences by which we learn the divergence of Nature between the Father and the son? He talks of fire and water, air and earth, cold and heat, white and black, triangle and circle. His illustrations have won him the day: his argument carries all before it: I cannot contradict the statement that those names which are entirely incommunicable indicate difference of natures. But our man of keen and quick-sighted intellect has just missed seeing these points:--that in this case the Father is God and the Son is God; that "just," and "incorruptible," and all those names which belong to the Divine Nature, are used equally of the Father and of the Son; and thus, if the divergent character of appellations indicates difference of natures, the community of names will surely show the common character of the essence. And if we must agree that the Divine essence is to be expressed by names(6), it would behove us to apply to that Nature these lofty and Divine names rather than the terminology of "generate" and "ungenerate," because "good" and "incorruptible," "just" and "wise," and all such terms as these are strictly applicable only to that Nature which passes all understanding, whereas "generated" exhibits community of name with even the inferior forms of the lower creation. For we call a dog, and a frog, and all things that come into the world by way of generation, "generated." And moreover, the term "ungenerate" is not only employed of that which exists without a cause, but has also a proper application to that which is nonexistent. The Scindapsus(7) is called ungenerate, the Blityri(7) is ungenerate, the Minotaur is ungenerate, the Cyclops, Scylla, the Chimaera are ungenerate, not in the sense of existing without generation, but in the sense of never having come into being at all. If, then, the names more peculiarly Divine are common to the Son with the Father, and if it is the others, those which are equivocally employed either of the non-existent or of the lower animals--if it is these, I say, which are divergent, let his "generate and ungenerate" be so: Eunomius' powerful argument against us itself upholds the cause of truth in testifying that there is no divergence in respect of nature, because no divergence can be perceived in the names(8). But if he asserts the difference of essence to exist between the "generate" and the "ungenerate," as it does between fire and water, and is of opinion that the names, like those which he has mentioned in his examples, are in the same mutual relation as "fire" and "water," the horrid character of his blasphemy will here again be brought to light, even if we hold our peace. For fire and water have a nature mutually destructive, and each is destroyed, if it comes to be in the other, by the prevalence of the more powerful element. If, then, he lays down the doctrine that the Nature of the Ungenerate differs thus from that of the Only-begotten, it is surely clear that he logically makes this destructive opposition to be involved in the divergence of their essences, so that their nature will be, by this reasoning, incompatible and incommunicable, and the one would be consumed by the other, if both should be found to be mutually inclusive or co- existent.

How then is the Son "in the Father" without being destroyed, and how does the Father, coming to be "in the Son," remain continually unconsumed, if, as Eunomius says, the special attribute of fire, as compared with water, is maintained in the relation of the Generate to the Ungenerate? Nor does their definition regard communion as existing between earth and air, for the former is stable, solid, resistent, of downward tendency and heavy, while air has a nature made up of the contrary attributes. So white and black are found in opposition among colours, and men are agreed that the circle is not the same with the triangle, for each, according to the definition of its figure, is precisely that which the other is not. But I am unable to discover where he sees the opposition in the case of God the Father and God the Only-begotten Son. One goodness, wisdom, justice, providence, power, incorruptibility,--all other attributes of exalted significance are similarly predicated of each, and the one has in a certain sense His strength in the other; for on the one hand the Father makes all things through the Son, and on the other hand the Only-begotten works all in Himself, being the Power of the Father. Of what avail, then, are fire and water to show essential diversity in the Father and the Son? He calls us, moreover, "rash" for instancing the unity of nature and difference of persons of Peter and Paul, and says we are guilty of gross recklessness, if we apply our argument to the contemplation of the objects of pure reason by the aid of material examples. Fitly, fitly indeed, does the corrector of our errors reprove us for rashness in interpreting the Divine Nature by material illustrations! Why then, deliberate and circumspect sir, do you talk about the elements? Is earth immaterial, fire an object of pure reason, water incorporeal, air beyond the perception of the senses? Is your mind so well directed to its aim, are you so keen-sighted in all directions in your promulgation of this argument, that your adversaries cannot lay hold of, that you do not see in yourself the faults you blame in those you are accusing? Or are we to make concessions to you when you are establishing the diversity of essence by material aid, and to be ourselves rejected when we point out the kindred character of the Nature by means of examples within our compass?

4. He says that all things that are in creation have been named by man, if as is the case, they are called differently by every nation, as also the appellation of "Ungenerate" is conferred by us: but that the proper appellation of the Divine essence itself which expresses the Divine Nature, either does not exist at all, or is unknown to us.

But Peter and Paul, he says, were named by men, and hence it comes that it is possible in their case to change the appellations. Why, what existing thing has not been named by men? I call you to testify on behalf of my argument. For if you make change of names a sign of things having been named by men, you will thereby surely allow that every name has been imposed upon things by us, since the same appellations of objects have not obtained universally. For as in the case of Paul who was once Saul, and of Peter who was formerly Simon, so earth and sky and air and sea and all the parts of the creation have not been named alike by all, but are named in one way by the Hebrews, and in another way by us, and are denoted by every nation by different names. If then Eunomius' argument is valid when he maintains that it was for this reason, to wit, that their names had been imposed by men, that Peter and Paul were named afresh, our teaching will surely be valid also, starting as it does from like premises, which says that all things are named by us, on the ground that their appellations vary according to the distinctions of nations. Now if all things are so, surely the Generate and the Ungenerate are not exceptions, for even they are among the things that change their name. For when we gather, as it were, into the form of a name the conception of any subject that arises in us, we declare our concept by words that vary at different times, not making, but signifying, the thing by the name we give it. For the things remain in themselves as they naturally are, while the mind, touching on existing things, reveals its thought by such words as are available. And just as the essence of Peter was not changed with the change of his name, so neither is any other of the things we contemplate changed in the process of mutation of names. And for this reason we say that the term "Ungenerate" was applied by us to the true and first Father Who is the Cause of all, and that no harm would result as regards the signifying of the Subject, if we were to acknowledge the same concept under another name. For it is allowable instead of speaking of Him as "Ungenerate," to call Him the "First Cause" or "Father of the Only-begotten," or to speak of Him as "existing without cause," and many such appellations which lead to the same thought; so that Eunomius confirms our doctrines by the very arguments in which he makes complaint against us, because we know no name significant of the Divine Nature. We are taught the fact of Its existence, while we assert that an appellation of such force as to include the unspeakable and infinite Nature, either does not exist at all, or at any rate is unknown to us. Let him then leave his accustomed language of fable, and show us the names which signify the essences, and then proceed further to divide the subject by the divergence of their names. But so long as the saying of the Scripture is true that Abraham and Moses were not capable of the knowledge of the Name, and that "no man hath seen God at any time(9)," and that "no man hath seen Him, nor can see(1)," and that the light around Him is unapproachable(1), and "there is no end of His greatness(2)";--so long as we say and believe these things, how like is an argument that promises any comprehension and expression of the infinite Nature, by means of the significance of names; to one who thinks that he can enclose the whole sea in his own hand! for as the hollow of one's hand is to the whole deep, so is all the power of language in comparison with that Nature which is unspeakable and incomprehensible.

5. After much discourse concerning the actually existent, and ungenerate and good, and upon the consubstantiality of the heavenly powers, showing the uncharted character of their essence, yet the difference of their ranks he ends the book.

Now in saying these things we do not intend to deny that the Father exists without generation, and we have no intention of refusing to agree to the statement that the Only-begotten God is generated;--on the contrary the latter has been generated, the former has not been generated. But what He is, in His own Nature, Who exists apart from generation, and what He is, Who is believed to have been generated, we do not learn from the signification of "having been generated," and "not having been generated." For when we say "this person was generated" (or "was not generated"), we are impressed with a two-fold thought, having our eyes turned to the subject by the demonstrative part of the phrase, and learning that which is contemplated in the subject by the words "was generated" or "was not generated,"--as it is one thing to think of that which is, and another to think of what we contemplate in that which is. But, moreover, the word "is" is surely understood with every name that is used concerning the Divine Nature,--as "just," "incorruptible," "immortal," and "ungenerate," and whatever else is said of Him; even if this word does not happen to occur in the phrase, yet the thought both of the speaker and the hearer surely makes the name attach to "is," so that if this word were not added, the appellation would be uttered in vain. For instance (for it is better to present an argument by way of illustration), when David says, "God, a righteous judge, strong and patient(3)," if "is" were not understood with each of the epithets included in the phrase, the enumerations of the appellations will seem purposeless and unreal, not having any subject to rest upon; but when "is" is understood with each of the names, what is said will clearly be of force, being contemplated in reference to that which is. As, then, when we say "He is a judge," we conceive concerning Him some operation of judgment, and by the "is" carry our minds to the subject, and are hereby clearly taught not to suppose that the account of His being is the same with the action, so also as a result of saying, "He is generated (or ungenerate)," we divide our thought into a double conception, by "is" understanding the subject, and by "generated," or "ungenerate," apprehending that which belongs to the subject. As, then, when we are taught by David that God is "a judge," or "patient," we do not learn the Divine essence, but one of the attributes which are contemplated in it, so in this case too when we hear of His being not generated, we do not by this negative predication understand the subject, but are guided as to what we must not think concerning the subject, while what He essentially is remains as much as ever unexplained. So too, when Holy Scripture predicates the other Divine names of Him Who is, and delivers to Moses the Being without a name, it is for him who discloses the Nature of that Being, not to rehearse the attributes of the Being, but by his words to make manifest to us its actual Nature. For every name which you may use is an attribute of the Being, but is not the Being,--"good," "ungenerate," "incorruptible,"--but to each of these "is" does not fail to be supplied. Any one, then, who undertakes to give the account of this good Being, of this ungenerate Being, as He is, would speak in vain, if he rehearsed the attributes contemplated in Him, and were silent as to that essence which he undertakes by his words to explain. To be without generation is one of the attributes contemplated in the Being, but the definition of "Being" is one thing, and that of "being in some particular way" is another; and this(4) has so far remained untold and unexplained by the passages cited. Let him then first disclose to us the names of the essence, and then divide the Nature by the divergence of the appellations;--so long as what we require remains unexplained, it is in vain that he employs his scientific skill upon names, seeing that the names(5) have no separate existence.

Such then is Eunomius' stronger handle against the truth, while we pass by in silence many views which are to be found in this part of his composition; for it seems to me right that those who run in this armed race(6) against the enemies of the truth should arm themselves against those who are fairly fenced about with the plausibility of falsehood, and not defile their argument with such conceptions as are already dead and of offensive odour. His supposition that whatever things are united in the idea of their essence(7) must needs exist corporeally and be joined to corruption (for this he says in this part of his work), I shall willingly pass by like some cadaverous odour, since I think every reasonable man will perceive how dead and corrupt such an argument is. For who knows not that the multitude of human souls is countless, yet one essence underlies them all, and the consubstantial substratum in them is alien from bodily corruption? so that even children can plainly see the argument that bodies are corrupted and dissolved, not because they have the same essence one with another, but because of their possessing a compound nature. The idea of the compound nature is one, that of the common nature of their essence is another, so that it is true to say, "corruptible bodies are of one essence," but the converse statement is not true at all, if it be anything like, "this consubstantial nature is also surely corruptible," as is shown in the case of the souls which have one essence, while yet corruption does not attach to them in virtue of the community of essence. And the account given of the souls might properly be applied to every intellectual existence which we contemplate in creation. For the words brought together by Paul do not signify, as Eunomius will have them do, some mutually divergent natures of the supra-mundane powers; on the contrary, the sense of the names clearly indicates that he is mentioning in his argument, not diversities of natures, but the varied peculiarities of the operations of the heavenly host: for there are, he says, "principalities," and "thrones," and "powers," and "mights," and "dominions(8)." Now these names are such as to make it at once clear to every one that their significance is arranged in regard to some operation. For to rule, and to exercise power and dominion, and to be the throne of some one,--all these conceptions would not be held by any one versed in argument to apply to diversities of essence, since it is clearly operation that is signified by every one of the names: so that any one who says that diversities of nature are signified by the names rehearsed by Paul deceives himself, "understanding," as the Apostle says, "neither what he says, nor whereof he affirms(9)," since the sense of the names clearly shows that the Apostle recognizes in the intelligible powers distinctions of certain ranks, but does not by these names indicate varieties of essences.

Taken from "The Early Church Fathers and Other Works" originally published by Wm. B. Eerdmans Pub. Co. in English in Edinburgh, Scotland, beginning in 1867. (LNPF II/V, Schaff and Wace). The digital version is by The Electronic Bible Society, P.O. Box 701356, Dallas, TX 75370, 214-407-WORD.