Four discourses against the arians

Chapters XXIX-XXX
By Athanasius



Arian inferences are against the Regula Fidei, as before.


He wept and the like, as man. Other texts prove Him God. God could not fear.
He feared because His flesh feared.

54. THEREFORE as, when the flesh advanced, He is said to have advanced,
because the body was His own, so also what is said at the season of His death,
that He was troubled, that He wept, must be taken in the same sense(1). For
they, going up and down(2), as if thereby recommending their heresy anew,
allege; "Behold, 'He wept,' and said, 'Now is My soul troubled,' and He
besought that the cup might pass away; how then, if He so spoke, is He God,
and Word of the Father?" Yea, it is written that He wept, O God's enemies, and
that He said, 'I am troubled,' and on the Cross He said, 'Eloi, Eloi, lama
sabachthani,' that is, 'My God, My God, why hast Thou forsaken Me?' and He
besought that the cup might pass away(3). Thus certainly it is written; but
again I would ask you (for the same rejoinder must of necessity be made to
each of your objections 4), If the speaker is mere man, let him weep and fear
death, as being man; but if He is the Word in flesh(5) (for one must not be
reluctant to repeat), whom had He to fear being God? or wherefore should He
fear death, who was Himself Life, and was rescuing others from death? or how,
whereas He said, 'Fear not him that kills the body(6),' should He Himself
fear? And how should He who said to Abraham, 'Fear not, for I am with thee,'
and encouraged Moses against Pharaoh, and said to the son of Nun, 'Be strong,
and of a good courage(7),' Himself feel terror before Herod and Pilate?
Further, He who succours others against fear (for 'the Lord,' says Scripture,
'is on my side, I will not fear what man shall do unto me(8)'), did He fear
governors, mortal men? did He who Himself was come against death, feel terror
of death? Is it not both unseemly and irreligious to say that He was terrified
at death or hades, whom the keepers of the gates of hades(9) saw and
shuddered? But if, as you would hold, the Word was in terror wherefore, when
He spoke long before of the conspiracy of the Jews, did He not flee, nay said
when actually sought, 'I am He?' for He could have avoided death, as He said,
'I have power to lay down My life, and I have power to take it again;' and 'No
one taketh it from Me(10).'

55. But these affections were not proper to the nature of the Word, as far
as He was Word; but in the flesh which was thus affected was the Word, O
Christ's enemies and unthankful Jews! For He said not all this prior to the
flesh; but when the 'Word became flesh,' and has become man, then is it
written that He said this, that is, humanly. Surely He of whom this is written
was He who raised Lazarus from the dead, and made the water wine, and
vouch-safed sight to the man born blind, and said, 'I and My Father are
one(1).' If then they make His human attributes a ground for low thoughts
concerning the Son of God, nay consider Him altogether man from the earth, and
not(2) from heaven, wherefore not from His divine works recognise the Word who
is in the Father, and henceforward renounce their self-willed(3) irreligion?
For they are given to see, how He who did the works is the same as He who
shewed that His body was passible by His permitting(4) it to weep and hunger,
and to shew other properties of a body. For while by means of such He made it
known that, though God impassible, He had taken a passible flesh; yet from the
works He shewed Himself the Word of God, who had afterwards become man,
saying, Though ye believe not Me, beholding Me clad in a human body, yet
believe the works, that ye may know that "I am in the Father, and the Father
in Me(5)" ' And Christ's enemies seem to me to shew plain shamelessness and
blasphemy; for, when they hear 'I and the Father are one(6),' they violently
distort the sense, and separate the unity of the Father and the Son; but
reading of His tears or sweat or sufferings, they do not advert to His body,
but on account of these rank in the creation Him by whom the creation was
made. What then is left for them to differ from the Jews in? for as the Jews
blasphemously ascribed God's works to Beelzebub, so also will these, ranking
with the creatures the Lord who wrought those works, undergo the same
condemnation as theirs without mercy.

56. But they ought, when they hear 'I and the Father are one,' to see in
Him the oneness of the Godhead and the propriety of the Father's Essence; and
again when they hear, 'He wept' and the like, to say that these are proper to
the body; especially since on each side they have an intelligible ground, viz.
that this is written as of God and that with reference


to His manhood. For in the incorporeal, the properties of body had not been,
unless He had taken a body corruptible and mortal(1); for mortal was Holy
Mary, from whom was His body. Wherefore of necessity when He was in a body
suffering, and weeping, and toiling, these things which are proper to the
flesh, are ascribed to Him together with the body. If then He wept and was
troubled, it was not the Word, considered as the Word, who wept and was
troubled, but it was proper to the flesh; and if too He besought that the cup
might pass away, it was not the Godhead that was in terror, but this affection
too was proper to the manhood. And that the words 'Why hast Thou forsaken Me?'
are His, according to the foregoing explanations (though He suffered nothing,
for the Word was impossible), is notwithstanding declared by the Evangelists;
since the Lord became man, and these things are done and said as from a man,
that He might Himself lighten(2) these very sufferings of the flesh, and free
it from them(3). Whence neither can the Lord be forsaken by the Father, who is
ever in the Father, both before He spoke, and when He uttered this cry. Nor is
it lawful to say that the Lord was in terror, at whom the keepers of hell's
gates shuddered(4) and set open hell, and the graves did gape, and many bodies
of the saints arose and appeared to their own people(5). Therefore be every
heretic dumb, nor dare to ascribe terror to the Lord whom death, as a serpent,
flees, at whom demons tremble, and the sea is in alarm; for whom the heavens
are rent and all the powers are shaken. For behold when He says, 'Why hast
Thou forsaken Me?' the Father shewed that He was ever and even then in Him;
for the earth knowing its Lord s who spoke, straightway trembled, and the vail
was rent, and the sun was hidden, and the rocks were torn asunder, and the
graves, as I have said, did gape, and the dead in them arose; and, what is
wonderful, they who were then present and had before denied Him, then seeing
these signs, confessed that 'truly He was the Son of God(7).'

57. And as to His saying, 'If it be possible, let the cup pass,' observe
how, though He thus spake, He rebuked(1) Peter, saying, 'Thou savourest not
the things that be of God, but those that be of men.' For He willed(2) what He
deprecated, for therefore had He come; but His was the willing (for for it He
came), but the terror belonged to the flesh. Wherefore as man He utters this
speech also, and yet both were said by the Same, to shew that He was God,
willing in Himself, but when He had become man, having a flesh that was in
terror. For the sake of this flesh He combined His own will with human
weakness(3), that destroying this affection He might in turn make man
undaunted in face of death. hold then a thing strange indeed! He to whom
Christ's enemies impute words of terror, He by that so-called(4) tenor renders
men undaunted and fearless. And so the Blessed Apostles after Him from such
words of His conceived so great a contempt of death, as not even to care for
those who questioned them, but to answer, 'We ought to obey God rather than
men(5).' And the other Holy Martyrs were so bold, as to think that they were
rather passing to life than undergoing death. Is it not extravagant then, to
admire the courage of the servants of the Word, yet to say that the Word
Himself was in terror, through whom they despised death? But from that most
enduring purpose and courage of the Holy Martyrs is shewn, that the Godhead
was not in terror, but the Saviour took away our terror. For as He abolished
death by death, and by human means all human evils, so by this so-called
terror did He remove our terror, and brought about that never more should men
fear death. His word and deed go together. For human were the sayings,

Let the cup pass,' and 'Why hast Thou forsaken Me?' and divine the act
whereby the Same did cause the sun to fail and the dead to rise. Again He said
humanly, 'Now is My soul troubled;' and He said divinely, 'I have power to lay
down My life, and power to take it again(6).' For to be troubled was proper


to the flesh, and to have power to lay down His life(7) and take it again,
when He will, was no property of men but of the Word's power. For man dies,
not by his own power, but by necessity of nature and against his will; but the
Lord, being Himself immortal, but having a mortal flesh, had power, as God, to
become separate from the body and to take it again, when He would. Concerning
this too speaks David in the Psalm, 'Thou shalt not leave My soul in hades,
neither shalt Thou suffer Thy Holy One to see corruption(8).' For it beseemed
that the flesh, corruptible as it was, should no longer after its own nature
remain mortal, but because of the Word who had put it on, should abide
incorruptible. For as He, having come in our body, was conformed to our
condition, so we, receiving Him, partake of the immortality that is from Him.

58. Idle then is the excuse for stumbling, and petty the notions
concerning the Word, of these Ario-maniacs, because it is written, 'He was
troubled,' and 'He wept.' For they seem not even to have human feeling, if
they are thus ignorant of man's nature and properties; which do but make it
the greater wonder, that the Word should be in such a suffering flesh, and
neither prevented those who were conspiring against Him, nor took vengeance of
those who were putting Him to death, though He was able, He who hindered some
from dying, and raised others from the dead. And He let His own body suffer,
for therefore did He come, as I said before, that in the flesh He might
suffer, and thenceforth the flesh might be made impassible and immortal(9),
and that, as we have many times said, contumely and other troubles might
determine upon Him and come short of others after Him, being by Him annulled
utterly; and that henceforth men might for ever abide(10) incorruptible, as a
temple of the Word(11). Had Christ's enemies thus dwelt on these thoughts, and
recognised the ecclesiastical scope as an anchor for the faith, they would not
have made shipwreck of the faith, nor been so shameless as to resist those who
would fain recover them from their fall, and to deem those as enemies who are
admonishing them to be religious



Whether the Son is begotten of the Father's will? This virtually the same as
whether once He was not? and used by the Arians to introduce the latter
question. The Regula Fidei answers it at once in the negative by contrary
texts. The Arians follow the Valentinians in maintaining a precedent will;
which really is only exercised by God towards creatures. Instances from
Scripture. Inconsistency of Asterius. If the Son by will, there must be
another Word before Him. If God is good, or exist, by His will, then is the
Son by His will. If He willed to have reason or wisdom, then is His Word and
Wisdom at His will. The Son is the Living Will, and has all titles which
denote connaturality. That will which the Father has to the Son, the Son has
to the Father. The Father wills the Son and the Son wills the Father.

58. (continued). BUT(1), as it seems, a heretic is a wicked thing in
truth, and in every respect his heart is depraved(2) and irreligious. For
behold, though convicted on all points, and shewn to be utterly bereft of
understanding, they feel no shame; but as the hydra of Gentile fable, when its
former serpents were destroyed, gave birth to fresh ones, contending against
the slayer of the old by the production of new, so also they, hostile(3) and
hateful to God(4), as hydras(5), losing their life in the objections which
they advance, invent for themselves other questions Judaic and foolish, and
new expedients, as if Truth were their enemy, thereby to shew the rather that
they are Christ's opponents in all things.

59. After so many proofs against them, at which even the devil who is
their father(6) had himself been abashed and gone back, again as from their
perverse heart they mutter forth other expedients, sometimes in whispers,
sometimes with the drone(7) of gnats; 'Be it so,' say they; 'interpret these
places thus, and gain the victory in reasonings and proofs; still you must say
that the Son has received being from the Father at His will and pleasure;' for
thus they deceive many, putting forward the will and the pleasure of God. Now
if any of those who believe aright(8) were to say this in


simplicity, there would be no cause to be suspicious of the expression, the
right intention(9) prevailing over that somewhat simple use of words(10). But
since the phrase is from the heretics(11) and the words of heretics are
suspicious, and, as it is written, 'The wicked are deceitful,' and 'The words
of the wicked are deceit(12),' even though they but make signs(13), for their
heart is depraved, come let us examine this phrase also, lest, though
convicted on all sides, still, as hydras, they invent a fresh word, and by
such clever language and specious evasion, they sow again that irreligion of
theirs in another way. For he who says, 'The Son came to be at the Divine
will,' has the same meaning as another who says, 'Once He was not,' and 'The
Son came to be out of nothing,' and 'He is a creature.' But since they are now
ashamed of these phrases, these crafty ones have endeavoured to convey their
meaning in another way, putting forth the word 'will,' as cuttlefish their
blackness, thereby to blind the simple(14), and to keep in mind their peculiar
heresy. For whence(15) bring they 'by will and pleasure?' or from what
Scripture? let them say, who are so suspicious in their words and so inventive
of irreligion. For the Father who revealed from heaven His own Word, declared,
'This is My beloved Son;' and by David He said, 'My heart uttered a good
Word;' and John He bade say, 'In the beginning was the Word;' and David says
in the Psalm, 'With Thee is the well of life, and in Thy light shall we see
light;' and the Apostle writes, 'Who being the Radiance of Glory,' and again,
'Who being in the form of God,' and, 'Who is the Image of the invisible

60. All everywhere tell us of the being of the Word, but none of His being
'by will,' nor at all of His making; but they, where, I ask, did they find
will or pleasure 'precedent(1)' to the Word of God, unless forsooth, leaving
the Scriptures, they simulate the perverseness of Valentinus? For Ptolemy the
Valentinian said that the Unoriginate had a pair of attributes, Thought and
Will, and first He thought and then He willed; and what He thought, He could
not put forth(2), unless when the power of the Will was added. Thence the
Arians taking a lesson, wish will and pleasure to precede the Word. For them
then, let them rival the doctrine of Valentinus; but we, when we read the
divine discourses, found 'He was' applied to the Son, but of Him only did we
hear as being in the Father and the Father's Image; while in the case of
things originate only, since also by nature these things once were not, but
afterwards came to be(3), did we recognise a precedent will and pleasure,
David saying in the hundred and thirteenth Psalm, 'As for our God He is in
heaven, He hath done whatsoever pleased Him,' and in the hundred and tenth,
'The works of the Lord are great, sought out unto all His good pleasure;' and
again, in the hundred and thirty-fourth, 'Whatsoever the Lord pleased, that
did He in heaven, and in earth, and in the sea, and in all deep places(4).' If
then He be work and thing made, and one among others, let Him, as others, be
said 'by will' to have come to be, and Scripture shews that these are thus
brought into being. And Asterius, the advocate(5) for the heresy, acquiesces,
when he thus writes, 'For if it be unworthy of


the Framer of all, to make at pleasure, let His being pleased be removed
equally in the case of all, that His Majesty be preserved unimpaired. Or if it
be befitting God to will, then let this better way obtain in the case of the
first Offspring. For it is not possible that it should be fitting for one and
the same God to l make things at His pleasure, and not at His will also. In
spite of the Sophist having introduced abundant irreligion in his words,
namely, that the Offspring and the thing made are the same, and that the Son
is one offspring out of all offsprings that are, He ends with the conclusion
that it is fitting to say that the works are by will and pleasure.

61. Therefore if He be other than all things, as has been above shewn(1),
and through Him the works rather came to be, let not 'by will' be applied to
Him, or He has similarly come to be as the things consist which through Him
come to be. For Paul, whereas he was not before, became afterwards an Apostle
'by the will of God(2);' and our own calling, as itself once not being, but
now taking place afterwards, is preceded by will, and, as Paul himself says
again, has been made 'according to the good pleasure of His will(3).' And what
Moses relates, 'Let there be light,' and 'Let the earth appear,' and 'Let Us
make man,' is, I think, according to what has gone before(3a), significant of
the will of the Agent. For things which once were not but happened afterwards
from external causes, these the Framer counsels to make; but His own Word
begotten from Him by nature, concerning Him He did not counsel beforehand;
for in Him the Father makes, in Him frames, other things whatever He counsels;
as also James the Apostle teaches, saying, 'Of His own will begat He us with
the Word of truth(4).' Therefore the Will of God concerning all things,
whether they be begotten again or are brought into being at the first, is in
His Word, in whom He both makes and begets again what seems right to Him; as
the Apostles again signifies, writing to Thessalonica; 'for this is the will
of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.' But if, in whom He makes, in Him also
is the will, and in Christ is the pleasure of the Father, how can He, as
others, come into being by will and pleasure? For if He too came to be as you
maintain, by will, it follows that the will concerning Him consists in some
other Word, through whom He in turn comes to be; for it has been shewn that
God's will is not in the things which He brings into being, but in Him through
whom and in whom all things made are brought to be. Next, since it is all one
to say 'By will' and Once He was not,' let them make up their minds to say,
Once He was not,' that, perceiving with shame that times are signified by the
latter, they may understand that to say 'by will' is to place times before the
Son; for counselling goes before things which once were not, as in the case of
all creatures. But if the Word is the Framer of the creatures, and He coexists
with the Father, how can to counsel precede the Everlasting as if He were not?
for if counsel precedes, how through Him are all things? For rather He too, as
one among others is by will begotten to be a Son, as we too were made sons by
the Word of Truth; and it rests, as was said, to seek another Word, through
whom He too has come to be, and was begotten together with all things, which
were according to God's pleasure.

62. If then there is another Word of God, then be the Son originated by a
word; but if there be not, as is the case, but all things by Him have come to
be, which the Father has willed, does not this expose the many-headed(1)
craftiness of these men? that feeling shame at saying 'work,' and 'creature,'
and 'God's Word was not before His generation,' yet in another way they assert
that He is a creature, putting forward 'will,' and saying,

Unless He has by will come to be, therefore God had a Son by necessity and
against His good pleasure.' And who is it then who imposes necessity on Him, O
men most wicked, who draw everything to the purpose of your heresy? for what
is contrary to will they see; but what is greater and transcends it has
escaped their perception. For as what is beside purpose is contrary to will,
so what is according to nature transcends and precedes counselling(2). A man
by counsel builds a house, but by nature he begets a son; and what is in
building began to come into being at will, and is external to the maker; but
the son is proper offspring of the father's essence, and is not external to
him; wherefore neither does he counsel concerning him, lest he appear to
counsel about himself. As far then as the Son transcends the creature, by so
much does what is by nature transcend the will(3). And they, on hearing of
Him, ought


not to measure by will what is by nature; forgetting however that they are
hearing about God's Son, they dare to apply human contrarieties in the
instance of God, 'necessity' and 'beside purpose,' to be able thereby to deny
that there is a true Son of God. For let them tell us themselves,--that God is
good and merciful, does this attach to Him by will or not? if by will, we must
consider that He began to be good, and that His not being good is possible;
for to counsel and choose implies an inclination two ways, and is incidental
to a rational nature. But if it be too unseemly that He should be called good
and merciful upon will, then what they have said themselves must be retorted
on them,--'therefore by necessity and not at His pleasure He is good;' and,
'who is it that imposes this necessity on Him?' But if it be unseemly to speak
of necessity in the case of God, and therefore it is by nature that He is
good, much more is He, and more truly, Father of the Son by nature and not by

63. Moreover let them answer us this:--(for against their shamelessness I
wish to urge a further question, bold indeed, but with a religious intent; be
propitious, O Lord(1)!)--the Father Himself, does He exist, first having
counselled, then being pleased, or before counselling? For since they are so
bold in the instance of the Word, they must receive the like answer, that they
may know that this their presumption reaches even to the Father Himself. If
then they shall themselves take counsel about will, and say that even He is
from will, what then was He before He counselled, or what gained He, as ye
consider, after counselling? But if such a question be unseemly and
self-destructive, and shocking even to ask (for it is enough only to hear
God's Name for us to know and understand that He is He that Is), will it not
also be against reason to have parallel thoughts concerning the Word of God,
and to make pretences of will and pleasure? for it is enough in like manner
only to hear the Name of the Word, to know and understand that He who is God
not by will, has not by will but by nature His own Word. And does it not
surpass all conceivable madness, to entertain the thought only, that God
Himself counsels and considers and chooses and proceeds to have a good
pleasure, that He be not without Word and without Wisdom, but have both? for
He seems to be considering about Himself, who counsels about what is proper to
His Essence. There being then much blasphemy in such a thought, it will be
religious to say that things originate have come to be 'by favour and will,'
but the Son is not a work of will, nor has come after(2), as the creation, but
is by nature the own Offspring of God's Essence. For being the own Word of the
Father, He allows us not to account(3) of will as before Himself, since He is
Himself the Father's Living Counsel(4), and Power, and Framer of the things
which seemed good to the Father. And this is what He says of Himself in the
Proverbs; 'Counsel is mine and security, mine is understanding, and mine
strength(5).' For as, although Himself the 'Understanding,' in which He
prepared the heavens, and Himself 'Strength and Power' (for Christ is 'God's
Power and God's Wisdom(6)), He here has altered the terms and said, 'Mine is
understanding' and 'Mine strength,' so while He says, 'Mine is counsel,' He
must Himself be the Living(7) Counsel of the Father; as we have learned from
the Prophet also, that He becomes 'the Angel of great Counsel(8),' and was
called the good pleasure of the Father; for thus we must refute them, using
human illustrations(9) concerning God.

64. Therefore if the works subsist 'by will and favour,' and the whole
creature is made 'at God's good pleasure,' and Paul was called to be an
Apostle 'by the will of God,' and our calling has come about 'by His good
pleasure and will,' and all things have come into being through the Word, He
is external to the things which have come to be by will, but rather is Himself
the Living


Counsel of the Father, by which all these things have come to be; by which
David also gives thanks in the seventy-second Psalm. 'Thou hast holden me by
my right hand Thou shall guide me with Thy Counsel(1).' How then can the Word,
being the Counsel and Good Pleasure of the Father, come into being Himself 'by
good pleasure and will,' like every one else? unless, as I said before, in
their madness they repeat that He has come into being through Himself, or
through some other(2). Who then is it through whom He has come to be? let them
fashion another Word; and let them name another Christ, rivalling the doctrine
of Valentinus(3); for Scripture it is not. And though they fashion another,
yet assuredly he too comes into being through some one; and so, while we are
thus reckoning up and investigating the succession of them, the many-headed(4)
heresy of the Atheists(5) is discovered to issue in polytheism(6) and madness
unlimited; in the which, wishing the Son to be a creature and from nothing,
they imply the same thing in other words by pretending the words will and
pleasure, which rightly belong to things originate and creatures. Is it not
irreligious then to impute the characteristics of things originate to the
Framer of all? and is it not blasphemous to say that will was in the Father
before the Word? for if will precedes in the Father, the Son's words are not
true, 'I in the Father;' or even if He is in the Father, yet He will hold but
a second place, and it became Him not to say 'I in the Father,' since will was
before Him, in which all things were brought into being and He Himself
subsisted, as you hold. For though He excel in glory, He is not the less one
of the things which by will come into being. And, as we have said before, if
it be so, how is He Lord and they servants(7)? but He is Lord of all, because
He is one with the Father's Lordship; and the creation is all in bondage,
since it is external to the Oneness of the Father, and, whereas it once was
not, was brought to be.

65. Moreover, if they say that the Son is by will, they should say also
that He came to be by understanding; for I consider understanding and will to
be the same. For what a man counsels, about that also he has understanding;
and what he has in understanding, that also he counsels. Certainly the Saviour
Himself has made them correspond, as being cognate, when He says, 'Counsel is
mine and security; mine is understanding, and mine strength(1).' For as
strength and security are the same (for they mean one attribute), so we may
say that Understanding and Counsel are the same, which is the Lord. But these
irreligious men are unwilling that the Son should be Word and Living Counsel;
but they fable that there is with God(2), as if a habits(3), coming and
going(4), after the manner of men, understanding, counsel, wisdom; and they
leave nothing undone, and they put forward the 'Thought' and 'Will' of
Valentinus, so that they may but separate the Son from the Father, and may
call Him a creature instead of the proper Word of the Father. To them then
must be said what was said to Simon Magus; 'the irreligion of Valentinus
perish with you(5);' and let every one rather trust to Solomon, who says, that
the Word is Wisdom and Understanding. For he says, 'The Lord by Wisdom founded
the earth, by Understanding He established the heavens.' And as here by
Understanding, so in the Psalms, By the Word of the Lord were the heavens
made.' And as by the Word the heavens, so 'He hath done whatsoever pleased
Him.' And as the Apostle writes to Thessalonians, 'the will of God is in
Christ Jesus(6).' The Son of God then, He is the 'Word' and the 'Wisdom;' He
the 'Understanding' and the Living 'Counsel;' and in Him is the 'Good Pleasure
of the Father;' He is 'Truth' and 'Light' and 'Power' of the Father. But if
the Will of God is Wisdom and Understanding, and the Son is Wisdom, he who
says that the Son is 'by will,' says virtually that Wisdom has come into being
in wisdom, and the Son is made in a son, and the Word created through the
Word(7); which is incompatible with God and is opposed to His Scriptures. For
the Apostle proclaims the Son to be the own Radiance and Expression, not of
the Father's will(8), but of His Essence(9) Itself, saying, 'Who being the
Radiance of His glory and the Expression of His


Subsistence(10).' But if, as we have said before, the Father's Essence and
Subsistence be not from will, neither, as is very plain, is what is proper to
the Father's Subsistence from will; for such as, and so as, that Blessed
Subsistence, must also be the proper Offspring from It. And accordingly the
Father Himself said not, 'This is the Son originated at My will,' nor 'the Son
whom I have by My favour,' but simply 'My Son,' and more than that, 'in whom I
am well pleased;' meaning by this, This is the Son by nature; and 'in Him is
lodged My will about what pleases Me.'

66. Since then the Son is by nature and not by will, is He without the
pleasure of the Father and not with the Father's will? No, verily; but the Son
is with the pleasure of the Father, and, as He says Himself, 'The Father
loveth the Son, and sheweth Him all things(1).' For as not 'from will' did He
begin to be good, nor yet is good without will and pleasure(for what He is,
that also is His pleasure), so also that the Son should be, though it came not
'from will,' yet it is not without His pleasure or against His purpose. For as
His own Subsistence is by His pleasure, so also the Son, being proper to His
Essence, is not without His pleasure. Be then the Son the object of the
Father's pleasure and love; and thus let every one religiously account of(2)
the pleasure and the not-unwillingness of God. For by that good pleasure
wherewith the Son is the object of the Father's pleasure, is the Father the
object of the Son's love, pleasure, and honour; and one is the good pleasure
which is from Father in Son, so that here too we may contemplate the Son in
the Father and the Father in the Son. Let no one then, with Valentinus,
introduce a precedent will; nor let any one, by this pretence of 'counsel,'
intrude between the Only Father and the Only Word; for it were madness to
place will and consideration between them. For it is one thing to say, 'Of
will He came to be,' and another, that the Father has love and good pleasure
towards His Son who is His own by nature. For to say, 'Of will He came to be,'
in the first place implies that once He was not; and next it implies an
inclination two ways, as has been said, so that one might suppose that the
Father could even not will the Son. But to say of the Son, 'He might not have
been,' is an irreligious presumption reaching even to the Essence of the
Father, as if what is His own might not have been. For it is the same as
saying, 'The Father might not have been good.' And as the Father is always
good by nature, so He is always generative(3) by nature; and to say, 'The
Father's good pleasure is the Son,' and 'The Word's good pleasure is the
Father,' implies, not a precedent will, but genuineness of nature, and
propriety and likeness of Essence. For as in the case of the radiance and
light one might say, that there is no will preceding radiance in the light,
but it is its natural offspring, at the pleasure of the light which begat it,
not by will and consideration, but in nature and truth, so also in the
instance of the Father and the Son, one might rightly say, that the Father has
love and good pleasure towards the Son, and the Son has love and good pleasure
towards the Father.

67. Therefore call not the Son a work of good pleasure; nor bring in the
doctrine of Valentinus into the Church; but be He the Living Counsel, and
Offspring in truth and nature, as the Radiance from the Light. For thus has
the Father spoken, 'My heart uttered a good Word;' and the Son conformably, 'I
in the Father and the Father in Me(4).' But if the Word be in the heart, where
is will? and if the Son in the Father, where is good pleasure? and if He be
Will Himself, how is counsel in Will? it is unseemly; lest the Word come into
being in a word, and the Son in a son, and Wisdom in a wisdom, as has been
repeatedly(5) said. For the Son is the Father's All; and nothing was in the
Father before the Word; but in the Word is will also, and through Him the
objects of will are carried into effect, as holy Scriptures have shewn. And I
could wish that the irreligious men, having fallen into such want of reason(6)
as to be considering about will, would now ask their childbearing women no
more, whom they used to ask, 'Hadst thou a son before conceiving him(7)?' but
the father, 'Do ye become fathers by counsel, or by the natural law of your
will?' or 'Are your children like your nature and essence(8)?' that, even from
fathers they may learn shame, from whom they assumed this proposition(9) about
birth, and from whom they hoped to gain knowledge in point. For they will
reply to them, 'What we beget, is like, not our good pleasure(10), but like
ourselves; nor become we parents by previous counsel, but to beget is proper
to our nature; since we too are images of our fathers.' Either


then let them condemn themselves(11), and cease asking women about the Son of
God, or let them learn from them, that the Son is begotten not by will, but in
nature and truth. Becoming and suitable to them is a refutation from human
instances(12), since the perverse-minded men dispute in a human way concerning
the Godhead. Why then are Christ's enemies still mad? for this, as well as
their other pretences, is shewn and proved to be mere fantasy and fable; and
on this account, they ought, however late, contemplating the precipice of
folly down which they have fallen, to rise again from the depth and to flee
the snare of the devil, as we admonish them. For Truth is loving unto men and
cries continually, 'If because of My clothing of the body ye believe Me not,
yet believe the works,that ye may know that. "I am in the Father and the
Father in Me," and "I and the Father are one," and "He that hath seen Me hath
seen the Father(13)."' But the Lord according to His wont is loving to man,
and would fain 'help them that are fallen,' as the praise of David(14) says;
but the irreligious men, not desirous to hear the Lord's voice, nor bearing to
see Him acknowledged by all as God and God's Son, go about, miserable men, as
beetles, seeking with their father the devil pretexts for irreligion. What
pretexts then, and whence will they be able next to find? unless they borrow
blasphemies of Jews and Caiaphas, and take atheism from Gentiles? for the
divine Scriptures are closed to them, and from every part of them they are
refuted as insensate and Christ's enemies.


1--5. The substantiality of the Word proved from Scripture. If the One
Origin be substantial, Its Word is substantial. Unless the Word and Son be a
second Origin, or a work, or an attribute (and so God be compounded), or at
the same time Father, or involve a second nature in God, He is from the
Father's Essence and distinct from Him. Illustration of John x. 30, drawn from
Deut. iv. 4.

1. THE Word is God from God; for 'the Word was God(1),' and again, 'Of
whom are the Fathers, and of whom Christ, who is God over all, blessed for
ever. Amen(2).' And since Christ is God from God, and God's Word, Wisdom, Son,
and Power, therefore but One God is declared in the divine Scriptures. For the
Word, being Son of the One God, is referred to Him of whom also He is; so that
Father and Son are two, yet the Monad of the Godhead is indivisible and
inseparable. And thus too we preserve One Beginning of Godhead and not two
Beginnings, whence there is strictly a Monarchy. And of this very Beginning
the Word is by nature Son, not as if another beginning, subsisting by Himself,
nor having come into being externally to that Beginning, lest from that
diversity a Dyarchy and Polyarchy should ensue; but of the one Beginning He is
own Son, own Wisdom, own Word, existing from It. For, according to John, 'in'
that 'Beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God,' for the Beginning
was God; and since He is from It, therefore also 'the Word was God.' And as
there is one Beginning and therefore one God, so one is that Essence and
Subsistence which indeed and truly and really is, and which said 'I am that I
am(3),' and not two, that there be not two Beginnings; and from the One, a Son
in nature and truth, is Its own Word, Its Wisdom, Its Power, and inseparable
from It. And as there is not another essence, lest there be two Beginnings, so
the Word which is from that One Essence has no dissolution, nor is a sound
significative, but is an essential Word and essential Wisdom, which is the
true Son. For were He not essential, God will be speaking into the air(3a),
and having a body, in nothing differently from men; but since He is not man,
neither is His Word according. to the infirmity of man(4). For as the
Beginning is one Essence, so Its Word is one, essential, and subsisting, and
Its Wisdom. For as He is God from God, and Wisdom from the Wise, and Word from
the Rational, and Son from Father, so is He from Subsistence Subsistent, and
from Essence Essential and Substantive, and Being from Being.

2. Since were He not essential Wisdom and substantive Word, and Son
existing, but simply Wisdom and Word and Son in the Father, then the Father
Himself would have a nature compounded of Wisdom and Word. But if so, the
forementioned absurdities would follow; and He will be His own Father, and the
Son begetting and begotten by Himself; or Word, Wisdom, Son, is a name only,
and He does not subsist who owns, or rather who is, these titles. If then He
does not subsist, the names are idle and empty, unless we say that God is Very
Wisdom(5) and Very Word. But if so, He is His own Father and Son; Father, when
Wise, Son, when Wisdom; but these things are not in God as a certain quality;
away with the dishonourable(6) thought; for it will issue in this, that God is
compounded of essence and quality(7). For whereas all quality is in essence,
it will clearly follow that the Divine Monad, indivisible as it is, must be
compound, being severed into essence and accident(8). We must ask then these
headstrong men; The Son was proclaimed as God's Wisdom and Word; how then is
He such? if as a quality, the absurdity has been shewn; but if God is that
Very Wisdom, then it is the absurdity of Sabellius; therefore He is so, as an
Offspring in a proper sense from the Father


Himself, according to the illustration of light. For as there is light from
fire, so from God is there a Word, and Wisdom from the Wise, and from the
Father a Son. For in this way the Monad remains undivided and entire, and Its
Son, Word not unessential, nor not subsisting, but essential truly. For were
it not so, all that is said would be said notionally(1) and verbally(2). But
if we must avoid that absurdity, then is a true Word essential. For as there
is a Father truly, so Wisdom truly. In this respect then they are two; not
because, as Sabellius said, Father and Son are the same, but because the
Father is Father and the Son Son, and they are one, because He is Son of the
Essence of the Father by nature, existing as His own Word. This the Lord said,
viz. 'I and the Father are One(3);' for neither is the Word separated from the
Father, nor was or is the Father ever Wordless; on this account He says, 'I in
the Father and the Father in Me(4).'

3. And again, Christ is the Word of God. Did He then subsist by Himself,
and subsisting, has He become joined to the Father, or did God make Him or
call Him His Word? If the former, I mean if He subsisted by Himself and is
God, then there are two Beginnings; and moreover, as is plain, He is not the
Father's own, as being not of the Father, but of Himself. But if on the
contrary He be made externally, then is He a creature. It remains then to say
that He is from God Himself; but if so, that which is from another is one
thing, and that from which it is, is a second; according to this then there
are two. But if they be not two, but the names belong to the same, cause and
effect will be the same, and begotten and begetting, which has been shewn
absurd in the instance of Sabellius. But if He be from Him, yet not another,
He will be both be-getting and not begetting; begetting because He produces
from Himself, and not begetting, because it is nothing other than Himself. But
if so, the same is called Father and Son notionally. But if it be unseemly so
to say, Father and Son must be two; and they are one, because the Son is not
from without, but begotten of God. But if any one shrinks from saying
'Offspring,' and only says that the Word exists with God, let such a one fear
lest, shrinking from what is said in Scripture, he fall into absurdity, making
God a being of double nature. For not granting that the Word is from the
Monad, but simply as if He were joined to the Father, he introduces a twofold
essence, and neither of them Father of the other. And the same of Power. And
we may see this more clearly, if we consider it with reference to the Father;
for there is One Father, and not two, but from that One the Son. As then there
are not two Fathers, but One, so not two Beginnings, but One, and from that
One the Son essential.

4. But the Arians we must ask contrariwise: (for the Sabellianisers must
be confuted from the notion of a Son, and the Arians from that of a Father:)
let us say then--Is God wise and not word-less: or on the contrary, is He
wisdom-less and word-less(1)? if the latter, there is an absurdity at once; if
the former, we must ask, how is He wise and not word-less? does He possess the
Word and the Wisdom from without, or from Himself? If from without, there must
be one who first gave to Him, and before He received He was wisdom-less and
word-less. But if from Himself, it is plain that the Word is not from nothing,
nor once was not; for He was ever; since He of whom He is the Image, exists
ever. But if they say that He is indeed wise and not wordless, but that He has
in Himself His own wisdom and own word, and that, not Christ, but that by
which He made Christ, we must answer that, if Christ in that word was brought
to be, plainly so were all things; and it must be He of whom John says, 'All
things were made by Him,' and the Psalmist, 'In Wisdom hast Thou made them
all(2).' And Christ will be found to speak untruly, 'I in the Father,' there
being another in the Father. And 'the Word became flesh(3)' is not true
according to them. For if He in whom 'all things came to be,' Himself became
flesh, but Christ is not in the Father, as Word 'by whom all things came to
be,' then Christ has not become flesh, but perhaps Christ was named Word. But
if so, first, there will be another besides the name, next, all things were
not by Him brought to be, but in that other, in whom Christ also was made. But
if they say that Wisdom is in the Father as a quality or that He is Very
Wisdom(4), the absurdities will follow already mentioned. For He will be
compounds, and will prove His own Son and Father(6). Moreover, we must confute
and silence them on the ground, that the Word which is in God cannot be a
creature nor out of nothing; but if once a Word be in God, then He must be
Christ who says, 'I am in the Father and the Father in Me(7),' who also is
therefore the Only-begotten, since no other was begotten from Him. This is One
Son, who is Word, Wisdom, Power; for God is not compounded of these,


but is generative(8) of them. For as He frames the creatures by the Word, so
according to the nature of His own Essence has He the Word as an Offspring,
through whom He frames and creates and dispenses all things. For by the Word
and the Wisdom all things have come to be, and all things together remain
according to His ordinance(9). And the same concerning the word 'Son;' if God
be without Son(10), then is He without Work; for the Son is His Offspring
through whom He works(11); but if not, the same questions and the same
absurdities will follow their audacity.

5. From Deuteronomy; 'But ye that did attach yourselves unto the Lord your
God are alive every one of you this days(1).' From this we may see the
difference, and know that the Son of God is not a creature. For the Son says,
'I and the Father are One,' and, 'I in the Father, and the Father in Me; 'but
things originate, when they make advance, are attached unto the Lord. The Word
then is in the Father as being His own; but things originate, being external,
are attached, as being by nature foreign, and attached by free choice. For a
son which is by nature, is one(2) with him who begat him; but he who is from
without, and is made a son, will be attached to the family. Therefore he
immediately adds, 'What nation is there so great who hath God drawing nigh
unto them(3)?' and elsewhere, 'I a God drawing nigh(4);' for to things
originate He draws nigh, as being strange to Him, but to the Son, as being His
own, He does not draw nigh, but He is in Him. And the Son is not attached to
the Father, but co-exists with Him; whence also Moses says again in the same
Deuteronomy, 'Ye shall obey His voice, and apply yourselves unto Him(5);' but
what is applied, is applied from without.

6, 7. When the Word and Son hungered, wept, and was wearied, He acted as our
Mediator, taking on Him what was ours, that He might impart to us what was

6. But in answer to the weak and human notion of the Arians, their
supposing that the Lord is in want, when He says, 'Is given unto Me,' and 'I
received,' and if Paul says, 'Wherefore He highly exalted Him,' and 'He set
Him at the right hand(1),' and the like, we must say that our Lord, being Word
and Son of God, bore a body, and became Son of Man, that, having become
Mediator between God, and men, He might minister the things of God to us, and
ours to God. When then He is said to hunger and weep and weary, and to cry
Eloi, Eloi, which are our human affections, He receives them from us and
offers to the Father(2), interceding for us, that in Him they may be
annulled(3). And when it is said, 'All power is given unto Me,' and 'I
received,' and 'Wherefore God highly exalted Him,' these are gifts given from
God to us through Him, For the Word was never in want(4), nor has come into
beings; nor again were men sufficient to minister these things for themselves,
but through the Word they are given to us; therefore, as if given to Him, they
are imparted to us. For this was the reason of His becoming man, that, as
being given to Him, they might pass on to us(6). For of such gifts mere man
had not become worthy; and again the mere Word had not needed them 7 the Word
then was united to us, and then imparted to us power, and highly exalted
us(8). For the Word being in man, highly exalted man himself; and, when the
Word was in man, man himself received. Since then, the Word being in flesh,
man himself was exalted, and received power, therefore these things are
referred to the Word, since they were given on His account; for on account of
the Word in man were these gifts given. And as 'the Word became flesh(9),' so
also man himself received the gifts which came through the Word. For all that
man himself has received, the Word is said to have received(10); that it might
be shewn, that man himself, being unworthy to receive, as far as his own
nature is concerned, yet has received because of the Word become flesh.
Wherefore if anything be said to be given to the Lord, or the like, we must
consider that it is given, not to Him as needing it, but to man himself
through the Word. For every one interceding for another, receives the gift in
his own person, not as needing, but on his account for whom he intercedes.

7. For as He takes our infirmities, not being infirm(1), and hungers not
hungering, but sends up what is ours that it may be abolished, so the gifts
which come from God instead of our infirmities, doth He too Himself receive,
that man, being united to Him, may be able to partake them. Hence it is that
the Lord says, All things whatsoever Thou hast given Me, have given them,' and
again, 'I pray for them(2).' For He prayed for us, taking on Him what is ours,
and He was giving what He received. Since then, the Word being united to man
himself, the Father, regarding Him,


vouchsafed to man to be exalted, to have all power and the like; therefore are
referred to the Word Himself, and are as if given to Him, all things which
through Him we receive. For as He for our sake became man, so we for His sake
are exalted. It is no absurdity then, if, as for our sake He humbled Himself,
so also for our sake He is said to be highly exalted. So 'He gave to Him,'
that is, 'to us for His sake;' 'and He highly exalted Him(3),' that is, 'us in
Him.' And the Word Himself, when we are exalted, and receive, and are
succoured, as if He Himself were exalted and received and were succoured,
gives thanks to the Father, referring what is ours to Himself, and saying,
'All things, whatsoever Thou hast given Me, I have given unto them(4).'

8. Arians date the Son's beginning earlier than Marcellus, &c.

8. Eusebius and his fellows, that is, the Ario-maniacs, ascribing a
beginning of being to the Son, yet pretend not to wish Him to have a beginning
of kingship(5). But this is ridiculous; for he who ascribes to the Son a
beginning of being, very plainly ascribes to Him also a beginning of reigning;
so blind are they, confessing what they deny. Again, those who say that the
Son is only a name, and that the Son of God, that is, the Word of the Father,
is unessential and non-subsistent, pretend to be angry with those who say,
'Once He was not.' This is ridiculous also; for they who give Him no being at
all, are angry with those who at least grant Him to be in time. Thus these
also confess what they deny, in the act of censuring the others. And again
Eusebius and his fellows, confessing a Son, deny that He is the Word by
nature, and would have the Son called Word notionally; and the others
confessing Him to be Word, deny Him to be Son, and would have the Word called
Son notionally, equally void of footing. 9, 10. Unless Father and Son are two
in name only, or as parts and so each imperfect, or two gods, they are
coessential, one in Godhead, and the Son from the Father.

9. 'I and the Father are One(1).' You say that the two things are one, or
that the one has two names, or again that the one is divided into two. Now if
the one is divided into two, that which is divided must need be a body, and
neither part perfect, for each is a part and not a whole. But if again the one
have two names, this is the expedient of Subellius, who said that Son and
Father were the same, and did away with either, the Father when there is a
Son, and the Son when there is a Father. But if the two are one, then of
necessity they are two, but one according to the Godhead, and according to the
Son's coessentiality with the Father, and the Word's being from the Father
Himself; so that there are two, because there is Father, and Son, namely the
Word; and one because one God. For if not, He would have said, 'I am the
Father,' or 'I and the Father am;' but, in fact, in the 'I' He signifies the
Son, and in the 'And the Father,' Him who begot Him; and in the 'One' the one
Godhead and His coessentiality(2). For the Same is not, as the Gentiles hold,
Wise and Wisdom, or the Same Father and Word; for it were unfit for Him to be
His own Father, but the divine teaching knows Father and Son, and Wise and
Wisdom, and God and Word; while it ever guards Him indivisible and inseparable
and indissoluble in all respects.

10. But if any one, on hearing that the Father and the Son are two,
misrepresent us as preaching two Gods (for this is what some feign to
themselves, and forthwith mock, saying, 'You hold two Gods'), we must answer
to such, If to acknowledge Father and Son, is to hold two Gods, it
instantly(3) follows that to confess but one we must deny the Son and
Subellianise. For if to speak of two is to fall into Gentilism, therefore if
we speak of one, we must fall into Sabellianism. But this is not so; perish
the thought! but, as when we say that Father and Son are two, we still confess
one God, so when we say that there is one God, let us consider Father and Son
two, while they are one in the Godhead, and in the Father's Word being
indissoluble and indivisible and inseparable from Him. And let the fire and
the radiance from it be a similitude of man, which are two in being and in
appearance, but one in that its radiance is from it indivisibly.

11, 12. Marcellus and his disciples, like Arians, say that the Word was, not
indeed created, but issued, to create us, as if the Divine silence were a
state of inaction, and when God spake by the Word, He acted; or that there was
a going forth and return of the Word; a doctrine which implies change and
imperfection in Father and Son.

11. They fall into the same folly with the Arians; for Arians also say
that He was created for us, that He might create us, as if God waited till our
creation for His issue, as the one party say, or His creation, as the


other. Arians then are more bountiful to us than to the Son; for they say, not
we for His sake, but He for ours, came to be; that is, if He was therefore
created, and subsisted, that God through Him might create us. And these, as
irreligious or more so, give to God less than to us. For we oftentimes, even
when silent, yet are active in thinking, so as to form the results of our
thoughts into images; but God they would have inactive when silent, and when
He speaks then to exert strength; if, that is, when silent He could not make,
and when speaking He began to create. For it is just to ask them, whether the
Word, when He was in God, was perfect, so as to be able to make. If on the one
hand He was imperfect, when in God, but by being begotten became perfect[1],
we are the cause of Iris perfection, that is, if He has been begotten for us;
for on our behalf He has received the power of making. But if He was perfect
in God, so as to be able to make, His generation is superfluous; for He, even
when in the Father, could frame the world; so that either He has not been
begotten, or He was begotten, not for us, but because He is ever from the
Father. For His generation evidences, not that we were created, but that He is
from God; for He was even before our creation.

12. And the same presumption will be proved against them concerning the
Father; for if, when silent, He could not make, of necessity He has gained
power by begetting, that is, by speaking. And whence has He gained it? and
wherefore? If, when He had the Word within Him, He could make, He begets
needlessly, being able to make even in silence. Next, if the Word was in God
before He was begotten, then being begotten He is without and external to Him.
But if so, how says He now, 'I in the Father and the Father in Me[2]?' but if
He is now in the Father, then always was He in the Father, as He is now, and
needless is it to say, 'For us was He begotten, and He reverts after we are
formed, that He may be as He was.' For He was not anything which He is not
now, nor is He what He was not; but He is as He ever was, and in the same
state and in the same respects; otherwise He will seem to be imperfect and
alterable. For if, what He was, that He shall be afterwards, as if now He were
not so, it is plain, He is not now what He was and shall be. I mean, if He was
before in God, and afterwards shall be again, it follows that now the Word is
not in God. But the Lord refutes such persons when He says, 'I in the Father
and the Father in Me;' for so is He now as He ever was. But if so He now is,
as He was ever, it follows, not that at one time He was begotten and not at
another, nor that once there was silence with God, and then He spake, but
there is ever a Father, and a Son who is His Word, not in name[4] alone a
Word, nor the Word in notion only a Son, but existing coessential[5] with the
Father, not begotten for us, for we are brought into being for Him. For, if He
were begotten for us, and in His begetting we were created, and in His
generation the creature consists, and then He returns that He may be what He
was before, first, He that was begotten will be again not begotten. For if His
progression be generation, His return will be the close[6] of that generation,
for when He has come to be in God, God will be silent again. But if He shall
be silent, there will be what there was when He was silent, stillness and not
creation, for the creation will cease to be. For, as on the Word's outgoing,
the creation came to be, and existed, so on the Word's retiring, the creation
will not exist. What use then for it to come into being, if it is to cease? or
why did God speak, that then He should be silent? and why did He issue One
whom He recalls? and why did He beget One whose generation He willed to cease?
Again it is uncertain what He shall be. For either He will ever be silent, or
He will again beget, and will devise a different creation (for He will not
make the same, else that which was made would have remained, but another); and
in due course He will bring that also to a close, and will devise another, and
so on without end[7].

13, 14. Such a doctrine precludes all real distinctions of personality in the
Divine Nature. Illustration of the Scripture doctrine from 2 Cor. vi. 11, &c.

13. This perhaps he[1] borrowed from the Stoics, who maintain that their
God contracts and again expands with the creation, and then rests without end.
For what is dilated is first straitened; and what is expanded is at first
contracted; and it is what it was, and does but undergo an affection. If then
the Monad being dilated became a Triad, and the Monad was the Father[1a], and
the Triad is Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, first the Monad being dilated,
underwent an affection and became what it was not; for it was dilated, whereas
it had not been dilate. Next, if the Monad itself was dilated into a Triad,
and that, Father and Son and Holy Ghost, then Father and Son and Spirit prove
the same, as Sabellius held, unless the Monad which he speaks of is some-


thing besides the Father, and then he ought not to speak of dilatation, since
the Monad was to make Three, so that there was a Monad, and then Father, Son,
and Spirit. For if the Monad were dilated, and expanded itself, it must itself
be that which was expanded. And a Triad when dilated is no longer a Monad, and
when a Monad it is not yet a Triad. And so, He that was Father was not yet Son
and Spirit; but, when become These, is no longer only Father. And a man who
thus should lie, must ascribe a body to God, and represent Him as possible;
for what is dilatation, but an affection of that which is dilated? or what the
dilated, but what before was not so, but was strait indeed; for it is the
same, in time only differing from itself.

14. And this the divine Apostle knows, when he writes to the Corinthians,
'Be ye not straitened in us, but be ye yourselves dilated, O Corinthians[2];'
for he advises identical persons to change from straitness to dilatation. And
as, supposing the Corinthians being straitened were in turn dilated, they had
not been others, but still Corinthians, so if the Father was dilated into a
Triad, the Triad again is the Father alone. And he says again the same thing,
'Our heart is dilated[3];' and Noah says, 'May God dilate for Japheth[4],' for
the same heart and the same Japheth is in the dilatation. If then the Monad
dilated, it would dilate for others; but if it dilated for itself, then it
would be that which was dilated; and what is that but the Son and Holy Spirit?
And it is well to ask him, when thus speaking, what was the action[5] of this
dilatation? or, in very truth, wherefore at all it took place? for what does
not remain the same, but is in course of time dilated, must necessarily have a
cause of dilatation. If then it was in order that Word and Spirit should be
with Him, it is beside the purpose to say, 'First Monad, and then dilated;'
for Word and Spirit were not afterwards, but ever, or God would be
wordless[6], as the Arians hold. So that if Word and Spirit were ever, ever
was it dilated, and not at first a Monad; but if it were dilated afterwards,
then afterwards is there a Word. But if for the Incarnation it was dilated,
and then became a Triad, then before the Incarnation there was not yet a
Triad. And it will seem even that the Father became flesh, if, that is, He be
the Monad, and was dilated in the Man; and thus perhaps there will only be a
Monad, and flesh, and thirdly Spirit; if, that is, He was Himself dilated; and
there will be in name only a Triad. It is absurd too to say that it was
dilated for creating; for it were possible for it, remaining a Monad, to make
all; for the Monad did not need dilatation, nor was wanting in power before
being dilated; it is absurd surely and impious, to think or speak thus in the
case of God. Another absurdity too will follow. For if it was dilated for the
sake of the creation, and while it was a Monad the creation was not, but upon
the Consummation it will be again a Monad after dilatation, then the creation
too will come to nought. For as for the sake of creating it was dilated, so,
the dilatation ceasing, the creation will cease also. 15--24. Since the Word
is from God, He must be Son. Since the Son is from everlasting, He must be the
Word; else either He is superior to the Word, or the Word is the Father. Texts
of the New Testament which state the unity of the Son with the Father;
therefore the Son is the Word. Three hypotheses refuted--1. That the Man is
the Son; 2. That the Word and Man together are the Son; 3. That the Word
became Son on His incarnation. Texts of the Old Testament which speak of the
Son. If they are merely prophetical, then those concerning the Word may be
such also.

15. Such absurdities will be the consequence of saying that the Monad is
dilated into a Triad. But since those who say so venture to separate Word and
Son, and to say that the Word is one and the Son another, and that first was
the Word and then the Son, come let us consider this doctrine also. Now their
presumption takes various forms; for some say that the man whom the Saviour
assumed is the Son[1]; and others both that the man and the Word then became
Son, when they were united[2]. And others say that the Word Himself then
became Son when He became man[3]; for from being Word, they say, He has become
Son, not being Son before, but only Word. Now both are Stoic[4] doctrines,
whether to say that God was dilated or to deny the Son, but especially is it
absurd to name the Word, yet deny Him to be Son. For if the Word be not from
God, reasonably might they deny Him to be Son; but if He is from God, how see
they not that what exists from anything is son of him from whom it is? Next,
if God is Father of the Word, why is not the Word Son of His own Father? for
one is and is called father, whose is the son; and one is and is called son of
another, whose is the father. If then God is not Father of Christ, neither is
the Word Son; but if God be Father, then reasonably also the Word is Son. But
if afterwards there is Father, and first God, this is an Arian thought[4a].
Next, it is absurd


that God should change; for that belongs to bodies; but if they argue that in
the instance of creation He became afterwards a Maker, let them know that the
change is in the things s which afterwards came to be, and not in God.

16. If then the Son too were a work, well might God begin to be a Father
towards Him as others; but if the Son is not a work, then ever was the Father
and ever the Son[1]. But if the Son was ever, He must be the Word; for if the
Word be not Son, and this is what a man waxes bold to say, either he holds
that Word to be Father or the Son superior to the Word. For the Son being 'in
the bosom of the Father[2],' of necessity either the Word is not before the
Son (for nothing is before Him who is in the Father), or if the Word be other
than the Son, the Word must be the Father in whom is the Son. But if the Word
is not Father but Word, the Word must be external to the Father, since it is
the Son who is 'in the bosom of the Father.' For not both the Word and the Son
are in the bosom, but one must be, and He the Son, who is Only-begotten. And
it follows for another reason, if the Word is one, and the Son another, that
the Son is superior to the Word; for 'no one knoweth the Father save the
Son[3],' not the Word. Either then the Word does not know, or if He knows, it
is not true that 'no one knows.' And the same of 'He that hath seen Me, hath
seen the Father,' and 'I and the Father are One,' for this is uttered by the
Son, not the Word, as they would have it, as is plain from the Gospel; for
according to John when the Lord said, 'I and the Father are One,' the Jews
took up stones to stone Him. 'Jesus[4] answered them, Many good works have I
shewed you from My Father, for which of those works do ye stone Me? The Jews
answered Him, saying, For a good work we stone Thee not, but for blasphemy,
and because that Thou, being a man, makest Thyself God. Jesus answered them,
Is it not written in your law, I said, Ye are gods? If he called them gods
unto whom the Word of God came, and the Scripture cannot be broken, say ye of
Him, whom the Father hath sanctified and sent into the world, Thou
blasphemest, because I said, I am the Son of God? If I do not the works of My
Father, believe Me not. But if I do, though ye believe not Me, believe the
works, that ye may know and believe that the Father is in Me, and I in the
Father.' And yet, as far as the surface of the words intimated, He said
neither 'I am God,' nor 'I am Son of God,' but 'I and the Father are One.'

17. The Jews then, when they heard 'One,' thought like Sabellius that He
said that He was the Father, but our Saviour shews their sin by this argument:
'Though I had said "God," you should have remembered what is written, "I said,
Ye are gods; "' then to clear up 'I and the Father are One,' He has explained
the Son's oneness with the Father in the words, 'Because I said, I am the Son
of God.' For if He did not say it in words, still He has referred the sense of
'are One' to the Son. For nothing is one with the Father, but what is from
Him. What is that which is from Him but the Son? And therefore He adds, 'that
ye may know that I am in the Father, and the Father in Me.' For, when
expounding the One,' He said that the union and the inseparability lay, not in
This being That, with which It was One, but in His being in the Father and the
Father in the Son. For thus He overthrows both Sabellius, in saying, 'I am'
not, "the Father," but, 'the Son of God;' and Arius, in saying, 'are One.' If
then the Son and the Word are not the same, it is not that the Word is one
with the Father, but the Son; nor he that hath seen the Word 'hath seen the
Father,' but 'he that hath seen' the Son. And from this it follows, either
that the Son is greater than the Word, or the Word has nothing beyond the Son.
For what can be greater or more perfect than 'One,' and 'I in the Father and
the Father in Me,' and 'He that hath seen Me, hath seen the Father?' for these
utterances also belong to the Son. And hence the same John says, 'He that hath
seen Me, hath seen Him that sent Me,' and, 'He that receiveth Me, receiveth
Him that sent Me;' and, 'I am come a light into the world, that whosoever
believeth in Me, should not abide in darkness. And, if any one hear My words
and observe them not, I judge him not; for I came not to judge the world, but
to save the world. The word which he shall hear, the same shall judge him in
the last day, because I go unto the Father[5].' The preaching, He says, judges
him who has not observed the commandment; 'for if,' He says, 'I had not come
and spoken unto them, they had not had sin; but now they shall have no
cloke[6], He says, having heard My words, through which those who observe them
shall reap salvation.

18. Perhaps they will have so little shame as to say, that this utterance
belongs not to the Son but to the Word; but from what preceded it appeared
plainly that the speaker was the Son.


For He who here says, 'I came not to judge the world but to save[1],' is shewn
to be no other than the Only-begotten Son of God, by the same John's saying
before[2], 'For God so loved the world that He gave His Only-begotten Son,
that whosoever believeth on Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
For God sent not His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the
world through Him might be saved. He that believeth on Him is not condemned,
but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed
in the Name of the Only-begotten Son of God. And this is the condemnation,
that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light,
because their deeds are evil[3].' If He who says, 'For I came not to judge the
world, but that I might save it,' is the Same as says, 'He that seeth Me,
seeth Him that sent Me[4],' and if He who came to save the world and not judge
it is the Only-begotten Son of God, it is plain that it is the same Son who
says, 'He that seeth Me, seeth Him that sent Me.' For He who said, 'He that
believeth on Me,' and, 'If any one hear My words, I judge him not,' is the Son
Himself, of whom Scripture says, 'He that believeth on Him is not condemned,
but He that believeth not is condemned already, because He hath not believed
in the Name of the Only-begotten Son of God.' And again: 'And this is the
condemnation' of him who believeth not on the Son, 'that light hath come into
the world,' and they believed not in Him, that is, in the Son; for He must be
'the Light which lighteth every man that cometh into the world[5].' And as
long as He was upon earth according to the Incarnation, He was Light in the
world, as He said Himself, 'While ye have light, believe in the light, that ye
may be the children of light;' for 'I,' says He, 'am come a light into the

19. This then being shewn, it follows that the Word is the Son. But if the
Son is the Light, which has come into the world, beyond all dispute the world
was made by the Son. For in the beginning of the Gospel, the Evangelist,
speaking of John the Baptist, says, 'He was not that Light, but that he might
bear witness concerning that Light[1].' For Christ Himself was, as we have
said before, the True Light that lighteth every man that cometh into the
world. For if 'He was in the world, and the world was made by Him[2],' of
necessity He is the Word of God, concerning whom also the Evangelist witnesses
that all things were made by Him. For either they will be compelled to speak
of two worlds, that the one may have come into being by the Son and the other
by the Word, or, if the world is one and the creation one, it follows that Son
and Word are one and the same before all creation, for by Him it came into
being. Therefore if as by the Word, so by the Son also all things came to be,
it will not be contradictory, but even identical to say, for instance, 'In the
beginning was the Word,' or, 'In the beginning was the Son.' But if because
John did not say, 'In the beginning was the Son,' they shall maintain that the
attributes of the Word do not suit with the Son, it at once follows that the
attributes of the Son do not suit with the Word. But it was shewn that to the
Son belongs, 'I and the Father are One,' and that it is He 'Who is in the
bosom of the Father,' and, 'He that seeth Me, seeth Him that sent Me[3];' and
that 'the world was brought into being by Him,' is common to the Word and the
Son; so that from this the Son is shewn to be before the world; for of
necessity the Framer is before the things brought into being. And what is said
to Philip must belong, according to them, not to the Word, but to the Son.
For, 'Jesus said,' says Scripture, 'Have I been so long time with you, and yet
thou hast not known Me, Philip? He that hath seen Me, hath seen the Father.
And how sayest thou then, Shew us the Father? Believest thou not, that I am in
the Father and the Father in Me? the words that I speak unto you, I speak not
of Myself, but the Father that dwelleth in Me, He doeth the works. Believe Me
that I am in the Father and the Father in Me, or else, believe Me for the very
works' sake. Verily, verily, I say unto you, he that believeth on Me, the
works that I do shall he do also, and greater works than these shall he do,
because I go unto the Father. And whatsoever ye shall ask in My Name, that
will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son[4].' Therefore if the
Father be glorified in the Son, the Son must be He who said, 'I in the Father
and the Father in Me;' and He who said, 'He that hath seen Me, hath seen the
Father;' for He, the same who thus spoke, shews Himself to be the Son, by
adding, 'that the Father may be glorified in the Son.'

20. If then they say that the Man whom the Word wore, and not the Word, is
the Son of God the Only-begotten, the Man must be by consequence He who is in
the Father, in whom also the Father is; and the Man must be He who is One with
the Father, and who is in the bosom of the Father, and the True Light. And
they will be compelled to say that through the Man Himself the world came into
being, and that the Man was He who came not to judge the


world but to save it; and that He it was who was in being before Abraham came
to be. For, says Scripture, Jesus said to them, 'Verily, verily, I say unto
you, before Abraham was, I am[5].' And is it not absurd to say, as they do,
that one who came of the seed of Abraham after two and forty generations[6],
should exist before Abraham came to be? is it not absurd, if the flesh, which
the Word bore, itself is the Son, to say that the flesh from Mary is that by
which the world was made? and how will they retain 'He was in the world?' for
the Evangelist, by way of signifying the Son's antecedence to the birth
according to the flesh, goes on to say, 'He was in the world.' And how, if not
the Word but the Man is the Son, can He save the world, being Himself one of
the world? And if this does not shame them, where shall be the Word, the Man
being in the Father? And where will the Word stand to the Father, the Man and
the Father being One? But if the Man be Only-begotten, what will be the place
of the Word? Either one must say that He comes second, or, if He be above the
Only-begotten, He must be the Father Himself. For as the Father is One, so
also the Only-begotten from Him is One; and what has the Word above the Man,
if the Word is not the Son? For, while Scripture says that through the Son and
the Word the world was brought to be, and it is common to the Word and to the
Son to frame the world, yet Scripture proceeds to place the sight of the
Father, not in the Word but in the Son, and to attribute the saving of the
world, not to the Word, but to the Only-begotten Son. For, saith it, Jesus
said, 'Have I been so long while with you, and yet hast thou not known Me,
Philip? He that hath seen Me, hath seen the Father.' Nor does Scripture say
that the Word knows the Father, but the Son; and that not the Word sees the
Father, but the Only-begotten Son who is in the bosom of the Father.

21. And what more does the Word contribute to our salvation than the Son,
if, as they hold, the Son is one, and the Word another? for the command is
that we should believe, not in the Word, but in the Son. For John says, 'He
that believeth on the Son, hath everlasting life; but he that believeth not
the Son, shall not see life[1].' And Holy Baptism, in which the substance of
the whole faith is lodged, is administered not in the Word, but in Father,
Son, and Holy Ghost. If then, as they hold, the Word is one and the Son
another, and the Word is not the Son, Baptism has no connection with the Word.
How then are they able to hold that the Word is with the Father, when He is
not with Him in the giving of Baptism? But perhaps they will say, that in the
Father's Name the Word is included? Wherefore then not the Spirit also? or is
the Spirit external to the Father? and the Man indeed (if the Word is not Son)
is named after the Father, but the Spirit after the Man? and then the Monad,
instead of dilating into a Triad, dilates according to them into a Tetrad,
Father, Word, Son, and Holy Ghost. Being brought to shame on this ground, they
have recourse to another, and say that not the Man by Himself whom the Lord
bore, but both together, the Word and the Man, are the Son; for both joined
together are named Son, as they say. Which then is cause of which? and which
has made which a Son? or, to speak more clearly, is the Word a Son because of
the flesh? or is the flesh called Son because of the Word? or is neither the
cause, but the concurrence of the two? If then the Word be a Son because of
the flesh, of necessity the flesh is Son, and all those absurdities follow
which have been already drawn from saying that the Man is Son. But if the
flesh is called Son because of the Word, then even before the flesh the Word
certainly, being such, was Son. For how could a being make other sons, not
being himself a son, especially when there was a father[2]? If then He makes
sons for Himself, then is He Himself Father; but if for the Father, then must
He be Son, or rather that Son, by reason of Whom the rest are made sons.

22. For if, while He is not Son, we are sons, God is our Father and not
His. How then does He appropriate the name instead, saying, 'My Father,' and
'I from the Father[3]?' for if He be common Father of all, He is not His
Father only, nor did He alone come out the Father. But he says, that He is
sometimes called our Father also, because He has Himself become partaker in
our flesh. For on this account the Word has become flesh, that, since the Word
is Son, therefore, because of the Son dwelling in us[4], He may be called our
Father also; for 'He sent forth,' says Scripture, 'the Spirit of His Son into
our hearts, crying, Abba, Father[5].' Therefore the Son in us, calling upon
His own Father, causes Him to be named our Father also. Surely in whose hearts
the Son is not, of them neither can God be called Father. But if because of
the Word the Man is called Son, it follows necessarily, since the ancients[6]
are called sons even before the Incarnation, that the Word is Son even before
His sojourn among us; for 'I begat sons,' saith Scripture; and in


the time of Noah, 'When the sons of God saw,' and in the Song, 'Is not He thy
Father[7]?' Therefore there was also that True Son, for whose sake they too
were sons. But if, as they say again, neither of the two is Son, but it
depends on the concurrence of the two, it follows that neither is Son; I say,
neither the Word nor the Man, but some cause, on account of which they were
united; and accordingly that cause which makes the Son will precede the
uniting. Therefore in this way also the Son was before the flesh. When this
then is urged, they will take refuge in another pretext, saying, neither that
the Man is Son, nor both together, but that the Word was Word indeed simply in
the beginning, but when He became Man, then He was named[7a] Son; for before
His appearing He was not Son but Word only; and as the 'Word be came flesh,'
not being flesh before, so the Word became Son, not being Son before. Such are
their idle words; but they admit of an obvious refutation.

23. For if simply, when made Man, He has become Son, the becoming Man is
the cause. And if the Man is cause of His being Son, or both together, then
the same absurdities result. Next, if He is first Word and then Son, it will
appear that He knew the Father afterwards, not before; for not as being Word
does He know Him, but as Son. For 'No one knoweth the Father but the Son.' And
this too will result, that He has come afterwards to be 'in the bosom of the
Fathers[1],' and afterwards He and the Father have become One; and afterwards
is, 'He that hath seen Me, hath seen the Father[2].' For all these things are
said of the Son. Hence they will be forced to say, The Word was nothing but a
name. For neither is it He who is in us with the Father, nor whoso has seen
the Word, hath seen the Father, nor was the Father known to any one at all,
for through the Son is the Father known (for so it is written, 'And he to
whomsoever the Son will reveal Him'), and, the Word not being yet Son, not yet
did any know the Father. How then was He seen by Moses, how by the fathers?
for He says Himself in the Kingdoms, 'Was I not plainly revealed to the house
of thy father[3]?' But if God was revealed, there must have been a Son to
reveal, as He says Himself, 'And he to whomsoever the Son will reveal Him.' It
is irreligious then and foolish to say that the Word is one and the Son
another, and whence they gained such an idea it were well to ask them. They
answer, Because no mention is made in the Old Testament of the Son, but of the
Word; and for this reason they are positive in their opinion that the Son came
later than the Word, because not in the Old, but in the New only, is He spoken
of. This is what they irreligiously say; for first to separate between the
Testaments, so that the one does not hold with the other, is the device of
Manichees and Jews, the one of whom oppose the Old, and the other the New[4].
Next, on their shewing, if what is contained in the Old is of older date, and
what in the New of later, and times depend upon the writing, it follows that
'I and the Father are One,' and 'Only-begotten,' and 'He that hath seen Me
hath seen the Father[5],' are later, for these testimonies are adduced not
from the Old but from the New.

24. But it is not so; for in truth much is said in the Old also about the
Son, as in the second Psalm, 'Thou art My Son, this day have I begotten
Thee[1];' and in the ninth the title[2], Unto the 'end concerning the hidden
things of the Son, a Psalm of David;' and in the forty-fourth, 'Unto the end,
concerning the things that shall be changed to the Sons of Korah for
understanding, a song about the Well-beloved;' and in Isaiah, 'I will sing to
my Well-beloved a song of my Well-beloved touching my vineyard. My
Well-beloved hath a vineyard[3];' Who is this 'Well-beloved' but the
Only-begotten Son? as also in the hundred and ninth, 'From the womb I begat
Thee before the morning star[4],' concerning which I shall speak afterwards;
and in the Proverbs, 'Before the hills He begat me;' and in Daniel, 'And the
form of the Fourth is like the Son of Gods[5];' and many others. If then from
the Old be ancientness, ancient must be the Son, who is clearly described in
the Old Testament in many places. Yes,' they say, 'so it is, but it must be
taken prophetically.' Therefore also the Word must be said to be spoken of
prophetically; for this is not to be taken one way, that another. For if 'Thou
art My Son' refer to the future, so does 'By the Word of the Lord were the
heavens established;' for it is not said 'were brought to be,' nor 'He made.'
But that 'established' refers to the future, it states elsewhere: 'The Lord
reigned[5a],' followed by 'He so established the earth that it can never be
moved.' And if the words in the forty-fourth Psalm 'for My Well-beloved' refer
to the future, so does what follows upon them, 'My heart uttered a good Word.'
And if From the womb' relates to a man, therefore


also 'From the heart.' For if the womb is human, so is the heart corporeal.
But if what is from the heart is eternal, then what is 'From the womb' is
eternal. And if the 'Only-be-gotten' is 'in the bosom,' therefore the
'Well-beloved' is 'in the bosom.' For 'Only-be-gotten' and 'Well-beloved' are
the same, as in the words 'This is My Well-beloved Son[6].' For not as wishing
to signify His love towards Him did He say 'Well-beloved,' as if it might
appear that He hated others, but He made plain thereby His being
Only-begotten, that He might shew that He alone was from Him. And hence the
Word, with a view of conveying to Abraham the idea of 'Only-begotten,' says,
'Offer thy son thy well-beloved[7];' but it is plain to any one that Isaac was
the only son from Sara. The Word then is Son, not lately come to be, or named
Son, but always Son. For if not Son, neither is He Word; and if not Word,
neither is He Son. For that which is from the father is a son; and what is
from the Father, but that Word that went forth from the heart, and was born
from the womb? for the Father is not Word, nor the Word Father, but the one is
Father, and the other Son; and one begets, and the other is begotten.

25. Marcellian illustration from 1 Cor. xii. 4, refuted.

25. Arius then raves in saying that the Son is from nothing, and that once
He was not, while Sabellius also raves in saying that the Father is Son, and
again, the Son Father[1], in subsistence[2] One, in name Two; and he[3] raves
also in using as an example the grace of the Spirit. For he says, 'As there
are "diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit," so also the Father is the
same[4], but is dilated into Son and Spirit.' Now this is full of absurdity;
for if as with the Spirit, so it is with God, the Father will be Word and Holy
Spirit, to one becoming Father, to another Son, to another Spirit,
accommodating himself to the need of each, and in name indeed Son and Spirit,
but in reality Father only; having a beginning in that He becomes a Son, and
then ceasing to be called Father, and made man in name, but in truth not even
coming among us; and untrue in saying 'I and the Father,' but in reality being
Himself the Father, and the other absurdities which result in the instance of
Sabellius. And the name of the Son and the Spirit will necessarily cease, when
the need has been supplied; and what happens will altogether be but
make-belief, because it has been displayed, not in truth, but in name. And the
Name of Son ceasing, as they hold, then the grace of Baptism will cease too;
for it was given in the Son[5]. Nay, what will follow but the annihilation of
the creation? for if the Word came forth that we might be created[6], and when
He was come forth, we were, it is plain that when He retires into the Father,
as they say, we shall be no longer. For He will be as He was; so also we shall
not be, as then we were not; for when He is no more gone forth, there will no
more be a creation. This then is absurd.

26--36. That the Son is the Co-existing Word, argued from the New Testament.
Texts from the Old Testament continued; especially Ps. cx. 3. Besides, the
Word in Old Testament may be Son in New, as Spirit in Old Testament is
Paraclete in New. Objection from Acts x. 36; answered by parallels, such as 1
Cor. i. 5. Lev. ix. 7. &c. Necessity of the Word's taking flesh, viz. to
sanctify, yet without destroying, the flesh.

26. But that the Son has no beginning of being, but before He was made man
was ever with the Father, John makes clear in his first Epistle, writing thus:
'That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen
with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled of the
Word of Life; and the Life was manifested, and we have seen it; and we bear
witness and declare unto you that Eternal Life, which was with the Father, and
was manifested unto us[1].' While he says here that 'the Life,' not 'became,'
but 'was with the Father,' in the end of his Epistle he says the Son is the
Life, writing, 'And we are in Him that is True, even in His Son, Jesus Christ;
this is the True God and Eternal Life[2].' But if the Son is the Life, and the
Life was with the Father, and if the Son was with the Father, and the same
Evangelist says, 'And the Word was with God[3],' the Son must be the Word,
which is ever with the Father. And as the 'Son' is 'Word,' so 'God' must be
'the Father.' Moreover, the Son, according to John, is not merely 'God' but
'True God;' for according to the same Evangelist, 'And the Word was God;' and
the Son said, 'I am the Life[4].' Therefore the Son is the Word and Life which
is with the Father. And again, what is said in the same John, 'The
Only-begotten Son which is in the bosom of the Father[5],' shews that the Son
was ever. For whom John calls Son, Him David mentions in the Psalm as God's
Hand[6], saying, 'Why stretchest Thou not forth Thy Right Hand out of Thy
bosom[7]?' Therefore if the Hand is in


the bosom, and the Son in the bosom, the Son will be the Hand, and the Hand
will be the Son, through whom the Father made all things l for it is written,
'Thy Hand made all these things,' and 'He led out His people with His
Hand[8];' therefore through the Son. And if 'this is the changing of the Right
Hand of the Most Highest,' and again, 'Unto the end, concerning the things
that shall be changed, a song for My Well-beloved[9];' the Well-beloved then
is the Hand that was changed; concerning whom the Divine Voice also says,
'This is My Beloved Son.' This 'My Hand' then is equivalent to 'This My Son. '

27. But since there are ill-instructed men who, while resisting the
doctrine of a Son, think little of the words, 'From the womb before the
morning star I begat Thee[1];' as if this referred to His relation to Mary,
alleging that He was born of Mary 'before the morning star,' for that to say
'womb' could not refer to His relation towards God, we must say a few words
here. If then, because the 'womb' is human, therefore it is foreign to God,
plainly 'heart' too has a human meaning[2], for that which has heart has womb
also. Since then both are human, we must deny both, or seek to explain both.
Now as a word is from the heart, so is an offspring from the womb; and as when
the heart of God is spoken of, we do not conceive of it as human, so if
Scripture says 'from the womb,' we must not take it in a corporeal sense. For
it is usual with divine Scripture to speak and signify in the way of man what
is above man. Thus speaking of the creation it says, 'Thy hands made me and
fashioned me,' and, 'Thy hand made all these things,'and, 'He commanded and
they were created[3].' Suitable then is its language about everything;
attributing to the Son 'propriety' and 'genuineness,' and to the creation 'the
beginning of being.' For the one God makes and creates; but Him He begets from
Himself, Word or Wisdom. Now 'womb' and 'heart' plainly declare the proper and
the genuine; for we too have this from the womb; but our works we make by the

28. What means then, say they, 'Before the morning star?' I would answer,
that if 'Before the morning star' shews that His birth from Mary was
wonderful, many others besides have been born before the rising of the star.
What then is said so wonderful in His instance, that He should record it as
some choice prerogative[4], when it is common to many? Next, to beget differs
from bringing forth; for begetting involves the primary foundation, but to
bring forth is nothing else than the production of what exists. If then the
term belongs to the body, let it be observed that He did not then receive a
beginning of coming to be when he was evangelized to the shepherds by night,
but when the Angel spoke to the Virgin. And that was not night, for this is
not said; on the contrary, it was night when He issued from the womb. This
difference Scripture makes, and says on the one hand that He was begotten
before the morning star, and on the other speaks of His proceeding from the
womb, as in the twenty-first Psalm, 'Thou art be that drew Me from the
womb[5].' Besides, He did not say, 'before the rising of the morning star,'
but simply 'before the morning star.' If then the phrase must be taken of the
body, then either the body must be before Adam, for the stars were before
Adam, or we have to investigate the sense of the letter. And this John enables
us to do, who says in the Apocalypse, 'I am Alpha and Omega, the first and the
last, the beginning and the end. Blessed are they who make broad their robes,
that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the
gates into the city. For without are dogs, and sorcerers, and whoremongers,
and murderers, and idolaters, and whosoever maketh and loveth a lie. I Jesus
have sent My Angel, to testify these things in the Churches. I am the Root and
the Offspring of David, the Bright and Morning Star. And the Spirit and the
Bride say, Come; and let him that heareth say, Come; and let him that is
athirst, Come; and whosoever will, let him take of the water of life
freely[6].' If then 'the Offspring of David' be the 'Bright and Morning Star,'
it is plain that the flesh of the Saviour is called 'the Morning Star,' which
the Offspring from God preceded; so that the sense of the Psalm is this, 'I
have begotten Thee from Myself before Thy appearance in the flesh;' for
'before the Morning Star' is equivalent to 'before the Incarnation of the

29. Thus in the Old also, statements are plainly made concerning the Son;
at the same time it is superfluous to argue the point; for if what is not
stated in the Old is of later date, let them who are thus disputatious, say
where in the Old is mention made of the Spirit, the Paraclete? for of the Holy
Spirit there is mention, but nowhere of the Paraclete. Is then the Holy Spirit
one, and the Paraclete another, and the Paraclete the later, as not mentioned
in the Old? but far be it to say that the Spirit is later, or to


distinguish the Holy Ghost as one and the Paraclete as another; for the Spirit
is one and the same, then and now hallowing and comforting those who are His
recipients; as one and the same Word and Son led even then to adoption of sons
those who were worthy[1]. For sons under the Old were made such through no
other than the Son. For unless even before Mary there were a Son who was of
God, how is He before all, when they are sons before Him? and how also
'First-born,' if He comes second after many? But neither is the Paraclete
second, for He was before all, nor the Son later; for 'in the beginning was
the Word[2].' And as the Spirit and Paraclete are the same, so the Son and
Word are the same; and as the Saviour says concerning the Spirit, 'But the
Paraclete which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in My Name[3],'
speaking of One and Same, and not distinguishing, so John describes similarly
when he says, 'And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we beheld
His glory, glory as of one Only-begotten from the Father[4].' For here too he
does not distinguish but witnesses the identity. And as the Paraclete is not
one and the Holy Ghost another, but one and the same, so Word is not one, and
Son another, but the Word is Only-Begotten; for He says not the glory of the
flesh itself, but of the Word. He then who dares distinguish between Word and
Son, let him distinguish between Spirit and Paraclete; but if the Spirit
cannot be distinguished, so neither can the Word, being also Son and Wisdom
and Power. Moreover, the word 'Well-beloved' even the Greeks who are skilful
in phrases know to be equivalent with 'Only-begotten.' For Homer speaks thus
of Telemachus, who was the only-begotten of Ulysses, in the second book of the

O'er the wide earth, dear youth, why seek to run,

An only child, a well-beloved[5] son?

He whom you mourn, divine Ulysses, fell

Far from his country, where the strangers dwell.

Therefore he who is the only son of his father is called well-beloved.

30. Some of the followers of the Samosatene, distinguishing the Word from
the Son, pretend that the Son is Christ, and the Word another; and they ground
this upon Peter's words in the Acts, which he spoke well, but they explain
badly[6]. It is this: 'The Word He sent to the children of Israel, preaching
peace by Jesus Christ; this is Lord of all[7].' For they say that since the
Word spoke through Christ, as in the instance of the Prophets, 'Thus saith the
Lord,' the prophet was one and the Lord another. But to this it is parallel to
oppose the words in the first to the Corinthians, 'waiting for the revelation
of our Lord Jesus Christ, who shall also confirm you unto the end unblameable
in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ[8].' For as one Christ does not confirm
the day of another Christ, but He Himself confirms in His own day those who
wait for Him, so the Father sent the Word made flesh, that being made man He
might preach by means of Himself. And therefore he straightway adds, 'This is
Lord of all;' but Lord of all is the Word.

31. 'And Moses said unto Aaron, Go unto the altar and offer thy
sin-offering, and thy burnt-offering, and make an atonement for thyself and
for the people; and offer the offering of the people, and make an atonement
for them, as the Lord commanded Moses[1].' See now here, though Moses be one,
Moses himself speaks as if about another Moses, 'as the Lord commanded Moses.'
In like manner then, if the blessed Peter speak of the Divine Word also, as
sent to the children of Israel by Jesus Christ, it is not necessary to
understand that the Word is one and Christ another, but that they were one and
the same by reason of the uniting which took place in His divine and loving
condescension and becoming man. And even if He be considered in two ways[2],
still it is without any division of the Word, as when the inspired John says,
'And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us[3].' What then is said well and
rightly[4] by the blessed Peter, the followers of the Samosatene,
understanding badly and wrongly, stand not in the truth. For Christ is
understood in both ways in Divine Scripture, as when it says Christ 'God's
power and God's wisdom[5].' If then Peter says that the Word was sent through
Jesus Christ unto the children of Israel, let him be understood to mean, that
the Word incarnate has appeared to the children of Israel, so that it may
correspond to 'And the Word became flesh.' But if they understand it
otherwise, and, while confessing the Word to be divine, as He is, separate
from Him the Man that He has taken, with which also we believe that He is made
one, saying that He has been sent through Jesus Christ, they are, without
knowing it, contradicting themselves. For those who in this place separate the
divine Word from the divine Incarnation, have, it seems, a degraded notion of
the doctrine of His having become flesh, and entertain Gentile thoughts, as
they do, conceiving that the divine Incarnation is an alteration of the Word.
But it is not so; perish the thought.

32. For in the same way that John here preaches that incomprehensible
union. 'the


mortal being swallowed up of life[1],' nay, of Him who is Very Life (as the
Lord said to Martha, 'I am the Life[2]'), so when the blessed Peter says that
through Jesus Christ the Word was sent, he implies the divine union also. For
as when a man heard 'The Word became flesh,' he would not think that the Word
ceased to be, which is absurd, as has been said before, so also hearing of the
Word which has been united to the flesh, let him understand the divine mystery
one and simple. More clearly however and indisputably than all reasoning does
what was said by the Archangel to the Bearer of God herself, shew the oneness
of the Divine Word and Man. For he says, 'The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee,
and the Power of the Highest shall overshadow thee therefore also that Holy
Thing which shall be born of thee, shall be called the Son of God[3].'
Irrationally then do the followers of the Samosatene separate the Word who is
clearly declared to be made one with the Man from Mary. He is not therefore
sent through that Man; but He rather in Him sent, saying, 'Go ye, teach all

33. And this is usual with Scriptures[5], to express itself in
inartificial and simple phrases. For so also in Numbers we shall find, Moses
said to Raguel the Midianite, the father-in-law of Moses; for there was not
one Moses who spoke, and another whose father-in-law was Raguel, but Moses was
one. And if in like manner the Word of God is called Wisdom and Power and
Right-Hand and Arm and the like, and if in His love to man He has become one
with us, putting on our first-fruits and blended with it, therefore the other
titles also have, as was natural, become the Word's portions. For that John
has said, that in the beginning was the Word, and He with God and Himself God,
and alI things through Him, and without Him nothing made, shews clearly that
even man is the formation of God the Word. If then after taking him, when
enfeebled[6], into Himself, He renews him again through that sure renewal unto
endless permanence, and therefore is made one with him in order to raise him
to a diviner lot, how can we possibly say that the Word was sent through the
Man who was from Mary, and reckon Him, the Lord of Apostles, with the other
Apostles, I mean prophets, who were sent by Him? And how can Christ be called
a mere man? on the contrary, being made one with the Word, He is with reason
called Christ and Son of God, the prophet having long since loudly and
clearly ascribed the Father's subsistence to Him, and said, 'And I will send
My Son Christ[7],' and in the Jordan, 'This is My Well-beloved Son.' For when
He had fulfilled His promise, He shewed, as was suitable, that He was He whom
He said He had sent.

34. Let us then consider Christ in both ways, the divine Word made one in Mary
with Him which is from Mary. For in her womb the Word fashioned for Himself
His house, as at the beginning He formed Adam from the earth; or rather more
divinely, concerning whom Solomon too says openly, knowing that the Word was
also called Wisdom, 'Wisdom builded herself an house[1];' which the Apostle
interprets when he says, 'Which house are we[2],' and elsewhere calls us a
temple, as far as it is fitting to God to inbabit a temple, of which the
image, made of stones, He by Solomon commanded the ancient people to build;
whence, on the appearance of the Truth, the image ceased. For when the
ruthless men wished to prove the image to be the truth, and to destroy that
true habitation which we surely believe His union with us to be, He threatened
them not; but knowing that their crime was against themselves, He says to
them, 'Destroy this Temple, and in three days I will raise it up[3],' He, our
Saviour, surely shewing thereby that the things about which men busy
themselves, carry their dissolution with them. For unless the Lord had built
the house, and kept the city, in vain did the builders toil, and the keepers
watch[4]. And so the works of the Jews are undone, for they were a shadow; but
the Church is firmly established; it is 'founded on the rock,' and 'the gates
of hades shall not prevail against it[5].' Theirs[6] it was to say, 'Why dost
Thou, being a man, make Thyself God[7]?' and their disciple is the Samosatene;
whence to his followers with reason does he teach his heresy. But 'we did not
so learn Christ, if so be that we heard' Him, and were taught from Him,
'putting off the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts,'
and taking up 'the new, which after God is created in righteousness and true
holiness[8].' Let Christ then in both ways be religiously considered.

35. But if Scripture often calls even the body by the name of Christ, as
in the blessed Peter's words to Cornelius, when he teaches him of 'Jesus of
Nazareth, whom God anointed with the Holy Ghost,' and again to the Jews,
'Jesus of Nazareth, a Man approved of God for you[1],' and again the blessed
Paul to the Athenians, 'By that Man, whom He


ordained, giving assurance to all men, in that He raised Him from the dead[2]'
(for we find the appointment and the mission often synonymous with the
anointing; from which any one who will may learn, that there is no discordance
in the words of the sacred writers, but that they but give various names to
the union of God the Word with the Man from Mary, sometimes as anointing,
sometimes as mission, sometimes as appointment), it follows that what the
blessed Peter says is rights, and he proclaims in purity the Godhead of the
Only begotten, without separating the subsistence of God the Word from the Man
from Mary (perish the thought! for how should he, who had heard in so main,
ways, 'I and the Father are one,' and 'He that hath seen Me, hath seen the
Father[4]?)' In which Man, after the resurrection also, when the doors were
shut, we know of His coming to the whole band[4a] of the Apostles, and
dispersing all that was hard to believe in it by His words, 'Handle Me and
see, for a spirit hath not flesh and bones, as ye see Me have[5].' And He did
not say, 'This,' or 'this Man which I have taken to Me,' but 'Me.' Wherefore
the Samosatene will gain no allowance, being refuted by so many arguments for
the union of God the Word, nay by God the Word Himself, who now brings the
news to all, and assures them by eating, and permitting to them that handling
of Him which then took place. For certainly he who gives food to others, and
they who give him, touch hands. For 'they gave Him,' Scripture says, 'a piece
of a broiled fish and of an honey-comb, and' when He had 'eaten before them,
He took the remains and gave to them[6],' See now, though not as Thomas was
allowed, yet by another way, He afforded to them full assurance, in being
touched by them; but if you would now see the scars, learn from Thomas. 'Reach
hither thy hand and thrust it into My side, and reach hither thy finger and
behold My hands[7];' so says God the Word, speaking of His own[8] side and
hands, and of Himself as whole man and God to beget, first affording to the
Saints even perception of the Word through the body[9], as we may consider, by
entering when the doors were shut; and next standing near them in the body and
affording full assurance. So much may be conveniently said for confirmation of
the faithful, and correction of the unbelieving.

36. And so let Paul of Samosata also stand corrected on hearing the divine
voice of Him who said 'My body,' not 'Christ besides Me who am the Word,' but
'Him[1] with Me, and Me with Him.' For I the Word am the chrism, and that
which has the chrism from Me is the Man[2]; not then without Me could He be
called Christ, but being with Me and I in Him. Therefore the mention of the
mission of the Word shews the uniting which took place with Jesus, born of
Mary, Whose Name means Saviour, not by reason of anything else, but from the
Man's being made one with God the Word. This passage has the same meaning as
'the Father that sent Me,' and 'I came not of Myself, but the Father sent
Me[3].' For he has given the name of mission[4] to the uniting with the Man,
with Whom the Invisible nature might be known to men, through the visible. For
God changes not place, like us who are hidden in places, when in the fashion
of our littleness He displays Himself in His existence in the flesh; for how
should He, who fills the heaven and the earth? but on account of the presence
in the flesh the just have spoken of His mission. Therefore God the Word
Himself is Christ from Mary, God and Man; not some other Christ but One and
the Same; He before ages from the Father, He too in the last times from the
Virgin; invisible s before even to the holy powers of heaven, visible now
because of His being one with the Man who is visible; seen, I say, not in His
invisible Godhead but in the operation[6] of the Godhead through the human
body and whole Man, which He has renewed by its appropriation to Himself. To
Him be the adoration and the worship, who was before, and now is, and ever
shall be, even to all ages. Amen.