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Question: Do you believe that OO and EO together are truly the same church?
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Author Topic: OO and EO difference (hurdles to Reunification)  (Read 31360 times) Average Rating: 0
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« Reply #225 on: October 07, 2011, 07:19:47 PM »

BTW, when I say 'humanly being Divine', I do not mean it in the sense of 'a man' acting Divinely, but rather, as you say, in the sense of the Word acting Divinely in and through His own humanity. That is to say that Jesus' conspicuously Divine acts are the acts of the Godman. I hope I am making sense.
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« Reply #226 on: October 08, 2011, 04:35:50 AM »

Dear JLatimer,

I understand and agree with all your last posts. I think that these sort of terms are necessary to preserve both the integrity of those natures of which Christ is, and the hypostatic unity.

I don't sense that you and I have any disagreement at all. Which is interesting.
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« Reply #227 on: October 08, 2011, 04:45:36 AM »

I guess I still want to know where Nicholas sees the divinity of Christ operating in union with his own humanity?

Where is the theanthropos? or the theanthropic energy?

What do you make of those terms?

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« Reply #228 on: October 08, 2011, 05:21:56 AM »

I guess I still want to know where Nicholas sees the divinity of Christ operating in union with his own humanity?
Everywhere.
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« Reply #229 on: October 08, 2011, 05:33:53 AM »

Do you have some examples
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« Reply #230 on: October 08, 2011, 05:36:29 AM »

Do you have some examples

Everything Christ did was done theandrically. Everything reported in the Gospels.
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« Reply #231 on: October 08, 2011, 06:43:18 AM »

Sorry, I shouldn't be joining in with these discussions. I can feel my brain having difficulty coping. One minute I think I understand what we are talking about and then...

However, I have always clung desperately to Archimandrite Justin Popovitch's writings. I lit up when mention was made of Godman.
So how does this short link rest with our OO brethren?
http://www.sv-luka.org/library/perfectgod_jp.htm
 
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« Reply #232 on: October 08, 2011, 07:42:28 AM »

Dear Aidan

Yes, I hear this short homily with agreement.

Nicholas,

I am still not at all sure how you see the Divinity of Christ operating in and through the humanity of Christ. The Fathers are agreed that it is a divine act for Christ to walk on water, while it is human to walk. In the instance of Christ walking on water how was this achieved? Was it by his own divine power operating in and through his humanity as he himself willed, or was it by the act of divine grace acting upon his humanity?

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« Reply #233 on: October 08, 2011, 02:52:53 PM »

Was it by his own divine power operating in and through his humanity as he himself willed, or was it by the act of divine grace acting upon his humanity?
I think it was His own divine power operating in and through his humanity by nature, in the same manner that His divine power operates in and through a saint's humanity by grace. I also believe that everything God the Son does he does by, in and through the operation of the Holy Spirit in and to the glory of God the Father.

Fr. Peter, what exactly do you think it is that humans are called to do? Are we not ultimately called to name the beasts of the cosmos, to command the elements? As Eusebius of Caesarea said, "...man and God shall live together to do marvellous deeds."

Also, what do you make of Akimori's comment?

I don't understand how not feeling hunger for forty days even qualifies as a "fast". Do the fathers universally teach that this was the Lord's experience of the desert?
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« Reply #234 on: October 08, 2011, 03:52:18 PM »

If you are happy saying that Christ worked wonders by his own divine power in his own humanity then why do you have a problem accepting that by his divine power he caused his humanity not to feel hunger for forty days, as the Fathers teach?

Certainly St Cyril, St Basil and St Severus all agree on the interpretation of his choosing not to allow his humanity to feel hunger for forty days.

Let me quote Leontius of Jerusalem, a quite important Chalcedonian writer..

But it is confessed that, in assuming our nature (fusika), the Lord was not deprived of what is above our nature (fusin). Much shows this: his conception without seed which is different from the way that we come into being, and his virginal birth, as well as his fasting for forty days wihout feeling hunger, and such like. Therefore in Christ we believe that this was arranged in a way that transcends our nature, so that even as his flesh existed, it was also ensouled, and the flesh of the divine Logos was ensouled with a rational and thinking soul.

So it seems to me that there is a continuous patristic tradition of teaching that divinely Christ did not feel any hunger during his forty days of fasting which reaches at the least from the Cappadocians, through St Cyril, and then through St Severus and Leontius of Jerusalem into both the OO and EO traditions.

I don't see that Leontius says anything here that St Severus would not also accept.
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« Reply #235 on: October 08, 2011, 03:53:39 PM »

If you are happy saying that Christ worked wonders by his own divine power in his own humanity then why do you have a problem accepting that by his divine power he caused his humanity not to feel hunger for forty days, as the Fathers teach?
Do you think that no other human could fast forty days without experiencing hunger and/or that it is a supernatural feat?
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« Reply #236 on: October 08, 2011, 03:57:13 PM »

No other human could fast forty days without feeling hunger by his own will and his own divine action.

Only Christ can choose to do something which is beyond human nature and it is done immediately by his own divine power acting in and through his own humanity.

For every other one who is human it is necessary for the external will of God to choose to act for us in some way and then act upon our humanity.
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« Reply #237 on: October 08, 2011, 07:22:34 PM »

If you are happy saying that Christ worked wonders by his own divine power in his own humanity then why do you have a problem accepting that by his divine power he caused his humanity not to feel hunger for forty days, as the Fathers teach?
Do you think that no other human could fast forty days without experiencing hunger and/or that it is a supernatural feat?

I would like to hear your answer to Father's question.
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« Reply #238 on: October 08, 2011, 07:43:47 PM »

Yes, as has been mentioned, some Ascetics do not feel hunger by virtue of God's grace and outward unity with them. Whereas in the case of Christ, He refrained from hunger by virtue of the hypostatic union between the Divine and human energies. That is, He refrained from hunger by virtue of His own Divine power.
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« Reply #239 on: October 08, 2011, 08:13:07 PM »

I think it was His own divine power operating in and through his humanity by nature, in the same manner that His divine power operates in and through a saint's humanity by grace.

Nicholas,

Could you unpack this statement a bit? I'm confused as to how you are meaning 'by nature' and 'by grace'.
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« Reply #240 on: October 08, 2011, 08:16:35 PM »

I think it was His own divine power operating in and through his humanity by nature, in the same manner that His divine power operates in and through a saint's humanity by grace.

Nicholas,

Could you unpack this statement a bit? I'm confused as to how you are meaning 'by nature' and 'by grace'.
I do not wish to speak on his behalf, but I think Nicholas is saying that Christ, through his Divine energy, uses his human energy to perform all his own acts "by nature", that is, by virtue of the natural and hypostatic union. Whereas, in the case of a Saint, God's Divine energy operates through them "by grace", that is by virtue of an external unity.
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« Reply #241 on: October 10, 2011, 01:16:21 PM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!


I think it was His own divine power operating in and through his humanity by nature, in the same manner that His divine power operates in and through a saint's humanity by grace. I also believe that everything God the Son does he does by, in and through the operation of the Holy Spirit in and to the glory of God the Father.


Slow your roll there, two things.  The deification and Grace experienced by the Saints is different from the Divine-Human hypostatic Union in the Person of Jesus Christ. They are similar in mechanics, that is in the context of the iron and heat analogy, however there is a difference, because in this analogy of Deification the heat source is the Divine which is separate from the iron substantially and physically, however Christ is Divine and so in His Incarnation is His own heat source to ignite the iron of His inherent Humanity.  Whereas we humans and the Saints, must gain His Grace as an outside heat source to deify and excite our humanity towards His Divinity.

You said it correctly the first way, that by His own Divine power operating in and through his humanity by nature, but you must be clear.  By humanity you must be specifying "human body/flesh" to be on conformity to the Fathers.  His Human Nature and Divine Nature cooperate in synergy because they exist in Union.  Therefore Christ the Son does not need to operate in and through the Holy Spirit, rather Christ is the Word, the Second Person of the Trinity and acts on His own, or more specifically, all Three cooperate as One Divine operation.  It sounds that you were insinuating that Christ acts by the Grace of the Holy Spirit, as do the Saints, and that is inaccurate, that is the Adoptionist heresy which teaches that Christ is a human who inhereted by adoption or by unction of the Spirit Divine Grace to become Divine.  Jesus Christ is the Word, who has always existed in One Essence with the Father and the Holy Spirit, but He does not strictly need either of These, because He is God outright by His own Nature as well.

In regards to Father Peter's points about the Great Fast, remember that the Fathers are saying that in time Jesus Christ in His Flesh chose to perform a Divine act and sustain His own Humanity (which was inherently weak and needed sustenance) just as He did in other instances in the Gospel like in John 4

Quote
Meanwhile his disciples urged him, “Rabbi, eat something.” But he said to them, “I have food to eat that you know nothing about.”Then his disciples said to each other, “Could someone have brought him food?” “My food,” said Jesus, “is to do the will of him who sent me and to finish his work.


They are speaking of Christ actually overriding his human passions in specific instances, and that to allow himself to experience those passions is something he has to "check off on" moment by moment.

See, if you liked my metabolism analogy, then you should start to see how they both conform equally.

Yes, Jesus Christ has a perfect Humanity which must be sustained perpetually by the power of His Divinity, just as our own mortal human bodies require the Grace of God to sustain our own existence, otherwise we would simply dematerialize into nonexistence.  However, Jesus Christ did not forgo His Divinity in the Incarnation, He is always Divine.  He sustains Himself.  Yes, He subjects Himself to feel the passions of our hunger or pain, however He is Divine can ALWAYS negate these in any instant.  Yes then, He precisely has to "check off/on" the momentary weaknesses of His Humanity in regards to the passions.  When I was explaining how His Humanity is real, it is because like our own Humanity it requires the Divine power of God to sustain Its own existence.  Again, Jesus Christ, IS GOD, and therefore He sustains Himself by His own power.  This is how His humanity is always real, always perfect, always human, in that it is always and perpetually mortal and is ever dependent upon the Divine power to be sustained into existence.  
However, in being incorporated into the Divine Union in the Incarnation, Jesus Christ has a peculiar Humanity, in that it is perfectly mortal in the same mechanical sense as our own, and yet in being inherently interconnected with the source of the Divine, even His humanity becomes part of a self-existing cohesion.  He then does not strictly need food, or further strictly feels pain, however in being perfectly Human He is and remains capable of these by His Will, if He chooses to subject Himself to them.  He is mortal, but not forced into our passions, these are voluntary aspects of His Will.  When He hungers, it is a chose to feel this hunger, otherwise He can forgo the passion as the Fathers suggest regarding the 40 days.  He is still mortally human and yet Divine, regardless if He does not need physical food or ATP chemical energy to keep the metabolism of His bodily cells animate, He still needs His own Divinity to simply exist.  See, in our fully human state, we need BOTH the chemical energy as food and also the Grace of His Divinity to sustain our very existence.


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« Reply #242 on: October 10, 2011, 02:16:37 PM »

In addition to the iron and fire analogy, St. Cyril uses the example of the Burning Bush to illustrate how, in the Hypostatic Union, the Divine and human natures remain intact and unconfused; but with the human nature being transfigured by its union with the Divine:

Quote from: On the Unity of Christ
He [did not] regard the economy as unacceptable by disdaining the limitations involved in the self-emptying.... Godhead is one thing, and manhood is another thing, considered in the perspective of their respective and intrinsic beings, but in the case of Christ they came together in a mysterious and incomprehensible union without confusion or change.... If they think that because the nature of man is as nothing before the divine pre-eminence, then this means that it must be "hidden away" and overwhelmed,... we reply: "You are mistaken".... It was not impossible to God, in his loving-kindness, to make himself capable of bearing the limitations of the manhood.... He came down in the form of fire onto the bush in the desert, and the fire played upon the shrub but did not consume it.... How did this inflammable substance endure the assaults of the flame? ...this event was a type of a mystery, of how the divine nature of the Word supported the limitations of the manhood; because he chose to.
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« Reply #243 on: October 21, 2011, 03:39:29 PM »

I do not wish to speak on his behalf, but I think Nicholas is saying that Christ, through his Divine energy, uses his human energy to perform all his own acts "by nature", that is, by virtue of the natural and hypostatic union. Whereas, in the case of a Saint, God's Divine energy operates through them "by grace", that is by virtue of an external unity.
Why can't Christ do both?
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« Reply #244 on: October 21, 2011, 04:15:50 PM »

I do not wish to speak on his behalf, but I think Nicholas is saying that Christ, through his Divine energy, uses his human energy to perform all his own acts "by nature", that is, by virtue of the natural and hypostatic union. Whereas, in the case of a Saint, God's Divine energy operates through them "by grace", that is by virtue of an external unity.
Why can't Christ do both?

The hypostatic union is of a different character than the union of God with a saint by Grace. So, while He, I suppose, could do something through His humanity by Grace, it would sort of be superfluous (for lack of a more accurate term).
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« Reply #245 on: October 21, 2011, 04:18:46 PM »

I do not wish to speak on his behalf, but I think Nicholas is saying that Christ, through his Divine energy, uses his human energy to perform all his own acts "by nature", that is, by virtue of the natural and hypostatic union. Whereas, in the case of a Saint, God's Divine energy operates through them "by grace", that is by virtue of an external unity.
Why can't Christ do both?

The hypostatic union is of a different character than the union of God with a saint by Grace. So, while He, I suppose, could do something through His humanity by Grace, it would sort of be superfluous (for lack of a more accurate term).
Did the Holy Spirit descend upon Christ as a demo, or truly?
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« Reply #246 on: October 21, 2011, 04:23:33 PM »

I do not wish to speak on his behalf, but I think Nicholas is saying that Christ, through his Divine energy, uses his human energy to perform all his own acts "by nature", that is, by virtue of the natural and hypostatic union. Whereas, in the case of a Saint, God's Divine energy operates through them "by grace", that is by virtue of an external unity.
Why can't Christ do both?

The hypostatic union is of a different character than the union of God with a saint by Grace. So, while He, I suppose, could do something through His humanity by Grace, it would sort of be superfluous (for lack of a more accurate term).
Did the Holy Spirit descend upon Christ as a demo, or truly?

But what does the descent of the Holy Spirit mean? (I ask this sincerely from you and anyone else. I would be interested to know.)

From the Incarnation, He was fully God.
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« Reply #247 on: October 21, 2011, 04:28:32 PM »

I do not wish to speak on his behalf, but I think Nicholas is saying that Christ, through his Divine energy, uses his human energy to perform all his own acts "by nature", that is, by virtue of the natural and hypostatic union. Whereas, in the case of a Saint, God's Divine energy operates through them "by grace", that is by virtue of an external unity.
Why can't Christ do both?

The hypostatic union is of a different character than the union of God with a saint by Grace. So, while He, I suppose, could do something through His humanity by Grace, it would sort of be superfluous (for lack of a more accurate term).
Did the Holy Spirit descend upon Christ as a demo, or truly?

But what does the descent of the Holy Spirit mean? (I ask this sincerely from you and anyone else. I would be interested to know.)

From the Incarnation, He was fully God.
God knows all things.

The Incarnate God grew in Wisdom and Stature and probably thought that mustard seeds were the smallest seeds in the world.
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« Reply #248 on: October 21, 2011, 04:31:32 PM »

But what does the descent of the Holy Spirit mean? (I ask this sincerely from you and anyone else. I would be interested to know.)
I believe there is a sense, and we must be careful here, because the adoptionists fed off of this back in the day;

But there is a sense that Christ's Divine Sonship was made manifest at his baptism. It was the mystical beginning of his ministry. Something actually happened, it was not a demo. Of course from eternity he had the Holy Spirit indwelling him in Perichoresis.
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« Reply #249 on: October 21, 2011, 04:34:34 PM »

What do you mean that the Holy Spirit indwelt the Word from eternity?

What do you find the Fathers saying about the descent of the Holy Spirit upon the Christ in the waters of the Jordan?
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« Reply #250 on: October 21, 2011, 04:51:06 PM »

What do you mean that the Holy Spirit indwelt the Word from eternity?

"The Hypostases [of the Trinity] dwell and are established firmly in one another. For they are inseparable and cannot part from one another, but keep to their separate courses within one another, without coalescing or mingling, but cleaving to each other. For the Son is in the Father and the Spirit; and the Spirit in the Father and the Son; and the Father in the Son and the Spirit, but there is no coalescence or commingling or confusion."

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« Reply #251 on: October 21, 2011, 04:58:01 PM »

I think you are confusing the relations of the Divine Trinity in their Divinity with the relation of the Holy Spirit to Christ in the economy. They are not the same things.

John of Damascus is not talking about the descent of the Holy Spirit in the Jordan. I sense that you are wanting to say that somehow the man Jesus Christ received some new relation with God at this point?

I am asking what you find the Fathers saying about THIS relation.
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« Reply #252 on: October 21, 2011, 05:01:02 PM »

I think you are confusing the relations of the Divine Trinity in their Divinity with the relation of the Holy Spirit to Christ in the economy. They are not the same things.
I didn't say they were. I was saying that the Logos in eternity was indwelt by the Holy Spirit. I said this to avoid implying that Christ was not God but rather a man only who first encountered the Holy Spirit at baptism.

I sense that you are wanting to say that somehow the man Jesus Christ received some new relation with God at this point?
No. I'm saying that the Incarnate Logos manifested his Sonship at baptism and something actually occurred, it wasn't just a demo for humans and the gospel writers.

I am asking what you find the Fathers saying about THIS relation.
Father, I don't know, and I don't think it's fair to turn every discussion into a patristics fest.
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« Reply #253 on: October 21, 2011, 05:02:11 PM »

Here's what St. Cyril says about the Holy Spirit's role in the Jordan River:

But He Who is the Firstborn among us, when He became so among many brethren, and yielded Himself to emptiness, was the first to receive the Spirit, although Himself the Giver of the Spirit, that this dignity, and the grace of fellowship with the Holy Ghost might reach us by His means. Something like this Paul also teaches us, where speaking both of Him and us, he says, "For both He that sanctifieth, and they that are sanctified, are all of One: for which reason He is not ashamed to call them His brethren, saying, I will declare Thy name to My brethren." For as being in no degree ashamed to call us brethren, whose likeness He took, therefore, having transferred to Himself our poverty, He is sanctified with us, although Himself the Sanctifier of all creation; that thou mightest not see Him refusing the measure of human nature, Who consented for the salvation and life of all to become man.

When therefore the wise Evangelist says of Him, "But Jesus being full of the Spirit returned from the Jordan," be not offended, nor err from the mark in thy inward thoughts, and wander from the doctrine of the truth, as to the way and manner in which the Word, Who is God, was sanctified: but rather understand the wisdom of the economy, by reason of which also He is the object of our admiration. For He was made flesh and became man, not to avoid whatever belongs to man's estate, and despise our poverty, but that we might be enriched with what is His, by His having been made like unto us in every particular, sin only excepted. He is sanctified therefore as man, but sanctifies as God: for being by nature God, He was made man.
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« Reply #254 on: October 21, 2011, 05:04:19 PM »

I would agree with St. Cyril there.
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« Reply #255 on: October 21, 2011, 05:12:07 PM »

I would agree with St. Cyril there.

Don't forget He is doing this not for Himself.  When He is baptized or when the Holy Spirit descends in Him, it is we who are baptized in Him, and who receives the Holy Spirit in Him.  I read this from the Cappadocians somewhere.
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« Reply #256 on: October 21, 2011, 05:50:03 PM »

I would agree with St. Cyril there.

Don't forget He is doing this not for Himself.
Everything Christ did was for us. Even when he ate to sustain himself, or when he slept.
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« Reply #257 on: October 21, 2011, 06:14:20 PM »

Nicholas. it is not possible to be Orthodox without always turning first and last to the Fathers, otherwise we are just rather exotic Protestants.
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« Reply #258 on: October 22, 2011, 10:08:25 AM »

I do not wish to speak on his behalf, but I think Nicholas is saying that Christ, through his Divine energy, uses his human energy to perform all his own acts "by nature", that is, by virtue of the natural and hypostatic union. Whereas, in the case of a Saint, God's Divine energy operates through them "by grace", that is by virtue of an external unity.
Why can't Christ do both?

The hypostatic union is of a different character than the union of God with a saint by Grace. So, while He, I suppose, could do something through His humanity by Grace, it would sort of be superfluous (for lack of a more accurate term).
Did the Holy Spirit descend upon Christ as a demo, or truly?

But what does the descent of the Holy Spirit mean? (I ask this sincerely from you and anyone else. I would be interested to know.)

From the Incarnation, He was fully God.
God knows all things.

The Incarnate God grew in Wisdom and Stature and probably thought that mustard seeds were the smallest seeds in the world.

He was likely familiar with smaller seeds. Mustard seeds are quite big.
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« Reply #259 on: October 22, 2011, 10:13:53 AM »

No. I'm saying that the Incarnate Logos manifested his Sonship at baptism and something actually occurred, it wasn't just a demo for humans and the gospel writers.

What is the difference between a manifestation and a demonstration as you see it?

When you say something "really occurred", can you describe or explain what you think that something is?
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« Reply #260 on: October 22, 2011, 10:32:59 AM »

Here's what St. Cyril says about the Holy Spirit's role in the Jordan River:

But He Who is the Firstborn among us, when He became so among many brethren, and yielded Himself to emptiness, was the first to receive the Spirit, although Himself the Giver of the Spirit, that this dignity, and the grace of fellowship with the Holy Ghost might reach us by His means. Something like this Paul also teaches us, where speaking both of Him and us, he says, "For both He that sanctifieth, and they that are sanctified, are all of One: for which reason He is not ashamed to call them His brethren, saying, I will declare Thy name to My brethren." For as being in no degree ashamed to call us brethren, whose likeness He took, therefore, having transferred to Himself our poverty, He is sanctified with us, although Himself the Sanctifier of all creation; that thou mightest not see Him refusing the measure of human nature, Who consented for the salvation and life of all to become man.

When therefore the wise Evangelist says of Him, "But Jesus being full of the Spirit returned from the Jordan," be not offended, nor err from the mark in thy inward thoughts, and wander from the doctrine of the truth, as to the way and manner in which the Word, Who is God, was sanctified: but rather understand the wisdom of the economy, by reason of which also He is the object of our admiration. For He was made flesh and became man, not to avoid whatever belongs to man's estate, and despise our poverty, but that we might be enriched with what is His, by His having been made like unto us in every particular, sin only excepted. He is sanctified therefore as man, but sanctifies as God: for being by nature God, He was made man.

In Homily 17 on John, Chrysostom says,

Quote
How then did you know Him? By the descent of the Spirit, he says. But again, lest any one should suppose that he was in need of the Spirit as we are, hear how he removes the suspicion, by showing that the descent of the Spirit was only to declare Christ. For having said, And I knew Him not, he adds, But He that sent me to baptize with water the Same said unto me, Upon whom you shall see the Spirit descending and remaining on Him, the same is He which baptizes with the Holy Ghost. John 1:33

Do you see that this was the work of the Spirit, to point out Christ? The testimony of John was indeed not to be suspected, but wishing to make it yet more credible, he leads it up to God and the Holy Spirit. For when John had testified to a thing so great and wonderful, so fit to astonish all his hearers, that He alone took on Him the sins of all the world, and that the greatness of the gift sufficed for so great a ransom, afterwards he proves this assertion. And the proof is that He is the Son of God, and that He needed not baptism, and that the object of the descent of the Spirit was only to make Him known. For it was not in the power of John to give the Spirit, as those who were baptized by him show when they say, We have not so much as heard whether there be any Holy Ghost. Acts 19:2 In truth, Christ needed not baptism, neither his nor any other; but rather baptism needed the power of Christ. For that which was wanting was the crowning blessing of all, that he who was baptized should be deemed worthy of the Spirit; this free gift then of the Spirit He added when He came.

Mina,

Can you (or anyone else) help me put these two Patristic statements together?
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« Reply #261 on: October 22, 2011, 11:50:16 AM »

I thought I'd look at the Hymns of St Severus and see what he writes about the baptism of our Lord. He wrote quite a few hymns on the Epiphany and they contain various reflections which are relevant to a consideration of 'what was taking place?'.

#15. "..by going down and being baptized in the river Jordan he hallowed the nature of water: and though he is the Son by nature, he receives testimony by the voice of the Father which came from above; and though he is himself the giver of the Spirit, he received the descent of the Holy Spirit. For he that lacketh not, who appeared as one that lacketh and was named the second Adam, became in all things a beginning to us.."
 
It seems to me that this hymn is stressing that in baptism Christ, the incarnate Word who is the giver of the Spirit, receives his own Spirit so that we might also receive the Spirit. Just as he is baptised, not for any sin, but to prepare the baptismal waters for our baptism.

#16. "..he.. went down into the river Jordan to John, inasmuch as he wished by his baptism to open before us an ascent leading up to heaven, and to lay in advance a sure foundation for the gift of adoption, and to bring the Holy Spirit upon flesh, and to crush the head of the evil one, the supraensual serpent, upon the waters.."

This hymn also uses the idea of the Word experiencing these things for OUR benefit, not his own. He pours the Spirit upon himself so that being united with his humanity we might also receive that same Spirit. He gpes down into the water that he may lead US up to heaven. Everything is for the sake of our salvation and for the will of God. It is not a necessity placed upon him because of his humanity. He is not baptised because he himself is sinful. He does not receive the Holy Spirit because he lacks it. In all cases it is for our sake and our own deficiency not his own.

#17. "..For our sake again, who are guilty persons subject to sin, he is baptized like the rest in the river Jordan like one guilty of sin, not because he needed cleansing, but that he might himself cleanse and hallow the water by his baptism, and illuminate the divine laver, which shone with the rays of the triple and single light of the Trinity through the goodwill of the Father, through the condescension of himself the Son, and through the descent of the Holy Spirit, which he received for our sake, when it flew like adove and came upon hm, though it is in him in essence.."

This again shows that St Severus believe it is for our sake, and not his own, that he is baptised and recieves the Holy Spirit, which he does not lack. This is all by way of a preparation for our own baptisms in which we will share in the life of the Word Incarnate.

#18. "..In proof that it is for our cleansing only and not from need that Jesus, who is God and the Word, our Saviour, is baptized, let us listen to the voice of John... how could he who is able to cleanse the Baptist himself be reckoned among the rest of those that are cleansed?"

Again we see that St Severus does not see that the baptism of Christ is based on any need in himself or in his humanity, but that it is for our sake. Several other of his hymns echo this same point of the baptism of Christ being a hallowing of the waters for our sake, and the beginning of our cleansing.
 
#22. "..he did not come to receive any addition.."

This reminds us the the Word lacks nothing in Himself or in his humanity.

#24. "..the Son and Word of God who became incarnate and became mam truly without variation from a mother standing in the water to be baptized, and making the water itself a sourec of life, inasmuch as he is himself by nature a fountain of life, and showing the Father, as he crise from above, by saying 'Thou art my beloved Son', bestowing the beginning of adoption on us ourselves and not on Christ for he who is himself alone a Son by nature needed not to become a son; and showing the Holy Spirit flying like a dove and coming from on high, and perfecting for us by his grace the gift of the laver of regeneration. For all things which he has in his essence as God, Christ received himself for us by dispensation, out of his great mercy"

Just as he did not need to become a son, so he did not need to recieve the Holy Spirit, but he was washed in the waters of baptism, given the title of sonship, and received the Holy Spirit entirely for us. In your the terms of Nicholas, it was a demonstration of the Trinitarian economy of our salvation. It was not for any need which Christ experienced as man. It was 'in all things...for us' and not for himself.

Let me also quote from #25 just because it says so much about the true and perfect humanity of Christ in which we believe.

#25. "..The Son and the Word of God, after he had of his own will lived with men as man since he indeed became incarnate and became man without variation, was standing on the bank of the river Jordan as an ordinary man among many; and John also saw him with the eye of the spirit and revealed and pointed him out as with the finger to the multitude...Therefore he that is complete by nature and came for our sake to fulfil all things, he of his own store gave and imparted divine baptism, while he himself received nothing from it, except our salvation, as the only good and merciful one".

We see here that far from receiving anything in baptism, rather Christ, the Word Incarnate, is giving of 'his own store', that is, from his own divine resources and authority. By participating in the Triune act of the Epiphany the Trinity act together to work out our salvation and prepare a means of reconciliation. Christ is revealed, but there has been no change in who he is. He has received nothing new at all.

How can he who is the giver of the Spirit receive it from another? Rather he himself sends his own Spirit upon his own flesh, not that he lacked the Spirit in any sense, but so that it might also be poured out on all those who would be united to his own flesh in their own baptism.
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« Reply #262 on: October 22, 2011, 01:52:24 PM »

Here's what St. Cyril says about the Holy Spirit's role in the Jordan River:

But He Who is the Firstborn among us, when He became so among many brethren, and yielded Himself to emptiness, was the first to receive the Spirit, although Himself the Giver of the Spirit, that this dignity, and the grace of fellowship with the Holy Ghost might reach us by His means. Something like this Paul also teaches us, where speaking both of Him and us, he says, "For both He that sanctifieth, and they that are sanctified, are all of One: for which reason He is not ashamed to call them His brethren, saying, I will declare Thy name to My brethren." For as being in no degree ashamed to call us brethren, whose likeness He took, therefore, having transferred to Himself our poverty, He is sanctified with us, although Himself the Sanctifier of all creation; that thou mightest not see Him refusing the measure of human nature, Who consented for the salvation and life of all to become man.

When therefore the wise Evangelist says of Him, "But Jesus being full of the Spirit returned from the Jordan," be not offended, nor err from the mark in thy inward thoughts, and wander from the doctrine of the truth, as to the way and manner in which the Word, Who is God, was sanctified: but rather understand the wisdom of the economy, by reason of which also He is the object of our admiration. For He was made flesh and became man, not to avoid whatever belongs to man's estate, and despise our poverty, but that we might be enriched with what is His, by His having been made like unto us in every particular, sin only excepted. He is sanctified therefore as man, but sanctifies as God: for being by nature God, He was made man.

In Homily 17 on John, Chrysostom says,

Quote
How then did you know Him? By the descent of the Spirit, he says. But again, lest any one should suppose that he was in need of the Spirit as we are, hear how he removes the suspicion, by showing that the descent of the Spirit was only to declare Christ. For having said, And I knew Him not, he adds, But He that sent me to baptize with water the Same said unto me, Upon whom you shall see the Spirit descending and remaining on Him, the same is He which baptizes with the Holy Ghost. John 1:33

Do you see that this was the work of the Spirit, to point out Christ? The testimony of John was indeed not to be suspected, but wishing to make it yet more credible, he leads it up to God and the Holy Spirit. For when John had testified to a thing so great and wonderful, so fit to astonish all his hearers, that He alone took on Him the sins of all the world, and that the greatness of the gift sufficed for so great a ransom, afterwards he proves this assertion. And the proof is that He is the Son of God, and that He needed not baptism, and that the object of the descent of the Spirit was only to make Him known. For it was not in the power of John to give the Spirit, as those who were baptized by him show when they say, We have not so much as heard whether there be any Holy Ghost. Acts 19:2 In truth, Christ needed not baptism, neither his nor any other; but rather baptism needed the power of Christ. For that which was wanting was the crowning blessing of all, that he who was baptized should be deemed worthy of the Spirit; this free gift then of the Spirit He added when He came.

Mina,

Can you (or anyone else) help me put these two Patristic statements together?


I think they're quite complementary.  St. Cyril elsewhere does not deny that Christ is not in need of baptism.  But that it's done so that WE are receiving the Holy Spirit IN HIM.  If anything, yes, baptism did become efficacious only when He entered the waters to bless it.  It is why "the free gift then of the Spirit He added" is no different than saying, "we are sanctified in Him when His very own Holy Spirit sanctifies His flesh."

I think the quotes from St. Severus Fr. Peter provided have a nice way to see how both St. Cyril and St. John can be complimentary.  He both hallowed the waters for baptism and hallowed all humanity in His flesh.
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« Reply #263 on: October 22, 2011, 02:17:28 PM »

He does not receive the Holy Spirit because he lacks it.

This idea reminds me if the Liturgy, where Christ offers, is offered to, and is Himself the Offering.
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« Reply #264 on: October 22, 2011, 03:36:50 PM »

JLatimer,

Yes, I agree with you. I do think that it is necessary to describe the Word Incarnate in these terms. He is not a 'bare' man with need of grace. Neither is he 'bare' divinity merely appearing as human. Rather he is himself God and man and himself sustains and fills his own humanity with his own divine presence and his own Spirit.
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« Reply #265 on: October 31, 2011, 06:23:08 PM »

Bumping this because I am still confused about how to describe 'what happened' at the Baptism.

Did Christ receive the Holy Spirit in His human nature?
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« Reply #266 on: October 31, 2011, 06:30:33 PM »

Bumping this because I am still confused about how to describe 'what happened' at the Baptism.

Did Christ receive the Holy Spirit in His human nature?
Yes, I can't find the exact quote at the time, but it is in here "On the Unity of Christ"
http://books.google.com/books?id=x0Lnu_cm-GAC&printsec=frontcover&dq=On+the+Unity+of+christ+baptism&hl=en#v=snippet&q=Spirit&f=false
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« Reply #267 on: October 31, 2011, 06:32:55 PM »

Bumping this because I am still confused about how to describe 'what happened' at the Baptism.

Did Christ receive the Holy Spirit in His human nature?
Yes, I can't find the exact quote at the time, but it is in here "On the Unity of Christ"
http://books.google.com/books?id=x0Lnu_cm-GAC&printsec=frontcover&dq=On+the+Unity+of+christ+baptism&hl=en#v=snippet&q=Spirit&f=false

Okay. That's what I thought, and what the Patristic texts posted here seem to say. But I'd like to have a better grasp of what that means. Was His flesh lacking the Holy Spirit beforehand?
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« Reply #268 on: October 31, 2011, 07:23:37 PM »

Bumping this because I am still confused about how to describe 'what happened' at the Baptism.

Did Christ receive the Holy Spirit in His human nature?
Yes, I can't find the exact quote at the time, but it is in here "On the Unity of Christ"
http://books.google.com/books?id=x0Lnu_cm-GAC&printsec=frontcover&dq=On+the+Unity+of+christ+baptism&hl=en#v=snippet&q=Spirit&f=false

Okay. That's what I thought, and what the Patristic texts posted here seem to say. But I'd like to have a better grasp of what that means. Was His flesh lacking the Holy Spirit beforehand?
No (I want to find where Pope St. Cyril deals with this exactly, because he is of course going to say it better than I would).
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« Reply #269 on: October 31, 2011, 08:06:24 PM »

Bumping this because I am still confused about how to describe 'what happened' at the Baptism.

Did Christ receive the Holy Spirit in His human nature?
Yes, I can't find the exact quote at the time, but it is in here "On the Unity of Christ"
http://books.google.com/books?id=x0Lnu_cm-GAC&printsec=frontcover&dq=On+the+Unity+of+christ+baptism&hl=en#v=snippet&q=Spirit&f=false

Okay. That's what I thought, and what the Patristic texts posted here seem to say. But I'd like to have a better grasp of what that means. Was His flesh lacking the Holy Spirit beforehand?
No (I want to find where Pope St. Cyril deals with this exactly, because he is of course going to say it better than I would).

St. Cyril speaks of His "emptiness" and "poverty" and says that "He is sanctified with us". What does all that mean if not that His flesh was somehow lacking sanctification prior to the Baptism?

Then on the other hand you have Chrysostom seeming to say that the descent of the Spirit was merely to make Christ known.
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