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Author Topic: Another Ephesus II thread  (Read 1009 times) Average Rating: 0
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deusveritasest
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« on: January 28, 2010, 07:30:12 PM »

This is going to be pretty simple. Could someone just provide a summary of what the most significant decisions of Ephesus II were?
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« Reply #1 on: January 29, 2010, 08:02:40 AM »

Hi deusveritasest,

The council was called by the Emperor Theodosius the Younger, who had previously called the First Council of Ephesus in 431 AD.

It was called to deal with the controversy surrounding what appeared to be a resurgence of Theodoreanism in the East. Ibas had been producing Syriac translations of Theodore's works, Theodoret had been confined to his See as having a doubtful Orthodoxy, Nestorius' fellow exile Irenaeus had made his way back to the East and become the bishop of Tyre. The final straw came when Eutyches, a fairly well-known Archimandrite of Constantinople, was condemned by the Home Synod of Constantinople as an Apollinarian. The language used in the prosecution would have condemned St Cyril himself and was a clear challenge to the unsteady settlement of 433 AD which was already breaking down. Of course the agreement of 433 AD was never more than a sticking plaster since both sides understood that the other had capitulated, while of course neither had done.

At Ephesus II the first issue was dealing with the condemnation of Eutyches, and in consequence the position of Eusebius and Flavian. I have written about Eutyches and those aspects of Ephesus II relevant to his case here http://www.britishorthodox.org/117m.php.

The second session dealt with the following cases - all generally associated with the resurgence of Theodoreanism.

1. Ibas, bishop of Edessa - very important and detailed depositions. He was well known as an active supporter of Theodore and an opponent of St Cyril of Alexandria, and had written the Letter to Maris which was presented here.

2. Daniel of Charrae - he was Ibas' nephew, and had already admitted to adultery and other moral defects and had presented a resignation in a previous enquiry so that there would be no scandal before the pagans. The case had been remitted to the ecumenical council.

3. Irenaeus of Tyre - He had been exiled with Nestorius but returned and was consecrated a bishop by Theodoret. He had already been the subject of an imperial order in 448AD ordering him not to dress as or call himself a bishop.

4. Aquilinus of Byblus - He had been consecrated by Irenaeus of Tyre. He had constantly refused to condemn Nestorius.

5. Sophronius of Constantia - He was also a nephew of Ibas. He was accused by local clergy and monks of praticing astrology. His case was reserved to whoever would be consecrated bishop of Edessa in place of Ibas - since Sophronius was a suffragan.

6. Theodoret - Another major case. Modern scholarship concurs with the view of the council that he never changed from his pre-Ephesine Christology, which was essentially Theodorean. Among the evidence presented against him was a book he had written - An Apology of Theodoret, Bishop, on behalf of Diodore and Theodore, Warriors for the True Religion.

[Domnus of Antioch] - He has been ill and absent from the proceedings but sends a note saying that he approves of all that has taken place.

7. Domnus of Antioch - He was a friend of Theodoret and allowed him to preach in his own Church, and failed to take any action against Ibas. He had not condemned Irenaeus. He professed himself unable to accept the 12 Chapters of St Cyril because his bishops and clergy would all abandon him if he did.

There then follows a decree of the Emperor Theodosius confirming the authority of the ecumencal council.

I hope this brief outline helps a little.

Father Peter
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« Reply #2 on: January 29, 2010, 09:19:51 PM »

Thank you, Father Peter!

I am curious, was there any more explicit definition on the status of the Formula of Reunion itself? Also, I have heard that supposedly this council condemned the "two natures after the union" formulas. Is this the case?
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« Reply #3 on: January 29, 2010, 10:53:00 PM »

One effect of capital importance was that Jerusalem was made a Patriarchate.
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« Reply #4 on: January 30, 2010, 07:56:34 PM »


One effect of capital importance was that Jerusalem was made a Patriarchate.

Was it? I've always been told that that was done at Chalcedon.
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« Reply #5 on: February 23, 2010, 01:31:21 AM »

*bump*
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« Reply #6 on: February 23, 2010, 08:32:00 AM »

It seems that in the period before Chalcedon, Juvenal had gained control over the two Phoenicias and the three Palestines. But it is not clear at all that this was effected at Ephesus II. It seems that it was recognised in passing that he had control over these regions, because one of the complaints against Domnus was that he had intruded a bishop into a see which should have been subject to Juvenal. And it seems also that the Emperor Theodosius had also issued a statement at some time recognising this situation.

At Chalcedon, Maximus and Juvenal had come to some sort of agreement whereby the terrritories were split between them, and it is also mentioned that the dispute had been of rather longstanding.

So I imagine that before 449 AD Juvenal had gained control over the two Phoenicias and the three Palestines. This was disputed by Antioch who were not well enough organised to prevail. In 451 AD the situation was resolved in a manner which suited both parties. Juvenal was certainly in a much less secure position, and in the end he still preserved the patriarchal position he had spent decades trying to attain.

Father Peter
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« Reply #7 on: February 23, 2010, 04:33:11 PM »

I am curious, was there any more explicit definition on the status of the Formula of Reunion itself? Also, I have heard that supposedly this council condemned the "two natures after the union" formulas. Is this the case?
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« Reply #8 on: February 23, 2010, 04:50:45 PM »

I'll need to check, but off the top of my head.

i. The formula of reunion was clearly insufficient since Ibas and Co. read it as saying that St Cyril had accepted the Christology of Theodore of Mopsuestia.

ii. Yes, I think that 'two natures after the union' was rejected many times. One example...

Then Seleucus, the Bishop of Amasia, said in his Deposition :

We believe in our Lord Jesus Christ, in The Word from God, in the Light of Light, in the Two Natures after the INCARNATION and the Assumption of Flesh which was received of the Holy Mary. And we proclaim him who thinks differently from this to be estranged from the Church (as excommunicate).

And when these things were read, the Holy Synod at Ephesus said :

No body proclaims our Lord to be Two after The INCARNATION nobody Divides that which is Indivisible Nestorius did this.


Of course this duality which is rejected is that of Theodore, Ibas, Thedoret and Nestorius, and is not a rejection of diversity. There are plenty of other passages which confirm that Ephesus II confesses the integrity and reality of the humanity of Christ.

Father Peter
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« Reply #9 on: February 23, 2010, 04:59:09 PM »

Are there any sources for the first session of the council?
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« Reply #10 on: February 23, 2010, 05:04:54 PM »

Yes. Most of it was read into Chalcedon.

Although don't use the CCEL online partial version of the Acts. You need Richard Price's new and scholarly edition of the Acts.

You can also find it in Perry's edition of the Acts of Ephesus II.

Father Peter
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« Reply #11 on: February 23, 2010, 05:09:34 PM »

Thank you Father.
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