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Author Topic: Natural Human Processes Within the Body of Christ  (Read 827 times) Average Rating: 0
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Severian
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« on: May 28, 2012, 12:53:18 PM »

How would our own OO Christology explain natural processes within Christ's body? For example, dead skin, nails, blood shed from wounds, death and reproduction of his cells, etc. Would we say that these things are preserved/incorrupt by virtue of the hypostatic union, or do they diminish and disintegrate in accordance with their humanity? I think I have an idea as to the answer of this question, but I wanted to see what you all have to say about it and I have not really had the chance to read the writings of our great Christologians, as of late.
« Last Edit: May 28, 2012, 12:54:23 PM by Severian » Logged

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Severian
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« Reply #1 on: May 28, 2012, 12:59:31 PM »

How would our own OO Christology explain natural processes within Christ's body? For example, dead skin, nails, blood shed from wounds, death and reproduction of his cells, etc. Would we say that these things are preserved/incorrupt by virtue of the hypostatic union, or do they diminish and disintegrate in accordance with their humanity? I think I have an idea as to the answer of this question, but I wanted to see what you all have to say about it and I have not really had the chance to read the writings of our great Christologians, as of late.
Chalcedonians are also free to state their belief regarding this matter as I would like to see how our Christologies compare in this aspect. However, I do not want this to turn into a fight as I have created this thread for educational purposes.
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« Reply #2 on: May 28, 2012, 01:10:51 PM »

Le pin
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Severian
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« Reply #3 on: May 28, 2012, 01:13:38 PM »

NVM!
« Last Edit: May 28, 2012, 01:26:44 PM by Severian » Logged

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« Reply #4 on: May 28, 2012, 01:18:50 PM »

Le pin
Are you trying to say we should pin this thread? I just wanted to clarify what you meant.

I was just subscribing so I could follow it.

 However, if something becomes of it, I don't see why not.
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Severian
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« Reply #5 on: May 28, 2012, 03:52:49 PM »

I am surprised no one hase answered this yet.
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« Reply #6 on: May 28, 2012, 05:19:26 PM »

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

I don't have the time today, but both Saint Cyril and later Saint Severus discuss in detail issues like this and it would make a very insightful research project to compile respective references to this subject from these Oriental fathers.  The short, gleaned version:

Human beings are not self-existing.  Our nature is to be mortal (i.e., dependent upon the dynamic power of God) and our hypostasis reflects and manifests our inherently mortal nature in the tangible form of our human bodies.  However, just because our hypostatic bodies are mortal, does not mean that the power of God does not interact to manifest our very existence (mechanically speaking).  It could said to be the same mechanism then in the Incarnation.  Just as the Divine Essence of God is the source of His power to create and sustain the entirety of the Universe for ourselves, Jesus Christ's own perfectly natural and human Body depends fully upon His own inherent Divinity to even exist!  His human Body is as dependent on God as is our own, however He is God and so He rightfully depends upon Himself.  Does His finger nails then diminish like our own, yes, because that is the very nature and essence of the human form and body, to diminish physically over time.  However, the laws of entropy teach us that nothing physical every truly disappears, and further the doctrine of the Resurrection teaches that we shall be reanimated, and the atoms and molecules of our bodies, be they evaporated and decomposed, will be brought back together like the Dry Bones of Ezekiel 37.  So even if Jesus Christ's finger nails or hair seem to disappear, much like our own, the actual substance of them remains intact, albeit by the power of His Divinity.  His finger nails remain God's finger nails, but since by nature and kenosis God united with ordinary finger nails, they preserve a sense of ordinary-ness.  In the analogy of the iron and the heat, the iron of His human body is in no way changed by Its natural proximity to the Heat of His own Divinity. Our iron bodies require the outside heating element of His Divinity, but He Himself is Divine, and needs no such additions.  However, through kenosis, His iron remains Iron, it is not affected by the Heat to change into something different.  

stay blessed,
habte selassie
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« Reply #7 on: May 28, 2012, 06:39:29 PM »

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

I don't have the time today, but both Saint Cyril and later Saint Severus discuss in detail issues like this and it would make a very insightful research project to compile respective references to this subject from these Oriental fathers.  The short, gleaned version:

Human beings are not self-existing.  Our nature is to be mortal (i.e., dependent upon the dynamic power of God) and our hypostasis reflects and manifests our inherently mortal nature in the tangible form of our human bodies.  However, just because our hypostatic bodies are mortal, does not mean that the power of God does not interact to manifest our very existence (mechanically speaking).  It could said to be the same mechanism then in the Incarnation.  Just as the Divine Essence of God is the source of His power to create and sustain the entirety of the Universe for ourselves, Jesus Christ's own perfectly natural and human Body depends fully upon His own inherent Divinity to even exist!  His human Body is as dependent on God as is our own, however He is God and so He rightfully depends upon Himself.  Does His finger nails then diminish like our own, yes, because that is the very nature and essence of the human form and body, to diminish physically over time.  However, the laws of entropy teach us that nothing physical every truly disappears, and further the doctrine of the Resurrection teaches that we shall be reanimated, and the atoms and molecules of our bodies, be they evaporated and decomposed, will be brought back together like the Dry Bones of Ezekiel 37.  So even if Jesus Christ's finger nails or hair seem to disappear, much like our own, the actual substance of them remains intact, albeit by the power of His Divinity.  His finger nails remain God's finger nails, but since by nature and kenosis God united with ordinary finger nails, they preserve a sense of ordinary-ness.  In the analogy of the iron and the heat, the iron of His human body is in no way changed by Its natural proximity to the Heat of His own Divinity. Our iron bodies require the outside heating element of His Divinity, but He Himself is Divine, and needs no such additions.  However, through kenosis, His iron remains Iron, it is not affected by the Heat to change into something different.  

stay blessed,
habte selassie

Assuming that this is saying what I think it's saying (namely, that for Christ to be truly human would have required things like skin cells dying), then this is the same view that I have read from nearly every EO (and, as best I can recall, every EO of any note - that is, those who are known outside of solely the internet).
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« Reply #8 on: May 28, 2012, 06:44:45 PM »

I am monitoring this thread  Grin
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Severian
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« Reply #9 on: May 28, 2012, 07:29:46 PM »

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

I don't have the time today, but both Saint Cyril and later Saint Severus discuss in detail issues like this and it would make a very insightful research project to compile respective references to this subject from these Oriental fathers.  The short, gleaned version:

Human beings are not self-existing.  Our nature is to be mortal (i.e., dependent upon the dynamic power of God) and our hypostasis reflects and manifests our inherently mortal nature in the tangible form of our human bodies.  However, just because our hypostatic bodies are mortal, does not mean that the power of God does not interact to manifest our very existence (mechanically speaking).  It could said to be the same mechanism then in the Incarnation.  Just as the Divine Essence of God is the source of His power to create and sustain the entirety of the Universe for ourselves, Jesus Christ's own perfectly natural and human Body depends fully upon His own inherent Divinity to even exist!  His human Body is as dependent on God as is our own, however He is God and so He rightfully depends upon Himself.  Does His finger nails then diminish like our own, yes, because that is the very nature and essence of the human form and body, to diminish physically over time.  However, the laws of entropy teach us that nothing physical every truly disappears, and further the doctrine of the Resurrection teaches that we shall be reanimated, and the atoms and molecules of our bodies, be they evaporated and decomposed, will be brought back together like the Dry Bones of Ezekiel 37.  So even if Jesus Christ's finger nails or hair seem to disappear, much like our own, the actual substance of them remains intact, albeit by the power of His Divinity.  His finger nails remain God's finger nails, but since by nature and kenosis God united with ordinary finger nails, they preserve a sense of ordinary-ness.  In the analogy of the iron and the heat, the iron of His human body is in no way changed by Its natural proximity to the Heat of His own Divinity. Our iron bodies require the outside heating element of His Divinity, but He Himself is Divine, and needs no such additions.  However, through kenosis, His iron remains Iron, it is not affected by the Heat to change into something different. 

stay blessed,
habte selassie
If I am fully understanding what you are saying, I think what you have said is consistent with what I had originally thought reagrding this situation. I just wanted to check.
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« Reply #10 on: May 28, 2012, 09:01:52 PM »

If someone could post patristic references regarding this topic, that would be great. I am sure St. Severus wrote about this, but it has been so long since I have been able to read his wonderful works. When the semester is finished and when I (hopefully) ace my finals exams I really would like to get back into reading about theology and Church history.
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« Reply #11 on: May 29, 2012, 02:42:14 AM »

I'm not sure what the Church fathers would have believed.  To be honest, I don't think they ever thought of nails and hair as dead cells accumulating.  Our epidermis alone has at least 4-5 layers, and topmost layer (stratum corneum) is made of dead cells as well.  Church fathers never knew this, and I don't think we'll know the answer.  Either answer might be acceptable considering these tiny things were never discussed or understood.

For instance, perhaps one can say that the Fall lead to these things.  Does that mean that we had hair, nails, and stratum corneum made out of living cells? Does that mean those layers never existed before the Fall? Or are they pre-Fall conditions?  Perhaps, these are things Christ did have, perhaps not.  I honestly don't think one can answer this.  Some people feel these are an essential part of human nature, and therefore Christ must have them.  After all, if one can say Christ allowed to be hurt and bleed, one can also say Christ allowed dead skin cells to form in the form of hair, nails, and stratum corneum.

But in the end, I'm not sure how one can answer this question in the clearest sense.  I think to say Christ was fully human and allowed certain fallen conditions to come upon His humanity without sin would be the clearest teachings of Christology we can agree upon, without going into unnecessary details.

Nevertheless, St. John's Revelations reveal a picture of Christ both awesome and frightening, a Christ with white hair and lots of light and whiteness, eyes flames of fire (the lens in the eyes also dead cells), brass feet (thickest stratum corneum you can have).  Could this reveal the type of body we might have?
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« Reply #12 on: June 07, 2012, 10:39:39 PM »

Did any of our Fathers comment on what happened to the Lord's foreskin in Luke 2:21, which describes His circumcision?
« Last Edit: June 07, 2012, 10:57:08 PM by Severian » Logged

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« Reply #13 on: June 07, 2012, 10:50:26 PM »

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

Did any of our Fathers comment on what happened to the Lord's foreskin in Luke 2:21, which describes the Lord's circumcision?

Dude, I know you are perhaps being serious, but that is joke from somewhere, but where..

stay blessed,
habte selassie
« Last Edit: June 07, 2012, 10:50:59 PM by HabteSelassie » Logged

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« Reply #14 on: June 08, 2012, 12:52:34 AM »

Did any of our Fathers comment on what happened to the Lord's foreskin in Luke 2:21, which describes His circumcision?
You just brought up one of the biggest embarassments to Christianity ever:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Holy_Prepuce
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« Reply #15 on: June 08, 2012, 01:05:04 AM »

EDIT: Hang on I'll click the link in a sec
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