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cil. But notwithstanding all these disadvantages, the truth prevailed, and the Council unanimously addressed their opinion to the Emperor in the following words: (Mansi, Sacr. Concil. Tom 3. p. 302.)
The Synodical Epistle delivered by the legates to Constantius.
(g) ‘In obedience to the command of God, and your pious edict, we have decided by our suffrages that those doctrines which have been delivered to us formerly, should be established as they have been handed down. For we have assembled at Ariminum from all the cities situated towards the West, that the faith of the Catholic Church might be recognised, and that those who hold a contrary opinion might be made manifest. And there, after a long deliberation, that faith is seen to be the best, which has endured from ancient times until now; which the Prophets and Evangelists and Apostles through our Lord Jesus Christ, preached, which is the guardian of your empire and the defender of your health. It is therefore decreed, that retaining it we should worship, and that worshipping according to it we should preserve it to the end. For we hold it unbecoming and unlawful, that we should desire to change aught of those things which were rightly and justly decreed and settled by an accurate deliberation, publicly, at the Council of Nice,
(g) ̔ Εκτε τῆς του κελεύσεως, και τῆς σης ευσεβείας προστάγματος, τὰ τὰ πάλαι δογματισθεντα γεγενησθαι πιςένομεν· εις γὰρ Αρίμινον εκ πασῶν τῶν προς δύσιν πόλεων, ἐις το αυτο πάντες επίσκοποι συνήλθομεν· ἵνα και ἡ πιστις τῆς καθολικῆς εκκλησίας γνωρισθῆ, και οι ταναντία φρονουντες ἔκδηλοι γένωνται· ὡς γὰρ επι πλεῖστον διασκοπούντες ευρήκαμεν, αρεστὸν εφάνε την πιςτιν την ἔκπαλαι διαμένουσαν, ἣν και οι προφῆται και τὰ ευαγγέλια, και οι απόστολοι διὰ του κυρίου ἡμῶν Ιησου Χριστου εκήρυξαν, του καὶ τῆς σῆς βασιλείας φρερου, καὶ τῆς σῆς ῥώσεως προςάτου· ἵνα ταύτην καταστ χόντες φυλάξωμεν, και φυλάττοντες μέχρι τέλος διατηρήσωμεν· ἄτοπον γὰρ και αθέμιτον εφάνη των όρθως και δικαίως ὠρισμένων τι μεταλλάσσειν, και των ἐν Νικαία κοινῇ μετά του ενδοξότατε πατρος και βασιλέως Κωνσταντι
before that most illustrious Prince Constantine your father, in which confession there is so much learning and wisdom, that it has been promulgated every where to the ears and minds of all men, to which the Arian heresy is hostile and mortally opposed; since, by it not only that but all other heresies are removed. With regard to which we judge it rash to add any thing, and perilous to take any thing away, for if any thing be done, the enemies of truth will be at liberty to do as they please,' &c.
$24. Having thus traced the Trinitarian faith, from the Creed of Irenæus, the Bishop of Lyons, who flourished about fifty years from the death of the Apostle John, down to the latter part of the fourth century-having seen it pervading the whole Catholic or Universal Church while it was under persecution, then raising the standard of orthodoxy under the emperor Constantine at the Council of Nice, and lastly resisting the power and influence of his son Constantius at the Council of Rimini, and having found it so firmly established that its very enemies, the Arians, with the emperor at their head, were compelled to retain the name and appearance of the Trinitarian doctrine in their confessions of faith, and actually fulminated the strongest anathemas against the opposers of it, we conclude this chapter by asking the enemies of Trinitarianism to point out only one Council which adopted their sentiments—to show us only one public confession of faith which ventured to approve them. If they cannot do this, is it unreasonable to say that whatever affinity they may claim
του εσκεμμένων, ὧν ἡ διδασκαλία τε και το φρόνημα διῆλθε και εκηρύχθη εις πασας ανθρώπων ακοας τε και διανοίας· τις αντιπαλος μόνη και ολες της τῆς Αρειου αἱρέσεως ὑπῆρξε δι ̓ ἧς οὐ μόνον αυτη, αλλα και αἱ λοιπαι αιρεσεις καθηρέθησαν· ἐν ᾧ ὄντως και το προσθεῖναι τι σφαλερον, και το αφελεσθαι επικινδυνον ὑπαρχει· ὡς ἔιπερ και θατερον γενοιτο, ἔσται, τοῖς εχθροῖς ἀδειὰ του ποιεῖν ἄπερ βούλοιντο.
with a few heretics which the Councils of the Arians themselves condemned, and whatever alliance they may make with modern philosophy, the time is at hand when every intelligent mind must see that the Primitive Church is absolute, decided, and unanimous against them.
The topics to which this chapter is devoted arise from the course of argument presented by the second discourse of the series, and are as follows, viz:
1. The illustrations employed to show that there is nothing absurd or unreasonable in the doctrine which maintains the Trinity of the Persons to be consistent with the Unity of Essence in the Godhead.
2. The Plurality of Persons intirnated by the phraseology of the Old Testament.
§ 1. The ancient fathers used many illustrations of the Trinitarian doctrine, in argument with heretics and unbelievers, of which we may extract a few specimens for the reader's satisfaction. In the copious commentary of Gelasius of Cyzicen on the council of Nice, (see Mansi Sacr. Concil. Tom. 2.) we have sundry examples from the disputation between the orthodox and the philosophers.
Thus, (p. 861.) Leontius, arguing with an Arian philosopher on the subject of the Holy Spirit, says that He is inseparable from the Father and the Son, as is the Son from the Father, and the Father from the Son. (a) 'Come,' continues Leontius, 'and let us see whether, by comparisons, however weak, you can receive instruction. Your word,
(a) Δεῦρο δέ, ἐι δοκεῖ, λάμβανε και δι ὑποδειγμάτων, ἐι και ασθενεστέρων, χρηστὰς ὑποθήκας, ὁ λόγος ὁ σος, και παντος ἀνθρώπου, προφορικός μεν
and that of every man, is pronounced, brought forth inseparably from the mind, and in like manner your spirit proceeds from you: nevertheless your word and your spirit cannot be separated from yourself, and this connexion in man, deserves to be considered by you. But in the ineffable essence of God which is above all understanding and is incomprehensible, the Word is not a thing pronounced, but always living and efficacious, sharper than any two edged sword,' &c.
A more interesting illustration, however, occurs a little farther on in the same disputation, (p. 863.) which for its piety, eloquence and ingenuity deserves to be transcribed more fully than our limits will allow. (b) Learn now, O philosopher,' says the same Leontius, and although we may act audaciously, yet may the Divine greatness be propitious to us; we undertake this work for the salvation of yourself and of others. Learn, therefore, intellectual things from the objects of sense; from those things which are subject to the understanding, learn those which are above it; and from those things which are declared, learn those which are unspeakable. For although all things which we behold and understand, either of things celestial or things upon the earth, or under the earth, cannot be compared with that uncreated, incomprehensible, and immortal
ἐστι, γεννᾶται δὲ ατμήτως ἐκ του σου νου, ὁμοίως καὶ το πνεύμα σου, και ἐκπορευέται ἐκ σου, και οὐκ ἂν οὐδὲ τον λόγον σε ὄντε το πνεύμα σου ἔιποις αλλότριόν σου. 2, T. 2.
(b) Μανθανε δὲ καὶ νυν, 5ω φιλόσοφε, ἐι καὶ τολμηρον ποιούμεν, αλλά ἵλεως ἡμῖν ἡ θεία μεγαλείοτης ὑπὲρ γὰρ τῆς σῆς καὶ τῶν λοιπων σωτηρίας ὁ πόνος ἡμῖν διανύεται, μανθανε τοίνυν ἐκ των αἰσθητων περί των νοητων, καὶ εκ των κατά νουν περι των υπερ νουν, και ἐκ των λεγομένων περι των ὑπὲρ λόγον· ἐι και ασύγκριτα παντα τα τε δρώμενα, τα τε νοούμενα, των τε οὐρανίων και ἐπιγείων και καταχθονίων κτισμάτων, προς την ἄκτιστον ἐκε ένην και ακαταληπτον και αθανατον τού Θεού ουσιαν· πλην το έμπεσον