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contains all. Nevertheless hear this from us: we have not set before you one God and another, as the impious Arius blasphemes, declaring that there is one God uncreated, and another created, and that the Holy Spirit is in like manner created-God forbid! But we have maintained that One Divinity is to be thought on and believed, one essence, one dominion, and one will of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Ghost. Know, therefore, that the persons of the Sacred Trinity are not disjoined, or local, but that we are to conceive and believe but the one Divinity, as we have repeatedly declared, of the holy and consubstantial and adorable Trinity.’
Turning now to the pages of Athanasius, another of the chosen witnesses of Mr. Sparks, we shall cite a passage from his Book of Questions, addressed to Antiochus. Op. Athan. ed. Colon. 1686. tom. 2. p. 331. In this book, a Christian puts questions on difficult points, and Athanasius answers him.
(i) 'We,' saith the supposed inquirer, 'believe in the consubstantial Trinity, and are baptised, and confess that the Father is God, and the Son is God, and in like manner that
ρεχουσα, καὶ τὰ πάντα περιέχουσα. πλην ἄκουε πρὸς ἡμῶν. ουκ ἄλλον σοι Θεον καὶ ἄλλον ἑιρήκαμεν, καθάπερ και ὁ ἀσεβης ἐβλασφήμησεν ”Αρειός, ένα Θεον ἄκτιστον, και ἄλλον κτιστον ειρηκὼς, και το πνεύμα τοῦ Θεοῦ ὁμοίως κτιστον κεκηρυχώς. μη γενόιτο. αλλά μίαν θεότητα νοεῖσθαι και πιστεύεσθαι ἐιρήκαμεν, μίαν οὐσίαν, κυριότητα τε και βουλήν μίαν του πατρος και του ύιου και τε ἁγίου πνεύματος· ἐιδέναι τε τὰς τῆς ἁγίας τριάδος ὑποστάσεις οὐ διεζευγμένας, οὐδὲ τοπικὰς, αλλὰ πίστει μόνῃ μίαν θεότητα νοεισθαι και πιστεύεσθαι, καθά και πολλάκις ειρήκαμεν, τῆς ἁγίας και ὁμοουσίου και προσκυνητῆς τριάδος.
(i) Πιστεύσαντες και βαπτισθέντες εις Τριάδα ὁμοούσιον, και λέγοντες Θεον εἶναι τον Πατέρα, ὁμοίως καὶ Θεὸν ειναι τον Γιον. ὡσαύτως δε και Θεον ειναι το Πνευμα το ἅγιον, πῶς οὐ λέγομεν τρεῖς Θεούς ; αλλ ̓ ἕνα και
the Holy Ghost is God. Why now do we not say that there are three Gods, instead of saying that there is only one? And if truly we adore one God, is it not plain that we imitate the Jews by believing in the Monarchy: on the other hand, if we adore three Gods, do we not fall into the error of the Greeks, as persons who run into Polytheism, instead of worshipping piously one God alone?'
(k) “ The necessary reason and mode of piety, is only obtained by faith, nor is the Deity to be known and worshipped by scrutiny. For the god who IS COMPREHENSIBLE, IS NOT GOD. For if we are unable to comprehend with our mind, the angels, and our own souls, which are creatures,
how much more should he who is the Maker of them be incomprehensible. The mystery which is known, is no longer a subject of our reverential wonder. The faith, therefore, of Christians, that God is in three persons, is not to be understood after the manner of men, as the Grecians feign, nor, on the other hand, is it a belief in three Gods separate from each other. Away with this Grecian mythology. For the indivisible Godhead is in three
perμόνον Θεόν, και ἐιμὲν ἕνα προσκυνουμεν Θεόν· ἔυδηλον ὡς εις μοναρχίαν πιστεύοντες, Ιεδαιζομεν· ει δὲ πάλιν τρεῖς Θεούς, προδηλον ὅτι Ελληνίζομεν, πολυθείαν εισάγοντες, και οὐχ ἕνα μόνον Θεον ευσεβῶς προσκυνούντες.
(k) Απερίεργος ὁ λόγος και ὁ τροπος τῆς ἐυσεβείας, πίζει μονῃ, αλλ' οὐκ ἐξερευνήσει γνωριζόμενος και τιμώμενος. Θεος γὰρ καταλαμβανομενος, οὐκ ἔστι Θεός· ἐι γὰρ τοὺς Αγγέλους, ἢ τὰς ἡμετέρας ψυχὰς κτίσματα ὄντα καταλαβεῖν οὐ δυνάμεθα· πόσῳ (γε) μᾶλλον ἀυτὸν τὸν τούτων ποιητὴν, πρέπει το ειναι ἀκατάληπτον; μυστήριον γὰρ γνωριζόμενον, ὀυδέν ἐστι λοιπον θαυμαζόμενον· οὐκ οὖν ἡ Χριστιανῶν πιςις, καὶ ὁ τούτων τρισύποστάτος Θεος, ὄντε εις ἐστιν [τὴν ὑπόστασιν] ἀνθρωπόμορφος, ὡς ὁι Ελλήνων παῖδες μυθευόνται. ὄντε πάλιν τρεῖς τινες Θεοί, ὥσπερ ἀλλήλων ἀπέχοντες, ἄπαγε τῆς ̔Ελληνικῆς μυθολογίας. Αδιαίρετος γὰρ ἐν (ταῖς) τρισὶν ὑποφάσεσιν ἡ τῆς μιᾶς ουσίας θεότης. πλὴν ἐιδέναι χρὴ, ὅτι περ
sons of the one essence. Moreover, it is fit that we should know how impossible it is for the mind of man to comprehend with the thoughts, or to declare in words, the. mystery of the Deity. For those who have hastened to comprehend God, have followed their own shadow; and those who have presumed to say aught of the Divine essence have sought to measure an abyss with their hand; . and those who have dared to penetrate into this depth have fallen into wicked heresies. For God is Father, not as I who am a creature, am a father, nor has he begotten, as I, a created son. Neither is the Son begotten like any carnal son, nor is the Holy Ghost circumscribed, like the spirit of man: but the mystery of the Holy Trinity is ineffable and inexplicable. Nor should you say for what cause is it so? Since it is above all cause. Neither enquire in what mode? For this Divine mode of Being is above all modes. Neither say by what reason? Because this Divine reason is above all other reason. But believe in the Father, without scrutinizing his paternity, and adore the Son, without curiously inquiring into his generation, and sing hymns to the Holy Spirit, without prying into the mystery of the Holy Trinity. Come hither to Jordan, and
ὄντε ᾧήμασιν, οντε ἐνθυμήμασι καταλαβεῖν, ἢ διηγήσασθαι, τὶ τῆς θεότητος νοῦς ἀνθρώπινος δύναται. πάντες δε ὅσοι Θεον καταλαβέσθαι ἔσπευσαν, τὴν ἑαυτῶν σκιὰν κατεδίωξαν· καὶ ὅσοι τὶ περὶ οὐσίας Θεοῦ ἐιπεῖν ἠβουλήθησαν τὴν ἄβυσσον μετρῆσαι τῇ ἑαυτῶν δρακὶ ἔσπευσαν· καὶ ὅσοι βαθύναι ενόμισαν, εις πονηρὰς ἱιρέσεις ἐτράπησαν. ὁ γὰρ Πατηρ καὶ Θέος, οὐχ ὡς ἐγὼ ὁ κτιστος ὑπάρχει Πάτης, γεννήσας ὡς ἐγω κτιστον ̔Χιον· οὐδὲ ὁ ̔Υιος (ὡς πᾶς σαρκικος ̔Υιος γενόμενος·) ουδὲ το Πνεύμα το άγιον, ὡς το τοῦ ἀνθρώπου πνεῦμα περίγραπτον, ἀλλ ̓ ἄῤῥητον καὶ ἀνέκφραστον το τῆς ἁγίας Τρίαδος υπάρχει μυστήριον. καὶ μη ἔιπης, πῶς; ὑπὲρ γὰρ τὸ πῶς ἐστι (τοῦτο,) μηδὲ ἔιπης, ποίῳ τρόπῳ ; ὑπὲρ γὰρ τροπον ὁ θεῖος τροπος· μηδὲ ἔιπης, ποίῳ λόγῳ ; ὑπὲρ γὰρ λόγον ὁ θεῖος λόγος· ἀλλὰ πίςευε εις Πατέρα, μη ἐρευνήσης δὲ το πράγμα, προσκύνει τον ̔Υιον μη πολυπραγμονῶν την αυτου γέννησιν· ανάμνει το Πνεύμα το άγιον, μη ἐκζητῶν τὸ τῆς ἁγίας
behold a splendid manifestation of the power of the Holy and consubstantial Trinity. The Father testifying from above, the Son baptized beneath, the All Holy Spirit in the form of a dove descending. To Him, with the Almighty Father, and his only begotten Son Jesus Christ our Lord, be glory, and dominion, now and always, and for ever and ever, Amen.'
There is a very long and elaborate Treatise, put into the form of a dialogue between an Arian and Athanasius, in the same volume, through the whole of which the appeal is made constantly to the Scriptures, and to nothing else. See for a few specimens, the 8th Book, (p. 575.) containing a contrast between the Arian and the Catholic confession.
For example. (1) 'The Arians say, that the Son of God was not in heaven with the Father, during the time that he conversed with men. I believe that God, the Son of God, according to the power of his Deity, was in heaven and on earth during his incarnation, and that he fills all things without ceasing, for he himself said to Nicodemus in the Gospel, 'No one hath ascended into heaven but he who came down from heaven, even the Son of Man who is in heaven.'
Τριάδος μυστήριον. δεῦρο ἐν Ιορδάνη, και όρα διὰ πραγμάτων τηλαυγῶς τῆς ἁγίας καὶ ὁμουσιου Τριάδος την δύναμιν. Πατέρα μὲν ἄνωθεν μαρτυρουντα· ̔Χιον δὲ κάτωθεν βαπτιζόμενον· Πνεύμα δὲ πανάγιον ἐν ἔιδει περιστερᾶς κατερχόμενον. ̓αυτῳ ἡ δόξα, και το κράτος, και ἡ προσκύνησης, (συν τα Πατρι τῳ παντοκράτορι, και τῳ μονογενῇ αυτου ̔Υιῶ, τῷ Κυρίῳ ὁμων Ιησου Χριζῳ νυν και αει, και εις τοὺς αιώνας των αιώνων. Αμήν.
(1) Ariani dicunt, Dei filium non fuisse in coelis apud patrem, tem. pore quo inter homines versaretur. Ego credo Deum Dei filium secun, dum suae potentiam Deitatis in coelo, et in terra tuisse incarnationis suae tempore, et totum replere, nec unquam defuisse, ipso ad Nicodemum in Evangelio dicente: Nemo ascendit in coelum, nisi qui descendit de coelo, filius hominis qui est in coelo,'
(m) 'The Arians say that the Son of God was not, before he was born, and that he was made from nonexistence. I believe that there is one substance of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Ghost. I confess that the Son, who is the wisdom of the Father, was always in him, and was begotten of him, because there never was a time, in which the Father was without his Word and Wisdom, nor was the Son ever without the Father; as the Evangelist saith, and often repeats, that in the beginning was the Word, he was always, and he was God, and he was with God,' &c.
(n) The Arians say that the persons of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost are three diverse and unequal substances. I do not believe that the persons of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost are diverse and unequal substances, but I confess that they are three persons, perfect, equal, and eternal, of one substance, one power, one virtue, and majesty. -For in the Gospel, John relates not that the Jews, but that the Son himself made himself equal with the Father. And again, after he had premised the unity of his and his Father's power,
(m) Ariani dicunt, quod filius Dei erat, quando non erat, et antequam nasceretur non erat, et quod ex nullis extantibus factus est. Ego credo unam substantiam Patris, et Filii, et Spiritus Sancti: propterea filium, qui est sapientia Patris, in eo semper fuisse, et ex ipso genitum confiteor, quia nunquam fuit tempus, quo Pater sine suo verbo et sapientia fuisse a fidelibus credatur: nec Filius sine suo aliquando extitit Patre, Evangelista dicente, et saepius repetente: Quod in principio erat verbum, et
semper erat, et Deus erat, et apud Deum erat,' &c.
(n) Ariani dicunt, tres diversas substantias, ac dispares personas Patris, et Filii, et sancti Spiritus. Ego non diversas substantias ac dispares personas Patris, et Filii, et Spiritus Sanctus credo, sed tres personas perfectas æquales, et æternas, unius substantiæ, unius potentiae, unius virtutis ac majestatis confiteor :- -In Evangelio quippe Joannes, non quia Judaei loquerentur, sed quia ipse se Filius aequalem faciebat Deo Patri, &c.— -Eodem iterum dicente, cum jam praemisisset unam eandemque suam Patrisque potentiam, postea