GOD'S IMPASSIBILITY IN THEODORET

Currently reading Theodoret of Cyrus and a thesis:
GOD'S IMPASSIBILITY IN THEODORET OF CYRUS’ COMMENTARIES ON THE PAULINE LETTERS
Juha Karhulahti 2020

Might have something to say about this later.

On Pages 73-74 we read:

3. THEODORET’S DOCTRINE OF TRINITARIAN UNITY
3.1. God the Eternal Father

{ ... }
In the fourth chapter of De Trinitate, Theodoret interprets how Biblical naming supports the view of Trinitarian oneness in three πρόσωπα. The interpretation is evident in his arguments on the principle of God’s immutability. He asserts that the target of faith is only one God the Father, who eternally bears the properties “unbegun and unbegotten”. He is eternally what the Bible says him to be, the existent Father. It was not possible for him to become the Father after any moment, for there had not been a time when he was not the Father. According to the Bible, He had been the Father from the very beginning. He was neither the Son first nor did he become the Father afterwards, as would happen in corporeal sequence. Whatever he is called in the Bible, that he now and will be eternally. He is both Father and iscalled Father.173 This God the Father has the divine nature.174 Following Theodore of Mopsuestia, Theodoret also sees divine nature (φύσις) as an unchangeable platonic idea, which takes its form in one particular individual in the Trinity.

The highlighted text opens a door to exploring the philosophical framework of Theodore of Mopsuestia and Theodoret. If we venture to pass through that door what would we find?
 
Divine Suffering is addressed by Richard Bauckham. talking to Ben Worthington, Bauckham quotes Karl Barth about God's freedom to suffer. Worthington acknowledges that this was a problem for the Greek fathers.

Minute 7:20ff
 
Divine Suffering is addressed by Richard Bauckham. talking to Ben Worthington, Bauckham quotes Karl Barth about God's freedom to suffer. Worthington acknowledges that this was a problem for the Greek fathers.

Minute 7:20ff
There is something to be explored in Worthington's comment about the Greek fathers. Nick Norelli in his review of Bauckham's Jesus and the God of Israel... [1] explores what is left unspoken in the short pause after Worthington's comment. Bauckham's suggestion that the Greek Fathers during the Christological controversies were primarily concerned with ontology is exposed to close examination in Norelli's review.

[1] Bauckham, Richard. Jesus and the God of Israel: God Crucified and Other Studieson the New Testament’s Christology of Divine Identity, Grand Rapids, MI:Eerdmans, 2008
 
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Does he also believe in the Sons Eternality in the same way as the Fathers ?

Πιστεύομεν εἰς ἕνα Υἱὸν συναΐδιον τῷ γεννήσαντι, οὐκ ἀρχὴν τοῦ εἶναι λαβόντα, ἀλλ' ἀεὶ ὄντα, καὶ σὺν Πατρὶ ὄντα· ἀφ' οὗ γὰρ Πατὴρ, ἀεὶ δὲ Πατὴρ, ἐξ ἐκείνου Υἱός· ἀχωρίστως γὰρ ἔχει ταῦτα πρὸς ἄλληλα, τά τε ὀνόματα, καὶ τὰ πράγματα· εἰ οὐκ ἀεὶ δὲ ὁ Υἱὸς, ἀλλ' ἦν ὅτε οὐκ ἦν, οὐδὲ ἀεὶ ὁ Πατήρ· ἀφ' οὗ γὰρ ἐγέννησε, τοῦτο ἔχει τὸ ὄνομα· εἰ δὲ ἀεὶ ὁ Θεὸς καὶ Πατὴρ (βλάσφημον γὰρ τῷ ὄντι, ὑπὸ χρόνους ποιῆσαι τὸν τῶν χρόνων ποιητὴν, καὶ χρονικοῦ διαστήματος ἀποφῆναι δευτέραν τὴν ἄχρονον καὶ ὑπὲρ χρόνον γέννησιν), ἀεὶ ὁ Υἱὸς, ἐκ τοῦ Πατρὸς μὲν ἀῤῥήτως γεννηθεὶς, μετὰ τοῦ Πατρὸς δὲ ἀεὶ ὢν, καὶ σὺν τῷ Πατρὶ γνωριζόμενος.

Theodoret of Cyrus The Holy Trinity, MPG p1152, lines 12-25



We believe in one Son, co-eternal with the Begetter whose existence had no beginning, but is eternally; moreover, He is together with the Father. Thus, since ever the Father exists – yet He is eternally Father – the Son from Him. Therefore, they exist inseparably from each other according to their names as well as to their realities. For if the Son is not eternal, but there was when He was not, then neither the Father can be eternal, because He bears the name only since He has begotten. But if God the Father is eternal, since it would be a blasphemy indeed to subordinate to time the Existent One the Creator of time, and according to the time intervals to pronounce second the begetting which is timeless and beyond time, then the Son is eternal also, since He was born ineffably of the Father, being eternal together with the Father, and perceived with Him.


Translation was adapted from István Pásztori-Kupán 2007 (the adaption was done by removing content that was intended to help the reader. I tried to not included anything that didn't represent something in the Greek text. This was performed in hast so it is probably far from perfect.)

István Pásztori-Kupán
Theodoret of Cyrus’s Double Treatise
On the Trinity and On the Incarnation:
The Antiochene Pathway to Chalcedon
Published by
The Transylvanian District of the Reformed Church in Romania
Kolozsvár/Cluj 2007, page 62
 
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Our Lord's God

Well-known member
Currently reading Theodoret of Cyrus and a thesis:
GOD'S IMPASSIBILITY IN THEODORET OF CYRUS’ COMMENTARIES ON THE PAULINE LETTERS
Juha Karhulahti 2020

Might have something to say about this later.

IRENAEUS ca. 180 - the heretics say the Word was impassible

For if anyone carefully examines the systems of them all (Gnostic heretics), he will find that the Word of God is brought in by all of them as not having become incarnate (sine carne) and impassible, as is also the Christ from above. III, 11, 3

Irenaeus made several other comments about this heresy (i.e. the Word is, and remained, impassible).

CHALCEDON 451 C.E. - we confess the Word was impassible

For we all confess in addition to this, that the Word of God is impassible
 
IRENAEUS ca. 180 - the heretics say the Word was impassible

For if anyone carefully examines the systems of them all (Gnostic heretics), he will find that the Word of God is brought in by all of them as not having become incarnate (sine carne) and impassible, as is also the Christ from above. III, 11, 3

Irenaeus made several other comments about this heresy (i.e. the Word is, and remained, impassible).

CHALCEDON 451 C.E. - we confess the Word was impassible

For we all confess in addition to this, that the Word of God is impassible

There is something spooky about the CARM forum. I was revisiting the topic of the divinity of the Holy spirit in Theodoret of Cyrus and looking at a passage in his work on the Trinity this morning while having my daily cup of coffee. I hadn't to my knowledge posted anything but I had revisited and started gathering material for a post. It's been a long time since I posted this and many distractions have intervened so that I now come to it as if it was a new topic. I am wondering if merely reading my month old post made it more visible. I don't understand how these things work. CARM is completely unlike any of the academic forums I used to participate in which are now more or less dead.
 

Our Lord's God

Well-known member
There is something spooky about the CARM forum. I was revisiting the topic of the divinity of the Holy spirit in Theodoret of Cyrus and looking at a passage in his work on the Trinity this morning while having my daily cup of coffee. I hadn't to my knowledge posted anything but I had revisited and started gathering material for a post. It's been a long time since I posted this and many distractions have intervened so that I now come to it as if it was a new topic. I am wondering if merely reading my month old post made it more visible. I don't understand how these things work. CARM is completely unlike any of the academic forums I used to participate in which are now more or less dead.

How about the fact that Irenaeus said only heretics claimed the Word was impassible?

... and 270 years later, the Council of Chalcedon members are declaring the Word was impassible.
 
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