CPG 3732
Author Valentine
Greek Text Lietzmann, Apollinaris von Laodicea und seine Schule: Texte und Untersuchungen, 287-291.

The Christian Valentine wrote this against the things evilly and wickedly taught by Timothy and those with him, including their most wicked teacher Polemon:
1. Since Timothy, who has become the first disciple of Polemon, out of great foolishness raised himself up against the church of Christ and teaches against the truth the wickedness of his teacher Polemon, mindlessly instructing his companion Kataphronius, as he himself writes to those who agree with him, Paregorius, Uranius, Diodorus, and Iobius, saying this: “Although the flesh of the Lord by the union with God the Word is referred to as God and confessed to be consubstantial with God, by nature it remains human and consubstantial with us.” And again from Kataphronius, the person instructed by him, he says this: “For by the union the same one ought to be confessed to be the Word of God and as the Word be referred to as God and as the Word be worshipped and as the Word be believed to be consubstantial with God.”
2. And still more godless than this, Timothy, is that you make the flesh which our Lord Jesus bore from the holy Virgin invisible, since you say, “As the Word of God, the flesh is consubstantial. Through it we gain salvation.” We too believe that the flesh of the Lord, which he took on from a virgin, through which also mediation is always guarded for us into perpetuity by the life-giving Word of God, is worshipped with and called God with and glorified with the Word of God. And in this way our Lord Jesus Christ, who is from flesh and the Word, is shown to be one person. For by the union with God the Word, not by nature, is the flesh called God. Therefore in this union it also has permanence, as the Lord himself says, “The spirit is what makes the flesh alive” (Jn 6:63). For surely the body cannot also become consubstantial to the bodiless God because of the union. Senselessly and wickedly those around Timothy and Polemon and those who artfully devise very changing things with them say this very thing, wishing to add to the body the praise of impossible bodilessness. But it is possible to be glorified with the glory of the bodiless God and it is proper for the deity which bears it. And in this way it is worshipped by all creation as the Demiurge and the true Son of God bearing flesh, and not a man bearing God.
3. What, then, is this uneducatedness, or rather, unbelief of yours, Timothy, you and those with you and your teacher Polemon? You say that because of the union the body is self-consubstantial and not self-consubstantial to the deity, saying that it is self-unchanged and self-changed. Since you say, “As the Word of God, the flesh is consubstantial.” And as you oppose yourselves you anathematize yourselves. And just as one who is drunk and intoxicated did not know what he was doing or what he was saying, so also you do not know “the things you are saying or about which you speak so confidently” (1 Tm 1:7), for this wicked teaching which was very often taught by you convicts you.
4. So learn, faithless ones, that there is no union of consubstantial entities. If it is of consubstantial parties, it is not a union. For nothing is united or joined to itself, but something which is united or joined is so to something else, which is the Word of God joining himself to flesh. And this is what is said by the divine evangelist, “The Word became flesh and dwelt among us” (Jn 1:14), that the Word was united to a souled flesh. Then neither do you know this, o faithless ones, that nature and essence are the same thing, especially in the case of God, as God is the unspeakable and bodiless and eternal deity of the reverend Triad. But the body which the Lord bore has not become eternal nor bodiless from the union. Because of this is it not consubstantial to the unspeakable and bodiless essence. The Lord is eternal and prior to the flesh he was consubstantial to the Father and with the flesh the same one is consubstantial to the Father. The flesh was not consubstantial, for a garment and covering and veil of hidden mystery was added and brought above men and through this he appeared to men. For in no other way were we able to become eyewitnesses of God except through a body. And furthermore the Lord also is consubstantial to us according to the flesh, for he was not according to the deity. For neither was the deity from a woman, absolutely not, not is the flesh from above or eternal.
5. So that you may say these things faithlessly and godlessly against the truth with such skillful speech, teaching your own godlessness and being convicted by the truth as evildoers and faithless and liars, you claimed it worthy to know that the union glorified the nature. For he did not make the body consubstantial to God as you show yourself to dare to say, falling away from the truth and insulting the Word’s condescension arising from God’s love for people for a joining to a body which happened for our salvation, saying that it is consubstantial to the impassible deity because of the union. For it is beyond all godlessness, even if you wanted to wisen yourselves a thousand times by misinterpreting and acting recklessly towards the divine scriptures and the books of our thrice-blessed father and teacher Apollinaris, as your writings convict you. You did these things to the delusion and offence of the simplest souls against their own head, since you were opposed to the truth.
6. And you know that it is difficult for you to kick against the goads (Ac 26:14) and you use a great maneuver. Just as also the Jews illegally destroyed the flesh of the Lord, so also you are offended because of the flesh of the Savior. Even if there were many of you, you would be reckoned as nothing because of your godlessness. And if you would have stripped off the meddling of the soul and the faithlessness, you would have understood that God suffered in a body, giving the participation of the body to the participation of the deity. For the body which was taken on from the holy Virgin does not give salvation by itself but by the spirit being together with it, not to reduce the body but to super-glorify the spirit.
7. So stop wanting for the delusion of the simplest souls to write the citations of our thrice-blessed father and teacher Apollinaris for your slanderous citation. For they were set down in a fine and godly way by the holy and God-bearing man. For they are indicative of quality and honor and do not signify nature. The things which indicate “consubstantial,” you cited faithlessly and godlessly. For nature and essence are the same thing, as I said before, and all who confess the true faith know this. But you, moved from the beginning by a devilish jealousy and zeal and envy against the holy bishops and fighting the worst fight against the truth and dividing the church of Christ, turned to this godlessness, such that by saying that the passible body is consubstantial to the impassible deity because of the union, which is impossible and godless, you say that the body is consubstantial to men and consubstantial to God.
8. And how will they “look on the one they pierced” (Zec 12:10; Jn 19:37)? For if the visible body is consubstantial to the invisible deity, as you say, surely both are invisible in keeping with what has been written: “No one has ever seen God” (Jn 1:18) nor can they see him. But our Lord Jesus Christ, according to the deity which he has eternally from the Father, is invisible, but, according to the flesh which he bore from the Virgin, is visible. Therefore let both be placed together upon the one person and let the truth not be missed. Therefore Christ is neither two persons nor is the flesh consubstantial to God, but led by God the Word. So as many of us as are confessors of this unadulterated, true, apostolic faith, let us stop accepting the assertions of those around Timothy and Polemon and the empty talk of those with them contrary to the command of the Apostle. And we have by memory that which was once said by him: “After one warning and then a second one, reject a heretical person, knowing such a one has been perverted and he continues to sin because he is self-condemned” (Tit 3:10).
9. Those around Timothy and Polemon have not only been revealed as heretics but also as sycophants. For our thrice-blessed teacher Apollinaris explicitly called those who say the body of the Lord is consubstantial to the deity blasphemous and mad. And the blessed Athanasius, our most holy bishop, said that those who have dared to say that the body from Mary was consubstantial to the deity were as rising from hell. Timothy and his teacher Polemon and those with him did not perceive much, for, since there is one person of God the Word and the flesh made by God the Word, the worship is to God incarnate, the worship is not to the flesh. For neither is the Word worshipped because of the flesh but the flesh is worshipped together with the Word as its garment and covering, as I said before. Therefore let any who do not align themselves with this canon and this true, apostolic, unadulterated faith be anathema. “So watch out for the dogs, watch out for the evildoers. Watch out for the mutilators. For we are the circumcision, those who serve by the Spirit of God in Christ Jesus and have not trusted in the flesh” (Phil 3:2-3).

Translated by AMJ

Last updated: 6-13-2013

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