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CPG 3647
Actual Author or Source Apollinaris
Source of Attribution to Julius I Apollinarian forgery
Text Greek: Lietzmann, Apollinaris von Laodicea und seine Schule: Texte und Untersuchungen, 194-199 (sections 3-7)
Syriac: Flemming and Lietzmann, Apollinaristische Schriften Syrisch, 24-32.
Latin: ACO 2.2.1
 Other Translations  German: Lietzmann, Apollinaris von Laodicea und seine Schule: Texte und Untersuchungen, 194-199
Source of Information Thompson, Correspondence of Julius I, xxxv-xxxviii, 177-178

1. Our Lord Christ, the only Son of God, has made us worthy of great mysteries: great things which no man knows how to tell how they are, mysteries which only faith can grasp. So great were they that we were not worthy of them, but it was worthy of him to give them. For if you look at our lack of faith, we would not only not be worthy of the gift of glorious mysteries, but we would even be due punishment and pain. But because he is good, and the Son of goodness, he has not only freed us from the punishment but has also given us eternal life, which is much more praiseworthy and glorious than this first one, and he has caused us to enter into another world and created us to be another creation.

2. “Now whoever is in Christ is a new creation” (2 Cor 5:17). What is the new creation if he has not led us up to heaven? In this first life and creation we were not found to be believers, but he has laid into our hands greater things than these. We were not able to guard our souls in front of one single tree. And see! He gave us eternal delight. In paradise we did not control ourselves, and he opened heaven to us and gave us the kingdom of heaven. And what is greater than all this, he came to us, God to men, the Lord to his servants, the rich to the poor, the living and the life-giver to the house of the dead, to those who their entire lives were subjected to the slavery of death. And not only this, but he also gave us his body and blood.

3. We must not despise the Lordly and salvific flesh of our Lord Jesus Christ as being consubstantial by pretense, but we also must not say that the body of our Lord Jesus Christ is from heaven. For neither we nor our council nor anyone who has human reason says or thinks the body is consubstantial by itself. Rather, we say that the flesh of our Lord Jesus Christ is not from heaven, but we confess that God the Word became incarnate from the holy Virgin Mary and we do not divide him from his flesh. There is, however, one person, one hypostasis, one nature of God the Word who became flesh, wholly man, wholly God, and not two persons who became one.

4. Therefore, if we believe that our Lord Jesus Christ has come according to the likeness of man from this virgin pregnancy, according to which the Virgin is shown also to be the God-bearer (and this is the mystery of our salvation—that the Word of God became incarnate!), he is inseparable and indivisible from his flesh. And if we really confess that the Word of God truly became flesh, [according to the union with God the Word] the flesh of him, whose is flesh it also is, shares in the name which is the Word’s by nature: “consubstantial with the Father. But if the flesh does not share in it, it would be entirely alienated, and then also salvation from the incarnation does not follow after the believers since it is outside of the divine triad,

5. for there is nothing worshipped or salvific outside of the divine triad. Rather, the incarnation is shown by this to be something superfluous and ill-suited. Accordingly also the words of the divine writers will be found to be a lie, words such as, “The Word became flesh” (Jn 1:14), and “Today a Savior, Christ the Lord, is born in the city of David” (Lk 2:11). And it is a lie that he is both “Almighty God” and a “child” (Is 9:6) and everything of the like. But also the Virgin will no longer be believed to be the God-bearer, the very kind of thing which is lawless and godless and foreign to every godly soul. For every hope of Christians will be overturned by this and Christianity itself will be considered as nothing. For even the great and precious gift of Christians, the complete washing in the death of Christ, will be considered not as something divine but as something human if the incarnation of our Lord Jesus Christ is not reckoned to the divine triad.

6. But we must say that your atrocity shall be directed against you and your wickedness shall bring you to silence, and we must confess that Christ Jesus our Lord, to whom the Virgin gave birth, is God’s true Son before eternity, consubstantial with the Father, God from God, the Savior and Redeemer, living and life-giving, one from one, and, although one, also from two (I mean from deity and humanity). We the holy church offer deserved worship to this one, and his flesh is not separated from his deity in the worship. For it is impossible to divide the things of worship without dividing the divine life. For whoever does not worship his flesh does not worship him. [Therefore certainly because of the union of the Word with the souled and rational flesh we offer, because it is to one Son, just one worship] as the Evangelist preaching one life of the Word and the flesh says “The Word became flesh” (Jn 1:14) Therefore certainly if the Word became flesh, someone who worships the Word worships the flesh and someone who worships the flesh worships the deity, and the Apostles who worshipped Christ Jesus by worshipping him in the body worshipped God the Word. And even the angels served him, approaching the body as their own Lord. And the Virgin bearing his flesh from its beginning gave birth to God the Word and was the God-bearer. And the Jews who crucified his body crucified God the Word. There is no division of the Word and his flesh brought forth at all in the divine Scriptures, but there is one nature, one hypostasis, one activity, one person, the same one wholly God and wholly man.

7. For deity is his essence according to what is unseen, but flesh is his essence according to what is seen. Therefore the incarnation of our Lord Jesus Christ is not foreign to or divided from the divine triad. For even Baptism for the forgiveness of sins and resurrection to the flesh was said to have been given with an enumeration of the triad. This is a work of deity and not of a created nature. For this body and God, whose body it is, are one, without the flesh being turned bodiless but with it having both its own quality which is from us according to the birth from a virgin and also that which is beyond us according to the [mixture or] union of God the Word.

8. So we must believe and not doubt, my beloved, in the coming of God the Word, and not change it. He, that is, who confesses the coming of God with his mouth but means in his thoughts that he was a man like us and he was of a woman, and says that the Son of God was not born of a woman, is against the believers and is counted among the unbelievers. But for us it seems appropriate to guard what concerns his deity according to the tradition of our holy fathers. And we take no consideration of human arguments for we have not become believers out of arguments but through the divine words which came to us through the testimony imparted by the blessed (holy) Apostles, who have looked on the glory of our Lord, which was more sublime than the human nature, and also through the testimony which they heard from heaven (2 Pet 1:16-18) and proclaimed to the world, that God became incarnate, and that the Word became flesh, and that the life-giving spirit of our Lord Jesus Christ was without father in his birth on earth because he was God who climbed down from heaven and not a man who sprouted forth from human seed. He was called the Son of Man but as God he showed his divine glory, and through the blood of his hypostasis he redeemed the entire creation and he rules over things in heaven and over things on earth. And he has a throne over heaven and he is worshipped by the angels and praised before the Holy Spirit.

9. But if someone errs and thinks or teaches differently from that which the Prophets and Apostles and our holy fathers who were assembled in the city of Nicaea from the whole world, have taught, his danger is great, for [Jesus] has said, “Blessed is he who does not fall away on account of me” (Mt 11:6). But he falls away because of the body, and because of the suffering he changes our Saviorand thinks of him as a man instead of as God. For whoever calls the one who was born of Mary a man and calls the one who was crucified a man makes him to be a man instead of God. And in a man you cannot find the life which is given by God. For the one who was born of the woman was the life-giver and through his birth he gave life to woman, because she had given to the world the fruits of death. And through the fact that he was a man he has brought man near to the fellowship of his life. And through his death he dissolved the power of death and invited us to life through the resurrection of the dead. Therefore, if life and redemption is from God, so also is freeing the world is not from someone else. But if the one who was born and crucified gives life and redemption, then it is not a man whom Mary bore and it is not a man whom the Jews crucified but he who became flesh and became man for the sake of man’s redemption. To his Father and to him and to the Holy Spirit be praise and thanks and grandeur now and at every time and in the eternity of eternities. The end.

Translated by AMJ

Last updated: 8-31-2012

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