born of Mary. These are the first of two classes. Further, as Nestorius says, the Bible connects the suffering and death of Christ not with the Godhead, but rather with 'Christ or the Son or the Kyrios'. Christ, as subject of a statement (onoma prokeimenon), signifies both, 'God and human being', and thus the two natures. The same is true for the titles 'Son' and 'Kyrios'. These can serve as the subject of all three classes of statements, for, as Nestorius writes to Cyril, they denote 'something common' (koina tina).

Christ is 'the invisible and the visible', as Nestorius often says in his sermons. Christ is 'the hidden (God) and he who appears visibly' for all human beings; yet in his invisible reality, as Theodore of Mopsuestia also stresses, he is only recognised by believers, not by Jews, the devil, etc. Because of the hidden, Nestorius worships the visible. For the latter is inseparably connected with God and reveals God. Cyril was to cite these propositions in his third letter because for him they showed that Nestorius taught in fact two Christs. For, according to Cyril, Nestorius denied a union that justifies that 'the one Christ Jesus, the only-begotten Son' (John 1.14,18) - that is, for Cyril, the Logos - 'is adored together with his flesh'.

Cyril says this without acknowledging, or perhaps even considering, that Nestorius stated in the immediate context: 'I distinguish the natures; however, I worship the One.' By this Nestorius meant 'the one prosopon of worship', of which Theodore of Mopsuestia spoke, even if Nestorius did not use the term prosopon in this sense in his homilies. Nestorius uses prosopon only as a characterisation of the concrete nature, as when he says that Christ has 'assumed the prosopon of the nature'.

Cyril's 'union according to the hypostasis' versus prosopon

In Nestorius' terminology, the concept of nature as prosopon is no longer clearly associated with its original exegetical context.19 Cyril, in his second letter to Nestorius, goes on the attack by employing the expression 'union according to the hypostasis', which he had already introduced in his aggressive tract Contra Nestorium. He uses it now in this letter for the first and last time consistently in order to interpret the incarnation as appropriation of the flesh. On the basis of this union, it is the Logos who is worshipped, but not Christ 'as human being together with the Logos'. For him appropriation means that 'the Logos became flesh' (John 1.14) and 'did not unite the prosopon of a human being with him'. Therefore he states that a 'union ofprosopa' in Christ is ruled out by 'the union

0 0

Post a comment