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Monday, August 8, 2011

St. Cyril’s Scriptural Christology

A Paper by David B

The Link:

"The treatment of communicatio idiomatum is nowhere more overt in St. Cyril’s writing than when he speaks about the Eucharist, for he makes clear that an exchange of properties takes place between natures based on their common point of union, namely, that they are both proper to the one, divine Son and Word of God. Thus we can see that statements like “the radiance of the divine and ineffable glory of God the Father shines “in the face of Jesus Christ”[36] can be made without fear, for ““the Word who is God can introduce the life-giving power and energy of his own self into his very own flesh,”[37] though without thinking “that the divine nature of the Word had changed into something which formerly it was not…or that the flesh was changed by some kind of transformation into the nature of the Word himself.”[38] The bread which is his flesh, then, is “living bread,” the flesh of life broken on the cross, and no mere man’s flesh, unable to communicate life as can the “holy and life-giving” flesh of the Word, “full of divine energy.”[39] Thus, as Keating concludes, “Cyril’s theology of the Eucharist appears to be quite straightforward: by eating of the consecrated bread, we in fact partake of the flesh of Christ, and so receive into ourselves the life that is in Christ through the medium of his very flesh, flesh which has become life-giving by virtue of the ineffable union of the Word to this flesh.”[40] It is evident, then, that the One who offers this flesh on the cross must be the divine Son and Word of God Himself; a mere taking of a man alongside the Word would not allow for a communication of the life of God through the sacrificed, vivified, and energized flesh given to us in the Eucharist."

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