April 28, 2013

Apostolic Father Ignatius on the Deity of Christ

Tradition says that Ignatius served as the third bishop of Antioch from 67 to 108. His authentic letters help to illuminate views of Jesus Christ in the early second century. Despite various criticisms that say belief in the uncreated deity of Christ was a later invention, quotes from Ignatius indicate otherwise. Below are quotes of Ignatius translated by J.B. Lightfoot:

Await Him that is above every season, the Eternal, the Invisible, who became visible for our sake, the Impalpable, the Impassible, who suffered for our sake, who endured in all ways for our sake. (To Polycarp 3:2)
I bid you farewell always in our God Jesus Christ, in whom abide ye in the unity and supervision of God. (To Polycarp 8:3, italics added)
I give glory to Jesus Christ the God who bestowed such wisdom upon you. (To the Smyrnaeans 1:1, italics added)
Ignatius, who is also Theophorus, unto her that hath found mercy in the bountifulness of the Father Most High and of Jesus Christ His only Son; to the church that is beloved and enlightened through the will of Him who willed all things that are, by faith and love towards Jesus Christ our God...abundant greeting in Jesus Christ our God in blamelessness. (To the Romans 0:0, italics added)
For our God Jesus Christ, being in the Father, is the more plainly visible. (To the Romans 3:3, italics added)
By the will of the Father and of Jesus Christ our God. (To the Ephesians 0:0, italics added)
There is one only physician, of flesh and of spirit, generate and ingenerate, God in man, true Life in death, Son of Mary and Son of God, first passible and then impassible, Jesus Christ our Lord. (To the Ephesians 7:2)

Copyright © 2013 James Edward Goetz