Part 4
Chapter 2—Of Redemption

Section 22—Cyrillus Hierosolymitanus. A.D. 370.

Cyrill of Jerusalem, though a little earlier than some of the former, since he died A.D. 386, according to Monsieur Daille,[1] is next cited by him as a patron of general redemption, and who indeed does say,[2] that Christ took upon him the sins of the world, cleanses the whole world from sin, has redeemed the whole world of men; and that the Father having constituted him the Savior of the whole world, he came for the salvation of all.But these passages will be easily accounted for, when it is observed, that by the world,he means, the world of believers. "You have," says he,[3] "the twelve apostles witnesses of the cross, and the habitable earth, kai tou kosmon twn eiv ton stauromenon pisteuontwn anqrwpwn, and the world of men that believe in him that was crucified." And these, and these only, will be saved by him; for he it is, as he elsewhere says,[4] "that saves, touv pisteuontav, ‘those that believe' by the word of the cross." Nor need it seem strange that Cyrill should say, that Jesus took upon him touv oikoumenikav amartiav,"the sins of the world," since he talks[5] "of pashv thv oikumenikhv ekklhsiav, of the church of the whole world." Besides, one reason of his using such general expressions, as "the world, the whole world," etc., may be on the account of the extent of Christ's sufferings and death to Jews and Gentiles. "He came," says he,[6] "who has mercy on them, and was crucified and rose again, giving his own precious blood uper Ioudaiwn te kai eqnwn, both for Jews and Gentiles." Cyrill, indeed, speaks of many ways of eternal life opened for all, which scarce any will agree to; and of human nature being capable of salvation, which none will deny. As for the words of Diodorus Tarsensis next mentioned,[7] declaring "that the Lord being born, showed himself to the Persians before other nations, that grace and salvation might be given by him to those of the magicians and soothsayers that would;" they are so far from bearing a testimony in behalf of universal redemption, that they plainly limit the grace and salvation of Christ toiv eqelousin, "to them that are willing;"which none are, but such who are made so by the energy and power of special grace.


[1] Apolog. p. 795.

[2] Cyrill. Catech. 3, s. 9, p. 41; et 10, s. 2, p. 124; et 13, s. 1, p. 167.

[3] Ibid. 13, s. 19, p. 186.

[4] Catech. 17, s. 5, p. 245.

[5] Ibid. 6, s. 1, p. 78.

[6] Ibid. 14, s. 10, p. 198.

[7] Apolog. p. 796.