The
CAUSE OF GOD AND TRUTH.

Part 4
Chapter 2—Of Redemption

Section 23—Gregorius Nazianenus. A.D. 370.


The passages cited out of Gregory of Nazianzum, by M. Daille,[1] in favor of general redemption, must be acknowledged to be the most pertinent to his purpose of any produced by him, for Gregory not only says, that Christ took away the sin of the whole world;that his sacrifice was the expiation of the whole world;and that a few drops of his blood restored the whole world;but also, that through his sufferings all that partake of Adam, were deceived by the serpent, and died through his sin, without exception,are restored; and that his sacrifice was not for a small part of the world, nor for a little while, but always continues to be an expiation of the whole world;and that he died for the worst of men, for heretics, yea, for Julian the apostate; nay he affirms that Julian had obtained salvation by him; his words are these,[2] "The first Nebuchadnezzar (meaning Julian) afflicted us, who after Christ was mad against Christ, and therefore he hated Christ, oti tij autou seswstw, because he had been saved by him;" though it may be reasonably thought that he should mean no more than that Julian had enjoyed some temporal mercies, some temporal deliverance and salvation by Christ. And in the same way may his other general expressions be understood; and his sense be, that the whole world, and all men in it, yea, the worst of men, receive some temporal advantages, through the sufferings, sacrifice, and death of Christ; for it is certain, that he sometimes represents a special particular set of men as such for whom Christ died. In one place,[3] he brings in the people of God to distress complaining after this manner, "O God, why hast thou cast off for ever? thy anger is stirred up against the sheep of thy pasture; remember thy congregation which thou hast possessed from the beginning, hn peripoihsw toiv tou monogenouv Logou sou paqesin,‘which thou hast purchased by the sufferings of thine only begotten Word,' to which thou hast vouchsafed thy great covenant, and hast drawn to heaven by a new mystery and the earnest of the Spirit." And in another place, addressing the priests, he says,[4] "O ye priests, put on righteousness, or to speak more properly, let us put it on; let us not scatter and destroy the sheep of the pasture, uper wn eqhke thn yuchn o poimhn o kalov, ‘for whom the good Shepherd laid down his life; who knows his own, and is known by his own, calls them by name, leads them in, and brings them from unbelief to faith, and from this life to a future rest." And in an epistle to Basil he has these words,[5] "We speak concerning the church upper hn Cristov apeqanen, ‘for whom Christ died;' and concerning him that brings and presents the same to God."


ENDNOTES:

[1] Apolog. p. 796-798.

[2] Greg. Nazianz. Orat. 32, p. 512, tom. 1.

[3] Ibid. 4, adv. Julian. p. 124.

[4] Ibid. 9, p. 154.

[5] Ibid. E. p. 22, p. 785.