As Iron Sharpens Iron

An ongoing and online discussion between: an Orthodox informed Ecumaniac without a denominational home, an ordained Baptist youth pastor with an open mind, a Calvinist worship leader/seminarian with a staggering vocabulary and ability to make a point, and a cradle Catholic with a love/hate relationship to Rome.

Thursday, December 22, 2005

The Reason for the Season

The care of the Creator for his creatures is well known to us, and it explains why the Redeemer became incarnate. It was consistent with his love not to leave the human race to go to perdition, from the moment he had constructed the universe and given existence to non-existent beings. The Lord of the world did not consider it right to allow human beings, for love of whom everything had been made, to be besieged by sin and to be sold like slaves to death.

For this reason he assumed human form, hid his invisible nature under visible guise, and kept the visible nature free from the stain of sin. Undoubtedly, it would have been easy for him to save the human race without assuming the garment of the flesh. He could have overthrown the power of death by a simple act of will. He could have made the father of that power, sin, disappear by exiling it from earth in such a way that no trace of it would remain on the earth.

Instead, he chose to demonstrate the holiness of his providential care.

To restore salvation to human beings he did not employ as his servants the angels and archangels, nor cause a piercing voice to resound from heaven. He preferred to build for himself a chamber in the womb of the Virgin and from there to come among us.

For this reason we think of him as man and adore him as God. Begotten of the father from before the beginning of time, he took of the Virgin a visible body. He is the being who is both new and pre-existent.

Theodoret of Cyrrus, The Cure of Pagan Diseases 5th c.

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