Search related sites

Friday, May 27, 2011

Note (86.) to "History of the 'Christian' Trinity - HIST"

86. “’All three,’ [Tertullian] says, ‘are one (unus).’ But Tertullian felt that it must be possible to answer the question ‘Three what?’ or even ‘One what?’ He therefore proposed to say that God is ‘one substance [or “nature” in 85] consisting in three persons.’ The precise meaning of the Latin words substantia and persona is not easy to determine in Tertullian’s usage.[15] [‘In Tertullian substantia could be used in the sense of character or nature.’ - p. 90.] He was a well educated orator rather than a meticulous philosopher, and it is probably a mistake to try to interpret his terminology within a rigorous Aristotelian framework. He had been influenced by Stoicism with its doctrine that the immaterial is simply the non-existent, and was prepared to explain that God in all three ‘Persons’ is ‘spirit’, which he seems to have interpreted as an invisible and intangible but not ultimately immaterial vital force.” - p. 89, The Early Church, Prof. Henry Chadwick, 1986 ed. Dorset Press, New York. (Henry Chadwick was Regius Professor of Divinity at Oxford from 1959-1969. He is now Regius Professor of Divinity and a Fellow of Magdalene College, Cambridge.)

Entire Study File

Trinity Index

No comments: