湃 恩 Brian
筆者在本文旨在從涅斯多留（Nestorius，AD386-451）的《駁生神者的第一講章（First Sermon Against the Theotokos）》，以及亞歷山大的區利羅（Cyril of Alexandra，AD376-444）的《論基督的合一（On the Unity of Christ）》，論證在第五世紀涅斯多留與區利羅之間的基督論爭論中，區利羅憑著聚焦於救恩的經綸，以及運用「屬性相通」的概念，他成功地達到三個目標：(1)批判了涅斯多留對基督道成肉身的理解；(2)為以「生神者」（God-bearer）稱呼童貞女馬利亞提供了辯護理由；並最後 (3)發展出基督論模型的表達方式，奠定迦克墩會議中基督論界說的公式。
In this essay, I argue according to Nestorius 's Arius’s First Sermon Against the Theotokos and Cyril of Alexandra’s On the Unity, that in the fifth century Christological controversy between Nestorius of Constantinople and Cyril of Alexandria, by focusing on the economy of salvation and using the concept of "communication of attributes", Cyril successfully achieved three goals: (1) criticized Nestorian's understanding on Christ's incarnation; (2) justified the use of the title "Theotokos" (God-bearer) on Virgin Mary; and finally (3) developed the articulation of Christological model, which enables the formulation of the "Definition of Faith" in the Council of Chalcedon.
Nestorians’ Understanding of "Theotokos" and Christ's Incarnation
As trained in Antiochene School, Nestorius employs a Word-human Christology model, which believes that the divine Word lived within the fully human person, Jesus, thus emphasizing the humanity of Christ. After becoming Patriarch of Constantinople in 428, Nestorius argued that the title Theotokos was highly inappropriate for Mary, implying "God has a mother", and that Mary only "gave birth to the human being, the instrument of the Godhead". He thus suggested to call Mary anthropotokos (man-bearer) or Christotokos (Christ-bearer) instead. Moreover, for upholding God's immutability and impassibility, Nestorius maintains that the natures of the incarnate Christ are two in number, and it is Christ's humanity that suffers and is raised up, whereas Christ's divinity is always unaffected by change, even undergoing Incarnation.
Cyril’s critique of the Nestorian perception of the Incarnation
Facing Nestorius's challenges, Cyril is concerned to find an articulation to simultaneously affirm both the divine immutability and impassibility, as well as the divine-human unity of Christ. Following Alexandrian's Word-flesh Christology model, which emphasizes the divinity of Christ, Cyril believes that based on the Johannine verse - “The Word became flesh” (John 1:14), there is a substantial union of divine Word and human flesh in Incarnation. Cyril inherits Alexandrian tradition, emphasizing the indivisible unity of full humanity and full divinity when the Word became flesh.
Different Implications in using "Conjunction" and "Union"
To begin with, Cyril criticized Nestorius's use of the term "conjunction" rather than "union", which is the customary and conventional term that comes down from the fathers. Nestorians worried the term "union" implied "the confusion of things it refers to", however, Cyril shows how the Nestorian concept of the incarnation clearly goes against the Scripture. He pointed out that a "conjunction" with the Logos is not enough to grasp the divinity of the Incarnate Word, and thus divides the Incarnate Son into two "sons" – Son of God and son of man. Cyril goes further to criticize that the Nestorians are pushing the Only Begotten Word out and replacing Him with this creature that they claim had become conjoined to Him, making Him seem merely “the Patron or Promoter of the man by whom we were saved,” and our worship as "nothing more than the idolatry of a man."
Concern to Salvation
Like other Alexandrian fathers, the reason of Cyril's insistence on keeping use of "union" is his concern about the economy of salvation. He argues, in order to die, to raise from death, to overcome sin, so as to restore our sinful humanity into divinity, Christ was required to be born from a woman according to the flesh. Cyril therefore accused the Nestorian explanation of the incarnation of being invalid toward the redemptive salvation of humanity, bankrupting the economy of salvation.
Immutability of God
In response to the Nestorian's view that God's impassibility would be changed or alternated in his union with humanity, Cyril explains that when God became man, he did not change himself into flesh, nor mix nor blend with anything else, but "emptied" himself to take flesh in a form like our own, (Phil 2:4-8) for the sake of restoring our flesh to its beginning. Cyril confirms that even when the Word was born of a woman, he as true God by nature keeps immutable by nature and remains that which he was and is forever.
Concept of Communication of attributes
區利羅承繼使徒保羅和亞他那修的「交換公式」（exchange formula），他認為成肉身的意義乃是「祂親自取了我們的所是，為要使我們得到祂一切的所是。」照著這一思想，他發展出「屬性相通」（Communicatio idiomatum）的概念，即在基督與肉身的聯合中，神聖的屬性能夠「相通」至人性裡（相反亦然）。區利羅運用這概念，來說明基督在肉身裡如何取上神對人性的咒詛和判罰，以致人能夠分享祂的豐富。
Succeeding Apostle Paul's and Athanasius's "exchange formula", Cyril considers the significance of Incarnation is that "he took what was ours to be his very own so that we might have all that was his." In this thought, he developed the concept of "communication of attributes" (Communicatio idiomatum) that the divine attributes can be "communicated" to humanity (and vice versa) in the union of Christ with flesh. With the help of this concept, Cyril illustrates how Christ in his flesh can take up the human curse and punishment so that man might share his riches.
Impassibility of God
Furthermore, Cyril goes on resolving the question of "God's suffering" with the concept of "communication of attributes". He argues that in the person of Christ, "to say that God suffered do no disgrace to him, for he did not suffer in the nature of the godhead, but in his own flesh," because the human attribute – die - "communicates" to God in the one united person of Christ. Hence, as "in the flesh" is where the suffering occurs, we can say "God himself suffered in the flesh" (1 Pet 3:18), even though he retains his impassibility as he is understood as God.
In summary, with the concept of "communication of attributes", Cyril persuasively criticized Nestorian's Christology and developed arguments for his Christological model, which defends the necessity of unity of Christ's person as a result of the incarnation for the sake of salvation. As a result, he claimed that it is justifiable and necessary for us to call Mary "theotokos". Yet, despite the method of "communication of attributes" in describing God's suffering in flesh, Cyril reiterated that this is still a mystery, altogether ineffable, and transcends our thought and speech.
《尼西亞-君士坦丁堡信經》並未能徹底釐清基督的神性和人性之間的關係。在第五世紀涅斯多留與區利羅之間的基督論爭論，可視為東方教會安提阿學派和亞歷山大學派的分岐，以及第四世紀亞波里拿留主義和第一次君士坦丁堡爭議的延續。雖然涅斯多留和區利羅二人，均旨在依據尼西亞正統來建立一套基督論論述公式，但涅斯多留乃是從基督的二重性情的角度來理解基督，而區利羅則是從基督的合一位格來理解。前者的理解容易傾向兩個分裂的位格，而後者則容易變成一性論（Monophysitism）。按筆者認為，區利羅的基督論模型最終對迦克墩會議的決議產生最大的影響，最主要原因是區利羅在緊緊跟隨尼西亞傳統和聖經之下，成功地解決在關於理解基督的神學張力。更重要的是，他關切成肉身所帶來之救恩，因而強調基督位格內不可分割的聯合（indivisible hypostatic union ）。儘管區利羅在他與涅斯多留之間的競爭行為而飽受爭議，但因著他的努力，他大大奠定了迦克墩界說，就是「基督以一個位格、兩種性情存在」，以及「四道牆」（二性不能混合、不能改變、不能分割、不能分開），這保守了教會在正統內理解基督作救主，直至今天。筆者認為這點乃是區利羅對教會最大的貢獻。整個爭論的過程有助我們反思今天我們該如何做神學。
The Nicaea-Constantinople Creed did not clarify thoroughly the relationship between Christ's divine and human natures. The Christological controversy between Nestorius and Cyril in the fifth century can be seen as the dispersed views between Antiochene and Alexandrian Christology in Eastern Church in the continuation of Apollinarianism and the First Council of Constantinople in the fourth century. Though both Nestorius and Cyril have the intention of creating an Christological formula staying inside Nicene orthodoxy, Nestorius viewed Christ from the perspective of Christ's duality (natures), while Cyril takes Christ's unity (person). The former easily turns into two divisive persons while the latter Monophysitism (one-nature). In my opinion, the primary reasons why Cyril's Christological model had been greatly influential on the final conclusion in the Council of Chalcedon are that he successfully resolved the theological tension surrounding our understanding of Christ by closely following the Nicene tradition and Scripture, and most importantly, emphasizing the indivisible hypostatic union under the concern of salvation through the incarnation. Cyril is disputable in his rivalry with Nestorius. Nevertheless, with his effort, he enabled the formulation of the Chalcedonian Creed, which defined "Christ as existing in two natures, divine and human, in one person", and whose "four boundaries" - no confusion, no change, no division, no separation of the two natures - have been preserving the Church in the Orthodox understanding of Christ as Savior from their current time till today. I think that this is Cyril's greatest contribution to the Church, and the whole controversy is valuably worth us reflecting on our theological thinking in doing theology today.
 Nestorius, First Sermon Against the Theotokos, trans.and edited Richard A. Norris, JR. (Philadelphia: Fortress Press, 1980), 124-125.
 Ibid., 125: "Moreover, the incarnate God did not die; he raised up the one in whom he was incarnate…that the [divine] being has become incarnate and that the immutability of the incarnate deity is always maintained after the union."
 Ibid., 126: "The description are different from each other by reason of the mysterious fact that the natures are two in number. Furthermore, it is not only this – that Christ as God is unaffected by change."
 Cyril of Alexandria, On the Unity of Christ, trans. John McGuckin (Chrestwood, New York: St Vladimir’s Seminary Press, 1995), 69: "Nonetheless I think that it is exactly this, nothing else, that the all-wise Joh meat when he wrote: 'The Word became flesh'."
 Ibid., 73: "Then why do they abandon the term 'union,' even though it is the word in customary use among us, and indeed has come down to us from the holy Fathers, preferring to call it a conjunction? The term union in no way causes the confusions of the things it refers to."
 Ibid., 73: "But is this mere conjunction with the Word enough to allow him to grasp the proper glory of God and rise above the bounds of the created order?"
 Ibid., 74: "How wicked they (Nestorians) are, then, when they divide in two the one true and natural Son incarnated and made man, and when they reject the union and call it a conjunction something that any other man could have with God."
 Ibid., 73: "But this is mere conjunction with the Word enough to allow him to grasp the proper glory of God and rise above the bounds of the created order? Does this make him an object of worship even though he is not God?"
 Ibid., 70: "But if this were so, how could the Only Begotten be said to have been the Savior of the World? Would he not rather have been the Patron and Promoter of that man by whom we are saved?"
 Ibid., 71: "…they drag down the most wonderful part of the economy to a disgraceful level and make out our most holy worship as nothing more than the idolatry of a man.
 Ibid., 57: "For it this approach is taken as the truth then the whole sense of the mystery is lost to us; for Christ is not born, neither did he die, neither was he raised… How did God raise him from the dead if he did not die? And how could he die if he had not been born according to the flesh?"
 Ibid., 59: "When they (Nestorians) say that the Word of God did not became flesh, or rather did not undergo birth from a woman according to the flesh, they bankrupt the economy of salvation."
 Ibid., 54-55: "Immutable by nature, he remains that which he was and is for ever,…He did not change himself into flesh; he did not endure any mixture or blending, or anything else of this kind. But he submitted himself to being emptied…but rather animated with a rational soul, and thus he restored flesh to what it was in the beginning… He was born of a woman according to the flesh in a wondrous manner, for he is God by nature, as such invisible and incorporeal, and only in this way, in a form like our own, could he be made manifest to earthly creatures."
 Ibid., 59: "In short, he took what was ours to be his very own so that we might have all that was his. 'He was rich but he became poor for our sake, so that we might be enriched by his poverty (2 Cor 8:9)'"
 Ibid., 59: "The One Who Exists, is necessarily born of the flesh, taking all that is ours into himself so that all that is born of the flesh, that is us corruptible and perishing beings, might rest in him."
 Ibid., 59-60: " if he who is rich does not impoverish himself… then we have not gained his riches but are still in our poverty, still enslaved by sin and death because Word becoming flesh is the undoing and the abolition of all that fell upon human nature as our curse and punishment…a return which I would say has been gained by Christ the Savior of us all."
 Ibid., 115: "To say that he suffered does no disgrace to him, for he did not disgrace to him, for he did not suffer in the nature of the godhead, but in his own flesh."
 Ibid., 117: "So, even if he is said to suffer in the flesh, even so he retains his impassibility insofar as he is understood as God…he (scripture writer) know that he was speaking about God, and so he attributed impassibility to him insofar as he is understood as God, adding on, most skillfully, 'in the flesh,' which is, of course, where the suffering occurs."
 Ibid., 55: "This is what we mean when we say that he became flesh, and for the same reasons we affirm that the holy virgin is the Mother of God (Theotokos)."
 Ibid., 130-131: "He suffers in his own flesh, and not in the nature of the Godhead. The method of these is altogether ineffable, and there is no mind that can attain to such subtle and transcendent ideas… If the flesh that is united to him, ineffably and in a way that transcends thought or speech."