Without Fear of Suffering

Without Fear of Suffering — Second Sunday After Easter — Adult Class — St. Michael’s Anglican Church (APA)

Morning and Evening Readings of Previous Week Leading to Sunday’s Epistle and Gospel

Complete readings can be found in lectionary. Only a summary of the morning and evening readings and key passages are contained in this lesson.

Summary of Morning Readings Monday — Saturday

Psalms

The Lord blesses them that trust in him and tells us to ignore the counsel of liars. Those that trust in him can walk forth with confidence and courage in the face of impossible odds without fear of suffering — indifferent to certain defeat from the world’s perspective. God afflicts and punishes those that do not fear him often through circumstances that arise as natural consequences of disobedience. Those that do not fear him have no hope of a life without fear of suffering. Let all who take refuge in the Lord, rejoice. Our suffering here is a temporary condition. We can live without fear of suffering.

The Lord is not pleased with those who take no regard for his works. Ps 28:5 “Because they do not regard the works of the Lord or the work of his hands, he will tear them down and build them up no more.” A grateful person can live without fear of suffering and keeps suffering in perspective.

Ps 40:4 Blessed is that man that maketh the Lord his trust, and respecteth not the proud, nor such as turn aside to lies.”

When accused, blamed, or defamed, my focus will be on the Lord. The accusers are but vanity of no regard, not worthy of attention, thought, answer, fear, or the tiniest anxiety. The Lord will defend me and plead my cause to an ungodly nation. He will fight for me. What do I have to fear from chaff?

— Those in Christ can always love their enemies with greater ease and pray for them knowing their state is hopeless and escape impossible without God. How we respond to the suffering they cause may be the lifeline by which they are rescued.

— The truth is always better than moving from one comforting lie to another; sometimes layering self-deceit so thick that it seems to take 40 years of wandering in the desert to unravel.

Old Testament Exodus 13 – 17:7

Remember your deliverance by the Passover from impossible affliction and circumstance and dedicate your firstborn. A foreshadowing of salvation and baptism. The Lord leads with a pillar cloud by day and flame by night. He leads the people the long way around for concern that if they face war with the Philistines, they will be greatly tempted to return to Egypt. They are not yet strong enough in conviction. They have not yet shaken off their remembrance of suffering and do not yet have a concept of what it means to live without fear of suffering.

The children of Israel complain that Moses has brought them to die in desert as Pharaoh’s army bears down upon them. “Would it have not been better to die in desert?” Avoiding suffering or lessening it by compromise rather than living completely without fear of suffering, a very poor substitute — a counterfeit of God’s promise.

Moses tells the people Ex 14:14 “The Lord shall fight for you, and ye shall hold your peace.” Egypt’s army is completely destroyed by God. Miriam and the women celebrate the deliverance But soon thereafter the people again murmur impatiently against Moses because they have no water. Interestingly there is no reference that they called out to God but only that they murmured or complained. God warns the people again of the consequences of disobedience.

The people again murmur and complain to Moses and look back to Egypt. Exodus 16:2 And the whole congregation of the children of Israel murmured against Moses and Aaron in the wilderness: 3 And the children of Israel said unto them, Would to God we had died by the hand of the Lord in the land of Egypt, when we sat by the flesh pots, and when we did eat bread to the full; for ye have brought us forth into this wilderness, to kill this whole assembly with hunger.

The people complain again to Moses — not praying or calling out to God. Moses is threatened and exceedingly frustrated; he says to God, “these people are ready to stone me.” Again God brings them water.

— How am I like the Israelites? How am I quick to complain rather than pray? How frequently do I complain to my priest or bishop before I pray? How often have I brought frustration on my spiritual leaders rather than encouragement?

New Testament Hebrews 1 — 5:14

In these last days, Jesus is our king and has purged and forgiven our sins. All that was made will be changed and be put away, but He will remain the same. Pay close attention lest you drift away. All will be subject to the Lord, but we do not yet see it. Jesus has suffered death for us. We can live without fear of death and with him we can live without fear of suffering. We can transcend it and walk above because he has gone before us.

Heb 2:14-15, 17-18 Since therefore the children share in flesh and blood, he himself likewise partook of the same things, that through death he might destroy the one who has the power of death, that is, the devil, 15 and deliver all those who through fear of death were subject to lifelong slavery. … 17 Therefore he had to be made like his brothers in every respect, so that he might become a merciful and faithful high priest in the service of God, to make propitiation for the sins of the people. 18 For because he himself has suffered when tempted, he is able to help those who are being tempted.

Heb 3:7-19 Therefore, as the Holy Spirit says, “Today, if you hear his voice, 8 do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion, on the day of testing in the wilderness, 9 where your fathers put me to the test and saw my works for forty years. 10 Therefore I was provoked with that generation, and said, ‘They always go astray in their heart; they have not known my ways.’ 11 As I swore in my wrath, ‘They shall not enter my rest.'” 12 Take care, brothers, lest there be in any of you an evil, unbelieving heart, leading you to fall away from the living God. 13 But exhort one another every day, as long as it is called “today,” that none of you may be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin. 14 For we have come to share in Christ, if indeed we hold our original confidence firm to the end. 15 As it is said, “Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion.” 16 For who were those who heard and yet rebelled? Was it not all those who left Egypt led by Moses? 17 And with whom was he provoked for forty years? Was it not with those who sinned, whose bodies fell in the wilderness? 18 And to whom did he swear that they would not enter his rest, but to those who were disobedient? 19 So we see that they were unable to enter because of unbelief.

He is our great high priest who has endured temptations beyond that we can imagine and is without sin. It is because of Him that we can cast aside and before Him our weakness and sin. Knowing that he alone can forgive us, that he alone can aid us and lead us to triumph, that he alone can aid us in our suffering, that he alone can enable us to live without fear of suffering. This promise is open to us, if we believe and accept it as a gift.

Summary of Evening Readings Monday — Saturday

Psalms

In peace we can lie down and rest knowing that in the Lord only do we have safety. Who shall dwell upon his holy hill? Those that walk blamelessly, speak truth in their heart, and do right; who honor the Lord, who swear to their own hurt — who suffer to keep their promises. Struggle in prayer and reach deep down to confess all wrong doing and wrong being, the Lord will deliver me. Suffering in prayer brings about stronger belief, trust in God, and the experience of living without fear of suffering.

Ps 29:1b …worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness. Ps 46:1-2 God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. 2 Therefore will not we fear, though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea; 3 Though the waters thereof roar and be troubled, though the mountains shake with the swelling thereof.

My time in this life is short; even the best it offers is vanity. All walk in a vain show heaping up riches, giving no regard for the time to come — evil times or eternity. Wait on the Lord and hope in him.

Psalm 111:10 The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom: a good understanding have all they that do his commandments: his praise endureth for ever.

— How much time do we waste worrying about what others think of us? How does this compare to  our thoughts and prayers to God?

Old Testament Isaiah 40 – 43:7

Jerusalem’s iniquity is pardoned. Prepare ye the way of the Lord. What is high shall be made low. What is low shall be made high. What is crooked shall be made straight. The Lord counts the nations as dust on the scales as less than nothing and emptiness.

Isaiah 40:28-31 “Have you not known? Have you not heard? The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He does not faint or grow weary; his understanding is unsearchable. He gives power to the faint, and to him who has no might he increases strength. Even youths shall faint and be weary, and young men shall fall exhausted; but they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.”

Isaiah 42:6-8 “I am the Lord; I have called you in righteousness; I will take you by the hand and keep you; I will give you as a covenant for the people, a light for the nations, 7 to open the eyes that are blind, to bring out the prisoners from the dungeon, from the prison those who sit in darkness. 8 I am the LORD; that is my name; my glory I give to no other, nor my praise to carved idols. 9 Behold, the former things have come to pass, and new things I now declare; before they spring forth I tell you of them.”

The Lord renews those that wait for him through times of suffering. They can live without fear of suffering.

Isaiah 43:1-4, 5-7 – 1 But now thus saith the LORD that created thee, O Jacob, and he that formed thee, O Israel, Fear not: for I have redeemed thee, I have called thee by thy name; thou art mine. 2 When thou passest through the waters, I will be with thee; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee: when thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burned; neither shall the flame kindle upon thee. 3a For I am the LORD thy God, the Holy One of Israel, thy Saviour:…5 Fear not: for I am with thee: I will bring thy seed from the east, and gather thee from the west; 6 I will say to the north, Give up; and to the south, Keep not back: bring my sons from far, and my daughters from the ends of the earth; 7 Even every one that is called by my name: for I have created him for my glory, I have formed him; yea, I have made him.

New Testament 1 Peter 1 – 3:12

By Jesus’ resurrection we are given an incorruptible, pure, unfading inheritance in heaven. Wherein we greatly rejoice though we suffer temptation; that our faith, being much more precious than gold purified by fire, might be found to glory Christ when he returns.

We were not redeemed with gold or silver or vain argument but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot. By him we believe in God, that raised him up from the dead, and gave him glory; that our faith and hope might be in God. All flesh is as grass, and all the glory of man as it. It withers, but the word of the Lord endures for ever.

We like living stones are being built up as a spiritual house, to be a holy priesthood, to offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. 1 Peter 2:6 For it stands in Scripture: “Behold, I am laying in Zion a stone, a cornerstone chosen and precious, and whoever believes in him will not be put to shame.” 7 So the honor is for you who believe, but for those who do not believe, “The stone that the builders rejected has become the cornerstone,” 8 and “A stone of stumbling, and a rock of offense.” They stumble because they disobey the word, as they were destined to do. 9 But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.10 Once you were not a people, but now you are God’s people; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.”

1 Peter 2:15 For this is the will of God, that by doing good you should put to silence the ignorance of foolish people. 16 Live as people who are free, not using your freedom as a cover-up for evil, but living as servants of God. 17 Honor everyone. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honor the emperor.

— Disobedience leads to suffering which could have been avoided.

1 Peter 3:8-12 ESV – 8 Finally, all of you, have unity of mind, sympathy, brotherly love, a tender heart, and a humble mind. 9 Do not repay evil for evil or reviling for reviling, but on the contrary, bless, for to this you were called, that you may obtain a blessing. 10 For “Whoever desires to love life and see good days, let him keep his tongue from evil and his lips from speaking deceit; 11 let him turn away from evil and do good; let him seek peace and pursue it. 12 For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous, and his ears are open to their prayer. But the face of the Lord is against those who do evil.”

Comments and Questions for Readings before Sunday:

  • How much fear in life is based on the fear of death?
  • Why do people seek out comforting lies rather than face the truth about death?
  • How does the world attempt to compromise with death rather than take the path offered by our Lord? What comforting lies does the world tell about death?
  • How can we transcend suffering and fear of death through Christ?
  • How does complaining weaken our spiritual strength and discourage those around us?
  • How frequently do we complain before we prayer? How can I make my first reflex to pray instead to complain?
  • As we consider the external deliverance from Egypt, the internal struggle voiced by the Israelites in wanting to return to Egypt — and its external benefits, and much suffering resulting from our complaining about circumstance, where should we draw our battle lines for prayer? How can we focus most of our prayer on internal change or transformation?
  • Will not permanent external transformation result from a prayer life that attacks pride, anger, strife, selfish ambition, impatience, ingratitude, etc.? Lord forgive me and heal me of… 490+ if necessary.

The Epistle

1 Peter 2:19-25 KJV – 19 For this is thankworthy, if a man for conscience toward God endure grief, suffering wrongfully. 20 For what glory is it, if, when ye be buffeted for your faults, ye shall take it patiently? but if, when ye do well, and suffer for it, ye take it patiently, this is acceptable with God. 21 For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps: 22 Who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth: 23 Who, when he was reviled, reviled not again; when he suffered, he threatened not; but committed himself to him that judgeth righteously: 24 Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed. 25 For ye were as sheep going astray; but are now returned unto the Shepherd and Bishop of your souls.

1 Peter 2:19-25 ESV – 19 For this is a gracious thing, when, mindful of God, one endures sorrows while suffering unjustly. 20 For what credit is it if, when you sin and are beaten for it, you endure? But if when you do good and suffer for it you endure, this is a gracious thing in the sight of God. 21 For to this you have been called, because Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example, so that you might follow in his steps. 22 He committed no sin, neither was deceit found in his mouth. 23 When he was reviled, he did not revile in return; when he suffered, he did not threaten, but continued entrusting himself to him who judges justly. 24 He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, that we might die to sin and live to righteousness. By his wounds you have been healed. 25 For you were straying like sheep, but have now returned to the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls.

Commentary (from Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture, IVP):

God Too Suffered Unjustly verse 19 Hilary of Arles Introductory Commentary on 1 Peter  You will be approved by God if you suffer unjustly, because you know that that is exactly what he did.

Christ Too Was Beaten verse 20 Bede On 1 Peter Be sure to note carefully the extent to which Peter beholds glory even in the state of slavery, by saying that those who do well and are blameless but who are beaten by cruel and dishonest masters are following in the footsteps of Christ, who suffered unjustly on our behalf. That is something to rejoice about!

By Suffering Himself, verse 21 Augustine Sermons 284.6 Christ taught you to suffer, and he did so by suffering himself. Words would not be enough unless example were added. An how, precisely did he teach us, brothers and sisters? He was hanging on the cross, and the Jews were raging…he was hanging there, yet at the same time he was healing them.

Behold His Example, verse 21 Andreas Catena  Having told servants to put up with unjust suffering, which was a bitter pill for them to swallow, Peter now comforts them by referring to Christ’s long-suffering. It is as if he were saying: “I am not trying to persuade you to put up with injustice simply by arguments. Rather stand back and look at your master as freemen in Christ, and you will be comforted.”

He Paid For Our Sin,  verse 22 Theodoret of Cyr, On Divine Providence 10.26 Christ was nailed to the cross, paying the penalty not for his own sins but paying the debt of our nature. Four our nature was in debt after transgressing the laws of its maker. And since it was in debt and unable to pay, the creator himself in his wisdom devised a way of paying the debt and thereby freeing human nature.

Christ Did Not Answer His Accusers, verse 23 Didymus the Blind Commentary on 1 Peter Jesus did not curse those who insulted him but handed them over to God, who is a just judge. For although the divine union of God and man in Christ is holy and undivided, yet there is a distinction to be made between the mind of the man assumed and the mind of the person assuming him.

— His accusers were speaking lies because they knew him not. If we blame God, we are lying.

Proverbs 19:3 KJV – 3 The foolishness of man perverteth his way: and his heart fretteth against the Lord.

Proverbs 19:3 ESV – 3 When a man’s folly brings his way to ruin, his heart rages against  the Lord.

Never seek justice, but never cease to give it. Oswald Chambers

He Bore Our Transgressions, verse 24 Severus of Antioch Catena The one who offered himself for our sins had no sin of his own. Instead he bore our transgressions in himself and was made a sacrifice for them. This principle is set out in the law, for what sin did the lamb or the goat have, which were sacrificed for sins and which were call “sin” for this reason?

The Guardian of Your Souls, verse 25 Hilary of Arles  Introductory Commentary on 1 Peter Error has three causes— darkness, loneliness, and ignorance. The sheep were wandering among idols because of their foolish ignorance, and they found themselves lost in the darkness of sin and in loneliness of a strange nation. Now they have turned to the guardian of their souls,

Shepherd and Guardian, verse 5:12 Bede On 1 Peter Peter alludes to the parable in Gospels where the Good Shepherd leaves the ninety-nine sheep in the desert and goes after the one who has gone astray. For as it is said there, when he finds it he puts it on his should and rejoices. Jesus wanted to redeem us so much that he put our sins on his shoulder and bore them for us on the tree, in order to give us eternal life as well as blessings in this world. He comes to us daily to visit the light which he has given us, in order to tend it and to help it grow. This is why he is called not only the shepherd but also the guardian of our souls.

Comments and Questions:

  • Will I insist upon holding on to my own understanding of suffering or will I trust God?
  • This is never a one time fight. Maturing in my attitude toward Godly suffering is sometimes a minute by minute prayer war. Again and again we must pray, “I trust you Lord. I believe you know all about this. I will not worry. I will not fear. I believe. Help me overcome my unbelief.” Our commitment to continuously hand our troubles over to God will forge whatever suffering we face into a joy — eventually. Our expectation of a quick solution can rob us of the joy of being molded by God, so patience or long-suffering goes hand in hand with joy.

The Gospel

John 10:11-16 KJV – 11 I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep. 12 But he that is an hireling, and not the shepherd, whose own the sheep are not, seeth the wolf coming, and leaveth the sheep, and fleeth: and the wolf catcheth them, and scattereth the sheep. 13 The hireling fleeth, because he is an hireling, and careth not for the sheep. 14 I am the good shepherd, and know my sheep, and am known of mine. 15 As the Father knoweth me, even so know I the Father: and I lay down my life for the sheep. 16 And other sheep I have, which are not of this fold: them also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice; and there shall be one fold, and one shepherd.

John 10:11-16 ESV – 11 I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. 12 He who is a hired hand and not a shepherd, who does not own the sheep, sees the wolf coming and leaves the sheep and flees, and the wolf snatches them and scatters them. 13 He flees because he is a hired hand and cares nothing for the sheep. 14 I am the good shepherd. I know my own and my own know me, 15 just as the Father knows me and I know the Father; and I lay down my life for the sheep. 16 And I have other sheep that are not of this fold. I must bring them also, and they will listen to my voice. So there will be one flock, one shepherd.

The Shepherd of the Shepherds, verse 11 Augustine Tractates on the Gospel of John Above he said that the good Shepherd entered through the door. If he is the Door, how does he enter through himself?… Just as he knows the Fatter through himself and we know the Father through him, so he enters into the fold through himself and we enter through him. Through Christ we [pastors] have have a door of entrance to you; and why? Because we preach Christ and therefore enter in through the door. But Christ preaches Christ too because he preaches himself; and so the Shepherd enters in through himself… He is also the door to the Father, for there is no way of approach to the Water except through him.. And indeed brothers and sisters, because he is the Shepherd, he has permitted his members to bear the office of shepherd . Both Peter and Paul and all the other apostles were shepherds: all good bishops are shepherds. But none of us calls himself the door.

The Good Shepherd is Good for Us, verse 11 Gregory the Great  Forty Gospel Homilies 15 He whose goodness is his own nature and not some nonessential gift, says, “I am the good Shepherd.” He adds the character of this goodness, which we are to imitate, saying, “the good Shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.” He did what he taught; he gave an example of what he commanded. The good Shepherd has laid down his life for his sheep in order to change his body and blood into a sacrament for us and to satisfy the sheep he had redeemed with his own body as food. The way of contempt for death that we are to follow has been shown us, the mold that is to for us is there. The first thing we are to do is to devote our external goods to his sheep in mercy. Then, if it should be necessary, we are to offer even our death for these same sheep… If someone does not give his substance to the sheep, how can he lay down his life for them?

The Hireling Rejoices in Pride of Position, verse 12 Gregory the Great Forty Gospel Homilies There are some who love earthly possessions more than the sheep and do not deserve the name of a shepherd… He is called a hireling and not a shepherd because he does not pasture the Lord’s sheep out of his deep love for them but for a temporal reward. That person is a hireling who holds the place of a shepherd but does not seek to profit souls. He is eager for earthly advantages, rejoices in the honor of preferment, feeds on temporal gain and enjoys the deference offered him by other people.

The Devil Scatters Through Temptation, verse 12 Gregory the Great 40 Gospel Homilies There is another wolf that ceaselessly, every day, tears apart minds, not bodies. This is the evil spirit that goes about attacking the sheepfold of believers, seeking the death of souls. Of this wolf it is said, “And the wolf snatches and scatters the sheep”. The wolf comes, and the hireling flees. The evil spirit tears apart minds of believers in temptation, and the one holding the place of the Shepard does not take responsibility. Souls are perishing, and he enjoys earthly advantages. The wolf snatches and scatters the sheep when he entices one to drunkenness, inflames another with greed, examples another by pride, destroys, another by anger, stirs one up by envy, trips up another by deceit. When the devil slays believers through temptations, he is like a wolf dispersing the flock. No zeal rouses the hireling against theist temptations, no love excites him. He seeks only the outward advantages and carelessly allows the inward injury to his flock.

Commentary incomplete after verse 12

Our Commentators

St. Augustine, also called Saint Augustine of Hippo, original Latin name Aurelius Augustinus, (born November 13, 354, Tagaste, Numidia [now Souk Ahras, Algeria]—died August 28, 430, Hippo Regius [now Annaba, Algeria]; feast day August 28), bishop of Hippo from 396 to 430, one of the Latin Fathers of the Church and perhaps the most significant Christian thinker after St. Paul. Augustine’s adaptation of classical thought to Christian teaching created a theological system of great power and lasting influence. His numerous written works, the most important of which are Confessions (c. 400) and The City of God (c. 413–426), shaped the practice of biblical exegesis and helped lay the foundation for much of medieval and modern Christian thought. From Britannica

St. Bede the Venerable, Bede (born 672/673, traditionally Monkton in Jarrow, Northumbria [England]—died May 25, 735. During his lifetime and throughout the Middle Ages, Bede’s reputation was based mainly on his scriptural commentaries, copies of which found their way to many of the monastic libraries of western Europe. The method of dating events from the time of the incarnation, or Christ’s birth—i.e., AD (anno Domini, “in the year of our Lord”)—came into general use through the popularity of the Historia ecclesiastica and the two works on chronology. Bede’s influence was perpetuated at home through the school founded at York by his pupil Archbishop Egbert of York and was transmitted to the rest of Europe by Alcuin, who studied there before becoming master of Charlemagne’s palace school at Aachen. From Britannica

Hilary of Arles, Latin Hilarius, (born 401, probably northern Gaul—died May 5, 449, Arles; Gallo-Roman bishop of Arles who is often regarded as providing the occasion for extending papal authority in Gaul. While young, Hilary entered the Abbey of Lérins that was presided over by his kinsman Honoratus, who later became bishop of Arles. In 429 Hilary succeeded Honoratus as bishop and vigorously promoted reforms through several councils, From Britannica

Andreas, monk who collected commentary from earlier writers to form a catena on various biblical books. From ACCS

Didymus The Blind, (born c. 313, Alexandria, Egypt—died c. 398, Alexandria), Eastern church theologian who headed the influential catechetical school of Alexandria. According to Palladius, the 5th-century bishop and historian, Didymus, despite having been blind since childhood and remaining a layman all his life, became one of the most learned ascetics of his time. Among those holding him in great esteem were Athanasius the Great, bishop of Alexandria, who made him head of the Alexandrian school, and Jerome, who acknowledged Didymus as his master. Jerome later retracted, however, when the works of Didymus, but not his person, were condemned by the Second Council of Constantinople (553) for teaching the doctrine of Origen(q.v.). Because of this condemnation, most of his works were not copied during the European Middle Ages and thus were lost. He was a leading opponent of Arianism (the Christian heresy that Christ is not truly divine but a created being). From Britannica

Severus of Antioch, (born c. 465, Sozopolis, Pisidia, Asia Minor [near modern Konya, Turkey]—died 538, Xois, Egypt), Greek Christian monk-theologian, patriarch of Antioch, and miaphysite leader during the reigns of the Byzantine emperors Anastasius I (491–518) and Justinian I (527–565). His later ecclesiastical condemnation and exile hastened the sect’s eventual decline, particularly in Syria and Egypt. Severus studied theology in Alexandria and lived as a monk in Palestine before being ordained a priest. He was a leading proponent of miaphysitism, a Christological perspective that viewed Jesus Christ’s human and divine natures as being united through the Incarnation in a single nature. Proponents of miaphysitism rejected the position that had been accepted at the Council of Chalcedon in 451, which held that Christ’s two natures were distinct. In the council’s wake, many miaphysites were dismissed or even condemned as advocates of monophysitism—the perspective that Christ’s divine nature had subsumed his inconsequential human nature—a charge that they strenuously denied. From Britanica

Theodoret Of Cyrrhus, (born c. 393, Antioch, Syria—died c. 458, /466), Syrian theologian-bishop, representative of Antioch’s historico-critical school of biblical-theological interpretation, whose writings were a moderating influence on the 5th-century Christological disputes and contributed to the development of the Christian theological vocabulary. First a monk, then by 423 bishop of Cyrrhus, near Antioch, Theodoret evangelized the region and contended with Christian sectarians in doctrinal questions giving rise to several treatises on apologetics, the systematic exposition of Christian faith, one of which, Therapeutikē (“The Cure for Pagan Evils”), has become a minor classic. From Britanica

 

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