St. Ambrose – Bk 2 -Chapter 10

Lord have mercy!

Lord have mercy on us!

The objection taken on the ground of the Son’s obedience is disproved, and the unity of power, Godhead, and operation in the Trinity set forth, Christ’s obedience to His mother, to whom He certainly cannot be called inferior, is noticed.

84. In like manner our adversaries commonly make a difficulty of theSon’s obedience, forasmuch as it is written: And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself, and became obedient even unto death. Philippians 2:7-8 The writer has not only told us that the Son was obedient even unto death, but also first shown that He was man, in order that we might understand that obedience unto death was the part not of His Godhead but of His Incarnation, whereby He took upon Himself both the functions and the names belonging to our nature.

85. Thus we have learned that the power of the Trinity is one, as we are taught both in and after the Passion itself: for the Son suffers through His body, which is the earnest of it; the Holy Spirit is poured upon theapostles: into the Father’s hands the spirit is commended; furthermore,God is with a mighty voice proclaimed the Father. We have learned that there is one form, one likeness, one sanctification, of the Father and of the Son, one activity, one glory, finally, one Godhead.

86. There is, therefore, but one only God, for it is written: You shallworship the Lord your God, and Him only shall you serve.Deuteronomy 6:13 One God, not in the sense that the Father and the Sonare the same Person, as the ungodly Sabellius affirms— but forasmuch as there is one Godhead of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost. But where there is one Godhead, there is one will, one purpose.

87. Again, that you may know that the Father is, and the Son is, and that the work of the Father and of the Son is one, follow the saying of the Apostle: Now may God Himself, and our Father, and our Lord Jesus Christ direct our way unto you. 1 Thessalonians 3:11 Both Father and Son are named, but there is unity of direction, because unity of power. So also in another place we read: Now may our Lord Himself, Jesus Christ, and God and our Father, Who has loved us, and given us eternalconsolation, and good hope in grace, console and strengthen your hearts. 2 Thessalonians 2:15-16 How perfect a unity it is that the Apostlepresents to us, insomuch that the fount of consolation is not many, but one. Let doubt be dumb, then, or, if it will not be overcome by reason, let the thought of our Lord’s gracious kindliness bend it.

88. Let us call to mind how kindly our Lord has dealt with us, in that He taught us not only faith but manners also. For, having taken His place in the form of man, He was subject to Joseph and Mary. Luke 2:51 Was He less than all mankind, then, because He was subject? The part ofdutifulness is one, that of sovereignty is another, but dutifulness does not exclude sovereignty. Wherein, then, was He subject to the Father’slaw? In His body, surely, wherein He was subject to His mother.

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