THE anthropology of the Logos has for its object a knowledge of the Logos from the time He began to become a man until He became a perfect man, anointed with the Holy Spirit, and perfected with respect to the human nature assumed by Him in order to enter public life and perform the duties attaching to His anointment and mission in the world of men. It purposes to know the Logos with respect to all the attributes of human nature, and with respect to the two natures which the Logos combined in Himself when born of a woman and become a man while remaining as He was a perfect God and without at all relinquishing the divine and immutable nature He had always had. It being admitted, then, that the Logos became a man, let us first seek to learn why He did, what the cause was on account of which the Logos needed and ought to have become a man; and whether this fact conforms and comports with the divine, eternal, and perfect nature of the Logos.
ACCOUNTING FOR THE INCARNATION OF THE LOGOS
The cause of the incarnation of the Logos lies in the perfect will of His divine nature, which will is to be characterized as free, rational, moral, pacific, sinless, and both positively and negatively concordant with the perfect will of God, His Father. Inasmuch as the good Father wills the perfect imparting of the good – that is to say, to create a man and men in the image and likeness of God, sharers and partakers of the divine and perfect nature – the Logos wills the same, and wills to create everything that can possibly come into existence, with a view to compassing and realizing the whole design of the good Father. On the other hand, He cannot will or do anything contrary to the design of the Father, but can will and do only whatever is consonant, conducive, and conformable thereto. Therefore, the Logos was by His own free will and choice a man from the beginning, before Creation and before all times and ages; and consequently ought to have become also in reality a man in the image and likeness of God, in the foreknown and fixed season and time for His creation and generation.
The generation of the Logos in time from a woman was a natural consequence of His eternal generation from the Father, and was the final purpose of Creation, which has for its efficient cause the eternal generation of the Logos from the Father. Creation lies between the two generations of the Logos, the eternal divine and the time-limited human; and it has the first for it efficient cause, and the second for its final cause. Accordingly, the theology of the Logos satisfactorily accounts for the anthropology of the Logos; and both generations enable us satisfactorily to account for and explain the universe, God, the world, man, the relations between them, and all that has occurred, is occurring, or ever will occur as a result of these relations. The anthropology of the Logos has revealed the mystery of theology, and both have revealed the unknown and unrecognized God, the world in general, man on earth, the relations between them, and the consequences of these relations.
If the Logos had not become a man, there would not have been revealed to men the single God manifest in three persons, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, nor the final purpose of man and of all Creation. Accordingly, the universe would have remained forever inexplicable and incomprehensible, since there would appear to be no reason for its existence and for the occurrence of the events that take place in it. The attempts of ancient philosophers before the incarnation of the Logos to arrive at a logical and scientific comprehension of the universe, and their failure to do so, bear witness to the truth of this statement. But when the Logos became incarnate, conversed with men, died a violent and unjust death, rose from the dead, and ascended to heaven, He became a great light which showed and continues to show to those who are sound of mind everything that was hitherto mysterious and unknown. The Logos incarnate, being made the object of Philosophy, and being methodically studied and understood with respect to His two natures and generations which are not to be confounded, shows to those who speculate philosophically what God is, what the world is, what man is, what the relations between them, and what the consequences of these relations are; – in a word, everything that is unknown, when methodically sought for becomes known through this true object of philosophy
It was with good reason, therefore, that the angels praised God for the generation of the Logos from the holy Virgin, saying: “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.” (Luke 2:14.) By becoming incarnate the Logos did indeed glorify God, having revealed God’s perfect essence and nature; and He saved man and imparted to him the virtues and attributes of the divine nature; moreover, He renews and perfects the still imperfect and unfinished Creation, which is being destroyed by the counteraction and misconduct of the cunning Devil. The incarnation, therefore, of the Logos was not unbecoming a God, and is satisfactorily accounted for. In what manner this great work, which befitted God and benefited man to the utmost, came to pass, we learn from the historical narrative of the Evangelist St. Luke.
HISTORICAL NARRATIVE OF ST. LUKE, THE EVANGELIST, CONCERNING THE INCARNATION OF THE LOGOS
The manner of the incarnation of the Logos is recounted by the Evangelist St. Luke as follows:
- “In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God unto a city of Galilee, named Nazareth, to a virgin espoused to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David; and the virgin’s name was Mary. And the angel came in unto her, and said, Hail, thou that art highly favoured, the Lord is with thee: blessed art thou among women. And when she saw him, she was troubled at his saying, and cast in her mind what manner of salutation this should be. And the angel said unto her, Fear not, Mary: for thou hast found favour with God. And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name Jesus. He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David: and he shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever: and of his kingdom there shall be no end. Then said Mary unto the angel, How shall this be, seeing I know not a man? And the angel answered and said unto her, The Holy Spirit shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God. And, behold, thy cousin Elisabeth, bath also conceived a son in her old age: and this is the sixth month with· her, who was called barren. For with God nothing shall be impossible. And Mary said, Behold the handmaid of the Lord; be it unto me according to thy word. And the angel departed from her.”
This is the historical narrative of the incarnation of the Logos, and we can understand from it the following: When the Virgin comprehended the design of God from the words of the angel, and wished it to be realized in fact, the conception of the Logos took place in the holy womb of the Virgin by favor of the beginningless Father and with the co-operation of the Holy Spirit; and now it was that God truly began to create the man of the great design, for the sake of whom He created all things. Now it was that God’s final design, which was declared before the formation of Adam, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness,” was to become a fact through the co-operation of the three co-eternal persons of the Holy Trinity. The Father took to wife the holy Virgin dedicated to Him, employing the archangel Gabriel as go-between; the Son was placed as a principle and substance in the holy Virgin’s womb for the formation of the new godlike man from her pure blood; the Holy Spirit built creatively round the substance of the Son the flesh of the new man; flesh that was alive and animate, nourished and augmented from the living and animate flesh of the holy Virgin until the time of birth, or generation, equal to the time of the birth of born men. Therefore the new man is the work of all three persons of the Holy Trinity in conformity with the final design of God the Father, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness.” Moreover, the first man formed out of the earth was made for the sake of this new man, who is the final purpose, or aim, of all Creation. Now let us consider the similarities and analogies of this wondrous fact comparatively with our own birth, or generation.
(to be continued)…