Sunday, August 23, 2009

Catechetical Quote: St. Cyril of Jerusalem on the Remedy for Idolatry

This selection from St. Cyril's Catechetical Lectures (Lecture VI) focuses on God the Father (and glorified with Him the Son and the Holy Spirit together), and then segways into the issue of heresy. Reading this I think of two things. One is St. Paul's introduction to Romans. The other is Christ's work in the Eucharistic Sacrifice, which contrasts wonderfully against Adam's fall.
11. Whence came the polytheistic error of the Greeks? God has no body: whence then the adulteries alleged among those who are by them called gods? I say nothing of the transformations of Zeus into a swan: I am ashamed to speak of his transformations into a bull: for bellowings are unworthy of a god. The god of the Greeks has been found an adulterer, yet are they not ashamed: for if he is an adulterer let him not be called a god. They tell also of deaths of their gods. Seest thou from how great a height and how low they have fallen? Was it without reason then that the Son of God came down from heaven? or was it that He might heal so great a wound? Was it without reason that the Son came? or was it in order that the Father might be acknowledged? Thou hast learned what moved the Only-begotten to come down from the throne at God’s right hand. The Father was despised, the Son must needs correct the error: for He Through Whom All Things Were Made must bring them all as offerings to the Lord of all. The wound must be healed: for what could be worse than this disease, that a stone should be worshipped instead of God?

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