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Grace and Christology in the Early Church$
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Donald Fairbairn

Print publication date: 2003

Print ISBN-13: 9780199256143

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2003

DOI: 10.1093/0199256144.001.0001

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Grace as the Sharing of Divine Communion in Cyril's Early Writings

Grace as the Sharing of Divine Communion in Cyril's Early Writings

(p.63) 3 Grace as the Sharing of Divine Communion in Cyril's Early Writings
Grace and Christology in the Early Church

Donald Fairbairn (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

This chapter deals with Cyril of Alexandria's writings prior to the Nestorian controversy and asserts that Cyril sees salvation as God's action through the incarnation to rescue humanity from a predicament it could not escape. Grace is primarily God's giving himself to humanity through Christ, and the chapter analyses the various aspects of himself God shares with people. The chapter argues that grace is pre‐eminently God's giving humanity divine sonship by sharing the communion he has within himself, between the persons of the Trinity. The heart of the chapter is an extended discussion of two Greek terms (idios and oikeiotes) that Cyril uses to describe both the difference between Christ's sonship and ours, and the way God shares this communion with us.

Keywords:   adoption, communion, Cyril of Alexandria, grace, holiness, incorruption, natural communion, sonship, three‐act salvation scheme

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