Gregory of Nazianzus, Festal Oration 45, §3
- Christ is Risen! + Truly He is Risen!
Godalways was, always is, and always will be; or rather,Godalways Is.For Was and
Will Be are fragments of ourtime, and of changeablenature. But He
isEternalBeing; and this is the Name He gives Himself when giving
theOraclestoMosesin the Mount. For in Himself He sums up and contains all Being,
having neither beginning in the past nor end in thefuture...
like some great Sea of Being, limitless and unbounded, transcending all
conception oftimeandnature, onlyadumbratedby themind, and that very dimly
andscantily...notby HisEssentialsbut by HisEnvironment,one image being got from
one source and another from another, and combined into some sort of presentation
of thetruth, which escapes us before we have caught it, and which takes to
flight before we have conceived it, blazing forth upon our master-part, even
when that is cleansed, as the lightning flash which will not stay itscourse does
inorder, as I conceive, by that part of it which we can comprehend to draw us to
itself (for that which is altogether incomprehensible is outside the bounds
ofhope, and not within the compass of endeavor); and by that part of It which we
cannot comprehend to move our wonder; and as an object of wonder to become more
an object of desire; and being desired, to purify; and purifying to make us
likeGod; so that, when we have become like Himself,Godmay, to use a bold
expression, hold converse with us asGod; being united to us, andknownby us; and
that perhaps to the same extent as He alreadyknowsthose who areknownto Him.
The DivineNature, then, is boundless and hard to understand, and all that we can
comprehend of Him is Hisboundlessness; even though one may conceive that because
He is of a simpleNatureHe is therefore either wholly incomprehensible or
perfectly comprehensible. For let us farther inquire what is implied byis of a
simpleNature?For it is quitecertainthat this simplicity is not itself itsnature,
just as composition is not by itself theessenceof compound beings.
Gregory of Nazianzus, Festal Oration 45,