Gregory_of_NyssaTouch Me not, for I am not yet ascended to My Father: but go to My brethren and say unto them, I ascend unto My Father and your Father, and to My God and your God (John 20:17).

Having by purity brought into closest relationship with the Father of our nature that new man which is created after God, in Whom dwelt all the fulness of the Godhead bodily, He drew with Him into the same grace all the nature that partakes of His body and is akin to Him.

And these glad tidings He proclaims through the woman [Mary Magdalen], not to those disciples only, but also to all who up to the present day become disciples of the Word.

[…] He from Whom we were formerly alienated by our revolt has become our Father and our God. Accordingly in the passage cited above the Lord brings the glad tidings of this benefit.

And the words are not a proof of the degradation of the Son, but the glad tidings of our reconciliation to God. For that which has taken place in Christ’s Humanity is a common boon bestowed on mankind generally.

When we see in Him the weight of the body, which naturally gravitates to earth, ascending through the air into the heavens, we believe according to the words of the Apostle, that we also “shall be caught up in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air” (1 Thess. 4:16).

So also, when we hear that the true God and Father has become the God and Father of our First-fruits, we no longer doubt that the same God has become our God and Father too, inasmuch as we have learned that we shall come to the same place whither Christ has entered for us as our forerunner (cf. Heb. 6:20).

And the fact too that this grace was revealed by means of a woman [Mary Magdalen] itself agrees with the interpretation which we have given.

As the Apostle tells us, “the woman [Eve], being deceived, was in the transgression” (1 Tim. 2:14), and was by her disobedience foremost in the revolt from God.

For this reason she [Mary Magdalen] is the first witness of the resurrection, that she might retrieve by her faith in the resurrection the overthrow caused by her [Eve’s] disobedience.

By making herself at the beginning a minister and advocate to her husband of the counsels of the serpent, she [Eve] brought into human life the beginning of evil, and its train of consequences.

So also, by ministering to His disciples the words of Him Who slew the rebel dragon, she [Mary Magdalen] became to men the guide to faith, whereby with good reason the first proclamation of death is annulled.

Gregory of Nyssa (c 335 – after 394): Against Eunomius, 12,1.

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