AthanasiusContinued from here….

And of this one may be assured at the hands of the Saviour’s own inspired writers, if one happen upon their writings, where they say:

“For the love of Christ constraineth us; because we thus judge, that if one died for all, then all died, and He died for all that we should no longer live unto ourselves, but unto Him Who for our sakes died and rose again” (2 Cor. 5:14), our Lord Jesus Christ.

And, again: “But we behold Him, Who hath been made a little lower than the angels, even Jesus, because of the suffering of death crowned with glory and honour, that by the grace of God He should taste of death for every man” (Heb. 2:9f).

Then He also points out the reason why it was necessary for none other than God the Word Himself to become incarnate; as follows:

“For it became Him, for Whom are all things, and through Whom are all things, in bringing many sons unto glory, to make the Captain of their salvation perfect through suffering.”

By these words He means that it belonged to none other to bring man back from the corruption which had begun than the Word of God, Who had also made them from the beginning.

It was in order to be a sacrifice for bodies such as His own that the Word Himself also assumed a body, as these words show:

“forasmuch then as the children are the sharers in blood and flesh, He also Himself in like manner partook of the same, that through death He might bring to naught Him that had the power of death, that is, the devil; and might deliver them who, through fear of death, were all their lifetime subject to bondage” (Heb. 2:14ff).

For by the sacrifice of His own body, He both put an end to the law which was against us, and made a new beginning of life for us, by the hope of resurrection which He has given us.

For since from man it was that death prevailed over men, for this cause conversely, by the Word of God being made man has come about the destruction of death and the resurrection of life…:

“for since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ shall all be made alive” (1 Cor. 15:21).

For no longer now do we die as subject to condemnation; but as men who rise from the dead we await the general resurrection of all, “which.in its own times He shall show” (1 Tim. 6:15), even God, Who has also wrought it, and bestowed it upon us.

Athanasius of Alexandria (c.293-373): On the Incarnation of the Word, 10 [slightly adapted].

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