Gleanings from Orthodox Christian Authors and the Holy Fathers


...'you will call His name Emmanuel' (Isa 7:14), that is, you will acknowledge that God has appeared in human form. For it was when the only begotten Word of God appeared like us that He became 'God with us'. He who transcends the whole of nature became as we are. Observe how in order to show that He was truly God as well as man, the prophet assigned to Him attributes that were both divine and human.

For when he says that He was given food suitable for infants, namely butter and honey, he is trying to assure us that He came to be in the flesh in reality. Then he goes on to teach that although He did indeed become flesh He was nonetheless as God superior to sin, for he adds at once: 'For before the child knows good and evil. he will reject evil and choose the good.' (Isa 7:15-16 LXX)...

The divine and supreme nature, unlike our own, but in keeping with the sublime character that is peculiar and appropriate to it, is ever inaccessible to wickedness...The phrase 'he will reject evil and choose the good' therefore signifies that it belongs to the divine nature to be irrevocably fixed on the good...even though He came into being according to the flesh through the Holy Virgin, since He was God by nature and the Word begotten by God, He was holy as God both from the womb and before it, or rather before all ages, seeing that He did not lose His own prerogatives on account of the human nature. Neither did He ignore what pertains to human nature on account of the dispensation of the Incarnation, in order that He might be believed to have become like us in reality, and might sanctify this created nature of ours. St. Cyril of Alexandria (Commentary On Isaiah, Isa 7:14-16; Cyril of Alexandria written and translated by Norman Russell; Routledge pg. 79-80)

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