Quodlibetal Questions, IX, q. 2, a. 1[2]

Utrum in Christo sit una hypostasis tantum. Ad primum sic proceditur."Whether there is only one hypostasis in Christ."
Videtur quod in Christo sint plures hypostases. It seems that there are many hypostases in Christ.
Unio enim animae ad corpus praesupponitur ad assumptionem; quia Christus humanitatem sive humanam naturam assumpsit, quae, cum sit forma totius, dicit aliquid compositum ex anima et corpore. Sed anima et corpus unita faciunt hypostasim hominis. Ergo hypostasis in humana natura praeintelligitur assumptioni. Sed omne quod praeintelligitur assumptioni, potest dici esse assumptum. Ergo hypostasis Verbi assumpsit hypostasim hominis...; et sic sunt duae hypostases in Christo. 1. For the assumption presupposes the union of the soul to the body, because Christ assumed his humanity or a human nature, which, since it is the form of a whole designates something composed from a soul and a body; but the united soul and body produce the hypostasis of a man. Therefore, a hypostasis in a human nature is presupposed in the assumption; but everything that the assumption presupposes can be called assumed; therefore, the hypostasis of the Word assumed the hypostasis of a man. ["The thing assuming is not the thing assumed", according to Boethius. Therefore, the hypostasis of man and the hypostasis of the Word differ in Christ]; and thus there are two hypostases there.
Praeterea, corpus quod praeintelligitur assumptioni, est assumptibile. Sed corpus non est assumptibile nisi ut unitum animae rationali: non enim dicitur corpus inanimatum esse assumptibile. Ergo unio animae et corporis praeintelligitur ad assumptionem humanae naturae; et sic idem quod prius.2. Further, the body, which the assumption presupposes, is assumable: but the body is not assumable except as united to a rational soul; for an inanimate body is not said to be assumable. Therefore, the union of the soul to the body is presupposed to the assumption of human nature; and thus the same conclusion as the first objection follows.
Praeterea, medium unionis praesupponitur ad unionem. Sed gratia est medium unionis humanae naturae ad divinam personam, unde dicitur gratia unionis. Ergo praesupponitur ad unionem. Gratia autem non potest intelligi nisi in anima; anima autem non intelligitur esse antequam corpori uniatur: quia creando infunditur, et infundendo creatur. Ergo oportet praeintelligi unionem animae cum corpore, ad unionem humanae naturae cum divina; et sic idem quod prius. 3. The medium of the union is presupposed to the union; but grace is the medium of the union of the human nature to the divine person, hence it is called the grace of union; therefore, it is presupposed to the union. But grace cannot be understood except in a soul, nor is a soul understood to exist before being united to a body, because "by being created it is infused and by being infused it is created". Therefore, it is necessary to understand the union of the soul with the body before the union of the human nature with the divine. Thus, we get the same objection as before.
Praeterea, humanitas est quaedam forma substantialis. Omnis autem forma substantialis requirit aliquid quod per ipsam informetur. Non autem potest dici quod hypostasis vel suppositum aeternum informetur per aliquam formam creatam. Ergo oportet in Christo ponere aliquod suppositum vel hypostasim creatam, quae humanitate informetur; et sic in Christo erunt duae hypostases: hypostasis scilicet Verbi, et hypostasis hominis. 4. Further, Humanity is a certain substantial form; but every substantial form requires something that is informed through it. Now it cannot be said that the eternal hypostasis or suppositum is informed through some created form. Therefore it is necessary to posit some suppositum or created hypostasis in Christ which may be informed by the humanity; and thus there are two hypostases in Christ, namely, the hypostasis of the Word and the hypostasis of the man.
Sed contra. Ea quae sunt ad invicem disparata, non praedicantur de se invicem, nisi per hoc quod conveniunt in uno supposito; sicut dicimus quod album est dulce, propter unitatem subiecti. Sed divina natura et humana sunt naturae penitus disparatae; praedicantur autem de se invicem in concreto; dicimus enim, Deus est homo, et homo est Deus. Ergo est ibi unum suppositum tantum, et una hypostasis. To the contrary, (1) those things which are disparate from one another are not predicated of one another, unless they belong to one suppositum, just as we say that a white thing is sweet on account of the unity of the subject; but the divine nature and the human nature are utterly disparate natures, but they are predicated of one another in the concrete (in concreto). For we say "God is man", and "Man is God"; therefore, there is only one suppositum and one hypostasis there.
Si dicatur, quod praedicatur de se invicem propter hoc quod conveniunt in una persona, non per hoc quod conveniunt in uno supposito, vel hypostasi una, sicut dicimus, album est dulce; contra: persona non addit supra hypostasim vel suppositum nisi aliquod accidens, scilicet proprietatem ad dignitatem pertinentem. Si ergo in Christo esset una persona, et non unum suppositum vel hypostasis, divina natura et humana essent in ipso unitae solum in accidente; quod falsum est. (2) If it is said that things are predicated of one another on account of the fact that they share in one person, but not in one suppositum or one hypostasis, to the contrary: person does not add [anything] beyond a hypostasis or a suppositum except something accidental, namely, a property pertaining to dignity; therefore, if there were one person and not one suppositum and hypostasis in Christ, the divine nature and the human nature would be united in him only accidentally, which is false.
Respondeo. Dicendum, quod secundum opinionem secundam, quam Magister dist. 6 lib. III Sententiarum ponit, quae est communis opinio modernorum, et aliis multo verior et securior, in Christo est unum suppositum tantum, et una tantum hypostasis, sicut et persona una. I answer that, according to the second opinion which Peter Lombard posits in distinction VI, of book III of the Sentences, which is the common opinion of recent writers and is truer and safer than the others [i.e. opinions] by far: there is only one suppositum and only one hypostasis in Christ, just as there is one person.
Oportet namque nos secundum doctrinam fidei ponere unam rem subsistentem in duabus naturis, divina scilicet, et humana: alias non posset dici, quod unus esset Dominus Iesus Christus secundum sententiam Apostoli, I Ad Cor. viii, 6. Unde et Nestorius fuit damnatus propter hoc quod Christum praesumpsit dividere, duas introducens personas.For truly it is necessary that we posit one thing subsisting in two natures, namely human and divine, according to the teaching of the faith. Otherwise, it could not be said that the Lord Jesus Christ is one according to the statement of the Apostle, I Corinthians, VIII. Hence Nestorius was condemned on account of the fact that he presumed to divide Christ, introducing two persons.
Illud autem quod est subsistens in natura, est aliquod individuum et singulare: unde unitas Christi, in qua duae naturae uniuntur, attribuenda est alicui nomini per quod singularitas designetur. Nominum autem quae singularitatem designant, quaedam significant singulare in quolibet genere entis, sicut hoc nomen singulare et particulare et individuum, quia haec albedo est quoddam singulare et particulare et individuum; nam universale et particulare circumeunt omne genus. Quaedam vero significant singulare solum in genere substantiae; sicut hoc nomen hypostasis, quod significat individuam substantiam; et hoc nomen persona, quod significat substantiam individuam rationalis naturae: et similiter hoc nomen suppositum vel res naturae; quorum nullum de hac albedine potest praedicari, quamvis haec albedo sit singularis; eo quod unumquodque eorum significat aliquid ut subsistens, accidentia vero non subsistunt. Partes vero substantiarum quamvis sint de natura subsistentium, non tamen per se subsistunt, sed in alio sunt; unde etiam praedicta nomina de partibus substantiarum non dicuntur: non enim dicimus quod haec manus sit hypostasis vel persona, vel suppositum, vel res naturae, quamvis possit dici quod sit quoddam individuum, vel particulare, vel singulare, quae nomina de accidentibus dicebantur.Now that which is subsisting in a nature is something individual or singular. Hence, the unity of Christ, in which the two natures are united, must be attributed to some name through which singularity is designated. However, of those names which designate singularity, certain ones signify a singular thing in any genus of beings, such as the name 'singular', so also both 'particular' and 'individual', because this whiteness is a certain singular both individual and particular. For the universal and the particular extend to every genus. But certain names signify singularity only in the genus of substance, as the name 'hypostasis', which signifies an individual substance, and the name 'person', which signifies an individual substance of a rational nature; and similarly the name 'suppositum' or 'a thing of nature', none of which can be predicated of this whiteness, although this whiteness is singular, to the extent that each of these names signify something subsisting per se, but accidents do not subsist [in this way]. In fact, the parts of substances, although they are of the nature of subsisting things, nevertheless do not subsist per se, but they are in another; thus, even the aforesaid names are not said of the parts of substances; for we do not say that this hand is a hypostasis, a person, a suppositum, or a thing of nature, although it may be said that it is a certain individual or particular or singular, which names are also said of accidents.
Non autem potest dici quod humana natura in Christo, vel aliqua pars eius, sit per se subsistens: hoc enim unioni repugnaret; nisi poneremus unionem secundum quid et non simpliciter: sicut uniuntur lapides in acervo, vel duo homines per effectum amoris, vel per aliquam imitationis similitudinem: quae omnia dicimus esse unum secundum quid, et non simpliciter. Quod enim est simpliciter unum et per se subsistens, nihil continet actu per subsistens, sed forte in potentia. Unde servata veritate unionis naturarum in Christo, oportet ponere sicut unam personam, ita unam hypostasim, et unum suppositum, et unam rem duarum naturarum. Sed ipsam humanam naturam in Christo nihil prohibet dicere esse quoddam individuum, aut singulare, aut particulare; et similiter quaslibet partes humanae naturae, ut manus et pedes et ossa, quorum quodlibet est quoddam individuum: non tamen quod de toto praedicetur, quia nullum eorum est individuum per se subsistens. Sed individuum per se subsistens, vel singulare, vel particulare, quod praedicatur de Christo, est unum tantum. Now it cannot be said that the human nature in Christ or some part of it is subsisting per se: for this is contrary to the union, unless we posited a union in a certain respect and not absolutely [secundum quid et non simpliciter], as stones are united in a pile or [as] two men [are united] through the desire of love or through some likeness of imitation, all of which we call one in a certain respect and not simply. For that which is one thing, subsisting per se simply, contains nothing subsisting per se actually, but perhaps it does potentially. Hence, having preserved the truth of the union of natures in Christ, just as it is necessary to posit one person, so also one hypostasis, one suppositum and one thing of two natures [must be posited]. But nothing prevents saying that the human nature in Christ is a certain individual or singular or particular; and similarly any part of the human nature, as hands and feet and bones, each of which is a certain individual, yet it is not what is predicated of the whole, since none of them is an individual subsisting per se; but the individual subsisting per se, whether the singular or the particular which is predicated of Christ is only one.
Unde possumus dicere, in Christo esse plura individua, vel singularia, vel particularia: non autem possumus dicere, Christum esse plura individua vel singularia vel particularia. Sed plures hypostases vel supposita non possumus dicere in Christo esse. Hence, we can say that there are many individuals or singulars or particulars in Christ, but we do not say that Christ is many individuals or singulars or particulars; but neither can we say that there are many hypostases or supposita in Christ.
Ad primum ergo dicendum, quod ex unione animae et corporis constituitur et homo et humanitas: quae quidem duo hoc modo differunt: quod humanitas significatur per modum partis, eo quod humanitas dicitur qua homo est homo, et sic praecise significat essentialia principia speciei, per quae hoc individuum in tali specie collocatur; unde se habet per modum partis, cum praeter huiusmodi principia multa alia in rebus naturae inveniantur. Sed homo significatur per modum totius: homo enim dicitur habens humanitatem, vel subsistens in humanitate, sine praecisione quorumcumque aliorum supervenientium essentialibus principiis speciei; quia per hoc quod dico: habens humanitatem; non praeciditur, qui habet colorem, et quantitatem, et alia huiusmodi.1. From the union of the soul and the body both a man and humanity are established, in fact these two differ in this way, that humanity is signified through the manner of a part, insofar as humanity is called that by which a man is a man, and thus it signifies precisely the essential principles of the species through which this individual is placed in such a species, hence it has the status of a part, since beyond principles of this kind many others are found in things of nature. But, a man is signified through the manner of a whole: for a man is spoken of [as] having humanity or subsisting in humanity, without the exclusion of any other supervening things in the essential principles of the species. Due to this fact I say that 'having humanity' is not cut off [from] having colour and quality and other things of this kind.
Secundum ergo secundam opinionem praedictam, unioni humanae naturae ad divinam praesupponitur unio animae et corporis secundum quod constituit humanitatem, non secundum quod constituit hominem. Illud enim quod in Christo est constitutum ex anima et corpore tantum, quod unioni praesupponitur, non est totum quod per se subsistit, sed aliquid eius; et ideo non potest signari ut homo, sed ut humanitas. Unde oportet dicere, quod in ipsa unione humanae naturae ad divinam quasi in termino assumptionis, intelligatur primo in Christo ratio hominis, quia tunc primo intelligitur ut res per se subsistens completa. et in hoc differt ab aliis duabus opinionibus. Therefore, according to the second opinion stated above [i.e. as listed in Peter Lombard], the union of the soul and the body is presupposed to the union of the human nature to the divine insofar as it establishes humanity, but not insofar as it establishes a man. For that which was established in Christ from the soul and body alone, which is presupposed to the union, is not a whole which subsists per se, but it is some [part] of him and thus it is not able to be signified as a man, but as humanity. Hence, it is necessary to say that in the union of the human nature to the divine the character [ratio] of a man is understood first in Christ as if in the term of the assumption, since it is then primarily understood as a completed thing existing per se. And it differs from the other two opinions in this.
Nam prima opinio ponit, quod unio animae ad carnem praesupponitur secundum intellectum assumptioni humanae naturae, non secundum solum hoc quod constituit humanitatem, sed etiam secundum quod constituit hominem; dicit enim hominem esse assumptum. For the first opinion posits that a union of the soul to the flesh is presupposed according to the understanding of an assumption of human nature, not only insofar as it establishes humanity, but also insofar as it establishes a man: for it says that a man was assumed.
Tertia vero opinio ponit, quod nec etiam in termino assumptionis intelligitur anima corpori unita, nec ad constituendum hominem, nec ad constituendam humanam naturam; dicit enim humanam naturam sumi multipliciter, idest pro partibus eius, scilicet anima et corpore, cum dicamus, humanam naturam assumptam a Verbo: unde patet quod nec vere dicit Christum esse hominem, nec vere ponit humanam naturam in Christo: et ideo est tamquam haeretica condemnata. Now, the third opinion posits that the soul united to the body is not understood even in the completion , neither for constituting a man nor for consituting a human nature: for it says that human nature is taken materially, i.e. for its parts, namely, a soul and a body, when we say that the human nature was assumed by the Word. Hence it is obvious that this opinion posits that Christ is neither true man nor does it truly posit a human nature in him, and the same opinion was condemned as heretical.
Ad secundum dicendum, quod corpus unitum animae praeintelligitur assumptioni humanae
naturae: unitum autem dico unione constituente humanitatem, non autem unione constituente hominem.
2. The body united to the soul is presupposed to the assumption of human nature, but I say that it was united by the union constituting humanity, but not by the union constituting a man.
Ad tertium dicendum, quod gratia habitualis non intelligitur ut medium unionis, quod secundum intellectum praecedit unionem: nec est medium quod causet unionem vel unibilitatem: sed medium quod facit ad congruitatem unionis, sicut decora vestis facit ad congruitatem coniunctionis matrimonialis. Et similiter scientia et omnes aliae perfectiones Christi possent dici medium unionis; et pro tanto gratia habitualis Christi potest dici gratia unionis. Verius tamen puto, quod gratia unionis dicatur vel ipsa gratuita Dei voluntas, quae gratis, nullis meritis praecedentibus, unionem fecit; vel potius ipsum donum gratis datum humanae naturae, quod est esse in divina persona. Si tamen anima unita corpori praeintelligitur ad assumptionem, solvendum est ut prius. 3. Habitual grace is not understood as the medium of the union which according to the understanding of it precedes the union: for it is not such a medium that causes the union or unitability, but a medium which produces suitability of the union, just as suitable clothing makes for the suitability of matrimonial joining (and similarly the knowledge and all other perfections of Christ can be called the medium of the union) and because of all that Christ's habitual grace can be called the grace of union. Yet I think that it is more truly said that the grace of union refers either to the gratuitous will of God which freely produced the union, that is with no preceding merits, or it refers to a gift freely given (donum gratis datum) to human nature, namely, to be in the divine person. Yet, if the soul united to the body is presupposed to the assumption, it must be solved in the same way as before.
Ad quartum dicendum, quod humanitas non est forma partis quae dicatur forma quia informet aliquam materiam vel subiectum; sed dicitur forma totius, in qua suppositum naturae subsistit; unde non oportet ponere quod hypostasis increata informetur humanitate, sed quod subsistit in ea. 4. Humanity is not the form of a part which is called a form because it informs some matter or subject, but it is called the form of a whole, in which a nature's suppositum subsists; hence it is not necessary to posit that the uncreated hypostasis is informed by humanity, but that it subsists in it.

© Mr. Jason Lewis Andrew West
(jason.west@newman.edu)



The Aquinas Translation Project
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