St. Philoxenos on The Eucharist

Speaking about our access to God through the Eucharist, St. Philoxenos teaches,

“It became His own flesh which He took from us and not that of another man who is considered separate from Him.

For this reason also, we confess that we take the living body of the living God, and not the simple body of a man who is mortal. And we receive the living blood of life in every holy sip and not the simple blood of a man subject to decay such as one of us—-as is thought by the heretics…. He called the bread, body and the wine, blood. It was not that of someone else but His very own. And who is it that says these things? He who, after a short while, was about to be crucified…. He whose side was pierced by the lance of the soldiers, and it is written that blood and water fell from it—baptism and at the same time atoning blood. For through water, baptism was indicated and through blood, the divine mysteries.” St. Philoxenos of Mabbug, Letter to the Monks of Senun (CSCO 231), 5-6.

For those not familiar with him, St. Philoxenos (Died 523) is an extremely important father among the Churches not adhering to Chalcedon. In the time after chalcedon he would further explicate and defend the non-chalcedonian confession as Orthodox and in line with the teachings of St. Cyril of Alexandria. He was also very friendly with those confessing Chalcedon, treating them more as brothers to be reconciled rather than heretics to be banished. Fortunately more of his writings are becoming accessible to us in English such as, The Discourses of Philoxenos of Mabbug: A New Translation and Introduction and some works studying him are available too, The Practical Christology of Philoxenos of Mabbug.

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