Of God and His Creatures

Of the Opinion of Arius concerning the Son of God*

WHEREAS it is not in accordance with sacred doctrine to say, with Photinus, that the Son of God took His beginning from Mary; or, with Sabellius, that the eternal God and Father began to be the Son by taking flesh; there were others who took the view, which Scripture teaches, that the Son of God was before the Incarnation and even before the creation of the world; but because the Son is other than the Father, they accounted Him to be not of the same nature with the Father: for they could not understand, nor would they believe, that any two beings, distinct in person, had the same essence and nature. And because, according to the doctrine of faith, alone of natures the nature of God the Father is believed to be eternal, they believed that the nature of the Son was not from eternity, although the Son was before other creatures. And because all that is not eternal is made out of nothing and created by God, they declared that the Son of God was made out of nothing and is a creature. But because they were driven by the authority of Scripture to call the Son also God, they said that He was one with God the Father, not by nature, but by a union of wills, and by participation in the likeness of God beyond other creatures. Hence, as the highest creatures, the angels are called in Scripture 'gods' and 'sons of God,' -- e.g., Where werst thou, when the morning stars praised me, and all the sons of God shouted for joy? (Job xxxviii, 4-7): God stood in the assembly of gods (Ps. lxxxi, 1): -- they considered that He should be called 'Son of God' and 'God' pre-eminently above others, inasmuch as through Him the Father created every other creature.*

4.5 : Rejection of the Opinion of Sabellius concerning the Son of God
4.7 : Rejection of Arius's Position