“As Evangelicals we believe in ‘Enhypostatic Interfusion’ or Miaphytism in dealing with say John 15….
Essence and Energy are communicable – otherwise we would only be beholding christlikeness [energetic potentiality] and NOT be becoming Christlike [communicable and essential actuality].”
These are snippets of a comment posted on my blog. I have provided them to give some context to my response which I have included below. I am interested on obtaining some feed back regarding the response. Is it correct or wrong? Can it be improved? How?
I would appreciate any constructive comments and I think this matter is very much in line with the material in this blog and it underlies some of the discussions here.
The Essence of God is unknowable and incommunicable because it is uncreated and without beginning in time. The created cannot take on the nature [used interchangeably with essence for this argument] of the uncreated because it could only do so in time thus giving a beginning in time to the uncreated nature, thus contradicting the uncreated nature and it ceasing to be uncreated and without beginning. The Son of God could take on created nature in time because it can have a beginning but the reverse is not possible.
The Son of God has two natures in one person. The human nature remains created and fully human and it does not become uncreated. Nevertheless, it can be united without confusion to the Divine nature and share in the fullness of the life of the Divine nature. Christ’s human nature, although created, is no less Christ than His Divine nature. Thus, when we are united to Christ’s human nature we too share in the Divine nature in the same fullness as Christ’s human nature. We are truly Christlike. There is nothing in Christ’s humanity that we do not share in our own hypostasis. However, only the hypostasis of the Son of God can have two natures, we retain one nature, our human nature, but in Christ we participate in the divine nature in His human nature, through the energies of God in the Holy Spirit. Thus we share in omnipotence, omnipresence, omniscience and most importantly the Love of God. These are all ours as they are Christ’s. We live in the fullness of life as Christ does in His human nature; His life is our life.
The Fourth Ecumenical Council rejected monophysitism because it confused the human nature of Christ and His Divine nature. This means that we cannot participate in the Divine life without ceasing to be completely human or becoming God and so denying our salvation. Miaphysitism may be acceptable terminology only if one accepts the two nature teaching of Pope Leo and the Council.
Each hypostasis contains its nature completely within itself. Thus each of the Persons of the Trinity has the fullness of the nature/essence of God within itself. The nature is not shared between them. Each human person has human nature entirely within himself. One human is no less human than another and the human nature is not something outside each person that we somehow share. Rather it is whole and complete in each person.
To have the Divine nature is to have it whole and complete within our own hypostasis. Because it is not within our hypostasis presently, it must begin to be within our hypostasis at some point, if we are truly to have this nature, and this is the reason why we cannot have the Divine nature; it cannot begin in our hypostasis. Only the three hypostases of the Trinity, which are without beginning can have the divine nature within them. We cannot speak of the Divine essence outside of the hypostases of God and neither can we talk of it outside our own hypostases, if we could share in it.
To share in the Divine essence or to know it or for it to be communicated means to have it as our nature completely within our own hypostasis. Otherwise, what is meant, by partaking or sharing the Divine nature, is to share in the energies of the Divine essence, which we can do without having the Divine essence enhypostasised.