81 The meaning of this seems to be that the Anomoean party make the same charge of "inconsistency" against the orthodox, which Gregory makes against Eunomius, basing that charge on the fact that the title "Son" is not interpreted in the same figurative way as the other titles recited. Gregory accordingly proceeds to show why the name of "Son" stands on a different level from those titles, and is to be treated in a different way.
1 Reading, with the older editions, th qewria. Oehler substitutes thn qewpian (a variation which seems to give no good sense, unless qewria be translated as "subject of contemplation"), but alleges no ms. authority for the change.
5 The reference is to S. Basil's treatise against Eunomius (ii. 7-8; p. 242-4 in the Benedictine ed.). Oehler's punctuation is apparently wrong, for Gregory paraphrases not only the rule, but the reason given for it, from S. Basil, from whom the last words of the sentence are a direct quotation.
14 The argument appears to be this:-The Anomoeans assert, on the ground that He is created, that the Son's essence is trepton, liable to change; where there is the possibility of change, the nature must have a capacity of inclining one way or the other, according to the balance of will determining to which side the nature shall incline: and that this is the condition of the angels may be seen from the instance of the fallen angels, whose nature was inclined to evil by their proairesij. It follows that to say the Son is treptoj implies that He is on a level with the angelic nature, and might fall even as the angels fell.
15 Cf. Heb. i. 4, and foll. It is to be noted that Gregory connects palin in v. 6, with eisagagh, not treating it, as the A.V. does, as simply introducing another quotation. This appears from his later reference to the text
18 Cf. Col. i. 15. Prwtotokoj may be, as it is in the Authorized Version, translated either by "first born," or by "first-begotten." Compare with this passage Book II. §8, where the use of the word in Holy Scripture is discussed.
27 This interpretation is of course common to many of the Fathers, though S. Augustine, for instance, explains the "ninety and nine" otherwise, and his explanation has been often followed by modern writers and preachers. The present interpretation is assumed in a prayer, no doubt of great antiquity, which is found in the Liturgy of S. James, both in the Greek and the Syriac version, and also in the Greek form of the Coptic Liturgy of S. Basil, where it is said to be "from the Liturgy of S. James."
30 With this passage may be compared the parallel passage in Bk. II. §8. The interpretation of the "many brethren" of those baptized suggests that Gregory understood the "predestination" spoken of in Rom. viii. 29 to be predestination to baptism.
40 It is not quite clear whether any of this passage, or, if so, how much of it, is a direct quotation from Eunomius. Probably only the phrase about the imparting and receiving of the essence is taken from him, the rest of the passage being Gregory's expansion of the phrase into a distinction between the essence and the thing of which it is the essence, so that the thing can be viewed apart from its own essence.
42 This seems to be the force of akoinwnhton: it is clear from what follows that it is to be understood as denying community of essence between the Father and the Son, not as asserting only the unique character alike of the Son and of His relation to the Father.