1 The allusion is to the recantation of Leporius and his companions. They were the immediate predecessors of Nestorius, and Cassian means to say that their recantation of their error ought to have been an example for Nestorius to follow.
4 The Nestorian controversy was originated by a sermon of Anastasius a follower of Theodore of Mopsuestia, whom Nestorius brought with him to Constantinople as his chaplain on his appointment as Archbishop, a.d.. 428. This man, preaching in the presence of the archbishop, said: "Let no one call Mary Theotocos; for Mary was tent a woman, and it is impossible that God should be born of a woman." In the controversy which was immediately excited by these words Nestorius at once took the part of his chaplain and preached a course of sermons in maintenance of his views; refusing to the Blessed Virgin the title of Theotocos, while admitting that she might be termed Christotocos. See Socrates H. E. Book VII.. c. xxxii. Evagrius H. E. Book I. c. ii. and Vincentius Lirinensis Book I. c. xvii. The sermons are still partially existing in the writings of Marius Mercator: and in the second of them the title Xoistoto/koj is admitted. Cf. Hefele's Councils Book IX. c. i. (Vol. iii. Eng. Transl. p. 12 sq.).
10 Petschenig's text is as follows: Videlicet ut, quia agi tanta res per humanum officium non valebat, ipsius ad futuram diceret majestatem in conceptu, qui erat futurus in partu; while Gazaeus reads deceret for diceret.
13 Here is an instance of language which the mature judgment of the Church has rejected, as experience showed how it was capable of being pressed into the service of heresy. Homo unitus Deo, in Cassian's mouth evidently means the manhood joined to the Godhead, but the words might easily be taken as implying that a man was united to God, i.e., that there were in the Incarnation two persons, one assuming and the other assumed, which was the essence of Nestorianism. Compare above, the note on Homo to Book I. c. v.
14 lsa. ix. 6 where in the LXX. B reads o#ti paidi/on h\mi=n, u9io\j kai\ e0do/qh h9mi=n, ou= h9 a0rxh\ e0genh/qh e0pi\ tou\ w!mou au0tou= ai\ kalei=ta TO o!noma au=tou= Mega/lhj Boulh=j a!ggeloj a!zw yap k. t. l. To this, however, )
and A add after a!ggeloj, qaumasto\j su/mbouloj Qeo\j (our Qeo\j A) i0sxuro\j e0cousiasth\j a!rxwn ei0rh/nhj path\r tou= me/llontoj a9w=noj and hence in the main comes the old Latin version, which Cassian here follows. Jerome's version has Parvulus enim natus est nobis et filius datus est nobis; et factus est principatus super humerum ejus: et vocabitur nomen ejus admirabilis consiliarius Dens fortis peter futuri saeculi princeps pacis. The Hebrew has nothing directly corresponding to the "angel of great counsel," which seems to be intended as a paraphrase of "Wonderful Counsellor" (Cf. Judg. xiii. 18), while "Father of the world to come" is an interpretation of the Hebrew "Father of eternity."
18 Malachi iii. 8. Jerome's rendering is almost identical "Si affiget homo Deum, quia vos configitis me," where the Douay version, strangely departs from the literal sense of the word and renders vaguely "afflict." It is clear however that it was intended to be understood literally, as it is here taken by Cassian as a direct prophecy of the Crucifixion. The LXX. has pterniei=. The Hebrew word, which is only found again in Prov. xxii. 23, appears to mean "defraud."
24 Jacobum. So Petschenig, after his authority. It is however an error on Cassian's part, as the words quoted were spoken not by S. James but by S. Peter. (The text of Gazaeus reads apparently with no authority Petrum.)
29 Nestorius maintained that "that which was formed in the womb of Mary was not God Himself . . . but because God dwells in him whom He has assumed, therefore also He who is assumed is called God because of Him who assumes Him. And it is not God who has suffered, but God was united with the crucified flesh." (Fragm. in Marius Mercator p. 789 sq. (ed. Migne.) Thus he made out that in Christ were two Persons, one assuming and the other assumed.
5 Petschenig's text reads as follows: Ac per hoc et illud ibi Qui est super omnia Deus, hoc dicit: non novimus jam Christum secundum carnem et hic: non novimus jam Christum secundum carnem, hoc ait: Qui est Deus benedictus in soecula. That of Gazaeus has: Ac per hoc et illud ibi qui est super omnia Deus: et hoc dicit, non novimus jam Christum secundum carnem: Quia es Deus benedictus in soecula.
6 The language used in the text by Cassian is scarcely defensible The whole tenour of the treatise shows clearly enough that his meaning is orthodox enough, and that he fully recognizes that the Human nature of Christ is still existing (See especially c. vi.): but the language used comes perilously near to Eutychianism, and might be taken to imply that the human nature had been absorbed in the Divine. Again in Book V. c. vii. he speaks of the Son of man "united to the Son of God" (Cf. also c. viii. ) language which taken by itself might seem to sanction Nestorianism, the very heresy against which Cassian himself is writing. These instances of inaccurate language, which a later writer would have carefully avoided, serve to show one great service which heresies did to the Church in making Churchmen write logikw/teron. Cf. Dorner, Doctrine of the Person of Christ, Vol. i. p. 458 (E. T.).