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Physis : World Creation  

Gregory of Nyssa : THE MAKING OF MAN

To Those Who Say, "If the Resurrection is a Thing Excellent and Good, How is It that It Has Not Happened Already, But is Hoped Far in Some Periods of Time?"

Patrologia Graeca 44.204-9  * Greek Fonts


Page 3

And this it seems to me the Divine apostle considered when he declared in his epistle to the Corinthians the sudden stoppage of time, and the change of the things that are now moving on back to the opposite end where he says, "Behold, I show you a mystery; we shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump." For when, as I suppose, the full complement of human nature has reached the limit of the pre-determined measure, because there is no longer anything to be made up in the way of increase to the number of souls, he teaches us that the change in existing things will take place in an instant of time, giving to that limit of time which has no parts or extension the names of "a moment," and "the twinkling of an eye"; so that it will no more be possible for one who reaches the verge of time (which is the last and extreme point, from the fact that nothing is lacking to the attainment of its extremity) to obtain by death this change which takes place at a fixed period, but only when the trumpet of the resurrection sounds, which awakens the dead, and transforms those who are left in life, after the likeness of those who have undergone the resurrection change, at once to incorruptibility; so that the weight of the flesh is no longer heavy, nor does its burden hold them down to earth, but they rise aloft through the air-for, "we shall be caught up," he tells us, "in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air; and so shall we ever be with the Lord."

Ὅ μοι δοκεῖ καὶ ὁ θεῖος Ἀπόστολος κατανοήσας͵ προειπεῖν διὰ τῆς πρὸς Κορινθίους ἐπιστολῆς τὴν αἰφνίδιον τοῦ χρόνου στάσιν καὶ τὴν εἰς τὸ ἔμπαλιν τῶν κινουμένων ἀνάλυσιν͵ ἐν οἷς φησιν, Ἰδοὺ μυστήριον ὑμῖν λέγω, πάντες μὲν οὐ κοιμηθησόμεθα͵ πάντες δὲ ἀλλαγησόμεθα͵ ἐν ἀτόμῳ͵ ἐν ῥιπῇ ὀφθαλμοῦ͵ ἐν τῇ ἐσχάτῃ σάλπιγγι. Τοῦ γὰρ πληρώματος͵ ὡς οἶμαι͵ τῆς ἀνθρωπίνης φύσεως κατὰ τὸ προγνωσθὲν μέτρον εἰς πέρας ἐλθόντος͵ διὰ τὸ μηκέτι λείπειν τῷ τῶν ψυχῶν ἀριθμῷ μηδὲν εἰς ἐπαύξησιν͵ ἐν ἀκαρεῖ τοῦ χρόνου γενήσεσθαι τὴν ἐναλλαγὴν τῶν ὄντων ἐδίδαξεν͵ ἄτομον ὀνομάσας καὶ ῥιπὴν ὀφθαλμοῦ τὸ ἀμερὲς ἐκεῖνο [208] τοῦ χρόνου καὶ ἀδιάστατον πέρας ὡς μηκέτι δυνατὸν εἶναι τῷ κατὰ τὸ ἔσχατόν τε καὶ ἀκρότατον τῆς ἀκμῆς ἐπιβάντι τοῦ χρόνου͵ διὰ τὸ μηδὲν ὑπολείπεσθαι τῇ ἀκρότητι μέρος͵ τὴν περιοδικὴν ταύτην διὰ θανάτου μεταβολὴν κτήσασθαι͵ ἀλλ' εἰ μόνον ἠχήσειεν ἡ τῆς ἀναστάσεως σάλπιγξ͵ ἡ τὸ τεθνηκὸς ἀφυπνίζουσα καὶ τοὺς ἐν τῇ ζωῇ καταλειφθέντας καθ' ὁμοιότητα τῶν ἐξ ἀναστάσεως ἀλλοιουμένων πρὸς ἀφθαρσίαν ἀθρόως μεταβάλλουσα͵ ὡς μηκέτι τὸ βάρος τῆς σαρκὸς ἐπὶ τὸ κάτω βρίθειν καὶ τῇ γῇ παρακατέχειν τὸν ὄγκον, ἀλλὰ μετάρσιον δι' ἀέρος φοιτᾷν. Ἁρπαγησόμεθα γάρ͵ φησίν͵ ἐν νεφέλαις εἰς ἀπάντησιν τοῦ Κυρίου εἰς ἀέρα͵ καὶ οὕτως πάντοτε σὺν Κυρίῳ ἐσόμεθα.

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