Today is the feast of St. Basil the Great. Perhaps his greatest contribution to the Catholic Church was his work in defense of orthodoxy against Arianism – the heresy that said Jesus was not divine, that He did not share in the nature of God.
St. Gregory of Nanzianus is quoted as having said “What is not assumed is not redeemed”. This sums up the problem introduced by Arius and the danger it posed to our faith. St. Basil was instrumental among those who fought Arianism and laid the theological language for how we understand the complete humanity & complete divinity in the person of Christ.
Its interesting to me how often the heresy of Arianism comes up, even after the Church equipped us with the language and understanding of the hypostatic union. Consider the common secular trend of speaking of Jesus as a wise man, a man of peace – et cetera – but stripping Him of His divinity. Different context, same issue – and just as important.
Praise God for the saints! St. Basil, pray for us.
- Deacon Jacob Maurer