And that he might reconcile both unto God in one body by the cross, having slain the enmity thereby:
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Gregory of Nyssa
Taking up the enmity that had come between us and God on account of sins, “slaying it in himself,” as the apostle says (and sin is enmity), and becoming what we are, he joined the human to God again through himself. .
* And might reconcile them both in one body unto God through the Cross.
He says, not merely might reconcile, (καταλλάξῃ) but might reconcile thoroughly (ἀ ποκαταλλάξῃ ) indicating that heretofore human nature had been easily reconciled, as, e.g., in the case of the saints and before the time of the Law.
In one body, says he, and that His own, unto God. How is this effected? By Himself, he means, suffering the due penalty.
* Through the cross having slain the enmity thereby.
Nothing can be more decisive, nothing more expressive than these words. His death, says the Apostle, has slain the enmity. He has wounded and killed it, not by giving charge to another, nor by what He wrought only, but also by what He suffered. He does not say having dissolved, he does say having cancelled, but what is stronger than all, having slain, so that it never should rise again. How then is it that it does rise again? From our exceeding depravity. For as long as we abide in the body of Christ, as l...
No expression could be more authoritative or more emphatic. His death, he says, killed the enmity, wounded and destroyed it. He did not give the task to another. And he not only did the work but suffered for it. He did not say that he dissolved it; he did not say that he put an end to it, but he used the much more forceful expression: He killed! This shows that it need not ever rise again. How then does it rise again? From our great wickedness. So long as we remain in the body of Christ, so long as we are one with him it does not rise again but lies dead. . ...