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Ferdinand Christian Baur.

Paul, the apostle of Jesus Christ: his life and work, his epistles ..., Volume 2 online

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TTpo^ ^TtfTfiov TTJ^ yvtixreo)^ TTj^ Sofi79 Tov 0€ov €v trpoaom'tif
^Iijaov XpioTov, to make clear the knowledge of the glorious light
reflected from the face of Christ as it was once reflected from the
face of Moses. Christ is himself the image of God, and as the
glory of God is reflected in him, so it. is reflected again from him
in the gospel (evarfyikiov 7^9 Sofi;? tov Xpurrov), the knowledge
of which produces a bright light in the man who receives it, 2
Cor. iv. 4. Thus we see distinctly that Christ is related as he is
to God just because he is essentially spirit; it belongs to the
spiritual light-nature of God to reflect itself in something outward,
and thus, as Christ is to Twevfia he is also Kvpux: t^9 80^179, essen-
tially spirit and light. And he is this ndt only in consequence of
his exaltation, but essentially and originally. His exaltation
brought about the full realization of what he was already, what
had not been visible when he was crucified by the ap^ovre^ tov
tediTfiov. But though thus the Kvpia: t^ &>^9> he is also essen-
tially man, — ^the pneumatical, heavenly man. The apostle thus
appears to have conceived of Christ's pre-existent personality as
the spiritual luminous figure of the archetypal man. And here a
further question is suggested : what are the relations between this
ideal first man and the historical first man, Adam ? On one side
they are far asunder ; on another side they bear a relation to each
other, which is analogous to the relation between God and Christ
The passage 1 Cor. xi. 3 may give us some insight into the apostle's
pecidiar ways of thinking here. It is said there that the head of
the man is Christ, that the head of the woman is the man, that the
hea^ of Christ is God. The man is the eheiiv fctu So^a Qeov, the
woman is the So^ the luminous reflex, of the man. From this
point of view it seems that the first man can be nothing but the
reflex and the likeness of the archetypal man, of Christ. There is
however this mighty difference between the two, that the one is
merely earthly and psychical, while the other is heavenly and
spiritual The apostle does not indicate further how this contrast
arose ; we may be certain, however, that he did not conceive that
Adam existed first in a state of perfection, and came to be what



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25a LIFE AND WORK OF PAUL. [Part III.

he was afterwards ; he says of him, speakiug of his essential nature,
that he was merely a -^i^ ?«^^ ^ Cor. xv. 45. The apostle
considers it according to the universal order of nature that the
psychical should be developed first in humanity, and then the
spiritual ; and if this was the case, then of course what Christ was
ideally, as the archetypal man, could not be realized in humanity
till after the period of the earthly, psychical man. Not till then
did God cause the archetypal man, the Kvpio^ So^, to enter into
humanity as his Son, his own Son, Gal iv. 4, Eom. viii 3, 32.
He entered into humanify as one ev o/iocd/juiTt aap/w dfiafrria^,
yevd/iepo^ he yvvaiKo<:, — predicates which agree very weU with the
conception of the person of Christ which we have arrived at
abova It has been said, and with great justice, that the stress
here laid upon the circumstances that the, Son of God had a human
body and was bom of a woman, clearly shows the writer to have
regarded his personality as not inseparable from a human body, as
in the case of other men ; while it certainly shows at the same
time that he considered Christ to have existed in such a body
before his appearance in the world.* The apostle's view can
scarcely have been any other than this, that Christ existed already
subjectively for himself, and was invested with a ofioitofui a-apicix;
dfuifyria^, at the time when he appeared as a man, and in order
that be might so appear. The view would thus be the same as
that expressed in the second Epistle of Clemens Eomanus to the
Corinthians, chap. viiL, with the simple words, o Kvpiof; &v fiev to
irpSnov TTveiffjLa, eyevero aap^. This view is strictly consistent
with the monotheism of Judaism, and differs radically from the
Johannine view. The pre-existing subject is not the 7<jdyo<;, Oeo^,
but the irvevfia, Christ, who, as the /cvpLo^ ^^> is the wevfuit
2 Cor. iii 17. Now though Christ appeared only in a ofioia^fia
aapKo^ dfiapTid<;, yet his appearance in the aap^ makes him
really and perfectly a man. There is nothing to suggest a super-
natural origin ; on the contrary, the apostle seems to exclude such
an idea when he says that God sent his Son as one yeifd^iepov he
^ TheoL Jahrb. 1842, p. 68.



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Chap. VIIL] DISCUSSION OF CERTAIN QUESTIONS. 251

ywcuKo^, Gal. iv. 4, or as one yepofievov €k <nr€pfuiTo<; ^a0lS
Kara adpKct, Bom. i 3. How the apostle reconciled the sinlessness
of Christ with his natural human generation we have no means of
deciding. It is certainly unnecessary to assert that the two can-
not possibly occur ii> one person ; this is an inference from the
doctrine of original sin, a doctrine of a later age and with which
Paul was unacquainted. With the apostle it is only through
actual sin that the aap^ becomes the seat of the dfiapruu

Thus it is through his human birth that Christ enters into
humanity as the Son of God. Over against the yeveaOcu he
<nripiiaro^ AaffiZ Kara aap/ca, however, the apostle places the
opurOfjvai vm Oeov €v Swdfiet Kara irvevfia arftaxrvvrj^ ef dvaard'
<r66)9 v€Kp&v. What this irvevfui dr/uaxrwr)^ denotes is a further
and somewhat obscure point in the Pauline Christology. As
being wpevfia, it must, as we have already remarked, be that
element in which the higher pre-existent personality of Christ
consists. The peculiar expression, irvev/ui drfmcvvrf;, with which
the 7rv€v/jLa is further defined, can only be explained by an accurate
examination of the passage Boul L 3, 4, where it is used. The
apostle is seeking to express the fulness of his faith in the Messi-
anic dignity of Christ at the outset of his Epistle by summing up
all the momenta that enter into that conception. Christ is the
Messiah in virtue of his being the son of David : to the Judaeo-
Christians at Home, this was the first and principal criterion. But
to the apostle a much more important criterion of his Messiah-
ship is his resurrection from the dead. What Christ is physically
as the son of David, he is spiritually through his resurrection ; this
is the spiritual credentials of his Messianic dignity, for this first
of all supplied an actual proof that the spirit which alone could
make him the Messiah was actually resident in him. And this is
the proper meaning of the wevfia dr^uaavvi]<:. Christians are
dyio^j because Christ himself is par eoccdlence the ayio^; ; and he
is the 0^(09 because he has in himself absoljately the irvevfui, the
trvevfia wyiov. The spirit is the principle in virtue of which
Christ is the Messiah, it is the immanent principle of his Messianic



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252 LIFE AND WORK OF PAUL. [Part III.

ofidce ; and the apostle calls this spirit, which is essential to the
Messiah, the Tivevfia dr/iaxrvvrf^. As being bom of the seed of
David he was the Messiah, the Son of God, according to the flesh ;
but he has been attested to be the Son of God in a powerful man*
ner (the apostle says ev Swdfjbei, either to mark the resurrection
as an act of the divine omnipotence, or to indicate that this alone
was the true and real attestation of Christ's Messiahship), by the
resurrection of the dead which took place in him in accordance
with the Messianic spirit indwelling in him. The irvevfia arfia^
avvTf^ is thus simply the Messianic spirit, and would not by itself
be any proof of pre-existenca We have not, however, to regard
it by itself, but in its connexion with the other momenta we have
been discussing. The Trvevfia aryuoavinf^ presupposes the Trveu/uif
in which Christ's personality is broadly said to consist

We have thus three momenta in which the personality of Christ
is defined : 1. Christ is essentially and substantially spirit, 6 Kvpuy$
TO TTvevfui eariv, 2 Cor. iii 17, i^. spirit absolutely, as God him-
self is essentially spiiit. This spiritual nature of Christ necessarily
implies the idea of pre-existence. 2. In Christ's appearance in
humanity, irvevfia, the essential element of his personality, assumes
the form of the Messianic spirit ; it is the frvevfia (vyuoavviys. 3.
The resurrection proves Christ to be the Son of God in the highest
sense ; at this point the irvev/ui dyuoavvfy: asserts itself in its full
power and significance as the trvevfia ^oxyiroiovp, 1 Cor. xv. 45.
What the irv€Vfia d^Kaavvrf^ is for Christ's own person, the Trvevfua
^oHmoiovp is for humanity ; it is the life-principle that works in
humanity, makes an end of sin and death, and raises the mortal
aap^ to the glorious image of the heavenly man. All that he is as
TO TTvev/juiy as the Kvpio^ rfj/^ ^^9> the icvpto^ e^ ovpavov, the encanf
Tov 0€ov, the wvevfuiTiKo^ eirovpopto^ dvOptawo^, as the archetypal
man in whom the image of God resides and is displayed, all this is
introduced into humanity by his coming in the ofLom/ui aapKo^
dpLoprla^y to kill and to destroy the aap^. And all this that
he is, is accomplished and realized in humanity when the whole of
humanity is formed after his image. For those who become the



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Chap, VIIL] DISCUSSION OF CERTAIN QUESTIONS. 253

children of God through the spirit of God or the spirit of Christ,
them God wpocopure avfifjLop<f>ov^ t^9 €i,kovo^ tov vlov avrov, 6(9
TO etvac airrov irptorJroKov ev ttoWoI? aZeK^ohy Eom. viii. 29. It
is an essential thought of the Pauline Christology that Christ is the
image of God. This image of God, which he wears in his spiritual
light-nature, prefigures the unity of God and man. Christ is essen-
tially man ; but as the archetypal, spiritual, heavenly man, he is also
the God-man, or the Son of God, the thvof; vm Qeov. Sut tlie
apostle never calls him simply God. This characteristic of the
Pauline Christology shows us how strictly Jewish its conceptions
are. The apostle has nowhere ignored the barrier which separates
the Son of God from God, on the contrary, he holds fast to the
position that Christ is essentially and substantially man. He is
at the same time to irvevfia, the spiritual man untainted by sin.
Thus he is the ideal and archetypal man, and in this sense the
Kvpio<: Tfj<: So^<;}

4. The doctrine of angels and demons.

In the Epistles of which we take account in this inquiry, the
apostle speaks very little of angels, and where he does speak of
them it is not with any dogmatic intention, but only by way of
illustration, and proverbially : Eom. viii 38, 1 Cor. vi. 3, iv. 9, xiii
1 ; GaL i. 8, iv. 14 sq. We notice especially that he does not even
mention the relation of the angels to Christ, as is the case in the
Epistle to the Hebrews, where the higher dignity of Christ is
defined by his relation to the angels. This lay outside of the
apostle's sphere of vision ; Christ, though he be the Kvpuy; 7^9
^^, is yet with him too essentially a man to be thought of in
such relations. The apostle's ideas about the angels are altogether
vague ; to him they are certain superior superhuman beings stand-
ing between God and the world of human lifa He even assumes,
in accordance with the later and especially Alexandrine tradition,
that the law was given through the angels ; but this merely proved
to him that the Mosaic legislation was of a subordinate character.

^ The Vorlesongen fiber neutest. Theologie, pp. 186-195, agree in the main
with the above discusaion.. .



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254 LIFE AND WORK OF PAUL. [Part III.

It would hardly be worth while to make special mention of the
apostle's angelology were it not for one passage in his Epistles, from
which it might appear that he laid greater stress upon this doctrine
than his other expressions on the subject would lead us to expect.
I mean the passage 1 Cor. xi 10. Here the apostle is admonish-
ing the Corinthian women not to let themselves be seen with
uncovered head, and for this he gives a reason : For this cause
ought the woman to have a sign of the power (not of the power
which she has, but of the power which her husband has over her ;
this is unquestionably the meaning of e^vala) upon her head,
because of the angels. Women are thus to wear a veil because of
the angels ; but why, what is the connexion between the one thing
and the other ? Different explanations have been advanced, but
they are all alike unsatisfactory. An attentive consideration of
the contents and connexion of the passage can lead us to but one
conclusion : that as the words Sea rov^ arfyeKov^ cannot possibly
have arisen out of anything in the apostle's own religious conscious-
ness, they cannot be considered to be part of the original text.
Observe how unconnected these words are here, and how they
destroy the sense. The apostle's main proposition is this: the
woman must wear a veil as a sign of her subjection to the man,
for she is, as the apostle explains, cf avSp6<: and Sia rov avhpa.
Therefore o^etKei f) yxmj i^ovalav €)(€t,p. It is clear that Sui
TovTo refers to what goes before ; so far the argument is clear.
But how is it interrupted and confused if Sui tov9 cuyyeT^i^' be
added, as if a parallel to Bia tovto ? The reason given before was
quite sufficient; there is no place for this new and foreign reason,
a thing to which not the slightest reference is made either in what
precedes or in what foUows. Our apostle is not such a writer as
could destroy the logic of his argument with such an awkward
interpolation. The sense most probably to be attributed to these
detached and isolated words suggests to us that they were originally
a gloss on the text. An early Christian, such a one as was much
occupied with Jewish representations, might imagine, what the
apostle Paul himself could never imagine, that the veiling of



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Chap. VIIL] DISCUSSION OF CERTAIN QUESTIONS, 255

women was advisable as a precaution against what had once hap-
pened to the angels before, Gen. vL 1. Or he may have thought
that the custom of women's wearing veils had been instituted as a
memento of that occurrence, and for a standing admonition. The
words Bia tov9 arfftKov^ were added as a gloss to indicate this view,
and were then taken up into the text without regard to their ejBfect
on the sensa The view we have indicated was actually current
during the early centuries ; we find it actually applied to impress
upon women that their head-dress should be such as to give no
occasion for unchaste desires. This appears most clearly from a
passage in the Testament of the twelve patriarchs, in the Testament
of Eubens, chap v. : irpooToaa-ere rah yxwac^lv v/jl&v kcu rai^
Ovyarpdavv, wa fjuq Koa-fuovrat, ra^ K€(f>a\a^ kov ra^ oy^ei,^ avr&v
ovT(o ycip €0€\^av tov9 eyprjydpov^ (the angels as guardian spirits)
irpio Tov /caTaKkuafiov} A Christian who was acquainted with
these views would very naturally be led to think of them in con-
nexion with this passage. To dispense with the veil he would
think was to hold out one of the most dangerous of all temp-
tations. Both of these considerations, then, the isolated position
of the words, and the probability of their having originated in
a gloss, make us hesitate to ascribe such a view to the apostle. He
may have held a view like this, but never as a thing of such
importance.

With regard to demons, the point we have to consider is how
the apostle conceived them to be related to the heathen deities.
The question arises in two passages : 1 Cor. viii 4-6, and x. 19-21.

^ Gf. TertuUian, De VeUndiB Virg., a 7 : Si propter angelos Bcilioet qnos
legimns a Deo et coelo excidisBe ob concnpiBcentiam feminamm, qais praesnmere
potest, tales angelos maculata jam corpora et humanae libidinis reliquia deside-
rasse, ut non ad viigines potias exarserint quarnm flos etiam humanam libidinem
excosat. Debet ergo adnmbrari facies tarn pericolosa, quae etiam ad ooelam
scandala jaculata est, at com Deo adsistens, cai rea est angeloram extermina-
torum, caeteris quoque angelis erubescat, et malam iUam aUquando libertatem
capitis sui comprimat, jam nee hominum ocnlis offerendam. C. 17: Nobis
dominos etiam revelationibiis velaminis spatia metatas est. Nam coidam sorori
nostri angelus in sonmis cervices, quasi applauderet verberans, elegantes, inqoit
cervices, et merito nudae. Bonam est usque ad lumbos a capite veleris, ne et
tibi ista cervicum libertas non prosit.



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256 LIFE AND WORK OF PAUL, [Part IIL

The first passage has greatly perplexed the interpreters. Eiickert
thinks it most likely that the apostle does not admit with regard
to the idols of the heathen that they are truly gods, but does admit
that there are many other beings of higher than human nature, and
that these possess a certain power over men and over the inanimate
world, in virtue of which power they may be called icvpioh aiid even
060*, though destitute of any proper title to be worshipped by men
as OeoL The apostle, Stickert thinks, actually assumed the exist-
ence of such beings as angels and demons. But he does not speak
of angels and demons ; he speaks of Qeoi and tcvpio^. And he
denies that they have any objective existence — as the argument
and the idea of the passage distinctly prove. His immediate
object is to represent the eating of meat offered to idols as a thing
entirely indifferent There are no idols, he says ; an eiSmKov is
a thing that has no reality in the world Such gods as those of
the heathens do not exist at all; there is only one Ood For
though there be so-called gods in heaven and on earth, as people
talk of gods in the plural and believe in them, as in this sense
there are many gods and many lords, yet for us, to our religious
consciousness as Christians, there is only one Qod and only one
Lord. There can be nothing clearer than that the apostle makes
the existence of the heathen gods a matter of mere Xeyea-Oa^ ;
allows their existence only in so far as they are represented and
spoken of after the manner of polytheism as gods really existing.
They are Oeol and /cvpio^ not really, but only to the imagination.
We have to remark, however, on the other hand, that the reality
and objective existence of the heathen gods is denied only in so far
as it is claimed for them that they are deol and tcvpioi, gods pro-
perly so called. This does not exclude the supposition that these
beings who have no real existence as gods do yet exist actually and
objectively not as gods but as demons. This is the apostle's posi-
tion in the second passage. Here he takes up the other side of the
question. His former assertion that an elStaiKov is nothing, and
that therefore neither is an eiZcoXdOurov any true elScoXoOvrov (for
nothing can be offered to an idol which has no existence), is not



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Chap. VIIL] DISCUSSION OF CERTAIN QUESTIONS. 257

recalled but modified and supplemented by a further statement,
riiis is, that what the heathens ojBfer they oflfer to demons and not
to God, and that one cannot therefore partake in the heathen sacri-
ficial feasts without coming into communion with demons. For it
is from the nature of the case impossible — it is a contradiction — ^to
drink the cup of the Lord and at the same time the cup of demons ;
to partake of the Lord's table and at the same time of the table of
demons ; to practise religious rites which connect us with beings of
entirely opposite natures. Thus the apostle appears to have held
the view which afterwards became so general, that heathenism was
the empire of demons, and essentially demoniacal With the
apostle, however, the view has two sides : on the one side heathen-
ism is demoniacal, on the other it does not deal with realities at
all, it is a mere matter of imagination.^ But the one element of
heathenism caimot be separated from the other. The apostle
r^ards the relation of heathenism to Christianity as one of absolute
contradiction, not only in the subjective sense that one who has

^ What Neander says (Planting and Training, L 243 and 511) on the two pas-
sages under discussion is in part indefinite, and in part manifestly erroneous.
In the passage viii. 5 he thinks the apostle is merely contrasting two different
subjective standpoints, and that there is nothing said of the relations these bear
to the objective. What is spoken of here, however, is not two subjective stand-
points, but the subjective nature of polytheism, whose gods are merely imagined
gods, and the objective nature of Christian monotheism. On the passage z. 20
Neander says, *' verse 20 is to be interpreted in the light of the preceding verse. If
we admitted that Paul described the heathen deities as evU spirits, then we should
need to suppose that he wished to guard against that misunderstanding to which
the previous comparison might have given rise, that he really acknowledged their
divinities to be divine. But this is inconceivable. On the other hand, his words
might be understood in such a way as if he considered these divinities to be real
beings (though evil spirits), and hence ascribed objective importance to what was
offered to them. To correct this mistake he says now, that he is speaking only
of what the heathens believed subjectively from their own standpoint, which
was the opposite of the Christian, that those beings to whom they sacrificed were
batfiovuL in the Hellenic sense of the term." How misty, how mistaken ! What
business have the 8cufi6vui in the Hellenic sense here ? The apostle means demons
in the ordinary Jewish sense, and he says clearly enough that he holds them to be
the beings to whom the heathens sacrifice. The matter becomes intelligible at once
when we admit the light of the apostle's simple distinction. He denied the
existence of the heathen gods as gods or idols [clbcaXov is a supposititious god) : he
had room, however, for the assumption that they were evil spirits.



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258 LIFE AND WORK OF PAUL. [Part III.

become a Christian cannot be a heathen at the same time, but
objectively. The two are related to each other as the false
religion and the trua For what fellowship has righteousness with
unrighteousness, or light with darkness, and what concord has
Christ with Belial, etc. ? 2 Cor. vi 14.

5. The doctrine of the divine predestination.

With the apostle everything runs up into the absolute idea of
God ; this is his favourite point of view for every subject he may
be considering. And thus he deduces the salvation of man, from
its first beginning to its final accomplishment, from a decree passed
by God on the case of each individual. We know, he says, Eom.
viii 28, that all things work together for good to them that love
God, to those who are caUed in accordance with a decree which
he has passed. For those whom he foreknew (fixed in his con-
sciousness as objects of knowledge), them he also predestinated
to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the
first-bom among many brethren; and those whom he predes-
tinated, them he also called ; and whom he called, them he also
justified ; and whom he justified, them he also glorified. Here the
apostle makes it as clear as possible, that in the first beginning,
which he places in the divine decree, the whole series of the sub-
sequent stages was contained, which proceed by necessary sequence
one out of the other. The first stage, the being foreknown, implies
the last, the being glorified into the image of Christ, as its natural
and necessary consequence. So soon as the divine decree has been
arrived at, the process, the objective realization of the idea, moves
forward by logical necessity. The subjective element in the
realization is not, however, excluded, for as it was said before, it is
only those who love God who can be the objects of his decree. In
the ninth chapter of the Epistle to the Bomans, on the other hand,
we seem to find the idea of an absolute predestination. Here,
however, everything depends, as we have already indicated, on a
proper apprehension of the position which this chapter and the
doctrine it contains occupy in regard to the whole system. The
apostle is dealing with the different aspects in which the relation



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Chap. VIIL] DISCCTSSION OF CERTAIN QUESTIONS. 259

of Israel to the kingdom of God, or the benefits of Christianity, is



Online LibraryFerdinand Christian BaurPaul, the apostle of Jesus Christ: his life and work, his epistles ..., Volume 2 → online text (page 25 of 35)