Dear Brother in Christ, Alexander:
You make a perfectly valid point. One of the definitive books on the topic of Chalcedon is by the Indian Orthodox scholar and priest, Fr. V.C. Samuel: The Council of Chalcedon Revisited. I have never finished this substantial and tedius book
but I read large sections of it. In it, Fr. Samuel describes Eutyches as and old, confused monk who's forte' just wasn't theology. Yet you are correct brother, Eutyches did indeed confess our Lord's consubstantiality with us. Allow me to share a few excerpts from the above mentioned text:
As his [written] confession was not accepted, Eutyches made an oral statement. 'Thus I believe,' he said, 'I worship the Father with the Son, and the Son with the Father, and the Holy Spirit with the Father and the Son. Concerning his coming in the flesh, I confess that it happened from the flesh of the Virgin, and that he became man perfetly for our salvation. Thus I confess in the presence of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and of your holiness.'
...The second part of the question was now pressed, and Eutyches tried to evade it. 'Till this day,' he said, 'I have not spoken of the body of our Lord that it was of the same substance with us. But I confess that the Virgin was consubstantial with us, and that our God became incarnate from her.' Basil of Seleucia commented that if the mother was consubatantial with us, he himself, being called the Son of Man, must be consubstantial with us. 'As you now say,' said Eutyches, 'I agreee in everything."
...Eutyches gave his reason for hesitating to affirm Christ's consubstantiality with us. 'I considered the body of Christ to be the body of God,' he said. 'I did not say that the body of God was the body of man. The body was human, and the Lord became incarnated from the Virgin. But since it was from the Virgin, if it would be permissible to say that it was consubstantial with us, I say it -except that he was God the Only Son, Lord of heaven and earth, who is master and king with the Father, and who is seated and prasied with him. For I do not deny that the Son was indeed consubstantial with God. I did not say this previously. I say this now, because your hoiness says it.' Flavian asked whether he was admitting it out of persuasion or out of a conviction that it was the truth. 'Till this hour,' answered Euthyes, 'I was afraid to say this.' Flavian reminded him that it was not any new idea but the teaching of the fathers. In this context Florentius asked Eutyches whether he affirmed Christ's consubstantiality with us and that he was 'of two natures after the union.' It is in answer to this unexpected question of the imperial officer that Eutyches made the famous statement: 'I confess that our Lord was from two natures before the union, but after the union I confess one nature.'
The discussion around the phrase 'consubstantial with us' shows that Eutyches was reluctant to use it, not becuase he denied the reality and perfection of Christ's manhood, not becuase he refused to admit his real birth from Mary, but because Christ for him was God incarnate. The manhood which God the Son asssumed in the incarnation was not the manhood of a man, but of God the Son who accepted on himself an incarnate state. In other words, Eutyches was trying in his own way to exclude a doctrine of two Sons, which he feared was implicit in the phrase. Even though as an old monk with inadequate theological training in theology, he was not able to spell out this idea properly, he may well have been groping to give expression to it. If indeed he was, he was concerned about affirming a teaching which was central to the teaching of both Chalcedonian and non-Chalcedonian traiditions.
In any case, the synod demanded that he 'ought to confess clealy the dogmas now read and to anathematize all who hold contrary views.' 'But I have not found them clearly in the scriptures,' said the old monk, 'nor have the fathers said all these things. So, if I anathematize, woe unto me that I condemn my fathers.' 'Let him be anathema,' cried the synod, Flavian, however hesitated and Eutyches made it clear that he would not pronounce any anathema. At this juncture Florentius insisted that Eutyches should affirm 'two natures' and 'consubstantial with us.' Now the monk answered: ''I have read the blessed Cyril, the holy fathers and the holy Athanasius. They speak of 'from two natures" as referring to the before of the union. As for after the union and the incarnation, they no longer affirm two natures but one.' Basil of Selucia said that if he did not admit two natures, he would be maintaining confusion and mixtures; and Florentius gave his ruling that he who did not affirm 'from two antures' and 'two natures' did not have the orthodox faith. The synod now stood up and said: 'That which comes from persusion is not faith. Many years to the emperors! To the orthodox emperors, many years! This faith of yours will triumph for ever, He who does not conform, why should he be persuaded?' As president of the synod, Flavian gave the verdict that Eutyches was a follower of Valentinus and Apollinarius. Thirty bishops and twenty-three archimandrites gave their signaturees to the decree (pgs. 50-52).
I think this account answers our question very clearly of what Eutyches confessed about our Lord's Nature. I hope you find this helpful. Thanks for helping me to remember this as well.
Trusting in Christ's 1st & 2nd Advent
Dn. Ghazar / Lazarus Der-Ghazarian,
Sub-Deacon, Armenian Orthodox Church, Eastern Diocese USA
"Light of Christ" Website: www.geocities.com/derghazar/