Eustathius of Antioch, St.
EUSTATHIUS OF ANTIOCH, ST.
Bishop and theologian; b. Side in Pamphylia; d. before 337. Eustathius (or Eustace) was bishop of Beroea in Syria before the Arian conflict, was transferred to the metropolitan See of Antioch (probably 324), and took part in and may even have presided at the Council of Nicaea (325). One of the first and most relentless opponents of Arianism, he was deposed and exiled (c. 331) to Trajanopolis in Thrace by Emperor constantine; there is no evidence of his return. Some friends, uncompromising Nicaeans, formed a Eustathian faction that survived as a separate group until 482–485. Of his many works 20 titles are known. Extant are one complete exegetical treatise, On the Witch of Endor against Origen, and some hundred fragments. His most important work seems to have been Adversus Arianos, in at least eight books. Eustathius's Trinitarian theology implies, between God and the Word, a relation of Father to Son. His Christology lays strong stress on the distinction and integrity of the two natures in Christ against the Arians. He was the first to attempt a Logos-Man Christology against the prevalent Logos-Sarx doctrine, and it is in his opposition to the latter theory that he merits a significant place in the history of doctrine. He was not a forerunner of nestorius, for his soteriology and certain nuances of his Christology demand a unicity of person in Christ. In scriptural matters, he cites the Pentateuch and the Gospels in the so-called Lucian recension, denounces the abuses of allegorism, and gives a reasoned and realistic interpretation of the text. In doctrine as well as exegesis, Eustathius would seem to have been an authentic Antiochene.
Feast: July 16.
Bibliography: m. spanneut, ed., Recherches sur les écrits d'Eustathe d'Antioche (Lille 1948); Dictionnaire d'histoire et de géographie ecclésiastiques (Paris 1912–) 16:13–23. r. v. sellers, Eustathius of Antioch and His Place in the Early History of Christine Doctrine (Cambridge, Eng. 1928).