Adversus Praxeus (which was quite possibly written against Irenaeus, as Stuart G. Hall suggests) contains a highly detailed precis of Tertullian's own Subordinationist Christology. One might be tempted to say that it contains many similiarities with Arian Christology. In fact, it is virtually identical.
From Chapter 4 of Against Praxeas:
Look to it then, that it be not you rather who are destroying the Monarchy, when you overthrow the arrangement and dispensation of it, which has been constituted in just as many names as it has pleased God to employ.
But it remains so firm and stable in its own state, notwithstanding the introduction into it of the Trinity, that the Son actually has to restore it entire to the Father; even as the apostle says in his epistle, concerning the very end of all:
'When He shall have delivered up the kingdom to God, even the Father; for He must reign till He has put all enemies under His feet;'
following of course the words of the Psalm:
'Sit You on my right hand, until I make Your enemies Your footstool.'
'When, however, all things shall be subdued to Him, (with the exception of Him who did put all things under Him,) then shall the Son also Himself be subject to Him who put all things under Him, that God may be all in all.'
We thus see that the Son is no obstacle to the Monarchy, although it is now administered by the Son; because with the Son it is still in its own state, and with its own state will be restored to the Father by the Son. No one, therefore, will impair it, on account of admitting the Son (to it), since it is certain that it has been committed to Him by the Father, and by and by has to be again delivered up by Him to the Father.
Now, from this one passage of the epistle of the inspired apostle, we have been already able to show that the Father and the Son are two separate Persons, not only by the mention of their separate names as Father and the Son, but also by the fact that He who delivered up the kingdom, and He to whom it is delivered up -- and in like manner, He who subjected (all things), and He to whom they were subjected -- must necessarily be two different Beings.
"Two different Persons... two different Beings."
If a modern Trinitarian tried to suggest that the Father and the Son are two different beings as well as being two different persons, he would either be told that he didn't understand the Trinity at all. or condemned as a heretic. But here we have Tertullian affirming that the two are more than just different persons - they are different beings.
This despite his conflicting claim that the Father, Son and Holy Spirit comprise one God in three persons.
Edited by Evangelion, 10 December 2006 - 03:04 AM.