Theodosius, the Trinity and the Pope

Discussion in 'History Forum' started by Ben Elohim, Feb 23, 2005.

  1. Ben Elohim

    Ben Elohim
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    In 380 A.D. Emperor Theodosius made a proclamation. From Nicea to 380 A.D. the Athanasians and Arians fought tooth and nail and the church went back and forth and back and forth between the two and even the emperors went back and forth between one belief and the other. In fact, the Arians almost won the day in the 360's. However, in 380 A.D. Theodosius came to power and proclaimed that everyone must follow a particular form of Christianity:

    1. The Nicene definition and an Athanasian form of belief.

    2. Submission to the Bishops of Rome and Alexandria.

    Indeed, this proclamation was made under threat. Anyone who would follow a different belief system could be killed.

    Whaddya think about that one? Just about as good as the Catholic church forcing Indians to be baptized for "their own good."

    Anyway, Theodosius also banned all the Arians from the empire, outlawed Arianism and installed pro-Nicean bishops in their place. I guess we can be pretty sure this was all God's doing eh? Anyway, the very next year we have the Council of Constantinople. And why did they have it? To "confirm" the Nicene creed. Kind of a foregone conclusion wouldn't you say? The only attendees to Theodosius' little charade here were the Nicean bishops he had installed. Yeah, these Nicene bishops sure did some real "confirming" the Nicene creed alrighty. I bet they really debated what they all already believed to all hours of the night.

    Not challenging any theology here but this is a rather shameful way of doing business isn't it?

    And our truth bending church historians had me believing for a long time that this issue was settled by a theological debate. Uh huh.
     
  2. Phillip

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    Quite a motivational tool, wasn't it?
     
  3. Matt Black

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    At the time it was necessay to avoid civil war between the religious factions within the Empire. Unfortunate, I guess, but a necessary evil; at least the 'right side' (TM) won, unlike in the post-imperial Germanic successor states...

    Yours in Christ

    Matt
     
  4. Bro. James

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    Contrary to the "Holy See", etal, the creeds of men are not part of the Word of God.

    "In vain ye do worship, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men."--Jesus to the Jews, circa A.D. 33.

    The Scripture is the only rule of faith and practice--"let God be found true, and every man a liar".

    Selah,

    Bro. James
     
  5. Matt Black

    Matt Black
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    As the JWs and Christadelphians, with their Arian heresy, fervently affirm ...er...which was what Nicaea, Constantinople I and Theodosius' decree were all about...

    Yours in Christ

    Matt
     
  6. Doubting Thomas

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    Just for completeness sake, you may want to mention the fact that some of the preceding Emperors were pro-Arian and favored Arian bishops while exiling orthodox bishops (ie Athanasius, five different times!). There were also pro-Arian synods.
     
  7. Bro. James

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    Christian Apologetics, Holy Fathers and such--

    Where in the scripture are we told to write and/or study creeds, apologetic discourses, papal bulls and other engagements outside the Holy Writ?

    We are told to,"Study to show approval unto God, a workman who need not be ashamed, rightly dividing the Word of Truth".

    We are told to "Reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine".

    We must give an account according to the Word of God--not the writings of men.

    Curious that when the scripture was translated into a common language--English, that certain translators were persecuted unto death--by those calling themselves Christian. See the life and death of William Tyndale.

    Selah,

    Bro. James
     
  8. Doubting Thomas

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    Where in scripture does it say we are not to write or study creeds or engage in apologetic discourses?

    Where in scripture does it say that all apostolic tradition would be eventually "inscripturated"?

    For that matter, where in the scriptures is the divinely inspired table of contents of what constitutes the Holy Writ?
     
  9. billwald

    billwald
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    An inerrant text is useless without an inerrant interpretation.
     
  10. Matt Black

    Matt Black
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    And who or what is qualified to give that interpretation?

    Yours in Christ

    Matt
     
  11. mioque

    mioque
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    A sidenote.

    Ben
    "Whaddya think about that one? Just about as good as the Catholic church forcing Indians to be baptized for "their own good.""
    "
    Which was a definite improvement over the :"They are demons in human flesh and must be exterminated" school of thought that was current among many of the English speaking GenevaBible reading non-Roman Catholic Christians living in North-America at the time.
     
  12. Bro. James

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    Adding and subtracting scripture--

    Rev. 22:18, "For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book; 19: And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book."

    Where would council decrees, papal bulls, Book of Mormon, etc., fit into the above warning?

    Nothing man has ever written or spoken has even begun to approach being on the same level as the infallible Word of God.

    To use secular writings to understand Holy Writ is an exercise in futility. Jesus told Nicodemus, a master of Israel: "You must be born again."

    In as much as the scripture is "spiritually discerned", I submit that no unregenerated person can understand nor teach The Word without being "born again".

    Selah,(selah=pause,and reflect)

    Bro. James
     
  13. Matt Black

    Matt Black
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    And this answers my question how, exactly?

    Yours in Christ

    Matt
     
  14. Bro. James

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    Not sure about Your question, Bro. Matthew--the post is aimed mostly at Bro. Thomas--the Doubter's questions.

    Sorry if I am "kibbitzing".

    Selah,

    Bro. James
     
  15. Matt Black

    Matt Black
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    Sorry, my misunderstanding - I thought you were answering my question to Billwald

    Yours in Christ

    Matt
     
  16. Doubting Thomas

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    And the "book" being discussed here is the Revelation to John. But as other non-canonical books also had this warning of "adding and subtracting" how to we know Revelation should even be in the canon and the others shouldn't? Afterall, historically Revelation seems to be the last book universally agreed upon as belonging in the canon.

    (Selah)

    Nowhere, since none are adding to or subtracting from the Revelation of John.

    (Selah)

    This is true since the infallible Word of God is Christ Himself.

    (Selah)

    (Selah some more)

    I'm not talking about secular writings. I'm talking about writings of the CHURCH.

    (Selah)

    But there are a lot of folks out there who claim to be born again believers and who have diametrically opposed interpretations on some key issues. How does one decide which is the true "spiritually discerned" interpretation without begging the question? Does the Spirit contradict Himself?

    (Selah for a long time)
     
  17. Matt Black

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    Amen to that! (Billwald, the silence is golden...and telling)

    Yours in Christ

    Matt
     
  18. Melanie

    Melanie
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    I read Ben's thread starter with my jaw dropped up on the floor. I fail to see your point Ben, it seems to me and please enlighten me if necessary that you endorse the Arian view which held sway for almost 3 centuries and Bishop Athanasius and the rump end of the Catholic Church hung onto the old fashioned and mocked view that Jesus Christ is the Son of God that He has a Divine Nature and a Human Nature.

    The denial of the Jesus's Divinity is an attack at the core of Christian and Catholic belief. To deny this is simple heresy in my book.

    Athanasius stood firm whilst the modernists (of the time) stripped a central mystery of Faith.

    And yes Ben, I recite the Nicene Creed every day in my prayers which is a summation of the catholicism that I embrace.
     
  19. Bro. James

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    "How is one born again? By re-entering his mother's womb?"--a paraphrase of Rabbi Nicodemus, circa A.D. 33; Gospel of John, 3:4, KJV.

    These are the perplexing questions of a Master of Religion--who is without spiritual discernment.

    Being "born from above" is the only way to be saved--it has absolutely nothing to do with joining a "church" or doing other "good deeds" daily. "For by grace are you saved through faith, and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not of works, lest any man should boast." Eph. 2:8-9 KJV. (Says the same thing in the Douay-Confraternity--is it not amazing how God has preserved His Word?

    Yes, one could join every church in the world and still not get to heaven.

    Doubter: The Book of Revelation(The Unveiling) is The Revelation of Jesus Christ which He gave to the Apostle John on the Isle of Patmos. The Holy Spirit insured that we have a copy today--even in English--thank the Lord for William Tyndale, etal.

    Selah, (means pause and reflect; sorry if the word offends some--offense is not intended)

    Bro. James
     
  20. Doubting Thomas

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    But how do we know John's Revelation should be in the canon and that the Revelation of Peter should not be? Afterall, the latter was listed as part of the Muratorian Canon around AD 200. What about all the other apocalypses that claimed to be revelations from God?

    Also thank God for Athanasius who was the first to list all 27 books in the NT that we have today and whose influence led to the East finally accepting it into the canon. And thank God for Pope Damasus and the Councils of Carthage and Hippo that fixed the 27 book NT canon in the West (before that, Hebrews was usually omitted). And thank God the Holy Spirit most of all who led these churchmen to make the decisions that finally fixed the canon for the Church. Amen.

    (Selah)
     

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