Tag Archives: Sabellianism

#340 – A History of the Catholic Church – New Rome

After an evaluation of Constantine’s Christianity, we look at the establishment of Constantinople and review earlier theological debates to prepare ourselves for the outbreak of the Arian Controversy.

Links:

Image of Mosaic of Constantine presenting Constantinople to Mary and Jesus

Constantine’s “Oration to the Saints”

Coins of Constantine from 312 and 318 showing Sol Invictus

Coins of Constantine from 315 showing the Chi Rho on the Constantine’s helm and from 327 showing the labarum

Map of Constantinople showing early walls of Septimus Severus and how Constantine expanded the size of the city. The map also shows Hagia Irene, where Constantine had the liturgy dedicating Constantinople, and Holy Apostles where Constantine will be buried.

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#340 – A History of the Catholic Church – New Rome

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#323 – A History of The Catholic Church – The Dionysii

dionysiusofrome

Different understandings about the nature of the relationship between the Father and the Son create new tensions for the Church as Sabellianism moves into Alexandria and causes problems both for Dionysius of Alexandria as well as Dionysius of Rome. Just as that issue is resolved, Paul of Samosata comes to Antioch.

Links:

Image: Bishop Dionysius of Rome by Mattana

Dionysius of Rome “Against the Sabellians”

Michael Slusser – “Saint Gregory Thaumaturgus”, Expository Times, Vol 120, No 12, pp. 573-585.

Daniëlle Slootjes. “Bishops and Their Position of Power in the Late Third Century CE: The Cases of Gregory Thaumaturgus and Paul of Samosata.” Journal of Late Antiquity 4, no. 1 (2011): 100-115.

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#323 – A History of the Catholic Church – The Dionysii

#307 – A History of the Catholic Church – Acquiring for you a holy people

hippolytus

Having examined some of the different theologies about the relationship of the Father and the Son in the last episode, now we look at how conflicts over these theologies affected the history of the Church – particularly in the life of Hippolytus who would be known as one of the most influential Fathers of the Church and the first antipope.

In his conflict with Pope Callistus I, we see how conflict over theology touched on the very life of Christian faithful and that even saints could find themselves on opposite sides not just on the nature of God, but also on the nature of the Church.

Links:

Image: Roman sculpture, thought to be Hippolytus.

Hippolytus’ Apostolic Tradition

Hippolytus’ Refutation of All Heresies – Book IX addresses his conflict with the Bishops of Rome

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#307 – A History of the Catholic Church – Acquiring for you a holy people

#306 – A History of the Catholic Church – Jesus Christ, Our God

trinity

Trying to find the right words and theology to describe the relationship of the Father and the Son was one of the most difficult and most important theological issues of the Early Church. Was the Son the same as the Father or different? Was the Son equal to or lesser than the Father? Could one present a theology that described what the Christian Church believed about Jesus and also remained faithful to the Tradition and Scripture?

In this episode, we look at several different ways that influential figures in the Early Church presented their views of this relationship: Adoptionism, Modalism, Logos Christology and the Trinitarian theology of Tertullian to see how different theologians wrestled with these problems and how they will influence the Church’s understanding of God.

Links:

Image: the earliest known depiction of the Trinity from the Dogmatic Sarcophagus 350 AD

Handy brief guides to the heresies we have been discussing and will be discussing in the future can be found here and here.

Examples from the Early Church Fathers describing Jesus as God

Justin Martyr’s First Apology that presents his theology of the Son. Note especially sections 6, 12, 13, 46

A good article on Tertullian’s Trinitarian theology – Against Praxaes – How Far Did Tertullian Advance The Doctrine Of The Trinity?

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podcasticon#306 – A History of the Catholic Church – Jesus Christ, Our God