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HISTORY of Christian Theology

The Incarnation Controversy

HCT article is pending. Links to more articles: Voting About God in Early Church Councils by Ramsay MacMullen Cyril, Nestorius, and the Logos: A Re-Examination of Early Church Epistles by Brock Whisler Nestorius did not intend to argue that Christ had a dual nature, but that view became labeled Nestorianism by Mark Dickens Christological Controversies of the First Four Ecumenical Councils by Ricardo Diegue The Two ‘I’s of Christ: Revisiting the Christological Controversy by Charles Stang Christology: Introduction 1 of 15 by Manik Debbarma The Christology of the Coptic Orthodox Church by Anthony Bibawy The rejection of the term Theotokos by Nestorius Constantinople by Eirini Artemi Conceiving Orthodox Christology, reviewing Cyril –...
The Messiah

The Messiah

The Son of God was born and lived in Judea where he quietly changed the world. Through his life, death and resurrection, Jesus established his divine role as the Savior of the World. He proclaimed his divinity and performed miracles; taught a gospel of faith, hope and love; organized a movement; was crucified and rose from the dead; and charged his disciples to teach all nations. Jesus Proclaimed his Divinity and Performed Miracles You must make your choice. Either this man was, and is, the Son of God, or else a madman or something worse.C.S. Lewis laid out the argument of Christ’s divinity well when he said: “I am trying here to prevent anyone saying the really foolish thing that people often say about Him: I’m ready to accept...
A World in Conflict

A World in Conflict

Jesus was born into a Jewish world swirling with conflict from the tensions created by the Greek Occupation, the Maccabean Revolt, the Diaspora, the Rise of Rabbinical Judaism with its diverse sects, and Roman oppression. The Greek Occupation Many Jews returned to Jerusalem and Palestine after the Persian emperor Cyrus the Great gave permission in 538 BC for the Jews to return from Babylonia. The Jewish nation remained a quasi-independent vasal state of Persia until Alexander the Great conquered Persia in 334 BC, and took over control of Palestine. Life was never the same afterwards. Alexander and the Greek elite believed that their civilized culture offered the solution to all of the world’s problems and orchestrated a concerted effort...
Christianity’s Jewish Roots

Christianity’s Jewish Roots

In order to understand Christianity, it is essential to grasp the importance that monotheism, God’s covenant with Israel, King David, the temple in Jerusalem, the Babylonian captivity, and the Torah have to the Jewish tradition at the time of Christ’s birth. The Hebrew God is a Being with Emotions and Acts The God of the Old Testament is not a passive god without body, parts or passions. He is a being who is intimately involved in the lives of His people.Unlike Plato’s first principle that does not act and is not affected by outside stimuli, Israel’s God is a being with emotions who does things. He spoke and created the world. He is identified by many anthropomorphic characteristics. He brought Israel out of slavery in Egypt...

Synopsis

We begin our course of inquiry by evaluating various preliminary concepts needed to put the people, events and ideas that we will study into a broader picture to provide increased understanding. First, we will begin by reviewing the human quest for meaning, the origin of religion and the role of fear in religion. Then, we’ll consider how the human factor interplays with religion and how Christians have determined truth over the ages. Polytheism Zoroastrianism had a much greater impact on western ideas than most people realize.Let’s explore polytheism at the time of Christ beginning with Hinduism, the earliest recorded world religion, with its core beliefs in: 1) the law of karma; 2) the cycle of existence consisting of...
Polytheism

Polytheism

In order to understand the origins and revolutionary nature of Christian theology, it is important to view it in proper relief against the religions in the region at the time of Jesus’s birth. Besides Judaism, which we will discuss in a subsequent lecture, various forms of polytheism dominated the religious landscape at the time Christianity came on the scene. Each province was subject to its own set deities with different powers who controlled the various forces of nature with one god typically becoming pre-eminent. But they all were still subject to the law of fate and eternal destiny. The nature of the gods in each society often differed from the nature of the gods of other areas. Some were plants, like the large sacred oaks or other...