Doctrine and Power: Theological Controversy and Christian by Carlos R. Galvao-Sobrinho

By Carlos R. Galvao-Sobrinho

throughout the fourth century A.D., theological controversy divided Christian groups during the jap half the Roman Empire. not just was once the reality approximately God at stake, but in addition the authority of church leaders, whose legitimacy trusted their claims to symbolize that fact. during this booklet, Galvao-Sobrinho argues that out of those disputes used to be born a brand new variety of church management, one during which the ability of the episcopal workplace used to be drastically elevated. the writer indicates how those disputes pressured church leaders many times to say their orthodoxy and legitimacy—tasks that required them to mobilize their congregations and have interaction in motion that consistently projected their energy within the public area. those advancements have been principally the paintings of prelates of the 1st 1/2 the fourth century, however the kind of command they inaugurated turned the foundation for a dynamic version of ecclesiastical management came across all through past due antiquity.

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The Arian controversy revolved around precisely these questions. Stressing the majesty and transcendence of the Father, Arius envisioned the Son as a subordinate being, generated by the Father not out of his own being, because the Father, like the Platonic God, was “indivisible . . unchangeable . . 7 Convinced that their views represented the orthodoxy of the Catholic Church, bishop and priest and their supporters could not arrive at a compromise. This was not unusual in disputes about God, as we have seen in the examples of Heracleides and Paul of Samosata.

26 Again, Origen understood this best. ), impossible. Divine truth could not be reduced to simple formulas. 28 “If something profound occurs to someone in a disputation,” he wrote, “this must be expressed, but not with absolute certainty. To do so is for the imprudent, those who have lost the sense of human weakness. . ”29 Such an opinion was at once enlightened and mystical. One arrived at the truth through reasoning and argumentation, but only the truly inspired grasped its meaning, and then never fully, so that, in practice, orthodoxy could not exist out there an sich;30 rather, it must evolve in continuous debates about the meaning of God’s word.

38 In the third century, when bishops emerged as more forceful leaders, they became sensitive to charisma and grew wary of spiritually gifted Christians. 42 They were also dramatized in the ceremony of ordination that was being elaborated in the early third century. A treatise attributed to Hippolytus describes the ritual: The people will gather . . with the council of elders and the bishops. . With the assent of all, the . . ] will place their hands upon him. . Everyone will keep silent, praying in their hearts for the descent of the Spirit.

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