THINK THIS, NOT THAT #6: Monothelitism. Say THAT With Your Mouth Full!

Oh, the confusion!Last time in “Think This, Not That,” I talked about the Council of Chalcedon, at which the Church ironed out the controversy over the “Three Chapters” and Nestorianism (which wrongly claimed that Jesus had two distinct subsistences).In the seventh century, one of the biggest theological crises looming at the Council of Constantinople III (680-681 A.D.) was the spread of monothelitism.Say what? Well, that’s “mono” (as in “one”) and “thelitism” (as in theanthropic wil … [Read more...]

THINK THIS, NOT THAT #5: Knock-Down, Drag-Out Fights Over Jesus

Whiz, bam—the early church leaders certainly knew how to put heretics and dissident theologians in their place! They’d bang their coffee cups on the table and cry, “Anathema!!”(An anathema, if you have to ask, is a ban or curse solemnly pronounced by ecclesiastical authority, and accompanied by excommunication. And anathema was one of the actions which came out of Constantinople II, the fifth ecumenical council.)The story of Constantinople II is a saga of disagreement and dissent, bitter … [Read more...]

THINK THIS, NOT THAT #3: Is the Holy Spirit Really God? The Trinity, As Defined in Constantinople I

The first council of Constantinople was convened in 381 A.D. in—guess where?—Constantinople.  It was convened by Theodosius, with the goal of uniting the church upon the basis of the orthodox faith.  But travel was  difficult at that time, and despite Theodosius’ good intentions, the council was poorly attended—with no Western bishops or legates in attendance.  Only a few bishops from Egypt attended, and they arrived late.  In reality, then, the council was only a synod of bishops from Thrace, As … [Read more...]


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