Early Church Christological Controversies

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Emily Splinter
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Early Church Christological Controversies
February 20th, 2013

Gnosticism
Gnosticism is the thought and practice, especially of various sects of late-Christian and early Christian centuries, distinguished by the conviction that matter is evil and that the emancipation comes through knowledge. They see the material world as something different of the world that God himself created. Jesus is identified by some Gnostics as an embodiment of the supreme incarnate to bring gnosis to the earth.

Arianism
Arianism is the theological teaching concerning the relationship between God to the Son of God. Arius asserted the Father of God in a separate entity from the Son of God. Arianism also says the Son of God was never always there..

Arianism is defined as those teachings attributed to Arius, which are in opposition to mainstream Trinitarian Christological doctrine. Arianism is also referred to neither uncreated nor created in the sense other beings are created.

Nestorianism
Nestorianism is a Christological doctrine, which emphasizes the disunion between the human and divine natures of Jesus Christ. Nestorius and his teachings were eventually condemned which lead to Nestorius breaking away from the church.

Nestorianism holds that Christ had two loosely united natures, which are divine and human. It states that Jesus is not the Son of God, but is personally united with the Son of God.

Irenaeus
Irenaeus was a Bishop in Gaul and was later a part of the Roman Empire. His writings were formative in the early development of Christian Theology. His best know book is “Against Heresies” and it is a detailed attack on Gnosticism. The attack was also a threat to the church and especially on the system of Gnostic Valentinus. He was one of the first great Christian theologians who emphasized the traditional values of the Church; especially Scripture and tradition. Against the Gnostics, who said that they possessed a secret...
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