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Christianity “To declare Jesus lord and saviour of the world is to identify oneself as a Christian.” Christians sometimes expect other religious traditions.

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Presentation on theme: "Christianity “To declare Jesus lord and saviour of the world is to identify oneself as a Christian.” Christians sometimes expect other religious traditions."— Presentation transcript:

1 Christianity “To declare Jesus lord and saviour of the world is to identify oneself as a Christian.” Christians sometimes expect other religious traditions to express themselves as statements of doctrines, and represent them as stubborn refusals to go along with Christian beliefs about Jesus.

2 Key Periods  1 st -2nd century: Independent religion. Emergence of Gospels, earliest teachers.  4 th century: Constantine. Trinity, Christology. Council at Nicaea.  11th c.: Latin and Greek churches go their own ways “Great Schism”  16th c.: Protestant reformation, counter reformation.  19th-20 th : modernity

3 Adherents  Catholics 1.2 billion 900,000,000 /  Eastern Orthodox 228 million  Protestants 670 million  “Oriental Orthodox” (miaphysites, monophysites) 82 million  Anglican Confession 80 million  Assyrians, other Eastern Churches (Nestorians) 600,000  nations_by_number_of_members nations_by_number_of_members 

4 Another interesting map:

5 Jesus: Key dates  Born ca. 6-4 BCE (Eusebius: 8 BCE. Dionysius Exiguus (first to mark time from the incarnation rather than from Diocletian, who persecuted Christians and the basis of our current Era: Annunciation was March, 1 BCE).  Ministry begins ca. 30 years of age (26 CE?).  Synoptic gospels and John differ about length of ministry and other details.  Goes to Jerusalem, tried, executed about 33 (29 CE)  “Jesus Institute”--with time line, ancient sources etc.

6 Canonic Gospels  Mark  Luke  Matthew  John Doctrine of the “fourfold Gospel:” first appeared in the work of Ireneus of Lyon (d. c. 200), author of Adversus Haereses (c. 180). Ireneus also supported the role of tradition, and opposed Gnosticism and Marcionism. It appears from his language that most Christians of the late 2 nd Century did *not* accord equal standing to the four Gospels we know as canonic, and in many cases taught others that are now considered non-canonic.

7 Mark—Simplest and probably representing the earliest Gospel—  Mark provides the most basic narrative of ministry and death of Jesus.  No nativity  Begins with baptism by John the Baptist  12 Apostles  In Jerusalem: Enters to shouts of Hosanna (probably a reference to Ps. 118)  Week in Jerusalem: celebrate Passover, is betrayed, arrested, tried executed, cries out “My God, My God…” before the Sabbath, buried and sealed, Day after the Sabbath, three women find the stone open and a figure appears to them to say he is risen.  “Synoptic” refers to material that is very similar in Mark, Matthew and Luke.  Q: a Source for Matthew and Luke for material not in Mark  There is little in Mark that is not also in the other two “Synoptic” gospels. Some of these passages unique to the Gospel of Mark are considered later additions.

8 Luke and Matthew Luke  Anticipatory stories and Nativity  Written for a Greek readership, at least in part.  There are differences between Luke and Mark’s accounts of the trial and crucifixion; the centurion says Jesus is innocent—not the Son of God.  Luke is interested in signs, portents, and prayers.  Luke usually considered author of Acts.  Both Luke and Matthew have the “Lord’s Prayer” Matthew  Also has a Nativity account—nearly total disagreement with Luke  Written for a Jewish audience, with many citations of OT sources.  Virgin birth—a passage from Isaiah 7  Psalm 22: provides a model for the Crucifixion.


10 Can we reconstruct Jesus’ own theology? Goals?  Kingdom of God,  restructuring society.  Jesus—a Jew whose teachings are similar to the Pharisees, despite later Church antagonism to Pharisees. (teachings about messiah, resurrection, saving lives on the sabbath, impurity of speech lashon ha-ra).  Luke—seems to have interpreted the Jesus movement as pacifist, even though it may have the only reference to the 1st Jewish revolt (leading to the destruction of the Temple in 70 CE).  But Mark 14 and Matthew 26 suggests that the Jesus movement was armed and resisted arrest.

11 John  “John’s purpose is to present not just the narrative but its cosmic significance.”  The book starts: “In the beginning”—to mirror OT— “was the Word and the Word was with God”  Compare the use of “God said” ten times, and the Rabbinic tractate (Avot 5:1) “with ten words the world was created.”  By ten divine sayings the world was created. Could it not have been created by one? What does this teach us? In order to emphasize the guilt of the wicked who destroy the world that was created with ten sayings and the merit of the righteous who preserve the world that was created with ten sayings.  Genesis 1:1 Religions/Genesis Chapter 1.doc Religions/Genesis Chapter 1.doc

12 Non canonic Gospels  mentioned only in passing in our text, but there are quite a few known.  al%20Gospels al%20Gospels   html Infancy Gospel of Thomas—has story of the clay birds that also appears in the Qur’an. html   One attempt to date the various writings.  Nag Hammadi texts.

13 Paul  d. c. 65—died in Nero’s persecution of Christians.  Pharisee from Tarsus  Vision on road to Damascus. Letters.  I Corinthians: main point is crucifixion and resurrection.  Oxtoby: Paul is responsible for a major theme: Contrast of life in the spirit with life in the flesh—opening the way for understanding our physicality negatively.

14 Marcion d. c. 160 Excommunicated from the Church in 144 CE  Marcion takes Paul’s contrast between Law and Gospel to astonishing lengths: in Marcion’s hand, this is a conflict between the Demiurge, and the God of Love. Thus—Marcion accepts only ten letters of Paul, and an edited version of Luke and Acts. He wrote Antitheses to support his approach.  The reaction to Marcion determined that there was indeed a Hebraic background to Christianity which would not be dropped.  Ireneus – probably most important response. Still, what to make of the Old Testament continued to be an issue. Eusebius, who was at Nicaea, wrote about the Old Testament as “Preparation for the Gospel.”

15 Gnostics “To Know”  Good vs Evil / Spirit vs Matter  Gnostics: Against material world  Doceticism: anti Gnostics  Mandeans  Manicheans (Mani: 216-275)  Nag Hammadi texts

16 Asceticism  Antony 251-356  Simon Stylites 390-459 (Pillar reached 60 ft high)  Pachomius 290-346 – 9 monasteries  Basil 330-379

17 Prayer:  Our Father (Paternoster) or Lord’s Prayer  Eucharist (“Thanksgiving”) Bread and Wine In synoptic Gospels, Jesus passes around bread and wine, declares these to be his body and blood and asks disciples to do same in remembrance of him. Mass (From the end of the ritual: Ite, missa est) or Holy Communion or Lord’s Supper. Lit. of Word, of Eucharist.   http://www.sttoms- Guide to the structure of the Mass http://www.sttoms-  enas_and_Litanies.htm enas_and_Litanies.htm

18 Sacrament  Baptism -- different meanings attached to Baptism in different denominations.  “Oath of Allegiance”—[[something like the ot ha-brit “sign of the covenant”—SW]].  List of seven emerges in Western Christianity in 13th century, now known as: Baptism, Confirmation, Eucharist, Penance, Anointing the sick, Ordination, and Marriage.

19 Christian Year  Christmas (Emergence of Christmas over Easter, Epiphany and other holidays, may reflect theological issues).  Epiphany (Magi AND Baptism) 6 January  Candlemas or Feast of Presentation: Feb. 2  Lent: 6 ½ weeks (40 days excluding Sundays)  Palm Sunday. (The palm ceremony probably recollects an event during Sukkot.)  Maundy Thursday (mandatum “commandment” to love one another. Washing of the feet)  Good Friday  Easter. Feast of Resurrection (also of course marked every week!) Originally asked Jews about Passover to determine date. In 325, adopted lunar calculations.  Ascension: Thursday, 40 days after Easter.  Pentecost “Whitsunday” or “Feast of the Holy Spirit”  This is a page put together by the Easterbrooks family with the Catholic liturgical calendar.

20 Art work and symbols  Jesus not always depicted as he is today—Hermes as shepherd-beardless.  Fish: Iēsous Christos Theou huious sōtēr. “Jesus Christ Son of God Saviour”  Cross is late symbol—became popular in Constantine’s time.  Churches: Large churches only built with the Imperial Christian period.  Basilica – added transepts to be shaped like cross.  Circular or octagonal plan(patterned after Temple?)  Chi/rho : Constantine’s symbol  IHS: from Greek! First three letters of “Iesous”—understood as In hoc signo vinces  (compare Biblical INRI in three languages).

21 Imperial Timeline  Diocletian 284-305 Established Eastern capital in Nicomedia. Major persecution in 303. St. George who killed the dragon—a victim of Diocletian  Constantine (ruled 306-337) 312 Won control of Western empire. (Vision of the Cross with IHS) 313 Gave Christians liberty to practice. 321 Sunday became public holiday (coincided with sun worship). 337 Converted on his deathbed  Julian 361-363 “The Apostate”  Theodosius 379-395 Made Christianity official religion

22 Summary of Theological issues  Transcendent God, incarnate and enters human condition—early period  Trinity—mid 3rd-4th century It is not an early belief; there is no Gospel confirmation of it. Matt 28:19, may be a late text.  Link between Divine and Human in The Son (Christology)—5th century  Atonement for human sin—throughout the centuries.

23 Creeds Apostles’ Creed—early, before Trinitarian controversy tm tm Early ideas included “binitarian” ideas of father and son. Nicene Creed—325, revised 381 Chalcedon 451 “truly God and truly Man… acknowledged in two natures…inseparably…the property of each nature preserved…not parted or divided into two persons” lish_translation lish_translation

24 Arius (Libya, c. 250-336): son of God created in time by Father as part of the creation. “There was an existence when the Son was not.” Athanasius 296-373 coeternity and coequality of father and son homoousion (“consubstantial”) vs. homoiousion (similar substance). This debate continued until 381 in the Empire, but continued with the Franks until 5th century and Visigoths in Spain until 7th. Christology was the doctrinal issue of the 5th century Two separate persons, divine and human: Assyrian Church of the East. (Nestorians) One person, one nature: Monophysites. Copts, Jacobites, Armenians. One person, two natures (“Truly Man and truly God” Chalcedon 451. Text on pp. 233-234): Greek and Latin churches. Mary: Mother of God or Mother of Christ? Nestorian position opposed theotokos “Mother of God.” (we return to this later) “Filioque” Did the Holy Spirit proceed from the Father “and the Son” ? This was a major part of the split between Greeks and Latins (1054), but there are other issues as well celibate priests, and the nature and material of the Host.

25 Eastern Catholic Churches  Uniate Churches recognize Rome – starting in Crusades Maronites 1182 but the name comes from 1595, when the Church of Ukraine allied with Rome. Today the preferred nomenclature is “Eastern Catholic.”  Ukrainian, Byzantine, Greek, etc.

26 Byzantine/Greek Orthodox Church.  Byzantium captured by the Turks in 1453. Parts of Greece became independent in 1821. The close association of the Church with the ruling regime and the national language is reflected in many ways, including art, and the involvement of the Emperor in the appointment of the Patriarch of Constantinople.  Figure of Jesus no longer the young shepherd but bearded royal figure with orb and halo, Christ Pantokrator – translation of “World Ruler” or “Ruler of the Universe” (compare rex universi, mālik al- ‘ālamin ملك العالمين ”King of the Universe”, מלך העולם ). Icons become important, and the “Iconoclastic controversy” erupted in the 7th- 8th centuries.  Worship and Music: Musical developments (and developments in the notation of scriptures) took place at about the same time in Judaism Christianity and Islam. Ceremonies, particularly connected with Easter in Jerusalem. Orthodox Christianity spread to Serbia, Eastern Europe (as far north as Moravia) and Russia.


28 LATIN CHRISTIANITY  Bishop of Rome: called “Pope” from 3rd century. (Coptic patriarch also called “Pope”). Matthew 16:18: play on words regarding “Kepha” (Petrus= “rock”). You are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church”.  Augustine of Hippo 354-430 Background: studied “Neoplatonism,” and Manicheism. Monica—his mother--was committed to Jesus but not really “a Christian” in the full sense of the word. Confessions City of God  Pelagian controversy: Pelagius 354-c 420/440. Man can become perfect through his own actions-- denied Original Sin. ( Mormons: Joseph Smith’s 13 principles include "We believe that men will be punished for their own sins, and not for Adam’s transgression.)"  St. Benedict (480-550) composed the rule which is fundamental to Western monastic life. Orders Cluniacs Cistercians Carthusians Franciscans Dominicans Carmelites  Pope Gregory I “The Great” r. 590-604: Gregorian Chant  Gregory XIII 1582: reformed the Calendar to make Easter calculations keep in line with rulings of the Nicene council.

29 Church vs. State: issues in the relation between Pope and Princes.  Charlemagne / Holy Roman Empire  Eastern Empire, Ottomans  Henry III (1039-1056)—Deposed popes  Gregory VII said Pope could depose Emperors (1075)  “Babylonian Captivity” and “Great Schism” 1309-1377; 1378-1414

30 Crusades  Islamic conquest 637  Church of the Holy Sepulchre burned 1010  Split between Rome and Constantinople 1054  Seljuq capture of Jerusalem 1071  Note that the dispute about temporal and spiritual power was raging in this period.  Pope Urban II called for the Crusade in 1095  Capture of Jerusalem 1099  Saladin recaptures Jerusalem 1187 (Richard the Lion Heart 1189- 99)  Constantinople sacked by fourth crusade 1204  2nd Latin Kingdom under Frederick II of Hohenstaufen 1228-1244  Last Crusader stronghold (Acre and Athlit) ended in 1291  By the end of the Crusader period, the Ottomans had begun their incursions into SE Europe; Muslims continued to trade with Europe when appropriate; in the 20th century, some Muslims began to look at the Crusades as the archetype of Western infiltration.

31 Crusader Map

32 Mary  “Principal feminine point of access to the Trinity and a as model of sorrow enduring love in her own right.”  Annunciation 25 March, Purification (after childbirth) 2 February, Dormition / Assumption 15 August  Theotokos raised in 5th century Nestorian controversy.  Debate over her sinlessness: 8 December feast of the Immaculate Conception. Dominicans were against, Franciscans promoted it.  Assumption of Mary: did she rise to heaven and does she reign alongside her son? Did she do it with or without death?  “Mother of the Church” [[Compare with vision of Rachel crying over her children in Jeremiah –SW]] Oxtoby compares to Isis.  Rosary: 5 sequences of ten beads; One Our Father and ten Hail Marys  Visions of Mary Lourdes 1858—Juan Diego in Mexico  Protestants: typically had reservations about Mother of God. Orthodox lacks some of the Latin dogma  1854 Pius IX Immaculate Conception defined as dogma  1950 Pius XII Assumption of Mary defined as dogma

33 Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274)  Summa Theologiae: Five arguments for Divine Existence. First three are cosmological, 4 is ontological, 5 is teleogical.  Change or motion is evidence of a Prime Mover  Pattern of Cause and effect points to First Cause  Things can exist or not, but their must be a being that exists out of necessity, a Necessary Existent  Things have grades of goodness, truth, and nobility; must be a Supreme Good.  Plan observable in the universe is evidence of a Divine Planner.   1879: Pope Leo XIII made Thomism the official doctrine of the Church

34 Protestant Reformation Political background: Latin Christianity was a European phenomenon; there were Greek Orthodox and other churches elsewhere. Ottomans captured much of the European and Asian Greek Orthodox world; 1st battle of Kosovo in 1389, fall of Constantinople in 1453. But in the West, Spain pushed out the Muslims from Granada in 1492, and the voyages of discovery especially by Spain and Portugal broadened Christianity’s horizons. Printing press invented in Mainz 1456.  Desiderius Erasmus (1466-1536)  John Wyclif (1329-1384)

35 Martin Luther 1483-1546 Competing sales of indulgences touched off the controversy. Prince Frederick of Wittenberg (1486-1525) was angered because competing relics cut into his revenue. Luther maintained that the money was better left in the pockets of the people, that if the Pope could release people from Inferno he should free all its denizens, and the “treasury of scripture” outweighs the “merits of the saints.”  151795 Theses95 Theses  1521“Diet of Worms”  1545-1563Council of TrentCouncil of Trent Faith vs. Works. Paul: Works are Jewish commandments; Luther: confession and penance; acts of the Pope and the institutional Church. Scripture (as understood by Luther) becomes the authority. “sola scriptura” (five solas:  Translation of NT 1522 OT 1534. Married life; took priesthood off the pedestal it had had since the time of Constantine. No intercession was necessary. Luther disagreed with other reformers about such things as baptism and Eucharist; in addition to scriptural authority, married clergy, and justification by faith alone, a fragmented Church was also a legacy of this period which has continued to the present.

36 Main churches of the 16th century reformation  Lutheran  Anglican  Reformed (Calivinist)  Anabaptists (Baptism of believers, not infants)  Unitarian: Martin Cellarius (1499-1564) pupil of Reuchlin (1522) (merged with Universalists in 1961!)  Puritans: Oxtoby calls it a “movement” rather than a “denomination.”  Luther, Reuchlin and the Jews, Christian Hebraism and Kabbalah—topics which ought to be discussed as well  Ezra Stiles-note Hebrew lettering on books in library, Tetragrammaton on sphere at upper left. 

37  17th century  Congregationalists  Baptists  Quakers  18th Century  Pietism  Methodists: John Wesley (1703-91)John Wesley  Revival. Great Awakening 1740-3. Jonathan Edwards (1703-1758)  Holiness Churches: “feeling intensely the … gift of holiness.” Church of the Nazarene, Church of God. Holy Rollers; glossollalia (Speaking in tongues)

38 Worship among Protestants  Avoid Catholic/Orthodox symbols and ideas: avoid sign of the Cross. Clergy represent the community and teach or lead (pastor or minister), rather than officiate and dispense miracles. Eucharist: becomes symbolic rather than real, or the presence of the body and blood is together with the bread and wine. Differences in how dispensed: line up in Catholic, but distributed in many Protestant congregations. Catholic uses unleavened wafers and wine (Greek Orthodox use leavened wafers). Many Protestant churches use grape juice and sometimes other items for bread.  Frequency of Eucharist: Protestant movements both led to a more frequent sharing of Eucharist by the general congregation and other modifications.  Lectionary revision: some churches had a lectionary for reading OT and NT in consecutive order; typically changed to highlights on Sundays.  Creeds and Worship texts: Seen as a mark of the Holy Spirit acting through the church, but Apostle’s Creed and Nicene Creed retained popularity.  Art and Music: Changed setup of churches—minister faced congregation; removed images, including Jesus on Cross and images of Mary.  Hymns: Oxtoby mentions a few, including Luther’s “A Mighty Fortress is Our God.” And “Amazing Grace” –words from 1779.

39 “The God of Abraham Praise” A brief history of a hymn.  Originally, the 13 principles of Maimonides. 13 principles and Geniza.doc (this has some further information about Maimonides, too.) 13 principles and Geniza.doc  Reworked to a Christian framework by T. Olivers. (This website has the familiar melody for this hymn and the Jewish “Yigdal”). The history is recounted in this website: The text is herem with a fuller version here: I suspect Olivers may have written 13 stanzas as in Maimonides’ principles and the original Yigdal but I have not found a cyberversion with more than 12.  Hymn redone, with words translated by Max Landsberg (Reform Jewish) and Newton Mann (Unitarian) in Rochester NY

40 New American Denominations  Disciples of Christ  Sevent Day Adventists: In 1831, William Miller (1782- 1849) preached that 2,300 days in Daniel 8:14 meant 2300 years and expected the 2nd coming in 1843. This did not materialize, but they revised their predictions and eventually became unspecific. Ellen Gould Harmon White (1826-1915) became the confirming spiritual authority of the movement.  Jehovah’s Witnesses: Charles Taze Russel (1852-1916): Founder.  Jesus is created and reject Trinity; reject secular authority; Zion’s Watch Tower; Meet in Kingdom Halls; door to door missionary activity.  Christian Science:  Mormons:  Pentecostals:

41 Modernity  Creation and Evolution  Contextualizing the Bible  Vatican II  Ecumenicism  Martin Luther King  Women  Faith of Others

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