I'm looking forward to talking part in Episode 1 of 3 in the Confessional Bibliology Roundtable beginning tomorrow, Tuesday, May 12, 2020 at 4 pm EST with Chris Thomas (moderator), Pastor Christian McShaffrey (Five Solas OPC, Reedsburg, Wisconsin) and Pastor Pooyan Mehrshahi (Providence Baptist Chapel, Cheltenham, England).
We plan to meet for three consecutive Tuesdays at 4 pm EST via Zoom (live-streamed on the Confessional Bibliology Facebook group). You can find out how to join the conversation here.
In each session a different speaker will give a presentation on an issue related to the text of Scripture and theology/ministry, which we will then discuss. The sessions will also be recorded and posted online.
Here is the upcoming schedule
Episode 1: May 12, 2020: Topic: John 1:18 (Presenter: Christian McShaffrey)
Episode 2: May 19, 2020: Topic: 1 John 5:7-8 (Presenter: Jeff Riddle)
Episode 3: May 26, 2020: Topic: Text and Apologetics/Evangelism (Presenter: Pooyan Mehrshahi)
I won't be able to watch it live, but I look forward to checking out the finished product! I did forget about John 1:18. Burgon observed how Irenaeus said μονογενης υιος once, and μονογενης θεος once, and then μονογενης υιος θεος once. Then Clement of Alexandria said μονογενης υιος θεος μονος, which Burgon thought was near the reading of the Old Latin Text of the Vercelli Copy. Eusebius four times wrote μονογενης υιος, but twice μονογενης θεος, and told his readers they could choose either reading. Strangely enough Gregory of Nyss and Basil, they were familiar with μονογενης υιος, but quoted μονογενης θεος more often. Burgon said Gregory adopted the phrase μονογενης θεος three times and Basil thirty-three times. Cyril of Alexandria also used μονογενης θεος. However, Dean thought the expression crept into the passage due to the Gnostic influences and eventually the Arian influence. During the Arian Heresy Arius always wrote μονογενης θεος and his opponents always wrote μονογενης υιος. Something to observe also is that the Arians took over the Roman Church more than once and was dominant for a time in the East, which could be the reason for Gregory of Nyss and Basil's preferred reading of μονογενης θεος. Here is a quote from Decoding Nicea, which does a great job dealing with the evidence:
"Constantius was soon won over to Arianism, and until his death in 361 he was the benefactor of Arian bishops. He brought Eusebius from Nicomedia to Constantinople in 341, giving Eusebius the prime see next to Alexandria in the east. Meanwhile, Constantine II and Constans continued to support Nicene bishops in the west. Eusebius, now of Constantinople, wasted no time in giving the Arians control of the east. He called a council in Antioch in 341 and affirmed a creed that did not include the offensive term homoousios. The council also removed Athanasius from Alexandria and installed an Arian bishop in his place. All in all, Athanasius would be removed from his bishopric five times, the council of Antioch's decree being his second removal. The creeds of the Council of Antioch were ignored by the western church, but for the most part, with the support of Constantius, Arian bishops would hold sway in the east until Julian the Apostate rose to power in 361. Constantine II was killed by Constans' soldiers in 341. Not long after Constans demanded that his brother Constantius deal with the division in the empire over the conflicting creeds of Nicea and Antioch. An attempt was made to accomplish this at the Council of Sardica in 343."
Pavao, Paul. Decoding Nicea (pp. 128-129). Unknown. Kindle Edition.
Many don't realize how powerful Arianism was during the time of Nicea and Constantine. They almost took over the church in the Roman Empire. Now it seems that their Theology has been resurrected.
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