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Download A Brief History of Heresy (Blackwell Brief Histories of by G. R. Evans PDF

By G. R. Evans

I simply complete this convenient little publication and located it very illuminating. It supplies a heritage of ways dissent got here to be outlined as "heresy", that have been the real ones from the time of Saint Augustine and after, and why it really is tough to evangelise the "social gospel" even at the present time. i need to learn a few of the different books during this sequence.

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Catechesis The focus on the creeds encouraged increasingly systematic teaching by way of catechesis, or instruction, of the adults who were converted to the faith. It is not possible to become a heretic by accident. Heresy involves choice, and perseverance in an opinion when the Church has pronounced it wrong. It has not been regarded as heresy to discuss whether something might be a heresy, or to raise a question about a 34 The Boundaries of Orthodoxy: Faith point of faith, especially when the purpose was to establish where the right view lay and to set out a ‘confession of faith’ or statement of belief.

Another area of contemporary preoccupation which is reflected in the clauses of the Nicene Creed was the ‘dualist’ solution to the problem of good and evil (see chapter 6). The ‘dualists’ (who were known as the Gnostics even before the lifetime of Jesus) and later as the Manichees, Cathars, Bogomils or Albigensians), held that there are two great powers in the universe, a good God and and evil God, equally strong and locked in eternal conflict for control of the cosmos. The dualists attributed the creation of matter (or visible things) to the evil God, and the creation of the invisible spirit or soul to the good God.

This had two early roles. One was baptismal. The Christian convert affirming his or her faith at the moment of baptism could conveniently say a short paragraph in the presence of the congregation, so as to join his or her faith with theirs. The other was liturgical in a more general way. In worship, particularly at the Lord’s Supper or Eucharist, the congregation could affirm the faith of the community together in a single form of words, often in a formal ‘dialogue’ in which questions were asked and responses given.

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