Trinity Exposed

Dedicated to exposing the truth about the Trinity through the admissions of Trinitarian Apologists,Historians, and Scholars themselves. A necessary tool for all those who want to enlighten ordinary trinitarians who are ignorant to these facts.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

What Really happened at Nicea?

The Players
Alexander of Alexandria: Bishop of Alexandria. Said Christ was the 'same substance' as the Father. Convened a council of bishops from Egypt and Libya to anathematize Arius and excommunicate him and his followers.

Athanasius: served as a deacon at the Council of Nicaea. He was strongly opposed to Arianism. He helped the Council decide against Arianism, and was later exiled.

Constantine: Emperor of Rome. He called the Council of Nicaea to settle the dispute over Arianism. He was the Emperor who recognized Christianity as a legal religion and later tried to make it the state religion.

Eusubius, Bishop of Nicomedia and a supporter of Arius, would later baptize Constantine. Contrary to popular Christian myth, Constantine was a pagan and was baptized on his deathbed. He also never really made Christianity a state religion because Christians couldn't even agree on anything. The power grab of the pagan Trinitarians would be completed after his death.

"In his theological interpretation of the idea of God, Arius was interested in maintaining a formal understanding of the oneness of God. In defense of the oneness of God, he was obliged to dispute the sameness of essence of the Son and the Holy Spirit with God the Father, as stressed by the theologians of the Neoplatonic influenced Alexandrian school. From the outset, the controversy between both parties took place upon the common basis of the Napoleonic concept of substance, which was foreign to the New Testament itself. It is no wonder that the continuation of the dispute on the basis of the metaphysics of substance likewise led to concepts that have no foundation in the New Testament--such as the question of the sameness of essence (homoousia) or similarity of essence (homoiousia) of the divine persons."

It was 325 A.D. at Nicaea that the doctrine of the Trinity was rammed through by Athanasius (using Mafia tactics) in a Council that was overseen by the Emperor Constantine who, ironically enough, thought of himself as God-incarnate. (Constantine was a Sun Worshiper and only made an official conversion to "Christianity" on his deathbed). Roman coins of the period still portrayed the image of the sun God despite the alleged sudden adoption/conversion of Christianity. Many of those present at the Council Of Nicaea were opposed the doctrine of the Trinity, siding with Arius. Even after the Nicene Creed, the Trinity was still hotly debated for decades and centuries after.

325 AD - Constantine convenes the Council of Nicaea in order to develop a statement of faith that can unify the church. The Nicene Creed is written, declaring that "the Father and the Son are of the same substance" (homoousios). Emperor Constantine who was also the high priest of the pagan religion of the Unconquered Sun presided over this council.

According to the Encyclopedia Britannica:
"Constantine himself presided, actively guiding the discussions and personally proposed the crucial formula expressing the relationship of Christ to God in the creed issued by the council, `of one substance with the Father'."

Quoting Bruce L. Shelley, a writer for Christian History, we read:
"The Council of Nicea, (was) summoned by Emperor Constantine and held in the imperial palace under his auspices. Constantine viewed the Arian teachings—that Jesus was a created being subordinate to God—as an ‘insignificant’ theological matter. But he wanted peace in the empire he had just united through force. When diplomatic letters failed to solve the dispute, he convened around 220 bishops, who met for two months to hammer out a universally acceptable definition of Jesus Christ.

"The expression homo ousion, ‘one substance,’ was probably introduced by Bishop Hosius of Cordova (in today’s Spain). Since he had great influence with Constantine, the imperial weight was thrown to that side of the scales. . . . As it turned out, however, Nicea alone settled little. For the next century the Nicene and the Arian views of Christ battled for supremacy. First Constantine and then his successors stepped in again and again to banish this churchman or exile that one. Control of church offices too often depended on control of the emperor’s favor."
The American Academic Encyclopedia states: "Although this was not Constantine's first attempt to reconcile factions in Christianity, it was the first time he had used the imperial office to IMPOSE a settlement."
"The Emperor Constantine himself is said frequently to have appeared without his imperial state, and, with neither guards nor officers around him, to have mingled in the debate, and expressed his satisfaction at their unanimity, whenever that rare virtue adorned their counsels. For Constantine, though he could give protection, could not give peace to Christianity. . . . Momentous questions, which, up to that time, had been entirely left to a small intellectual aristocracy, had been calmly debated in the villa of the Roman senator or the grove sacred to philosophy, or discussed by sophists whose frigid dialectics wearied without exciting the mind, had been gradually brought down to the common apprehension. The nature of the Deity; the state of the soul after death; the equality of mankind in the sight of the Deity -- even questions which are beyond the verge of human intellect; the origin of evil; the connexion of the physical and moral world had become general topics; they were, for the first time, the primary truths of a popular religion, and naturally could not withdraw themselves from the alliance with popular passions. . . . The first civil wars which divided Christianity were those of Donatism and the Trinitarian controversy." --History of Christianity, vol. ii., pp. 295, 296.

At the end of this council, Constantine sided with Athanasius over Arius and exiled Arius to Illyria.
328 AD - Athanasius becomes bishop of Alexandria.
328 AD - Constantine recalls Arius from Illyria.
335 AD - Constantine now sides with Arius and exiles Athanasius to Trier.
337 AD - A new emperor, Contantius, orders the return of Athanasius to Alexandria.
339 AD - Athanasius flees Alexandria in anticipation of being expelled.
341 AD - Two councils are held in Antioch this year. During this council, the First, Second, and Third Arian Confessions are written, thereby beginning the attempt to produce a formal doctrine of faith to oppose the Nicene Creed.
343 AD - At the Council of Sardica, Eastern Bishops demand the removal of Athanasius.
346 AD - Athanasius is restored to Alexandria.
351 AD - A second anti - Nicene council is held in Sirmium.
353 AD - A council is held at Aries during Autumn that is directed against Athanasius.
355 AD - A council is held in Milan. Athanasius is again condemned.
356 AD - Athanasius is deposed on February 8th, beginning his third exile.
357 AD - Third Council of Sirmium is convened. Both homoousios and homoiousios are avoided as unbiblical, and it is agreed that the Father is greater than His subordinate Son.
359 AD - The Synod of Seleucia is held which affirms that Christ is "like the Father," It does not however, specify how the Son is like the Father.
361 AD - A council is held in Antioch to affirm Arius' positions.
380 AD - Emperor Theodosius the Great declares Christianity the official state religion of the empire.
381 AD - The First Council of Constantinople is held to review the controversy since Nicaea. Emperor Theodosius the Great establishes the creed of Nicaea as the standard for his realm. The Nicene Creed is re-evaluated and accepted with the addition of clauses on the Holy Spirit and other matters.
If Nicaea just formalized the prevalent teaching of the church, then why all the conflicts? If it were the established teaching of the church, then you would expect people to either accept it, or not be Christians. It was not the established teaching, and when some faction of the church tried to make it official, the result was major conflict.
It was a theological power grab by a faction of the church. A major complication throughout all this was that the emperors were involved and directed the outcome. At Nicaea it was Constantine that decided the outcome. Then we have the flip-flopping of opinion with the result that Athanasius is exiled and recalled depending on who is in power. In 357 AD the declaration that homoousios and homoiousios are unbiblical, and that the Father is greater than His subordinate Son. This is 180 degrees from Nicaea.
In 380 AD Emperor Thedosius declares Christianity the state religion. One can come to the conclusion that whichever way Theodosius favors, that is the way in which it is going to end. This is exactly what happened next.
In 381 AD the struggle was finally ended by the current emperor, Theodosius the Great, who favored the Nicene position. Just like at Nicaea, the EMPEROR again decided it. The emperors were dictating the theology of the church.

Gibbon observes, in his Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, chap. xxvii., that:
"Theodosius declared his resolution of expelling, from all churches in his dominions, the bishops and their clergy who should obstinately refuse to believe, or at least to profess, the doctrine of the Council of Nice. His lieutenant Sapor was armed with the ample powers of a general law, a special commission, and a military force. . . . In the space of fifteen years, Theodosius promulgated at least fifteen severe edicts against the heretics; more especially against those who rejected the doctrine of the Trinity; and to deprive them of every hope of escape, he sternly enacted that, if any laws or rescripts should be alleged in their favour, the judges should consider them as the illegal productions of either fraud or forgery."


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Blogger Lvka said...

"What Really happened at Nicea?"

Well, if you really want to know...

1:59 PM  
Blogger A Healing Reality said...

great post

10:15 PM  
Blogger A Healing Reality said...

great post

10:15 PM  

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