Monasticism: The Arian Movement

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While one reaction to the Imperial Church was that of Monasticism, another movement soon emerged. This movement is known as Donatism. This movement focused on the issue of the lapsed or those who had succumbed and renounced their faith due to persecution or the threat of persecution. The debate over the restitution of the lapsed was particularly heated in North Africa. This same geographic region also experienced higher and more intense levels of persecution than other areas of the empire. As a result, a number of Christians yielded to the pressure, including many clergy and leaders in the church. This issue came to a head when it came time to elect a new bishop of Carthage. The outcome of the election resulted in Caecilian as bishop. This…show more content…
The best intentions of early Christians such as Justin, Clement, and Origen form the foundation of this issue in history. In an attempt to convince classical philosophers of the legitimacy of God and to show they were not atheists, they applied the doctrine of Logos. This doctrine provided common ground and a pathway to the classical philosophers of the era. In other words, these arguments were used to demonstrate that the Christian faith was not contradictory to elements of classical philosophy and therefore, not contradictory with the nature of God. From these roots, the debate emerged regarding whether the Logos or Word of God was in fact coeternal with God. While Alexander held firmly that the Word existed eternally with God, Arius debated that the Word was not coeternal. While this appears to be somewhat of a nuance or minor detail, the Arian position goes further to deduce that if the Word was not coeternal with God, Jesus was the first creation of God. This position does nothing short of shaking the entire foundation of the Christian…show more content…
After marrying and assuming the quiet life that he desired, his wife died. This was a turning point for Gregory as he too took on the monastic lifestyle pursued previously by his brother Basil and sister Macrina. However, the Nicene cause was still in need of champions. As such, his brother Basil soon compelled him to become bishop of Nyssa. In this role, he became a leader in the cause to such a degree that Emperor Theodosius took him as one of his advisors. However, his heart longed for the quiet and contemplative life. As such, once the Nicene cause was in hand, Gregory returned to the monastic lifestyle and lived the rest of his life in
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