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Basic Church History
Transcript of Basic Church History
Day of Pentecost - 33 A.D.
In the Roman empire, there already existed two different cultures. The West, as best represented by Rome, and the East, symbolized by Constantinople. Though the gospel broke down all barriers between these cultures, distinctions remained that gave each a different nuanced understanding of Christianity.
The most obvious difference was that of language. The West came to speak primarily in Latin, while the East carried on the Greek language. The language barrier alone would come to cause confusion and misunderstanding as the two cultures tried to relate to one another in the Church.
354 - 430 AD
The single most influential teacher in the West, both Roman Catholic and Protestant hands down. They say that the Middle Ages is only a series of footnotes on this brilliant theologian.
"Athanasius Against the World!" It sure
seemed so to this theological giant. He was exiled five separate times by the authorities for upholding the orthodox understanding of the Trinity. This earned him the title, "Father of Orthodoxy."
The Cappadocian Fathers
This group was responsible for the development of the mature form of the Trinity. They championed the deity of the Holy Spirit, as well as developing the distinction between essence and person in the Trinity. They are also helped set the foundation for the Eastern Church.
Thomas Aquinas is one of only four men to be give the title of "Doctor of the Church" by the Roman Catholic Church. His influence, especially in Roman Catholicism, is massive. The Council of Trent in the 16th century accepted Aquinas' doctrine as authentic expression of Catholic teaching.
Perhaps the most well-known Christian since Paul, Martin Luther is the very symbol of the Reformation. He defined the gospel as justification by faith alone and proclaimed Sola Scripture (Scripture alone) from every rooftop.
This French lawyer turned reformer was part of the second generation of Protestants churchmen. More rigorous and logical in his thinking than Luther, Calvin stressed the sovereignty of God, which would give birth to what is known today as Calvinism or Reformed theolog.y
Tertullian of Carthage is often considered the Father of Latin Theology. He did much to lay the foundation of Trinitarian doctrine, even coining the term "Trinitas." He was deeply concerned with holy living in the Church and towards the end of his life, he became part of the moralist sect of Montanism.