The Papacy and the Levant, 1204-1571 (Vol.4) The Sixteenth by Kenneth M. Setton

By Kenneth M. Setton

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Extra info for The Papacy and the Levant, 1204-1571 (Vol.4) The Sixteenth Century from Julius III to Pius V

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The next four, during the fifth, sixth and seventh centuries, turned to the second part (the fullness of Christ's humanity) and also sought to explain how humanity and Godhead could be united in a single person. The seventh council, in defence of the Holy Icons, seems at first to stand somewhat apart, but like the first six it was ultimately concerned with the Incarnation and with human salvation. The main work of the Council of Nicaea in 325 was the condemnation of Arianism. Arius, a priest in Alexandria, maintained that the Son was inferior to the Father, and, in drawing a dividing line between God and creation, he placed the Son among created things: a superior creature, it is true, but a creature none the less.

The Churches of Greece and Cyprus are Greek; four of the others – Russia, Serbia, Bulgaria, Poland – are Slav. The heads of the Russian, Romanian, Serbian and Bulgarian Churches are known by the title Patriarch; the head of the Georgian Church is called Catholicos-Patriarch; the heads of the other churches are called either Archbishop or Metropolitan. (3) There are in addition several Churches which, while self-governing in most respects, do not possess full independence. These are termed ‘autonomous’ but not ‘autocephalous’: Czech Republic and Slovakia (55,000) 1 Sinai (900) Finland (56,000) Japan (25,000) China (?

This title was already accepted in popular devotion, but it seemed to Nestorius to imply a confusion of Christ's humanity and His Godhead. Mary, he argued – and here his Antiochene ‘separatism’ is evident – is only to be called ‘Mother of Man’ or at the most ‘Mother of Christ’, since she is mother only of Christ's humanity, not of His divinity. 1 What Mary bore was not a man loosely united to God, but a single and undivided person, who is God and man at once. The name Theotokos safeguards the unity of Christ's person: to deny her this title is to separate the Incarnate Christ into two, breaking down the bridge between God and humanity and erecting within Christ's person a middle wall of partition.

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