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Messaliani

(392 words)

Author(s): Fitschen, Klaus (Kiel)
[German version] (Μασσαλιανοί; Massalianoí). The Messaliani (Syrian mṣallyēnē for ‘prayer’; Greek Euchites, Εὐχῖται/ Euchîtai), as they were known to their enemies, referred to themselves as ‘Pneumatics’ (Πνευματικοί/ Pneumatikoí, ‘endowed with spirit’), or ‘(true) Christians’. The participants of the 4th- and 5th-cent. Christian synods who condemned the Messalians took offense at their prayer, regarding it as immoderate and as a challenge to baptism, because the Messalians claimed prayer to be the essential path to perfe…

Baptism, symbol of.

(381 words)

Author(s): Fitschen, Klaus (Kiel)
[German version] Symbols of baptism are the professions of faith (= creed), which were spoken during or in conjunction with a  baptism. The assumption of older scholars that NT professions of faith such as Rom 10,9 or Phil 2,11 were connected with baptisms, are not supported by any documentation apart from a single interpolation dating from the late 2nd cent. (Acts 8,37). Set formulae for the profession of faith during baptism are documented from the early 3rd cent., but originally they were not spoken by the celebrant himself. The earliest clear confirmation of the baptismal symbol ( symbo…

Baptism

(1,097 words)

Author(s): Fitschen, Klaus (Kiel)
[German version] I. Non-Christian There are analogies to the Christian baptism (βάπτισμα; báptisma or βαπτισμός; baptismós, Lat. baptisma or baptismus) in the history of other religions: rituals involving immersion in, or sprinkling with water and cleansing rituals were widespread prior to and alongside Christianity. However, these rituals followed different procedures and were interpreted differently, even though from the Christian point of view they were seen as a satanic mockery of the Christian baptism (Tert. …

Messalianer

(342 words)

Author(s): Fitschen, Klaus (Kiel)
[English version] (Μασσαλιανοί). Die von ihren Gegnern so bezeichneten M. (syrisch mṣallyēnē für “Beter”; griech.: Euchiten, Εὐχῖται) nannten sich selbst “Pneumatiker” (Πνευματικοί, “Geistbegabte”) oder “(wahre) Christen”. Das von ihnen praktizierte Gebet empfanden die Teilnehmer der sie im 4. und 5. Jh. verurteilenden christl. Synoden als übertrieben und als Konkurrenz zur Taufe, da es der entscheidende Weg zu Vollkommenheit sein und im Gegensatz zu ihr die Sünde im Menschen vollständig beseitigen sollte …

Symeon

(715 words)

Author(s): Fitschen, Klaus (Kiel) | Berger, Albrecht (Berlin)
(Συμεών; Symeṓn). [German version] [1] Monk and priest, 4th cent. AD Macarius the Egyptian (Μακάριος/ Makários). Born around the year AD 300, Macarius lived from c. AD 330 - c. 390 as a monk and priest in the Scetic desert (Egypt). The accounts of his life (Rufinus, Historia monachorum 21; Pall. Laus. 17) describe his immaculate ascetism and his miracles. The later hagiographic tradition has developed this into a vita. Except for a number of oral sayings ( Apophthegmata patrum) none of Macarius' pronouncements have been handed down; a letter attributed to him may well be a…

Sphragis

(481 words)

Author(s): Michel, Simone (Hamburg) | Gärtner, Hans Armin (Heidelberg) | Fitschen, Klaus (Kiel)
(σφραγίς/ sphragís, literally  Seal). [German version] [1] Seal (stone) Seal (stone): precious or decorative stone with intaglio engraving, signet ring, seal (impression). On 2nd-4th cent. AD magical amulet gems from Roman Egypt there is often mention of the demon-averting seal of Solomon and, connected with Solomon motifs, the Seal of God ( sphragìs theoû). Gem-cutting Michel, Simone (Hamburg) Bibliography S. Michel, Die magischen Gemmen im Britischen Museum, 2001, 268 ff., pls. 64-66; 430-450. [German version] [2] see Seals ; Subscriptio See Seals; Subscriptio. Gärtner, Ha…

Tolerance

(4,834 words)

Author(s): Cancik-Lindemaier, Hildegard (Tübingen) | Eder, Walter (Berlin) | Fitschen, Klaus (Kiel) | Hollender, Elisabeth (Cologne) | Toral-Niehoff, Isabel (Freiburg)
I. Terminology and philosophy [German version] A. Modern concept The general modern meaning of the word 'tolerance' is the readiness of individuals, groups or states to permit the opinions, ways of life and philosophical and religious convictions of others to 'have validity' alongside their own. Today, the meaning of the word ranges from 'sufferance' (e.g. in the sense of constitutional law: the sufferance of immigrants, diverse confessions, religions) to the emphatic affirmation of the 'different' pheno…