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Free Will

(7,479 words)

Author(s): Markschies, Christoph | Loos, Fritz | Herms, Eilert | Fraenkel, Carlos | Nagel, Tilman
[German Version] I. Terminology – II. Law – III. Church History – IV. Philosophy of Religion – V. Dogmatics – VI. Ethics – VII. Judaism – VIII. Islam I. Terminology Classical Antiquity lacked a term for free will, a concept first popularized by Christians in Late Antiquity. Aristotle discussed the problem in the context of asking in what sense actions lie “within us” (ἐϕ᾿ ἡμῖν/ ephʾ hēmín; Arist. Eth. Nic. III 1, 1110a, 1–3). The Stoics called the concept τὸ αὐτεξούσιον/ to autexoúsion (“self-control”; ¶ cf. Chrysippus [ SVF II, 975–990]), translated into Latin as liberum arbitriu…

Gnosis/Gnosticism

(8,426 words)

Author(s): Filoramo, Giovanni | Markschies, Christoph | Logan, Alastair H.B. | Koslowski, Peter | Leicht, Reimund | Et al.
[German Version] I. Religious Studies – II. Christianity – III. Philosophy – IV. Judaism – V. Islam I. Religious Studies Gnosis (Gk γνῶσις/ gnṓsis, “knowledge”) is a particular form of religious knowledge that brings salvation per se. It is not dependent on a particular object but has its value and its justification in itself. It is total knowledge, since it overcomes the dichotomy between subject and object – in fact every dichotomy –, because it is absolute knowledge of the absolute. From the point of view of the history o…

Congregational Order

(159 words)

Author(s): Markschies, Christoph
[German Version] Norms for the life and theology of Christian communities in the first century were primarily set by the two-Testament Bible, which had become a collection of authoritative texts, but also by church orders in the true sense, by the developing confession (of faith), initially set down in free formulations, and by theology, condensed into dogmas since the imperial councils of the 4th century (Nicea, Constantinople: IV). Naturally, after the demise o…

Enhypostasis/Anhypostasis

(621 words)

Author(s): Markschies, Christoph
[German Version] Leontius of Jerusalem and other neo-Chalcedonians (Neo-Chalcedonism) use the Greek adjective ἐνυπόστατος/ enhypóstatos from Late Antiquity to describe their view that the dogma of the human and divine natures of Christ as articulated by the Council of Chalcedon (Christology) is not referring to independent hypostases or persons, and that instead each of the two natures exists “enhypostatically” in relation to the one person of Christ and to the one hypostasis of the Trinity in three hypostases (Leontius, Adversus Nestorianos II 13 [PG 86, 1561 …

Baumgarten-Crusius, Ludwig Friedrich Otto

(205 words)

Author(s): Markschies, Christoph
[German Version] (Jul 31, 1788, Merseburg – May 31, 1843, Jena) studied classical philology and theology in Leipzig. After completing his habilitation in 1809 in the philosophical faculty there, he became associate professor of theology in 1812 and full professor of theology in 1817 in Jena. Baumgarten's erudition is demonstrated by his numerous articles on ancient philology and church h…

Early Church

(6,745 words)

Author(s): Markschies, Christoph
[German Version] I. The Term – II. Periods of the Early Church – III. The History of the Church and of Christianity in Antiquity – IV. Review I. The Term The term “early church” is one of the most common English expressions used to designate the church during the times of the emperors in Greco-Roman antiquity, i.e. the Christian church from its beginnings until the end of antiquity or Late Antiquity. The end of this …

Platonism

(4,813 words)

Author(s): Halfwassen, Jens | Markschies, Christoph
[German Version] I. Philosophy 1. General character.  The influence of Plato’s thought was unlike that of any other philosopher. With the Academy (I) (c. 385 bce), Plato was the first philosopher to found a school in the institutional sense and so establish a philosophical tradition. Moreover, his criticism of writing shows that he gave precedence to the oral transmission of his thought by his students over his Dialogues, which were mainly written to publicize the ¶ Academy. In this sense, Platonism in antiquity understood itself as the legitimate heir of Plato’s phil…

Image of God

(2,928 words)

Author(s): Janowski, Bernd | Markschies, Christoph | Wielandt, Rotraud
[German Version] I. Old Testament and Judaism – II. Christianity – III. Islam I. Old Testament and Judaism 1. Only in three passages does the Old Testament speak of humankind's being made in the image of God (collective use of הָ]אָדָם]/[ ] ʾādām in Gen 1; cf. Gen 1:27: male and female): in the relationship between God and human beings in Gen 1:26f. and 9:6, and in the relationship between human beings in Gen 5:1, 3 (all P). Substantially the same idea is conveyed in Ps 8:6–9*; for later treatment of the theme, Sir 17:3–7 and Wis 2…

Inner Person

(1,567 words)

Author(s): Markschies, Christoph | Burkert, Walter | Betz, Hans Dieter | Heesch, Matthias
[German Version] I. Concept – II. Antiquity – III. New Testament – IV. Early Church – V. Systematic Theology I. Concept The notion of a “real person” residing within the outer human being is widely attested in ancient literature and became part of a comprehensive system of metaphors by the time of Hellenism at the latest. However, this notion is conveyed through very different terms, corresponding also to conceptions of rather differing nature. The single English concept “inner person,” which cannot adequately …

Traditio apostolica

(252 words)

Author(s): Markschies, Christoph
[German Version] (also called the Church Order of Hippolytus). E. Schwartz (1910) and Richard Hugh Connolly (1916) discovered that a few Late Antique church orders could be treated stemmatically as editions or translations of a (lost) literary archetype. Both scholars theorized that it had the title (᾿Αποστολικὴ παράδοσις/ apostolikḗ parádosis, “Apostolic Tradition”) and had been written by Hippolytus. Today only a minority of scholars accept this double hypothesis. What has been confirmed is the hypothesis of a single archetype, probably in Greek, of these chur…

Ambrose of Milan (Saint)

(439 words)

Author(s): Markschies, Christoph
[German Version] (333/334, Trier – 397) was an important bishop and is regarded as one of the four teachers of the Western Church since the end of the 7th century. Ambrose was from a prominent family of Roman (city?) Christians; educated in Rome, he was the governor of Aemilia Liguria with a seat in Milan between 372 and 374. In 374, as the compromise candidat…

Cappadocian Theology

(542 words)

Author(s): Markschies, Christoph
[German Version] The monastic theologians and bishops, Basil the Great, his brother Gregory of Nyssa and their friend Gregory of Nazianzus came from the province of Cappadocia in Asia Minor and spent most of their lives there. For this reason, they are often referred to by modern historians and theologians as “the three great Cappadocians.” A cousin of Gregory of Nazianzus and colleague of Basil, Amphilochius of Iconium, is sometimes added to their number. The t…

Origen

(3,010 words)

Author(s): Markschies, Christoph
[German Version] I. Life – II. Works – III. Theology (c. 185/186 Alexandria – c. 253/254) I. Life In reconstructing the life of Origen, we must rely on information given by his grandson and pupil Eusebius of Caesarea ( Hist. eccl. VI 1–39). The relevant portions of the Apology for Origen of Pamphilus of Caesarea (CPG 1, 1715) were not translated into Latin by Tyrannius Rufinus and have been lost with the Greek original, but certain statements by Jerome, Rufinus, and Photius of Constantinople (Bibl. Codex 118) may derive from that source. The detailed section in Epiphanius of Salamis ( Haer. 64…

Apostolic Succession

(2,883 words)

Author(s): Markschies, Christoph | Wohlmuth, Josef | Felmy, Karl C. | Campenhausen, Axel Frhr. von | Neuner, Peter
[German Version] I. Terminology Ecumenical discussion (Ecumenicalism), in particular, assumes that the term “apostolic succession” refers to an original and clearly defined characteristic of the church office. However, the notion that the notae ecclesiae indicate an unbroken chain, going back to the apostles, of officeholders who have each come into office through the laying-on of hands by another legitimate officeholder, appeared only relatively late and is not the original meaning of the underlying Greek and Latin semantic field. The Greek and Latin terms διαδοχή/ diadochḗ/…

Christopher, Saint

(422 words)

Author(s): Markschies, Christoph
[German Version] The earliest evidence for the veneration of a Christopher goes back to the year 452, when the honorific title Χριστόφορος/ Christóphoros (“Christ-bearer”) first came into use as a proper name ( ASS Nov. II/2, 396 no. 39). The Acts of Saint Christopher (BHG 309) date from the early 6th century. They apparently equate Christopher with Christianus, a dog-headed soldier saint from the Acts of Bartholomew, who was called Reprebos before his baptism and who came from the land of the cannibals. Early Byzantine iconography accordingly portrayed…

Apostles' Creed

(608 words)

Author(s): Markschies, Christoph
[German Version] The received text (T, first attested by Pirmin, Scarapsus §§10/12/28) of the creed known in the modern period as the Symbolum apostolicum or Symbolum Apostolorum goes back to the so-called Old Roman creed (R). The great majority of scholars accept the hypothesis of J. Ussher, archbishop of Armagh (1647), that R is first attested in Greek in Marcellus of Ancyra (Epiphanius, Haer. 72.3.1 = BSGR §17) or in the Psalter of Aethelstan (§18); the Latin text can be reconstructed from Rufinus's Explanatio symboli (§19). From 1910–1916 onward,…

Succession, Apostolic

(3,002 words)

Author(s): Markschies, Christoph | Wohlmuth, Josef | Felmy, Karl Christian | Campenhausen, Axel Frhr. v. | Neuner, Peter
[German Version] I. Terminology Especially in ecumenical discussion (Ecumene), there is a widespread assumption that the expression apostolic succession denotes a primitive and clearly defined attribute of ecclesiastical office. However, the notion that the marks of the church (Notae ecclesiae) include an unbroken chain of office holders going back to the apostles and that each of these office holders was placed in office through the laying-on of hands of another legitimate office holder appeared on the scene rel…

Paul Melanos

(230 words)

Author(s): Markschies, Christoph
[German Version] of Bēth Ukkāme (Paul the Black, Paulos Melanos; c. 500 Alexandria – 584 Constantinople). In 564 Jacob Baradaeus consecrated Archimandrite Paul, who had grown up in Alexandria, as the anti-Chalcedonian (Jacobite) patriarch of Antioch (Monophysites), a position he held until 577. His tenure was beset by serious church-political conflicts. A temporary flirtation of the patriarch with the creed of Chalcedon affirming the two natures of Christ (c. 571) was followed by an abrupt dissoci…

Nestorianism

(956 words)

Author(s): Markschies, Christoph
[German Version] The term Nestorianism can be used in two senses. First, it can designate the theology (and sometimes also the ecclesiastical organization) of today’s Holy Apostolic and Catholic Assyrian Church of the East, whose members are called Nestorians (or East Syrians or Chaldeans; Apostolic Church of the East) because in 484/486, in conscious departure from the Roman imperial church, they adopted the Christology of Nestorianism, which had been condemned at the Council of Ephesus in 431 (Nes…

Musanus

(117 words)

Author(s): Markschies, Christoph
[German Version] According to Eusebius ( Hist. eccl. IV 28, cf. also 21) Musanus wrote a lost, “very elegant” book against people who had gone over to the so-called Encratites. Both the author's date and his place remain unclear. Suggestions, among others, are (because of the statement of Eusebius) the reign of Emperor Marcus Aurelius (161–180), or on the basis of Eusebius, Chronicorum liber ad annum, 2220 the time of Septimius Severus (193–211), and the regions of Egypt or Asia Minor. Christoph Markschies Bibliography A. v. Harnack, Geschichte der altchristlichen Litteratur bis E…
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