Sunday, December 30, 2007

The Nicene Creed - IOT

In Our Time had host Melvyn Bragg and the distinguished guests surrounded in order to discuss the Nicene Creed. The creed came in a moment in time, Christianity had been evolving from a small sect to a large and diverse multitude of inspired followers and the next station was to institutionalize the faith.

Part of this was theology, to discuss the various opinions among the churches and part of this was politics. Constantine became the first Christian emperor of Rome and he felt he needed a united church behind him. Thus the council gathered in Niceae and a creed was hammered out that attempted to address both the theology and the politics. It meant to resolve the disputes, throw out the heretics and unite the Roman world around one imperial faith. It seems it was more of an attempt and a first one in a series of such.

It is argued how the creed, apart from not exactly achieving what Constantine had hoped for, did manage to stamp out the diversity from Christendom. How modern is In Our Time when this is worded in the form of a regret. Just as it is so much of our time to see an appraisal of Arius. Arius was the major heretic of the time who'd been exiled after the Nicene Creed was accepted and who might have been the most important target. Arius in any case has been vilified throughout the ages, so it is said.

The exciting news is: next week In Our Time will discuss one of my favorite writers, Albert Camus.

Previously on In Our Time:
Four humor medicine,
The Sassanian Empire,
The Fibonacci Sequence.

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