Saturday, 24 August 2019, 1:44 AM
Site: Becker Bible Teacher Resources
Course: Becker Bible Teacher Resources (Scholar)
Glossary: Main Glossary
A

Abraham

First Old Testament patriarch who wandered from the Sumerian city of Ur (modern Iraq) to the land of the River Jordan. The LORD God made a covenant with him, promising that his descendants would become a great people and live in His land. The religion of Judaism was established. Abraham is the father of Isaac and Ishmael. He is the father of both the Hebrew and Arabic people and considered holy in Islam.

Adoptionism

The view that Jesus became the Christ or was appointed to that position sometime during his earthly ministry (at his baptism or after his resurrection). This false view suggests that Jesus Christ earned the title of Christ through sinless devotion to the will of the LORD God. This view was taken by early Christians to reconcile claims that Jesus was the son of God with the radical monotheism of Judaism.

Amillennialism

The belief that there will be no literal thousand-year reign by Jesus Christ upon earth. This belief expresses the view that the millennium has already begun and is identical with the church age, with the final judgment of sinful mankind by Jesus Christ bringing to end the church age, and establishing a permanent physical reign. This belief regards the millennium as the time of the Church and connects the binding of Satan (Revelation 20:1-10) with the Lord Jesus Christ's past work. The concept of Rapture is not important in this belief. (Contrast Premillennialism, Postmillennialism, Pretribulationism)

Ancient Ink

Created by combining charcoal, gum Arabic, and water and applied to papyrus, parchment, potsherds, stone, or clay.

Anger

Lust for revenge.1

 

Reference:

1Saint Augustine, Bishop of Hippo, The City of God, trans., Marcus Dods, Modern Library Paperback ed. (New York: Random House, Inc., 2000), 464.

Anmchara

The 'soul friend' of the Celtic religion is an important element, where every monk would have his own mentor to help and advise him. This practice in Irish Christianity was retained from Celtic paganism, where a druid would act as a spiritual adviser to a younger person.

Anoint

To consecrate and dedicate to the service of LORD God through His divine election.

Anomoeans

Belief that the Son of God is unlike the Father.

Also see Homoousians, Homoiousians, and Homoeans.


Antediluvian

Denotes the primitive period before the Flood recorded in Genesis 7.

Anthropology

The study of mankind's past human existence through intellectual classification in the fields of natural science and humanities. The four main divisions of anthropology study are biology, culture, archaeology, and linguistics.

Antinomianism

An extreme belief that church officials misuse the grace of God to excuse sin and should be disregarded. The belief of salvation through grace alone as the only requirement for salvation, with an additional rejection of religious authority that dictates moral or traditional standards. Antinomianism leads to the support of "lawlessness" in disobeying religious authority which is in direct opposition to the expressed will of God to obey the leaders  He has placed in authority over others.

Apostasy

Active rejection, desertion or revolt of previous belief.

Apostate

A person that forsakes previous belief.

Apostle

An ambassador of the Gospel that spreads His Word as commissioned by Jesus Christ.

Apostle's Creed

An early statement of Christian belief that dates back to about a half century after the last of the New Testament writings (AD 500). This creed is traditionally chanted and widely accepted among most Christian churches.

I believe in God, the Father Almighty, the Maker of heaven and earth, and in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord:

Who was conceived by the Holy Ghost, born of the virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, dead, and buried;

He descended into hell. The third day He arose again from the dead;He ascended into heaven,
and sitteth on the right hand of God the Father Almighty; from thence he shall come to judge the quick and the dead.

I believe in the Holy Ghost; the holy catholic church; the communion of saints; the forgiveness of sins; the resurrection of the body; and the life everlasting.

Amen.

Apostolate

The dignified office of an apostle. In the Roman Catholic Church, the Pope heads the Apostolic See, bishops assume mission as Apostolates in their dioceses, and the laity organize their devotions to the mission of the church.

Apostolic

Possessing the dignified characteristic of an Apostle commissioned by Jesus Christ as an ambassador to the Gospel. It is often the term used to describe the succession of spiritual authority from the apostles to Church authority, an important ingredient for validation of sacraments and orders.

Apostolic Age

The earliest period of Christianity that lasted to the death of the last of the twelve apostles, which dates from the crucifixion of Jesus Christ to the death of Apostle John in c. 115.

Apostolic Fathers

The fathers of the early Christian church whose lives overlapped those of the twelve Apostles of Jesus Christ, and the collection of works that are attributed to them.

Apostolic See

An episcopal see whose foundation derives from one of the apostles efforts.

The five major sees

Rome, in Italy (Saint Peter and Paul the Apostle)

Constantinople, now Istanbul in present-day Turkey (Saint Andrew)

Alexandria, in present-day Egypt (Saint Mark the Evangelist)

Antioch, in present-day Turkey (Saint Peter)

Jerusalem, in the Holy Land (Saint Peter and Saint James)

There are also some other minor sees that claim their origins begin with Apostles and claim their right to be called an Apostolic See.

Other Claims

Aquileia, in northeastern Italy (Mark the Evangelist)

Archdiocese of Athens, Greece (Saint Paul)

Armenian Apostolic Church (Thaddeus (Jude the Apostle) and Bartholomew the Apostle)

Corinth, in Greece (Saint Paul)

Ephesus, in present-day Turkey (John the Apostle)

Malta (Saint Paul)

Paphos, in Cyprus (Barnabas and Paul)

Philippi, in Greece (Saint Paul)

Saint Thomas Christians (Thomas the Apostle)

See of Milan, in northwestern Italy (Barnabas the Apostle)

See of Syracuse, in Sicily (Saint Peter)

Seleucia-Ctesiphon, in present-day Iraq (Thomas the Apostle, Bartholomew the Apostle, and Thaddeus of Edessa)

Thessaloniki, in Greece (Saint Paul)

Apostolic Succession

The unbroken line of succession starting with the Twelve Apostles and perpetuated through Bishops, which is considered essential for order and sacraments to be valid to the Roman Catholic, Orthodox and Anglican churches.

Apostolos

A book with parts of the Acts and parts of the Epistles of the Apostles used by the Greek Orthodox Church.

Apotaktikoi

Ascetics that live together in small groups.

Apotheosis

The elevation, glorification, or exaltation of a person to the rank of a god or a glorified ideal.

Apotropaism

The use of ritualistic ceremony and magic spells to anticipate and prevent evil.

Apperception, (Law of)

The law of apperception states that all learning is the association of new information with previously acquired knowledge or skill.  This universal learning technique takes place when previous knowledge and experience foundation is built upon with new learning.  Prerequisite skills must be mastered then linked to information from their minds to new information that is presented.

Aquinas, Thomas

The foremost Christian theologian of the Middle Ages, Thomas Aquinas assimilated Aristotelian methods and tools into the discussion of Christian theology. This philosophical methodology remained the distinctive feature of scholastic theology until the arrival of humanism and the Reformation. A Dominican friar that was taught at the University of Paris, Aquinas authored Summa contra Gentiles and Summa theologiae.

Aramaic

Developed by the inhabitants of the ancient land of Aram, it was the trade language of a particular region at the time of Jesus Christ. It is the ancient Semitic language which Hebrew and Arabic scripts were derived.

Archaeology

A branch of historical research that seeks to reveal the past by a systematic recovery of its surviving remains.

Argument

One or more premises and one conclusion. The two main types of arguments are deductive and inductive.

Arianism

The name given to the heresy of Arius (see Arius); believers in this heresy were subjected to great persecutions by fellow Christians, and the heretical belief died with them. The death toll of Arians killed by fellow Christians was far greater than the number of Christian victims of Roman persecution.1

1 Perry, Marvin, et al. "The Young Church." Western Civilization: Ideas, Politics, and Society, Eighth Edition. Houghton Mifflin Company, 2007, 182.

Arius

A Greek priest in Alexandria and leader of a faction that denied the complete divinity of Jesus Christ. He believed that Jesus Christ was more than man and less than God and that the Father and the Son did not possess the same nature or essence, with no permanent union between Them; the Father alone is eternal and truly God. The resulting controversy concerning these arguments resulted in the assembly of the Council of Nicaea (A.D. 325), the first ecumenical council with bishops from all parts of the Roman world. The council condemned Arius and ruled that God and Christ were of the same substance, coequal and coeternal; their position was expressed in the "Nicene Creed," which continues to be an official stance of most Christian churches.

Ark of the Covenant

A gold-plated, ornate wooden chest that housed the two tablets of the Law given to Moses by the LORD God. It was placed in the Tabernacle, in the Holiest of Holies, as the wandering Israelites set up camp. The Ark received the presence of the LORD God between the two Cherubims that sat atop it. It is believed to have been captured when Jerusalem fell to the Babylonians in 586 BC, and its fate is unknown today; however, many claim it is hidden in the relic chapel of the church of Saint Mary of Zion, at Axum Ethiopia (See Ethiopian Jews). (Exodus 24)

Armenia

A mountainous area located between the Roman and Persian empires in southwestern Asia, SE of Black Sea and SW of Caspian Sea. Christianity arrived at the end of the third century and was made the official religion of the state, even before Rome. The present-day location is divided between Armenia, Turkey, and Iran.

Asceticism

The severe practice of self-discipline and the abstention of indulgencies like sexual activity and diet often seen in monastic religious communities that withdraw from society.

Autograph

Original texts of the Bible.

Avarice

Lust for money.1

Reference:

1Saint Augustine, Bishop of Hippo, The City of God, trans., Marcus Dods, Modern Library Paperback ed. (New York: Random House, Inc., 2000), 464

Axumite Empire

Northeastern Africa trading nation growing from the proto-Axumite period ca. 4th century BC to achieve prominence by the 1st century AD. Legend speaks of the founder of the Axumite Empire in Ethiopia to be Manelik, rumored son of Queen Sheba and King Solomon. The Axumite possessed the largest navy on earth at one time, and were the only African civilization south of Egypt to develop writing. Their tribal language was Ge'ez, and they also spoke Greek. The Axumite had close links with the ancient Israelites, and were Jews themselves, although their religion was based solely upon the Torah and not the Pharisaic Judaism that was the norm in the Middle East and Europe. The lost Ark of the Covenant is rumored to have been stored by Manelik in the Ethiopian highlands for safekeeping.1

Reference:

1 Hill, Jonathan. "Early Christianity: A World Religion." Handbook to the History of Christianity. Zondervan, 2006, 106.
B

Baptism

The Baptism of Jesus Christ is a baptism of redemption through immersion of a believer in water in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. The Baptism of Jesus Christ frees the believer from the control of sin, by bringing death to sin. When the believer arises from the baptismal waters, he is born again, and resurrected into the new life in Christ Jesus. It is an act of obedience of the believer's faith in a crucified, buried, and risen Savior, the believer's death to sin, the burial of the old life, and the resurrection to walk in newness of life in Christ Jesus. It is a testimony to faith in the final resurrection of the dead.

Barbarian

Society of lowest form before it evolves into higher civilization

Beatific

The giving of happiness, bliss or blessings

Beatific Vision

The immediate, eternal and direct perception of the LORD God that is received by those who ascend to Heaven upon their physical death.

Beatification

(Rom. Cath. Ch.) The official act of the Pope declaring a deceased person has entered Heaven and is enjoying the experience in happiness. His declaration bestows the title of Saint to the person, and makes them subject to religious honor and sometimes public cult. Beatification is considered the reflection of sanctification in someone who has died through the authority of the Church.

Beatitude

Supreme blessedness, promised to specific believers by Jesus Christ in his sermon on the mount.

Belief

A strong faith, inclination, or principle that is based upon thoughtful reflection without emotional weight (See Ethics)

Benefice

Position or post granted to ecclesiastics with guarantees of a fixed amount of property or income.

Bernard of Clairvaux

A 12th century monk who first secluded himself with the Cistercian Movement in 1112. He was of enormous importance and fame for his charismatic writings on the love of God in the 12th century. A larger than life figure, his message always reminded believers of the importance of moral purity and spiritual closeness to God. However, he is reviled by man, even today, for his contradictory participation in the condemnation of Peter Abelard, and his preaching of the Second Crusade. Regardless, by the time Bernard died, there were over 350 Cistercian abbeys throughout Europe as a result of his influence.1 (See Cistercian Movement)

Reference:

1 Hill, Jonathan. "Early Christianity: A World Religion." Handbook to the History of Christianity. Zondervan, 2006, 191.

Bible Study

The Lord Jesus Christ taught His Word to His Disciples with four levels of learning. Jewish scholars also teach the Torah on these four classical levels. Christians studying and teaching the Word of God should strive for the same degree of detailed instruction as He moves them to learn.

 

Peshat—understanding the simple meaning of the text at face value. It is the cornerstone of interpretation; all other approaches must not contradict the peshat analysis, or it is flawed. (Literal)

Remez—an allusion, or an allegorical and philosophical level of study (Figurative)

Drash—the regal level, the Bible is understood using riddles and parables. (Parable)

Sod—the hidden meaning or the mystical level (Typology)

Biblical Archaeology

A branch of archaeology which began in the 19th century that seeks to reveal the historical setting and material culture of the peoples and lands of the Bible; it is the science of excavation, decipherment, and critical evaluation of ancient material records related to the Bible. Biblical Archaeology can assist in understanding of the original context of the Bible so that the theological truth will not be misinterpreted or misapplied. Its proper use confirms the Word of the Bible, corrects the Wording of the Bible, clarifies the World of the Bible, and complements the Witness of the Bible.1

Reference:

1 Price, Randall. The Stones Cry Out: What Archaeology Reveals About the Truth of the Bible. Eugene, Oregon: Harvest House, 1997.

Biblical Inscriptions

Past written remains of words written in Biblical languages and cognate languages have affirmed the integrity of the received authoritative texts of the Bible. They help scholars understand the peculiarities of poetic sections and better interpret words that appear only once.

Biblical Languages

The original texts of the Bible were written in Hebrew (Old Testament), Greek (New Testament) with Aramaic influences (Semitic trade language spoken by ancient Middle Eastern cultures).

Biblical Maximalist Archaeologist

Biblical Maximalists approach their interpretations that the Bible contributes significantly to our understanding of the history of Palestine. They use reason and science in the same way as Biblical Minimalists to carefully analyze their research of the extremely limited information. However, when it comes time for interpretation of their findings by ordering and analyzing the evidence, they hold the Bible to be the ultimate foundation for drawing conclusions. The Bible is the Manuscript Evidence that has sustained its surety over time. It is supported by witness testimony; because of its reliability and proven record of historical accounts the Bible has priority in interpretation. Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence to the Biblical Maximalist, and the Word of God stands as the primary source which all other conclusions are based.

Biblical Minimalist Archaeologist

Biblical Minimalists approach their interpretations of archaeological evidence with the idea that the Bible contributes little or not at all to our understanding of the history of Palestine before 500 B.C. (before the return from exile). They are unable to connect the Bible with their findings in a relevant way, and when they do interpret Biblical artifacts that connect with that Truth of the Word of God, they are more likely to take a contradictory or confrontational approach.

Birthright

The privilege or right to which a person is entitled by birth. In the ancient patriarchal household, the eldest son took precedence over his brother (Gen 43:33); after his father died, he received a double share of the inheritance (Deu 21:17) and became head and priest (cf. Exo 22:29; Num 8:14-17).

Bless

To make or pronounce holy, consecrated, sanctified, protected or glorified. A blessing is an offering of God’s favor coming from Him or a wish for God’s favor coming from humans.

Blessed

Made or pronounced holy, consecrated, sanctified, protected or glorified. 2. Worthy of adoration, worship or reverence: "the Blessed Trinity. 3. (Rom. Cath. Ch.) The body of a deceased person who has received beatification, and thus "blessed in Heaven".

Blessed Event

The birth of a child.

Blessed Sacrament

The consecrated Host

Blessing

Favor of the LORD GOD bestowed upon a person, resulting in supreme happiness. 2. Invoking the favor of the LORD God upon a person.

Boasting

Lust for applause.1

 

Reference:

1Saint Augustine, Bishop of Hippo, The City of God, trans., Marcus Dods, Modern Library Paperback ed. (New York: Random House, Inc., 2000), 464

Book of Kells

A copy of the Gospels in a manuscript of intricate design and beautifully illuminated, produced around AD 800 by a monastery on the island of Iona (Scotland). An outstanding work of art in the early Middle Ages, which according to tradition was written by Saint Columba, was still being used to bless Irish armies in the 1690s.

Born Again

Being Born Again, or Regeneration, is a work of God's grace whereby believers become new creatures in Christ Jesus at the moment a faithful believer is resurrected out of the Baptismal waters. The Baptism of Jesus Christ brings death to sin, and becomes the grave to which faithful believers in Jesus Christ's own Resurrection, are Born Again as they come up out of the waters. This regenerative process brings a change of heart and a new life able to receive and be guided by the Holy Spirit.

Bourgeoisie

Capitalists who have the means to produce wealth. Karl Marx believed that conflict between the Bourgeoisie (capitalists) and Proletariat (workers) was the key to social change.

Bug-bear

An false idol causing needless fear, dread and horror to come upon a person

Bull

A formal papal document with a bulla attached.

Bulla

A seal attached to an official papal document

Byzantine Empire

A Christian civilization founded by Constantine the Great in AD 330 with the new city of Constantinople (New Rome). Upon the capture of Constantinople by the Ottomans in 1453, the Byzantine Empire came to an end. The Christian bastion with Emperors presiding over civil and religious life, and the near-perfect union of the church and state, endured for 1,123 years and 18 days.
C

Caesaropapism

The connection of a political system joined with a spiritual system, making the head of state both king and pope as the head of the church and supreme judge in religious matters. It is often associated with the Byzantine Empire, where emperors presided over church councils and appointed patriarchs.

Cairn

A heap of stones set up as a landmark, monument or memorial.

Canaan

Biblical land of Israel located in Southwest Asia, bordering the East coast of the Mediterranean, and extending East to the Jordan River. (See Palestine)

Canons

When ecumenical councils deal with matters  that regard organizaitonal, disciplinary, or procedural matters, they are called "canons."

When ecumenical councils deal with matters of faith, the resulting edicts are known as "symbols" or "dogmas." 1

1Ferguson, Everett. Church History Volume One: From Christ to Pre-Reformation. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2005, 211.

Carthusian Movement

A monastery founded by priest and scholar Bruno in 1084 in the Alps called Chartreuse led to the movement that became part of the unofficial conscience of the church. Rather than based upon the Rule of St. Benedict, Bruno's group focused upon duplicating the early desert fathers with smaller communities, solitary contemplation and work. It blended the old ideal of hermitage with the medieval institution of the communal monastery, and became respected for its severe approach to a life of solitude for dedicated monks. (Hill, 189)

Bibliography

Hill, Jonathan. Zondervan Handbook to the History of Christianity. Oxford: Lion Publishing, 2006.

Catechism

Theology set within a scheme of questions and answers.

Catholic

The whole body of Christians

Celestial Hierarchy

A corpus within the Dionysian writings which presents the angelic hierarchy in three triads of seraphim, cherubim and thrones; dominions, powers and authorities; principalities, archangels and angels.

Chancel

The altar of a church that is usually an enclosed space for use by clergy and other officials

Chancellor

The Priest in charge of a Roman Catholic chancery; also, the chief administrative officer in certain American Universities.

Chancery

A Department of the Curia Romania of the Roman Catholic Church that is responsible for issuing bulls to establish new benefices, dioceses, etc.

Chrismation

Confirmation of Byzantine era babies after their baptism, through the anointing of oil (chrism).

Cistercian Movement

A movement in Citeaux that grew out of the Cluny Movement, required monks to live under a strict interpretation of the Rule of St. Benedict, seclude themselves from the temptations of the world, reject donations from wealthy patrons, and work with hands to support themselves. Private property was banned, and ownership was held by the community. Cistercian monks were the wearers of white robes; thus, they were known as the 'white monks' (Hill, 191). (See Bernard of Clairvaux)

Bibliography

Hill, Jonathan. Zondervan Handbook to the History of Christianity. Oxford: Lion Publishing, 2006.

Civilized

Society form after it evolves into the highest civilization according to Herbert Spencer.

Clay Inscriptions

Writings upon clay found in archaeological digs are usually associated with diplomatic communications and royal archives. They were also used for general purposes (inventories, economic record-keeping) because they were inexpensive and durable writing material.

Climacus, John

(John of the Ladder) was a popular writer of the early seventh century; today his work is read every Lent in Orthodox monasteries, which makes him one of the most read spiritual writers of the church. In his Ladder of Perfection, he described a progression from an active life to a contemplative one as a ladder to be climbed to God, by eradicating vice and adopting virtue, a slow process made easier as one grows closer to Him.

Cluniac Movement

The founding of a new monastery at Cluny by William 'the Pious, duke of Aquitaine. The movement grew and popular communities were scattered throughout France, Spain and the Holy Roman Empire. The movement was established upon the Benedictine Rule (See Rule of St. Benedict), and the Cluny monks were encouraged to develop a personal spirituality, engage in common worship and work in manual labor.

Codex

A book made with pages stitched together. Codices can be written on both sides of the page. Early Christians often used these as the Jews continued the use of scrolls; probably because after they moved from easily rolled parchment made of animal skins to the more difficult-to-roll papyrus.

Codex Sinaiticus

The oldest complete copy of the New Testament in existence, on display at the British Library in London.

Codex Vaticanus

Slightly older that the Codex Sinaiticus, but incomplete; it contains most of the Old Testament, but is missing some of the New. It is held by the Vatican in Rome.

Cognate Languages

Languages having affinities with the Biblical languages.

Commitment

A decision to embrace an obligation or effort whose principles or beliefs are based upon emotions, mind, and will (See Ethics)

Comte, Auguste

(19 January 1798 – 5 September 1857) The founder of Sociology, Comte was a French philosopher whose doctrine focused upon "Positivism." Positivism was the idea of applying scientific method to the social world to change social principals and reform to make society a better place to live.

Conceptual Truth

Reveals who God is and what God does (See Inscriptured Revelation)

Conclusion

A claim that is made which is supported by either true or false facts.

Conflict Theory

Society is viewed as composed of groups competing for scarce resources. The capitalists have the means to produce wealth (Bourgeoisie) were in conflict with the exploited mass workers (Proletariat). Their conflict was the theory that Karl Marx developed to identify key cause for social change.

Consecrate

To set apart and make sacred and dedicated to the service of the LORD God.

Consecration

The dedication to the service of the LORD God. 2. (Rom. Cath. Ch.) The act of giving the sacramental nature to the Eucharistic elements of bread and wine. 3. Ordination to a sacred office

Constantine the Great

Originator and founder of the Christian Roman Empire. Constantine (C. AD 274-337) was a powerful general who had been proclaimed Caesar by his troops. Just before the Battle of the Milvian Bridge in Rome in AD 312, he was pondering which gods he should ask for assistance in battle, when he saw the sign of the cross in the sky. Constantine took the celestial advice, made war under the sign of the cross and was victorious. This victory led to his becoming the first Christian Roman emperor, and sole ruler of Rome after his defeat of Licinius in AD 324. Constantinople was founded by him in AD 330 which began the era of the Byzantine Empire. Constantine and his eastern co-ruler, Licinius, issued the Edict of Milan during his reign, which officially ended the persecution of Christians, and allowed for freedom of religion throughout the Empire.

Conviction

Strong beliefs that create solid choices of thought and action that one would be willing, if necessary, to die for (See Ethics)

Council

An assembly of leaders, gathered for purposes of establishing new policies and doctrines to organize government of people, ideas, doctrines or belief.

Council in Trullo (Quinisext Council)

(Not considered a Ecumenical Council by the Western Churches) Called in 692 to address matters of discipline by amendment to the 5th and 6th councils, and the Biblical canon.

Council of Chalcedon

(The Fourth Ecumenical Council) of the church was called to debate the nature of God in 451. Jesus was declared to have had two natures from birth, one divine and one human, and combined in equal portions within the single being of Jesus. This council upheld the statements of faith from the Councils of Nicea and Constantinople and reemphasized the decision of the Council of Ephesus. It was held in Chalcedon (Modern Kadikoy, Turkey) when called by the emperor Marcian to reject Monophysite heresy, and to approve the Nicaea and Constantinople Creeds. The council position eventually split Christendom into three parts; in the middle were those who accepted Chalcedon and became the orthodox majority in Byzantium, the Monophysites, and the Nestorian Church. They adopted the Chalcedonian Creed which described the hypostatic union of the two natures of Christ as human and divine. It also reinstated those deposed in 449, and elevated Constantinople and Jerusalem to the status of Patriarchs.

Council of Constantinople (First)

(Second Ecumenical Council) Called by Emperor Theodosius I in 381. The council declared the Trinitarian doctrine of the equality of Father, Son and Holy Spirit as expressed by the Nicene Creed.

Council of Constantinople (Fourth, Eastern Orthodox)

(Eighth Ecumenical Council) Restored Photius to the See of Constantinople and condemned the double-procession doctrine concerning the Holy Spirit in 879-880. (This council is accepted by the Eastern Orthodox Church but not regarded as Ecumenical by the Roman Catholic Church.)

Council of Constantinople (Fourth, Roman Catholic)

(Eighth Ecumenical Council) Fourth Council of Constantinople was called by Emperor Basil I in 869-870, to excommunicate St. Photius, resulting in increased animosity between the Western and Eastern churches. It deposed Patriarch Photios I of Constantinople and reinstated St. Ignatius. (This council is accepted by the Roman Catholic Church but rejected as a robber council by the Eastern Orthodox Church.)

Council of Constantinople (Second)

(Fifth Ecumenical Council) Second Council of Constantinople was called by Emperor Justinian I in 553. The council endorsed the edict of Justinian's, lending support to Monophysitism, which diminished the earlier Council of Chalcedon. It repudiated the Three Chapters as Nestorian, condemned Origen of Alexandria, and decreed Theopaschite Formula.

Council of Constantinople (Third)

(Sixth Ecumenical Council) Third Council of Constantinople was called by Emperor Constantine IV Pogonatus in 680. The council condemned Monotheletism and Monoenergism and endorsed the view of Maximus that Christ had two wills, one human and one divine, acting in perfect accord.

Council of Ephesus (First)

(Third Ecumenical Council) Repudiated Nestorianism and Pelagianism, proclaimed the Virgin Mary as the Theotokos ("God-bearer"), and reaffirmed the Nicene Creed in the year 431.

Council of Ephesus (Second)

(Not and Ecumenical Council) Declared Eutyches orthodox and attacked his opponents. Originally convened as an Ecumenical council in 449, it is not recognized as such, and is actually denounced as a "Robber Council" by the Chalcedonians (Catholics, Eastern Orthodox, Protestants)

Council of Lateran (Fourth)

The Fourth Council of the Lateran (1215) (Ecumenical Council) handled issues related to transubstantiation, papal primacy, and conduct of clergy. Established norm expectations that Jews and Muslims should wear a special dress to enable them to be distinguished from Christians.


Council of Nicea (First)

(First Ecumenical Council) First church council was called by Emperor Constantine in 325, to decide the nature of Jesus. The council ruled that Jesus was both human and divine, and that he was equivalent to the same substance as God the Father. Arianism was made a heresy by their decision, and the Nicene Creed encapsulated this theological doctrine.

Council of Nicea (Second)

(Seventh Ecumenical Council) Restored the veneration of icons which had been condemned at the Council of Hieria, 754, and repudiated iconoclasm. (This council is rejected by some Protestant denominations, which condemned the veneration of icons)

Council of the Lateran (Fifth)

The Fifth Council of the Lateran (1512-1517) (Ecumenical Council) attempted to reform the Church.  Declared the immortality of the soul as dogma.


Council of the Lateran (First)

The First Council of the Lateran (1123) (Ecumenical Council) confirmed the concordat of Worms.

Council of the Lateran (Second)

The Second Council of the Lateran (1139) (Ecumenical Council) regulated clerical dress, prohibited clerical marriages and declared them to be invalid, punished attacks on clerics by excommunication.

Council of the Lateran (Third)

The Third Council of the Lateran (1179) (Ecumenical Council) limited papal candidates to cardinals alone, condemned simony, forbade the promotion of anyone to the episcopate before the age of thirty.


Creation

The making of all things by the LORD God, Jesus Christ and His Holy Spirits. (See Theistic Evolution)

Cult

A social or religious group with unique beliefs, a deviation of social standards, fighting against conformance, and under the control of individual(s) who use their power to dictate belief and activities of others. A religious cult sect has a false or inadequate basis for salvation, and a false expression of authority.

Culture

Original meaning to "cultivate the ground," has expanded to include the worldview of a particular group's behavior that is learned and transmitted by symbols consisting of rites, artifacts, language, etc. Culture formation includes the creation, cultivation, and consumption of spiritual or secular works by human beings in an intimate ordering, forming, interpreting, and reshaping of the world they live in together as they share the artifacts of their association.

Culture Circles

3 - Trusted small group of people that you trust and can share  values, needs, talents, goals, and dreams.

12 - Larger small group that have skills, talents, and possessions that will readily help the small group's goals

120 - Waiting to join and be compelled to give time, energy, and resources

Culture Circles exist in all areas of life.  Small or big changes depend upon the 3, 12, 120 rule, whether recognized as such or not. Though the numbers do not need to be exact, the frequency of these predictable numbers guarantee potential change in some realm of the culture of 3's circle of life.

Cuneiform

Earliest known writing that is engraved on interconnected clay wedges

Curea Romana

The body of congregations and offices of the Roman Catholic Church that assist the Pope in governmental administrative duties
D

Dedicate

To set apart and consecrate to the LORD God for a holy work.

Dedication

The religious ceremony announcing the intent of the parents to raise a child in accordance with their beliefs, and involving the church community in playing a part in the child's spiritual upbringing. It is often mistaken for infant baptism because water is sprinkled upon the infant in the ceremony.

Deductive

A type of argument that offers a premise(s) which seems to provide complete support for the conclusion. A deductive argument is known as a valid argument when all its premises are true, which makes the conclusion true.(See Inductive)

Deductive Fallacy

A deductive argument that is invalid (true premises but false conclusion). (See Inductive Fallacy)

Denarius (Denarii)

A Roman coin paid a day's wages of a slave in New Testament Bible Times.

Desire

The yearning to have what is loved1 (See Joy, Fear, Sadness)

 

 

Reference:

Saint Augustine, Bishop of Hippo, The City of God, trans., Marcus Dods, Modern Library Paperback ed. (New York: Random House, Inc., 2000), 449.

 

Devil

The fallen angel Lucifer (Satan) who is at enmity with the LORD God, and has the power to afflict man with spiritual corruption which brings death, and separates men from God through false witness and spiritual misleading.

Devil's Advocate

An official appointed to present critical arguments against proposed beatification or canonization.

Devils Mark

A blemish, scar or mark on the body of a person who has made a compact with a devil.

Diatessron

A compilation of the four Gospels into a single narrative by a second-century theologian named Tatian. Used in the Syriac-speaking early Christian churches.

Diocese

An ecclesiastical district under the jurisdiction of a bishop

Dionysian Works

First cited amid the Christological disputes of AD 520-40 during a colloquy at Constantinople in AD532. The corpus includes three treatises which are the celestial hierarchy, the ecclesiastical hierarchy and the divine names. The document has caused questioning over its authenticity; yet, the writings were considered apostolic and highly authoritative for many centuries. The author of the late fifth or early sixth century writings is in not known exactly, but he is referred to with a pseudo of Dionysius the Areopagite (Hill, 103).

Dionysius, the Areopagite

Pseudo author of the Dionysian works that were the corpus containing three treatises. The work was translated into Latin by John (the Scot) Eriugena in the ninth century. His writings profoundly influenced medieval theology and spirituality and through time impacted Alber the Great, Thomas Aquinas, and mystic Richard of St. Victor, Bonaventure. The Gothic architecture of Saint-Denis in Paris is also named for the author-become-missionary, attributed to his uplifting illumination (Hill, 103).

Bibliography

Hill, Jonathan. Zondervan Handbook to the History of Christianity. Oxford: Lion Publishing, 2006.

Diptych

Official list of bishops (past and present) who should be prayed for. A double catalog of the living, and on the other side deceased, names of ecclesiastics and benefactors of the church; a catalog of saints

Discernment

The ability to tell between what is right and almost right.

Discipline

Instruction (direction that is often verbal, sometimes harsh and corrective), Inspiration (aggressively and simultaneously convicting and encouraging) and Intervention (corrects and restores both verbally and physically) are the three components to discipline functions directed by leaders.

Dispensationalism

Belief in a historical progression of revelation by the LORD God about His Being, Works and Will through His covenanted Word.

Divination

A soothsayers attempt to foretell future events or discover hidden mysteries by occult or supernatural means.

Divine

Pertaining to the LORD God that which is religious, sacred and befitting Him.

Divine Healing

A healing as a result of a sacred supernatural and miraculous intervention of the LORD God, in response to prayer, faith, hope or His Will.

Divine Names, The

The longest work in the corpus within the Dionysian works which presents the names of God to bring union with Him.

Divine Right of Kings

The right to rule established directly by the LORD God, and not from the consent of the people.

Divini Redemptoris

(Latin for Divine Redemption) The opening words and title of the encyclical of Pope Pius XI issued in 1937 on Communism

Divining Rod

A forked branch from a hazel tree used to locate underground water. Also called a dowsing rod.

Divinity School

A Protestant seminary

Doctrine

The principles of a belief system that are taught; the study of the things of the LORD God should arise from the Bible alone.

Doctrine of Jesus Christ

The six principles of sin, faith, water baptism, Holy Spirit baptism, resurrection and judgment taught by Jesus Christ to his followers to establish a solid foundation to prepare for deeper growth and learning about the LORD God, and His Will and Ways. (Hebrews 6:1-3)

Dogma

When ecumenical councils deal with matters of faith, the resulting edicts are known as "symbols" or "dogmas." Those decisions that regard organizational, disciplinary, or procedural matters are known as "canons."1

1Ferguson, Everett. Church History Volume One: From Christ to Pre-Reformation. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2005, 211.

Dominicans

One of two mendicant orders (see Franciscans), founded shortly before the Fourth Lateran Council forbade more orders, was one of the last great religious orders of the Middle Ages. Dominicans were disciples of Dominic, and preached to the Albigenses. Their order resembled the Franciscans as they owned nothing and traveled about; however, their focus was on preaching and maintaining the correct belief with an emphasis on intellectual pursuits. The Dominicans wore white with black cloaks and were known as 'black friars' (Hill, 193, 194).

Bibliography

Hill, Jonathan. Zondervan Handbook to the History of Christianity. Oxford: Lion Publishing, 2006.

Donatism

A fourth century rebellion against the encroachments of Christian sacralism, or Constantinianism with an effort to preserve membership to the Church based on "personal faith" rather than an all-inclusive participation through the dictums of a state.1

 

Reference:

1 Leonard Verduin, The Reformers and Their Stepchildren (Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans Pub. Co., 1964), 33.

Double Predestination

The belief that the LORD God determines some people towards salvation and some towards damnation. (See Prelapsarianism)
E

Ebionism

A movement of Jews which believed in the Lord Jesus Christ until the fourth century; however, they regarded Jesus Christ as simply a human being and nothing more. They believed that Jesus replaced the sacrifice in the Temple, with the requirement to obey the law through his teachings. They regarded Paul and the Gentile form of Christianity as a heretical movement. The Jewish Christian movement existed around Jerusalem and perhaps Persia; to Christians, they were considered a minor, heretical sect. (Hill, 64)

Bibliography

Hill, Jonathan. Zondervan Handbook to the History of Christianity. Oxford: Lion Publishing, 2006.

Ecclesiastic

A person in a religious order.

Edict of Milan

Issued by Constantine and his eastern co-ruler, Licinius, the Edict of Milan officially ended all persecution and allowed freedom of religion throughout the Roman Empire.

Education (Christian)

"The deliberate, systematic, and sustained divine and human effort to share or appropriate the knowledge, values, attitudes, skills, sensitivities, and behaviors that comprise or are consistent with the Christian faith.  It fosters the change, renewal, and reformation of persons, groups, and structures by the power of the Holy Spirit to conform to the revealed will of God as expressed in the Old and New Testaments and preeminently in the person of Jesus Christ, as well as any outcomes of that effort."1

1 Robert W. Pazmino, Foundational Issues in Christian Education, 2nd ed. (Grand Rapids: Baker, 1987), p. 87.

Epigrapher

A student or interpreter of archaeological inscriptions

Essnes

A Jewish social-religious sect whose members, like the Sadducees, considered themselves to be the true descendants of Sadok, the high priest of Solomon. They rejected the temple priests as corrupt; only priests affiliated with their sect were deemed pure. Founded by a man they refer to as the "Teacher of Righteousness," they established a semi-monastic community near the Dead Sea. In 1947, leather scrolls sealed in hermetically sealed jars, in the Essene community of Qumran were discovered by a shepherd boy. The Wady Qumran Manuscripts, known as the "Dead Sea Scrolls", dated between c. 200 B.C. and A.D. 66-70, contain the oldest extant Hebrew manuscripts as well as documents unique to the Essene sect. The Essenes belief in the immediate coming of God's Kingdom was connected to their confidence in the physical resurrection of the body. They were preoccupied with the end-of-days, the nearness of God and the need for repentance. The Essenes thought they were the first generation of God's people, preparing to meet the prophesized Jewish Messiah in their lifetime.

Eternity

The reality that one can begin at any given point and go outward and yet never arrive. (Contrast - Infinity)

Ethics

The principles of right and wrong that guide moral duty, obligation, and decision making.

Ethic levels range from smallest to largest strength order.The stronger the level for the basis of ethics, the more effective and true the ethics become:

1) Idea - An attractive thought, concept, or theory that is uniquely novel to the thinker

2) Opinion - An estimation, judgment, or idea that is tied to emotions

3) Belief - A faith, strong inclination, or principle that is based upon thoughtful reflection without emotional weight

4) Commitment - A decision to embrace an obligation or effort whose principles or beliefs are based upon emotions, mind, and will

5) Conviction - Strong beliefs that create solid choices of thought and action that one would be willing, if necessary, to die for

6) Spiritual Conviction - Ethics that do not change and are based upon a foundation that is beyond the personal preferences of an individual. The Word of God is the only foundation of Truth that true spiritual conviction is based.

Ethiopian Jews

The Axumite Jewish empire in Ethiopia was started by Manelik, storied son King Solomon and the Queen of Sheba, according to an ancient myth. The Jewish Axumites say that when Moses led the Hebrews out of Egypt, some of them had gone south instead of east, claiming Ethiopia to be the holy land of God. Pharisaic Judaism did not reach Ethiopia, so the Jewish religion was based solely on the Torah and never developed a rabbinical law. Legend speaks of the hiding of the Ark of the Covenant, which, which was thought that Solomon had given to Manelik for safekeeping on the shores of Lake Tana, the source of the Blue Nile (Hill, 106). (See Manelik)

Bibliography

Hill, Jonathan. Zondervan Handbook to the History of Christianity. Oxford: Lion Publishing, 2006.

Eucharist

The sacrament of the Lord Jesus Christ's last supper commemorated in Christian ceremony.

Eusebius of Caesarea

A Christian writer and historian who lived in the first half of the fourth century. He is noted for his book The Life of Constantine which he wrote following personal interviews with the first Christian Roman Emperor, Constantine the Great. He is also known for his final book of Ecclesiastical History which accounts the church from its early days to his own time. His book Panegyric to Constantine sings rapturous praises for Constantine as an earthly image of the divine monarchy that exists halfway between heaven and earth.

Evangelical

A focus on the authority of the four Gospels with emphasis on salvation by faith in the atoning death of Jesus Christ through personal conversion, and the spreading of this message throughout the world, according to the Great Commission of Jesus Christ.

Evolution

See Theistic Evolutionism.

Exorcism

The act of expelling an evil spirit through the invoking of the name and authority of Jesus Christ and his command to leave the possessed body.

Exorcist

A strong and faithful Christian who commands evil spirits to leave the body of the possessed. 2) The second rank of four minor orders in the Roman Catholic Church.
F

Factual Error

Wrong about facts without reaching the level of fallacy in an argument.

Faith

The condition of believing and trusting in a perceived truth. Christian faith is the substance of things hoped for, and the evidence of things not seen, through the promise of eternal life through Jesus Christ (Hebrews 11).

Fallacy

An error in reasoning. It is an argument in which the conclusion is not supported by the premise(s).

Fallacy - Ad Hominem

Also known as Ad Hominem Abusive, Personal Attack

A fallacy in which a claim or argument is rejected because of a personal issue of the presenter of the claim or argument.

1. Person A makes claim X.
2. Person B attacks character, circumstances or actions of Person A
3. Fallacy - Person A's claim is judged false

Fallacy - Ad Hominem Tu Quoque

Also known as "You Too Fallacy"

When an argument is concluded false because it is inconsistent with previous actions or words.

1. Person A makes claim X
2. Person B points out the inconsistent past actions or claims removes the chance of truth concerning claim X
3. Fallacy: Inconsistent past claim makes claim X false.

A hypocrite can still make a truthful claim as long as there is not a pair of inconsistent claims together where only one can be truth.

Fasting

An abstinence of eating in discipline to approach and know God more intimately.

Father God

The LORD God as Father reigns with providential care over His universe, His creatures, and the flow of the stream of human history according to the purposes of His grace. He is all powerful, all knowing, all loving, and all wise. God is Father in truth to those who become children of God through the Spirit of Adoption by their faith in Jesus Christ.

Fear

The fleeing from opposition to what is loved1 (See Joy, Desire, Sadness)

 

 

Reference:

Saint Augustine, Bishop of Hippo, The City of God, trans., Marcus Dods, Modern Library Paperback ed. (New York: Random House, Inc., 2000), 449.

Filioque Clause

A disputed clause that was added to the Nicene Creed that formed a divisive chasm between the Eastern churches and the West during the Middle Ages. In the East believers declared their faith in the Holy Spirit 'who proceeds from the father', while in the West the Holy Spirit is professed, 'who proceeds from the father and the Son' (in Latin: filoque). By the time of the split of the Roman Catholic Church from the Eastern Orthodox Church in 1054, it became part of the Western creed and a grievance of the East.

Font

A symbol of a water fountain, it is a receptacle in a church that contains the water used in sprinkled baptism or holds the blessed holy water used in religious ceremony.

Form Criticism

Hermeneutic interpretation of Biblical text that identifies the original setting and attempts to isolate and identify the type of source of the information. (See Hermeneutics)

Four-Fold Scripture Analysis

Thomas Aquinas developed the four-fold sense of Scripture, with the Literal sense rooted foundationally to the other senses, which are the Allegorical sense (Spiritual Meaning), Tropological sense (Moral Meaning), and Allegorical sense (Eschatological Meaning).

Franciscans (Friars)

One of two mendicant orders (see Dominicans), founded shortly before the Fourth Lateran Council forbade more orders, was one of the last great religious orders of the Middle Ages. The Franciscans were founded upon the preaching of Francis of Assisi, who petitioned Innocent III for permission to found the order of Friars Minore in 1210. The Italian friars soon became a powerful tool for the papacy, as they gave the pope the ability to direct their movements without a bishop’s approval. They owned nothing, and begged for support as they preached among people they met in their travels. The Friars practice was focused upon their devotion to Christ through the practice of poverty, and they were popular among the poor, outcasts, and sick. The Franciscans wore grey robes and were known as the 'Grey Friars' (Hill, 193, 194).

Bibliography

Hill, Jonathan. "Early Christianity: A World Religion." Handbook to the History of Christianity. Zondervan, 2006.
G

Genizah Room

A lumber room of the Synagogue where the worn or damaged manuscripts of the Bible are traditionally stored

Genuflection

A deep bow to one or both knees is a sign of devotion to the presence of the Blessed Sacrament. Genuflection is also done at the mention of the incarnation by the Holy Ghost of the Virgin Mary within the liturgy of the Roman Catholic Church, and in the churches of the Anglican Communion.

Ghassanid

Monophysite Christians, originally from the southern Arabian peninsula that carved out an important kingdom in the desert east of the River Jordan, in what is now modern-day Syria, Palestine and Jordan. They were significant in Middle Eastern politics, however, their ruling phylarch governed only by permission of the Byzantine emperor (Hill, 102).

Bibliography

Hill, Jonathan. "Early Christianity: A World Religion." Handbook to the History of Christianity. Zondervan, 2006.

Glorification

Glorification is the culmination of salvation and is the final blessed and abiding state of the redeemed.

Salvation Phases:

Justification - Past (Phase 1) I Have Been Saved from the penalty of sin (FREE) (Christian)

Sanctification - Present (Phase 2) I Am Being Saved from the power of sin (Costly) (Disciple)

Glorification - Future (Phase 3) I Will Be Saved from the presence of sin (Face-to-Face) (Glorified Bodies)

Glossolalia

Speaking in Tongues is stirred by the Holy Spirit in private prayer, and public praise and prayer when an interpreter is present.  The physiology of glossolalia is the stimulation of "Broca's area", the center for articulate speech in the third frontal convolution of the dominant cerebral hemisphere. First occurrance is recorded in Acts 2, on the day of Pentecost.

Gnosticism

Gnosticism was a secret religion with esoteric knowledge, which was influenced by the mystery religions in the early days of early Christian belief. The Gnostics were a host of different movements with similar ideas; some existed in the midst of 'mainstream' Christianity and others were followers of non-Christian religions. They were the biggest and most controversial movement within Christianity at the time of the early church.

Dualism, belief in two principles of good and evil which are intrinsically opposed, was common to all Gnostics. This dualism was expressed in the evil physical world and the good spiritual world. To explain evil, some imagined weaker gods, while others developed elaborate mythology to explain its existence. Ireaeus, a late second-century Christian from Anatolia, wrote a book attacking the religion, which led to the development of the standards of Orthodoxy. (Hill, 65,66)

Bibliography

Hill, Jonathan. "Early Christianity: A World Religion." Handbook to the History of Christianity. Zondervan, 2006.

God, Attributes of

The LORD God's attributes are the essential qualities that belong to Him.  His being or substance unites the multiple attributes in one entity.

Metaphysical: God self-exists, and is eternal and unchanging.

Intellectual: God is faithful, omniscient, and wise.

Ethical: God is just, merciful, and loving

Emotional: God hates evil, is compassionate and long-suffering

Existential: God is free, omnipotent, and authentic.

God is immanent in unversal providential and redemptive activity with His transcendent being.

 

Different Theological Classifications:

Strong - Absolute and Immanent

Berkhof - Incommunicable or communicable

Gill - Metaphysical or moral

Wiley - Absolute, relative, and moral

Chafer - Personal and constitutional

Gospel of John, Historical Interpretation

The gnostic influence triggered a response in Irenaeus and Tatianus to defend the historical nature of the Book of John, to remove the heretical connections brought forth. The defense of Scripture against the control of the Gnostic believers was a critical point in Christian history; so these authors become important to begin the process of winnowing the Truth of God from the heretics.

Origen's writings on the Book of John in the 3rd century infused the life, spirit and history of Christ through the Book of John.That infusion encouraged scholars to approach the Book of John not only historically, but spiritually as well, though refuting the Gnostic ideas.

Augustine's insistence that the historical life of Jesus, along with great theological concepts, and spiritual depth were an important consideration to the reading of the Fourth Gospel. This develops ideas of spiritual connections, but links them to the historical dating that is so available to interpreters through the Book of John. Augustin leads the early Church into their surety of belief that the Book of John is a historical compilation of the life of Christ.

B. F. Westcott's defense of the apostolic origins of the Book of John allows readers to directly connect the disciple's writings to Christ. Apostolic authority elevates the Book of John to the highest level of consideration and makes it crucial to base new theological ideas upon. Bultmann's demythologizing approach gave further insight in the life of Christ with a theological paradigm.[1]

Polycarp's words about how he witnessed John as he witnessed Christ, down to his appearance, words, discourse, and nature are profound.[2]He speaks of his devotion to John and his recollection as the one Christ loved the most amongst His disciples with a connection of proximity and authority to Him as John stood, walked, witnessed, loved, and cried in the presence the Lord.
_______________________
[1] Leo Percer, "Nbst615, Lecture #2: Introduction to John - Interpretations of the Fourth Gospel,"  (accessed 1/15/2015).

 [2] D.A. Carson, The Gospel According to John (Grand Rapids, MI; Cambridge, UK: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1991), 26.

Grace

The unmerited, unearned favor of the LORD God, given to the elect for His purposes, according to which He regenerates, justifies, sanctifies, and glorifies sinners. It is the glorious display of God's sovereign goodness, and is infinitely wise, holy, and unchangeable. All true believers endure to the end. Those whom God has accepted in Christ, and sanctified by His Spirit, will never fall away from the state of grace, but shall persevere to the end. Believers may fall into sin through neglect and temptation, whereby they grieve the Spirit, impair their graces and comforts, and bring reproach on the cause of Christ and temporal judgments on themselves; yet they shall be kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation.


Sufficient Grace is adequate from here to eternity which flows from God to believers through Christ.

Irresistible Grace is the grace of God that cannot be rejected.

Efficacious Grace is grace that effects the purpose for which it is given by God; what he purposes, He will.

Prevenient Grace precedes all human decision and begins with God who gives to those He chooses.

Special Grace is favor God gives to redeem, sanctify, glorify His people in only His elect who have faith in Christ.

Greek

The official language of the Roman world in the time of Jesus Christ

Gymnosophists

Members of an ancient indian sect that were known for both their nakedness and their wisdom, given to asceticism and contemplation.

 

H

Hagia Sophia

A domed church in Istanbul that is a masterpiece of Byzantine architecture that was designed under Justinian I by Anthemius of Tralles and Isidorus of Miletus and completed in six years (AD 532-37). The marbled piers that support the dome are obscured by brilliant light that shines through windows in the walls above the galleries, giving the illusion that the canopy is floating in the air, and expressing the idea that heaven and earth could meet at a certain well-defined point.

Hallel

A chant of praise derived from Psalms 113-118 and used in the celebration of Jewish holidays such as Passover, Shabuoth, Sukkoth, Hanukkah, and Rosh Hodesh. The priests chanted these praises in the Temple while the Passover lamb was being slain, which is sometimes called the "Egyptian Hallel." The praise songs were also sung by the Levite priests in chanted verse by verse, and the worshippers would repeat the verses or sing Hallelujahs in response.

“This [is] the day [which] the LORD hath made; we will rejoice and be glad in it” (Psalm 118:24) is a hallel of Christian tradition in celebration and praise, especially during the beginning of Holy Week on Palm Sunday, as the Faithful remember Jesus Christ's Messianic entrance into Jerusalem as our King.

Hamartiology

The study of the doctrine of sin

Hapax Legomenon

Words that only appear once in the Bible, without any certain meaning or translation

Haruspex

A ancient Roman religious official who examined the entrails of sacrificial animals to pronounce and interpret omens.

Hebrew

The holy language of the Jews is the earliest recorded Semitic language that all other semitic formed languages (Amharic, Arabic, Aramaic, Akkadian, Ge'ez, Hebrew, Ethiopic, Phoenician, Maltese, Tigre, Tigrinya and others) are based. The Torah is written in Biblical Hebrew and it was one of the languages spoken at the time of Jesus Christ. A modern form of Hebrew is currently spoken by Israelites, and has been used in prayer and study throughout Jewish communities for over two thousand years.

Heilsgeschichte

The history of salvation

Hellenist

Person who spoke Greek and conducted life in a Greek way, but were without Greek ancestry

Hermeneutics

The art and science of Biblical interpretation.  Modern approaches include:

Textual Criticism - Attempts to evaluate text as close as possible to the original texts of the manuscript copies of the Bible books.

Historical Criticism - Analyzes written works with the measure of time and place, the place of composition and where it was written.

Source Criticism - Tries to determine other sources used by the author to write the biblical document.

Form Criticism - Identifies the original setting and attempts to isolate and identify the type of source of the information.

Redaction Criticism - Determines the premise (reason) that the author writes.

Literary Criticism - Interested in the text as a unit, approaches include examining the narrative through plots, themes, characters and nuances of text, rhetorical approaches with an examination of arguments within the text, or other specialty criticisms based upon specific interests like feminism, third-world, non-American, or structure variances.

 

Herodians

A Jewish sect and political party, who embraced the worldly life and social customs of Roman occupation in Israel, supported the Herodian rulers in their government. Orthodox Jews thought them to be compromisers because they recognized the rights of Rome and cooperated with Roman authorities, a stance shared with the Sadducees.

Hesychasm

A state of nothingness that Monks of the 13th and 14th centuries attempted to achieve through breathing techniques and repetitive prayers to achieve a state of self-hypnosis. This practice was intended to clear the mind of the monk in order for him to see God by emptying their mind of thoughts, into which God might move. The practice was based on Jesus Christ’s instructions in the Gospel of Matthew 6:6 to “enter into thy closet” to pray.

Historical Criticism

Hermaneutical interpretation of Bible texts through the analysis of written works with the measure of time and place, the place of composition, and the place where it was written from. (See Hermeneutics)

Holocaust

A great devastation and destruction, especially by fire, regrettably witnessed in our lifetime when European Jews were systematically exterminated in mass within the Nazi concentration camps prior to and during World War II. May we never forget.

Holy Ghost

The Holy Spirit is the fully divine Spirit of the LORD GOD, sent to comfort believers when Jesus Christ ascended to Heaven. He inspired holy men of old to write the Scriptures. Through illumination, He enables men to understand truth. He exalts Christ. He convicts men of sin, of righteousness, and of judgment. He cultivates Christian character, comforts believers, and bestows the spiritual gifts by which they serve the LORD God through His church. He seals the believer unto the day of final redemption. His presence in the Christian is the guarantee that God will bring the believer into the fullness of the stature of Christ. He enlightens and empowers the believer and the church in worship, evangelism, and service.

Homoeans

Belief that the Son is like the Father.1

Also see Homoousians, Homoiousians, and Anomoeans.

1Ferguson, Everett. Church History Volume One: From Christ to Pre-Reformation. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2005, 201.

Homoiousians

Belief that the Son is of similar substance to the Father.1

Also see Homoousians, Homoeans, and Anomoeans.

1Ferguson, Everett. Church History Volume One: From Christ to Pre-Reformation. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2005, 201.

Homoousians

Belief that the Son is the same substance with the Father.1

Also see Homoiousians, Homoeans, and Anomoeans.

1Ferguson, Everett. Church History Volume One: From Christ to Pre-Reformation. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2005, 201.

Humanism

A philosophy or attitude that centers upon human being’s achievements and interests of natural life as being more important than a spiritual life directed by the LORD God. Humanists place mankind at the center of the universe, bestowing supreme value to the human being and their potential to solve all problems of life.

Hypostatic Union

The view that the Holy Spirit simultaneously brought into being a human nature and substantially united it to the person of the Son so that the Son actually came to exist as man, with both natures of both God and human combined into one. Cyril of Alexandria (AD 376-444) formulated this description to defend the one nature of Christ. It is this idea that is represented by the Catholic Church as Mary being the "Mother of God" in their belief.

Cyril's opponent in belief was Nestorius, who taught that Christ had two natures. Later on, Eutyches took Cyril's teaching to extremes and not only denied the dual nature of Christ, but argued also that the single nature of Jesus was purely divine. Flavian, patriarch of Constantinople condemned Eutyches, and Leo, bishop of Rome got into the fray with a famous letter known as the Tome. Leo taught that even after the incarnation, Christ retains two natures, but he remains a single person that is identical with the second Person of the Trinity. Thus, Christ had two natures while he remained a single person, a middle way approach that rejected the extremes of both ends.

The Creed of Chalcedon, a supposed elucidation of the Creed of Nicaea, agreed with Cyril that Christ was one person, identical with the pre-existent Son, but it also agreed with Leo that after the incarnation he possessed two distinct natures, one human and one divine.

The Nicene Creed expresses the belief of most Christians today (Hill, 97-99).

Bibliography

Hill, Jonathan. "Early Christianity: A World Religion." Handbook to the History of Christianity. Zondervan, 2006.

Hypothesis

A proposed unverified law (See Theory)
I

Icon

Highly stylized portrait of Christ or the saints, intended to focus the mind of the viewer upon their subject and encourage imitation of their virtues. The beautiful icons of the Byzantine era were created to become literal windows to Heaven, work miracles. and to look upon its representation. Icons did not portray the presence of God in people's lives, but rather, they enabled the presence of God to come to believers, as their beauty was contemplated. The veneration of the idols suggested that through them God was worshipped; just as through the man Jesus, God was worshipped. (Hill, 135, 141).

Bibliography

Hill, Jonathan. "Early Christianity: A World Religion." Handbook to the History of Christianity. Zondervan, 2006.

Iconclasm

The deliberate destruction of religious icons within a culture by the culture often as a result of major domestic, political, or religious changes.

Idea

An attractive thought, concept, or theory that is uniquely novel to the thinker (See Ethics)

Idol

A material object or image representing a false deity that is given worship, adoration, or devotion

Idolater

A worshiper of an idol

Idolothyta

The institutional practice that places meat before the Idol.

Idols of the Cave

Fallacies derived from prejudice and personal biased thought. For example, human beings have weak reasoning abilities due to particular personality traits, likes, and dislikes.(See Idols of the Mind)

Idols of the Marketplace

(Also called Idols of the Forum) - Fallacies derived from cultural customs. An example might be confusions between the language of science and the language of common use that cause conflict in meanings.(See Idols of the Mind)

Idols of the Mind

Sir Francis Bacon listed four Idols of the Mind which obstructed the path of correct scientific reasoning for his Baconian method of research of phenomenon (a precursor to the development of the scientific method). These four idols included:

1) Idols of the Tribe (Idola Tribus) - Fallacies derived from the nature of man and his social organization.

2) Idols of the Cave (Idola Specus) - Fallacies derived from prejudice and personal biased thought.

3) Idols of the Marketplace (Idola Fori) (Also called Idols of the Forum) - Fallacies derived from cultural customs.

4) Idols of the Theater - Fallacies resulting from traditional beliefs and techniques.

Idols of the Theater

Fallacies resulting from traditional beliefs and techniques. Following after academic dogma and failing to ask questions of the common and natural world is an example of this.(See Idols of the Mind)

Idols of the Tribe

Fallacies derived from the nature of man and his social organization. Human beings are apt to perceive order in a system that does not exist, and follow after that false preconception. (See Idols of the Mind)

Impassible

Incapable of suffering; God is impassible, thus patripassianism is rejected according to the old catholic fathers.  There is a distinction between the Father and the Son, solving the problem of salvation by suffering that allowed Christ's suffering while reflecting the LORD God's incapability of suffering.1

1Ferguson, Everett. Church History Volume One: From Christ to Pre-Reformation. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2005, 142.

Impiety

The lack of respect and reverence for the LORD God and His sacred things

Imprecatory

A call for a curse with vivid words of judgment upon an enemy in prayer, song, or psalm in desire for justice

Inductive

A type of argument which the premise appears to provide some degree of support (but not complete) for the conclusion. A good inductive argument is cogent if the premises are true, and the conclusion is considered likely to be true. (See Deductive)

Inductive Fallacy

Arguments which the premise(s) do not provide enough support for the conclusion, making it unlikely that the conclusion is true. Inductive Fallacy is usually less formal than deductive fallacy, and is at the level of simple argument.

Infinity

The reality that one can begin at any given point and go inward and yet never arrive (Contrast - Eternity)

Inscriptions

Past written remains of words uncovered by archaeological activity

Inscriptured Revelation

Discloses some truth about God's essence in itself.

Insipid

Boring, pointless, dull, or bland

Insipience

Foolish and without wisdom

Interdict

Roman Catholic ecclesiastical withdrawal of sacraments of baptism, marriage or burial, and a suspense of church operations from a country; also a censure used against a person. An effective tool used by Pope Innocent III to move European politicians to reform and conform to his will (Hill, 192).

Reference:

Hill, Jonathan. "Early Christianity: A World Religion." Handbook to the History of Christianity. Zondervan, 2006

Irascible

Easily provoked to anger.

Irenaeus

A late second-century Christian from Anatolia who encountered Gnosticism in AD 180. He hated Gnosticism and the way it denigrated the material world; he believed that the LORD God took an active interest; so he wrote a scathing book to describe and attack its existence. He disagreed with the way it split Christ, refusing to recognize his humanity, and the way the belief distinguished the differences between the Old and New Testament Gods. Irenaeus insisted that Christianity must be rooted in Old Testament times and its Jewish past, and was not part of a "mystery" or secretively handed-down tradition of faith. His stance led to the setting of standards that would become orthodoxy of the Church. In his book, "Against heresies", Irenaeus identified certain churches as bearing apostolic tradition, and he declared the church of Rome should be the primary authority. (Hill, 65-68)

Reference:

Hill, Jonathan. "Early Christianity: A World Religion." Handbook to the History of Christianity. Zondervan, 2006.

Irenics

Formal peace-seeking efforts of a part of Christian theology that are concerned with the reconcilment of different denominations and sects.

Israel, Ancient Faith

The Ancient Faith of Israel consisted of:1

1. Non-Jerusalem Temple Jewish Movement

2. Samaritan Israelites

3. Hellenistic Judaism

4. Jewish Jesus Movement

5. Sadducees/Herodians

6. Historic Christianity

7. Pharisaic movement

8. Essene Judaism

9. Militant Judaism

10. People of the Land

11. Qumranic Judaism

12. Unknown types

The two major surviving siblings that retained and increased their religious/cultural force from the Ancient Faith of Israel were Judaism (Proto-Rabbinical) and Christianity (Non-Jewish). Though Samaritans and Christian Jews also survived, they eventually lost their influence as specific groups in comparison with Judaism and Christianity.

___________________________

1Traditional Paradigms Reconsidered in an ETeacher Biblical course by Dr. Eli Lizorkin-Eyzenberg, 2014,at https://student.eteachergroup.com/course-details/C53106


J

Jack-leg

Unskilled and untrained to the accepted standards of one's profession

Jack-Mormon

A non-Mormon living amicably among active Mormons. 2. A Mormon who is not active in the church or is not adhering to the principles of Mormon belief and lifestyle.

Jacob's Ladder

The ladder which reached from earth to Heaven that was seen by Jacob in a dream (Gen 28:12)

Jacobite

A member of the Syrian Monotheistic church, which was governed by the patriarch of Antioch in the 6th century A.D.

Jesus Christ

Jesus Christ is the eternal Son of God who was expressed by His Word and begotten before the creation of the World. In His incarnation as Jesus Christ He was conceived of the Holy Spirit and born of the Virgin Mary and walked this earth in human form with the nature of man from 4 B.C. - c. A.D. 29. Jesus perfectly revealed and did the Will of God, taking upon Himself common human nature but without sin. He honored the LORD God's divine law by His personal obedience, and in His substitutionary death on the cross, He became the redeemer of of men from their sin. He was raised from the dead with a glorified body through his Resurrection and appeared to His disciples and others. He ascended into Heaven and is now seated at the right hand of God, with the nature of God within him. He is the One Mediator which effects the reconciliation between the LORD God and His people. He will return in power and glory to judge the world and to usher in a new life to come in the Kingdom of God with a new Heaven and Earth.

John, the Disciple whom Jesus Loved

John 13:21-23 the disciple "whom Jesus loved” leaned upon Christ's bosom at the Passover meal.  Peter and Judas Iscariot speak also during this account, precluding them from being the disciple of whom Jesus loved.

John 13-16 -Philip, Peter, Thomas, Judas Iscariot, or Judas the son of James cannot be "the beloved disciple” because they are mentioned alongside him in the three chapters.  Also, John 21:12 confirms that the beloved disciple is not Peter, Thomas, or Nathanael.

John 15:26-27 - Jesus speaks to his disciples about the coming Spirit of Truth that will bear witness, and lead to them bearing witness.  The actual Disciples' writings connects these witnesses to verify the apostolic authority that was granted the four Gospels by the early church.

John 19:26-27 - Jesus chooses "the disciple standing by, whom he loved” to care for his mother at His crucifixion

John 19:35 - Declares the direct witness of Christ by the author who has been there from the beginning; this precludes the "community” approach  to assigning authorship.

John 21:21-23 - Peter sees the disciple that Jesus loved following them, and identified him as the same one that leaned on his breast at the Passover supper.  This reference comes just before the confirmation of the writings by the disciple. Its positioning also suggests a connection between Peter's eyewitness testimonies as a major source towards John's Gospel.   It does preclude Peter from the authorship of the Book of John.

John 21:24-25 confirms the author of the Book of John as a disciple that is testifying of the things of Christ.

Further, when the Synoptic Gospels are compared, authorship can be narrowed down to Matthew, Simon the Zealot, James the son of Alpheus, or John the son of Zebedee. Because Peter is linked closely with John, and took part in the Resurrection search of the tomb, it is likely that the beloved disciple is part of the inner three (Peter, James, and John) that are closest to Jesus.  Since both Peter and James are named in the Book of John, it seems likely that the author is John with this circumstantial, but compelling clue.

The earliest external witness and declaration that John, son of Zebedee, wrote the Book of John comes from Irenaeus, a student of John's disciple Polycarp.  It was the traditional view of the early church for Johanean authorship, as indicated by their external writings up until the 18th century.  There is no piece of internal or external evidence that is inconsistent with naming John, the son of Zebedee as author of the Book of John.  

John, the beloved disciple of Jesus Christ, was given a unique position as witness to his ministry from the beginning.  His witness required his lifetime attention.  Unlike all other disciples, John grew old, and eventually found his way to the Island of Patmos to write the Book of Revelation.  He was not martyred quickly like all of the other original Disciples. Jesus chose one Disciple to witness not only his ministry but the arrival of the Holy Spirit, and the works of the early church in order for continuity of the message of Christ to be solidly founded and make it possible to introduce theological and typological connections that would be expounded on generations later.  Like the one survivor of a plane accident, John was that disciple with the responsibility to witness it and write it as directed by God.  The Book of John, and all of the writings of John, would be watered down, and incomprehensible if it were not written by him, the witness to all things that led to the establishment of the Christian Church.


Joy

To have and enjoy what is loved1 (See Desire, Fear, Sadness)

 

 

Reference:

Saint Augustine, Bishop of Hippo, The City of God, trans., Marcus Dods, Modern Library Paperback ed. (New York: Random House, Inc., 2000), 449.

Judaism

The monotheistic religion of the Jewish people, developed among the ancient Hebrews which believed in one transcendent LORD God who was revealed through Abraham, Moses, and the Hebrew prophets. Abraham was the father of Judaism, which combines the Jewish religion, culture and people, as worshipers of the One True JEHOVAH God. He was a wandering Aramean, and went down into Egypt to live as a foreigner, with only a few people. His descendants became a great nation, mighty and populous. The Egyptians treated them harshly with affliction and imposition of hard labor. They cried to the LORD God of their ancestors; the Lord heard the voices of His chosen people, and saw their affliction, their toll and their oppression. The LORD God brought them out of Egypt with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm, with a terrifying display of power, and with signs and wonders. The LORD God brought them into the Promised Land that flowed with milk and honey, which a part later became the nation of Israel. (Deu 26:5-9)

Judaism/Christianity Paradigms

Three Paradigms [1]

1. Better Faith Paradigm - Church triumphant, synagogue defeated.  The Eucharist made preeminent over the Law of Moses. Christians have spiritual ability to see with freedom and confidence vs. the Jew's spiritual blindness leading to misery and shame.

2. Mother-Daughter Paradigm - Judaism is the mother and Christianity her daughter.  Relies upon the idea that the Old Testament is Jewish and the New Testament Christian. Since the Old Testament predates the New Testament, it is concluded by these adherents that Judaism predated Pentecost Christianity. Christianity is said to descend from Judaism since Jesus and the early Christians were Jews.

3. Siblings Paradigm - Relatively new paradigm does not relate Judaism to be equal to the Old Testament or Christianity to be New Testament. The Mother was not Judaism, but rather, the Ancient Faith of Israel.  The Mother did not have only one child, she had many. Each child interpreted and practiced the ancient faith of Israel differently; only some survived the destruction of Jerusalem Temple and exile from the Land of Israel.

(The Ancient Faith of Israel consisted of non-Jerusalem Temple Jewish Movement, Samaritan Israelites, Hellenistic Judaism, Jewish Jesus Movement, Sadducees/Herodians, Historic Christianity, Pharisaic movement, Essene Judaism, Militant Judaism, People of the Land, Qumranic Judaism, and Unknown types). The two major surviving siblings that retained and increased their religious/cultural force from the Ancient Faith of Israel were Judaism (Proto-Rabbinical) and Christianity (Non-Jewish). Though Samaritans and Christian Jews also survived, they eventually lost their influence as specific groups in comparison with Judaism and Christianity.

Dr. Lizorkin-Eyzenberg claims Christianity is actually older as it developed through the Ancient Faith of Israel, than is Rabbinic Judaism, when the foundational document dating is recognized.  Historically, Christianity was recorded in the New Testament in the late 1st Century.  Judaism's foundational document is identified as the Mishna; it was published in the early 3rd century.

_________________

1Traditional Paradigms Reconsidered in an ETeacher Biblical course by Dr. Eli Lizorkin-Eyzenberg, 2014,at https://student.eteachergroup.com/course-details/C53106

Justification

The LORD God's gracious and full acquittal based upon principles of His righteousness of all sinners who repent and believe in Christ. Justification brings the believer unto a relationship of peace and favor with God.

Salvation Phases:

Justification - Past (Phase 1) I Have Been Saved from the penalty of sin (FREE) (Christian)

Sanctification - Present (Phase 2) I Am Being Saved from the power of sin (Costly) (Disciple)

Glorification - Future (Phase 3) I Will Be Saved from the presence of sin (Face-to-Face) (Glorified Bodies)

Justinian the Great

The greatest Byzantine emperor after the fall of Rome, Justinian was a model for all subsequent emperors. Born in AD 482, Justinian was adviser to his emperor uncle Justin, until AD 527, when he assumed the throne. Emperor Justinian recaptured much of the western half of the old Roman Empire, along with North Africa and Italy, and was involved in the creation of many magnificent and public buildings and monuments (Hill, 133).

Reference:

Hill, Jonathan. "Early Christianity: A World Religion." Handbook to the History of Christianity. Zondervan, 2006.
K

Kedusha

The Jewish prayer that is recited with feet together, rising repeatedly to the tips of their toes in leaping fashion to demonstrate their desire to get closer to Hashem.

King James Authorized Bible

Published in 1611 after the English Bishops' Bible was revised under the orders of King James I. This Bible is widely used and defended as the truest translation of the Word of God into the English language by Fundamental and Conservative Protestant faithful.

King Omri (885-874 B.C.)

1 Kings 16:21-28 makes passing reference to the wicked King Omri which built up Samaria and made it the capital of the Northern Kingdom. He was one of the most important historically confirmed rulers of his period, yet the Word of God makes only passing reference. Archaeology provides a great deal of background info about him which includes extra-biblical accounts of his exploits as recorded by his enemies.
L

Lapsed or Lapsi

Those who "fall" away from the church in times of persecution.

Lateran Councils

Five ecumenical councils of the Roman Catholic church which were held in the Lateran Palace in Rome.

First Lateran Council (1123) - (Pope Calixtus II) reiterated the condemnation of simony and forbidding clergymen to marry that were decreed in earlier ecumenical councils.

Second Lateran Council (1139) - (Pope Innocent II) ended the schism created by the election of a rival pope.

Third Lateran Council (1179) - (Pope Alexander III) established a two-thirds majority of the College of Cardinals for papal election; also condemned the heresies of the Cathari.

Fourth Lateran Council (1215) - (Pope Innocent III) Compelled Catholics to make yearly confession, prepared for a new Crusade, sanctioned the doctrine of transubstantiation, addressed the corruption within the church and enforced clerical celibacy and dignity.

Fifth Lateran Council (1512-17) - (Pope Julius II) affirmed the immortality of the soul and brought peace between Christian rulers.

Latin

The governmental language of the world in the time of Jesus Christ

Laxists

Those holding the ideal that the church is an instrument of salvation as a kind of hospital for sick souls. Conversely, Rigorists hold the belief that the Church is a congregation of saved people seperated from sin.1

1Ferguson, Everett. Church History Volume One: From Christ to Pre-Reformation. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2005, 145.

Liberation Theology

1971 term coined for the politicization of  the insignificant, marginalized, unimportant, needy, despised, and defenseless believers by some Roman Catholic priests in conflict with their Church. Peruvian priest Gustavo Gutierrez wrote one of the movement's defining books, A Theology of Liberation, which stressed the utilization of Christian based communities to take up the sword of Christ to fight social injustice, and basically ignoring the love of Christ motif. The movement was branded as Marxism by the United States government, as well as the Orthodox Church hierarchy, including Pope Francis long before he assumed the role as shepherd of the Church.  While the idea of God holding a preferential option toward the poor is a noble idea represented in Scripture, the politicization of the impoverished led them away from the teachings of the Roman Catholic Church.

Life

Energy, power of intellect, affection and will emanating from the LORD God

Lined-Out Singing

An ancient method of singing religious music which involves a leader chanting each line of text and then the congregation singing in unison without hymnals or psalters. The American colonists brought this form of
music from the British churches around the 1700's. The Old Regular Baptist Churches is one denomination that expresses songs only in this manner.

Literary Criticism

Hermeneutical interpretation that is interested in the text as a unit.  The approaches are varied and include examining the narrative through plots, themes, characters, and nuances of text, rhetorical approaches with an examination of arguments within the text, or other specialty criticism based upon specific interests like feminism, third-world, non-American, or structure variances. (See Hermeneutics)

Liturgy

Originally meaning 'work for the people,' during the Jewish Diaspora, it took on the meaning of 'work done for God'; specifically, it means praise and worship to God, usually during communal service.

LORD God

There is one and only one living and true LORD God whose name YAHWEH is most holy. He is an intelligent, spiritual, and personal Being, the Creator, Redeemer, Preserver, and Ruler of the universe. God is infinite in holiness and all other perfections. God is all powerful and all knowing; and His perfect knowledge extends to all things, past, present, and future, including the future decisions of His free creatures. To Him we owe the highest love, reverence, and obedience.

God the Father reigns with providential care over His universe, His creatures, and the flow of the stream of human history according to the purposes of His grace. He is all powerful, all knowing, all loving, and all wise. God is Father in truth to those who become children of God through the Spirit of Adoption by their faith in Jesus Christ, His only begotten Son.

The LORD God, the Lord Jesus Christ, and their Holy Spirit are in triune relationship that is best understood as One and equal in nature, Two subordinate and submissive and duties, and Three distinct and separate in person.
M

Magician

Seeks to coerce the false gods to act rather than pray to them to petition their wicked responses.

Manelik

The son of the union between King Solomon and the Queen of Sheba during her visit recorded in 1 King 10 according to the Ethiopian Jewish legend. The legend of Manelik credits him with establishing the Axumite Empire in Ethiopia, which maintained close links with the ancient Israelites. (See Ethiopian Jews)

Martyria

Shrines to the martyrs were often built upon the site of old pagan temples, the church encouraged people to shift their allegiances from the old gods to the martyrs. The architecture was normally rounded in the style of pagan temples; later on, attempts to combine the long basilica and the round baptistery or martyrion would produce the attributes of Byzantine architecture.

Marx, Karl

(May 5, 1818 – March 14, 1883) Marx was a German philosopher, political theorist, revolutionary and sociologist, who founded modern communism after writing the book The Communist Manifesto. He believed that class conflict was the key to social change, and argued that people should take active steps to change society. His theory focused upon the conflict between the Bourgeoisie (capitalists) and the Proletariat (workers).

Melkite Church

Popular Greek-oriented church chiefly of Syria and Egypt, adhering to Chalcedonian orthodoxy in preference to Monophysitism. (See Monophysite Church)

Messiah

The Lord Jesus Christ, who was the promised and expected deliverer of the Jewish people from the line of David, and the fulfillment of Messianic prophesy to Christians.

Messianic

Inspired by hope and belief in a redeeming Messiah

Messianism

Religious belief in the Messiah as redeemer

Midtribulationism

The minority belief that faithful Christians will be raptured at a three and a half year midpoint during seven years of tribulation.

Millennium

Literally a thousand years; also the name given to the era mentioned in Revelation 20:1-7.

Miracle

A supernatural interruption of nature.

Mitzvot

Derives from the root word 'Tzivah' which means "to command'. The Mitzvot (plural form of Mitzvah) are the 613 commandments found in the Torah (Five Books of Moses). There are thought to be 248 positive commandments that command actions are performed and 365 negative commandments that command doers to refrain from actions. Many of the laws are concerned with purity and sacrifice and are only applicable when the Temple stands in Jerusalem. Generally, there are only 270 Mitzvots (48 positive, 222 negative) that are applicable to everyone today. According to Jewish tradition, when the Temple is rebuilt and the Messiah comes, all 613 Mitzvot will be restored.

Modalism

The naive view that the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit were successive activities and revelations of one God thereby suggesting that the LORD God Father suffered upon the cross and was crucified by man.  This teaching is also known as Monarchianism, or in the derogatory sense, Patripassianism.1

1Ferguson, Everett. Church History Volume One: From Christ to Pre-Reformation. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2005, 144.

Monarchianism

The naive view that the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit were successive activities and revelations of one God thereby suggesting that the LORD God Father suffered upon the cross and was crucified by man.  This teaching is also known as Modalism, or in the derogatory sense, Patripassianism.1

Monarchian Teachers2:

Dynamic Monarchians

Theodotus the Leatherworker, c. 185, Byzantium/Rome

Theodotus the Banker, c. 199, Rome

Artemon, c. 210, Rome

Paul of Samosata, c. 260-68, Antioch

Modalist Monarchians

Noetus, c. 200, Smyrna

Praxeas, c. 200, Asia/Rome

Epigonus, c. 200, Rome

Sabellius, c. 215, Rome

 

1Ferguson, Everett. Church History Volume One: From Christ to Pre-Reformation. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2005, 144.

2Ibid.

Monolatry

Worship of one God.

Monophysite Church

A Popular Coptic Church throughout Syria, Egypt, Anatolia, and Lavant for those adhering to Monophysitism in preference of the Chalcedonian orthodoxy. (See Melkite Church)

Monophysitism

The Christological position that Christ has a single inseparable nature that is at once divine and human rather than having two distinct but unified natures. (See Hypostatic Union)

Monotheism

Belief in the existence of only one God. Judaism and Christianity identify the only true LORD God YAHWEH to be the Creator of all things.

Monotheletism

Teaches that Jesus Christ had two natures but only one will. This is contrary to the orthodox interpretation of Christology, which teaches that Jesus Christ has two wills (human and divine) corresponding to his two natures. Sergius, patriarch of Constantinople in the early seventh century, developed this doctrine by first expressing a concern of Monophysites belief that Christ should have a single "will" or faculty of volition, and thus, one nature. He reasoned that Christ had two natures but only one "will" located within his person. Sergius had intended the doctrine to mean that the human and the divine in Christ cooperated perfectly. This idea proved amenable to Emperor Heraclius, and he imposed the doctrine of Monotheletism ("one will") upon the church in his famous decree called Ekthesis. Although many Byzantine theologians agreed, some interpreted this position as teaching that Christ was a divine person masquerading as a human being, and was not properly human. Pope John IV condemned Monotheletism as Monophysitism in disguise, both heretical teachings. (Hill, 139)

Reference:

Hill, Jonathan. "Early Christianity: A World Religion." Handbook to the History of Christianity. Zondervan, 2006.

Montanism (New Prophecy)

An important Christian movement founded in the second half of the second century by a Phygian named Montanus. Montanus believed he was given a new revelation, which led to his appointment as leader of a church in the supposed final days before the return of Jesus Christ. His main disciples were two prophetesses named Prisca and Maximilla. The movement was called New Prophecy by the followers, and Montanism by the opponents. Ecstatic and wild demonstrations accompanied many of their prophetic expressions, but they did not preach any particular doctrines that were objected to by mainline Christians. Most of their prophecies were concerned with morality; they adhered to a strict and harsh way of life, and believed that post-baptismal sin could not be forgiven. The movement spread beyond Anatolia to Africa, where mystical rites were celebrated in secret, imitating the ecstatic trances of the prophetesses and resembling the pagan mystery religions. It remained in existence as a minor, secretive cult until the sixth century. (Hill, 64)

Reference:

Hill, Jonathan. "Early Christianity: A World Religion." Handbook to the History of Christianity. Zondervan, 2006.

Mystical Theology, The

Five-page work in the corpus within the Dionysian writings which presents the God as beyond perception and conception whose Godhead transcends all denials.

N

Narthax

A passage between the main entrance and the nave of a church that is enclosed

Nation

A distinctive culture plus time with complex and extensive traditions that are passed on through multi-generations.

Nativity

Represents the birth of Jesus Christ in human being form

Natural Life

The carnal life of nature that all human beings live

Nature Worship

The deitification of the things of nature leading to the worship of a false god

Nave

Extends from the main entrance or narthex to the chancel (area which surrounds the altar) of a church with aisles normally used by only the congregation

Nestorianism

Christian doctrine that declares Jesus Christ exists as two persons, as man and the divine Son of God (Logos), rather than combined as a unified person. This view of Christ was condemned at the Council of Ephesus in 431, which led to the Nestorian schism, separating the Assyrian Church of the East from the Byzantine Church.

Nicene Creed

Ecumenical Christian statement of faith accepted by the Roman Catholic, Eastern Orthodox, Anglican, and major Protestant churches. The Nicene Creed was drafted at the Council of Nicaea in the 4th century AD in an attempt to unify the Christian church under Emperor Constantine (See Arius)

The Nicene Creed (International Consultation on English Texts translation
as printed in: The Lutheran Book of Worship, The Book of Common Prayer (Episcopal))

We believe in one God,
the Father, the Almighty,
maker of heaven and earth,
of all that is, seen and unseen.

We believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ,
the only Son of God,
eternally begotten of the Father,
God from God, Light from Light,
true God from true God,
begotten, not made,
of one Being with the Father.
Through him all things were made.
For us and for our salvation
he came down from heaven:
by the power of the Holy Spirit
he became incarnate from the Virgin Mary,
and was made man.
For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate;
he suffered death and was buried.
On the third day he rose again
in accordance with the Scriptures;
he ascended into heaven
and is seated at the right hand of the Father.
He will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead,
and his kingdom will have no end.

We believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life,
who proceeds from the Father and the Son.
With the Father and the Son he is worshiped and glorified.
He has spoken through the Prophets.
We believe in one holy catholic and apostolic Church.
We acknowledge one baptism for the forgiveness of sins.
We look for the resurrection of the dead,
and the life of the world to come. Amen.
O

Obedience

Willing compliance, submission, and conformance to the rule of authority.

Obeisance

A bow or curtsy before a superior to reflect deep respect. (See Genuflection)

Obelisk

A four-sided pillar of stone that usually tapers to a pyramidal top.

Obelus

A mark (- or +) used in ancient manuscripts to point out corrupted or superfluous words or passages.

Oblate

A person giving service within a monastery, but without taking monastic vows or submitting to full monastic rule.

Oblation

The offering to the LORD God of the elements of bread and wine in the Eucharist.

Opinion

An estimation, judgment, or idea that is tied to emotions (See Ethics)

Opinionativeness

Lust for conquering.1

 

Reference:

1Saint Augustine, Bishop of Hippo, The City of God, trans., Marcus Dods, Modern Library Paperback ed. (New York: Random House, Inc., 2000), 464

Origen

An Egyptian philosopher, theologian, and biblical exegete (c. AD 185-254), Origen was the most influential of all early Christian Greek speaking theologians. He was the architect of most of the substructure of Christian dogma and biblical theology in the late antique period.

Origen believed that the highest goals of philosophy were reconcilable with the mysterious plan of divine wisdom (Logos), and in the sacred scriptures, the gift of revelation and human enlightenment would meet. His approach to Bible interpretation was governed by the belief that scripture was a single reality from the mind of the Divine Logos, and thus had several layers of meaning. For Origen, those who stayed only with the literal meaning of Bible text interpretation were left in the valleys of immature spiritual growth, and unable to ascend to the mountaintop and receive the deeper teachings of Jesus Christ.

His book "On First Principles" was an introductory summary of Christian faith that related Christian worldview and how it embraces cosmology, philosophy and religion. His greatest work, the "Commentary on the Gospel of John", and his most influential writing, the "Commentary on the Song of Songs", were written in Caesarea, after tensions forced his departure from Alexandria in AD 231. In AD 249, he was tortured by the emperor Decius, and died in AD 253, a martyr's death from the injuries of that torture. (Hill, 67)

Reference:

Hill, Jonathan. "Early Christianity: A World Religion." Handbook to the History of Christianity. Zondervan, 2006.

Ostraca

The technical term for potsherds whose fragments contain writing. Inscriptions of this type are usually found scratched into the sherds or written with ink.
P

Palestine (Canaan)

Biblical land of Israel located in Southwest Asia, bordering the East coast of the Mediterranean, and extending East to the Jordan River. The sacred region to Judaism, Christianity and Islam has been the object of conflict between Jewish and Arab national movements. Originally settled in early prehistoric times by Semitic groups, it was part of the kingdoms of Israel, Judah, and Judea during Biblical times

Papal Decree of 1075

Pope Gregory VII forcibly declared the rights and dignities of the pope through his Papal Decree of 1075 to prevent the papacy from becoming a pawn of powerful warlords. The decree stated that no one could judge the pope, and that he alone could appoint and depose bishops, kings and emperors, with his rule extending over all earthly rulers. These rulers were decreed to kiss his feet when they approach him, and declared all popes automatically saints. (Hill, 186)

Reference:

Hill, Jonathan. "Early Christianity: A World Religion." Handbook to the History of Christianity. Zondervan, 2006.

Papyrus

Delicate parchments made from a reed plant were the most commonly used writing materials in ancient times. Papyrus documents have survived if they were stored in exceptional conditions like dry areas, sealed tombs, buried under hot desert sands or stored in jars within caves like those in the Dead Sea Region.

Parchment

Prepared skins of animals (usually sheep or goats) that was one kind of material used for writings of sacred or other literature, as well as private and commercial letters written with ink.

Partial Rapturism

A rare belief that only those believers who possess enough spirituality are actively involved in watch for the coming of the Lord Jesus Christ will be raptured. All other Christians, as well as the rest of the world, are expected to go through the tribulation of the wrath of God, for a purging of wickedness.

Paschal Controversy

The fourteenth of Nisan falls on random days of the week according to the Jewish calander; most churches opted to celebrate the death and resurrection of Christ on the Sunday after the full moon of spring.  Those churches which disagreed were called Qyartodeciman,for their pactice of observing the Passion of Christ on the date of the Passover. The controversy between the two dates is known as the Paschal Controversy, which led to the great majority declaring that the Lord's resurrection should be celebrated on Sunday, and the paschal fast should end on that day.1

1Ferguson, Everett. Church History Volume One: From Christ to Pre-Reformation. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2005.

Patripassianism

The idea of Modalism  which expressed belief that the LORD God as God the Father was able to suffer; this view was in direct contrast of Tertullian and the old catholic fathers who accepted the impassibility of God but acknowledge the capability of Christ suffering in human form.1

1Ferguson, Everett. Church History Volume One: From Christ to Pre-Reformation. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2005, 142-145.

Peace of God Decree

Movement toward this decree began at the council at Le Puy in 975, followed by the councils at Charoux (c 989), Limoges (994 and 1031), Potiers (c 100), and Bourges (1038). The Peace of God Decree was the response of the medieval Roman Catholic Church to the breakdown of public order. The Peace of God Decree forbade, under threat of excommunication, private warfare or violence against churches, clerics, merchants, pilgrims, women, peasants, and cattle. Priests and monks were prohibited from participating in warfare and war could not be conducted in consecrated places such as churches. (See Truce of God)

Pentateuch

The first five books of the Old Testament (Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy) which make up the Torah.

Person (Personality)

The identifier of life that is composed of intellect, emotion, will, self-awareness and self-determination.

Pharisees

A Jewish social-religious sect whose liberal, hypocritical, self righteous members flourished in the first century B.C. Supported by most of the Jewish people at that time, there party was the beginnings for the development of all later forms of Judaism. The popular Pharisee laymen challenged the aristocratic Sadducees sect in allowing varying discussions of the law, applying it to everyday life and giving authority to oral traditions. They believed in personal immortality with the existence of life after death, and emphasized prophetic ideals and the afterlife.

Philistines

The Philistines were a tribe allied to the Phoenicians. They were a primitive race which spread over the whole district of Lebanon, the valley of Jordan, Crete and other Mediterranean islands. In the time of Abraham, they inhabited the south-west of Judea and Abimelech of Gerar was their king. They were a powerful tribe and made frequent incursions against the Hebrews, and there was almost always a war going on between them.

They were not subdued until the time of King Hezekiah, however, they continued to occupy their territory and show hatred toward Israel. The Philistines are called Fulsata or Pulista on the Egyptian monuments and the land of the Philistines (Philistia) was termed Palastu and Pilista in Assyrian inscriptions. From Philistia, the name of the land of the Philistines came to eventually be known as “Palestine.”

Phoenicia

Today's Lebanon, north of Israel

Pluralism

The belief that salvation can come from a variety of religious traditions.

Pneumatomachians

Those who fight against the Holy Spirit; also called Tropicists or Macedonians.1

1Ferguson, Everett. Church History Volume One: From Christ to Pre-Reformation. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2005, 207.

Pogrom

Organized massacre, destruction and violence against people by a mob that is condoned by authorities.

Polytheism

Belief in more than one false god. Paganism.

Postmillennialism

The belief that Jesus Christ's second coming will be after the 1,000 years of Christian peace, prosperity and dominance in a "Golden Age" of Christianity on earth. The Rapture is not a prominent focus in this belief. (Contrast Premillennialism, Amillennialism, Pretribulationism)

Posttribulationism

The belief that Christians will be on earth during the time of tribulation, and that the rapture will occur with the second return of the Lord Jesus Christ. The wrath of God will be experienced by the Church, Israel, and the world together according to this belief.

Potsherds (Sherds)

Broken pieces of clay pottery used for the writing of common things, they were the poor man's postcard because of their abundance.

Prayer

Dialogue and communion with the LORD God through a personal and intimate relationship with Jesus Christ which leads to the fulfillment of His Will.

Prelapsarianism

The belief expressed by Theodore Beza and followers that the LORD God planned the division of the saved and damned of humanity before humanity first sinned

Premillennialism

The belief that there will be a seven-year period of great tribulation before the 1,000 year of earthly reign of peace by Jesus Christ. This belief maintains that the current age of mankind exists prior to the establishment of the Kingdom of God upon earth, which is after the Battle of Armageddon (where Jesus Christ and His armies from Heaven defeat the kings, beast, and false prophet). The Millennium is considered the period between the second coming of Christ and the last judgment. Jesus Christ is expected to return to establish a literal kingdom on earth to fulfill prophesy in the Old Testament; the promised rapture is a significant issue in this belief.
(Contrast Postmillennialism, Amillennialism, Pretribulationism)

Premise

A statement that is offered in support of the claim that is made. That claim is a conclusion from a statement that may be true or false.

Presupposition

A self-evident truth. Attitudes that form an assumption of belief.

Pretribulationism

The belief that Christians will be raptured before the beginning of the seven years of tribulation brought to the world prior to the Battle of Armageddon and the resulting 1,000 year earthly reign by Jesus Christ. The events that follow rapture are thought to be a time when ethnic Israel is brought to the Lord Jesus Christ.This view was introduced to the modern church by John Nelson Darby from is dispensationalism views.(Contrast Postmillennialism, Amillennialism, Premillennialism)

Primitivism

The belief those less technologically dependent cultures are inherently better than more technologically dependent ones

Prolegomena

"To go before" comes first in study and gives direction to the formation one's presupposition of belief

Proletariat

Exploited class containing the mass of workers who do not own the means of production. Karl Marx believed that conflict between the Bourgeoisie (capitalists) and Proletariat (workers) was the key to social change.

Publican

Backslidden Jewish businessman
Q

Quaran

Also known as the Koran. It is the sacred book of the Muslims filled with revelations purported to be given to the prophet Muhammad by God to form the foundation for Islam.

Quartodecimans

Some churches, especially those of Asia, were called by this name by those who disagreed with them for their practice of observing the Passion of Christ on the date of the Passover. The fourteenth of Nisan falls on random days of the week according to the Jewish calander; most churches opted to celebrate the death and resurrection of Christ on the Sunday after the full moon of spring.  The controversy between the two dates is known as the Paschal Controversy, which led to the great majority declaring that the Lord's resurrection should be celebrated on Sunday, and the paschal fast should end on that day.1

1Ferguson, Everett. Church History Volume One: From Christ to Pre-Reformation. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2005.

Quatodecimanism

The practice of celebrating Easter on the same day as Passover

Quicken

Manifestation of life

Quirinal

One of the seven hills on which ancient Rome was built which denotes the Italian civil authority and government.

Quirinus

The ancient Roman god of war identified with deified Romulus, an embodiment of the Roman nation.

Quirites

Ancient roman citizens acting in civil capacity

Quodlibet

A theological point of debate with subtle or elaborate argument.
R

Rapture

The mostly pretribulationism belief that the Lord Jesus Christ will come for Christians before the wrath of God is visited upon the world in tribulation in the last days.

“But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope. For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him. For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive [and] remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive [and] remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord. Wherefore comfort one another with these words.” (1 Thessalonians 4:14-18 AV)

Reaching People

Making contact with unsaved people and motivating them to listen to the Gospel with honest ears

Recapitulation

Summarizing and restating the main points of something.  Irenaeus's key theological idea of recapitulation combined with Ephesians 1:10, reveals the Lord Jesus Christ as the climax of the LORD God's salvation plan and harmonizes the Old and New Testaments as one complete works by Him.

Redaction Criticism

Hermeneutical interpretation that determines the premise (reason) that the author writes. (See Hermeneutics)

Reformation, Classical

Martin Luther, Ulrich Zwingli, John Calvin, John Knox, Thomas Krammer in England and others participate in the Classical Reformation (sometimes called Magisterial Reformation).  This type of reform is called calssical because they maintain the union between church and state.

Reformation, Counter

The Roman Catholic response to the criticism of the Classical Reformers.  They tried to clean up some of the corrupt and faulty parts of the church; but, it was only an internal effort that did not address theological issues.

Reformation, Radical

Unlike Calssical reformation, radical reform separates the church from the state.  They believed the same theological doctrines as Lutheran, Calvin, and other Classical reformers, except for this one difference. Radical Reformers are also known as Anabaptists.

Regeneration

Regeneration, or New Birth, is a work of God's grace whereby believers become new creatures in Christ Jesus at the moment a faithful believer is resurrected out of the Baptismal waters. The Baptism of Jesus Christ brings death to sin, and becomes the grave to which faithful believers in Jesus Christ's own Resurrection, are Born Again as they come up out of the waters. This regenerative process brings a change of heart, and a new life able to receive and be guided by the Holy Spirit.

Repentance

A genuine turning away from sin and toward God. Repentance and faith are inseparable experiences, necessary to receive the Grace of the LORD God.

Replacement Theology

The belief of some Christians (prevalent among many conservative Presbyterian denominations as well as some liberal Christian churches) that God abandoned the Jewish people as a result of their disobedience and chose instead the Christian Church as the bearer of His grace as the new Chosen people. This belief of God's rejection of the Jewish people creates a fertile ground for the proliferation of anti-Semitism which has historically developed as a result.

Revival

The LORD God outpouring His Presence amongst people

Rigorists

Those holding the ideal that the church is a congregation of saved people seperated from sin.  Conversely, Laxists are those who see the church as the instrument of salvation as a kind of hospital for sick souls.1

Tertullian, Hippolytus, and Novatian represent the Rigorist view; Callistus and Cyprian reject this definition of the church.2

1Ferguson, Everett. Church History Volume One: From Christ to Pre-Reformation. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2005, 145.

2Ibid.

Rule of St. Benedict

A book of 6th century precepts written for monks living together in a community under the authority of an abbot. The rule book was written by Benedict (c. AD 480-550) and was linked with the abbey of Monte Cassino (south of Rome); it became the most influential rule for monastic life by the 9th century. (See Cluniac Movement)
S

Sacerdotalism

The exaltation of priests by attributing to them divine powers. As the dispensers of these powers of grace through sacraments, they assume the right to exclude from heaven or to include those who are submissive to their authority, to turn ordinary bread and wine into the body and blood of Christ, and to be the representatives of God on earth. Thus, personal salvation is impossible according to this false belief; only through the godlike-priest can the grace of sacraments be received.

Sacral

Common religious loyalty that binds believers together. Those within a sacral society are all the members within that societ committed to common religion.

Sadducees

A Jewish social-religious sect whose religiously conservative, aristocratic members believed they were descendants of Sadok, the high priest of Solomon. Their interpretation of Scripture was literal, and they strove to maintain the ancient Hebrew teachings concerning the Torah. They rejected the concepts of the hidden mysteries of the LORD God, as well as the concepts of the resurrection of the dead and of an afterlife. They believed that the LORD God meted out reward and punishment on earth, and upon death, life quit existing.

Sadness

Feelings originating from the opposition to what is loved when it befalls1 (See Joy, Fear, Desire)

 

 

Reference:

Saint Augustine, Bishop of Hippo, The City of God, trans., Marcus Dods, Modern Library Paperback ed. (New York: Random House, Inc., 2000), 449.

Salvation

Deliverance from the effects and power and of sin and judgment of death. It involves the redemption of the whole man, and is offered freely to all who accept Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior, who by His own blood obtained eternal redemption for the believer. In its broadest sense salvation includes regeneration, justification, sanctification, and glorification. There is no salvation apart from personal faith in Jesus Christ as Risen Lord and Savior.

Salvation Phases:

Justification - Past (Phase 1) I Have Been Saved from the penalty of sin (FREE) (Christian)

Sanctification - Present (Phase 2) I Am Being Saved from the power of sin (Costly) (Disciple)

Glorification - Future (Phase 3) I Will Be Saved from the presence of sin (Face-to-Face) (Glorified Bodies)

Sanctification

Sanctification is the experience, beginning in regeneration, by which the believer is set apart to God's purposes, and is enabled to progress toward moral and spiritual maturity through the presence and power of the Holy Spirit dwelling in him.

Salvation Phases:

Justification - Past (Phase 1) I Have Been Saved from the penalty of sin (FREE) (Christian)

Sanctification - Present (Phase 2) I Am Being Saved from the power of sin (Costly) (Disciple)

Glorification - Future (Phase 3) I Will Be Saved from the presence of sin (Face-to-Face) (Glorified Bodies)

Second Temple Era

The Second Temple was the center of Jewish sacrificial worship which stood in Jerusalem between 516 BCE and 70 CE. It was built after the First Temple was destroyed in 586 BCE when the Jewish nation was exiled to Babylon. It is the time that the Lord Jesus Christ walked upon earth, and the period in which the Gospels were written.

Secular

Worldly, carnal or physical environment of life that is not substantially influenced by Christianity.

Sensus Plenior

The Latin word for a deeper allegorical, typological, symbolic, or mystical meaning intended to be relayed by God through His Word that was unknown to the original human author's literal meaning.

Shema Yisrael

Important Jewish prayer, an affirmation of Judaism and a declaration of faith in one God, that focuses upon Deuteronomy 6:4-9:

"Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God is one LORD:  And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might. And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up. And thou shalt bind them for a sign upon thine hand, and they shall be as frontlets between thine eyes.  And thou shalt write them upon the posts of thy house, and on thy gates."

This prayer is spoken day and night, and taught to the youngsters at bedtime, as well as posted upon their doorposts on a script on a small scroll which is then rolled up and put inside a mezuzah  (The entire shema daily prayers include Deuteronomy 6:4-9, 11:13-21, and Numbers 13:37-41).

Jesus references this prayer and adds to it for His followers sake in Mark 12:29-31:

"And Jesus answered him, The first of all the commandments is, Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God is one Lord: And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment.  And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these."


 

Sign

Miracle with a message

Silver Scrolls

The oldest portion of the Bible so far discovered was found inscribed upon silver scrolls taken from a tomb in the Hinnom Valley. Found in 1979 by Gabriel Barkay, the tiny silver scrolls contained a text of Scripture from the Pentateuch (the Aaronic benediction of Numbers 6:24-26 - The LORD bless thee, and keep thee: 25 The LORD make his face shine upon thee, and be gracious unto thee: The LORD lift up his countenance upon thee, and give thee peace), which predated the Judean exile. This find posed a problem to critical scholars, who argued that priests had authored most of the Pentateuch after the Judean exile. As a result, critical scholars must now adjust or reformulate their theory concerning the authorship of the Pentateuch.

Sin

Failing to live up to or violating the laws of the LORD God through transgression, unrighteousness, omission of known duty, faithlessness, or foolishness in an act, thought or state.

Social Darwinism

The concept of "Survival of the Fittest" first coined by sociologist Herbert Spencer.

Society

A group of people who share a culture and a territory.

Source Criticism

Hermeneutic interpretation of Biblical texts that tries to determine other sources used by the author to write the manuscript. (See Hermeneutics)

Spencer, Herbert

(27 April 1820 – 8 December 1903) A prominent, liberal, sociological theorist and English philosopher in the Victorian era who believed that societies evolve from lower ("barbarian") to higher ("civilized") forms. He felt that if you helped the lower classes you interfere with this natural process. He also believed that the fittest members will produce a more advanced society - unless misguided do-gooders get in the way and help the less fit survive. He coined the term "Social Darwinism" which is the "survival of the fittest".1

Reference:

1Henslin, J. (2010). Sociology: A down-to-earth approach (10th ed.) Boston, Massachusetts: Allyn & Bacon. ISBN-13: 978-0-205-68862-3.


Spiritual Conviction

Ethics that do not change and are based upon a foundation that is beyond the personal preferences of an individual. The Word of God is the only foundation of Truth that true spiritual conviction is based (See Ethics)

St. John Lateran (Golden Basilica)

Constantine turned the old Lateran Palace in Rome into this church. The architecture followed the style of basilicas closely, and was filled with treasure befitting its beauty. Rebuilt many times, it remains the Catholic cathedral of Rome.

Stone Inscriptions

Usually written as monumental inscriptions in association with public buildings, to commemorate some special event (victory or dedication), or in connection with burials (to preserve a name or memorial). They range in size from huge obelisks, statues, and wall panels in Egyptian temples to smaller documents on oblong cylinders used for Mesopotamian records. They are the best-preserved inscriptions are found on these substances from the past.

Summum Bonum

(Latin) The highest or chief good (spoken of in Ecclesiastes)

Symbolic Interactionism

Views symbols or things to which we attach meaning, as the basis of social life.

Syro-Phoenician

A Syrian living in Phoenicia

Systematic Theology

Summarizes biblical and historical theology, and seeks to build an organic, consistent and truthful system with our knowledge of God and His relationship with the universe revealed in both Scripture and nature
T

Tell

An unnatural mound created by repeated destruction and rebuilding of ancient cities and villages on the same site.

Temple

Originally built in Jerusalem on King Solomon's orders centuries earlier, it was rebuilt and restored by Herod the Great in the 1st century, B.C. The Temple was central to Jewish religion, and was used in sacrifices and other rituals as directed by the Pentateuch. The LORD God inhabited the central precinct with the Temple, called the Holy of Holies, and only the high priest could enter once a year.

Ten Commandments

The Law of the LORD God, given to Moses by His voice upon Mount Sinai, and written upon stone tablets as part of the covenant between God and His people. (Exodus 20)

Textual Criticism

Hermeneutical interpretation of Biblical texts using the modern approach to evaluate text as close as possible to the original texts of the manuscript copies of the Bible books.  (See Hermeneutics)

Theanthropic

Having both a Divine and human nature

Theistic Evolutionism

Belief that God used evolution as one pattern for His Creation. There is a fixed point in time when the Creation was "very good" and perfect in God's eyes and was finished. Any changes that occur after the fallen condition are a result of devolution that has had to deteriorate progressively from the first perfect creation for adaptation to the fallen world. Every mutation makes a gene-based sequence progressively deteriorate, making the life worse off than the perfect Creation once was, and cannot be restored to perfectness once again without the touch of God. (See The Creation of Light, Heavens and Earth, Seas, Sun, Moon and Stars and The Evolution, Making and Creation of Man)

Theologian

An advanced student of theology able to establish an acceptable system of consistent interrelated facts through forming coherent patterns of truth from fragments revealed in the Word of God and nature.

Theology

The study and reasoned discourse concerning religious belief and God revealed by Him from all sources including both the Bible and the physical world of God. It is the science of the LORD God's essential being and His relationship to the universe according to His Word. It is the practice of delivering ministry of the Word of God to the world.  It is the application of Scripture to every area of existence and faith seeking understanding of everyday life.
 
Folk Theology – Every living being that seeks answers about God or forms an opinion about His things is participating in folk theology. The Internet is crammed full of folk theologists who present their spiritual ideas to the world that stretch from urban myths, angelic encounters, supernatural events, and even a few out-of-body trips stirred by favorite drugs that offer extra insight into the deeper things in life. But, folk theology is not limited to the ethereal thinkers, but is practiced by almost every being on this planet at one time or another as a connection is made to the difference between the body and the soul, and the connection between one’s own actions and God’s movement.

Lay Theology – Initiated by Christians as spiritual maturity drives them to seek deeper answers from the Word of God. Every believer that is growing in the Word of God becomes a Lay Theologist. By the very nature of their spiritual growth, a seeking heart and an inquisitive mind associate theological ideas in life with Scripture in ever-increasing depth and revelation from God. It is the time when new believers began questioning the spiritual things that are expressed in their church and their life and they begin joining concepts of personal belief in a system that helps them understand. No longer satisfied with blind or rote participation in worship tradition, they seek answers with their search for a more intimate knowledge of God.

Ministerial Theology – This type of theology defines a significant effort toward connecting the things God has revealed to mankind to human life and existence. Explanations that are sought for difficult times are carefully answered by Ministerial Theologists who offer comfort and reassurance that God is in control. Ministerial theology is practiced by ministers and pastors, as well as by Christian parents, who participate in life by sharing the things of God with others to uphold, sustain, and encourage growth toward Him as common life and the mundane, as well as life assist with difficulties and support celebrations toward God and His things.

Professional Theology – Hard questions concerning God’s movement and revelation often require systematic ordering with a careful contemplation of His Word. Professional Theologists are the Pastors, Professors, Writers, and Teachers that apply detailed study to the things of God in an effort to fully express His will and ways to others. It is a serious commitment to connect revelations that God has given mankind to lay people in an ordered way that gives them support to live their lives as willed by Him. (Note: Becker Bible Teacher Resources is a Professional Theology website.)

Academic Theology – Frankly speaking, this type of theology is not connected by God’s moving as much as it is connected to man’s efforts to form systematic ideas that reflect their educational efforts that are built upon others. More often than not, Academic Theology is practiced by an elite group of educated thinkers who awe each other with ever-increasing understanding of very specific, limited ideas, usually in a philosophical, rather than a spiritual, sense. Academic Theologists are less concerned about God, but more interested in the discipline and concepts of belief. Discussion and scholarship in Academic Theology does not rely upon Scripture; it favors textbooks, journal articles, and lectures to advance its field.

Theory

A hypothesis that has not been proven as fact. The establishment of a theory as fact requires the properties of data, observation and repeatability to establish as scientific fact.

Time

A sequence of events placed in relationship with each other.

Tonsure

Shaved patch of the head. Catholic monks shaved the crowns of their head to represent the crown of thorns worn by Christ on the cross. Irish monks retained a pagan haircut, by shaving the fronts of their heads in medieval times.

Training

A prerequisite preparation stage of learning. It is facilitated primarily with the exercise of teacher-guided discipline which equips students with self-control and proper judgment to repeat new things taught.

Trine Immersion

A form of Baptism where the Believer is immersed three time in the Baptismal Waters in the specific name of each of the three Persons of the Triune God.

Trinity

God the Father, His only begotten son Jesus Christ, and His Holy Spirit. One and equal in nature, two subordinate and submissive in duties, three distinct and separate in person.

Truce of God Decree

The first decree came during the Council of Clermont (1095) that proclaimed a weekly truce to be upheld on Sundays and a special truce on church Holy Days. It was instituted in France at the Council of Elne in 1027 and all of Europe (excluding England) by 1179; although the truce was never completely upheld, it appears to have been most powerfully obeyed during the 12th century. (See Peace of God)

Tyranny

Lust for ruling.1

 

Reference:

1Saint Augustine, Bishop of Hippo, The City of God, trans., Marcus Dods, Modern Library Paperback ed. (New York: Random House, Inc., 2000), 464

U

Ubiquitarian

The doctrine espoused by Martin Luther, that the body of Christ is omnipresent and therefore exists in the Eucharistic bread.

Ubiquitous

Present everywhere at the same time in an omnipresent state.

Ultramontanism

The policy of adherents within the Roman Catholic Church that favor increasing the power and authority of the Pope.

V

Va'ad

A Jewish council that maintains control and gives advice over certain community affairs.

Vade Mecum

A book that a person carries for frequent and regular reference.

Valid

A well-founded, just, sound, effective, binding and sustainable result.

Valley of the Kings

A valley on the west bank of the Nile near the site of Thebes which was the necropolis of many of the kings and queens of ancient Egypt (c1350-c1200 B.C.). (Also called the Valley of the Tombs)

Vatic

The characteristics of a prophet.

Vatican

The authority and government of the Roman Catholic Pope. Also the name given to the Pope's chief residence, which includes a library, archives, art museum, apartments and administrative offices.

Vatican City

An independent state of 109 acres within the city of Rome, ruled by the Pope. Sitting on the right bank of the Tiber, it was established in 1929 and includes St. Peter's Church and the Vatican.

Vatican Council

The ecumenical council convoked in Rome by Pope Pius IX that declared the dogma of papal infallibility (1869-70).

Vaticanism

A derogatory term used to describe the doctrine of the absolute supremacy of the Pope.

Vaticanus

The Greek uncial code that contains most of the text of the Bible. The 4th century A.D. manuscript is housed at the Vatican Museum.

Vellum

Parchments made from calf skin

Veneration

A religious symbolic act bestowing honor to that which brings worship to God.

Verily

Truly. Said twice for emphasis by Jesus Christ when speaking to doubters of His Word.

Virgin Mary

Blessed among all women, she is the human mother of Jesus Christ, who was conceived divinely by the LORD God within her untouched womb.
W

Weber, Max

(21 April 1864–14 June 1920) Weber was a German lawyer, politician, and one of the most influential of all sociologists, raising issues that remain controversial even today. Weber disagreed with Karl Marx (class conflict is key to social change), by defining religion as a central force in social change. Weber developed the theory of the Protestant work ethic.

Word of God

The inerrant and infallible Word of God is Jesus Christ expressed. The Holy Bible was written by men divinely inspired and is God's revelation of Himself to man. It is a perfect treasure of divine instruction. It has God for its author, salvation for its end, and truth, without any mixture of error, for its matter. Therefore, all Scripture is totally true and trustworthy. It reveals the principles by which God judges us, and therefore is, and will remain to the end of the world, the true center of Christian union, and the supreme standard by which all human conduct, creeds, and religious opinions should be tried. All Scripture is a testimony to Christ, who is Himself the focus of divine revelation.

X

Xerophagy

A strict Lenten fast observed during the Holy Week by the Eastern Church.

XP

A Christian monogram made from the first two letters of the Greek word for Christ.
Y

Yahrzeit

A Jewish tradition and ceremony of lighting memorial lamps or candles while reciting the Kaddish to commemorate the anniversary of the death of a close relative.

YAHWEH

The holy name of the LORD God which is also rendered JEHOVAH. His name should be held in utmost reverence and not called upon in a casual way.

Yahwism

A specific religious system based on the worship of YAHWEH.

Yahwist

The writer of the earliest major source of the Hexateuch, in which the LORD God is characteristically referred to as YAHWEH rather than Elohim.

Yarmulke

A Jewish skullcap worn during prayer and religious study by conservative and orthodox males.

Year of Confusion

The year of 445 days in ancient Rome in 46 B.C. of the Julian calendar which was lengthened to compensate for cumulative errors of the Roman calendar.

Year's Mind

A Requiem Mass said one year after a person's death or burial.

Yeshiva

An orthodox Jewish school for the religious and secular education of elementary and higher instructions in learning.

Yiddish

A combined vocabulary of Hebrew and Slavic (German dialects), written in Hebrew letters and spoken mainly by Jews in countries E. of Germany and by Jewish emigrants from that region.

Yigdal

A liturgical prayer sung responsively by the Jewish cantor and congregation at the close of the evening service on the Sabbath.
Z

Zealots

A Jewish social-religious sect whose members demanded that the Jews deny the authority of the Roman emperor and to avoid paying taxes to Rome. They were devoted patriots who engaged in active resistance to Rome. They were a conquered people who yearned for a Messiah who would liberate them from Roman rule and establish the LORD God's reign.

Zoroastrianism

A monotheistic, pre-Islamic religion of ancient Persia founded by the prophet Zoroaster (Zarathustra) in the 6th century. Believers worship a false god named Ahura Mazda, and follow Zarathusta in the religion of Mazdeism. Their system of worship presupposes a good spirit (Ormuzd) and an opposing evil Spirit (Ahriman). Once a dominant religion of Greater Iran, the number of adherents has dwindled to under 200,000 worldwide, with concentrations in India and Iran. The Zoroastrian Towers of Silence in Yazd, Iran, were used to leave their dead at the top of the towers to be consumed by vultures, a practice continued today among the Parsis of India.