Return to authority: The monothelete controversy and the role of text, emperor and council in the Sixth Ecumenical Council. Daniel Larison

ISBN: 9781109064322

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NOOKstudy eTextbook

431 pages


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Return to authority: The monothelete controversy and the role of text, emperor and council in the Sixth Ecumenical Council.  by  Daniel Larison

Return to authority: The monothelete controversy and the role of text, emperor and council in the Sixth Ecumenical Council. by Daniel Larison
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An extensive investigation of the acta of the sixth ecumenical council (680-81) in Constantinople, this study traces the intensified Byzantine use of patristic citations and the revival of imperial authority in the seventh century in the wake of theMoreAn extensive investigation of the acta of the sixth ecumenical council (680-81) in Constantinople, this study traces the intensified Byzantine use of patristic citations and the revival of imperial authority in the seventh century in the wake of the Islamic conquests and the major religious controversy of monotheletism.

Byzantines identified authoritative texts according to their antiquity, the reputation of their authors and their compatibility with orthodox consensus, and Byzantines on all sides of religious controversy increasingly relied on patristic texts to vindicate their positions during theological debate. Byzantine cultural values and assumptions were embedded in their theological and polemical literature and can be recovered from these sources.

Controversies over the will and energy of Christ provided the language and occasion for publicly contesting concepts of agency, freedom, authority and human nature. The seventh century witnessed the renewed role of the emperor in the church and the churchs acceptance of his involvement. The sixth council represented the moment when a Byzantine emperor, Constantine IV (668-685), directed a church council more directly than any since Constantine I.-The study also includes a revisionist account of the origin and rise of monothelete Christianity as the official doctrine of the Byzantine state, and considers how monothelete Christians understood their doctrine and what cultural meaning it held for them.

Monotheletism, the doctrine that Christ possessed only one, divine will, was not a politically-inspired device used to reconcile dissident churches in the eastern provinces of Byzantium, but was a natural expression of theological developments over the previous century and an example of an alternative Syrian Christianity that endured for centuries after the eastern provinces had been lost to the Byzantines.



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