Intercession of Christ
Intercession of Christ is the Christian belief in the continued intercession of Jesus and his advocacy on behalf of humanity after he left the earth. In Christian teachings, the intercession of Christ before God relates to Jesus' anamnesis before God during the Last Supper and the continuing memorial nature of the Eucharistic offering. From the Christological perspective, the intercession of Christ is distinguished from the Intercession of the Spirit. In the first case Christ takes petitions to the Father in Heaven, in the second case the Comforter flows from Heaven toward the hearts of believers; the theological basis for the belief in the intercession of Christ is provided in the New Testament. In the Epistle to the Romans Saint Paul states: It is Christ Jesus that died, yea rather, raised from the dead, at the right hand of God, who maketh intercession for us; this intercession resonates with John 17:22 which refers to the "heavenly communion" between Christ and God the Father. The First Epistle of John states: And if any man sin, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous: and he is the propitiation for our sins.
In the Epistle to the Hebrews Saint Paul wrote of the "salvation to the uttermost" through the continued intercession of Christ: Wherefore he is able to save to the uttermost them that draw near unto God through him, seeing he liveth to make intercession for them. The intercession of Christ in Heaven is seen as a continuation of the prayers and petitions he performed for humanity while on earth, e.g. as in Luke 23:34: "Father, forgive them. In Pauline Christology the intercession of Christ has two components, both in the present and at the Last Judgement; this is expressed in Romans 8:33-34 in terms of "Who shall lay anything to the charge of God's elect?" and "Who is he that condemneth?", in Hebrews 7:25 in terms of the activities of Christ as the High Priest. In Christian teachings, the intercession of Christ before God relates to Jesus' anamnesis before God during the Last Supper and the continuing memorial nature of the Eucharistic offering. In the Christology of salvation, the one time offering of Christ via his willing sacrifice at Calvary is distinguished from, but relates to his continued intercession from Heaven in his role as the High Priest, his role at the Last Judgement.
The notion of intercession by Christ as the Lamb of God relates to the imagery of the Lamb in Revelation 14:1:5 where those who are first saved "were purchased from among men" through the sacrifice of the lamb: These are they that follow the Lamb whithersoever he goeth. These were purchased from among the firstfruits unto God and unto the Lamb. From the Christological perspective, the intercession of Christ is distinguished from the Intercession of the Spirit. While 1 John 2:1 states "We have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous", John 14:16-17 includes the statement: And I will pray the Father, he shall give you another Comforter, that he may be with you for even the Spirit of truth: whom the world cannot receive; the distinction between the two forms of the advocacy can be interpreted in terms of the direction of the flow: in the first case Christ takes petitions to the Father in Heaven, in the second case the comforter flows from Heaven toward the hearts of believers.
Intercession of the Spirit Intercession of saints Session of Christ
The Athanasian Creed known as Pseudo-Athanasian Creed or Quicunque Vult, is a Christian statement of belief focused on Trinitarian doctrine and Christology. The Latin name of the creed, Quicunque vult, is taken from the opening words, "Whosoever wishes"; the creed has been used by Christian churches since the sixth century. It is the first creed in which the equality of the three persons of the Trinity is explicitly stated, it differs from the Nicene-Constantinopolitan and Apostles' Creeds in the inclusion of anathemas, or condemnations of those who disagree with the creed. Accepted among Western Christians, including the Roman Catholic Church and some Anglican churches, Lutheran churches, ancient, liturgical churches the Athanasian Creed has been used in public worship less and less but part of it can be found as an "Authorized Affirmation of Faith" in the recent Common Worship liturgy of the Church of England, in the Main Volume, on page 145, it was designed to distinguish Nicene Christianity from the heresy of Arianism.
Liturgically, this Creed was recited at the Sunday Office of Prime in the Western Church. The creed has never gained acceptance in liturgy among Eastern Christians since it was considered as one of many unorthodox fabrications that contained the Filioque clause. Today, the Athanasian Creed is used in the Western Church; when used, one common practice is to use it once a year on Trinity Sunday. A medieval account credited Athanasius of Alexandria, the famous defender of Nicene theology, as the author of the Creed. According to this account, Athanasius composed it during his exile in Rome and presented it to Pope Julius I as a witness to his orthodoxy; this traditional attribution of the Creed to Athanasius was first called into question in 1642 by Dutch Protestant theologian G. J. Voss, it has since been accepted by modern scholars that the creed was not authored by Athanasius, that it was not called a creed at all, nor was Athanasius' name attached to it. Athanasius' name seems to have become attached to the creed as a sign of its strong declaration of Trinitarian faith.
The reasoning for rejecting Athanasius as the author relies on a combination of the following: The creed was most written in Latin, while Athanasius composed in Greek. Neither Athanasius nor his contemporaries mention the Creed, it is not mentioned in any records of the ecumenical councils. It appears to address theological concerns, it was most circulated among Western Christians. The use of the creed in a sermon by Caesarius of Arles, as well as a theological resemblance to works by Vincent of Lérins, point to Southern Gaul as its origin; the most time frame is in the late fifth or early sixth century AD – at least 100 years after Athanasius. The theology of the creed is rooted in the Augustinian tradition, using exact terminology of Augustine's On the Trinity. In the late 19th century, there was a great deal of speculation about who might have authored the creed, with suggestions including Ambrose of Milan, Venantius Fortunatus, Hilary of Poitiers, among others; the 1940 discovery of a lost work by Vincent of Lérins, which bears a striking similarity to much of the language of the Athanasian Creed, have led many to conclude that the creed originated either with Vincent or with his students.
For example, in the authoritative modern monograph about the creed, J. N. D. Kelly asserts that Vincent of Lérins was not its author, but that it may have come from the same milieu, namely the area of Lérins in southern Gaul; the oldest surviving manuscripts of the Athanasian Creed date from the late 8th century. The Athanasian Creed is divided into two sections: lines 1–28 addressing the doctrine of the Trinity, lines 29–44 addressing the doctrine of Christology. Enumerating the three persons of the Trinity, the first section of the creed ascribes the divine attributes to each individually. Thus, each person of the Trinity is described as uncreated, limitless and omnipotent. While ascribing the divine attributes and divinity to each person of the Trinity, thus avoiding subordinationism, the first half of the Athanasian Creed stresses the unity of the three persons in the one Godhead, thus avoiding a theology of tritheism. Furthermore, although one God, the Father and Holy Spirit are distinct from each other.
For the Father is neither begotten. The text of the Athanasian Creed is as follows: The Christology of the second section is more detailed than that of the Nicene Creed, reflects the teaching of the First Council of Ephesus and the definition of the Council of Chalcedon; the Athanasian Creed uses the term substantia not only with respect to the relation of the Son to the Father according to his divine nature, but says the Son is substantia of his mother Mary according to his human nature. The Creed's wording thus excludes not only Sabellianism and Arianism, but the Christological heresies of Nestorianism and Eutychianism. A need for a clear confession against Arianism arose in western Europe when the Ostrogoths and Visigoths, who had Arian beliefs, invaded at th
Christology "the understanding of Christ," is the study of the nature and work of Jesus Christ. It studies Jesus Christ's humanity and divinity, the relation between these two aspects; the earliest Christian writings gave several titles to Jesus, such as Son of Man, Son of God and Kyrios, which were all derived from the Hebrew scriptures. These terms centered around two themes, namely "Jesus as a preexistent figure who becomes human and returns to God," and "Jesus as a creature elected and'adopted' by God."From the second to the fifth century, the relation of the human and divine nature of Christ was a major focus of debates in the early church and at the first seven ecumenical councils. The Council of Chalcedon in 451 issued a formulation of the hypostatic union of the two natures of Christ, one human and one divine, "united with neither confusion nor division". Most of the major branches of Western Christianity and Eastern Orthodoxy subscribe to this formulation, while many branches of Oriental Orthodox Churches reject it, subscribing to miaphysitism.
Christology "the understanding of Christ," is the study of the nature and work of Jesus Christ. It studies Jesus Christ's humanity and divinity, the relation between these two aspects. "Ontological Christology" analyzes the being of Jesus Christ. "Functional Christology" analyzes the works of Jesus Christ, while "soteriological Christology" analyzes the "salvific" standpoints of Christology. Several approaches can be distinguished within Christology; the term "Christology from above" or "high Christology" refers to approaches that include aspects of divinity, such as Lord and Son of God, the idea of the pre-existence of Christ as the Logos, as expressed in the prologue to the Gospel of John. These approaches interpret the works of Christ in terms of his divinity. According to Pannenberg, Christology from above "was far more common in the ancient Church, beginning with Ignatius of Antioch and the second century Apologists." The term "Christology from below" or "low Christology" refers to approaches that begin with the human aspects and the ministry of Jesus and move towards his divinity and the mystery of incarnation.
A basic Christological teaching is that the person of Jesus Christ is both divine. The human and divine natures of Jesus Christ form a duality, as they coexist within one person. There are no direct discussions in the New Testament regarding the dual nature of the Person of Christ as both divine and human, since the early days of Christianity, theologians have debated various approaches to the understanding of these natures, at times resulting in ecumenical councils, schisms. Historical christological doctrines which gained broader support are Monophysitism, Miaphysitism and Monarchianism. Influential Christologies which were broadly condemned as heretical are Docetism and Nestorianism. In Christian theology, atonement is the method by which human beings can be reconciled to God through Christ's sacrificial suffering and death. Atonement is the forgiving or pardoning of sin in general and original sin in particular through the suffering and resurrection of Jesus, enabling the reconciliation between God and his creation.
Due to the influence of Gustaf Aulèn's Christus Victor, the various theories or paradigma's of atonement are grouped as "classical paradigm," "objective paradigm," and the "subjective paradigm": Classical paradigm:Ransom theory of atonement, which teaches that the death of Christ was a ransom sacrifice said to have been paid to Satan or to death itself, in some views paid to God the Father, in satisfaction for the bondage and debt on the souls of humanity as a result of inherited sin. Gustaf Aulén reinterpreted the ransom thory, calling it the Christus Victor doctrine, arguing that Christ's death was not a payment to the Devil, but defeated the powers of evil, which had held humankind in their dominion.. Theosis is a "corollary" of the recapitualtion. Objective paradigm: Satisfaction theory of atonement, developed by Anselm of Canterbury, which teaches that Jesus Christ suffered crucifixion as a substitute for human sin, satisfying God's just wrath against humankind's transgression due to Christ's infinite merit.
Penal substitution called "forensic theory" and "vicarious punishment,", a development by the Reformers of Anselm's satisfaction theory. Instead of considering sin as an affront to God's honour, it sees sin as the breaking of God's moral law. Penal substitution sees sinful man as being subject to God's wrath, with the essence of Jesus' saving work being his substitution in the sinner's place, bearing the curse in the place of man. Moral government theory, "which views God as both the loving creator and moral Governor of the universe." Subjective paradigm: Moral influence theory of atonement, developed, or most notably propagated, by Abelard, who argued that "Jesus died as the demonstration of God's love," a demonstration which can change the hearts and minds of the sinners, turning back to God. Moral example theory, developed by Faustus Socinus in his work De Jesu Christo servatore, who rejected the idea of "vicarious satisfaction." According to
New American Standard Bible
The New American Standard Bible is an English translation of the Bible by the Lockman Foundation. The New Testament was first published in 1963, the complete Bible in 1971; the most recent edition of the NASB text was published in 1995. The NASB was published in the following stages: Gospel of John The Gospels New Testament Psalms Complete Bible and New Testaments Modified Editions Updated Edition In parallel with the Bible itself, the NAS Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible was published in August 1997. For convenience, this Concordance uses the same word numbering system as Strong's Concordance; the New American Standard Bible is considered by some sources as the most translated of major 20th-century English Bible translations According to the NASB's preface, the translators had a "Fourfold Aim" in this work: These publications shall be true to the original Hebrew and Greek. They shall be grammatically correct, they shall be understandable. They shall give the Lord Jesus Christ the place which the Word gives Him.
The NASB is an original translation from the Hebrew and Greek texts, based on the same principles of translation, wording, as the American Standard Version of 1901. It offers an alternative to the Revised Standard Version, considered by some to be theologically liberal, to the 1929 revision of the ASV; the Hebrew text used for this translation was the third edition of Rudolf Kittel's Biblia Hebraica as well as the Dead Sea Scrolls. The Biblia Hebraica Stuttgartensia was consulted for the 1995 revision. For Greek, Eberhard Nestle's Novum Testamentum Graece was used. Seeing the need for a literal, modern translation of the English Bible, the translators sought to produce a contemporary English Bible while maintaining a word-for-word translation style. In cases where word-for-word literalness was determined to be unacceptable for modern readers, changes were made in the direction of more current idioms. In some such instances, the more literal renderings were indicated in footnotes; the greatest strength of the NASB is its fidelity to the original languages.
Additionally, the NASB includes printing of verses as individual units In 1992, the Lockman Foundation commissioned a limited revision of the NASB. In 1995, the Lockman Foundation reissued the NASB text as the NASB Updated Edition. Since it has become known as the "NASB", supplanting the 1977 text in current printings, save for a few. In the updated NASB, consideration was given to the latest available manuscripts with an emphasis on determining the best Greek text; the 26th edition of Nestle-Aland's Novum Testamentum Graece is followed. The Biblia Hebraica Stuttgartensia is employed together with the most recent light from lexicography, cognate languages, the Dead Sea Scrolls; the updated NASB represents recommended revisions and refinements, incorporates thorough research based on current English usage. Vocabulary and sentence structure were meticulously revised for greater understanding and smoother reading, hence increasing clarity and readability. Terms found in Elizabethan English such as "thy" and "thou" have been modernized, while verses with difficult word ordering are restructured.
Punctuation and paragraphing have been formatted for modernization, verbs with multiple meanings have been updated to better account for their contextual usage. YHWH is rendered LORD or GOD in capital letters in the NASB; the committee stated the reason as: "This name has not been pronounced by the Jews because of reverence for the great sacredness of the divine name. Therefore it has been translated LORD; the only exception is. In that case it is translated GOD in order to avoid confusion, it is known that for many years YHWH has been transliterated as Yahweh, however no complete certainty attaches to this pronunciation." This is in direct contrast to the preface of ASV of 70 years earlier, where the committee explained that "the American Revisers...were brought to the unanimous conviction that a Jewish superstition, which regarded the Divine Name as too sacred to be uttered, ought no longer to dominate in the English or any other version of the Old Testament." The translation work was done by a group of anonymous scholars sponsored by the Lockman Foundation.
According to the Lockman Foundation, the committee consisted of people from Christian institutions of higher learning and from evangelical Protestant, predominantly conservative, denominations. The foundation's Web site indicates that among the translators and consultants who contributed are Bible scholars with doctorates in biblical languages, theology, "or other advanced degrees", come from a variety of denominational backgrounds. More than 20 individuals worked on modernizing the NASB in accord with the most recent research. Marlowe, Michael D.. "New American Standard Bible". Retrieved March 19, 2005; the Lockman Foundation. "Preface to the New American Stan
Theotokos is a title of Mary, mother of Jesus, used in Eastern Christianity. The usual Latin translations, Dei Genetrix or Deipara, are "Mother of God" or "God-bearer"; the title has been in use since the 3rd century, in the Syriac tradition in the Liturgy of Mari and Addai and the Liturgy of St James. The Council of Ephesus in AD 431 decreed that Mary is the Theotokos because her son Jesus is both God and man: one divine person with two natures intimately and hypostatically united; the title of Mother of God is most used in English due to the lack of a satisfactory equivalent of the Greek τόκος / Latin genetrix. For the same reason, the title is left untranslated, as "Theotokos", in Orthodox liturgical usage of other languages. Theotokos is used as the term for an Eastern icon, or type of icon, of the Mother with Child, as in "the Theotokos of Vladimir" both for the original 12th-century icon and for icons that are copies or imitate its composition. Theotokos is an adjectival compound of two Greek words Θεός "God" and τόκος "childbirth, parturition.
A close paraphrase would be " whose offspring is God" or " who gave birth to one, God". The usual English translation is "Mother of God"; the Church Slavonic translation is Bogoroditsa. The full title of Mary in Slavic Orthodox tradition is Прест҃а́ѧ влⷣчица на́ша бцⷣа и҆ прⷭ҇нод҃ва мр҃і́а, from Greek Ὑπεραγία δεσποινίς ἡμῶν Θεοτόκος καὶ ἀειπαρθένος Μαρία "Our Most Holy Lady Theotokos and Ever-Virgin Mary". German has the translation Gottesgebärerin. "Mother of God" is the literal translation of a distinct title in Greek, Μήτηρ του Θεού, a term which has an established usage of its own in traditional Orthodox and Catholic theological writing and iconography. In an abbreviated form, ΜΡ ΘΥ, it is found on Eastern icons, where it is used to identify Mary; the Russian term is Матерь Божия. Variant forms are the compounds Θεομήτωρ and Μητρόθεος, which are found in patristic and liturgical texts; the theological dispute over the term concerned the term Θεός "God" vs. Χριστός "Christ", not τόκος vs. μήτηρ, the two terms have been used as synonyms throughout Christian tradition.
Both terms are known to have existed alongside one another since the early church, but it has been argued in modern times, that the term "Mother of God" is unduly suggestive of Godhead having its origin in Mary, imparting to Mary the role of a Mother Goddess. But this is an exact reiteration of the objection by Nestorius, resolved in the 5th century, to the effect that the term "Mother" expresses the relation of Mary to the incarnate Son ascribed to Mary in Christian theology. Theologically, the term "Mother of God" should not be taken to imply that Mary is the source of the existence of the divine person of Jesus, who existed with the Father from all eternity, or of her Son's divinity. Within the Orthodox and Catholic tradition, Mother of God has not been understood, nor been intended to be understood, as referring to Mary as Mother of God from eternity — that is, as Mother of God the Father — but only with reference to the birth of Jesus, that is, the Incarnation. To make it explicit, it is sometimes translated Mother of God Incarnate..
The Nicene-Costantinopolitan Creed of 381 affirmed the Christian faith on "one Lord Jesus Christ, the only-begotten Son of God, begotten of the Father before all worlds", that "came down from heaven, was incarnate by the Holy Ghost and of the Virgin Mary, was made man". Since that time, the expression "Mother of God" referred to the Dyophysite doctrine of the hypostatic union, about the uniqueness with the twofold nature of Jesus Christ God, both human and divine. Since that time, Jesus was affirmed as true Man and true God from all eternity; the status of Mary as Theotokos was a topic of theological dispute in the 4th and 5th centuries and was the subject of the decree of the Council of Ephesus of 431 to the effect that, in opposition to those who denied Mary the title Theotokos but called her Christotokos, Mary is Theotokos because her son Jesus is one person, both God and man and human. This decree created the Nestorian Schism. Cyril of Alexandria wrote, "I am amazed that there are some who are in doubt as to whether the holy Virgin should be called Theotokos or not.
For if our Lord Jesus Christ is God, how is the holy Virgin who gave birth, not?". But the argument of Nestorius was that divine and human natures of Christ were distinct, while Mary is evidently the Christotokos, it could be misleading to describe her as the "bearer of God". At issue is the interpretation of the Incarnation, the nature of the hypostatic union of Christ's human and divine natures between Christ's conception and birth. Within the Orthodox doctrinal teaching on the economy of salvation, Mary's identity and status as Theotokos is acknowledged as indispensable
Imitation of Christ
In Christian theology, the Imitation of Christ is the practice of following the example of Jesus. In Eastern Christianity the term Life in Christ is sometimes used for the same concept; the ideal of the Imitation of Christ has been an important element of both Christian ethics and spirituality. References to this concept and its practice are found in the earliest Christian documents, e.g. the Pauline Epistles. Saint Augustine viewed the imitation of Christ as the fundamental purpose of Christian life, as a remedy for the imitation of the sins of Adam. Saint Francis of Assisi believed in the physical as well as the spiritual imitation of Christ, advocated a path of poverty and preaching like Jesus, poor at birth in the manger and died naked on the cross. Thomas à Kempis, on the other hand, presented a path to The Imitation of Christ based on a focus on the interior life and withdrawal from the world; the theme of imitation of Christ existed in all phases of Byzantine theology, in the 14th-century book Life in Christ Nicholas Cabasilas viewed "living one's own personal life" in Christ as the fundamental Christian virtue.
Why art thou proud, O man? God for thee became low. Thou wouldst be ashamed to imitate a lowly man; the word "imitate" does not appear in the Canonical Gospels, but the word "follow" is applied to those who believed in Jesus, Jesus is quoted as requiring imitation in some form. But in 1 Thessalonians 1:6 Apostle Paul refers to the imitation of Christ, as well as himself, states: "And ye became imitators of us, of the Lord, having received the word in much affliction, with joy of the Holy Spirit". In 1 Peter 2:21, Apostle Peter explains the duty of Christians to "follow his steps". For Paul the imitation of Christ involves readiness to be shaped by the Holy Spirit as in Romans 8:4 and Romans 8:11, a self-giving service of love to others as in 1 Corinthians 13 and Galatians 5:13; the imitation of Christ, as in Ephesians 5:1 is viewed by Paul as a path to the imitation of God: "Be ye therefore imitators of God, as beloved children, walk in love as Christ loved you". The early Church had little interest in the "historical Jesus" and this prevented an immediate development of the concept of literal imitation.
Instead the earliest concepts of imitation focused on the works of the Holy Spirit, self-sacrifice and martyrdom. In time, this focus changed, by the time of Saint Francis of Assisi attempts at literal imitation of Christ were well established. By the 4th century, the ideal of the imitation of Christ was well accepted and for Saint Augustine, it was the ultimate goal of conversion, the fundamental purpose of Christian life. Book 7 of the Confessions of St. Augustine includes a well known passage on "at least imitate the lowly God" that confirms the strong Christian tradition of the imitation of Christ around the year 400. Augustine viewed human beings as creatures who approach the Holy Trinity through likeness, i.e. by imitating the Son, bound to the Father through the grace of the Holy Spirit. Thus for Augustine, the imitation of Christ is enabled by the Spirit. Augustine viewed Christ as both a sign of grace and an example to be followed, in his writings stated that the imitation of Christ leads to a mystical union with him.
By the end of the 9th century, the physical imitation of Christ had grown in popularity among Christians and the 895 Council of Tribur considered triple immersion in Baptism as an imitation of the three days of Jesus in the tomb, the rising from the water as an imitation of the Resurrection of Jesus. This period witnessed a growing trend towards the denial of the flesh in favor of the soul among the monastic communities, who saw the rebuffing of the physical body as a path to a higher level of spiritual achievement. In the 12th century, Saint Bernard of Clairvaux considered humility and love as key examples of the imitation of Christ. Bernard argued that the Father sent his Son, who in turn sent the Spirit to the Church, that those who, in imitation of Christ, humble themselves and serve the Church will obtain intimate union with God. Early in the 13th century, groups of mendicant friars entered the scene, aiming to imitate Christ by living a life of poverty as well as preaching, as Jesus had done, following him to martyrdom, if necessary.
Chief among these were the followers of Saint Francis of Assisi, who believed in the physical as well as the spiritual imitation of Christ. Francis viewed poverty as a key element of the imitation of Christ, "poor at birth in the manger, poor as he lived in the world, naked as he died on the cross". Francis drew attention to the poverty of the Virgin Mary, viewed that as a noble imitation, he was the first reported case of stigmata in the history of Christianity, viewed his stigmata as a key element of his imitation of Christ. In the 13th century, Saint Thomas Aquinas considered imitation of Christ essential for a religious life. In Summa Theologiæ 22.214.171.124 Aquinas stated that "Religious perfection consists chiefly in the imitation of Christ" and in 3.65.2 he positioned the "perfection of the spiritual life" as an imitation of Christ, with Baptism as the first step in the path towards the imitation of a perfect Christ. The theme of imitation of Christ continued to exist in all phases of Byzantine theology, although some Eastern theologians such as Nicholas Cabasilas preferred to use the term "Life in Christ", as in his 14th-century book of the same title.
Cabasilas advocated "living one's own personal life" in Christ as a fundamental Christian virtue. Cabasilas also
Council of Ephesus
The Council of Ephesus was a council of Christian bishops convened in Ephesus in AD 431 by the Roman Emperor Theodosius II. This third ecumenical council, an effort to attain consensus in the church through an assembly representing all of Christendom, confirmed the original Nicene Creed, condemned the teachings of Nestorius, Patriarch of Constantinople, who held that the Virgin Mary may be called the Christotokos, "Birth Giver of Christ" but not the Theotokos, "Birth Giver of God", it met in July 431 at the Church of Mary in Ephesus in Anatolia. Nestorius' doctrine, which emphasized the distinction between Christ's human and divine natures and argued that Mary should be called Christotokos but not Theotokos, had brought him into conflict with other church leaders, most notably Cyril, Patriarch of Alexandria. Nestorius himself had requested the Emperor to convene the council, hoping that it would prove his orthodoxy; the council declared Mary as Theotokos. Nestorius' dispute with Cyril had led the latter to seek validation from Pope Celestine I, who authorized Cyril to request that Nestorius recant his position or face excommunication.
Nestorius pleaded with the Eastern Roman Emperor Theodosius II to call a council in which all grievances could be aired, hoping that he would be vindicated and Cyril condemned. 250 bishops were present. The proceedings were conducted in a heated atmosphere of confrontation and recriminations and created severe tensions between Cyril and Theodosius II. Nestorius was decisively outplayed by Cyril and removed from his see, his teachings were anathematized; this precipitated the Nestorian Schism, by which churches supportive of Nestorius in the Persian Empire of the Sassanids, were severed from the rest of Christendom and became known as Nestorian Christianity, or the Church of the East, whose present-day representatives are the Assyrian Church of the East, the Ancient Church of the East, the Chaldean Syrian Church, the Chaldean Catholic Church. Nestorius himself retired to a monastery. McGuckin cites the "innate rivalry" between Alexandria and Constantinople as an important factor in the controversy between Cyril of Alexandria and Nestorius.
However, he emphasizes that, as much as political competition contributed to an "overall climate of dissent", the controversy cannot be reduced to the level of "personality clashes" or "political antagonisms". According to McGuckin, Cyril viewed the "elevated intellectual argument about christology" as one and the same as the "validity and security of the simple Christian life". Within Constantinople, some supported the Roman-Alexandrian and others supported the Nestorian factions. For example, Pulcheria supported the Roman-Alexandrian popes while the emperor and his wife supported Nestorius. Contention over Nestorius' teachings, which he developed during his studies at the School of Antioch revolved around his rejection of the long-used title Theotokos for the Virgin Mary. Shortly after his arrival in Constantinople, Nestorius became involved in the disputes of two theological factions, which differed in their Christology. McGuckin ascribes Nestorius' importance to his being the representative of the Antiochene tradition and characterizes him as a "consistent, if none too clear, exponent of the longstanding Antiochene dogmatic tradition."
Nestorius was surprised that what he had always taught in Antioch without any controversy whatsoever should prove to be so objectionable to the Christians of Constantinople. Nestorius emphasized the dual natures of Christ, trying to find a middle ground between those who emphasized the fact that in Christ God had been born as a man, insisted on calling the Virgin Mary Theotokos, those that rejected that title because God as an eternal being could not have been born. Nestorius suggested the title Christotokos, but this proposal did not gain acceptance on either side. Nestorius tried to answer a question considered unsolved: "How can Jesus Christ, being part man, not be a sinner as well, since man is by definition a sinner since the Fall?" To solve that he taught that Mary, the mother of Jesus gave birth to the incarnate Christ, not the divine Logos who existed before Mary and indeed before time itself. The Logos occupied the part of the human soul, but wouldn't the absence of a human soul make Jesus less human?
Nestorius rejected this proposition, answering that, because the human soul was based on the archetype of the Logos, only to become polluted by the Fall, Jesus was "more" human for having the Logos and not "less". Nestorius argued that the Virgin Mary should be called Christotokos, Greek for "Birth Giver of Christ", not Theotokos, Greek for "Birth Giver of God". Nestorius believed that no union between the divine was possible. If such a union of human and divine occurred, Nestorius believed that Christ could not be con-substantial with God and con-substantial with us because he would grow, mature and die and would possess the power of God that would separate him from being equal to humans. According to McGuckin, several mid-twentieth-century accounts have tended to "romanticise" Nestorius. Nestorius's opponents charged him with detaching Christ's divin