Nontrinitarianism is a form of Christianity that rejects the mainstream Christian doctrine of the Trinity—the teaching that God is three distinct hypostases or persons who are coeternal and indivisibly united in one being, or essence. Certain religious groups that emerged during the Protestant Reformation have been known as antitrinitarian, but are not considered Protestant in popular discourse due to their nontrinitarian nature. According to churches that consider the decisions of ecumenical councils final, Trinitarianism was definitively declared to be Christian doctrine at the 4th-century ecumenical councils, that of the First Council of Nicaea, which declared the full divinity of the Son, the First Council of Constantinople, which declared the divinity of the Holy Spirit. In terms of number of adherents, nontrinitarian denominations comprise a minority of modern Christianity; the largest nontrinitarian Christian denominations are The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Oneness Pentecostals, Jehovah's Witnesses, La Luz del Mundo and the Iglesia ni Cristo, though there are a number of other smaller groups, including Christadelphians, Christian Scientists, Dawn Bible Students, Living Church of God, Assemblies of Yahweh, Israelite Church of God in Jesus Christ, Members Church of God International, Unitarian Universalist Christians, The Way International, The Church of God International, the United Church of God.
Nontrinitarian views differ on the nature of God and the Holy Spirit. Various nontrinitarian philosophies, such as adoptionism and subordinationism existed prior to the establishment of the Trinity doctrine in AD 325, 381, 431, at the Councils of Nicaea and Ephesus. Nontrinitarianism was renewed by Cathars in the 11th through 13th centuries, in the Unitarian movement during the Protestant Reformation, in the Age of Enlightenment of the 18th century, in some groups arising during the Second Great Awakening of the 19th century; the doctrine of the Trinity, as held in mainstream Christianity, is not present in the other major Abrahamic religions. Christian apologists and other Church Fathers of the 2nd and 3rd centuries, having adopted and formulated the Logos Christology, considered the Son of God as the instrument used by the supreme God, the Father, to bring the creation into existence. Justin Martyr, Theophilus of Antioch, Hippolytus of Rome and Tertullian in particular state that the internal Logos of God —his impersonal divine reason—was begotten as Logos uttered, becoming a person to be used for the purpose of creation.
The Encyclopædia Britannica states: "to some Christians the doctrine of the Trinity appeared inconsistent with the unity of God.... They therefore denied it, accepted Jesus Christ, not as incarnate God, but as God's highest creature by whom all else was created.... View in the early Church long contended with the orthodox doctrine." Although the nontrinitarian view disappeared in the early Church and the Trinitarian view became an orthodox doctrine of modern Christianity, variations of the nontrinitarian view are still held by a small number of Christian groups and denominations. Various views exist regarding the relationships between the Father and Holy Spirit; those who believe that Jesus is not God, nor equal to God, but was either God's subordinate Son, a messenger from God, or prophet, or the perfect created human: Adoptionism holds that Jesus became divine at his baptism or at his resurrection. Arius' position was that the Son was brought forth as the first of God's creations, that the Father created all things through the Son.
Arius taught that in the creation of the universe, the Father was the ultimate creator, supplying all the materials and directing the design, while the Son worked the materials, making all things at the bidding and in the service of the Father, by which "through all things came into existence". Arianism became the dominant view in some regions in the time of the Roman Empire, notably the Visigoths until 589; the third Council of Sirmium in 357 was the high point of Arianism. The Seventh Arian Confession held that both homoousios and homoiousios were unbiblical and that the Father is greater than the Son: "But since many persons are disturbed by questions concerning what is called in Latin substantia, but in Greek ousia, that is, to make it understood more as to'coessential,' or what is called,'like-in-essence,' there ought to be no mention of any of these at all, nor exposition of them in the Church, for this reason and for this consideration, that in divine Scripture nothing is written about them, that they are above men's knowledge and above men's understanding".
They interpret verses such as John 1:1 to refer to God's "plan" existing in God's mind before Christ's birth.
Anabaptism is a Christian movement which traces its origins to the Radical Reformation. The movement is seen as an offshoot of Protestantism, although this view has been challenged by some Anabaptists. 4 million Anabaptists live in the world today with adherents scattered across all inhabited continents. In addition to a number of minor Anabaptist groups, the most numerous include the Mennonites at 2.1 million, the German Baptists at 1.5 million, the Amish at 300,000 and the Hutterites at 50,000. In the 21st century there are large cultural differences between assimilated Anabaptists, who do not differ much from evangelicals or mainline Protestants, traditional groups like the Amish, the Old Colony Mennonites, the Old Order Mennonites, the Hutterites and the Old German Baptist Brethren; the early Anabaptists formulated their beliefs in the Schleitheim Confession, in 1527. Anabaptists believe that baptism is valid only when the candidate confesses his or her faith in Christ and wants to be baptized.
This believer's baptism is opposed to baptism of infants, who are not able to make a conscious decision to be baptized. Anabaptists are those. Other Christian groups with different roots practice believer's baptism, such as Baptists, but these groups are not seen as Anabaptist; the Amish and Mennonites are direct descendants of the early Anabaptist movement. Schwarzenau Brethren and the Apostolic Christian Church are considered developments among the Anabaptists; the name Anabaptist means "one who baptizes again". Their persecutors named them this, referring to the practice of baptizing persons when they converted or declared their faith in Christ if they had been baptized as infants. Anabaptists required that baptismal candidates be able to make a confession of faith, chosen and so rejected baptism of infants; the early members of this movement did not accept the name Anabaptist, claiming that infant baptism was not part of scripture and was therefore null and void. They said that baptizing self-confessed believers was their first true baptism: I have never taught Anabaptism....
But the right baptism of Christ, preceded by teaching and oral confession of faith, I teach, say that infant baptism is a robbery of the right baptism of Christ. Anabaptists were and long persecuted starting in the 16th century by both Magisterial Protestants and Roman Catholics because of their interpretation of scripture which put them at odds with official state church interpretations and with government. Anabaptism was never established by any state and therefore never enjoyed any of the privileges that come with it. Most Anabaptists adhered to a literal interpretation of the Sermon on the Mount which precluded taking oaths, participating in military actions, participating in civil government; some groups who practiced rebaptism, now extinct, believed otherwise and complied with these requirements of civil society. They were thus technically Anabaptists though conservative Amish, Mennonites and some historians consider them outside true Anabaptism. Conrad Grebel wrote in a letter to Thomas Müntzer in 1524: True Christian believers are sheep among wolves, sheep for the slaughter...
Neither do they use worldly war, since all killing has ceased with them. Anabaptists are considered to have begun with the Radical Reformers in the 16th century, but historians classify certain people and groups as their forerunners because of a similar approach to the interpretation and application of the Bible. For instance, Petr Chelčický, a 15th-century Bohemian reformer, taught most of the beliefs considered integral to Anabaptist theology. Medieval antecedents may include the Brethren of the Common Life, the Hussites, Dutch Sacramentists, some forms of monasticism; the Waldensians represent a faith similar to the Anabaptists. Medieval dissenters and Anabaptists who held to a literal interpretation of the Sermon on the Mount share in common the following affirmations: The believer must not swear oaths or refer disputes between believers to law-courts for resolution, in accordance with 1 Corinthians 6:1–11; the believer must not offer forcible resistance to wrongdoers, nor wield the sword.
No Christian has the jus gladii. Matthew 5:39 Civil government belongs to the world; the believer belongs to God's kingdom, so must not fill any office nor hold any rank under government, to be passively obeyed. John 18:36 Romans 13:1–7 Sinners or unfaithful ones are to be excommunicated, excluded from the sacraments and from intercourse with believers unless they repent, according to 1 Corinthians 5:9–13 and Matthew 18:15 seq. but no force is to be used towards them. On December 27, 1521, three "prophets" appeared in Wittenberg from Zwickau who were influenced by Thomas Müntzer—Thomas Dreschel, Nicholas Storch, Mark Thomas Stübner, they preached an radical alternative to Lutheranism. Their preaching helped to stir the feelings concerning the social crisis which erupted in the German Peasants' War in southern Germany in 1525 as a revolt against feudal oppression. Under the leadership of Müntzer, it became a war against all constituted authorities and an attempt to establish by revolution an ideal Christian commonwealth, with absolute equality among persons and the community of goods.
The Zwickau prophets were not Anabaptists.
The East–West Schism called the Great Schism and the Schism of 1054, was the break of communion between what are now the Catholic Church and Eastern Orthodox churches, which had lasted until the 11th century. The Schism was the culmination of theological and political differences between the Christian East and West which had developed over the preceding centuries. A succession of ecclesiastical differences and theological disputes between the Greek East and Latin West pre-dated the formal rupture that occurred in 1054. Prominent among these were the issues of the procession of the Holy Spirit, whether leavened or unleavened bread should be used in the Eucharist, the Bishop of Rome's claim to universal jurisdiction, the place of the See of Constantinople in relation to the Pentarchy. In 1053, the first step was taken in the process which led to formal schism: the Greek churches in southern Italy were forced either to close or to conform to Latin practices. In retaliation, the Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople Michael I Cerularius ordered the closure of all Latin churches in Constantinople.
In 1054, the papal legate sent by Leo IX travelled to Constantinople for purposes that included refusing to Cerularius the title of "Ecumenical Patriarch" and insisting that he recognize the Pope's claim to be the head of all the churches. The main purpose of the papal legation was to seek help from the Byzantine Emperor in view of the Norman conquest of southern Italy and to deal with recent attacks by Leo of Ohrid against the use of unleavened bread and other Western customs, attacks that had the support of Cerularius. Historian Axel Bayer says the legation was sent in response to two letters, one from the Emperor seeking assistance in arranging a common military campaign by the eastern and western empires against the Normans, the other from Cerularius. On the refusal of Cerularius to accept the demand, the leader of the legation, Cardinal Humbert of Silva Candida, O. S. B. Excommunicated him, in return Cerularius excommunicated Humbert and the other legates; this was only the first act in a centuries-long process that became a complete schism.
The validity of the Western legates' act is doubtful, since Pope Leo had died and Cerularius' excommunication applied only to the legates personally. Still, the Church split along doctrinal, linguistic and geographical lines, the fundamental breach has never been healed, with each side sometimes accusing the other of having fallen into heresy and of having initiated the division; the Latin led Crusades, the Massacre of the Latins in 1182, the West's retaliation in the Sacking of Thessalonica in 1185, the capture and pillaging of Constantinople by the Fourth Crusade in 1204, the imposition of Latin patriarchs made reconciliation more difficult. Establishing Latin hierarchies in the Crusader states meant that there were two rival claimants to each of the patriarchal sees of Antioch and Jerusalem, making the existence of schism clear. Several attempts at reconciliation did not bear fruit. In 1965, Pope Paul VI and the Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople Athenagoras I nullified the anathemas of 1054, although this nullification of measures taken against a few individuals was a goodwill gesture and did not constitute any sort of reunion.
Contacts between the two sides continue: every year a delegation from each joins in the other's celebration of its patronal feast, Saints Peter and Paul for Rome and Saint Andrew for Constantinople, there have been a number of visits by the head of each to the other. The efforts of the Ecumenical Patriarchs towards reconciliation with the Catholic Church have been the target of sharp criticism from some fellow Orthodox; the schism between the Western and Eastern Mediterranean Christians resulted from a variety of political and theological factors which transpired over centuries. Historians regard the mutual excommunications of 1054 as the terminal event, it is difficult to agree on an exact date for the event. It may have started as early as the Quartodeciman controversy at the time of Victor of Rome. Orthodox apologists point to this incident as an example of claims by Rome to papal primacy and its rejection by Eastern Churches. Sporadic schisms in the common unions took place under Pope Damasus I in the 5th centuries.
Disputes about theological and other questions led to schisms between the Churches in Rome and Constantinople for 37 years from 482 to 519. Most sources agree that the separation between East and West is evident by the Photian schism for 4 years from 863–867. Apart from Rome in the West, "many major Churches of the East claim to have been founded by the apostles: Antioch by Peter and Paul, Alexandria by Mark, Constantinople by Andrew, Cyprus by Barnabas, Ethiopia by Matthew, India by Thomas, Edessa in eastern Syria by Thaddeus, Armenia by Bartholomew, Georgia by Simon the Zealot." Famous are the seven churches of Asia, mentioned in the opening chapters of the Book of Revelation. While the church at Rome claimed a special authority over the other churches, the extant documents of that era yield "no clear-cut claims to, or recognition, of papal primacy."Towards the end of the 2nd century, the Bishop of Rome, attempted to resolve the Quartodeciman controversy. The question was whether to celebrate Easter concurrently with the Jewish Passover, as Christians in the Roman province of Asia did, or to wait until the following Sunday, as was unanimously decreed by synods held in other Eastern provinces, such as those of Palestine and Pontus, the acts of which were still extant at the time of Eusebius, in Rome.
The pope attempted to excommunicate the church
State church of the Roman Empire
With the Edict of Thessalonica in 380 AD, Emperor Theodosius I made Nicene Christianity the Empire's state religion. The Eastern Orthodox Church, Oriental Orthodoxy, the Catholic Church each stand in that continuity. Earlier in the 4th century, following the Diocletianic Persecution of 303-313 and the Donatist controversy that arose in consequence, Constantine had convened councils of bishops to define the orthodoxy of the Christian faith, expanding on earlier Christian councils. A series of ecumenical councils convened by successive emperors met during the 4th and 5th centuries, but Christianity continued to suffer rifts and schisms surrounding the issues of Arianism and Miaphysitism. In the 5th century the Western Empire decayed as a polity: invaders sacked Rome in 410 and in 455, Odoacer, an Arian barbarian warlord, forced Romulus Augustus, the last nominal Western Emperor, to abdicate in 476. However, apart from the aforementioned schisms, the church as an institution persisted in communion, if not without tension, between the east and west.
In the 6th century the Byzantine armies of the Eastern Roman Emperor Justinian I recovered Italy and other sections of the western Mediterranean shore. The Eastern Roman Empire soon lost most of these gains, but it held Rome, as part of the Exarchate of Ravenna, until 751, a period known in church history as the Byzantine Papacy; the Muslim conquests of the 7th century would begin a process of converting most of the then-Christian world in West Asia and North Africa to Islam restricting the reach both of the Byzantine Empire and of its church. Missionary activity directed from Constantinople, the Byzantine capital, did not lead to a lasting expansion of the formal link between the church and the Byzantine emperor, since areas outside the empire's political and military control set up their own distinct churches, as in the case of Bulgaria in 919. Justinian I, who became emperor in Constantinople in 527, recognized the patriarchs of Rome, Alexandria and Jerusalem as the top leadership of the Church.
However, Justinian claimed "the right and duty of regulating by his laws the minutest details of worship and discipline, of dictating the theological opinions to be held in the Church". In Justinian's day, the Christian church was not under the Emperor's control in the East: the Oriental Orthodox had seceded, having rejected the Council of Chalcedon in 451, called the adherents of the imperially recognized Church "Melkites", from Syriac malkâniya "imperial". In western Europe, Christianity was subject to the laws and customs of nations that owed no allegiance to the emperor in Constantinople. While eastern-born popes appointed or at least confirmed by the Eastern Emperor continued to be loyal to him as their political lord, they refused to accept his authority in religious matters, or the authority of such a council as the imperially convoked Council of Hieria of 754. Pope Gregory III was the last Bishop of Rome to ask the Byzantine ruler to ratify his election. With the crowning of Charlemagne by Pope Leo III on 25 December 800 as Imperator Romanorum, the political split between east and west became irrevocable.
Spiritually, Chalcedonian Christianity persisted, at least in theory, as a unified entity until the Great Schism and its formal division with the mutual excommunication in 1054 of Rome and Constantinople. The Eastern Roman Empire collapsed with the Fall of Constantinople to the Islamic Ottoman Turks in 1453; the obliteration of the Empire's boundaries by Germanic peoples and an outburst of missionary activity among these peoples, who had no direct links with the Eastern Roman Empire, among Pictic and Celtic peoples who had never been part of the Roman Empire, fostered the idea of a universal church free from association with a particular state. On the contrary, "in the East Roman or Byzantine view, when the Roman Empire became Christian, the perfect world order willed by God had been achieved: one universal empire was sovereign, coterminous with it was the one universal church". Modern authors refer to the church associated with the emperor in a variety of ways: as the catholic church, the orthodox church, the imperial church, the imperial Roman church, or the Byzantine church, although some of these terms are used for wider communions extending outside the Roman Empire.
The legacy of the idea of a universal church carries on, directly or indirectly, in today's Catholic Church and Eastern Orthodox Church, as well as in others, such as the Anglican Communion. Before the end of the 1st century, the Roman authorities recognized Christianity as a separate religion from Judaism; the distinction already made in practice at the time of the Great Fire of Rome in the year 64, was given official status by the emperor Nerva around the year 98 by granting Christians exemption from paying the Fiscus Iudaicus, the annual tax upon the Jews. Pliny the Younger, when propraetor in Bithynia in 103, assumes in his letters to Trajan that because Christians do not pay the tax, they are not Jews. Since paying taxes had been one of the ways that Jews demonstrated their goodwill and loyalty toward the Empire, Christians had to negotiate their own alternatives to participating in the imperial cult, their refusal to worship the Roman gods or to pay homage to the emperor as divine resulted at times in persecution and martyrdom.
Church Father Tertullian, for instance, attempted to argue that Christianity was not inherently treasonous, that Christians could offer their own form of prayer for the well-being of the emperor
Eastern Christianity comprises church families that developed outside the Occident, with major bodies including the Eastern Orthodox Church, the Oriental Orthodox churches, the Eastern Catholic Churches, the denominations descended from the Church of the East. The Ukrainian Lutheran Church is an Eastern Christian church that uses the Byzantine Rite; the term is used in contrast with Western Christianity, although its scope has been one of continual discussion. Eastern Christianity consists of the Christian traditions and churches that developed distinctively over several centuries in the Middle East, Eastern Europe, Asia Minor, the Malabar coast of South India, parts of the Far East; the term does not describe religious denomination. Some Eastern churches have more in common and theologically with Western Christianity than with one another; the various Eastern churches do not refer to themselves as "Eastern", with the exception of the Assyrian Church of the East and the Ancient Church of the East.
The terms "Eastern" and "Western" in this regard originated with geographical divisions in Christianity mirroring the cultural divide between the Hellenistic east and Latin West, the political divide between the Western and Eastern Roman empires. Because the largest church in the East is the body known as the Eastern Orthodox Church, the term "Orthodox" is used in a similar fashion to "Eastern", to refer to specific historical Christian communions; however speaking, most Christian denominations, whether Eastern or Western, consider themselves to be "orthodox" as well as "catholic", as two of the Four Marks of the Church listed in the Nicene-Constantinopolitan Creed: "One, Holy and Apostolic". There are several liturgical rites in use among the Eastern churches; these are the Alexandrian Rite, the Antiochene Rite, the Armenian Rite, the Byzantine Rite, the East Syriac Rite and the West Syriac Rite. Eastern Christians do not share the same religious traditions, but do share many cultural traditions.
Christianity divided itself in the East during its early centuries both within and outside of the Roman Empire in disputes about Christology and fundamental theology, as well as national divisions. It would be many centuries that Western Christianity split from these traditions as its own communion. Major branches or families of Eastern Christianity, each of which has a distinct theology and dogma, include the Eastern Orthodox Church, the Oriental Orthodox communion, the Eastern Catholic Churches, the Assyrian Church of the East, the Ancient Church of the East, the Mar Thoma Syrian Church. In many Eastern churches, some parish priests administer the sacrament of chrismation to infants after baptism, priests are allowed to marry before ordination. While all the Eastern Catholic Churches recognize the authority of the Pope of Rome, some of them who have been part of the Orthodox Church or Oriental Orthodox churches follow the traditions of Orthodoxy or Oriental Orthodoxy, including the tradition of allowing married men to become priests.
The Eastern churches' differences from Western Christianity have as much, if not more, to do with culture and politics, as theology. For the non-Catholic Eastern churches, a definitive date for the commencement of schism cannot be given; the Church of the East declared independence from the churches of the Roman Empire at its general council in 424, before the Council of Ephesus in 431, so had nothing to do with the theology declared at that council. Oriental Orthodoxy separated after the Council of Chalcedon in 451. Since the time of the historian Edward Gibbon, the split between the Church of Rome and the Orthodox Church has been conveniently dated to 1054, though the reality is more complex; this split is sometimes referred to as the Great Schism, but now more referred to as the East–West Schism. This final schism reflected a larger cultural and political division which had developed in Europe and Southwest Asia during the Middle Ages and coincided with Western Europe's re-emergence from the collapse of the Western Roman Empire.
The Ukrainian Lutheran Church developed within Galicia around 1926, with its rites being based on the Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom, rather than on the Western Formula Missae; the Eastern Orthodox Church is a Christian body whose adherents are based in the Middle East and Turkey, Eastern Europe and the Caucasus, with a growing presence in the western world. Eastern Orthodox Christians accept the decisions of the first seven ecumenical councils. Eastern Orthodox Christianity identifies itself as the original Christian church founded by Christ and the Apostles, traces its lineage back to the early Church through the process of apostolic succession and unchanged theology and practice. Distinguishing characteristics of the Eastern Orthodox Church include the Byzantine Rite and an emphasis on the continuation of Holy Tradition, which it holds to be apostolic in nature; the Eastern Orthodox Church is organized into self-governing jurisdictions along geographical, ethnic or linguistic lines. Eastern Orthodoxy is thus made up of sixteen autocephalous bodies.
Smaller churches are autonomous and each have a mother church, autocephalous. All Eastern O
The Goths were an East Germanic people, two of whose branches, the Visigoths and the Ostrogoths, played an important role in the fall of the Western Roman Empire through the long series of Gothic Wars and in the emergence of Medieval Europe. The Goths dominated a vast area, which at its peak under the Germanic king Ermanaric and his sub-king Athanaric extended all the way from the Danube to the Don, from the Baltic Sea to the Black Sea; the Goths spoke one of the extinct East Germanic languages. In the Gothic language of Ostrogothic Italy they were called the Gut-þiuda, most translated as "Gothic people", but only attested as dative singular Gut-þiudai. In Old Norse they were known as the Gutar or Gotar, in Latin as the Gothi, in Greek as the Γότθοι, Gótthoi; the Goths have been referred to by many names at least in part because they comprised many separate ethnic groups, but because in early accounts of Indo-European and Germanic migrations in the Migration Period in general it was common practice to use various names to refer to the same group.
The Goths believed that the various names all derived from a single prehistoric ethnonym that referred to a uniform culture that flourished around the middle of the first millennium BC, i.e. the original Goths. The exact origin of the ancient Goths remains unknown. Evidence of them before they interacted with the Romans is limited; the traditional account of the Goths' early history depends on the Ostrogoth Jordanes' Getica written c. 551 AD. Jordanes states that the earliest migrating Goths sailed from what is now Sweden to what is now Poland. If this is accurate they may have been the people responsible for the Wielbark archaeological complex. Modern academics have abandoned this theory. Today, the Wielbark culture is thought to have developed from earlier cultures in the same area. Archaeological finds show close contacts between southern Sweden and the Baltic coastal area on the continent, further towards the south-east, evidenced by pottery, house types and graves. Rather than a massive migration, similarities in the material cultures may be products of long-term regular contacts.
However, the archaeological record could indicate that while his work is thought to be unreliable, Jordanes' story was based on an oral tradition with some basis in fact. Sometime around the 1st century AD, Germanic peoples may have migrated from Scandinavia to Gothiscandza, in present-day Poland. Early archaeological evidence in the traditional Swedish province of Östergötland suggests a general depopulation during this period. However, there is no archaeological evidence for a substantial emigration from Scandinavia and they may have originated in continental Europe. Upon their arrival on the Pontic Steppe, the Germanic tribes adopted the ways of the Eurasian nomads; the first Greek references to the Goths call them Scythians, since this area along the Black Sea had been occupied by an unrelated people of that name. The application of that designation to the Goths appears to be not ethnological but rather geographical and cultural - Greeks regarded both the ethnic Scythians and the Goths as barbarians.
The earliest known material culture associated with the Goths on the southern coast of the Baltic Sea is the Wielbark culture, centered on the modern region of Pomerania in northern Poland. This culture replaced the local Oxhöft or Oksywie culture in the 1st century AD, when a Scandinavian settlement developed in a buffer zone between the Oksywie culture and the Przeworsk culture; the culture of this area was influenced by southern Scandinavian culture beginning as early as the late Nordic Bronze Age and early Pre-Roman Iron Age. In fact, the Scandinavian influence on Pomerania and today's northern Poland from c. 1300 BC and onwards was so considerable that some see the culture of the region as part of the Nordic Bronze Age culture. In Eastern Europe the Goths formed part of the Chernyakhov culture of the 2nd to 5th centuries AD. Around 160 AD, in Central Europe, the first movements of the Migration Period were occurring, as Germanic tribes began moving south-east from their ancestral lands at the mouth of River Vistula, putting pressure on the Germanic tribes from the north and east.
As a result, in episodes of Gothic and Vandal warfare Germanic tribes crossed either the lower Danube or the Black Sea, led to the Marcomannic Wars, which resulted in widespread destruction and the first invasion of what is now Italy in the Roman Empire period. It has been suggested. Goths served in the Roman military and played a limited role, e.g. Gainas. In the first attested incursion in Thrace, the Goths were mentioned as Boranoi by Zosimus, as Boradoi by Gregory Thaumaturgus; the first incursion of the Roman Empire that can be attributed to Goths is the sack of Histria in 238. Several such raids followed in subsequent decades, in particular the Battle of Abrittus in 251, led by Cniva, in which the Roman Emperor Decius was killed. At the time, there were at least two groups of Goths: the Greuthungs. Goths were subsequently recruited into the Roman Army to fight in the Roman-Persian Wars, notably participating at the Battle of Misiche in 242; the Moesogoths settled in Moesia. The first seaborne raids took place in three subsequent years 255-257.
An unsuccessful attack on Pityus was followed in the second year by another, which sacked Pityus and Trabzon and ravaged large areas in th
Arianism is a nontrinitarian Christological doctrine which asserts the belief that Jesus Christ is the Son of God, begotten by God the Father at a point in time, a creature distinct from the Father and is therefore subordinate to him, but the Son is God. Arian teachings were first attributed to a Christian presbyter in Alexandria of Egypt; the teachings of Arius and his supporters were opposed to the theological views held by Homoousian Christians, regarding the nature of the Trinity and the nature of Christ. The Arian concept of Christ is based on the belief that the Son of God did not always exist but was begotten within time by God the Father. There was a dispute between two interpretations of Jesus' divinity based upon the theological orthodoxy of the time, one trinitarian and the other non-trinitarian, both of them attempted to solve its respective theological dilemmas. So there were two orthodox interpretations which initiated a conflict in order to attract adepts and define the new orthodoxy.
The two interpretations initiated a broader conflict as to which belief was the successor of Christian theology from its inception. The former was formally affirmed by the first two Ecumenical Councils, in the past several centuries, Arianism has continued to be viewed as "the heresy or sect of Arius"; as such, all mainstream branches of Christianity now consider Arianism to be heterodox and heretical. The trinitarianism, or homoousianism viewpoint, was promulgated by Athanasius of Alexandria, who insisted that Homoousianism theology was both the true nature of God and the teaching of Jesus. Arius stated: "If the Father begat the Son he, begotten had a beginning in existence, from this it follows there was a time when the Son was not." Nonetheless, the Ecumenical First Council of Nicaea of 325, convened by Emperor Constantine to ensure Church unity, deemed Arianism to be a heresy." According to Everett Ferguson, "The great majority of Christians had no clear views about the nature of the Trinity and they did not understand what was at stake in the issues that surrounded it."Ten years however, Constantine the Great, himself baptized by the Arian bishop Eusebius of Nicomedia, convened another gathering of Church leaders at the regional First Synod of Tyre in 335, to address various charges mounted against Athanasius by his pro-Arius detractors, such as "murder, illegal taxation and treason", following his refusal to readmit Arius into fellowship.
Athanasius was exiled to Trier following his conviction at Tyre of conspiracy, Arius was exonerated. Athanasius returned to Alexandria in 346 A. D. two years after the deaths of both Arius and Constantine. The Roman Emperors Constantius II and Valens were Arians or Semi-Arians, as was the first King of Italy and the Lombards were Arians or Semi-Arians until the 7th century. Visigothic Spain was Arian until 581. Arianism is used to refer to other nontrinitarian theological systems of the 4th century, which regarded Jesus Christ—the Son of God, the Logos—as either a begotten creature or as neither uncreated nor created in the sense other beings are created. Arius had been a pupil of Lucian of Antioch at Lucian's private academy in Antioch and inherited from him a modified form of the teachings of Paul of Samosata, he taught that the Son of God did not always exist together eternally. Arians taught that the Logos was a divine being begotten by God the Father before the creation of the world, made him a medium through whom everything else was created, that the Son of God is subordinate to God the Father.
A verse from Proverbs was used: "The Lord created me at the beginning of his work". Therefore, the Son was rather the first and the most perfect of God's creatures, he was made "God" only by the Father's permission and power. Controversy over Arianism arose in the late 3rd century and persisted throughout most of the 4th century, it involved most church members—from simple believers and monks to bishops and members of Rome's imperial family. Two Roman emperors, Constantius II and Valens, became Arians or Semi-Arians, as did prominent Gothic and Lombard warlords both before and after the fall of the Western Roman Empire; such a deep controversy within the Church during this period of its development could not have materialized without significant historical influences providing a basis for the Arian doctrines. Of the three hundred bishops in attendance at the Council of Nicea, two bishops did not sign the Nicene Creed that condemned Arianism. Emperor Constantine ordered a penalty of death for those who refused to surrender the Arian writings: In addition, if any writing composed by Arius should be found, it should be handed over to the flames, so that not only will the wickedness of his teaching be obliterated, but nothing will be left to remind anyone of him.
And I hereby make a public order, that if someone should be discovered to have hidden a writing composed by Arius, not to have brought it forward and destroyed it by fire, his penalty shall be death. As soon as he is discovered in this offence, he shall be submitted for capital punishment.... Reconstructing what Arius taught, why, is a formidable task, both because little of his own w