The Byzantine Christ: Person, Nature, and Will in the Christology of Saint Maximus the Confessor

Hardcover | November 4, 2004

byDemetrios Bathrellos

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St Maximus the Confessor is one of the giants of Christian theology. His doctrine of two wills gave the final shape to ancient Christology and was ratified by the Sixth Ecumenical Council in AD 681. This study throws new light upon one of the most interesting periods of historical andsystematic theology. Its focus is the seventh century, the century that saw the rapid expansion of Islam, and the Empire's failed attempt to retain many of its south-eastern provinces by inventing and promoting the heresy of Monothelitism (only one will in Christ) as a bridge between the ByzantineChurch and the anti-Chalcedonian Churches which prevailed in some of these areas.From the point of view of systematic theology, the book examines the meaning of the terms person/hypostasis, nature/essence, and will in the context of Christology after the Council of Chalcedon (AD 451), with special reference to Maximus. It also explores the complex question of the human will ofJesus Christ and its relation to his person and natures. The Byzantine Christ enhances our understanding of Eastern Orthodox theology and of some of the reasons that still separate it both from Western Christianity and from the so-called Oriental Orthodox Churches.

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St Maximus the Confessor is one of the giants of Christian theology. His doctrine of two wills gave the final shape to ancient Christology and was ratified by the Sixth Ecumenical Council in AD 681. This study throws new light upon one of the most interesting periods of historical andsystematic theology. Its focus is the seventh centur...

Demetrios Bathrellos is Priest in the Greek Cathedral of the Holy Wisdom, London.
Format:HardcoverDimensions:240 pages, 8.5 × 5.43 × 0.74 inPublished:November 4, 2004Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0199258643

ISBN - 13:9780199258642

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Table of Contents

IntroductionI. From the Fourth Century to Chalcedon and Beyond1. Introduction2. Apollinarism3. Nestorianism4. St Cyril of Alexandria5. The Council of Chalcedon6. The Anti-Chalcedonian Challenge7. The Post-Chalcedonian Response8. The Fifth Ecumenical Council9. ConclusionsII. The Monothelite Heresy of the Seventh Century1. Introduction2. Historical Outline3. Reviewing the Literature4. The Christology of the Monothelites of the Seventh Century5. The Background of the Monothelite Heresy of the Seventh Century6. Conclusions and AssessmentIII. The Dyothelite Christology of St Maximus the Confessor1. Introduction2. Person-Hypostasis, Nature-Essence, Unity and Distinction in the Christology of St Maximus3. The Notion of Will in St Maximus4. St Maximus' Defence of Dyothelite Christology5. The Particularity and Function of the Human Will of Jesus Christ According to St MaximusIV. Further Issues Relating to St Maximus' Dyothelite Christology and their Theological Significance1. Introduction2. Person or Nature? Leo, Maximus, and the Question of the Subject of Willing3. Concluding Remarks on St Maximus' Understanding of the Will and its Theological Significance4. St Maximus' Early Acceptance of `One Energy' and the Possibility of a Legitimate Monothelite Terminology5. Epilogue