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Christian Beginnings: From Nazareth to Nicaea

Average Rating 4.5
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  • Posted July 5, 2013

    An outstanding review on how Christians accepted Jesus as the Son of God.

    A huge majority of Christians blithely accept Jesus as the Son of God
    without having any idea on how this belief came to be accepted by the Church.

    Geza Vermes, in his book Christian Beginnings, traces the progress of an
    internal debate among early believers that finally ended when early
    Christians produced the Nicene Creed in 325. The Council of Nicea
    produced two statements. One was short and spelled out the basic
    beliefs of Christianity including the statement that Jesus was the son
    of God; the other second a detailed statement of the beliefs of the church.
    Ninety percent of the Christian who read Vermes are
    bound to be astounded by the variety of positions taken by the contenders ranging from how could this itinerant preacher be the son of God? to total belief Jesus was just that. The fact that the argument was not settled for nearly 300 years is testimony to how deep the divisions were within the early church.
    Vermes goes beyond an outline of the arguments, identifying the leading
    figures and their positions. Even more impressive is his extensive
    identification of major supporters of the contenders and their beliefs.
    This writer urges readers who will be amazed at how many differing views were stated in this crucial early debate to look at the present state of Christianity and how wide the differences are among churches who profess to be Christian.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 27, 2013


    The author of CHRISTIAN BEGINNINGS: FROM NAZARETH TO NICAEA, Geza Vermes, describes to us in complete detail the early evolution of the Roman Catholic religion, from it’s infancy through to the Council of Nicaea in 325 AD, and how this Council gathering of early church leaders helped formulate part of what is now doctrine of the Roman Catholic Church.
    The origin of Jesus’ religion, which is based upon Jewish culture and history and upon Mosiac laws, is reviewed and brings to this discussion a better understanding of the beliefs the Jewish people of that time and of how a new religion could possibly have developed from this era.

    There has been fierce debate among the early Christians leaders as to Jesus’ divinity, which was at the forefront of the infancy stages of Christianity. These differences existed and were argued upon, from the original twelve Apostles, Paul and his followers, all through to the Council of Nicaea, during which the Nicene Creed (or Apostles’ Creed) was formulated (and still spoken during the Roman Catholic Mass today) and put forth as doctrine. The divinity of Jesus was debated for over 300 years, and it was decided. The consubstantiality of not just the Father and Son, but of the Holy Trinity was put into prayer. However, these men of the church decided what was to be church doctrine based upon their own agendas and not upon the actual events which occurred during the life of the historical Jesus, as was written in the original Gospels. Mr. Vermes brings us through all the politics, hidden agendas, and religious history of those first few centuries, and just how much it has deviated from Jesus’ teachings.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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