John Bugay, in his new thread, “Catholic Nick, Meet Cardinal Newman” (at Beggars All), touches on two issues that I have spent considerable time researching: Subordinationism and the Development of Doctrine.
I posted the following in the combox of John’s above mentioned thread:
Though this thread appears to have to be heading down a different path, I did want to share a few of my thoughts concerning the following that you wrote:
>>But I definitely think that the whole church -- and I include those individual Roman Catholics who have genuinely trusted in Christ and are part of the "one true church" -- needs to revisit the "church history" department and rethink a lot of things.>>
Me: Agreed. Your selections from Newman are an excellent starting point, for Newman realized before most that the view of the early Church, concerning the doctrine of the Trinity and Christology, held by so many through the centuries up to his day, was seriously flawed. One modern patristic scholar summarizes the pre-Nicene CFs with flawless accuracy and clarity:
“Indeed, until Athanasius began writing, every single theologian, East and West, had postulated some form of Subordinationism. It could, about the year 300, have been described as a fixed part of catholic theology.” (R.P.C Hanson, “The Achievement of Orthodoxy in the Fourth Century AD” in Rowan Williams, ed., The Making of Orthodoxy, New York, NY: Cambridge Univ. Press, 1989, p. 153.)
I have provided a considerable amount of documentation for Dr. Hansen’s assessment in a number of threads under the labels: Subordinationism, and Development of Doctrine.
With such knowledge in place, I think the next question that needs to be asked is: if the Scriptures are “clear” on “the essentials”, why did it take so long (300+ years) to achieve “orthodoxy”?
Grace and peace,