Named for the companion of Paul (Acts 9:27, 11:19-30, 14), the Epistle of Barnabas is technically anonymous, and scholars continue to debate whether its author was the canonical Barnabas, another early Christian leader named Barnabas, or simply someone else. The possible dates of composition for this epistle range from the reign of Diocletian (r. 79-81 CE) to around the time of the Bar Kokhba Revolt (132-135 CE). Widely understood as orthodox in character, the Barnabas
Introduction The Christological controversies of the early Church are simultaneously some of the most fascinating and frustrating events of Christian history. At the third of the four great ecumenical councils—Ephesus, in 431 AD—the theologies of Cyril of Alexandria and Nestorius of Constantinople squared off concerning the makeup of the person of Christ. The heart of this debate was whether there were two distinct persons (divine logos and human) within the incarnate Jesus Christ, or if
Of Ignatius of Antioch’s seven authentic letters, the most personal is his Epistle to Polycarp. Polycarp was bishop of Smyrna, a town to which Ignatius also wrote a more general epistle. In the letter to his fellow bishop, Ignatius (second or third bishop of Antioch in Syria) emphasized the importance of a unified and loving Christian community, reminding Polycarp to especially remember the care of the widows in Smyrna and to fulfill his episcopal duties.
For Ignatius of Antioch, Christianity was devoid of the complexities of Gnostic logic or Jewish-Christian exegesis; instead, true faith consisted of obedience to the divine and human Christ, whose teaching was received from the apostles and transmitted through the bishops. This perspective comes across quite clearly in his Epistle to the Philadelphians, were he notes the importance of the Gospel, Apostles, and Prophets and indicates that Jesus (and the Holy Spirit) remain superior to Judaism
Ignatius of Antioch’s letters stand as important records of the early faith and practice of followers of Jesus. His Epistle to the Romans is especially important, for it reveals his attitude toward his impending martyrdom at the hands of the Emperor Trajan. Ignatius calls the Roman congregation “preeminent in love” and asks that they not try to save him from death. Rather, the bishop of Antioch desired to die for the Lord, to receive the
Ignatius of Antioch remains one of the most important characters of early Christianity, as the letters he wrote on the road to his martyrdom in Rome contain important insights into the faith and practice of the early Church. Ignatius, the second or third bishop of Antioch in Syria, wrote seven letters to churches in Asia Minor (modern day Turkey) before being martyred under the Emperor Trajan sometime between 107 and 117 AD. In his Epistle
Ignatius, the second or third bishop of Antioch in Syria, wrote seven letters on the road to Rome before being martyred under the Emperor Trajan in the early second century. In his Epistle to the Magnesians, Ignatius especially emphasizes obedience to the bishop. He also stand opposed to the “fables” of Judaism, calling it “outlandish to proclaim Jesus Christ and practice Judaism.” For Ignatius, Christianity was devoid of the complexities of Gnostic logic or Jewish-Christian