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Arminian Theology


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#1 Ashot

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Posted 16 March 2008 - 02:13 AM

Definition:
Armenian Theology is a Protestant development which occurred in reaction to the more extreme Calvinism which held sway at the beginning of the 17th century. Arminian Theology, named after James Arminius (1560-1609), emphasizes human freedom of choices, whereas traditional Calvinism emphasizes the absolute sovereignty of God - even to the point that humans are predestined either to heaven or to hell, regardless of what they might want to do.

The distinction runs deeper than that, however. According to traditional Calvinism, whatever God wills is automatically just, merely because he wills it - that is why it is just that some are predestined to heaven and some to hell. Arminius, on the other hand, argued that God's will is constrained by justice, and as a result can only will that which is independently right or good. Thus, God does not condemn someone to hell or heaven, but instead merely sees how they make free choices which in turn causes them to go to heaven or hell.

Arminius' ideas spread widely and became a part of the doctrines of a number of Protestant sects, like the Methodists. It is largely from this viewpoint that tolerance was able to gain a foothold in Protestantism because tolerance requires the allowance that people have some say in their own destiny. Arminian, rather than Calvinist, ideas gained much wider support in the United States due to the fact that a belief in self-determination and free will have always been critical premises in American culture and politics.

During the early 19th century, Arminiam Christianity was slowly transformed into a new Christian denomination which became known as Unitarianism. According to Unitarianism, there does exist a God, but the role of Jesus Christ is more that of a great moral teacher rather than a literal Son of God.


#2 Vera

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Posted 13 April 2008 - 09:37 AM

QUOTE (Ashot @ Mar 16 2008, 03:13 AM)
During the early 19th century, Arminiam Christianity was slowly transformed into a new Christian denomination which became known as Unitarianism. According to Unitarianism, there does exist a God, but the role of Jesus Christ is more that of a great moral teacher rather than a literal Son of God.


Is that what it is today too? If that is what Armenian Christianity is then I am more Christian than anyone I have ever met.

#3 Vanetsi

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Posted 13 April 2008 - 01:02 PM

The "Armenian" and "Arminian" demoninations have been confused with each other in the past. What's funny is that the Germanic name "Arminius" has Armenian roots; in 9 AD, Armenian German-hired mercenaries, led by someone known as "Arminius", defeated three Roman legions. This victory and Arminius became legendary in Germanic history. The name became widespread, with a number of forms (Armin, Arminius, Herrmann, and more).

And, as is tradition in Germanic literature, characters in sagas are either historical figures or based on historical figures. I.E. in "Atlatsvida" they group Attilla the Hun with many notable Scandinavians, most of which lived in different eras. So, interestingly, Seigfried in "The Ring of the Nibelungen" and the "Nibelungenleid" are based off of Arminius.

Quite an important character in the most prominent of Viking literary works...




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