The QuasiChristian

Critical Thinking and Spiritual Reasoning

Church Fathers: Spirit Filled Anti-Semites, Misogynists, and Racists


Over the next several weeks I’ll be posting disturbing excerpts from the works of those known as Church Fathers. I wonder why this isn’t a topic of discussion in seminary? These individuals are revered by many as “godly” men. Yeah right.

Church Fathers, a miniature from Svyatoslav's ...

If you’re not familiar with the term Church Fathers, here’s a definition:

Those persons whose views the Church considered to be foundational for the development of early Christian orthodoxy and spirituality. The time of the Fathers is classically divided into three periods: the foundational years (until the Council of Nicaea [325]); the formational period (until the Council of Chalcedon [451]); and the decline of the patristic era (in the Latin Church, until the death of Gregory the Great [604] or perhaps Isidore of Seville [636]; in the Greek Church, until the death of John of Damascus [749]). Viewed as founders of the mainline ecclesiastical tradition, the category of Fathers includes apostles, bishops, martyrs, apologists, heresiologists, theologians, and historians.

The authority of the Fathers is based upon their support of the tradition. The teaching of any specific Father which diverges from the tradition bears no particular weight unless approved by a general council. The Church accepts the unanimous agreement of the Fathers with respect to scriptural exegesis as faith without error. The balance of their combined teachings in theology and doctrine, especially when the Fathers are taken in relation to one another, is given specific consideration in matters of modern ecclesiasical debate.

Jefford, C. N. (2000). Church Fathers. In D. N. Freedman (Ed.), Eerdmans dictionary of the Bible (D. N. Freedman, Ed.) (255). Grand Rapids, MI: W.B. Eerdmans.

January 24, 2012 Posted by | Church History, Theology | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment