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When Jesus Became God The Struggle to Define Christianity During the Last Days of Rome

ISBN-10: 0156013150
ISBN-13: 9780156013154
Edition: 1999
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Description: The story of Jesus is well known, as is the story of Christian persecutions during the Roman Empire. The history of fervent debate, civil strife, and bloody riots within the Christian community as it was coming into being, however, is a side of  More...

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Book details

List price: $15.95
Copyright year: 1999
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company
Publication date: 8/10/2000
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 288
Size: 5.25" wide x 7.75" long x 0.75" tall
Weight: 0.902
Language: English

The story of Jesus is well known, as is the story of Christian persecutions during the Roman Empire. The history of fervent debate, civil strife, and bloody riots within the Christian community as it was coming into being, however, is a side of ancient history rarely described. Richard E. Rubenstein takes the reader to the streets of the Roman Empire during the fourth century, when a fateful debate over the divinity of Jesus Christ is being fought. Ruled by a Christian emperor, followers of Jesus no longer fear for the survival of their monotheistic faith but break into two camps regarding the direction of their worship. Is Jesus the son of God and therefore not the same as God? Or is Jesus precisely God on earth and therefore equal to Him? The vicious debate is led by two charismatic priests. Arius, an Alexandrian priest and poet, preaches that Jesus, though holy, is less than God. Athanasius, a brilliant and violent bishop, sees any diminution of Jesus' godhead as the work of the devil. Between them stands Alexander, the powerful Bishop of Alexandria, who must find a resolution that will keep the empire united and the Christian faith alive. With thorough historical, religious, and social research, Rubenstein vividly recreates one of the most critical moments in the history of religion.

RICHARD E. RUBENSTEIN is professor of conflict resolution and public affairs at George Mason University and an expert on religious conflict. A graduate of Harvard University and Harvard Law School, he was a Rhodes Scholar and studied at Oxford University. He lives in Fairfax, Virginia.

Preface
Acknowledgements
An Incident in Alexandria
The Silence of Apollo
A Quarrel in God's House
The Great and Holy Council
Sins of the Body, Passions of the Mind
The Broken Chalice
Death in Constantinople
East against West
The Arian Empire
Old Gods and New
When Jesus Became God
Principal Characters
Select Bibliography of Works in English
Notes
Index

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