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Pagan Origin of Partialist Doctrines by Pitrat

Prevented Arianism from spreading


3d.

We prove that it was only long after the council of Nice, that its decision in favor of the doctrine of the supreme divinity of Jesus Christ, prevailed among the churches which depended on the Emperor of Constantinople, and on the Bishop of Rome.

Bergier, despite his partiality in favor of the Church of Rome, is obliged to make the following avowal:

"The anathema pronounced against Arianism did not destroy it; _the larger portion of those_ (bishops) _who had signed the decision of the council, only for fear of being exiled, remained attached to the party of Arius_. Constantine himself, influenced by an Arian priest, recommended to him by his sister Constantia, at her death bed, and who had gained his confidence, consented to the repeal of Arius from his exile, in 328. This heretic reunited to his partisans, and commenced spreading his errors with even more earnestness than before. But St. Athanase, who had succeeded to Alexander in the episcopal see of Alexandria, constantly refused to commune with him, and by this firmness displeased Constantine I.

"Since that time the Arians became a redoubtable party. They held several councils where they obtained the majority.... Arius died in a tragic manner, in the year 337. After the death of Constantine I., in 337, the party of the Arians was alternatively the stronger, in ratio of the less or greater protection extended to them or

to the Orthodox by the Emperors. Under Constance, who favored them, they filled the Orient with seditions and troubles; but Constantine Junior and Constant, who reigned in Occident, prevented Arianism from spreading. In 351, Constance, who had become the master of the whole empire by the death of his two brothers, protected Arianism more openly than before. Several councils were held in Italy, in which the Arians had the majority; and others, in which the Catholics had the superiority.... Julian, who was emperor in 362, sided neither with one party nor with the other. Valens, emperor of the Orient, in 364, favored and embraced Arianism; whereas Valentinian, his brother, did all in his power to extirpate it from the Occident.

"Gratian, and afterwards Theodose, proscribed Arianism from the whole empire.... In the beginning of the fifth century, the Goths, the Burgundians, and the Vandals, spread it in Gaul and in Africa. The Visigoths introduced it in Spain, where it subsisted as long as the kings of that country were Arians themselves, until the year 660.

"Arianism was to be revived in the sixteenth century. It is probable that Arianism would have invaded the whole Orient if the Arians had been united."

Therefore, it was only long after the Council of Nice, that its decision, in favor of the doctrine of the supreme divinity of Jesus Christ, prevailed among the churches which depended on the Emperor of Constantinople, and on the Bishop of Rome.

4th. We will also present a succinct view of the large number of Christians, who, without the pale of the communion of Rome, preserved the former belief that Jesus Christ was not God.

We have proved, in the course of this chapter, that the following Christian sects, or denominations, did not believe the doctrine of the divinity of Jesus Christ: the Corinthians, the Carpocratians, the Ebionites, the Basilidians, the Marcionites, the Valentinians, the Ptolemaites, the Heracleonites, the Colarbasians, the Barules, the Bardesanists, the Marcosians, the Theodotians, the Artemonians, the Docetes, the Tatianists, the Apellites, the Ophites, the Cainites, the Hermogenians, the Hermians, the Sethians, the Severians, the Encratites, the Valesians, the Hieracites, the Samosatians, and the Manicheans. But nearly all these Christian sects of the first three centuries outlived the Council of Nice, and preserved through centuries the doctrine that Jesus Christ was not God himself: this is the unanimous testimony of historians.


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