The Arian Controversy and the Council of Nicea: The Council of Nicea, Part 5

Many young believers have no concept of the hundreds of years of history that Christianity had gone through since the time of Jesus Christ over 2,000 years ago. The purpose of this broadcast is to dispel this notion by sharing with listeners the history of Christianity from the ministry of Jesus Christ all the way up until the present day in an easy-to-understand format. You don’t have to worry: this is not a lecture. This is a look at the basic facts and figures of Christian history that every believer and every person needs to be aware of.

Our History of Christianity Scripture passage today is Colossians 1:27-28 which reads: “To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory: Whom we preach, warning every man, and teaching every man in all wisdom; that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus.”

Our History of Christianity quote today is from Ignatius of Antioch. He said: “It is not that I want merely to be called a Christian, but actually to be one. Yes, if I prove to be one, then I can have the name.”

Today, in the History of Christianity, we are looking at “The Arian Controversy and the Council of Nicea – The Council of Nicea” – Part 5 from Dr. Justo L. Gonzalez’s fine book, The Story of Christianity (Volume 1).

When one reads the formula as approved by the bishops at Nicea, it is clear that their main concern was to reject any notion that the Son or Word – Logos – was a creature, or a being less divine than the Father. This may be seen first of all in affirmations such as: “God of God, light of light, true God of true God.” It is also the reason why the creed declares that the Son is “begotten, not made.” Note that the Creed began by declaring that the Father is “Maker of all things visible and invisible.” Thus, in declaring that the Son is “begotten, not made,” he is being excluded from those things “visible and invisible” made by the Father. Furthermore, in the last paragraph, those are condemned who declare that the Son “came from that which is not” – that is, out of nothing, like the rest of creation. Also, in the text of the creed itself, we are told that the Son was begotten “from the substance of the Father.”