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Nicaea and its Legacy

An Approach to Fourth-Century Trinitarian Theology

Lewis Ayres

20 April 2006

ISBN: 9780198755050

496 pages

In Stock

Price: £27.99



Lewis Ayres offers a new account of the most important century in the development of Christian belief after Christ. He shows how the doctrine of the Trinity was developed, and in particular argues that a conception of God's mysteriousness and spiritual progress towards understanding is central to that doctrine.

  • Offers a new account of the relevance of Nicene trinitarianism for modern theology
  • Emphasizes the spiritual and contemplative life that accompanies thinking about the Trinity

About the Author(s)

Lewis Ayres, Assistant Professor of Historical Theology, Candler School of Theology and the Graduate Division of Religion, Emory University

Table of Contents

    I. Towards a Controversy
    1:Points of Departure
    2:Theological Trajectories in the Early Fourth Century I
    3:Theological Trajectories in the Early Fourth Century II
    4:Confusion and Controversy: AD 325-340
    5:The Creation of `Arianism': AD 340-350
    II. The Emergence of Pro-Nicene Theology
    6:Shaping the Alternatives: AD 350-360
    7:The Beginnings of Rapprochement
    8:Basil of Caesarea and the Development of Pro-Nicene Theology
    9:The East from Valens to Theodosius
    10:Victory and the Struggle for Definition
    III. Understanding Pro-Nicene Theology
    11:On the Contours of Mystery
    12:`The First and Brightest Light'
    13:`Walk Towards Him Shining'
    14:`On Not Three Gods': Gregory of Nyssa's Trinitarian Theology
    15:The Grammar of Augustine's Trinitarian Theology
    16:In Spite of Hegel, Fire and Sword
    Epilogue: On Teaching the Fourth Century


"The author's extensive erudition and knowledge of primary and secondary sources...make his achievement almost as remarkable as his initial ambition... This approach to pro-Nicene theology offers some illuminating insights... I maintain my stance on the opposite bank, but am glad to be able to salute a book of such good scholarship and stimulus from the other bank." - Maurice Wiles, The Journal of Theological Studies