When discussing theology, I've come to realize that not only is personal study of doctrine a necessary component to faith, but it is something that shouldn't be kept to oneself. I want to share my journey, both past and ongoing, into the realm of theology. Through this, I hope that you will gain insight into the Christian faith as a whole. Before reading anything else, I suggest you read the introduction and definitions (found in the pages tabs above) so you may better understand where I am coming from in everything I write. Because many of my posts are on heresies, there is also a page above with a family tree of heresies and links to all the posts I have so far on the topic.

18 March, 2013

Heresy of the Week: Docetism

This week's heresy takes parts from Adoptionism and Gnosticism.  I suppose they get props for creativity.

Docetism is a heresy of the Monophysitism family that purports Jesus only seemed to be human, but that His human body was only a phantasm—that His body was either absent or illusory. Docetists deny Jesus’ humanity, and were condemned as heretical at the 451 Council of Chalcedon. There are essentially two kinds of Docetists: one believes that Christ was so divine, He could not have had a body since God lacks a material body, and therefore He cannot have physically suffered; the other says that Jesus was a man, but Christ a separate entity who entered Jesus at the Baptism and left Him upon His death on the cross (quasi-Adoptionism). The dualistic, and therefore Gnosticism, side of Docetism was that matter is evil and God would not stoop to be clothed in something evil (more in line with the first kind of Docetism), and that God, being perfect and infinite, could not suffer and therefore, even if He had a human body, He could not have been made to suffer and die for our sins (more in line with the second kind of Docetism).

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