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The importance of the theologian Tertullian - Essay Example

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[Instructor Name] Critically Assess the Importance of the Theologian Tertullian Introduction In the period of documenting Christian scriptures and teachings, Tertullian works and theologies have a visible impact. He entered into Christianity before 197 and rendered his services for illustrating and defending the orthodox principles of the Christian faith…
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The importance of the theologian Tertullian
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The importance of the theologian Tertullian

Tertullian considered that Heretics were altering the religious teachings and scriptures to fulfill their personal desires, which is leading people towards corruption and confusion about religion and its core believes. He has mentioned it in his treatise of De Praescriptione Haereticorum, in which he defends the Rule of Faith. He argues that religion is not a source to attain material goals and comfort, but a path towards finding oneself and the reason of their existence. Hence, it cannot be guided by an individual who is seeking religion in terms of materialism (Barnes). The prevailing concept of the church being a place only assigned, or prayers was also modified by Tertullian, and describes in his Apology that it is not just a place of worship but attaining wisdom and social integration. In his later works gathered in De Carne Christi, he enlightened the concept of ‘substance’ and ‘person’, explaining how a being can be material and spiritual at the same time. Explaining this notion he addresses the authorities of God, Spirit of God and the Son of God. He exemplifies that as one person can have right over different substances, similarly Jesus Christ has the right over both humanity and divinity, and both exist in equality (Roberts). This paper will deal with Tertullian ideology of Penitential discipline, the church doctrine and his contributions for ethical and moral correction of the people. The paper also aims to provide authentic information about his contribution in forming the Latin vocabulary developing the terminologies of Trinitarian theology and Christology. 1. Trinitarian Theology Trinity defines the core concept of substance and person, illuminating that that there are three divine persons, not one, and one substance not three. The three persons are The God, The Spirit of God and Jesus Christ, who is the Son of God. All the three exist in eternity and entirety and are distinct to other, yet possess the same substance. Therefore, all can be considered as God or divine in autonomy (Morrison). Tertullian explains this concept as discussed by Osborn (1997). that the kingdom of God is not suppressed but supported by the son of God. He describes that God’s monarchy is balanced by the Son of God and not in any ways threatened or distributed (Osborn). He explains that there is an economy of divinity, which is possible to maintain only if the divinity is practiced in both natural and supernatural forms. God is one who has created the entire universe and all creations; the Son of God is the protector and presenter of God, while the Spirit of God is the procedure of creation and protecting. Therefore, Tertullian states that, for the existence of God’s monarchy, the co-existence of the Son of God and the Spirit of god is equally important, and they are not dependent but related to each other (Morrison). In explaining the theology of Trinity, Tertullian in his doctrines, also throws light to the Oneness and Corporeity of God. He rejects the concept of Marcion of dual God that is one of the Old Testament and one of the New Testament. In his argument to this, he lays the foundation of God as the supreme Authority. If He has someone equal ... Read More
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