You must write an original paper of your own composition on the topic of â€œNicene Christology.â€ Your paper must be 1200 to 1800 words long, double-spaced, in a standard 12-point font). In your paper, you must examine the major Christological controversies that were discussed in the Ecumenical Councils of the fourth and fifth centuries (the Councils of Nicaea, Constantinople, Ephesus, and Chalcedon). Structure your paper in the following manner:
First, drawing from your course texts, briefly discuss the controversies over the deity and humanity of Jesus. What were the positions of the different parties (concentrate on their views about Christ)? Why did they hold these views?
Second, describe the outcome of these councils, including the â€œChalcedonian Definition.â€ What conclusions were reached at Nicaea and the subsequent councils? Why did the church fathers reach these conclusions? What difference did these specific conclusions make in the life of the church?
Application and Analysis
Third, apply what you have learned to your contemporary Christian fellowship/church experience. Possible questions for your reflection in this third section would be 1) What is the Christology (the understanding of who Christ is) of your contemporary Christian fellowship/church?; 2) How does this Christology compare or contrast with Nicene orthodoxy?; 3) How does your Christian fellowshipâ€™s/churchâ€™s adherence or departure from Nicene orthodoxy affect the message of salvation (and it does!)?; and 4) Why should (or shouldnâ€™t) the thinking of contemporary Christians be/ become aligned with the Nicene Creed?
See the course schedule for the exact due date for this assignment.
Your papers should draw primarily (but not exclusively) from the three course textbooks (Bingham, Kerr, and Lane). Integration of quality, additional outside sources into papers is required. Sources other than course textbooks should be scholarly books or articles. E-books or full-text articles secured through the Regent University Library databases are ideal (e.g. the ATLA Religion Database, which contains numerous relevant journals and pertinent scholarly articles, or the Religion and Divinity database; see http://www.regent.edu/lib/). Internet websites should not be used for these written assignments.
Students are expected to interact with and properly cite (at a minimum) two additional scholarly sources, which do notinclude any of the required course textbooks.
Larger articles (3-5 pages at minimum) from scholarly Biblical or theological dictionaries may be used as sources (e.g. The Dictionary of Biblical Interpretation, Brownâ€™s New International Dictionary of New Testament Theology, and Lacosteâ€™s Encyclopedia of Christian Theology).
Shorter articles from one-volume Bible Dictionaries, Handbooks, or theological dictionaries do not make good, acceptable sources. Popular Internet sources (e.g., Wikipedia, Google books and previews) are not allowed and English dictionaries, concordances, and study Bibles are not considered outside sources. In all forms, books, collections of essays, or journal articles are preferred.
All sources (utilized for ideas, as well as for direct quotes) must be cited properly; plagiarism is considered an academic offense, which carries serious academic consequences. (See various Regent University resources for explanation and clarification regarding plagiarism and how best to avoid it.) Be sure to cite the information you derive from the sources according to the proper style manual.
Carefully check grammar, spelling, and other writing mechanics. Submit the Paper as a Word document in accordance with syllabus instructions.
You are also encouraged to access the services of the Writing Center.