Novatian


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Novatian

(nōvā`shən), fl. 250, Roman priest, antipope (from 251), and theologian. He opposed the election of St. Cornelius as pope and set himself up instead. He gained followers throughout the empire because of his espousal of the idea that those fallen from grace by compromising their Christianity during the Decian persecution (250) were barred from the church forever. At the instigation of St. Cyprian of Carthage, who was himself quite strict on readmission to the church, virtually the whole church recognized Cornelius and repudiated Novatian and his followers, who maintained their own hierarchy for two or three centuries. After 325 the sect was merged with that of DonatismDonatism
, schismatic movement among Christians of N Africa (fl. 4th cent.), led by Donatus, bishop of Casae Nigrae (fl. 313), and the theologian Donatus the Great or Donatus Magnus (d. 355).
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. Novatian's chief work, On the Trinity, which was written as a refutation of the Gnostics, the Theodotians, and the Sabellians, was later regarded as an orthodox expression of ante-Nicene doctrine, except for the last chapter, which anticipated Arianism.
References in periodicals archive ?
During the interregnum, the Roman church was governed by a council of elders, as it had been throughout the first century of its existence, with the presbyter Novatian acting as its leader and spokesman.
This initial agreement between Novatian and Tertullian regarding divine passibility, and their subsequent disagreement regarding the metaphysical basis underlying this point, is enlightening in relation to Milton's statement in De Doctrina that "God in his most simple nature is a SPIRIT " (CPW 6:140).
It is interesting, for instance, to see how the schism of the Church at Antioch under Meletius and Paulinus was solved or how the First Council of Nicea invited the Novatians to be reunited to their local catholic Church.
The Novatians, who disagreed with Cyprian, precipitated a schism over this issue, introducing the challenge of how to receive Christians who were baptized by heretical or schismatic bishops.
Novatian himself was martyred during the next persecution, by Valerian (257-258).
Though Novatians are characterized as `rigorists', one would guess from what Pacian says, that Catholics were actually tougher on crime than the sectarians.
Up to 428, he preached and wrote against Novatian heretics, Jews, and pagans.
This is the doctrine Novatian opposed, according to Simonetti; the subtle development into God's being manifested first as Father, then as Son, would have been carried out later in the East.
Cyprian had written to Cornelius of Rome in the aftermath of the 251 synod primarily because of the controversy that surrounded the delay of the African bishops in recognizing Cornelius as having been validly elected bishop, a situation that was due to the election of Novatian as a rival bishop (Epistulae 44, 45, 48).
He has shown the distinctive differences between Marcellus and his supposed ancestors in the tradition (Irenaeus, Tertullian, Novatian, etc.
In the fourth century, Pope Damasus and the poet Prudentius make Hippolytus into a presbyter who was reconciled in the course of the mid-third century Novatian schism because they did not have the conceptual tools to understand a pre-Cyprianic church order, in other words a church that consisted of a confederation of house churches instead of one with a single bishop at the head of multiple house churches.
82) An exception to this rule is Novatian, who not only knows the book titles Vetus and Novum Testamentum, but also uses the terms fairly regularly in this sense.