Paul of Samosata

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Paul of Samosata

(səmŏs`ətə), fl. 260–72, Syrian Christian theologian, heretical patriarch of Antioch. He was a friend and high official of ZenobiaZenobia
, d. after 272, queen of Palmyra. She was of Arab stock and was the wife of Septimius Odenathus. He was murdered, probably through her contrivance, and she obtained rule of his lands in the name of her son.
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 of Palmyra. Paul enounced a dynamic monarchianismmonarchianism
[Gr.,=belief in the rule of one], the concept of God that maintains his sole authority even over Christ and the Holy Spirit. Its characteristic tenet, that God the Father and Jesus are one person, was developed in two forms in early Christianity.
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, denying the three Persons of the Trinity. He taught that the Logos came to dwell in Jesus at baptism, but that Jesus possessed no extraordinary nature above other men, the Logos being entirely an attribute of God. Paul was repeatedly challenged and finally excommunicated (269), but he continued to function as bishop under Zenobia's protection until the Romans took Palmyra (272). Arius may have been his pupil and his influence on Nestorius was considerable, but his connection with the PauliciansPaulicians
, Christian heretical sect. The sect developed in Armenia from obscure origins and is first mentioned in the middle of the 6th cent., where it is associated with Nestorianism.
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 is disputed. See adoptionismadoptionism,
Christian heresy taught in Spain after 782 by Elipandus, archbishop of Toledo, and Felix, bishop of Urgel (Seo de Urgel). They held that Jesus at the time of his birth was purely human and only became the divine Son of God by adoption when he was baptized.
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.