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Timeline 305 - 476

The end of the Diocletian persecution
b. Apollinaris, the heretic who said that Jesus had a human body but not a human mind; He had the divine mind. Gregory of Nazianzus' reply: "What has not been assumed cannot be restored"
b. Ulfilas
Constantine defeats Maxentius at the battle of Milvian Bridge and becomes Emperor of the West. Constantine had had a vision, and used the letters chi and rho (the first two letters in "Christ") as his symbol during the battle
Caecilian elected bishop of Carthage. He was lax toward the Traditores, who had saved themselves by handing over scriptures during the Diocletian persecution. And he seemed unenthusiastic about the martyrs. A group in Carthage rejected Caecilian's election on the grounds that he was ordained by a traditore. They elected a rival bishop named Majorinus
Edict of Milan gives Christians equal rights. It is issued by Constantine in the West and Licinius in the East, but Licinius soon withdraws his committment to it
By this date, there is a significant number of Christians in Britain
Majorinus dies, Donatus is his successor. This party becomes known as the Donatist party
The Donatists appeal to Constantine, but he rules against them. Then he outlaws them and banishes them in an effort to unite the church
Constantine defeats Licinius and becomes Emperor of both East and West. Constantine favored Christianity, which effects the face of the church even today
Council of Nicea condemns Arianism. Arius, in Alexandria, taught that Christ was the first created being, that there was a time when He was not. The council declared that Jesus was begotten, not made, and that He is Homoousios, of the same substance as the Father
Athanasius becomes bishop of Alexandria
Constantine revokes the sentence against Arius
b. Basil the Great of Cappadocia, the monk who created the basic Rule for the Eastern Orthodox monks that is still in use today. Basil taught communal monasticism that serves the poor, sick, and needy. One immediate effect of the disappearance of persecution is the rise of monasticism to replace the old martyr witness
b. Martin of Tours, a great monk who is famous for his compassion for the poor
d. Constantine
b. Ambrose the Churchman, who fought Arianism and the revival of paganism, and promoted the power of the Church.
d. Eusebius of Caesarea
Ulfilas converted to Arian Christianity. He takes it to the Germanic tribes, gives them an alphabet, and translates the Bible into their language. Most of the Germanic tribes became Arian Christians
b. John Chrysostom, "Golden Mouthed." He was a bold and reforming preacher, who used the Historical-grammatical method of exegesis. This was unusual, because exegetes had been looking at the allegorical interpretation ever since Clement of Alexandria and Origen
d. Pachomius
b. Jerome, the great Bible scholar and translator, author of the Vulgate
Emperor Constantius releases his pro-Arian campaign and drives Athanasius from Alexandria
d. Anthony, at a very old age
361 - 363
Reign of Julian the Apostate, who converted from Christianity to paganism and restored paganism in Rome
Julian the Apostate removes the restrictions against the Donatists
A letter of Athanasius names the 66 books of the canon
b. Pelagius
d. Athanasius
d. Basil the Great of Cappadocia
379 - 395
The reign of Theodosius, who establishes Christianity as the official religion of the Roman Empire
Council of Constantinople. The Nicene position becomes dominant again, and the legal religion of the Empire. Jesus Christ is truly human, contrary to Apollinarianism, which held that Jesus had a human body but a divine mind. The Great
Cappadocians are the inspiration behind the defeat of Arianism at this council. They are St. Basil the Great, St. Gregory of Nazianzus, and St. Gregory of Nyssa
A council in Rome affirms the authority of the New Testament canon. It is important to remember that the content of the canon was not a conciliar decision. The church recognized, or discovered, the canon. The church did not determine the canon
d. Ulfilas
Augustine was converted in a garden in Milan after hearing a child saying "Take up and read!" He took up Romans 13: 13-14.
Augustine baptized by Ambrose
c. 389
b. St. Patrick. He was a British Romanized Christian who established Christianity in Ireland
d. Apollinaris
b. Leo the Great, an outstanding pope. He was influential in Chalcedon. He also argued for papal supremacy and showed political leadership in his negotiations with Attila the Hun
Augustine ordained a priest in Hippo, North Africa
The Council of Hippo recognizes the canon. To be recognized as canonical, a book had to be Apostolic, fit in with the other scriptures, and have been of fruitful use throughout the church up to that time
Augustine becomes bishop of Hippo
d. Martin of Tours
The Council of Carthage agrees with the Council of Hippo
397 - 401
Augustine writes Confessions
John Chrysostom becomes bishop of Constantinople
d. Nestorius, the heretic who said that Mary was the bearer of Christ (christokos), but not the bearer of God (theotokos). He could not call a three month old Jesus God. So he said that Jesus Christ was two persons, whose only union was a moral one
d. Chrysostom
The Fall of Rome to Alaric and the Visigoths
411 - 430
Augustine's Anti-Pelagian writings. Pelagius rejected the idea that we all fell in Adam (Federal Headship), original sin, and the sin nature. We could earn our salvation by works, so grace is not necessary.
Augustine insisted that we all sinned in Adam, and spiritual death, guilt, and our diseased nature is the result. God's grace is necessary not only to be able to choose to obey God's commands, but to be able to choose to turn to God initially for salvation.
413 - 426
Augustine writes The City of God. Some people blamed the fall of Rome on the Christians, saying it happened because Rome abandoned paganism. This is Augustine's responce, along with many diversions.
The Council of Carthage anathematized the teachings of Pelagius.
d. Jerome
d. Pelagius
Arian Vandals cross into Africa. After this, Western Emperors became puppets of Germanic generals
d. Augustine
Council of Ephesus. Jesus Christ is one person, contrary to Nestorianism, which held that Christ was two persons, one divine and one human
Leo writes an epistle to Flavian, The Tome of Leo, to encourage him. It encapsulates the Christology of the church, drawing from Augustine and Tertullian
The Latrocinium (Robber's) Council. Dioscorus, Patriarch of Alexandria, presided. This Council declared Eutychianism, which held that Christ had only one nature, to be orthodox. According to this heresy, His humanity was not like ours. This would make redemption impossible. The council deposed Flavian, the orthodox Patriarch of Constantinople
Council of Chalcedon. Eutychianism is condemned, Dioscorus is deposed, The Tome of Leo is confirmed. Jesus Christ is "two natures, the Divine of the same substance as the Father (against Arianism), the human of the same substance as us (against Eutychianism), which are united unconfusedly, unchangeably, indivisibly, inseparably(against Nestorianism)." The church remains divided over these issues for the next 200 years
c. 461
d. St. Patrick
d. Leo the Great
The last Emperor, Romulus Augustulus, is deposed by Odoacer, a German general