- Pathfinder

Reply To: Are there elements of ancient and/or modern Near Eastern Christianity that are present in your own church/faith life? If so, what are they? If not, would you be open to implementing any?

Daniel Saba

Learning about the Christological controversy that resulted in the split between what was later called the “Church of the East,” and the rest of the Church has been interesting. I had ancestors that were part of the Church of the East, even though I myself was raised in a Reformed Protestant tradition. What is so appealing to me about the Christological beliefs adhered to by the so-called “Nestorians,” (which I regard as a misnomer) is something I always thought to be at the center of the stories we are told about Jesus.

The humanity of “God the Son,” obviously not something uniquely believed about him by the Church of the East, is a powerful idea. Given that recent ecumenical dialogues between the Church of the East and other Churches, it appears that perhaps the way in which this humanity was emphasized by what later was referred to as “extreme Antiochian” Christological terminology is not quite the heresy it was once believed to be.

Not being a theologian myself, it’s not as if I have incorporated anything that rises to any sophistication into my own faith life. That said, exploring this theological debate and how this debate has evolved over the centuries has resulted in my read of the Gospel being totally revolutionized.