Unitarianism

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Unitarianism (from Latin unitas "unity, oneness", from unus "one") is a Christian theological movement named for its belief that the God in Christianity is one person, as opposed to the Trinity (tri- from Latin tres "three") which in many other branches of Christianity defines God as three persons in one being: the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. [1] Unitarian Christians, therefore, believe that Jesus was inspired by God in his moral teachings, and he is a savior, [2] [3] but he was not a deity or God incarnate. As is typical of dissenters, Unitarianism does not constitute one single Christian denomination, but rather refers to a collection of both extant and extinct Christian groups, whether historically related to each other or not, which share a common theological concept of the oneness nature of God.

Christian theology is the theology of Christian belief and practice. Such study concentrates primarily upon the texts of the Old Testament and of the New Testament, as well as on Christian tradition. Christian theologians use biblical exegesis, rational analysis and argument. Theologians may undertake the study of Christian theology for a variety of reasons, such as in order to:

Various sociological classifications of religious movements have been proposed by scholars. In the sociology of religion, the most widely used classification is the church-sect typology. The typology states that churches, ecclesia, denominations and sects form a continuum with decreasing influence on society. Sects are break-away groups from more mainstream religions and tend to be in tension with society.

God in Christianity is the eternal being who created and preserves all things. Christians believe God to be both transcendent and immanent. Christian teachings of the immanence and involvement of God and his love for humanity exclude the belief that God is of the same substance as the created universe but accept that God's divine nature was hypostatically united to human nature in the person of Jesus Christ, in an event known as the Incarnation.

Contents

While the uncompromising theological monotheism at the heart of Christian Unitarianism distinguishes it from the major Christian denominations which subscribe to Trinitarian theology, Christian Unitarianism is closer to the monotheistic understandings of God in Judaism, as well as the concept of the oneness of God in Islam.

Monotheism is the belief in one god. A narrower definition of monotheism is the belief in the existence of only one god that created the world, is all-powerful and intervenes in the world.

God in Judaism The concept of God in the Jewish faith

In Judaism, God has been conceived in a variety of ways. Traditionally, Judaism holds that YHWH, the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob and the national god of the Israelites, delivered the Israelites from slavery in Egypt, and gave them the Law of Moses at biblical Mount Sinai as described in the Torah. According to the rationalist stream of Judaism articulated by Maimonides, which later came to dominate much of official traditional Jewish thought, God is understood as the absolute one, indivisible, and incomparable being who is the ultimate cause of all existence. Traditional interpretations of Judaism generally emphasize that God is personal yet also transcendent, while some modern interpretations of Judaism emphasize that God is a force or ideal.

Tawhid is the indivisible oneness concept of monotheism in Islam. Tawhid is the religion's central and single-most important concept, upon which a Muslim's entire faith rests. It unequivocally holds that God is One and Single ; therefore, the Islamic belief in God is considered Unitarian.

Unitarianism is also known for the rejection of several other Western Christian doctrines, [4] including the doctrines of original sin, predestination, [5] [6] and the infallibility of the Bible. [7] Unitarians in previous centuries accepted the doctrine of punishment in an eternal hell, but few do today. [8]

Western Christianity is a religious category composed of the Latin Church and Protestantism, together with their offshoots such as Independent Catholicism and Restorationism. The large majority of the world's 2.4 billion Christians are Western Christians. The original and still major part, the Latin Church, developed under the bishop of Rome in the former Western Roman Empire in Antiquity. Out of the Latin Church emerged a wide variety of independent Protestant denominations, including Lutheranism and Anglicanism, starting from the Protestant Reformation in the 16th century, as did Independent Catholicism in the 19th century. Thus, the term "Western Christianity" does not describe a single communion or religious denomination, but is applied to distinguish all these denominations collectively from Eastern Christianity.

Original sin Christian belief in the state of sin in which humanity has existed since the fall of man

Original sin, also called ancestral sin, is a Christian belief in the state of sin in which humanity has existed since the fall of man, stemming from Adam and Eve's rebellion in Eden, namely the sin of disobedience in consuming the forbidden fruit from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. This condition has been characterized in many ways, ranging from something as insignificant as a slight deficiency, or a tendency toward sin yet without collective guilt, referred to as a "sin nature", to something as drastic as total depravity or automatic guilt of all humans through collective guilt.

Biblical infallibility Doctrine that what the Bible says regarding matters of faith and Christian practice is wholly useful and true

Biblical infallibility is the belief that what the Bible says regarding matters of faith and Christian practice is wholly useful and true. It is the "belief that the Bible is completely trustworthy as a guide to salvation and the life of faith and will not fail to accomplish its purpose. Some equate "inerrancy" and "infallibility"; others do not."

Unitarianism might be considered a part of Protestantism, depending on one's stance or viewpoint, and some exclude it from that term due to its Nontrinitarian nature. Despite common origins during the Protestant Reformation, some scholars call it a part of Nontrinitarianism, while others consider it both Protestant and Nontrinitarian, seeing no contradiction between those two terms. None of the three views are universally accepted.

Protestantism Division within Christianity, originating with the 16th century Reformation, a movement against what its followers perceived to be errors in the Roman Catholic Church

Protestantism is the second largest form of Christianity with collectively between 800 million and more than 900 million adherents worldwide or nearly 40% of all Christians. It originated with the 16th century Reformation, a movement against what its followers perceived to be errors in the Roman Catholic Church. Protestants reject the Roman Catholic doctrine of papal supremacy and sacraments, but disagree among themselves regarding the real presence of Christ in the Eucharist. They emphasize the priesthood of all believers, justification by faith alone rather than also by good works, and the highest authority of the Bible alone in faith and morals. The "five solae" summarise basic theological differences in opposition to the Roman Catholic Church.

Nontrinitarianism A form of Christianity that rejects the mainstream Christian doctrine of the Trinity

Nontrinitarianism is a form of Christianity that rejects the mainstream Christian doctrine of the Trinity—the teaching that God is three distinct hypostases or persons who are coeternal, coequal, and indivisibly united in one being, or essence. Certain religious groups that emerged during the Protestant Reformation have historically been known as antitrinitarian, but are not considered Protestant in popular discourse due to their nontrinitarian nature.

The Unitarian movement is tied to the more radical critiques of the Reformation. First organized in Eastern Europe during the Reformation, Unitarian communities have developed in Britain, South Africa, India, Canada, the United States, Jamaica, Nigeria, and Japan.

Unitarians began almost simultaneously in the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth and in Transylvania in the mid-16th century. Among the adherents were a significant number of Italians who took refuge in Poland. [9] [10] In the 17th century, significant repression in Poland led many Unitarians to flee or be killed for their faith, notably Katarzyna Weiglowa. From the 16th to 18th centuries, Unitarians in Britain often faced significant political persecution, including John Biddle, Mary Wollstonecraft, and Theophilus Lindsey. In England, the first Unitarian Church was established in 1774 on Essex Street, London, where today's British Unitarian headquarters are still located. [11]

Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth Former European state

The Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth – formally, the Crown of the Kingdom of Poland and the Grand Duchy of Lithuania and, after 1791, the Commonwealth of Poland – was a dual state, a bi-confederation of Poland and Lithuania ruled by a common monarch, who was both King of Poland and Grand Duke of Lithuania. It was one of the largest and most populous countries of 16th- to 17th-century Europe. At its largest territorial extent, in the early 17th century, the Commonwealth covered almost 400,000 square miles (1,000,000 km2) and sustained a multi-ethnic population of 11 million.

Principality of Transylvania (1570–1711) semi-indipendent state between 1570 and 1711

The Principality of Transylvania was a semi-independent state, ruled primarily by Hungarian princes. Its territory, in addition to the traditional Transylvanian lands, also included eastern regions of Hungary, called Partium. The establishment of the principality was connected with Treaty of Speyer. However Stephen Báthory's status as king of Poland also helped to phase in the name Principality of Transylvania. It was usually under the suzerainty of the Ottoman Empire; however, the principality often had dual vassalage in the 16th and 17th centuries.

Katarzyna Weiglowa (Wajglowa), was a Roman Catholic woman from the Kingdom of Poland who converted to Judaism or to Judaizing nontrinitarianism. She was burned at the stake in Kraków under the charge of apostasy when she refused to call Jesus Christ the Son of God. She is regarded by Unitarians and Jews as a martyr.

In the United States, different schools of Unitarian theology first spread in New England and the mid-Atlantic states. The first official acceptance of the Unitarian faith on the part of a congregation in America was by King's Chapel in Boston, from where James Freeman began teaching Unitarian doctrine in 1784, and was appointed rector and revised the prayer book according to Unitarian doctrines in 1786. [12]

New England Region in the northeastern United States

New England is a region composed of six states in the northeastern United States: Maine, Vermont, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Connecticut. It is bordered by the state of New York to the west and by the Canadian provinces of New Brunswick to the northeast and Quebec to the north. The Atlantic Ocean is to the east and southeast, and Long Island Sound is to the south. Boston is New England's largest city, as well as the capital of Massachusetts. Greater Boston is the largest metropolitan area, with nearly a third of New England's population; this area includes Worcester, Massachusetts, Manchester, New Hampshire, and Providence, Rhode Island.

Kings Chapel United States national historic site

King's Chapel is an independent Christian unitarian congregation affiliated with the Unitarian Universalist Association that is "unitarian Christian in theology, Anglican in worship, and congregational in governance." It is housed in what was for a time after the Revolution called the "Stone Chapel", an 18th-century structure at the corner of Tremont Street and School Street in Boston, Massachusetts. The chapel building, completed in 1754, is one of the finest designs of the noted colonial architect Peter Harrison, and was designated a National Historic Landmark in 1960 for its architectural significance.

James Freeman (clergyman) American minister

James Freeman was the minister of King's Chapel in Boston for 43 years and the first clergyman in America to call himself a Unitarian. Unlike New England liberal Congregationalist ministers, who approached Unitarianism through Arianism, he was Socinian in theology and developed links with Unitarians in England.

In India, three different schools of Unitarian thought influenced varying movements, including the Brahmo Samaj, the Unitarian Church of the Khasi Hills [13] , and the Unitarian Christian Church of Chennai, in Madras, founded in 1795. [ citation needed ]

Unitarians place emphasis on the ultimate role of reason in interpreting sacred scriptures, and thus freedom of conscience and freedom of the pulpit are core values in the tradition. Reformation is an ongoing process, to be celebrated. Constant study and new experiences can lead to new insights for teachings and community practice. In varying contexts, Unitarians seek to affirm the use of reason in religion and freedom of conscience.

In J. Gordon Melton's Encyclopedia of American Religions, the Unitarian tradition is classified among "the 'liberal' family of churches". [14]

Terminology

A sign of the Unitarian Universalist Association in Rochester, Minnesota. Unitarianism in the English-speaking world largely evolved into a pluralistic liberal religious movement, while retaining its distinctiveness in continental Europe and elsewhere. UnitarianUniversalistChurchsignRochesterMN.JPG
A sign of the Unitarian Universalist Association in Rochester, Minnesota. Unitarianism in the English-speaking world largely evolved into a pluralistic liberal religious movement, while retaining its distinctiveness in continental Europe and elsewhere.

Unitarianism is a proper noun and follows the same English usage as other theologies that have developed within a religious movement (Calvinism, Anabaptism, Adventism, Wesleyanism, Lutheranism, etc.). [15] The term existed shortly before it became the name of a religious movement, thus occasionally it is used as a common noun that would describe any understanding of Jesus Christ that denies the Trinity or which believes that God is only one person. In that case, it would be a nontrinitarian belief system not necessarily associated with the Unitarian religious movement. [16] [17] [18] For example, the Unitarian movement has never accepted the Godhood of Jesus, and therefore does not include those nontrinitarian belief systems that do, such as Oneness Pentecostalism, United Pentecostal Church International and the True Jesus Church and the writings of Michael Servetus, all of which maintain that Jesus is God as a single person. Although these groups are unitarians in the common sense, they are not in the proper sense. To avoid confusion, this article is about Unitarianism as a religious movement (proper noun). For the generic form of unitarianism (the Christology), see Nontrinitarianism. Recently some religious groups have adopted the 19th-century term biblical unitarianism to distinguish their theology from Unitarianism. [19] These likewise have no direct relation to the Unitarian movement.

The term Unitarian is sometimes applied today to those who belong to a Unitarian church but do not hold a Unitarian theological belief. [20] In the past, the vast majority of members of Unitarian churches were Unitarians also in theology. Over time, however, some Unitarians and Unitarian Universalists moved away from the traditional Christian roots of Unitarianism. [21] [22] [23] For example, in the 1890s the American Unitarian Association began to allow non-Christian and non-theistic churches and individuals to be part of their fellowship. [24] As a result, people who held no Unitarian belief began to be called Unitarians because they were members of churches that belonged to the American Unitarian Association. After several decades, the non-theistic members outnumbered the theological Unitarians. [25] A similar, though proportionally much smaller, phenomenon has taken place in the Unitarian churches in the United Kingdom, Canada, and other countries, which remain more theistically based. Unitarian theology, therefore, is distinguishable from the belief system of modern Unitarian and Unitarian Universalist churches and fellowships. This article includes information about Unitarianism as a theology and about the development of theologically Unitarian churches. For a more specific discussion of Unitarianism as it evolved into a pluralistic liberal religious movement, see Unitarian Universalism (and its national groups the Unitarian Universalist Association in the United States, the Canadian Unitarian Council in Canada, the General Assembly of Unitarian and Free Christian Churches in the United Kingdom, and the International Council of Unitarians and Universalists).[ citation needed ]

History

Ferenc David holding his speech at the Diet of Torda, The Kingdom of Hungary in 1568 (today Turda, Romania) by Aladar Korosfoi-Kriesch (1896) Korosfoi-Kriesch Aladar Tordai orszaggyules.jpg
Ferenc Dávid holding his speech at the Diet of Torda, The Kingdom of Hungary in 1568 (today Turda, Romania) by Aladár Körösfői-Kriesch (1896)

Unitarianism, both as a theology and as a denominational family of churches, was defined and developed in Poland, Transylvania, England, Wales and the United States. Although common beliefs existed among Unitarians in each of these regions, they initially grew independently from each other. Only later did they influence one another and accumulate more similarities. [26]

The Ecclesia minor or Minor Reformed Church of Poland, better known today as the Polish Brethren, was born as the result of a controversy that started on January 22, 1556, when Piotr of Goniądz (Peter Gonesius), a Polish student, spoke out against the doctrine of the Trinity during the general synod of the Reformed (Calvinist) churches of Poland held in the village of Secemin. [27] After nine years of debate, in 1565, the anti-Trinitarians were excluded from the existing synod of the Polish Reformed Church (henceforth the Ecclesia maior) and they began to hold their own synods as the Ecclesia minor. Though frequently called "Arians" by those on the outside, the views of Fausto Sozzini (Faustus Socinus) became the standard in the church, and these doctrines were quite removed from Arianism. So important was Socinus to the formulation of their beliefs that those outside Poland usually referred to them as Socinians. The Polish Brethren were disbanded in 1658 by the Sejm (Polish Parliament). They were ordered to convert to Roman Catholicism or leave Poland. Most of them went to Transylvania or Holland, where they embraced the name "Unitarian." Between 1665 and 1668 a grandson of Socinus, Andrzej Wiszowaty Sr., published Bibliotheca Fratrum Polonorum quos Unitarios vocant (Library of the Polish Brethren who are called Unitarians 4 vols. 1665–69).[ citation needed ]

The Unitarian Church in Transylvania was first recognized by the Edict of Torda, issued by the Transylvanian Diet under Prince John II Sigismund Zápolya (January 1568), [28] and was first led by Ferenc Dávid (a former Calvinist bishop, who had begun preaching the new doctrine in 1566). The term "Unitarian" first appeared as unitaria religio in a document of the Diet of Lécfalva, Transylvania, on 25 October 1600, though it was not widely used in Transylvania until 1638, when the formal recepta Unitaria Religio was published.[ citation needed ]

The word Unitarian had been circulating in private letters in England, in reference to imported copies of such publications as the Library of the Polish Brethren who are called Unitarians (1665). Henry Hedworth was the first to use the word "Unitarian" in print in English (1673), and the word first appears in a title in Stephen Nye's A brief history of the Unitarians, called also Socinians (1687). The movement gained popularity in England in the wake of the Enlightenment and began to become a formal denomination in 1774 when Theophilus Lindsey organised meetings with Joseph Priestley, founding the first avowedly Unitarian congregation in the country. This occurred at Essex Street Church in London.[ citation needed ]

The first official acceptance of the Unitarian faith on the part of a congregation in America was by King's Chapel in Boston, which settled James Freeman (1759–1835) in 1782, and revised the Prayer Book into a mild Unitarian liturgy in 1785. In 1800, Joseph Stevens Buckminster became minister of the Brattle Street Church in Boston, where his brilliant sermons, literary activities, and academic attention to the German "New Criticism" helped shape the subsequent growth of Unitarianism in New England. Unitarian Henry Ware (1764–1845) was appointed as the Hollis professor of divinity at Harvard College, in 1805. Harvard Divinity School then shifted from its conservative roots to teach Unitarian theology (see Harvard and Unitarianism). Buckminster's close associate William Ellery Channing (1780–1842) was settled over the Federal Street Church in Boston, 1803, and in a few years he became the leader of the Unitarian movement. A theological battle with the Congregational Churches resulted in the formation of the American Unitarian Association at Boston in 1825.[ citation needed ]

Beliefs

Christology

Unitarians believe that mainline Christianity does not adhere to strict monotheism, but that Unitarians do by maintaining that Jesus was a great man and a prophet of God, perhaps even a supernatural being, but not God himself. [2] They believe Jesus did not claim to be God and that his teachings did not suggest the existence of a triune God. Unitarians believe in the moral authority but not necessarily the divinity of Jesus. Their theology is thus opposed to the trinitarian theology of other Christian denominations.[ citation needed ]

Unitarian Christology can be divided according to whether or not Jesus is believed to have had a pre-human existence. Both forms maintain that God is one being and one "person" and that Jesus is the (or a) Son of God, but generally not God himself. [29]

In the early 19th century, Unitarian Robert Wallace identified three particular classes of Unitarian doctrines in history:

Unitarianism is considered a factor in the decline of classical deism because there were people who increasingly preferred to identify themselves as Unitarians rather than deists. [32]

Several tenets of Unitarianism overlap with the predominant Muslim view of Jesus and Islamic understanding of monotheism, although no direct link between the two is suggested. [34]

"Socinian" Christology

Fausto Sozzini was an Italian theologian who helped define Unitarianism and also served the Polish Brethren church FaustusSocinus.jpg
Fausto Sozzini was an Italian theologian who helped define Unitarianism and also served the Polish Brethren church

The Christology commonly called "Socinian" (after Fausto Sozzini, one of the founders of Unitarian theology) refers to the belief that Jesus Christ began his life when he was born as a human. In other words, the teaching that Jesus pre-existed his human body is rejected. There are various views ranging from the belief that Jesus was simply a human (psilanthropism) who, because of his greatness, was adopted by God as his Son (adoptionism) to the belief that Jesus literally became the son of God when he was conceived by the Holy Spirit (see Virgin birth of Jesus).[ citation needed ]

This Christology existed in some form or another prior to Sozzini. Theodotus of Byzantium, [35] Artemon [36] and Paul of Samosata [37] denied the pre-existence of Christ. These ideas were continued by Marcellus of Ancyra and his pupil Photinus in the 4th century AD. [38] [39] In the Radical Reformation and Anabaptist movements of the 16th century this idea resurfaced with Sozzini's uncle, Lelio Sozzini. Having influenced the Polish Brethren to a formal declaration of this belief in the Racovian Catechism, Fausto Sozzini involuntarily ended up giving his name to this Christological position, [40] which continued with English Unitarians such as John Biddle, Thomas Belsham, Theophilus Lindsey, Joseph Priestley, and James Martineau. In America, most of the early Unitarians were "Arian" in Christology (see below), but among those who held to a "Socinian" view was James Freeman.[ citation needed ]

Regarding the virgin birth of Jesus among those who denied the preexistence of Christ, some held to it and others did not. Its denial is sometimes ascribed to the Ebionites; however, Origen (Contra Celsum v.61) and Eusebius (HE iii.27) both indicate that some Ebionites did accept the virgin birth. [41] On the other hand, Theodotus of Byzantium, Artemon, and Paul of Samosata all accepted the virgin birth. [42] In the early days of Unitarianism, the stories of the virgin birth were accepted by most. There were a number of Unitarians who questioned the historical accuracy of the Bible, including Symon Budny, Jacob Palaeologus, Thomas Belsham, and Richard Wright, and this made them question the virgin birth story. [43] [44] [45] [46] Beginning in England and America in the 1830s, and manifesting itself primarily in Transcendentalist Unitarianism, which emerged from the German liberal theology associated primarily with Friedrich Schleiermacher, the psilanthropist view increased in popularity. [47] Its proponents took an intellectual and humanistic approach to religion. They embraced evolutionary concepts, asserted the "inherent goodness of man", and abandoned the doctrine of biblical infallibility, rejecting most of the miraculous events in the Bible (including the virgin birth). Notable examples are James Martineau, Theodore Parker, Ralph Waldo Emerson and Frederic Henry Hedge. Famous American Unitarian William Ellery Channing was a believer in the virgin birth until later in his life, after he had begun his association with the Transcendentalists. [48] [49] [50]

"Arian" Christology

Constantine I burning Arian books, illustration from a book of canon law, c. 825 Constantine burning Arian books (cropped).jpg
Constantine I burning Arian books, illustration from a book of canon law, c. 825

The Christology commonly called "Arian" holds that Jesus, before his human life, existed as the Logos, a being created by God, who dwelt with God in heaven. There are many varieties of this form of Unitarianism, ranging from the belief that the Son was a divine spirit of the same nature as God before coming to earth, to the belief that he was an angel or other lesser spirit creature of a wholly different nature from God.[ citation needed ] Not all of these views necessarily were held by Arius, the namesake of this Christology. It is still Nontrinitarian because, according to this belief system, Jesus has always been beneath God, though higher than humans. Arian Christology was not a majority view among Unitarians in Poland, Transylvania or England. It was only with the advent of American Unitarianism that it gained a foothold in the Unitarian movement.[ citation needed ]

Among early Christian theologians who believed in a pre-existent Jesus who was subordinate to God the Father were Lucian of Antioch, Eusebius of Caesarea, Arius, Eusebius of Nicomedia, Asterius the Sophist, Eunomius, and Ulfilas, as well as Felix, Bishop of Urgell. Proponents of this Christology also associate it (more controversially) with Justin Martyr and Hippolytus of Rome. Antitrinitarian Michael Servetus did not deny the pre-existence of Christ, so he may have believed in it. [51] [ unreliable source? ] (In his "Treatise Concerning the Divine Trinity" Servetus taught that the Logos (Word) was the reflection of Christ, and "that reflection of Christ was 'the Word with God" that consisted of God Himself, shining brightly in heaven, "and it was God Himself" [52] and that "the Word was the very essence of God or the manifestation of God's essence, and there was in God no other substance or hypostasis than His Word, in a bright cloud where God then seemed to subsist. And in that very spot the face and personality of Christ shone bright." [52] ) Isaac Newton had Arian beliefs as well. [53] [54] [55] Famous 19th-century Arian Unitarians include Andrews Norton [56] and Dr. William Ellery Channing (in his earlier years). [57]

Other beliefs

Although there is no specific authority on convictions of Unitarian belief aside from rejection of the Trinity, the following beliefs are generally accepted: [58] [59] [60] [61] [62] [63]

Unitarians have liberal views of God, Jesus, the world and purpose of life as revealed through reason, scholarship, science, philosophy, scripture and other prophets and religions. They believe that reason and belief are complementary and that religion and science can co-exist and guide them in their understanding of nature and God. They also do not enforce belief in creeds or dogmatic formulas. Although there is flexibility in the nuances of belief or basic truths for the individual Unitarian Christian, general principles of faith have been recognized as a way to bind the group in some commonality.[ citation needed ]

Unitarian Christians reject the doctrine of some Christian denominations that God chooses to redeem or save only those certain individuals that accept the creeds of, or affiliate with, a specific church or religion, from a common ruin or corruption of the mass of humanity.[ citation needed ]

In 1938, The Christian leader attributed "the religion of Jesus, not a religion about Jesus" to Unitarians, [65] though the phrase was used earlier by Congregationalist Rollin Lynde Hartt in 1924 [66] and earlier still by US President Thomas Jefferson.[ citation needed ]

Worship

Worship within the Unitarian tradition accommodates a wide range of understandings of God, while the focus of the service may be simply the celebration of life itself. Each Unitarian congregation is at liberty to devise its own form of worship, though commonly, Unitarians will light their chalice (symbol of faith), have a story for all ages; and include sermons, prayers, hymns and songs. Some will allow attendees to publicly share their recent joys or concerns. [67]

Modern Christian Unitarian organizations

First Unitarian Meeting House in Madison, Wisconsin, designed by Unitarian Frank Lloyd Wright 1st-Unitarian.jpg
First Unitarian Meeting House in Madison, Wisconsin, designed by Unitarian Frank Lloyd Wright

This section relates to Unitarian churches and organizations today which are still specifically Christian, whether within or outside Unitarian Universalism. Unitarian Universalism, conversely, refers to the embracing of non-Christian religions.

International groups

Some Unitarian Christian groups are affiliated with the International Council of Unitarians and Universalists (ICUU), founded in 1995. The ICUU tends to contain a majority membership who express specifically Unitarian Christian beliefs, rather than the religious pluralism of the UUA, but nevertheless remain liberal, open-minded and inclusive communities. [68] The ICUU has "full member" groups in the United States, Australia, New Zealand, United Kingdom, Canada, Brazil, Czech Republic, Finland, Germany, Hungary, Indonesia, India, Nigeria, Pakistan, Philippines, Romania, South Africa, and Sri Lanka.[ citation needed ]

The ICUU includes small "Associate groups", including Congregazione Italiana Cristiano Unitariana, Turin (founded in 2004) [69] and the Bét Dávid Unitarian Association, Oslo (founded 2005). [70]

Transylvania, Hungary and Romania

The Darjiu fortified church, a 13th-century fortified church belonging to the Unitarian Church of Transylvania. This is the only Unitarian fortified church in Transylvania which is on the UNESCO's World Heritage List. Derzs1.jpg
The Dârjiu fortified church, a 13th-century fortified church belonging to the Unitarian Church of Transylvania. This is the only Unitarian fortified church in Transylvania which is on the UNESCO's World Heritage List.

The largest Unitarian denomination worldwide today is also the oldest surviving Unitarian denomination (since 1565, first use of the term "Unitarian" 1600); [71] the Unitarian Church of Transylvania (in Romania, which is in union with the Unitarian Church in Hungary). The church in Romania and Hungary still looks to the statement of faith, the Summa Universae Theologiae Christianae secundum Unitarios (1787), though today assent to this is not required. The modern Unitarian Church in Hungary (25,000 members) and the Transylvanian Unitarian Church (75,000 members) are affiliated with the International Council of Unitarians and Universalists (ICUU) and claim continuity with the historical Unitarian Christian tradition established by Ferenc Dávid in 1565 in Transylvania under John II Sigismund Zápolya. The Unitarian churches in Hungary and Transylvania are structured and organized along a church hierarchy that includes the election by the synod of a national bishop who serves as superintendent of the Church. Many Hungarian Unitarians embrace the principles of rationalist Unitarianism. [72] Unitarian high schools exist only in Transylvania (Romania), including the John Sigismund Unitarian Academy in Cluj-Napoca (Kolozsvár), the Protestant Theological Institute of Cluj, and the Berde Mózes Unitárius Gimnázium in Cristuru Secuiesc (Székelykeresztúr); both teach Rationalist Unitarianism.[ citation needed ]

United Kingdom

Newington Green Unitarian Church in London, England. Built in 1708, this is the oldest nonconformist church in London still in use. Unitarian chapel newington green.jpg
Newington Green Unitarian Church in London, England. Built in 1708, this is the oldest nonconformist church in London still in use.

The Unitarian Christian Association (UCA) was founded in the United Kingdom in 1991 by Rev. Lancelot Garrard (1904–93) [73] and others to promote specifically Christian ideas within the General Assembly of Unitarian and Free Christian Churches (GAUFCC), the national Unitarian body in Great Britain. Just as the UUCF and ICUU maintain formal links with the Unitarian Universalist Association in the USA, so the UCA is an affiliate body of the GAUFCC in Great Britain.[ citation needed ]

The majority of Unitarian Christian publications are sponsored by an organization and published specifically for their membership. Generally, they do not serve as a tool for missionary work or encouraging conversions.[ citation needed ]

The leadership of the Church is made up of Accredited Lay Preachers and Professional Ministers.

United States

A Unitarian Assembly in Louisville, Kentucky. Civil marriage is a civil right.JPG
A Unitarian Assembly in Louisville, Kentucky.

The Unitarian Christian Conference USA is a network of congregations and ministers in the United States identifying with the historic Unitarian Christian tradition. The Unitarian Christian Conference USA promotes the concept of the unity of God and the message and example of Jesus of Nazareth as a rational and enriching spiritual path for personal development and a guide for creating a world of justice, peace and human dignity. [75]

The Unitarian Universalist Christian Fellowship (UUCF) was founded in 1945 and as such predates the consolidation of the American Unitarian Association (AUA) and Universalist Church of America (UCA) into the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) in 1961. UUCF continues as a subgroup of UUA serving the Christian members.[ citation needed ]

The American Unitarian Conference (AUC) was formed in 2000 and stands between UUA and ICUU in attachment to the Christian element of modern Unitarianism. The American Unitarian Conference is open to non-Christian Unitarians, being particularly popular with non-Christian theists and deists. [76] The AUC has[ when? ] four congregations in the United States.[ citation needed ]

Unitarian Christian Ministries International was a Unitarian ministry incorporated in South Carolina until its dissolution in 2013 when it merged with the Unitarian Christian Emerging Church. The Unitarian Christian Emerging Church has recently undergone reorganization and today is known as the Unitarian Christian Church of America. [77]

Australia and New Zealand

The Sydney Unitarian Church was founded 1850 under a Reverend Mr Stanley and was a vigorous denomination during the 19th century. The modern church, no longer unitarian Christian, has properties in Adelaide, Sydney and Melbourne, and smaller congregations elsewhere in Australia and New Zealand. [78]

South Africa

The Unitarian movement in South Africa was founded in 1867 by David Faure, [79] member of a well-known Cape family. He encountered advanced liberal religious thought while completing his studies at the University of Leiden in Holland for the ministry of the Dutch Reformed Church in Cape Town.

Biblical Unitarian Movement

Biblical Unitarianism (or "Biblical Unitarianism" or "biblical unitarianism") [80] identifies the Christian belief that the Bible teaches God is a singular person, the Father, and that Jesus is a distinct being, his son. A few denominations use this term to describe themselves, clarifying the distinction between them and those churches [81] which, from the late 19th century, evolved into modern British Unitarianism and, primarily in the United States, Unitarian Universalism. In Italy the Biblical Unitarian Movement powered by the ideas of Sozzini and others [82] is represented today by the churches associated with the Christian Church in Italy. [83]

Notable Unitarians

Sir Isaac Newton held Arian views GodfreyKneller-IsaacNewton-1689.jpg
Sir Isaac Newton held Arian views

Notable Unitarians include classical composers Edvard Grieg and Béla Bartók, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Theodore Parker and Thomas Lamb Eliot in theology and ministry, Oliver Heaviside, Erasmus Darwin, Joseph Priestley, John Archibald Wheeler, Linus Pauling, Sir Isaac Newton [84] and inventor Sir Francis Ronalds [85] [86] in science, George Boole in mathematics, Susan B. Anthony in civil government, Florence Nightingale in humanitarianism and social justice, John Bowring, Samuel Taylor Coleridge and Elizabeth Gaskell in literature, Frank Lloyd Wright in the arts, Josiah Wedgwood and Samuel Carter MP [87] in industry, Thomas Starr King in ministry and politics, and Charles William Eliot in education. Julia Ward Howe was a leader in the woman suffrage movement, the first ever woman to be elected to the Academy of Arts and Letters, and author of the Battle Hymn of the Republic along with volumes of poetry and other writing. Although raised a Quaker, Ezra Cornell, founder of Cornell University in Ithaca, New York, attended the Unitarian church and was one of the founders of Ithaca's First Unitarian Church. Eramus Darwin Shattuck, a signatory to the Oregon State Constitution, founded the first Unitarian Church in Oregon in 1865. [88]

Eleven Nobel prizes have been awarded to Unitarians: Robert Millikan and John Bardeen (twice) in Physics; Emily Green Balch, Albert Schweitzer, and Linus Pauling for Peace; George Wald and David H. Hubel in Medicine; Linus Pauling in Chemistry; and Herbert A. Simon in Economics.[ citation needed ]

Four presidents of the United States were Unitarians: John Adams, John Quincy Adams, Millard Fillmore, and William Howard Taft. Adlai Stevenson II, the Democratic presidential nominee in 1952 and 1956, was a Unitarian, and he was the last Unitarian to be nominated by a major party for president. Although a self-styled materialist, Thomas Jefferson was pro-Unitarian to the extent of advocating that it become the predominant religion in the United States.[ citation needed ]

British prime minister Neville Chamberlain was raised by his Unitarian statesman father, Joseph Chamberlain. Certainly, in the United Kingdom, Unitarianism – the religion of only a small minority of the country's population – had an enormous impact on Victorian politics, not only in the larger cities – Birmingham, Leeds, Manchester, and Liverpool – but in smaller communities like Leicester where there were so many Unitarian mayors that the Unitarian Chapel was known as the "Mayors' Nest".[ citation needed ]

In Birmingham a Unitarian church was opened in 1862. The Church of the Messiah, as it was called, was more than the centre of a small sect: it was a cultural and intellectual centre of a whole society, a place where ideas about society were openly and critically discussed. Henry W. Crosskey’s Birmingham Unitarian congregation included: Joseph Chamberlain, as well as Arthur, his younger brother, who was married to Louisa Kenrick; William Kenrick, his brother-in-law, who was married to Mary Chamberlain; and Sir Thomas Martineau, who was the nephew of Harriet Martineau, another outspoken public figure and author of the time. Sir Thomas Martineau (died 1893), was related to the Chamberlain family by marriage; Sir Thomas had married Emily Kenrick, the sister of Florence Chamberlain, née Kenrick. [89]

In Lambeth, South London, another two members of the Martineau family, Caroline and Constance, worked at Morley College, the former acting as (unpaid) principal for over 11 years. Several other prominent Unitarians were involved in the development of this liberal arts college, which was founded by actors at the Old Vic theatre. [90]

These elite British Unitarian families: the Nettlefolds, the Martineaus, the Luptons, the Kitsons and the Kenricks, found a most significant place in the social and political history of Victorian through to mid-20th-century Britain. [91] [92]

Other Unitarians include Sir Tim Berners-Lee, inventor of the World Wide Web [93] Lancelot Ware, founder of Mensa, Sir Adrian Boult, the conductor, Ray Kurzweil, notable inventor and futurist, and C. Killick Millard, founder of the Dignity in Dying society to support voluntary euthanasia. Ram Mohan Roy, an Indian reformer of the 18th century, was a Unitarian who published a book called Precepts of Jesus.[ citation needed ]

See also

Related Research Articles

Arianism is a nontrinitarian Christological doctrine which asserts the belief that Jesus Christ is the Son of God who was begotten by God the Father at a point in time, a creature distinct from the Father and is therefore subordinate to him, but the Son is also God. Arian teachings were first attributed to Arius, a Christian presbyter in Alexandria of Egypt. The term "Arian" is derived from the name Arius; and like "Christian", it was not a self-chosen designation but bestowed by hostile opponents—and never accepted by those on whom it had been imposed. The nature of Arius's teaching and his supporters were opposed to the theological views held by Homoousian Christians, regarding the nature of the Trinity and the nature of Christ. The Arian concept of Christ is based on the belief that the Son of God did not always exist but was begotten within time by God the Father.

Denial of the virgin birth of Jesus

Denial of the virgin birth of Jesus is found among various groups and individuals throughout the history of Christianity. These groups and individuals often took an approach to Christology which understands Jesus to be human, the literal son of human parents.

Trinity Christian doctrine that God is one God, but three coeternal consubstantial persons

The Christian doctrine of the Trinity holds that God is one God, but three coeternal consubstantial persons or hypostases—the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit—as "one God in three Divine Persons". The three Persons are distinct, yet are one "substance, essence or nature" (homoousios). In this context, a "nature" is what one is, whereas a "person" is who one is. Sometimes differing views are referred to as nontrinitarian. Trinitarianism contrasts with positions such as Binitarianism and Monarchianism, of which Modalistic Monarchianism and Unitarianism are subsets.

Unitarian Universalism Non-credal liberal religion

Unitarian Universalism (UU) is a liberal religion characterized by a "free and responsible search for truth and meaning". Unitarian Universalists assert no creed, but instead are unified by their shared search for spiritual growth. As such, their congregations include many atheists, agnostics, and theists within their membership. The roots of Unitarian Universalism lie in liberal Christianity, specifically Unitarianism and universalism. Unitarian Universalists state that from these traditions comes a deep regard for intellectual freedom and inclusive love. Congregations and members seek inspiration and derive insight from all major world religions.

Socinianism Christian doctrines taught by Lelio and Fausto Sozzini

Socinianism is a system of Christian doctrine named for Italians Lelio Sozzini and Fausto Sozzini, uncle and nephew, respectively, which was developed among the Polish Brethren in the Minor Reformed Church of Poland during the 16th and 17th centuries and embraced by the Unitarian Church of Transylvania during the same period. It is most famous for its nontrinitarian Christology but contains a number of other unorthodox beliefs as well.

Many Wikipedia articles on religious topics are not yet listed on this page. If you cannot find the topic you are interested in on this page, it still may already exist; you can try to find it using the "Search" box. If you find that it exists, you can edit this page to add a link to it.

The Polish Brethren were members of the Minor Reformed Church of Poland, a Nontrinitarian Protestant church that existed in Poland from 1565 to 1658. By those on the outside, they were called "Arians" or "Socinians", but themselves preferred simply to be called "Brethren" or "Christians," and, after their expulsion from Poland, "Unitarians".

Fausto Sozzini Polish-Italian theologian

Fausto Paolo Sozzini, also known as Faustus Socinus or Faust Socyn (Polish), was an Italian theologian and founder of the school of Christian thought known as Socinianism and the main theologian of the Minor Reformed Church of Poland.

Nicene Christianity A set of Christian doctrinal traditions reflecting the Nicene Creed

Nicene Christianity is a set of Christian doctrinal traditions which reflect the Nicene Creed, which was formulated at the First Council of Nicaea in AD 325 and amended at the First Council of Constantinople in AD 381.

Incarnation (Christianity)

In Christian theology, the incarnation is the belief that Jesus Christ, the second person of the Trinity, also known as God the Son or the Logos, "was made flesh" by being conceived in the womb of a woman, the Virgin Mary, also known as the Theotokos. The doctrine of the incarnation, then, entails that Jesus is fully God and fully human.

In Britain, the term Free Christian refers specifically to individual members and whole congregations within the General Assembly of Unitarian and Free Christian Churches.

Biblical Unitarianism encompasses the key doctrines of nontrinitarian Christians who affirm the Bible as their sole authority, and from it base their beliefs that God the Father is a singular being, the only one God, and that Jesus Christ is God’s son, but not divine. The term "biblical Unitarianism" is connected first with Robert Spears and Samuel Sharpe of the Christian Life magazine in the 1880s. It is a neologism that gained increasing currency in nontrinitarian literature during the 20th century as the mainstream Unitarian churches moved away from belief in the Bible and, in the United States, towards merger with Universalism. It has been used since the late 19th century by conservative Christian Unitarians, and sometimes by historians, to refer to Scripture-fundamentalist Unitarians of the 16th–18th centuries. Its use is problematic in that Unitarians from the 17th to the 20th centuries all had attachment to the Bible, but in differing ways.

Christian universalism Christian belief that all will be reconciled to God

Christian universalism is a school of Christian theology focused around the doctrine of universal reconciliation – the view that all human beings will ultimately be "saved" and restored to a right relationship with God.

Servetism refers to the theology of Michael Servetus, which affirms that Christ was God manifested in the flesh, yet not as part of a tri-personal God, and that he did not exist previously as the Son, but as the divine Logos that became the Son after incarnation.

Unitarianism, as a Christian denominational family of churches, was first defined in Poland-Lithuania and Transylvania in the late 16th century. It was then further developed in England and America until the early 19th century, although theological ancestors are to be found as far back as the early days of Christianity. It matured and reached its classical form in the middle 19th century. Later historical development has been diverse in different countries.

The pre-existence of Christ asserts the existence of Christ before his incarnation as Jesus. One of the relevant Bible passages is John 1:1–18 where, in the Trinitarian interpretation, Christ is identified with a pre-existent divine hypostasis called the Logos or Word. There are nontrinitarian views that question the aspect of personal pre-existence or the aspect of divinity or both.

The Protestant Reformation began in 1520s in the Italian states, although forms of pre-Protestantism were already present before the 16th century. The Reformation in Italy collapsed quickly at the beginning of the 17th century. Its development was hindered by the Inquisition and also popular disdain.

Chiesa Cristiana in Italia

The Chiesa Cristiana in Italia is a small biblical Unitarian group in Italy which separated from the Assemblies of God in the 1990s. The group considers itself inspired by the Christian doctrine of the early Church and by early Italian Unitarians such as Laelio Sozzini.

References

Citations

  1. Knight, Kevin (ed.), "The dogma of the Trinity", Catholic Encyclopedia, New Advent
  2. 1 2 Miano, David (2003), An Explanation of Unitarian Christianity, AUC, p. 15
  3. Drzymala, Daren. 2002. Biblical Christianity. Xulon press. p. 122: "Classically, Unitarian Universalist Christians [and Unitarian Christians] have understood Jesus as a Savior because he was a God-filled human being, not a supernatural being."
  4. Joseph Priestley, one of the founders of the Unitarian movement, defined Unitarianism as the belief of primitive Christianity before later corruptions set in. Among these corruptions, he included not only the doctrine of the Trinity, but also various other orthodox doctrines and usages (Earl Morse Wilbur, A History of Unitarianism, Harvard University Press 1952, pp. 302–303).
  5. From The Catechism of the Hungarian Unitarian Church in Transylvanian Romania: "Unitarians do not teach original sin. We do not believe that through the sin of the first human couple we all became corrupted. It would contradict the love and justice of God to attribute to us the sin of others, because sin is one's own personal action" (Ferencz Jozsef, 20th ed., 1991. Translated from Hungarian by Gyorgy Andrasi, published in The Unitarian Universalist Christian, FALL/WINTER, 1994, Volume 49, Nos.3–4; VII:107).
  6. In his history of the Unitarians, David Robinson writes: "At their inception, both Unitarians and Universalists shared a common theological enemy: Calvinism." He explains that they "consistently attacked Calvinism on the related issues of original sin and election to salvation, doctrines that in their view undermined human moral exertion." (D. Robinson, The Unitarians and the Universalists, Greenwood Press, 1985, pp. 3, 17).
  7. "Although considering it, on the whole, an inspired book, Unitarians also regard the Bible as coming not only from God, but also from humans ... Unitarians therefore do not believe in the infallibility of the Bible, as some other Christians do." (D. Miano, An Explanation of Unitarian Christianity, AUC, 2003, 2007)
  8. "Frequently asked questions (FAQ) - Unitarians". www.unitarian.org.uk.
  9. James Hastings Encyclopaedia of Religion and Ethics: Algonquins-Art p 785 – 2001 "The first Unitarians were Italians, and the majority took refuge in Poland, where the laxity of the laws and the independence of the nobility secured for them a toleration which would have been denied to their views in other countries."
  10. The encyclopedia of Protestantism 137 Hans Joachim Hillerbrand – 2004 "The so-called Golden Age of Unitarianism in Transylvania (1540–1571) resulted in a rich production of works both in Hungarian and Latin".
  11. Erwin Fahlbusch The encyclopedia of Christianity 5 603 2008 "Lindsey attempted but failed to gain legal relief for Anglican Unitarians, so in 1774 he opened his own distinctly Unitarian church on Essex Street, London, where today's British Unitarian headquarters are still located."
  12. American Unitarianism: or, A Brief history of "The progress and State of the Unitarian Churches in America, third edition, 1815 "So early as the year 1786, Dr. Freeman had persuaded his church to adopt a liturgy, which the Rev. ... Thus much for the history of Unitarianism at the Stone Chapel. "
  13. "Unitarianism in Khasi-Jaintia Hills: A unique movement - Times of India". The Times of India. Retrieved 2018-09-26.
  14. ed. J. Gordon Melton Encyclopedia of American Religions (8th ed.) "Brought together in this chapter as the 'liberal' family of churches and 'religious' organizations are those groups that have challenged the orthodox Christian dominance of Western religious life: Unitarianism, universalism, and infidelism" (p. 611).
  15. L. Sue Baugh, Essentials of English Grammar: A Practical Guide to the Mastery of English ( ISBN   9780844258218). Second Edition 1994, p. 59: "Religious Names and Terms: The names of all religions, denominations, and local groups are capitalized."
  16. J. Gordon Melton, Encyclopedia of Protestantism, 2005, p. 543: "Unitarianism – The word unitarian [italics] means one who believes in the oneness of God; historically it refers to those in the Christian community who rejected the doctrine of the Trinity (one God expressed in three persons). Non-Trinitarian Protestant churches emerged in the 16th century in ITALY, POLAND, and TRANSYLVANIA."
  17. Letter from Matthew F. Smith to Editor World faiths Encounter, 7–12 World Congress of Faiths – 1994 – "In an otherwise excellent article by Jasbir Singh Ahluwalia, 'Sikh Spirit in an Age of Plurality' (No. 6, November 1993), the writer makes a number of pejorative remarks about 'unitarianism', associating the term with a striving for a monolithic polity and reductionism to a common denominator. This is a very unfortunate misuse of the word. A correct definition of 'unitarianism' (small 'u') is the mono-hypo-static belief system of someone not directly associated with the Unitarian movement, almost always applied to a person from the Christian tradition, as the word was coined in distinction to the orthodox 'Trinitarian' doctrine of Christianity. 'Unitarians' (capital 'U') are, of course, those who follow the Unitarian approach to religion and are formally associated with the movement. In neither case can it be claimed that there is an underlying agenda towards reductionism and uniformity. Quite the reverse, in fact. Modern Unitarianism is remarkable among religions in not only welcoming the variety of faiths that there are to be found but also, as a creedless church, welcoming and encouraging acceptance of the same. We readily accept that not all our members are 'realist' theists, for example. Our long-standing commitment to interfaith understanding, evident in our practical support of the International Association for Religious Freedom, the World Congress of Faiths and the newly established International Interfaith centre in Oxford cannot be taken to mean that Unitarians are seeking the creation of a single world religion out of the old. I do not know a single Unitarian who believes or seeks that. On the contrary, we reject uniformity and cherish instead the highest degree of spiritual integrity, both of the existing religious traditions of the world and of religious persons as unique, thinking individuals. Matthew F Smith, Information Officer" (Essex Street Chapel, Unitarian Church headquarters, UK)
  18. "The name originated at the time of the great dispute at Gyulafehérvár in 1568, in the course of which Mélius quite often concluded his argument by saying, Ergo Deus est trinitarius.... Hence his party naturally came to be called Trinitarians and their opponents would naturally be called Unitarians. The name seems thus to have come into general use only gradually and it was long before it was employed in the formal proclamations of their Superintendents.... It is not found in print as the denomination of the church until 1600, when the unitaria religio is named as one of the four received religions in a decree of the Diet of Léczfalva (cf. Magyar Emlékek, iv, 551) in the extreme southeastern part of Transylvania. The name was never used by the Socinians in Poland; but late in the seventeenth century Transylvanian Unitarian students made it well-known in Holland, where the Socinians in exile, who had never adopted Socinian as the name of their movement and were more and more objecting to it, welcomed it as distinguishing them from Trinitarians. It thus gradually superseded the term Socinian, and spread to England and America." Earl Morse Wilbur, A History of Unitarianism, vol. 2, pp. 47–48.
  19. Tuggy, Dale, (2009). Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy [ permanent dead link ].
  20. Robinson, The Unitarians and the Universalists, p. 159-184.
  21. AW Gomes, EC Beisner, and RM Bowman, Unitarian Universalism (Zondervan, 1998), pp. 30–79.
  22. American Unitarian association, 1886. The Unitarian Register. American Unitarian Association. p. 563
  23. Rationalist Press Association Limited, 1957. Humanist, Volume 72. p. III
  24. George Willis Cooke, Unitarianism in America (AUA, 1902), pp. 224–30.
  25. Engaging Our Theological Diversity (PDF), UUA, pp. 70–2
  26. "The religious movement whose history we are endeavoring to trace...became fully developed in thought and polity in only four countries, one after another, namely Poland, Transylvania, England and America, but in each of these it showed, along with certain individual characteristics, a general spirit, a common point of view, and a doctrinal pattern that tempt one to regard them as all outgrowths of a single movement which passed from one to another; for nothing could be more natural than to presume that these common features implied a common ancestry. Yet such is not the fact, for in each of these four lands the movement, instead of having originated elsewhere, and been translated only after attaining mature growth, appears to have sprung independently and directly from its own native roots, and to have been influenced by other and similar movements only after it had already developed an independent life and character of its own." Earl Morse Wilbur, A History of Unitarianism, vol. 2 (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1952), p. 166.
  27. Hewett, Racovia, pp. 20–1.
  28. Earl A. Pope, "Protestantism in Romania", in Sabrina Petra Ramet (ed.), Protestantism and Politics in Eastern Europe and Russia: The Communist and Postcommunist Eras, Duke University Press, Durham, 1992, p.160. ISBN   0-8223-1241-7
  29. Hastings, James, Encyclopedia of Religion and Ethics, 2, p. 785, Unitarianism started, on the other hand, with the denial of the pre-existence... These opinions, however, must be considered apart from Arianism proper
  30. Wallace, Robert. 1819. A Plain Statement and Scriptural Defence of the Leading Doctrines of Unitarianism . "Statement of The Peculiar Doctrines of Unitarians": pp. 7-10
  31. See also Socinianism, Arianism and Unitarianism , by Christian Churches of God, Wade Cox, Summary No. 185z
  32. Mossner, Ernest Campbell (1967). "Deism". Encyclopedia of Philosophy 2. Collier-MacMillan. pp. 326–336.
  33. Robert S. Corrington. "Unitarianism" (PDF). Caspersen School of Graduate Studies at Drew University: 7. Retrieved 2016-11-26.
  34. Setton, Kenneth (1969). A History of the Crusades. p. 466.
  35. Hoben, Allan (1903), The virgin birth, Of the above-stated beliefs that of Theodotus of Byzantium is perhaps the most striking, in that, while it admits the virgin birth, it denies the deductions commonly made therefrom, attributing to Christ only pre-eminent righteousness
  36. Bright, William, Some Aspects of Primitive Church Life, p. 127, His original view was put into more definite form by Artemon, who regarded Jesus Christ as distinguished from prophets by (1) virgin-birth, (a) superior virtue
  37. Charles, Tutorial prayer book, p. 599.
  38. Houdt, Toon, Self-presentation and social identification, p. 238, Christian apologists traced the origin of Socinianism to the doctrine of Photinus (4th century), who according to St. Augustine denied the pre-existence of Christ
  39. R. P. C. Hanson (1916–1988), Lightfoot Professor of Divinity The Search for the Christian Doctrine of God: The Arian Controversy, 318–381 (9780801031465): 1973 "Photinus' doctrine appears to have been a form of what might be called middle Marcellism, i.e. what Marcellus originally taught before his vicissitudes caused him to temper the edge of his doctrine and take account of the criticisms of his friends as well as of his enemies, a little more moderated."
  40. Watson, R., A Biblical and theological dictionary, p. 999
  41. Bromiley, Geoffrey W. (1982), International Standard Bible Encyclopedia, E–J, p. 9, Origen was the first to distinguish between two types of Ebionites theologically: those who believed in the Virgin Birth and those who rejected it
  42. Stead, Christopher (1996-01-27), Philosophy in Christian Antiquity, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, ISBN   978-0-521-46955-5 189 pp.[ page needed ]
  43. Webb, R. K. (2007), "Miracles in English Unitarian Thought", in Micale, Mark S.; Dietle, Robert L; Gay, Peter (eds.), Enlightenment, passion, modernity: historical essays in European Thought and Culture, p. 120
  44. Belsham (1806), "Remarks on Mr. Proud's Pamphlet", Monthly Repository (I), p. 423
  45. Wright, Richard (1808), An Essay on the Miraculous Conception of Jesus Christ, London
  46. Wright, R, A review of the missionary life and labors of Richard Wright, p. 68, After they were excited to think freely, some gave up the doctrine of the miraculous conception, from reading the scriptures only, and observing certain things there with which it could not be reconciled
  47. Gura, Philip F. American Transcendentalism: A History. New York: Hill and Wang, 2007: 7–8. ISBN   0-8090-3477-8.
  48. Placher, William Carl (1983), A history of Christian theology: an introduction, p. 265, Rationalist Unitarians like William Ellery Channing had argued from the Bible and the evidence of its miracles
  49. Chadwick, John White, William Ellery Channing: Minister of Religion, p. 440
  50. Mendelsohn, Jack (1971), Channing, the Reluctant Radical: a biography, A Suffolk County grand jury indicted him on three charges of blasphemy and obscenity: (1) he had quoted a scurrilous passage by Voltaire disparaging the virgin birth of Jesus
  51. Odhner, CT (1910), Michael Servetus, His Life and Teachings, p. 77, It will be seen from these extracts how completely without foundation is the assertion that Servetus denied the eternal pre-existence of Christ
  52. 1 2 Servetus, Michael (1553). The Restoration of Christianity – An English Translation of Christianismi restitutio, 1553, Translated by Christopher A. Hoffman and Marian Hillar. Leiston – Queenston – Lampeter: The Edwin Mellen Press. p. 75. ISBN   978-0-7734-5520-7.
  53. Pfizenmaier, Thomas C. (1997), "Was Isaac Newton an Arian?", Journal of the History of Ideas (68), pp. 57–80, Among contemporary scholars, the consensus is that Newton was an Arian
  54. Wiles, Maurice F (1996), Archetypal Heresy: Arianism Through the Centuries, p. 133, modern Unitarianism emerged after Newton's death
  55. Nicholls, David (1995), God and Government in an 'age of Reason', p. 44, Unitarianism ideas emerged after Newton's death
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  65. An esteemed Unitarian minister (1938), "2", The Christian leader, 120, p. 1034, This view finds pat expression in the dictum that Christianity is the religion of Jesus, not a religion about Jesus
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  71. a the Diet of Lécfalva 1600, in Gordon A. Heads of Unitarian History
  72. Keyes, David (1999), Most Like An Arch, p. 106, And for those [UUs] who take the time to understand Transylvanian Unitarian beliefs, there may be some surprising discoveries to be made. They are humanists! Their Unitarian Christianity is steeped in rationalism, is heavily influenced by judaism
  73. Cross, Tony (1993-01-21), "The Rev. Lancelot Garrard", Obituary, The Independent
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  75. "Security Check Required".
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  79. Heller-Wagner, E. "Radical religion and civil society: The Unitarians of South Africa" (PDF). University of South Africa.
  80. Generally capitalized "b. U." – Dowley 1977, Larsen 2011, Robertson 1929, BFER 1882, PTR 1929, New Encyclopaedia Britannica 1987. See Wikipedia:Manual of Style (capital letters), article English capitalisation cites source: L. Sue Baugh, Essentials of English Grammar: A Practical Guide to the Mastery of English, Second Edition 1994, p. 59: "Religious Names and Terms: The names of all religions, denominations, and local groups are capitalized." Uncapitalized: Ankerberg.
  81. Tuggy, Dale, (2009). Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy [ permanent dead link ]. Accessed October 30, 2010.
  82. cf. Socinianism Servetus
  83. cf. "Christian Church in Italy beliefs". Archived from the original on 2012-10-28.
  84. Baierlein, Ralph. (1992). Newton to Einstein. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. p. 54. ISBN   0-521-42323-6.
  85. Ronalds, B.F. (2016). Sir Francis Ronalds: Father of the Electric Telegraph. London: Imperial College Press. ISBN   978-1-78326-917-4.
  86. "Francis Ronalds". Dictionary of Unitarian & Universalist Biography. Retrieved 10 February 2017.
  87. "Samuel Carter". Dictionary of Unitarian and Universalist Biography. Retrieved 20 March 2018.
  88. The Centennial History of Oregon 1811–1912 by Joseph Gaston, p. 582.
  89. Times, Waikato. "Waikato Times, Volume XXVIII, Issue 2328, 11 June 1887, Page 2". Waikato Times (Papers Past) 11 June 1887. Retrieved 30 March 2015. mr Thomas martineau....will rise "Sir Thomas"....he (Sir Thomas) is a nephew of Harriet Martineau
  90. Offspring of the Vic by Denis Richards, originally published in 1958
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  92. Holt, Raymond V. (1906). ": Chapter 3, including Georgian and Victorian period. Ref Chamberlain, Lupton (Leeds) and Martineau, Nettlefold, Kenrick (Birmingham) families". The Unitarian Contribution to Social Progress in England (PDF). Lindsey Press. Archived from the original (PDF) on March 2, 2014. Retrieved March 1, 2013.
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  • John White Chadwick, Old and New Unitarian Belief (Boston, 1894).
  • George Willis Cooke, Unitarianism in America: a History of its Origin and Development (Boston, 1902).
  • Patrick Navas, Divine Truth or Human Tradition: A Reconsideration of the Roman Catholic-Protestant Doctrine of the Trinity in Light of the Hebrew and Christian Scriptures (Bloomington, Indiana 2007). ISBN   1-4259-4832-4.
  • Earl Morse Wilbur, A History of Unitarianism: Socinianism and Its Antecedents, Harvard University Press, 1945.
  • Andrew M. Hill, The Unitarian Path, Lindsey Press (London, 1994). ISBN   0-85319-046-1.
  • Charles A. Howe, For Faith and Freedom: A Short History of Unitarianism in Europe, Skinner House Books (Boston, 1997). ISBN   1-55896-359-6.
  • Smith, Matthew F (2005). Christianity: The Complete Guide. London: Continuum. ISBN   0-8264-5937-4.

Bibliography

Further reading