|Doctrines|| ||Monarchianism derives
from the Greek word monarchia meaning "uniqueness of first principle". The
term monarchia was used by Christians who were concerned that certain
interpretations of the doctrine of the Trinity were inconsistent with true
monotheism. They sought to explain the person of Jesus in such a way that
it preserved the unity of God.|
|History|| ||Monarchianism emerged in
Asia Minor and came to Rome in about 190. The first group, sometimes
described as adoptionist monarchians, was led by Theodotus of Byzantium.
They claimed that Christ was a man, born of the Virgin Mary and the Holy
Spirit, who was adopted by God at his baptism and deified after his
resurrection. The second group, led by Noetus of Smyrna, claimed that
there was no difference between the Father and the Son. It was God the
Father who was born of the Virgin Mary and suffered on the cross. This
position later came to be known by its critics as "Patripassianism".|
A more developed form of monarchianism was taught by Sabellius, a Christian who lived in Rome in the early part of the 3rd century. According to Sabellius the terms "Father", "Son" and "Spirit" did not represent distinct realities but three modes in which God reveals himself. This view of the Godhead has come to be known as "modalistic monarchianism".
The claims of the monarchians were addressed by the church councils of the 4th century which affirmed the distinctness of the persons of the Trinity.
|Symbols|| ||The monarchians had no
distinctive symbol system.|
|Adherents|| ||No contemporary