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Jesus, Gamaliel and Constantine Part Three

By Rabbi Shlomo Nachman © 09.13.1989 (last updated 02.23.2017)

Recorded Live on Facebook

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Monarchianism, Arianism and the Judaizers
          The popular Nicolaitan Bishop Nicholas of Myra (March 15, 270 – December 6, 343) and Bishop Arius (250 or 256 – 336) often confronted one another in the early days of the Roman Church. On one such occasion during the First Council of Nicaea Nicholas physically assaulted Arius as he was explaining why the Council needed to honor the biblical truth of G-d's Oneness and reject the Nicolaitan deification of Iēsoús, a human being.

Nicholas of Myra Slapping Bishop Arius

Nicholas slapped Arius in the face, which was a violation of Roman protocol. At first "Saint Nick" was reprimanded by the council for this outrage but several of his Nicolaitan coconspirators claimed that Iēsoús and his virgin mother had appeared to them in a vision vindicating the assault on Arius! Nicholas was restored to his post and his fame and influence spread all the more. Christianity was becoming a violent religion. For his part, Arius turned the other cheek.

As stated previously, the "Nicolaitan Heresy" is referenced directly by John in the Book of Revelation, chapters 2 and 3, writen circa 90 CE. It is also indirectly referenced by Paul and others in the New Testament writings. One of its chief architects is remembered in the myths of Santa Claus, "Old Nick" or "the Stranger." I discuss this in more depth in my study Christmas: The Mother Of All Pagan Holidays.

In brief, "Old Nick" is one of the European monikers of Heylel or Satan that predates the Christian era. "Nick" or Old Nick is a well-known appellation of the devil as most dictionaries and folklore reference books on the topic will readily confirm. For instance:

The name "Nick" is related to and derived from the Dutch word nikken or devil. The word nikken stems from the Anglo-Saxon nac-an meaning "to slay." "Beware the Sranger who strangles by night!" Old/Ancient Nick is seen as the ruler and terrifying god of the Merovingians and the source of their bestea Neptuni Quinotauri similis who, it is believed, is directly related to Oannes and Atargati, Dagon, Venus and the Mer People. The Merovingians do trace their roots to Merovech (Meroveus or Merovius in Latin and Mérovée in French). He was the historic founder of the Salian Frankish Merovingian dynasty. According to their traditions, Merovech was born of a sea god after his mother was raped by a bestea Neptuni Quinotauri similis. Such Pagan dieties are said to have emerged from the Hebrew Nef-eel (from the root naw-fal) or Nephilim, the descendants of the Sons of Elohim who illicitely mated with the daughters of men according to the Torah.

More specifically, in the areas around Bavaria (seat of Merovingian power) there is said to be a river spirit named "Neck," "Nikke," or "Nokke." This nature spirit, god, or demon is of the same family of nature spirits as the Celtic Water Kelpie (supernatural water horses). These spirits are directly related to the Merman of Triton and are believed to arise from the Babylonian gods Oannes and Atargati, the Philistine Dagon and so on. This is said to demonstrate the ancient interconnections that exist throughout the European communities with their pre-Christian gods and the nature spirits dating back to the ancient Canaanites, back farther to the gods of Babylon before the global flood, and finally to the Nephilim referenced in the book of Genesis.

"Mero" is the root word of mermaid (and mermen) and directly references their fatheror source as "Neck," "Nikke," or "Nokke" through the connection with the Water Kelpi, which is to say, "Old Nick" in the guise of a quinotaur, a five-horned sea bull that "fell to earth" with the "Seed Givers of the Star Children" (i.e. the Nephilim and the Rapha referenced in the Holy Scriptures) is the source of the Nicolaitan heresy. Hence, Old Nick is the actual god of the Merovingians and father of the Nicolaitane.

Such topics quickly devolve into areas of debated mythology and "conspiracy theory" and I don't want to go there with this study, however that these ties exist in the minds of the people of the region where the Nicolaitan doctrines began is noteworthy. It is believed that the Merovingians emerged from the Nef-eel and worshiped the Nikken, and that this sect of Nicolaitans coopted the Way movement and established the Christian religion through the Nicolaitan hereies.

The Arian Resistence

As mentioned before, the word "Arian" comes from Bishop Arius' name and has nothing to do with "Aryan" racial issues.

Standing solidly against the rising tide of Paganism within the Church, Bishop Arius, Bishop Eusebius of Nicomedia and many others continued to work for the Christian acceptence of biblical monotheism as best they could. Bishop Eusebius of Nicomedia (died 341), like Arius, was a pupil of Lucian of Antioch and a strict monotheist. Eusebius of Nicomedia was the priest who baptized Constantine and was quite important in his day. He should not be confused with Eusebius of Caesarea who was bishop of Berytus (modern-day Beirut). Eusebius of Nicomedia later became Bishop of Nicomedia where the imperial court resided in Bithynia. He finally became Bishop of Constantinople itself, reigning from 338 untill his death. He was a lifelong "Arian" or Monarchian.

Despite the common moniker "Arianism" the doctrine is completely biblical and was embraced by the Nazarenes and other Way sects from the beginning of their Movement. Like Arianism, Monarchianism is the belief in the absolute Oneness of God as the sole King of the universes by the early followers of the Way sect. Their views on other issues are questionable but on the topic of strict biblical monotheism they were solid.

Lucian of Antioch

Arius and Eusebius of Nicomedia were students of Lucian of Antioch (circa 240 – January 7, 312 C.E.). Lucian was a celebrated Monarchian Christian presbyter, theologian and martyr. Lucian was the the first head of the School (Didaskaleion) of Antioch. Lucian is an important historic figure for many reasons. Besides being the teacher and inspiration of Bishops Arius and Eusebius of Nicomedia, he is also commonly credited with a critical recension of the text of the Septuagint and the Greek New Testament.

His scribal works were later used by the "Greek fathers" and by John Chrysostom (circa 349–407) who is so very important doctrinally to the (Eastern) Orthodox Church. This was confirmed by Jerome, although under pressure Jerome later on speak disparagingly of Lucian. Lucian's works are also of vital importance to the Western Church because they established the textual basis of the Textus Receptus (Received texts) from which the King James Bible was translated. The KJV was destined to become the most read and cited Bible translation in history. Only over the past 20 years has its popularity begun to decline.

The point, for our present purposes, is that Bishop Arius and his peers were doctrinally mainstream while Constantine and his supporters were the heretics. It was the Nicolaitans not the Arians who altered the teachings of Yeshua's followers. Christianity of today has little in common with the original Jewish Way movement. It is a wholly Nicolaitan ediface.

Lucian of Antioch was a student of Paul of Samosata (200 to 275 C.E.), the Monarchian Bishop of Antioch from 260 to 268. Seventy Nicolaitan bishops, priests and deacons met at Antioch and officially deposed Paul as bishop and excommunicated him for holding the earlier Way views on the nature of Yeshua. Paul continued to function as bishop however under his friend Zenobia's protection until the Romans took Palmyra in 272.

This is important to understand.

While we would prefer history be neat, with clean and precise edges, it seldom is. Constantine for instance built on the foundations laid by the earlier Nicolaitans and yet he is credited as the founder of Christianity because it was under his rule that the Church was codified and empowered. Even before 70 C.E. however, when Jerusalem fell to the Romans, the Nicolaitan heretics were working to usurp the Way, as John tells us circa 95 C.E. in the Book of Revelation (2:9, 3:9).

Likewise, from well before the days of Constantine men like Paul of Samosata were working to maintain the Way teachings and resist the apostates to the sect. The fierce and often absurd attacks made by the Nicolaitan Bishops against Paul of Samosata testify to his influence as a preserver of the Way in opposition to the Nicolaitans. Yet in the end, such vallient efforts did not bear fruit. The Way movement faded into the winds of history as Rabbi Gamaliel said would happen.

Even the Nicolaitan heretics acknowledged that the Nazarenes were not teaching a new doctrine. Eusebius for example charged that Paul of Samosata "attempted to revive the heresy of Artemon" (HE V.XXVII). This heresy, he said, teaches, "that the Saviour was a mere man." One "revives" that which has already existed. Even in his rejection therefore, Eusebius acknowledges the truth of Paul of Samosata's work by acknowedging that his heresy "revives" the teaching "that the Saviour was a mere man." This was indeed what the original Way movement believed. Yeshua was a normal human being and not a divine incarnation.

Little is known about Artemon (ca. 230 AD). He was a prominent Monarchian teacher in Rome who held Adoptionist Nontrinitarian views. In other words, he taught that Yeshua was a complete human being who had been so religiously observant that G-d "adopted" him. This adoption gave him more direct access to "the Father" than most people have.

Trinitarians like Constantine, Nicholas of Myra, Athanasius and others used the name "Arianism" as an epithet. It became a somber warning to all who held to the Way sect's doctrine of Yeshua's complete humanity. It also threatened all who refused to submit to the Nicolaitan heresies and the authority of the developing "Mother Church."

Emperor Constantine, a lifelong worshiper of Sol Invictus as discussed before, personally ordered the destruction all of Bishop Arius' writings (and all those that agreed with his views). The Nicolaitans deluged the literate Catholic public with deceitful diatribes against the popular Bishop and other Nazarenes. They severely persecuted anyone they found that held to biblical religion and branded them "Judaizers." The term Judaizer implied a bit more than most realize. It did refer to those Christians who looked back to the Jewish roots of the Way Movement for understanding, but more than that, it was an open condemnation of those believers in Iēsoús who failed to embrace his Roman deification. For hundreds of years the Church's penalty for Judaizing was death.

Hindus, Roman Pagans and others have avatars or "divine incarnations" of their gods like the ba'als, but Judaism, and more importantly Torah, does not allow for such. The G-d of the Bible is Echad Elohim, One G-d. He shares His glory with no one. This was Avraham Avinu's great revelation and is the foundational Truth of all biblical religion. The Church's diefication of Iēsoús and their triune god have no role in any biblical belief system.

The Shema declares:

Deuteronomy 6:4: Sh'ma Yisrael HaShem Elohaynu HaShem Echad:
"Hear, Israel, the Lord is our G-d, the Lord is One."

If one wishes to define a moment in time when the Way sect ceased to be a Jewish Movement in any form the adoption of this heresy would be it.

Bishop Arius was excommunicated from the Church (although later re-instated) and the Nicolaitans managed to deify their Iēsoús after the matter of the Roman sun god Sol Invictus and other Pagan godheads.

While Bishop Arius was excommunicated by Bishop Peter of Alexandria in 311 for his correct rejection of the deity of Yeshua, he was reinstated 313 and made presbyter of the Baucalis district of Alexandria. His was a roller coaster career in defense of the reformed Jewish doctrines of the Way. Ironically Arius is now accepted as a Catholic Saint (a Pagan-created Catholic declaration of certain humans as "demigods").

Despite the periodic persecutions by the Church some Nazarene congregations continued to meet across Europa, mainly in hiding, especially in the various Gothic and Germanic kingdoms and across North Africa. This was the case at least into the fifth to seventh centuries when the Church became powerful enough to crush the Nazarenes by military conquest, general persecution and various forms of political coercion. As the essential Nicolaitan heresies were adopted by the Church during the early centuries many people like Bishop Arius honorably resisted, many to the death, but in the end the Arian resistence was not enough and the Way sect was no more. As Rabbi Gamaiel said, had the movement been of G-d it would have survived, as Judaism has. It didn't.

Arian Catholics include:

The list is much longer of course, this is but an example of a few important Arians within the Church.

Despite what most believe, the Church did not always teach what it does today.

Continue to Part Four

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