Christian History 1300

MICHAEL THE ARCHANGEL
MICHAEL THE ARCHANGEL
ENGRAVING BY GUSTAVE DORE OF "SATAN"
ENGRAVING BY GUSTAVE DORE OF "SATAN"
ANGELS
ANGELS

ANGELS

It was in the Thirteenth Century that angelology officially established itself as a subject of church teaching. St. Bonaventure proposed: “A hierarchy is an ordered power of sacred and rational realities, which preserves for those who are subordinate their proper authority over others. This applies not only to ecclesiastical or human hierarchy, but also to angelic hierarchy.

Angels were a proper topic for Christian doctrine because they participate in divine grace. People were curious about the spiritual nature of angels. The question of who the devil and his evil angels are, and where they came from, was a cause for wonder. The Greek Church Fathers taught that the angels were created before the physical world. Thomas Aquinas believed that angels were not created before the physical world.

Christ had said in John 8:44, that the devil had been “a murderer from the beginning.” If this referred to the same beginning spoken of in Genesis, then the devil must have been created evil. Augustine wrote, “It is not groundless to suppose that the devil fell by pride from the beginning of time and never lived in peace and blessedness with the holy angels, but apostatized from his Creator at the very onset of his creation.

Thomas Aquinas set this straight when he said: “It is clear that the sin of the fallen angel was an act subsequent to his creation. God saw everything that he had made, and behold, it was very good. The devil and the other demons were created naturally good by God, but they became evil by their own doing.

People believed in guardian angels and theologians supported this belief based on Matthew 18:10 where Jesus said, “In heaven [children’s] angels always behold the face of my Father who is in heaven.” Jerome had said: “Great is the dignity of souls, for each one to have an angel assigned to guard it from its birth.” It was decided that after the original fall of some angels, no longer was it possible that any of the remaining angels could fall, because God had confirmed them in his grace and glory.

"CHRIST HANDING THE KEYS TO ST PETER" PAINTING BY PIETRO PERUGINO
"CHRIST HANDING THE KEYS TO ST PETER" PAINTING BY PIETRO PERUGINO
ORDINATION OF ROMAN CATHOLIC BISHOP
ORDINATION OF ROMAN CATHOLIC BISHOP

THE ROMAN CATHOLIC CHURCH

Now there was a single church of angels and humans, which together were the Body and Bride of Christ.  This was the church of the elect, which had always existed as a reality in the mind of God.  God governed and administrated the entire universe, but the focus of his care was for the well being of this church of the elect. 

This view of the church in the divine scheme made it more important than any individual soul, and made unity of spirit in the Body of Christ essential.  Therefore, any individual in the church must strive for unity and peace.  The church was understood to be the pope, the bishops, the priests, the monks, and the laity.  For the sake of unity, the authority of the Roman Church must be enforced in all churches.  Along with this was required the acknowledgement of the pope as the prince of bishops and heir of the apostles. 

There were some who preferred to see the pope as a brother of the bishops, not as the lord of them.  There were also voices that saw the pope as the successor not of Peter, but of Constantine, because of his power and wealth.  While the chief threat to the apostolic church had always been persecution, now it was hypocrisy, ambition, greed, thievery, and wickedness. About this time is the first record of the Church in Rome referred to as the Harlot of Babylon described in the Apocalypse of John.

People then began to come forward declaring the need for a new spiritual church to replace the existing institutional church.  They did not state that the extant ecclesiastical church was not worthy of respect, just that it was time for it to be superseded by a new form of Christianity. The response of the church in Rome was that the spirituality of Christianity was inseparable from the ecclesiastical institutional church.   

SAINT THOMAS AQUINAS
SAINT THOMAS AQUINAS
ST THOMAS AQUINAS
ST THOMAS AQUINAS
THOMAS AQUINAS IN STAINED GLASS
THOMAS AQUINAS IN STAINED GLASS

ST THOMAS AQUINAS

The towering personage of Christian History in the Thirteenth Century is unquestionably St. Thomas Aquinas.  It was he who clarified the theological concept that God had planned the unfolding of history, in particular the election of His Saints. In his masterpiece Summa Theologica, Thomas Aquinas wrote, “The number of the predestined is said to be certain to God, not only by reason of his knowledge, that is, because he knows how many will be saved—for in this way the number of drops of rain and the number of the sands of the sea are certain to God—but by reason of his election and determination.” 

Thomas Aquinas wrote that there could not be a contradiction between one kind of truth and another.  His special project was to tackle the philosophy of Aristotle. 

Plato had been quite influential in the early church, chiefly with his concepts about the spiritual realm being infinitely more real than the physical.  Aristotle was largely unknown in Christendom before Christians began to trade with Muslims for silk and sugar, and it was the Muslims who introduced Christians to the ideas of Aristotle regarding physics, biology, psychology, and cosmology. Aristotle accepted that physical, sensual reality could be understood through human investigation. 

Thomas Aquinas became a preaching beggar with the Dominicans, to the outrage of his family, who then kidnapped him and locked him up with a prostitute.  Using his time wisely, he spent that time in incarceration writing about logic. Thomas created a new Christian worldview of nature and grace; reason and revelation.  In the view of Thomas, the physical universe is no longer a distraction for the soul, but God’s means of communication with humanity.  Since God created human beings with senses and reason, these were good things, unless they were perverted by sin.  He also invented the limerick. 

Thomas Aquinas was a gigantic man who would prove to be an intellectual giant as well.  As young as age five he would pore over the Bible for hours, and then go out to distribute food to the poor.  His nickname was “Dumb Ox” as he was quiet and seemingly dull witted.  As an adult, Thomas was not only known to be courteous, charming, and comical, but also a devastating debater. 

Thomas wrote this prayer:  O Lord my God, make me submissive without protest, poor without discouragement, chaste without regret, patient without complaint, humble without posturing, cheerful without frivolity, mature without gloom, and quick witted without flippancy

Thomas was blessed to have as his first Dominican teacher, Albertus Magnus, the father of modern science.  Albert soon saw Thomas as the greater man.  Thomas was influential in the acceptance of science—observation, thought, discussion, experimentation—as a subject for Christian universities. 

Thomas Aquinas:  Three things are necessary for the salvation of man: to know what he ought to believe, to know what he ought to desire, and to know what he ought to do.  

A longtime problem that had dogged theologians was: how can a man sin unless he has free will?  Thomas wrote: All time is spread out before God.  He is outside time, so all is the present with him.  In one glance he see what you are doing now, what you did twenty years ago, and what you will be doing twenty years from now.  Yet at every point on that time line, your will is free, just as it is right now

Thomas Aquinas:  To one who has faith, no explanation is necessary. To one without faith, no explanation is possible. 

ROBIN HOOD STATUE IN NOTTINGHAM
ROBIN HOOD STATUE IN NOTTINGHAM

ROBIN HOOD

Court records In England from 1225-1261 show historical evidences of one Robin Hood failing repeatedly to appear for a summons.

Robin and his Merrie Men have proved to have timeless appeal for those who would dream of living according to their own laws; and for those who believe in redistributing wealth by taking from the rich to give to the poor.

TOMB OF EDWARD I "LONGSHANKS" KING OF ENGLAND
TOMB OF EDWARD I "LONGSHANKS" KING OF ENGLAND

EDWARD "LONGSHANKS" I

The English King, Henry III, rebuilt Westminster Abbey in 1245 in the new, soaring Gothic style.  His son, Edward I came to the throne in 1272, after his father had managed to rule in what was the longest reign ever by an English sovereign, but a reign that had also run the Crown’s authority and finances into the ground. 

Edward’s ambition was to unite the island of Britain by conquering Wales and Scotland.  Edward Longshanks, as he was nicknamed, was a tall, lean warrior and every inch a king.  He was brave and organized.  He was called the “Hammer of the Scots” for his long and bloody campaigns against William Wallace and Robert the Bruce.  Edward did conquer Wales, and he was responsible for the construction of the magnificent castles there that we know as Edwardian.  A blot on his record is the expulsion of the Jews from England in 1290.  

MAMLUKS
MAMLUKS

MAMLUKS

The Mamluks were slave soldiers who were purchased as children from the Turkish peoples and raised as vicious fighters.  They rose in rebellion and took over Egypt in the 1260s.  Their leader, was a ruthless red-haired man named Baibers, whose next order of business was to wipe out the remaining Christians in the Middle East.  He slaughtered them and took inordinate pleasure in beheading and mutilating.  He enslaved so many Christian children that the bottom fell out of the slave market.  Comely Christian women disappeared into the harems of Muslim Emirs.  Baibers was unimpeded by honor, gratitude, or mercy.  

POPE CELESTINE V
POPE CELESTINE V

CELESTINE V & BONIFACE VIII

The first pope to voluntarily leave his position of power was Peter the Hermit (Celestine V) in 1292.  Before retiring, he moved the papacy to Naples, and then changed the official language of the church from Latin to Italian.  Celestine avoided the pomp and circumstance that his title afforded him; he lived on nothing more than bread and water; and he began giving the wealth of the church to the poor.  His successor, Boniface VIII, put him in gaol where he died with a nail through his head. 

Boniface was destined to have a harder time exerting his authority than his predecessors did.  The birth of nationalism had changed Europe profoundly.  The first parliaments in England and France taxed the clergy, which outraged Boniface, who issued the proclamation:  “It is absolutely impossible for anyone to be saved without being subject to the Roman pontiff.”  King Philip of France promptly arrested him, and then named his own pope, Clement V. The papacy was moved to Avignon in 1305.  This would spell the end of the medieval papacy. 

JACQUE DE MOLAY WAS THE LAST LEADER OF KNIGHTS TEMPLAR (BURNED AT THE STAKE)
JACQUE DE MOLAY WAS THE LAST LEADER OF KNIGHTS TEMPLAR (BURNED AT THE STAKE)

KNIGHTS TEMPLAR

The Knights Templar had been the most courageous defenders of Christendom.  What had begun as a small band of pilgrim protectors became a secretive multi-national company.  They became rich through extensive land holdings that spanned from Scotland to the Middle East, and were obtained by loaning money to the Crusaders, who used their own property as collateral.  On Friday the 13th of October 1307, King Philip of France had his secret police arrest all of the Knights Templar. He then had them tortured into confessing a variety of different crimes that included amongst others, black magic and sodomy.  In 1312, Pope Clement, a vassal of France, confiscated all of their property.  

MURANO
MURANO

GLASS

Murano is an island in the Venetian lagoon. It was there, in the Thirteenth Century that both transparent glass and silvered mirrors were first created. Transparent glass made the science of optics possible, and Roger Bacon went on to design the first pair of spectacles in 1260. Over the course of the next few centuries, the continent of Europe was transformed by the appearance of clear glass windows and greenhouses in its landscapes. Not to mention, the even more significant changes that accompanied the invention of the microscope, telescope, barometer, and thermometer. The use of spectacles accelerated the spread of learning as elderly monks and scholars began to use them. Windows increased not only the efficiency of indoor work, but the hours available to perform them as well. The mirror had important psychological consequences of its own, as it allowed people to see sharp images of their own faces, which in turn caused the development of a new consciousness. New interest was taken in appearance; hence followed by an innate interest in clothing, hairstyles, and cosmetics.

More by this Author

  • The Second Great Awakening
    84

    The Second Great Awakening ends slavery; Charles Spurgeon, Gypsy Smith, Charles Grandison Finney, Burned Over District, Cane Ridge Camp Meeting, Great Ulster Revival, Seventh Day Adventists, Jamaica

  • The Great Awakening
    102

    The First Great Awakening was a thirty year revival that led to American Independence. It united the colonies for the first time as 75% of colonists participated with George Whitfield leading the way.

  • Women of Fox News
    259

    Laura Ingraham, whom I met once, appears often on Fox News as a political commentator. She is a breast cancer survivor. Laura Ingraham is a bestselling author and the sixth most popular radio talk show host in...


Comments 64 comments

Kaie Arwen profile image

Kaie Arwen 6 years ago

Thank you! I've been waiting for this! What took you so long? ;-)

Kaie


Hello, hello, profile image

Hello, hello, 6 years ago from London, UK

I add my name to the comment above. Thank you for great hub again. I have learned so much.


Amber Allen profile image

Amber Allen 6 years ago

Hi James

Another great hub full of lots of information. It also made me smile because it made me think of the bumper sticker "Don't drive faster than your guardian angel can fly".

Amber


RevLady profile image

RevLady 6 years ago from Lantana, Florida

Thank you James for this synopsis of 13th century Christianity and the key figures. Aquinas angelology response to Augustine was interesting as was being educated about Edward Longshanks and the Mamluks. Good learning experience for me.

Blessings,

Forever His,


partisan patriot 6 years ago

Brilliant and extremely informative; I really enjoy your historical work!


nancy_30 profile image

nancy_30 6 years ago from Georgia

I loved your article. Everything I read of yours is so interesting and informative. I've learned a lot from this article. I can't wait to read the next one.


coffeesnob 6 years ago

James,

i wonder how many would be willing to pray the prayer Thomas Aquinas prayed. As I read through it I found myself stumbling over the thoguht of asking God to make me submissive without protest. I am challenged by reading this. For I know that in my weakness He is made great. Great work here.


Tom Whitworth profile image

Tom Whitworth 6 years ago from Moundsville, WV

James,

Another great hub on the history of Christianity. I was astounded about the existance of historical records of Robin Hood. I always thought he was a purely fictional character.


eovery profile image

eovery 6 years ago from MIddle of the Boondocks of Iowa

Thanks for the history lesson again.

Keep on hubbing!


peacenhim 6 years ago

Most interesting and fascinating. Can always count on your Hubs to be steeped in History and revelation! Thank you for sharing!! peace.


creativeone59 profile image

creativeone59 6 years ago from Gold Canyon, Arizona

James thank you for a very elightening and knowledgeable hub, I enjoyed it emensely. thank you for sharing it.


dohn121 profile image

dohn121 6 years ago from Hudson Valley, New York

I feel like I'm back in college again when I read your hubs on history and Christianity, James! You're a natural educator!


itakins profile image

itakins 6 years ago from Irl

Another great production-what a gift-a personal guardian angel.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago Author

Kaie Arwen--- Thank you for being for first visitor! If I had known you were waiting for it I would have hurried it along. You are welcome.

James


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago Author

Hello, hello,--- You are welcome. It was my pleasure to put this together. I have been waiting for the chance to write about Thomas Aquinas, a truly fascinating man and a blessed soul.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago Author

Amber Allen--- Thank you, Amber. I have not seen that bumper sticker but I like the slogan.

James


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago Author

RevLady--- You're welcome, my dear lady. Longshanks and Robin Hood are a bit out of place here but I couldn't help but mention them out of my own fascination. Aquinas is a real treat. I love him. I could write about him all day.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago Author

partisan patriot--- I am so glad that you do enjoy it. It is a pleasure for me to write. Thank you for visiting and commenting.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago Author

nancy_30--- Thank you! Thank you very much. Reading comments such as yours make it all worthwhile.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago Author

coffeesnob--- I must confess that the prayer of Thomas Aquinas is my favorite part of this Hub. It is a perfect devotional. And challenging, yes. I'll pray it with you. Thank you for coming by to visit.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago Author

Tom Whitworth--- You're not the only one, my friend. When I read about Robin Hood today I was surprised myself. Thank you for your comments.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago Author

eovery--- You're welcome! I'll keep on as long as I'm able. :D


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago Author

peacenhim--- I am glad you found it so. Thank you for reading and leaving word that you did. :)


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago Author

creativeone59--- You are quite welcome, dear. I am so glad you enjoyed it. Thank you for letting me know. :-)


Ann Nonymous profile image

Ann Nonymous 6 years ago from Virginia

Really great hub, James, and should be a success as Angels are always and always have been a fascination to humankind. The Knights Templar.... everything was a very interesting read, and again well done!


carolina muscle profile image

carolina muscle 6 years ago from Charlotte, North Carolina

I always found great irony in the story of Thomas Acquinas.. that 'big dumb ox' whose logic would challenge Aristotle's.


psychicdog.net profile image

psychicdog.net 6 years ago

another great read. Thanks James. I like the way you distil information into fascinating and informative tidbits.


"Quill" 6 years ago

Challenging read James...just a reminder of the importance of our prayer...if we are willing to ask we need to ask ourselves are willing to act...great hub...

Blessings


amillar profile image

amillar 6 years ago from Scotland, UK

We were a rum bunch us Europeans. No wonder so many moved to the New World.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago Author

dohn121--- Thank you, Dohn. I surely enjoy writing teaching Hubs. It gives me pleasure, especially when I get fine feedback from you.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago Author

itakins--- Isn't it though. A guardian angel for each of us. That is a wonderful thing to contemplate. Thank you for reading and leaving your comments.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago Author

Ann Nonymous--- Thank you for your kind compliments. Yes, angels are fascinating and the Knights Templar are also very interesting. Either could be a Hub unto itself. I'm glad you enjoyed it.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago Author

carolina muscle--- Yes, the "Dumb Ox" was brilliant. I could easily write a Hub solely about him. Thanks for taking the time to read my article and letting me know you were here.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago Author

psychicdog.net--- Thank you and you are welcome. Distillation. I like that. Learning for a short attention span generation. :D Perhaps.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago Author

"Quill"--- My grandmother used to tell me that Prayer was the keynote to heaven. I agree with her and with you. Thank you for visiting my Hub and leaving your words here.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago Author

amillar--- Ha! You are a witty man. Thanks for coming by and sharing that with us.


Angela Blair profile image

Angela Blair 6 years ago from Central Texas

James - again I stand amazed at your research and your writing. I didn't realize how "uninformed" I was until I began reading your series. Thank you so very much. Best, Sis


JannyC profile image

JannyC 6 years ago

Excellent hub. Once again found it informative and fun. The best way to learn. Love expanding knowledge and history.


lorlie6 profile image

lorlie6 6 years ago from Bishop, Ca

Fantastic Hub brimming with valuable information. Thank you James!


sheila b. profile image

sheila b. 6 years ago

I appreciate the study you did to write this. I'll bet you have more information, and could write more on the various subjects. First you learn, then you teach, OK?


caretakerray profile image

caretakerray 6 years ago from Michigan U.S.A.

James A Watkins:

Great as usual. A very informative hub. I look forward to reading the whole series. Thanx. :)

caretakerray


cristina327 profile image

cristina327 6 years ago from Manila

Indeed another excellent hub from you James. This hub indeed has a great wealth of information.Thank you for sharing here at Hubpages.Remain blessed always.


rls8994 profile image

rls8994 6 years ago from Mississippi

You are a talented writer and teacher. Your

hubs are always so informative and interesting.

The study of Angels and there watch over us

is so interesting to me.


"Quill" 6 years ago

Hi James...well written as always, it teaches, it enlightens and it informs all who read, you are a blessing Brother.

Blessings


heather56 6 years ago

Quite interesting. I look forward to reading your other hubs on Christianity and history.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago Author

Angela Blair--- You are welcome, Sis. I am grateful to you for writing to me so graciously. Thank you for reading my work.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago Author

JannyC--- Thank you very much. I am glad it was informative and fun for you. Your remarks make it all worthwhile. :)


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago Author

lorlie6--- You are welcome. This Hub was fun to put together. I am well pleased that you enjoyed reading it. :-)


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago Author

sheila b.--- OK! Yes, my research did yield maybe twenty times this much material. I did my best to truncate it down to bite sized pieces so it wouldn't be too boring to casual readers. Thank you for reading and for leaving your fine comments.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago Author

craretakerray--- You are welcome. Thank you for your kind compliments and for taking the time to read my article.

James


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago Author

cristina327--- What a pleasure to hear from you again, my dear. I appreciate the lovely words you left here for me to read. You are most welcome, too. :D


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago Author

rls8994--- I am also fascinated by angels. In fact, I may write a Hub just about them. Thank you so much for the nice things you said in your comments. I appreciate it.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago Author

"Quill"--- Hello there, my friend. It's nice to see you here. You are one fine, uplifting, and inspiring writer in your own right. So, I appreciate your gracious words to me here.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago Author

heather56--- I hope you do have the time to read some of the others. I still have a ways to go to finish this set. I'll try to do one more next weekend. Thanks for coming by.


Pamela99 profile image

Pamela99 6 years ago from United States

James, Your educational hubs are great. I feel like I need to read them more than once, just like when I was in college to glean all the facts. St. Thomas Aquinas was a very interesting person. Thanks for all your hard work.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago Author

Pamela99--- It's always a treat to hear from you, dear. Thank you for reading my words and for your gracious compliments. You are surely welcome.


prettydarkhorse profile image

prettydarkhorse 6 years ago from US

I am truly a fan of "Dumb Ox", thank you Sir for this beautiful part of history, and for "The Knights of Templar" discussion, great writing again, Maita


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago Author

prettydarkhorse--- Me, too! I love the "Dumb Ox." You are welcome and I thank you for your kind compliments.


The Donkey profile image

The Donkey 6 years ago from Little Rock, Arkansas

This was pretty interesting. Great job.

You should follow me and read some of my hubs.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago Author

The Donkey--- Thank you. I appreciate the visit and comments. I will follow you and read some of your Hubs.


stars439 profile image

stars439 6 years ago from Louisiana, The Magnolia and Pelican State.

Really enjoyed this work about angels, and it is always and endless learning experience reading your wonderful skillfull work. Fantastic photographs, and interesting people from early times. God Bless You.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago Author

stars439— I enjoyed researching and writing about angels, too. And I enjoyed reading your laudatory remarks about my work. I am grateful that you read my work and left me such nice comments.


Hannah David Cini profile image

Hannah David Cini 21 months ago from Nottingham

I really enjoyed this, especially the focus on Thomas Aquinas. A great article.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 months ago from Chicago Author

Hannah David Cini~ Thank you! Thank you very much.

    Sign in or sign up and post using a HubPages Network account.

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No HTML is allowed in comments, but URLs will be hyperlinked. Comments are not for promoting your articles or other sites.


    Click to Rate This Article
    working