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Ecclesiastical Charges Against Montanism Ca. 165–324 C.E

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Chapter Summary

'Catholics' and 'Montanists' disagreed about a wide variety of topics ranging from the wearing of veils to Trinitarian theology. Numerous complaints, accusations, or charges were leveled at the adherents of the New Prophecy by their pre-Constantinian ecclesiastical opponents. Some of these accusations were substantive; others trivial. Some charges were applicable to all Montanists; others reflected purely local disagreements. Each individual charge or accusation may be classified as being a specific example of one of three major complaints which the 'orthodox' repeated endlessly in various forms: (1) 'Montanism' was a pseudo-prophecy; (2) 'Montanism' introduced novelties not commanded by Christ or the apostles; (3) 'Montanism' taught heretical doctrines. This chapter discusses and analyzes all the known anti-Montanist charges from the period before Constantine became sole emperor of the Roman Empire in 324. The anti-Montanist charges give a fairly clear picture of Montanism as seen through the eyes of pre-Constantinian clergy.

Keywords: anti-Montanist charges; Catholics; Montanism; New Prophecy; pre-Constantinian ecclesiastical opponents; pseudo-prophecy; Roman Empire; Trinitarian theology



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