Athanasius convened the first Synod of Nicaea in 325 A.D, the first Ecumenical meeting of the Catholic Church, under Constantine, whose own conversion elevated an heretofore obscure persecuted cult to an empire-spanning faith propagated under a Pax Romana.
Opening the synod Athanasius declared:
‘God became man in order that man becomes God’.
This seminal idea was later elaborated in mythic language by the Kabbalah of the Sephardic Jews, and is at the core of denouement in every mystical parallel of Abrahamic Religions.
Athanasius’ proclamation was a provocatively incorrect stance for a man of the Church. He was not granted an easy passage. A charged debate ensued and it was finally [but not unanimously] agreed that a new major doctrine that ironed out various conflicting minor anomalies was indeed needed.
And the new doctrine said:‘Christ was of one substance with the Father’.
Jesus is not just a historical [Yeshua, Lesus, Joshua] or mythical [Mashiah, Kristos, Christ] figure. Jesus is not even a simple idea. Jesus in fact, is a defiant contradiction. For ‘Jesus’, it said: ‘is both God and Man.’
The Creed of Nicaea was the first uniform statement of doctrine for the Catholic Church. Much of the mountainous pile of later theological writing focused on making sensible this and other irritating antinomies that kept erupting, sneaking their way past the stern guards stationed at the door of orderly Church interpretation.
Naturally, this leads to even greater absurdity: ‘How many angels can dance on the head of a pin?’
To be a True Christian is to be able to ride that contradiction and allow it to take you where it will.
Or else you can blink, look away and pretend it was all an error. A moment of dulled vision from ancient men not blessed with the arching insights of the modern age.