The Roots of Christogenesis

Christogenesis: The Development of Teilhard's Cosmic Christology

The cosmic Christ is a view of Christology which emphasizes the extent of Jesus Christ's concern for the cosmos. The biblical bases for a cosmic Christology is often found in Colossians, Ephesians, and the prologue to the gospel of John.

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

Irenaeus (c. 130 – c. 202 AD) offered one of the earliest articulations of a cosmic Christology in his Against Heresies. In his theory of atonement, Irenaeus speaks about how all of humanity was created good but tainted by sin, but all creation was "recapitulated" and restored under the new headship of Christ. This "cosmic" Christology would be a dominant view throughout much of the patristic period, as well as within Eastern Christianity, while alternative positions began to arise during the medieval period.

In Christianity, Christology, translated literally from Greek as "the study of Christ", is a branch of theology that concerns Jesus. Different denominations have different opinions on questions like whether Jesus was human, divine, or both, and as a messiah what his role would be in the freeing of the Jewish people from foreign rulers or in the prophesied Kingdom of God, and in the salvation from what would otherwise be the consequences of sin.

The earliest Christian writings gave several titles to Jesus, such as Son of Man, Son of God, Messiah, and Kyrios, which were all derived from the Hebrew scriptures. These terms are centred around two opposing themes, namely "Jesus as a preexistent figure who becomes human and then returns to God", versus adoptionism – that Jesus was human and was "adopted" by God at his baptism, crucifixion, or resurrection.

From the second to the fifth centuries, the relation between the human and divine nature of Christ was a major focus of debates in the early church and at the first seven ecumenical councils. The Council of Chalcedon in 451 issued a formulation of the hypostatic union of the two natures of Christ, one human and one divine, "united with neither confusion nor division". Most of the major branches of Western Christianity and Eastern Orthodoxy subscribe to this formulation, while many branches of Oriental Orthodox Churches reject it, subscribing to miaphysitism.

Georges Lemaître 

John 1:1 is the first verse in the opening chapter of the Gospel of John in the New Testament of the Christian Bible. The traditional and majority translation of this verse reads:

In the beginning, was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

The verse has been a source of much debate among Bible scholars and translators.

"The Word," a translation of the Greek λόγος (logos), is widely interpreted as referring to Jesus, as indicated in other verses later in the same chapter. For example, “the Word became flesh and dwelt among us” (John 1:14; cf. 1:15, 17).

This and other concepts in the Johannine literature set the stage for the Logos-Christology in which the Apologists of the second and third centuries connected the divine Word of John 1:1-5 to the Hebrew Wisdom literature and the divine Logos of contemporary Greek philosophy.

Basis of John 1:1, Tertullian, early in the third century, argued for two Gods where the Persons are distinct but the substance is undivided. But Tertullian saw the Word as ontologically inferior because He is only “a portion of the Whole.”

In John 1:1c, logos has the article but theos does not. Origen of Alexandria, a teacher in Greek grammar of the third century, argued that John uses the article when theos refers to "the uncreated cause of all things." But the Logos is named theos without the article because He participates in the divinity of the Father because of “His being with the Father.”

The main dispute with respect to this verse relates to John 1:1c (“the Word was God”). One minority translation is "the Word was divine." This is based on the argument that the grammatical structure of the Greek does not identify the Word as the Person of God but indicates a qualitative sense. The point being made is that the Logos is of the same uncreated nature or essence as God the Father. In that case, “the Word was God” may be misleading because, in normal English, "God" is a proper noun, referring to the person of the Father or corporately to the three persons of the Godhead.

Albert Einstein

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin SJ; 1 May 1881 – 10 April 1955) was a French Jesuit priest, scientist, paleontologist, theologian, philosopher and teacher. He was Darwinian in outlook and the author of several influential theological and philosophical books.

He took part in the discovery of Peking Man. He conceived the vitalist idea of the Omega Point. With Vladimir Vernadsky, he developed the concept of the noosphere.

In 1962, the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith condemned several of Teilhard's works based on their alleged ambiguities and doctrinal errors. Some eminent Catholic figures, including Pope Benedict XVI and Pope Francis, have made positive comments on some of his ideas since. The response to his writings by scientists has been mostly critical.

Teilhard served in World War I as a stretcher-bearer. He received several citations and was awarded the Médaille militaire and the Legion of Honor, the highest French order of merit, both military and civil.

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