First Doctrinal Breaks

The first doctrinal breaks in the unity of the Christian church occurred in the fifth century after debates concerning the divinity of Christ. The Council of Ephesus (431) condemned Nestorius, the archbishop of Constantinople, for teaching that there were two persons in Christ: the divine and the human. The church in what was then the Sassanid Empire (now Iraq and Iran) separated from the western churches of Rome and Constantinople after the Council of Ephesus. Today it is known as the Assyrian Church of the East. This "Church of the East" was immensely successful in its mission and by the seventh century had spread to China and Japan.

Similarly, in 451 the Council of Chal-cedon condemned the Monophysites, a christian beliefs

Probably the oldest and simplest creedal statement is the Apostles' Creed, developed in the first and second centuries and first recorded in 390.

I believe in God, the Father Almighty, creator of heaven and earth.

I believe in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord.

He was conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit and born of the Virgin Mary.

He suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died and was buried.

He descended to the dead.

On the third day he rose again.

He ascended into heaven, and is seated at the right hand of the Father. He will come again to judge the living and the dead.

I believe in the Holy Spirit, the Holy Catholic Church, the communion of the Saints, the forgiveness of sins, and the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting.

group that believed that there was only the divine nature in Christ. The "Monoph-ysite" churches of Armenia, Syria, Egypt, Ethiopia, and India, known today as the Oriental Orthodox Churches, broke away from the Orthodox churches after the Council of Chalcedon.

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