Questions tagged [origin]

Questions about the origins of beliefs, concepts, and terminology

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20
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2answers
3k views

What is the origin of the moral-civil-ceremonial distinction of the Old Testament law?

This distinction is often called tripartite division of the law. I ran across this series of blog posts, which considers the division of the law into "moral", "civil", and "ceremonial" parts: ...
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4answers
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What is the origin of the idea that Michael is Jesus?

I recently came across the idea of identifying the angel Michael as Jesus. I'm surprised I hadn't heard it before. Wikipedia documents it as common to Seventh Day Adventists and Jehovah's Witnesses. I'...
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2answers
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What is the source of the belief that the deceased become angels?

An associate wrote an open letter (email) of condolence to a friend who'd lost a child. The letter stated that that deceased was now an angel in heaven with wings. What is the ultimate source of this ...
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2answers
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How old is old earth creationism?

The answers to What is the biblical evidence for an old Earth? say that biblical arguments for old Earth creationism are based on the ambiguous words used for describing lengths of time in Genesis. ...
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2answers
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When did Christianity originate?

How long has Christianity been around? Not how or why -- just when did it start: As a religion? As a name?
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3answers
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What do Protestants say was the source for the doctrine of the perpetual virginity of Mary?

Not counting Martin Luther, who appears to have believed in the doctrine of the Perpetual Virginity of Mary, what do other Protestants think is the source and reason for Catholic adherence to the ...
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5answers
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Where does the belief that the Earth is relatively young (6000 years) come from?

Some christians believe the Earth is only 6000 to 12,000 years old. Where does this age originate from?
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2answers
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Swear to tell the truth 'so help me God'?

I know that in court if you don't believe in God you are allowed to simply give an "Affirmation" instead of an Oath. But what I want to know is why any Christian would swear an Oath to tell the truth "...
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3answers
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What is the origin of the Good Friday tradition?

As suggested by this question and this answer, it seems possible that Jesus actually died on a Wednesday, not on a Friday. In light of these competing theories, what is the origin of the Good Friday ...
21
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1answer
484 views

When in the development of trinitarian doctrine was the word “persons” first applied to God?

In the Bible, the word "persons" is not used in reference to God, nor are the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit called "persons." When, in early Christian writings and creeds, was the word "persons" (...
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7answers
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How old is the idea of premillenial rapture?

Wikipedia claims that the doctrine of rapture was first formed in the 17th century: The concept of the Rapture, in connection with premillennialism, was expressed by the 17th-century American ...
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6answers
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What is the history of the concept of a “personal relationship with Jesus”?

It is common these days to hear questions like: Do you have a personal relationship with Jesus? Or... The most important thing is your personal relationship with Jesus. The Bible never uses ...
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1answer
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Origin of the Reformed “Marks of the True Church”

In Reformed Theology, "the marks of a true church" are often delineated, to the effect of: Church discipline Teaching/preaching Administration of the sacraments (These are the marks often denoted in ...
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2answers
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Origin of the story that James had knees as hard as a camel's, because of praying

I'm reading John Pollock's "The Apostle - A Life Of Paul" and, at page 85 of the 1969 print, he states that James was a man of such devotion that long praying had made his knees as hard as camel's,...
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3answers
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What is the history of the doctrine of inerrancy?

Is there any reason, biblical or otherwise, not to believe that the doctrine of inerrancy is relatively new (past two hundred years). I found the following statement on Wikipedia. "It has in fact ...
10
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1answer
594 views

When and where does the statement, “Christ paid the penalty for our sins” first appear?

The statement, "Christ paid the penalty for our sins" does not appear in the Bible. When in the history of Christian theology did this specific statement first appear? Who said it? Please provide ...
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3answers
843 views

What is the earliest explicit mention of infant baptism?

The Bible describes several adults being baptized (notably Jesus and the Ethiopian eunuch that Phillip baptized). And while it mentions many others being baptized, it doesn't explicitly mention ...
18
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1answer
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What is the origin of holding hands when praying around a circle before a meal?

My impression is that, among many Christians, people around a table saying a prayer thanking Jesus for a meal hold hands with one another. What is the origin of this practice, and are there any ...
17
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7answers
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Why is the number 666 considered evil?

People always make jokes about the number 666 and how it's evil and such. What is the basis of this?
11
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2answers
476 views

When and how was the doctrine of the one divine will established?

Many (perhaps most) Trinitarian theologians says that the Father, Son, and Spirit each possess the one singular divine will. This is a stronger statement than saying they are "united in will", which ...
8
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2answers
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What is the origin of the idea that the baby Jesus did not cry?

"...the cattle are lowing. The baby awakes. But little Lord Jesus, no crying he makes." ~ 2nd verse to Away In A Manger Did this idea originate from historical Christian doctrine? Where did this ...
16
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1answer
545 views

What is the earliest known instance of a petition directed to Mary?

A recent answer on this site says that "People have always prayed to Mary as a chief intercessor on their behalf." Such a statement will surely seem excessive to Protestants, who would normally ...
13
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3answers
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What is the origin of the belief that Satan tortures the unsaved in Hell?

There's a thought that Satan (the devil) tortures the unsaved in Hell. For example, a brief search revealed a website wherein a member posted the following: I think of Satan more of a psycopath ...
11
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2answers
654 views

When was Sunday first called the Sabbath?

I am looking for the first extant record of Sunday being referred to specifically as the "Sabbath" or "Christian Sabbath" I am not asking which day the early church gathered. I am not asking which ...
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3answers
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Where did the religious symbol of the 'halo' come from?

I once read somewhere that the 'halo' was inherited by Christianity from ancient worshippers of the Sun.  However, although this seems believable I never bothered to verify its historic credibility - ...
6
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2answers
332 views

What is the first recorded observation of Good Friday?

When was the first Good Friday commemoration observed, distinct from Pascha/Passover or Sunday Easter? Related: What is the origin of the Good Friday tradition? However, I am not interested in ...
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1answer
2k views

What is the origin of the Catechism of the Catholic Church?

How old is the Catechism of the Catholic Church, and in what manner was it conceived and instituted?
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1answer
295 views

Perseverance of the Saints – Historical Interpretations before Calvin

When I read the writings of early Christians I am constantly seeing references to persevering to the end and absolutely nothing resembling this teaching. It is almost as if everything taught prior to ...
15
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1answer
571 views

What are the first references to a tradition of fasting before partaking of the Lord's Supper?

I recently learned that in Roman Catholicism, it's expected that partakers of the Eucharist will fast for at least an hour. Canon 919, §1 reads: A person who is to receive the Most Holy Eucharist ...
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1answer
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When was the word “trinity” first applied to God in Christianity?

The word "trinity" does not occur in the Bible. When, in early Christian writings and creeds, was the word "trinity" first used in reference to God? After that first (known) occurrence, what are ...
11
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3answers
344 views

What is the historical origin of the “Last Supper” expression?

This is not a question about the meaning (self-explanatory) of the expression, but on its origin. In particular, about who, where, and when. There seems to be nothing about this around. The New ...
11
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3answers
887 views

Does the Protestant Bible mention Satan punishing non-believers after death?

I have always heard people say that when you die and haven't accepted Christ and go to hell, that you're going to be punished by Satan, and we have this great plethora of contemporary culture showing ...
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2answers
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What is the origin of the story of the penitent thief as a young boy?

During the Easter sermon our priest told a small story. It goes somewhat like this: 'When Joseph, Mary and baby Jesus fled to Egypt, on the way there was a little boy who was given the task of ...
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3answers
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Adam and Eve Clothed in Light Before the Fall - Origin of Teaching?

I've stumbled multiple times across the claim that Adam and Eve were clothed in light before the fall, and afterward they saw their nakedess not merely as a new form of enlightenment ("Suddenly I feel ...
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2answers
211 views

When did the idea of a scriptural “canon” originate?

This question What are the biblical arguments that the Bible canon is NOT closed? made me wonder: 1) When did the idea of a canon originate? I would suppose this should be quite early, and Jews ...
6
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3answers
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When did sin and evil in the universe first appear?

According to Catholicism and Protestantism (I am not aware of any division over this) When did evil in the universe first appear and what was the originating cause of it? Note: I mean the immediate ...
6
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1answer
113 views

What is the origin of the term Prima Scriptura and the background against which it was defined?

Prima Scriptura is the doctrine that canonized scripture is "first" or "above all" other sources of divine revelation. Implicitly, this view acknowledges that, besides canonical scripture, there ...