Saint Irenaeus

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Saint Irenaeus, Bishop of Lugdunum in Gaul aka Lyon

Greek / Roman in France @ 125 - 202 CE

Comments: Christian opposed to the Gnostics; "until the discovery of the Library of Nag Hammadi in 1945, Against Heresies was the best-surviving description of Gnosticism"; God is good and ONE, not divided into a good and bad deity; first of the church fathers to consider the mystic number 666 ; martyred @202 CE; "the Irenaean theodicy asserts that the world is the best of all possible worlds because it allows humans to fully develop"; Greek community of Christians after a massacre ;


Teachers: Jesus; St. Paul the Apostle; Basilides; Polycarp (69 – 155); Pope Clement I; Ignatius of Antioch ; Pope Eleuterus; Saint Pothinus; Pope Victor I;

Students: Eusebius; Rodney Stark; Hippolytus ; Tertullian; John Keble, translator; Ambrose of Milan; Hans Jonas; Tobias Churton;

Friends:

Enemies: Valentinus; Zoroaster ; Marcus Aurelius; 'Magus the Magician' in the Rhone valley; who may be Simon Magus; Elaine Pagels ; Eleutherus, Bishop of Rome; Montanus aka the Paraclete aka the Holy Spirit and his two Priestesses, Priscilla and Maximilla; Marcion, who felt only Jews could become Christians after becoming Good Jews;


Organizations: Catholic Church

Author: Adversus Haereses or Against Heresies aka aka A Refutation and Subversion of Knowledge Falsely So Called, 5 vols @ 180, (against Gnosticism); The Demonstration of the Apostolic Preaching; lost works On the Ogdoad; an untitled letter to Blastus regarding schism; On the Subject of Knowledge; On the Monarchy or How God is not the Cause of Evil;


Resources: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Irenaeus; http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Irenaean_theodicy ; http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/shows/religion/story/emergence.html; http://www.bartleby.com/210/6/281.html ; read his anti -Gnostic treaties here - http://www.earlychristianwritings.com/irenaeus.html ; or listen to his rant - http://librivox.org/against-heresies-by-irenaeus/ ; The Gnostics, by Tobias Churton, 1987;