逾越节:消失的真理

逾越节分歧的起始

使徒们均离世后,初代教会分裂成了东方教会与西方教会。东方教会为位于小亚细亚的君士坦丁堡牧首所管理,西方教会则由罗马教皇掌管。

在当时,东西方教会在不同的日期举行饼和葡萄酒的圣餐仪式。

1) 东方教会:在逾越节举行圣餐

东方教会在圣历1月14日举行逾越节圣餐仪式,与圣经的教导一致。

“We,” said he, “therfore, observe the genuine day ; neither adding thereto nor taking therefrom.

Figure 1. The Eastern Churches followed strictly the teaching of Jesus Christ, as shown in the “Eusebius’ Ecclesiastical History”2)

除逾越节外,东方教会也在除酵节(圣历1月15日)后的第一个星期日遵守复活节。

2) 西方教会:在复活节举行圣餐仪式

另一方面,西方教会却并不在逾越节举行圣晚餐仪式,而在逾越节后的星期日(即复活节)举行,由此混淆了这两个节期。

然而在圣经中,我们可以清楚看到这两个节期的意义存在着明确的区别:逾越节的意义是纪念基督的死(哥林多前书11:26),而复活节则是纪念基督的复活。

这种不一致导致来往于东西教会的基督徒看到两地迥异的做法后产生了许多困惑。

…But a difference had arisen between East and West. In Asia the all-important date was the 14th Nisan, … and then celebrate the Eucharist. In the West, however, the fast was maintained until the Sunday following the 14th Nisan and then only was the paschal Eucharist celebrated.

Figure 2. The differing practices of the Eastern and Western Churches, as recorded in the book “A History of the Early Church to A.D. 500″3)

逾越节的论争

1) 第一次逾越节论争

公元155年左右,(东方)士每拿教会的主教波旅甲和(西方)罗马教会的主教安尼克托就逾越节进行了一次论争。波旅甲强调逾越节是耶稣遗留下来的传统,并且自己与十二门徒之一的约翰以及其他众多使徒每年都遵守逾越节。然而,双方未能达成共识。

In 155 Polycarp argued the question with Pope Anicetus, but as neither could persuade the other they agreed to differ.

Figure 3. The evidence of the first controversy between the Eastern and Western Churches, recorded in the book “A History of the Early Church to A.D. 500″4) 

2) 第二次逾越节论争

之后在公元197年左右,罗马主教维克多主张教会应按照罗马的规矩在复活节举行圣餐仪式,而不是在逾越节。维克多将此称为“多米尼加规则(主的规则)”并强迫众教会接受,以此引发了第二次的逾越节论争。论争的结果是西方的众教会同意遵守这一规则,而东方教会则强烈反对。以弗所教会的主教波利克拉底在写给维克多的信件中语气强烈地强调应当遵守逾越节。

All these observed the fourteenth day of the passover according to the gospel, deviating in no respect, but following the rule of faith. Moreover, I, Polycrates, who am the least of all of you, according to the tradition of my relatives, some of whom I have followed. For there ware seven, my relatives bishops, and I am the eighth; and my relatives always observed the day when the people (i. e. the Jews) threw away the leaven. I, therefore, brethren, am now sixty-five years in the Lord, who having conferred with the brethren throughout the world, and having studied the whole of the sacred Scriptures, am not at all alarmed at those things with which I am threatened, to intimidate me. For they who are greater I, have said, ‘we ought to obey God rather than men’”

Figure 4. Bishop Polycrates’ letter to Bishop Victor regarding the keeping of the Passover at the correct time, as shown in the “Eusebius’ Ecclesiastical History”5)

收到信件的维克多认为亚细亚教会异于正统而欲开除他们的教籍,但因周围众多教会的极力劝阻而作罢。

Upon this, Victor, the bishop of the church of Rome, forthwith endeavoured to cut off the churches of all Asia, together with the neighbouring churches, as heterodox, from the common unity. And he publishes abroad by letters, and proclaims, that all the brethren there are wholly excommunicated. But this was not the opinion of all the bishops.

Figure 5. Bishop Victor’s attempt to excommunicate churches which kept the Passover, in “Eusebius’ Ecclesiastical History”6)

A more important stage of the controversy took place in 197 at Rome. There thr Pope Victor, a men of much more dominating temper than Anicetus, determined to put a stop to all confusion and to compel the whole Church to accept the Dominical rule, i.e. observe the feast on the Sunday. Conferences were held at various places in East and West, with the result that the Dominical rule was accepted every where except in Asia. Vitor thereupon pursued his advantage and excommunicated the recalcitrant churches. This, however, raised a storm of protest.

Figure 6. Recordings of the Dominical Rule and further controversy on keeping the Passover in the book “A History of the Early Church to A.D. 500″7)

逾越节被废除

1) 尼西亚宗教会议

公元四世纪,逾越节论争的火苗再次被点燃。最终,逾越节在公元325年召开的尼西亚宗教会议上被废除。由罗马皇帝君士坦丁主持的尼西亚宗教会议站在了西方教会一边废除了逾越节,并将圣餐定在了复活节。

The Eastern and Western segments of the Church could not arrive at any agreement until the Council of Nicaea in 325, when the viewpoint of the Western Church was adopted.

Figure 7. The Council of Nicaea decided in favour of the Western Church, recorded in “Christianity Through the Centuries”8)

At the Council of Nicea, in 325, Church authorities agreed to abolish the Divine appointed festival of Passover and replace in with what Constantine called “the more legitimate feastival of Easter”.

Figure 8. Passover was officially abolished at the Council of Nicaea in A.D. 325, recorded in “Faith of the Ages: The Hebraic Roots of the Christian Faith”9)

随着逾越节(除酵节)被废除,复活节的日期也无法以圣经的基准来决定。会议在决定废除逾越节的同时,决定在春分满月后的第一个星期天遵守复活节。而该主张的借口则是按照月亮的运行轨迹制定节期的日期太过困难。

此外,早已被多神教传统和思想污染的罗马教会引入了伊斯特尔(Easter)节来纪念耶稣的复活。该节日起源于敬拜春之女神约斯特雷(Eostre)的节日。在北欧地区,人们每年会在春分庆祝这个节日。

会议的决定对基督教造成了严重的影响。拒绝服从罗马教会的权威而坚持在1月14日遵守逾越节的教会被当做异端遭到迫害。许多圣徒为了持守信仰被迫迁移到旷野或洞穴中。

直到公元325年的尼西亚宗教会议为止,西方教会虽不遵守逾越节,却依然在逾越节之后的星期天遵守复活节。换句话说,东西方教会都以逾越节作为复活节日期的基准。然而,随着在尼西亚宗教会议上决议将春分作为复活节日期的基准,逾越节的意义彻底消失了。

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