Two Kingdom Theology

Hosius, bishop of Cordova, to emperor Constantius, 355 AD

Intrude not yourself into Ecclesiastical matters, neither give commands unto us concerning them; but learn them from us. God has put into your hands the kingdom; to us He has entrusted the affairs of His Church; and as he who would steal the empire from you would resist the ordinance of God, so likewise fear on your part lest by taking upon yourself the government of the Church, you become guilty of a great offence. It is written, “Render unto Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and unto God the things that are God’s (Matt.22.21) .” Neither therefore is it permitted unto us to exercise an earthly rule, nor have you, Sire, any authority to burn incense

Hosius would not accept Arians as fellow Christians even if an emperor commanded it. Hosius recognised this command is beyond the remit of lawful secular government.

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