The pneumatology of St Irenaeus of Lyons
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This thesis attempts to construct a systematic Irenaean Pneumatology, making a contribution in the history of dogma. The aim of this thesis is to develop a theological system, based on the Irenaean writings, that demonstrates that the area of Pneumatology was one of the central constructs in Irenaeus' thought. The methods employed in this thesis are: An evaluation of the data available in the context of Irenaeus' premise in the light of Scripture's presentation; a detailed analysis of literary contributions on the subject; and a research of the patristic thought and how other Church Fathers have identified and interpreted the Spirit's involvement in its development. This thesis compares Irenaeus' pneumatological writings with biblical and patristic texts, and presents the opinions of various Ireanaean scholars, offering either positive comments or academic disagreements on these opinions. Irenaeus' pneumatological thought is presented and evaluated in five particular chapters: The creation and spiritual destiny of humanity; the fall of humanity; the spiritual redemption of humanity; the Church and the Holy Spirit; and eschatology and the Holy Spirit. The final conclusion of the thesis is that the person and the work of the Holy Spirit governed Irenaeus' understanding of most -if not all- other theological concepts.
- Theology