The republication, with a substantial new afterward, of Rowan Williams's Arius should be welcomed by the thoughtful Christian public for several reasons. First, at the time of writing, Williams is one of the main contenders for the vacancy at Lambeth Palace and may well be the head of the Anglican communion by the time this goes to press. As such, he stands on the brink of being one of the most significant worldwide church leaders of the next decades; his writings, thus, have more than mere scholarly significance, and Arius, as his masterpiece, must form a central part of any assessment of the man. Second, the work is itself perhaps the single most detailed and rigorous analysis of the thought of Arius, "the archetypal heretic," ever to have been written. For those who have ploughed through R. P. C. Hanson's The Search for the Christian Doctrine of God (T&T Clark, Ltd., 2000) and been left with the feeling that the way in which orthodoxy emerged in the early church was immensely complicated, then Williams's book is bad news, demonstrating that even Hanson's account makes things more straightforward than they really were.
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Issue: "Lift Up Your Voice" Nov./Dec. 2002 Vol. 11 No. 6 Page number(s): 50-51
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