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'''Adoptionism''' is a form of the [[heresy]] of [[Monarchianism]] that appeared in varying forms in the second and third centuries and then again in the eighth and twelfth centuries in the West. The Christological view held was that Jesus was born human and became divine later during his baptism and thus was ''adopted'' as the son of God. This form of the heresy differs from [[Modalism]], the other form of Monarchianism, in which the “Father” and the “Son” are two aspects of the same subject. The adoptionism heresy revived again in the West during the eighth century by the bishops of Toledo and Urgell. It again appeared during the twelfth century in France as ''Neo-Adoptionism''.
The adoptionistic idea may have had its origin within the first century after Christ, but the oldest extant work that expressed the idea, ''Shepherd of Hermas'', appeared in the second century. In this work the Redeemer, Jesus, was thought to be a virtuous man, chosen by God, who was united with the Spirit of God and did works as God commanded. Jesus, thus, was adopted as Son by divine decree. This then denied the preexistence of Christ. In this form the heresy continued during the second and third centuries.
In the twelfth century, Peter Abelard, in France, preached a variation of the heresy called ''Neo-adoptionism'' that, along with later variations, was based on erroneous understandings of the hypostatical union.
*[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Adoptionism Wikipedia: Adoptionism]
*[http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/01150a.htm Catholic Encylopedia: Adoptionism]