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Catholic Dictionary




The system of Church-State relations named after Thomas Erastus (1524-83), who was a follower of Huldreich Zwingli (1484-1531) and whose real name was Thomas Lieber. Its main thesis is the supremacy of civil rulers in matters of religion. The basis for this theory is the alleged analogy between the Jewish and the Christian dispensations. Erastianism became the theological justification for the established churches in England and elsewhere.