Origen was an Alexandrian theologian and lived between 185-254. Origen towers above the other thinkers of the third century. Born in Egypt of Christian parents, he received a sound education at home, later studying under Clement of Alexandria. When he was only 18 Origen's father perished in Alexandria during the time of Severus in the persecution of 202, and Origen, in his adolescent ardor, desiring to share his fate, was kept from it only by the resourceful action of his mother in hiding his clothes. Profoundly shaken by the death of his father, Origen thereafter led an ascetic life. Suffering was certainly his lot.

In Origen, the Christian church finally produced a systematic thinker whom the non-Christian philosophers of his time took seriously. Unfortunately, he made mistakes that are still with us today. He wrote the book "The First Principles". After Origen's death the Orthodox Church suppressed the book because of its unconventional ideas, but it was a key work in the development of Christian doctrine. While God the Father and God the Son are at work in all created beings, the saints alone share in God the Holy Spirit. Origen teaches a system of divine justice that includes the transmigration of souls as part of the education of all creatures.

More than a great teacher; Origen was also on fire for the Christian faith. He directed the school of Alexandria for about 27 years. The aim of the School of Alexandria was to reconcile the philosophy of Plato with Christian teaching. Origen, perhaps the most influential of all the theologians of the ancient church, began to present the kingdom as an event which would take place not in space or time but only in the souls of believers. For a collective, millennial eschatology Origen substituted an eschatology of the individual soul. Aquinas - Origen said that Christ was born and came into the world to save even the devils, and, therefore, at the end of the world all the demons will be saved... contrary to scripture.

At the age of 65 Origen was caught in the persecution under Decius, imprisoned, tortured and dying soon afterward in prison. He was possessed of a genius so rare that he was a pioneer, and in this difficult affair of interpreting Christian teaching to the non-Christian world he had to construct his own technical language. Origen was a pioneer and came up with so many profound truths that he fell into immense errors on important points. Although he was never officially censured in his lifetime he was indeed a man of saintly life, and he died a confessor for the faith after enduring fearful tortures. It was only in later years that his writings caused so many controversies.
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