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Biblical Church History

Biblical Church History

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Biblical Church History

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  1. Biblical Church History Following the Hand of God and the Hand of Satan

  2. Pergamos Revelation 2:8-11 c.325-500 A.D. “Much Marriage”

  3. (Rev 2:12) And to the angel of the church in Pergamos write; These things saith he which hath the sharp sword with two edges;

  4. (Rev 2:13) I know thy works, and where thou dwellest, even where Satan's seat is: and thou holdest fast my name, and hast not denied my faith, even in those days wherein Antipas was my faithful martyr, who was slain among you, where Satan dwelleth.

  5. Following the link of Bible Believers… …Through Church History

  6. Acts 24

  7. The Montanists

  8. (1Co 4:16) Wherefore I beseech you, be ye followers of me. (1Co 11:1) Be ye followers of me, even as I also am of Christ. (Php3:17-18) Brethren, be followers together of me, and mark them which walk so as ye have us for an ensample. (For many walk, of whom I have told you often, and now tell you even weeping, that they are the enemies of the cross of Christ:

  9. Pergamos • In most books on church history the Montanists are referred to as an heretical group. • A careful study of what they believed and stood for, however, reveals that they were orthodox, and part of our heritage as Bible-believers H

  10. Pergamos • Their Name • They are called “Montanists” because they followed the preaching of a man by the name of Montanus. • Their Leader • Montanus lived in Ardaban in Phrygia. He was an idol priest in the pagan cult of Cybele, but came to Christ aroundthe latter half of the 2nd century H

  11. Pergamos • The Reason for the Montanists Movement. • We have noted in this study how that by 150 A.D., many deviations from the Word of God had begun to effect the church. Some of these were: • The rise of Clergy class. • (This is the teaching that Rev. 2:6 and 2:15 calls the deeds or doctrine of the Nicolaitians.) • A drift in the church toward formalism and ritualism H

  12. Pergamos • A lack of genuine spirituality • A laxity in the standards for churchmembership and church discipline • The Response of Montanus and the Montanists • He speaks out against the priest class from the scriptures • He speaks out against the formalism and ritualism • He speaks out against their loose membership requirements. H

  13. Pergamos • The Doctrines of the Montanists • A true church is made up of people who have truly been born again. • Henry C. Vedder, A Short History of the Baptist, 58 • Baptism is by immersion and is for believers only. • “(The Montanist) principle of a regenerate church would naturally require the baptism of believers only..Of course, the Montanists immersion-no other baptism, so far as we know, was practiced by anybody in the second century.” H

  14. Pergamos • Personal Holiness • “They held that science and art, all worldly education or gay form of life should be avoided because such things belonged to Paganism.” • John T. Christian, A History of the Baptist, Vol. 1, 42 • Church Discipline • They said, “Against a mortal sin the church should defend itself by rightly excluding him who committed it, for the holiness of the church was simply the holiness of it members.” • Ibid.,42 H

  15. Pergamos Trinitarian Theology The Complete Word of God The Premillennial return of Christ. H

  16. Pergamos • The Accusations against the Montanists • They were ancient “holy rollers”, who over-emphasized the Holy Spirit. • That Montanus said that he was the Paraclete (Holy Spirit) • That they claimed to have extra-biblical revelations. H

  17. Pergamos • Answering the Accusations • Keep in mind that many of the doctrines that were held by the Montanists, were contrary to the things the scholarly minds of the day were writing about and teaching. • The Montanists Movement was contemporaneous with Origen, the “great” headmaster of the so-called “Christian” university down in Alexandria Egypt. Origen hated pre-millennialism! • Philip Schaff, History of the Christian Church H

  18. Pergamos • Anybody who held to pre-millennialism was immediately branded as heretics by every follower of the Alexander school. • Eusebius, the so-called “great” church historian hates pre-millennialism as well. What then, would we expect Eusebius to write about the Montanists? • What would reporters from Vatican City write about our church and our views? H

  19. Pergamos • Note the answers from several church historians: • “With regard to these sects and so-called heresies (Montanism), one difficulty in understanding them arises from the fact that..their own writings have perished; and we are dependent for our views upon those who wrote against them, and were undoubtedly prejudice.” • Jesse Lyman Hurlbut, D.D., The Story of the Christian Church, 52-53 H

  20. Pergamos • Farrar says, • “It is beginning to be widely recognized that in many of its aspects Montanism was an honest and earnest effort to restore the discipline and practices of primitive Christianity.” • Fredric Farrar, Lives of the Fathers, Vol. 1 H

  21. Pergamos • One who made the accusations about Montanus claiming to be the Holy Spirit was Mosheim, the famous Lutheran historian. However, McLean, the translator of his history adds the footnote: • “Those are undoubtedly mistaken who have asserted that Montanusgave himself out that he was the Holy Ghost.” • Mosheim, Church History, Vol.1 • Armitage concludes: • “For this reason Montanus was charged with assuming to be the Holy Spirit, which was simply a slander. • Armitage, 1.175 H

  22. Pergamos • How Some Historians Have Defended The Montanists • “The conclusion of an early historian, Dr. William R. Williams is that it was hard to find doctrinal errors in their teaching. Their emotionalism stemmed from their belief that a true experience of grace is evident in the believer’s life, as many other teachers have stressed in much later periods of reform” H

  23. Pergamos • … “A Dr. Dorner wrote of their movement that it was a democratic reaction of the church members against the movement to install church leaders as overlords in the church body.” • “Moller, contributor to the Schaff-Herzog Religious Encyclopedia, wrote, ‘But Montanism was, nevertheless, not a new form of Christianity; nor were the Montanists a new sect. On the contrary Montanism was, simply a reaction of the old, the primitive church, against the obvious tendency of the day, to strike a bargain with the world and arrange herself comfortably in it.’’ • J. W. Griffith, A Manual of Church History, II, 36 H

  24. The Novatians

  25. Pergamos • Newman writes, “Novatianism was Montanism reappearing under peculiar circumstances and in another age.” • Albert Henry Newman, A Manual of Church History, Vol. 1, 206 H

  26. Pergamos • The Reason for the Novatianist Movement • Keep in mind the Ten Official Roman Persecutions prophesied for the Smyrna Church Period (c.200-325 A.D.) in Rev. 2:10.. • The Seventh persecution was that under Decius, which began around 249 A.D. • Many professing Christians denied Christ, made sacrifice to pagan gods, and bowed to the Emperor of Rome. H

  27. Pergamos • As the persecution subsided, many of these “traitors” sought re-admittance into the church. This is where the controversy centered. Should they be able to return and is so, How?? • About this time, the pastor of the church in Rome, Fabian, died. • The two groups that arose… • The lax group- Cornelius • The strict group- Novation • They were headed by a man named Novation. His followers were called Novations. H

  28. Pergamos • The Doctrines of the Novatians • Purity of the Church Membership • They believed that a church should separate itself from all apostasy, all impurity, and all worldliness. • Schaff well describes their position when he writes. • “The Novatians considered themselves the only pure communion, and un-churched all churches which defiled themselves by re-admitting the lapsed, or any gross offender.” • Schaff, 1,91 H

  29. Pergamos • Rigid Church Discipline • Rebaptism of Apostates • Beliefs Concerning Baptism • By emersion • By believing adults • To be done without great ceremony • To be done on church authority H

  30. Pergamos • Trinity • No church high archy or church state • Dr Robinson says that the Novatians were…. “Trinitarian Baptist! They held to the independence of churches, and recognized the equality of all pastors in respect to dignity and authority.” • Robinson, Ecclesiastical Researchers, 45 H

  31. Pergamos • The Writings In Response To and Against the Novatians • Cyprian, the Bishop of Carthage around 250 A.D., a supposed “great” Church Father, wrote against the Novatians in one of his best known works, • The Unity of the Catholic Church; • “The spouse of Christ cannot be defiled, she is inviolate and chaste..Whoever breaks with the church and enters on an adulterous union, cuts himself off from the promises made to the Church, and he who has turned his back on the Church of Christ shall not come to the rewards of Christ; he is an alien, a worldling, an enemy. You cannot have God for you Father, if you have not the Church for your mother…Whoever breaks the peace and harmony of Christ acts against Christ; whoever gathers elsewhere than in the Church, scatters the Church of Christ.” • St. Cyprian, trans, Maurice Bevenot, 52-53 H

  32. Pergamos • Cyprian’s plea for unity against separatist: • “God is one, and Christ is one, and His Church is one; one in the faith, and one the people cemented together by harmony into the strong unity of a body..Nothing that is separated from the parent stock can ever live or breathe apart; all hope of salvation is lost” • Ibid..65 H

  33. Pergamos • Note that early separatists were accused of lack of love. • Speaking of Christ, Cyprian writes: • “Unity and love together He taught with the weight of His authority..But what unity is maintained, what love practiced, or even imagined, by one who made with the frenzy of discord..splits the Church.” • Ibid.,58 H

  34. Pergamos • Make sure that you note that the real issue has always been, will you love unity or will you love truth!!! • “From an early stage there emerge two completely different interpretations of Christianity. On the one hand, there is the orthodox Catholic Church, prepared to compromise with the evils of this world for the sake of unity and peaceful progress.. On the other hand, there is the Church of the Holy Spirit, or enthusiasm, of open hostility to the world, individualistic and intolerant.” • W.H.C. Frend, The Donatist Church, 112,113 H

  35. Pergamos • The Effects of The Novatianist Movement • “The Novatians were the earliest Anabaptist; refusing to recognize as valid the ministry and sacraments of their opponents and, claiming to be the true church, they were logically compelled to rebaptize all who come to them from the Catholic church. The party gained great strength in Asia Minor where many Montanists joined it, and , in spite of the persecution, the Novatians survived the 6th or 7th century. H

  36. Pergamos “Dr. Robinson traces a continuation of them up to the Reformation and the rise of the Anabaptist movement. Great numbers followed his, i.e. Novations’s example, and all over the empire Puritan churches were constituted and flourished through 200 succeeding years. Afterwards, when penal laws obliged them to lurk in corners and worship God in private, they were distinguished by a variety of names and succession of them continued until the Reformation.” H

  37. Pergamos “One the count of the purity of their lives they were called the Cathari, that is the pure. ‘What is still more’, says Mosheim, ‘they rebaptized such as came over to them from the Catholics.’ (Mosheim. Institutes Of Ecclesiastical History I 203, NY, 1871) “Since they baptized those who came to them from other communions they were called Anabaptist. The fourth Lateran Council decreed that these rebaptizers should be punished by death.” Christian, A History of the Baptist, I, 44-45 H

  38. The Donatists

  39. Pergamos • Neander says of them, • “This schism may be compared in many respects to that of Novatianism in the preceding period. In this, too, we see the conflict, for example of Separatism with Catholicism..” • Augustus Neander, General History of the Christian Religion and Church, II,216 H

  40. Pergamos • Schaff admits also, • “The Donatists controversy was a conflict between separatism and Catholicism; between ecclesiastical purism and ecclesiastical eclecticism; between the idea of the church as an exclusive community of regenerate saints and the idea of the church as the general Christendom of state and people. It revolved around the doctrine of the essence of the Christian church, and , in particular of the predicate of holiness.” • Schaff, III, 153 H

  41. Pergamos • The Reason For the Donatist Movement • Augustine headed the Council of Mela in Numidia (415 A.D.) and pronounced that all people who reject infant baptism are cursed. H

  42. Pergamos • He twisted Scripture (specifically Luke 14:23) to provide justification for torturing and murdering people opposed to the teachings of the Catholic Church. • Augustine wrote, • “It is indeed, better that men should be brought to serve God by instruction that by fear or punishment or by pain. But because the former means are better, the latter must not therefore be neglected..Many must often be brought back to their Lord, like wicked servants, by the rod of temporal suffering, before they attain the highest grade of religious development..The Lord himself order that the guests be first invited, then compelled, to his great supper.” • Schaff III, 144-145 H

  43. Pergamos • The Doctrines Of The Donatist • Church Purtiy • “The Donatist championed a church which was pure, a church which was intolerant of those elements which would contaminate it. A chief emphasis of the Donatists was upon the holiness of the church, while some writers (such as Neander) repeatedly accuse them of “separatist pride” it was the genuine concern of the Donatists to pattern the church after the apostolic model.” • Earnest Pickering, Biblical Separation, The Struggle For a Pure Church,20 H

  44. Pergamos Separation of Church and State Scriptural Baptism Independency of Churches H

  45. The Paulicians

  46. Pergamos • Their name • They said the church should get what it believes from the epistles of Paul because he wrote to the Churches H

  47. Pergamos • Their Doctrine • They claimed to have originated with Christ and the Apostles • They accepted the Word of God as the rule of faith. • They recognized only believers baptism • They rejected transubstantiation • They rejected all forms of ceremonialism • They had no hierarch, or clerical office. H

  48. Pergamos • Their Doctrine • A special quote about the requirements for those serving in the office of pastor in a Paulician church: • “Again, the ordaining of an elder requires great care lest anyone unworthy be chose. It must be ascertained whether he has perfect wisdom, love, which is chief of all, prudence, gentleness, humility, justice, courage, sobriety, eloquence. In laying hands on him, which is to be done with prayer and the reading of suitable Scriptures, he is to be asked, ‘Art thou then able to drink the cup which I am about to drink, or to be baptized with the baptism with which I am about to be baptized?’..The reply is.. ‘I take on myself scourging, imprisonment, tortures, reproaches, crosses, blows, tribulation and all temptations of the world.’” E.H. Broadbend, The Pilgrim Church, 51 H

  49. The Cathari

  50. Pergamos • The numbers of these separatist groups were beginning to multiply, and were many times referred to as “The Cathari”, which comes from the Greek word “Katharos” meaning “pure” • “By the end of the twelfth century they were reported to have followers in nearly 1000 cities. The Dominican Rainerus gave 4,000,000 as a safe estimate of their number and declared this was according to a census made by the Cathari themselves. • Schaff, II,202 H