The Early Church, "Church Fathers" and Orthodoxy
I have been bumping into christians who having left the institutional church and having studied the early church believe that the Orthodox church is a return to the faith and practice once delivered to the saints. Have you encountered any of this and if you have is there a source of instruction to point them to? Have the writings of the early christians affected the way the believers with you walk out their faith? I read 2 books a brother gave me and even though there were some seemingly compelling points made I just was not convinced that this was the church that could trace its existence back to the very desire of the Father.—joe
Hi Joe... Well, by AD 100 you can see in Rev.2-Rev.3 what a MESS things were, almost universally UNACCEPTABLE to Jesus, by His OWN Testimony. So WHY would we want to “copy” the tomfoolery and ritual and hierarchy of those who came along after AD 100? Yucko! Jesus and the Apostles eschewed the ritual and form and hierarchy that had come to be so much a part of their Jewish heritage, and got in deep trouble with the “leaders” for ignoring the hand washing and other rituals, and the like. Jesus FORBID titles and hierarchies (Mat.23, Mark 7, etc etc), while the “church fathers” of the AD100 and later era embraced the very things that got Jesus killed for opposing. Why don’t we go to JESUS, the Author and Perfecter, and those He hand-trained as the 12 Foundation Stones, instead of playing a RIDICULOUS and dangerous game of trying to copy the nonsense, heresy, and sin that Jesus violently opposed in His day physically, and 70 years later in Rev.2 and Rev.3?
Were there good Christians in the second and third centuries? Certainly. Does that give them ANY credibility as “builders” rather than just as decent Saved men? NO WAY. Jesus is our Model and Teacher, and HE chose the Foundation Stones of His Holy City. Anything beyond that is someone lapsing into the same FLESH that loves ritual, sacraments, pomp and circumstance. Notice a pagan “graduation ceremony” if you doubt the flesh’s animal proclivity for ritual, form, robes, ceremony, magic superstitions, hierarchy, and the like.
Remember the “whisper” game, where one man whispers in another’s ear and he into another’s, all around the circle—and the result at the end of the circle of whispers being RADICALLY different than the Original? WHY WOULD WE WANT TO INTERCEPT SOMEONE HALFWAY AROUND THE CIRCLE and try to use them for “Gospel”—when JESUS already condemned the majority of what was happening in the “Post-First Century era” (Rev.2, 3) even BEFORE the greek orthodox/roman catholic “attendance based” ritual and hierarchy stuff emerged, and its wannabes coming into vogue these days?
WHY NOT GO BACK TO THE ORIGINAL—when Jesus Himself, who hated ritual and titles and hierarchy (Mark 7, Mat.23, etc), would not practice it, contributing significantly to His own murder?
Joe, there is so much more to say, and the addictive nature of ritual and form to the flesh is VERY evident by the 800 million roman catholics who will not question it, and are drunk on it. BOY, could I tell you some “inside” stories of its corrupt nature, and where the path leads. This is no different in its substance and essence, and its end result. The first time folks desire to start obeying Commands, and living out Heb.3:12-14 and the resulting 1Cor.12/Acts 2:42-47 Life, they will find out the “early fathers” and “orthodox” fad is a HOAX—a hoax and substitute propagated especially by a couple of men who are making money off of the books, and bought into by those who love the fleshly odor of it all and have something to hide. It is about “flesh” not Jesus—just as men and women roll over for the “pomp” of “graduation ceremonies” and corporate “award ceremonies” where they pose for a picture “kissing the trophy” or “walking across the stage” or other nonsense designed to be attractive to shallow flesh, from the beginning of time.
Don’t buy it, Joe. And spread the word, to help others avoid this “venus fly trap” of sentimental fleshly instinct. Love in Jesus,