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134 results for early church found within the Blog

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What does the word "Catholic" mean?

Posted by Luke J. Wilson on 8th March 2021 in Etymology | catholic,church fathers,church history,etymology,roman catholic,eastern orthodox,Great Schism,Muratorian Fragment
  For many people today, non-Christians and (low church) Christians alike, when they hear the word “Catholic”, certain images spring to mind: the Pope, the rosery, Catholic school, big old churches buildings, choirboys, maybe monks or statues of Mary even; and sadly more recently, sex abuse scandals. But, generally speaking, all of these are actually aspects of Roman Catholicism — a particular branch of Christianity, and not what the word “catholic” truly means as we’ll see when examining how the early church used the word and what the original Greek word means. καθολικός (katholikos) The Greek word where we get the English word “c...
 

The Coming of Jesus: Revelation Fulfilled?

Posted by Luke J. Wilson on 31st December 2015 in Second Coming Series | Revelation,Second Coming,Preterism,apocalypse,armageddon,fulfilled prophecy,Return of Christ,Return of Jesus,Eschatology
Don’t let the title put you off, we’re about to go on a mad journey through the annuls of history and the Roman Empire, contrasting what John saw in his vision with what has already played out on the “world’s stage” and what we possibly have to look forward to! First though, let’s look at a little history concerning the book itself before delving into its contents. Why do this? For a couple of reasons really: one, Revelation has some dispute over the year in which it was written, which can impact on the interpretation. Two, at various points in early church history, the book was held in suspicion of being spurious and almost...
 

American Gun Violence and the early church on War and Violence

Posted by Luke J. Wilson on 3rd October 2017 in early church | early church,early church fathers,gun violence,America,mass shooting
In light of the sad, recent events in the Las Vegas shooting — and similar events in America— I often see Christians across social media jumping to the defence of gun ownership whenever there is even a slight hint at gun control in America. But how has gun culture become so ingrained in American Christianity when we can observe a clear theme and pattern of thought in the first few centuries of the church, which goes completely against this? Update 7th Nov 2017: It's so sad to have to update this post on the same subject so soon, almost a month to the day. Yet another shooting, this time in Texas where 26 people have been shot dead in a church of all pl...
 

Man-Made Tradition vs Apostolic Tradition

Posted by Luke J. Wilson on 28th February 2016 in early church | early church,early church fathers,tradition,creeds,nicene creed,apostolic creed,man made tradition,apostolic tradition
Quite often in discussions which are about or involve some aspects of early church history or practices earlier Christians did, someone will inevitably throw out the "show stopper" that is "it's all just man made tradition" therefore not valid and the discussion is over. It’s as though saying it's "man made", without considering anything other than that they can't find an isolated chapter and verse in the bible which states something explicitly, means they've "won" the debate! Nothing more to see here folks, someone told us it's man made so we can all go home now. Either that, or the mere mention of the word “tradition” and suddenly you’re accused of be...
 

Great Lent

Posted by Luke J. Wilson on 13th February 2016 in Fasting | Lent,Easter,Fasting,Prayer,early church,early church fathers,paganism,pagan roots
...that the early church fasted regular and often, especially when they sought direction from God. If it were not for the church fasting and praying in Acts 13:1-4, they may not have heard from the Holy Spirit about sending Paul out on his first missionary journey, and if he had not done that, the faith may never have spread as far and fast as it did, nor would we have the majority of our New Testament! Fasting is a vital church discipline, I believe. Similar, history changing events, also happened from prayer and fasting in 2 Chronicles 20, and the post-Acts early church. Here’s a quick quote from Tertullian (c.198) and Irenaeus (c.180), respectively, on the...
 

Does Christmas have pagan origins?

Posted by Luke J. Wilson on 19th December 2019 in Christmas | christmas,xmas,origins,pagan,pagan roots,church fathers,church history,Saturnalia,Epiphany,Annunciation,Tertullian,Origen,john chrysostom,incarnation,liturgical calendar,church calendar,festivals
...e how the early church viewed these festivals, as they were still happening in full force whilst the church was still young and were a contemporary concern, and what date they pinned the birth of Christ on to. Much of the earliest references to the Nativity occur in a passing way as a commentary on the event rather than anything celebratory about it. Justin Martyr in his First Apology (~160 AD) mentions that Jesus was born 150 years before him, in the time of Quirinius (or Cyrenius as some translations have it – cf. Luke 2:2), where his readers could “ascertain also from the registers” the accuracy of his statement. Tertullian (197 AD) also references thi...
 
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