The Protestant Reformation

For the time will come when people will not tolerate sound doctrine but, following their own desires and insatiable curiosity, will accumulate teachers and will stop listening to the truth and will be diverted to myths. 2 Timothy 4:3-4

In the 16th century, there was a great upheaval in the Church. This period of time in Church history is known as the Reformation. There were many factors, some valid and some invalid, that led to fragmentation. Although some factors were valid concerns, the fragmentation was an extreme course of action started by some with selfish motives, some with questionable mental stability, and some who were just misguided. Today there are about 33,830 denominations within Christianity. The largest denomination is Catholic. The second largest is non-practicing Catholics.

To understand the impact of the Reformation period we should first understand how the Church was established by Christ. Matthew 16 provides a thorough explanation of this event.

When entering the region of Caesarea Philippi, Jesus asked his disciples “Who do people say that the Son of Man is?” The disciples then offered various answers – “Some say John the Baptist, others Elijah, still others Jeremiah or one of the prophets.” But the question that Jesus then asked was crucial: “But who do you say that I am?

The answer provided by Simon Peter set in motion the formation of the Catholic Church by Jesus. “You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.

With this answer, Jesus established the Catholic Church with Simon Peter designated the first Pope.

Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah. For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my heavenly Father. And so I say to you, you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church, and the gates of the netherworld shall not prevail against it. I will give you the keys to the kingdom of heaven. Whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven; and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.

There have always been rivalries in the Church. Divide and conquer. Divide and conquer. Divide and conquer. Evil knows that division is the path to conquering. Although Jesus ensures that the netherworld will never prevail against the Church he created, I often pray for those misled by some people, and for those unaware of the Catholic Church in relation to Christ. Paul (Saul) had a pretty good point in 1 Cor:10

I urge you, brothers, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree in what you say, and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be united in the same mind and in the same purpose.

When we think about the Church and what Christ asked of us, we should look at the prayer by Jesus in John 17

Beginning Verse 11

And now I will no longer be in the world, but they are in the world, while I am coming to you. Holy Father, keep them in your name that you have given me, so that they may be one just as we are.

Beginning Verse 20

I pray not only for them, but also for those who will believe in me through their word, so that they may all be one, as you, Father, are in me and I in you, that they also may be in us, that the world may believe that you sent me. And I have given them the glory you gave me, so that they may be one, as we are one, I in them and you in me, that they may be brought to perfection as one, that the world may know that you sent me, and that you loved them even as you loved me.

Many profess “The Bible, The Whole Bible, and Nothing But The Bible”. If it were that simple, how can you explain the over 33,000 Christian denominations. The truth of the matter is that each has their interpretation of what “The Bible, The Whole Bible, and Nothing But The Bible” really is. We have many thousands of different interpretations.

I know in my heart that the “Living God” demands a “Living Church“. If the law and word of God began and ended with Jesus and the Bible, why would Jesus appoint a successor with the authority to mediate between man and heaven. We must understand that Jesus knew that faith was a living, breathing and delicate gift. He knew that new challenges brought forth in an evolving world would require someone to determine the moral path. Jesus created a single Church and gave it the apostolic charter to spread the word and “bind” and “loosen” strings of the relationship between man and heaven.

After much prayer, I know by the grace of God that I could not find salvation outside the Mother Church. At some point in the maturation process we should realize that we can’t continue to create new “churches” just because we don’t agree with the teachings of THE CHURCH. Simply moving to another “church” doesn’t alter the universal (Catholic) realities of right and wrong.

Jesus established a single Catholic Church with a single leader to ensure a single message would lead every single person on a single path through the single narrow door to salvation. Its that simple……..

If you are not accepting the sacraments of the Church and living by its teachings, it is time that you spend a considerable amount of time in prayer and answer as to WHY you are not. What ever the conclusion of your prayer may be, be aware that you are still bound by the teachings of the Roman Catholic Church regardless of any other affiliation you claim. Walking away from the Church and ignoring its teachings does not render you guiltless. It is the teachings of the Church that are “bound” in heaven and earth………..

Why are you proclaiming the name of Jesus and yet refuse the message from his Church? The Church to which gave the keys to the kingdom.

Wouldn’t you like to experience the complete Christian Faith as created by Jesus? To better understand the heritage and faith given to the world by Christ, I invite you to contact a Catholic friend or the local Catholic Church and inquire about RCIA sessions. They are free, painless, and there is no obligation.

There is nothing to fear and you have everything to gain. I pray that your heart will be opened, that your fear will vanish, and that you will come to experience the joy of Jesus Christ, as manifested in HIS Church.


How Did Your Church Begin?

33 A.D.

Roman Catholic Church (moved to Rome by Peter after he fled Jerusalem) was founded by God-made-man, Jesus Christ. He said: “Thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build My Church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it… Feed my lambs; feed My sheep” (Matt. 16:18,19; John 21:15,17). He also said: “He who is not with Me is against Me, and he who gathers not with me scatters” (Matt.12:30).

100

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9th Century Marked The First Official Schisms Within The Church

827Eastern Schism began by Photius of Constantinople. The primary difference in Faith at the heart of the schism was the argument over the addition of the filioque statement (Holy Spirit proceeds from the Father and the Son, not just the Father) to the creed. This schism eventually healed.

900

1000

1053Eastern Schism began by Michael Caerularius of Constantinople. The primary argument was the Latin practice of fasting on Saturday and the use of unleavened bread for the Holy Eucharist. Theses two points were more for challenging the authority of the Roman Pontif. This schism eventually healed.

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1300

1378:  Death of Pope Gregory XI on 27 March, 1378 began the Western Schism. The schism came to an end in 1417.

1400

1472:  Present Schism of the Eastern Church begins with the repudiation of the Council of Florence.

1500

1517 Lutheran Church was founded by Martin Luther, a former priest of the Roman Catholic Church. This marked the beginning of the Protestant Reformation

1521Anabaptist first appeared in Zwickau, in the present kingdom of Saxony. Initially, they were primarily against infant baptism.

1525: Schwenkfeldians were founded by Kaspar of Schwenkfeld, aulic councillor of Duke Frederick of Liegnitz and canon. At first he associated himself with Luther, but later opposed the latter in his Christology, as well as in his conception of the Eucharist, and his doctrine of justification.

1531: The Socinians and other Anti-Trinitarians attacked the fundamental doctrine of the Blessed Trinity. Chief founder of Anti-Trinitarians was Laelius Socinus, teacher of jurisprudence at Siena, and his nephew, Faustus Socinus.

1536Mennonites founded by Menno Simons, a former Catholic priest and later an Anabaptist elder. They deny infant baptism and the real presence of Jesus Christ in the Eucharist.

1534Church of England (Anglicanism) was founded by King Henry VIII when he threw off the authority of the Pope and proclaimed himself the head of the Church in England, because the Pope refused to declare invalid his marriage with Queen Catherine.

1560:  The Presbyterian denomination was begun by John Knox who was dissatisfied with Anglicanism.

1600

1608:  The Baptist church was launched by John Smyth in Amsterdam, Holland.

1620: The Swiss Mennonites split into Amish or Upland Mennonites and Lowland Mennonites.

1671: Quakers were founded by John George Fox of Drayton in Leicestershire. He favored a visionary spiritualism, and found in the soul of each man a portion of the Divine intelligence. All are allowed to preach, according as the spirit incites them.

1700

1744:  The Methodist church was launched by John and Charles Wesley in England.

1774:  The Unitarians were founded by Theophilus Lindley in London.

1784Episcopalian denomination was begun by Samuel Seabury who was dissatisfied with Presbyterianism.

1787:  The founder of The Salvation Army is William Booth, who quit the Anglicans, and then the Methodists, and set up his own version of Christianity.

1800

1822: Mormons founded by Joseph Smith, who made his appearance with supposed revelations in 1822.

1872: The Jehovah’s Witness Church was developed by Charles Russell.

1879:  Mrs. Mary Baker Eddy began the Christian Scientist religion basing it upon an outright denial of Original Sin and its effects.

1896:  Ballinger Booth, the son of William Booth, quit The Salvation Army and started his own church.

The Seventh-Day Adventists, the Church of Christ, The Church of the Nazarene, or any of the various Pentecostal Churches, etc. are also among the hundreds of new churches founded by men within the past 150 years or so.

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Over 33,000 Sects “Scattered” Outside The One Church Founded By Christ

There Was Only ONE Church Founded By Christ

AND HIS CHURCH STILL LIVES TODAY

Learn About Heresy That Divides The Church Founded By Christ

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