How Old Is Your Church?


The Lutheran Religion is about 500 years old and was founded by Martin Luther, an ex-priest of the Catholic Church. He began the Church in 1517.

If you are an Anglican or Church of England, your religion started because the Catholic Church denied King Henry VIII a divorce so he could remarry. He left the Church and started his own in 1534.

The Presbyterian religion was started in Scotland in the year 1560 by John Knox.

Protestant Episcopalianism, which split from the Church of England, led by Samuel Seabury in the American Colonies, was established in the 17th Century.

If you are a Congregationalist, your Church started with Robert Brown in Holland in the year 1582.

The Methodist Church started in England in 1744; founded by John and Charles Wesley.

If you are Unitarian, your religion was founded by Theophilus Lindley in London in 1774.

Michaelis Jones founded the Dutch Reformed Church in New York in 1628.

Are you a member of the Church of the Latter-Day Saints (Mormon, LDS)? Your religion began in Palmyra, N.Y., in 1829, founded by Joseph Smith.

The Christian Scientists began in 1879 from Mrs. Mary Baker Eddy.


The Church of the Nazarene was founded in 1908 by several people, including Phineas F. Bresee, Hiram F. Reynolds, William Howard Hoople, Mary Lee Cagle, Robert Lee Harris, J.B. Chapman, C. W. Ruth, in
Pilot Point, Texas, U.S.

And if you attend the Baptist Church, you owe your beliefs to John Smyth, who started the religion in Amsterdam in 1605.

If you worship with Salvation Army, your religion began in London in 1865 by William Booth.

If you are a member of one of the Jehovah’s Witnesses, your sect began in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA, in the 1870s, founded by Charles Taze Russell.

But if you are Catholic, your Church was started in 33 A.D. by Jesus Christ, Son of God. He commissioned his Apostles to spread the very faith you profess today, and those have continued to pass both the message and the priestly ministry from one generation to the next in an unbroken link of Apostolic Succession. Your religion is over 2000 years old!


“[the Catholic Church is].. the world’s oldest and largest continuously functioning international institution” 

 Mark A. Noll. The New Shape of World Christianity (Downers Grove, IL: IVP Academic, 2009), 191.

If there are inaccuracies in our texts, please share them below. Also add othes we have missed 🙂

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  1. Tshwane university of Technology,South Africa, Arcadia campus,Nelson Mandela Drive Private Bag 0001,Pretoria. says:

    Guys all the heated debate have nothing to save us from the recent troubles Christians are going through.if your fellow christian is being persecuted by another believer,what are we thinking about? if it is me today,tomorrow is yours,why should Christians keep on dieing and fellow believers are quite.what strategies are we putting in place to save ourselves rather than making unnecessary debate,yet every single moment millions of Christians are in pains.colleague Christians think about it for yourselves.stop the debate and look forward for your enemy is getting closer,so be careful and beaware otherwise……

  2. I cannot claim supremacy of knowledge and speak for myself? Why do you need to know your past church history and your core belief? To be certain of where you are going. I can only say this, Let’s be students of history then God will open our minds to the truth. Peace.

    1. Sorry but Mary is not the mother of the universe as she was a sinful woman needing the grace of God for salvation just like all of mankind, remember the Bible says in Romans 3:23 “23-24 For all have sinned , and come short of the glory of God; 24 Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus:” , all means all and that includes Mary the mother of Jesus, and to call Mary the mother of the universe would mean that she was around from the beginning and we all know that would not be true as she was born in her own time just like we all are..3:23 All must come to God by faith in Jesus Christ because all have sinned and fallen short of (i.e., lack) God’s glory (cf. Mark 10:21). The glory of God refers to the outward manifestation of what God is. It includes especially the majesty of His powerful person and the sublimity of His supremely elevated position.[116] Sin separates people from fellowship with a holy God. We lack both the character of God and the fellowship of God because of sin.
      3:24“We now come to the greatest single verse in the entire Bible on the manner of justification by faith: We entreat you, study this verse. We have seen many a soul, upon understanding it, come into peace.”[117]
      It is all who believe (v. 22), not all who have sinned (v. 23), who receive justification (v. 24).[118] Justification is an act, not a process. And it is something God does, not man. As mentioned previously, justification is a forensic (legal) term. On the one hand it means to acquit (Exod. 23:7; Deut. 25:1; Acts 13:39). On the other positive side it means to declare righteous. It does not mean to make righteous.
      “The word never means to make one righteous, or holy; but to account one righteous. Justification is not a change wrought by God in us, but a change of our relation to God.”[119]
      Justification describes a person’s status in the sight of the law, not the condition of his or her character. The condition of one’s character and conduct is that with which sanctification deals.
      “Do not confuse justification and sanctification. Sanctification is the process whereby God makes the believer more and more like Christ. Sanctification may change from day to day. Justification never changes. When the sinner trusts Christ, God declares him righteous, and that declaration will never be repealed. God looks on us and deals with us as though we had never sinned at all!”[120]
      God, the judge, sees the justified sinner “in Christ” (i.e., in terms of his relation to His Son) with whom the Father is well pleased (8:1; cf. Phil. 3:8-9; 1 Cor. 1:30; 2 Cor. 5:21). Justification includes forgiveness but is larger than forgiveness.
      “God declares that He reckons righteous the ungodly man who ceases from all works, and believes on Him (God), as the God who, on the ground of Christ’s shed blood, ‘justifies the ungodly’ (4.5). He declares such an one righteous: reckoning to him all the absolute value of Christ’s work,—of His expiating death, and of His resurrection, and placing him in Christ: where he is the righteousness of God: for Christ is that! . . .
      “We do not need therefore a personal ‘standing’ before God at all. This is the perpetual struggle of legalistic theology,—to state how we can have a ‘standing’ before God. But to maintain this is still to think of us as separate from Christ (instead of dead and risen with Him), and needing such a ‘standing.’ But if we are in Christ in such an absolute way that Christ Himself has been made unto us righteousness, we are immediately relieved from the need of having any ‘standing.’ Christ is our standing, Christ Himself! And Christ being the righteousness of God, we, being thus utterly and vitally in Christ before God, have no other place but in Him. We are ‘the righteousness of God in Christ.’“[121]
      God bestows justification freely as a gift. The basis for His giving it is His own grace, not anything in the sinner.
      “Grace means pure unrecompensed kindness and favor.”[122]
      Grace (Gr. charis) is the basis for joy (chara), and it leads to thanksgiving (eucharistia).
      The redemption that is in (i.e., came by) Christ Jesus is the means God used to bring the gift of justification to human beings. The Greek word for redemption used here (apolutroseos) denotes a deliverance obtained by purchase (cf. Matt. 20:28; 1 Tim. 2:6; 1 Pet. 1:18; 1 Cor. 6:20; 7:23; Gal. 3:13). Everywhere in the New Testament this Greek word, when used metaphorically, refers to “deliverance effected through the death of Christ for the retributive wrath of a holy God and the merited penalty of sin . . .”[123]
      Paul’s use of “Christ Jesus,” rather than the normal “Jesus Christ,” stresses the fact that God provided redemption by supplying the payment. That payment was the Messiah (Christ) promised in the Old Testament who was Jesus of Nazareth.
      Though the question of who received the ransom price has divided scholars, Scripture is quite clear that Jesus Christ offered Himself as a sacrifice to God (Luke 23:46).
      “Before you leave verse 24, apply it to yourself, if you are a believer. Say of yourself: ‘God has declared me righteous without any cause in me, by His grace, through the redemption from sin’s penalty that is in Christ Jesus.’ It is the bold, believing use for ourselves of the Scripture we learn, that God desires; and not merely the knowledge of Scripture.”[124]

  3. I attended a class on the Gospel of Matthew taught by a Roman Catholic priest & scholar at the Catholic Theological Union in Chicago in 1973. I was a Lutheran student at nearby Lutheran School of Theology. While studying this text the Professor lowered his head while shaking it and said “How the Church can use this text as a claim for Petrine supremacy, I do not know?”
    The Roman church in the 16th century was a different church in the 16th century as any student of world and religious history is aware, was different church. And it is even more different today. Jesus never ever made any claim of exclusivity for our faith.

  4. Actually, the modern day Roman Catholic church began when the Council of Trent ended in 1563. This was not an ecumenical council. This was a council consisting of only those loyal to the Roman bishop. No dissenting voices were allowed to attend. The Lutheran theologians were not invited to debate the topics of discussion which they had brought up, namely, the official position of the catholic church on the article of justification and the abuses of authority and power among the bishops. Prior to this regional council, there was no official doctrine of the church regarding justification. Thus, the modern day Roman Catholic church began when the decisions of Trent became the official teaching of Rome.

  5. I really reject the key assumptions of this article.
    1. If the older religion is always necessarily the better religion then why don’t we convert to Hinduism. The Vedas are still the oldest texts we have period. And what did Jesus have that improved upon Judaism?
    2. As has been said before Eastern Orthodox churches have much more of a claim because they have preserved key parts of liturgy and doctrine.
    2. What does it mean to “found” a church? What is the essence of a church? As a Lutheran I gladly proclaim that the church I belong to was “founded” by Christ who the letter of the Hebrews says was the “author and finisher” of our faith. And with a church what was founded? Apostolic authority? This is carried on in the Apostle’s Creed. The Bishop of Rome? Why did Rome have any special place of authority over Antioch, Corinth, Ephesus, Constantinople or Alexandria? Or could a church be understood in its confessional expression – the standardization of doctrines and practices? If this is the case the seven ecumenical councils left a great deal of doctrine up in the air and throughout medieval theology key matters of understanding faith, works, sacraments, the atonement, repentance, and the Christian life were deeply contested. So therefore the confessional expression that standardized these things really “founded” a church. In this way the Augsburg Confession (1530) predates the Canons of the Council of Trent (1540s) so we’ve got the Catholics beat by at least ten years.

    1. To everyone in this thread: Whichever “organization” one belongs to is based largely on their ethnicity, the beliefs of the people. This dictates which organization, i.e. Roman Catholic, Orthodox or not, Lutheran, Pentecostal, Presbyterian, etc. As long as the organized congregation one belongs to is monotheistic the rest of the details are up to interpretation as long as they are based on the bible. Jesus, the Christ, the long promised Messiah was a fulfillment of the Old Testament. Think on the exact meaning of what “testament” is. The testimony of the fathers of the tribes of Abraham, passed on by mouth for generations until it was written down. What were the original testimonies? Who knows for sure. Here is what is being missed. Jesus said no one can no my Father except thru Me. That is to say, that by Jesus example, His life, we see the old testament was not a law meant for man to stand judge and jury over each other. Nor to take another’s life for violating the commandments, Let he who is without sin cast the first stone. “Thou shalt not kill” means you can’t kill someone because they broke a commandment or a law of the people. All those pre-Jesus years full of men killing men, etc. Let us not forget that God punished Moses for committing adultery as well as David and so on. It has never been for man to kill in God’s name. Jesus was the manifestation, the example of what was meant by God’s law. To love one another is to fulfill the ten commandments. If you love one another you would not commit adultery, murder or covet anything. The same is with the church. I tell you this, God says, none of you have it right, but continue to seek the truth in Me, not thru each other, yet love one another as I have instructed you to do. Religions are organizations, institutions who all claim to be the true way. Only God is the true way. Still we are called, yay instructed to gather and praise God, pray to God, ask for forgiveness and to forgive each other. No organization has any other “beat”. There is no organized religion that has it right. There is only one way, one truth, one light. Focus on God our Father, God thru Jesus be moved by God’s Holy Spirit, One God, one love, one life, one truth. Quit putting each other down claiming to be doing so in God’s name. For he who causes one to sin in My name, it would be better had they never been born. Just love.,

  6. None of the above qualify! The Church of God was founded by Jesus Christ on the Day of Pentecost in 31 A.D. Every one of the churches mentioned above are heretical – the work of Satan and the apostates who served him.

  7. I also read the article from Ann Landers titled, “Religious Roots–From Abraham to Atheism,” Nov/11/1966. I give Ann Landers great credibility, for as an educated Jewish woman, she certainly knows about Jewish history, Jesus is a Jew, the same yesterday, today, and forever. He only founded One (1) Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church, from St. Peter down to Pope Francis. No one else can claim Apostolic Succession as the Catholic Church can. It remains unbroken. ❤️➕

  8. Don’t be silly. The Church put Christian faces on the old pagan holidays because we don’t know the true dates of the birth of Christ, of Mary or of St. John the Baptist-the only three birthdays the Church celebrates. People were used to celebrating at certain times of the year and it was just easier to use the established dates-like all schools used to dismiss when the kids were needed on the farm. It’s not some hidden plot.
    Easter, pagan name and all, is linked in to the Jewish Passover so we are probably closer to that than to any of the others. The rest of the saint’s days are the days of their deaths, not their birthdays.

  9. I recall this being in an Ann Landers column years ago. I saved it for my theology classes. The one Church founded by Jesus Christ split around the year AD 1054, along the same lines as the Roman Empire split. Both share a common heritage. They are two halves; there is no older half any more than your brother got the bigger half of the cupcake.

  10. I was raised Catholic, but even that didn’t stop me from realizing that at the time of Jesus’ death the Romans were still pagan and continues to be pagans for approximately 280 years until Constantine called for a meeting called the Council of Nicea, where the Nicean creed originates from. This was to unite Christians and pagans. The holidays we have are all associated with pagan practices. Don’t be afraid to research outside of the “catholic box”

    1. Ok look at the context and don’t read the Bible like a cookbook. Jesus’ comment about calling no one father was to the Pharisees. It was not a general instruction to the population. Whatever they were doing ticked Him off, as they so often did. It also says to call no one teacher, but we still do that? Do you really think Jesus didn’t like the word father? He wasn’t even speaking English.

    2. Yanto, so you take the “call no man father” line literally… but I bet you’ve never done the same for these words of Jesus:
      “He said also to the man who had invited him, “When you give a dinner or a banquet, do not invite your friends or your brothers or your kinsmen or rich neighbors, lest they also invite you in return, and you be repaid. But when you give a feast, invite the poor, the maimed, the lame, the blind.” –Luke 14: 12-13
      Or less so these:
      “So Jesus said to them, ‘Truly, truly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of man and drink his blood, you have no life in you; he who eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. For my flesh is food indeed, and my blood is drink indeed.'” –John 6:53-55

  11. Why are we so bogged down with differences and political correctness? Why don’t we build on our commonality, which is our belief in the Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, who came to save all and not just a few? Isn’t the very basic commandment of the God of our Fathers to love one another as He has loved us? That should be our uniting dogma, not church history, and that’s what it means to belong to Christ and it also means being universal, just what Catholicity or Christianity means.

  12. Sir , is it about church; oldest or youngest ? Certainly, capital NO ! Rather , it is about the fear and love of God , keeping His commandments, believing all that the scripture says , avoid the preaching , teaching and imbibing heresies etc. Except a man be born again , he cannot see the kingdom of God.

  13. Ok, did a bit of research, and the main point of contention, as I see it, is that the Roman Catholic church claimed the Bishop of Rome was claiming infallible, which had never been claimed for any of the bishops, and primacy over the other bishops and rites, and essentially “creating” the position of pope. Once again, it appears the the Roman Catholic church is not what it appears to be! And the very fact that Orthodoxy was totally left out of this article gives me pause. They seem to have listed all the churches that broke away from Roman Catholicism, but not the one they broke away from!

  14. It don’t matter how old is your church your church is not going to get you in heaven the only way is through Jesus he is the only way to the father if you belive he is the only begotten son of the most high that he was born of a virgin that he died on the cross and that he came back from the dead three days later and confess that you are a siner you can do it any were the your name will be write in the lambs book of life amen

  15. :Geez. Apostolos, this is something they left out of my 12 years of Catholic school! I never knew this. All I ever knew of the Orthodox was that one of my parents’ friends was allegedly excommunicated because he married a Russian Orthodox woman in the 50s. Never really understood that. I will certainly research this claim.

  16. This article is greatly disheartening- none of the “religions” listed are religions- they are denominations of Christianity. To my knowledge, all of them espouse a belief that Jesus Christ is the Messiah, the Son of God and our Savior. There may be differing doctrinal issues dividing them, but they all share a belief in Christ. How dare the writer claim them as religions rather than denominations of Christianity. As a Lutheran I declare my faith in the words of the Apostles and Nicene Creeds, the same creeds as Roman Catholics do. Stop being so divisive!

  17. Full Question
    What is the difference between the Roman Catholic and the Catholic religion? I was brought up to believe that Roman Catholic was the stricter of the two.
    The Catholic religion is the religion of the Catholic Church—i.e., that group of churches in communion with the pope. If a group isn’t in communion with the pope, it isn’t part of the Catholic Church.
    Within the Catholic Church there are a number of individual churches, sometimes called rites. One of these is the Roman rite or Roman church. It includes most of the Catholics in the Western world. A Roman Catholic is a Catholic who is a member of the Roman rite.
    There are many Catholics in the East who are not Roman Catholics, such as Maronite Catholics, Ukrainian Catholics, and Chaldean Catholics. These are all in communion with the pope, but they are not members of the Roman rite, so they are not Roman Catholics.
    The Roman rite is not stricter than these other rights. They are equal. They all teach the same faith; it is only local customs that are different among them.

  18. I think that, as catholics, we should be very grateful that we continue in the original path that Jesus paved for us with His blood. Whether we follow the Roman or the Orthodox Rite today, it wasn’t our personal decision, but our ancestors’. However, we must seek what unites us and work with that, instead of what separates us. If the hierarchies of our churches have worked that issue out, we should enjoy who we are today. I am a practicing Roman Catholic, but I’ve gone to Orthodox Masses in the Middle East, and also in NY, and I love it! I was impressed by some of their customs and have implemented them in my personal life; particularly the manner in which they perform the sign of the cross.
    We have to thank God that with the carnage that the devil has caused in the world, our faith is still intact!! So, my catholic brothers and sisters, let’s keep praying! Our world has gone blind and dumb! But let’s remember that God was willing to pardon Sodom and Gomorrah if He found 10 righteous people in their midst! Jesus trusted the salvation of the world to us. Our forefathers cleansed each generation with their blood; let’s continue in their footsteps without deviating to the right or to the left. Love, pray and trust in God. Amen.

    1. Anthony, there is nothing “revisionist” about the Orthodox position of the Schism. We only know FACTS. Emissaries of the Pope were the ones that first went to Constantinople in 1054 and threw down a writ of excommunication on the Holy Altar table of Hagia Sophia, then wiped the dust from their feet as they left. Clearly, this was a “power struggle” on the part of the Bishop of Rome. Any good Catholic theologian knows this, so I suggest you consult one and read up on your Church history.

      1. That is true that Cardinal Humbert who did the excomunication first. But, do you know who the One he was excomunicated? He was excommunicated Michael Cerularius. Not the whole church.
        Do you know that before you even born in this earth, your patriach and our pope has nullified that mutual excommunication?
        Why are you still dwelling in the past?
        Do you have the authority to your church?
        Before Constantinople became the New Capitol of Nova Roma, it was under the see of Heraclea. Because the Emperor moved to Constantinople and supported Christianity, see of Constantinople seized that opportunity and rose to claim equality to Rome, causing Alexandria and Antioch unease. At those times, Rome was taken the Neutral part, as the Eldest among brothers.
        But, Constantinople seems blinded by the lust for power, even claimed the ecumenical patriarchy.
        And you said Rome made inventions? No wonder God punished those area with the rise of Islam.

  19. I was baptized in the Greek Orthodox Church, but I studied history and found the claims of Orthodox to be the true church as untrue. All the writing of the Eastern bishops shows that they followed the Bishop of Rome for the first 1000 years. The problem occurred because the Patriarch of Constantinople was appointed by the Emperor of Rome, so when an Emperor fell into heresy, he chose an heretical patriarch ( i.e. iconoclastism). As well, there was a push to make Constantinople the head of the church that was purely political.
    Peter was the head of the Apostles after our blessed lord ascended into heaven. He alone Jesus gave the keys of the kingdom. Rome is Peter’s seat, and there are his successors. Anyone who splits from Peter, creates a new church.

  20. My bible only mentions one church – none of those mentioned in this article. The only church I find in the bible is the one Jesus built – HIS church. When one “put on” Christ, he became a Christian. Nothing more, nothing less. NOT Catholic, NOT protestant. NOT Jewish. Those were all founded later by man. They are nowhere mentioned in the Bible.

    1. In Matthew 16:18-19 “And I also say to you that are Peter, and on this rock I will build My church, and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it. ” ” And I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.” If the Pope of Rome was the successor of Peter, then it’s obvious that the Roman Catholic church was the one founded by Jesus Christ in the year 33.

  21. I agree with cjahsman, and he has Scripture on his side: In Matthew 16:18 Jesus says “And so I say to you, you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church.” Not, “And so I say to you, you are Peter and John and… let’s see, James the Greater and Matthew, and why not Simon too, and upon this pile of rocks I will build my church.”

  22. Uhm excuse me…If it is true that the Orthodox Church that Christ founded in the year 33 AD where’s your proof?
    May I quote “one Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church.” this words came from you Apostolos… but it seems there is something wrong if is true that the ORTHODOX is the one true church then why it is not One Holy ORTHODOX and Apostolic Church? But CATHOLIC is used instead..
    Matthew 19: 18 – 19 – This is the biblical basis of the catholic Church founded on the rock named Peter. This is just one of many verses that supports this claim. Is there any biblical basis of Orthodox founded by Christ?
    Mary, The Mother of the Word incarnate have many apparitions to members of the Catholic Church and this was proven. Then why Mama Mary or even Jesus appeared on Catholics? if it true that the Orthodox Christians belong to the “one Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church.” then why is that?…
    The answer is clear.

    1. Kaiser, you need to study the Nicene Creed a little better. The word “catholic” in the context of the “One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church” means “universal”, and does NOT refer to the Roman Catholic Church. This is elementary, and if you didn’t know that, you have no business in this discussion.

      1. Well, you need to study St. Ignatius of Antioch letter to Smyrnean. He has called the Church Catholic, long before Nicene Creed. And if you didn’t know that, you’re also have no business in this discussion

      2. Apostolos, act like a Christian. You sound like a haughty and rude secularist. There is a clear line of succession of popes. There can only be one apostolic church, the holy spirit isn’t guiding people into error and different denominations.

    1. Orthodox left Rome The One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church. The orthodox church also allows a man to divorce three times with no problem. I dont think thats what JESUS said and there are many other problems. Many rites have returned to Rome and all the rest are in council at the Vatican (10 yrs now) to fully return to Rome.

  23. This posting has been copied from an article by eminent Greek Orthodox theologian Rev. Dr. Miltiades Efthimiou, but has sadly been changed. The Orthodox Church (i.e. the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church) is not even mentioned, yet it is the Mother Church. The last paragraph (regarding the Roman Catholic Church) SHOULD read as follows:
    If you are Roman Catholic, your church shared the same rich apostolic and doctrinal heritage as the Orthodox Church for the first thousand years of its history, since during the first millennium they were one and the same Church. Lamentably, in 1054, the Pope of Rome broke away from the other four Apostolic Patriarchates (which include Constantinople, Alexandria, Antioch and Jerusalem), by tampering with the Original Creed of the Church, and considering himself to be infallible. Thus your church is 1,000 years old.
    If you are Orthodox Christian, your religion was founded in the year 33 by Jesus Christ, the Son of God. It has not changed since that time. Our church is now almost 2,000 years old. And it is for this reason, that Orthodoxy, the Church of the Apostles and the Fathers is considered the true “one Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church.” This is the greatest legacy that we can pass on to the young people of the new millennium.

    1. Umm….no. Sorry. The Roman Catholic Church is the original church founded by Christ when He said to Peter, the first Pope, “thou art Peter and upon this rock I build my church”. We trace the unbroken line of Popes from Francis back to Peter directly. The Patriarchal churches broke away from Rome. Not the other way around. Need to research your history.

      1. The Roman Catholic Church was founded nearly 600 years after the first church, Christ’s Church or Church of Christ is the oldest founded in 33 A.D.

        1. Nice try but no. You can define it any way that you like but the historical fact is that the line of Popes stretches from Francis to Peter to Jesus in an unbroken string. Thus the Catholic church is indeed the original one true church on earth.

          1. I didn’t have to “try”, mcrognale… I know I am correct. Church history is church history and any good Roman Catholic theologian worth his salt knows full well that the Eastern Orthodox Church IS, in fact, the Mother Church. To those on this thread who tell me I’m incorrect, or that I’m making up my own church history or that I am heretical, YOU guys need to read up on your history. The Orthodox Church refuses to believe in the supremacy and infallibility of the Pope (a dogma which, by the way, wasn’t established until July 18, 1870 during Vatican I) because we do not believe that any one person is infallible. The Ecumenical Councils, however, ARE infallible, and the basis of Church doctrine rests with them. But to place infallibility on one individual? We do not espouse that. And I only bring up the pope’s infallibility because one person commented that we “refused to accept the Pope as the leader designated by Jesus Christ Himself…” blah blah blah. Absolutely NOT correct. The first writ of excommunication (and therefore the first “move” of the Great Schism of 1054) was made by the Western Church. Again: read your Church history. Ask your competent theologians. They’ll (reluctantly) tell you.

          2. Who cares when and why the Churches were found as they are all man made and are all going to fail, it is a relationship with Christ that counts in the end not a religion with Christ, Christ is the first Church and Peter was a Jew not a Catholic so that would make him the first Mascenic Jewish Christian not a Catholic Christian, Paul the Apostle says that Peter had the special charge of being apostle to the Jews, just as he was apostle to the Gentiles. Another apostle, James, is regarded as the leader of the Jewish Christians.
            Peter is honored by Catholics all over the world. So much so, in fact, that the statue’s foot is being worn away by the “kisses of the faithful”. Yes, Catholics love Peter so much that they disregard the warning Peter gave the earnest Cornelius when the latter “fell down at his feet and worshipped him”. Peter said, “Stand up; I myself also am a man.” (Acts 10:25-26)
            You’d think that if Roman Catholics were going to follow Peter, they’d be interested in what he actually said, but I find this is not the case. Let me give you an example. The Catechism of the Catholic Church, #552 says, “Because of the faith he confessed, Peter will remain the unshakeable rock of the Church.” However, Peter writes in his letters that Jesus is the “rock” which the builders “disallowed” — not he! Listen carefully to Peter’s own words:
            “Wherefore also it is contained in the scripture, Behold, I lay in Sion a chief corner stone, elect, precious: and he that believeth on him shall not be confounded. Unto you therefore which believe, he is precious: but unto them which be disobedient, the stone which the builders disallowed, the same is made the head of the corner, And a stone of stumbling, and a rock of offence, even to them which stumble at the word, being disobedient … ” (1 Peter 2:6-8)
            Why did the Roman Catholic “builders” disallow Jesus as their “Rock” when their “first pope” says He is? They make Peter their “Rock” in Christ’s stead! Catholic historian and theologian, Peter DeRosa admits:
            “It may jolt them to hear that the great Fathers of the church saw no connection between it [Matt.16:18] and the pope. Not one of them applies ‘Thou art Peter’ to anyone but Peter. One after another they analyse it: Cyprian, Origen, Cyril, Hilary, Jerome, Ambrose, Augustine. They are not exactly Protestants. Not one of them calls the Bishop of Rome a Rock or applies to him specifically the promise of the Keys. This is staggering to Catholics…The surprises do not stop there. For the Fathers, it is Peter’s faith — or the Lord in whom Peter has faith —which is called the Rock, not Peter” (Vicars of Christ, DeRosa, 24).
            This original understanding of the Catholic Church Fathers, as described above, is absolutely correct! Jesus declares Peter’s faith in Him as the “Rock upon which I shall build My church…”. Furthermore, Scripture plainly provides this understanding, and once you understand, you will realize that the Roman Catholic theologians have been boldly lying to the faithful for over 1,000 years.
            In the original Scriptures on Matthew 16:18, Jesus uses two words for “Rock” in the original language. This difference in words reveals that Jesus is NOT basing His church on the “large rock” of Peter, but on the “Rock as big as Gibralter” (Jesus Himself). Since the Parallel Bible, Amplified side, captures this essence perfectly, let us now read verses 15-18 to get complete context:
            “He said to them, But who do you [yourselves] say that I am? Simon Peter replied, You are the Christ, the Son of the living God. Then Jesus answered him, Blessed, happy, fortunate, and to be envied are you, Simon Bar-Jonah. For flesh and blood [men] have not revealed this to you, but My Father Who is in heaven.”
            Now, verse 18 contains the clear truth”
            “And I tell you, you are Peter [Greek, Petros–a large piece of rock], and on this rock [Greek, petra–a huge rock like Gibraltar] I will build My church, and the gates of Hades, the powers of the infernal region shall not overpower it, or be strong to its detriment or hold out against it.” [Parallel Bible, KJV/Amplified Bible Commentary]
            As you can see, Jesus plainly stated which “Rock” upon which He was building His church — the confession of faith Peter uttered in verse 17. His use of two distinctly different words for “Rock” clearly prohibits any person from ever believing, or teaching, that Peter was the “Rock”.

          3. Please Walter, don’t try to write false teaching here.
            Jesus didn’t have to name Simon bar Jonah “Peter”.
            He really didn’t have to do that.
            He didn’t even have to make ambiguous words like you try to interpret here.
            If that words didn’t convince you, just read verse 19. To whom Jesus gave the keys of His Kingdom? To Himself?
            Read John 21:15~17. Is that ambiguous too?
            Are you trying to belittle Simon Peter?
            Are you trying to accuse Catholic taught Peter idolatry just because of one foot of St. Peter sculpture is wornout because many years people rubs it?
            I came to Rome and rubbed it once. Before me, maybe thousands of people rubbed it, that made the foot worn out. And that didn’t make me idolater. Because nobody was in the state of adoration when rubbing that foot.
            Very different from people kissing the black stone of Kaaba, and also very different from people in the east rubbing the bronze statue of smiling Buddha.
            Did the clergy there forced us or asked us to rub that foot? No.
            Please don’t make false accusation anymore.

      2. Sorry mcrognale, that is a misinterpretation of that passage. And goes against every other passage of who the rock is throughout the entire bible. Even Peter himself said Christ is the rock. Peter never claimed to be infallible and to speak for God for that would go against the rest of the bible.

      3. You’re dismissive and haughty attitude flies in the face of Paul’s writing in 2 Timothy 2: 22-25, ” “Flee the evil desires of youth and pursue righteousness, faith, love and peace, along with those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart. Don’t have anything to do with foolish and stupid arguments, because you know they produce quarrels. And the Lord’s servant must not be quarrelsome but must be kind to everyone, able to teach, not resentful. Opponents must be gently instructed, in the hope that God will grant them repentance leading them to a knowledge of the truth,”
        Obviously you are a truth seeker, so I recommend you treat those that you disagree with in the way the Lord instructs. You’re words and tone show me someone who is more interested in “being right” than someone who cares about people coming to truth. Stop being prideful and selfish. Plain and simple.
        Now before your pride swells and guides your hand to make a rebuttal. Ask God to reveal any part of your heart to you that is not submitted to him so that you can lay it at the cross. He loves you, man! He wants you more free from yourself.
        As for the nitty gritty of our belief differences, I welcome a DISCUSSION and nothing less.
        You say Jesus founded the church on Peter, the “rock”. Well I say to read the verses in their full context.
        Jesus asks Peter who he believes he (Jesus) is. Peter replies that he believes Jesus is the Messiah – the son of the living God. Jesus then says that on this rock of Peter’s faith, he builds the church.
        The church is built on the faith in who Jesus is. The church is not build on one of the 12 disciples.
        On a side note Jesus himself states ““A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.””
        ‭‭John‬ ‭13:34-35‬ ‭
        He does not say, “This is how you will know my disciples, they will have every answer right all the time and be expert theologians and scholars on all subjects and their church can be traced back down a certain lineage of leaders.”
        He DOES say that these signs will accompany those that believe: “In my name they will drive out demons; they will speak in new tongues; they will pick up snakes with their hands; and when they drink deadly poison, it will not hurt them at all; they will place their hands on sick people, and they will get well.””
        ‭‭Mark‬ ‭16:17-18‬ ‭
        I’m not saying that you have to pick up snakes and drink poison to test your faith, but as 1 Corinthians 4:20 says “For the kingdom of God is not a matter of talk but of power.”
        I’m not trying to convert you to my way of thinking. Just offering you insight into how other Christians think.
        Your Catholic Church didnt suddenly become in a moment what it is today. The Roman Catholic has 1000% changed and evolved over the years. That is obvious. I do not think its true that it started during Peter and Jesus’ meeting. Your church as it is now is a creation that came many years later. Just like all denominations. Being older or younger means nothing. Being at one with the Holy Spirit and having a heart on fire for God and people is what matters. Don’t take this to mean that I don’t believe in an organized church. I just believe that organization and cross denominational lines. God is good and kind. He will not leave someone in the dark when they are truly for his Kingdom because they are in the “wrong denomination”. Don’t feel like you have to figure everything out, man. Lean on God more than your own understanding of things.
        Look maybe you are right and you are in the one true church as you see it, but if you truly believe someone is outside of it, show them some grace instead of heaping sarcastic and dismissive abuse on them, (yes even if they did it first …after all “love your enemy” and respond in love remember?)
        Love you man. Your brother in Christ.

        1. Nowhere does Scripture state that Peter was the first Pope, in order to keep the church from error, the authority of the apostles was passed on to those they ordained (the idea behind apostolic succession). Apostolic succession is “read into” those verses that the Roman Catholic Church uses to support this doctrine (2 Timothy 2:2; 4:2-5; Titus 1:5; 2:1; 2:15; 1 Timothy 5:19-22). Paul does NOT call on believers in various churches to receive Titus, Timothy, and other church leaders based on their authority as bishops or their having apostolic authority, but rather based upon their being fellow laborers with him (1 Corinthians 16:10; 16:16; 2 Corinthians 8:23).
          What Scripture DOES teach is that false teachings would arise even from among church leaders, and that Christians were to compare the teachings of these later church leaders with Scripture, which alone is infallible (Matthew 5:18; Psalm 19:7-8; 119:160; Proverbs 30:5; John 17:17; 2 Peter 1:19-21). The Bible does not teach that the apostles were infallible, apart from what was written by them and incorporated into Scripture. Paul, in talking to the church leaders in the large city of Ephesus, makes note of coming false teachers. To fight against their error does NOT commend them to “the apostles and those who would carry on their authority”; rather, Paul commends them to “God and to the word of His grace” (Acts 20:28-32). It is Scripture that was to be the infallible measuring stick for teaching and practice (2 Timothy 3:16-17), not apostolic successors. It is by examining the Scriptures that teachings are shown to be true or false (Acts 17:10-12).
          Was Peter the first pope? The answer, according to Scripture, is a clear and emphatic “no.” Peter nowhere claims supremacy over the other apostles. Nowhere in his writings (1 and 2 Peter) did the Apostle Peter claim any special role, authority, or power over the church. Nowhere in Scripture does Peter, or any other apostle, state that their apostolic authority would be passed on to successors. Yes, the Apostle Peter had a leadership role among the disciples. Yes, Peter played a crucial role in the early spread of the gospel (Acts chapters 1-10). Yes, Peter was the “rock” that Christ predicted he would be (Matthew 16:18). However, these truths about Peter in no way give support to the concept that Peter was the first pope, or that he was the “supreme leader” over the apostles, or that his authority would be passed on to the bishops of Rome. Peter himself points us all to the true Shepherd and Overseer of the church, the Lord Jesus Christ (1 Peter 2:25).

    2. I think Apostolos you are making your own Church History, study first and make a credible, logical and authentic reseach and inquiry before posting something heresy.

    3. Sorry, Aposolos, you are incorrect. The Orthodox Churches are the ones that split off from the One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church when they refused to accept the Pope as the leader designated by Jesus Christ Himself and promised by Him to be protected from promulgating error in matters faith and morals. The Church founded by Christ was founded upon Peter, the first Pope, and is guaranteed by Jesus that ‘the gates of Hell shall not prevail against it’. Apart from recognizing Jesus’ true designated shepherd, the Orthodox still maintain the faith properly, but it’s a scandal that they reject the authority of Christ’s true representative on earth.

      1. A lot of exegesis in the above posts. Martin Luther was trying to return the Catholic Church to Biblical teaching. So thank you, but as a Lutheran Christian (a follower of Christ by following His teachings in the Bible), my church was founded by Jesus Christ at the time of his resurrection, not by Martin Luther in 1517.

          1. I agree to the extent that Luther was not trying to start a church bearing his name. But it was more than refocusing on the teachings in the bible. He was also calling the Catholic organization out for sinning and asking it to recognize, repent and reform it’s church life on the basis of the Word of God. The church following the teachings of Jesus would have still been the Hebrew/Jewish church taken to it’s next place by God Himself, just as Luther wasn’t trying to form a new “religion”, just return the Catholic church/organization to the correct practices/direction.

    4. Monotheism begins and ends with God, or “I Am” as God referred to himself. There is one God, He has a Spirit and it is Holy and works in marvelous ways at His Will, He fulfilled the scriptures in the form of Jesus who is the Christ, the long promised Messiah. Yet, there are not three God’s, just One. In whatever framework man creates to best try and understand this is the “religion” one chooses or creates. The first church was Hebrew or as we say today as a religion it is “Jewish” however to be Jewish does not make you Hebrew as that is a race of people who are free to follow whatever “religion” they choose. The “catholic” church with a small “c” at the beginning means the believers who see Jesus as the fulfillment of the scriptures, the Christ, the long promised Messiah. As people do throughout the history of civilization, they organize, make rules to keep order and control believers or members of their “religion”, hence the Roman Catholic Church is different than the first followers of the Christ. To battle over who is right or wrong, younger or older is pointless and bears no fruit. However, to love one another and follow in the meaning of the teachings of Christ and develop a personal relationship with God is more important than a “religion”. I want to make sure I emphasize that gathering together as believers in Christ to worship and praise God is important, very important. We should gather together, even visit each other’s “religious houses”. But, no one can boast we are right or more right or condemn saying you are wrong. It is in accepting the understanding of God to be that we must first remember that Christ came for all, not only Hebrew, but all of us. So, we must accept and/or understand the Hebrew tradition in which God revealed his nature to us in Jesus, the Christ, the long promised Messiah and know that His teachings did not end on the cross, or at his resurrection or ascension, He continues to speak to us today if we but listen. To do this, gather, praise, tune your ear to the Lord our God, creator of all things and listen for His still small voice. He will not fail.

    5. So Jesus, preached outside of the Synagogues. He preached outside cities. He never established an organisation, but his instruction was for the Disciples to go into the world and preach the gospel. Does it matter how old is the organisation? I guess what matters to me is our hears, Have we accepted Christ? If we accept him as Lord and savior then we become the Church.

    6. The night Jesus had the last supper on earth is when my Church started that is when Jesus said the first Catholic mass ,That is how old MY Church is .

      1. Jesus never started a Church much less the Catholic Church and what Jesus did at the last Supper had nor has anything to do with the start of the Catholic Church or any Church. Passover is the celebration of the exodus from Egypt which has nothing to do with the Catholic Church but a celebration of the Jews leaving Egypt…

      2. Jesus did not give a mass. You don’t even know what the mass is. Jesus celebrating what we call the last supper was Passover. Try reading the bible

        1. The Mass is full of Scripture..but you will refuse to do the research..and by the way, what Church put the Canon of the Bible together?? Martin Luther was a rebellious monk that denounced the celibacy vows he took and married a nun, who did the same. Where is it in Scripture that he had the authority to start a new church?
          There is one church, one bride and Christ instituted the Eucharist at the last supper..which “protest”ants have rejected.

    7. In the beginning, there was One Good Shepherd founding One True Church upon One Rock. Before His ascension, He ordered One of His disciples, the Rock, to become His Successor Shepherd. He gave him His Keys of His Kingdom, the Authority to bind and to lose.
      Constantinople rose into Patriarchy in 381 at the Council of Constantinople, Jerusalem rose into Patriarchy in 451. Antioch patriarchy was facing division since 532. Alexandria patriarchy came into division in 544.
      Rome was founded by 2 apostles, one was the Rock itself, and the other one was the chosen apostle for gentiles.
      If you still attached to the Shepherd, you won’t break from the flock. You broke from the flock when you decide you won’t go with the Shepherd.
      Read history. Stop assuming.

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