This came about towards the end of the second century. A falling Away From the New Testament Teachings prophesized, note the 3 scriptures:
Acts 20:28-30 (KJV)
- 28 Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood.
- 29 For I know this, that after my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock.
- 30 Also of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them.
A falling away from NT teachings, 1 Timothy 4:1-5 (KJV)
- 1 Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;
- 2 Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron;
- 3 Forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from meats, which God hath created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth.
- 4 For every creature of God is good, and nothing to be refused, if it be received with thanksgiving:
- 5 For it is sanctified by the word of God and prayer.
A falling away from NT teachings, 2 Timothy 4:2-5 (KJV)
- 2 Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine.
- 3 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears;
- 4 And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.
- 5 But watch thou in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, make full proof of thy
The bigger city congregations, as they grew, took over rural congregations extending their power over churches that should be independent.
Early in the second century, “We begin to find congregations headed by a single officer for whom the name bishop is exclusively reserved. Bishops of major Christian influence areas were elevated above other bishops and given the title of “Metropolitan.”
Citys like Rome, Alexandria, Antioch, Ephesus, Jerusalem, and Constantinople had bishops who came to hold leadership positions for the whole church.
The bishop of Rome eventually claimed and was recognized as the universal father or pope of all churches.
As the Departure from New Testament doctrine grew, special councils were held., policies were set, and problems resolved. These special councils grew into general councils or ecumenical councils.
Through the centuries, 21 of these councils were organized.
They were attended by archbishops, bishops, abbots, and eventually cardinals, and they,
• numerous decrees over various problems in these councils.